Sai Baba Sri Sathya Sai Baba

    Home  Thought for the Day  |  Sai Inspires 

    Articles | Avatar | Bhajans | Experiences | Messages | Miracles | Prayers | Quotes | Stories | Service | Teachings


Sri Sathya Sai Baba Articles

  Excerpts from Miami Retreat, October 2001

From: R.

Dear Sai family,
SaiRam! I was fortunate to participate in the South-East Regional Sai conference that was held in Miami from Oct 5-7. It was a very spiritually elevating weekend, with several excellent speakers, LIKE our National education Coordinator Berniece Mead, Service coordinator Hal Honig, Dr.Hose Gomez, former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of India, Honorable Justice P.N.Bhagawati and ex students from Swami's college. Provided below is this retreat as described by one of our young adults Dr.Srikanth Sola.

"Sai Ram. Several of us were fortunate enough to attend the Southeast Regional Sai Conference in Miami this past weekend, where we enjoyed a joyful, divine retreat filled with Swami’s love and grace. I would like to share with you some of my personal notes from the conference so that you may also benefis from what we experienced. Although it is not possible to relate everything that happened, I hope that this gives you a feeling of the wonderful satsang we all shared.
Bernice Mead spoke to us about Swami’s definition of MAN, which He says stands for:

M – overcoming Maya
A – experience the vision of the Atma
N – attain Nirvana

She reminded us that it is not necessary to tell people about God or that He is here on Earth. Instead, she said, let them see the God in you. She encouraged us repeatedly to remember that,

“I am God. I am God. Know it. Experience it.”

The Honorable Justice P.N. Bhagavati, former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of India, took time from his busy schedule to speak with us. He related how, as a small child, he would go out into the open and cry for the Lord in the form of Krishna. Years later, Swami came to his home in 1959. Justice Bhagavati came to the airport to greet Swami, and on seeing His divine form for the first time, Justice Bhagavati knew that his Krishna had come. He recalled Swami’s visit and noted that loved poured out from Him to everyone around. On another occasion Justice Bhagavati was speaking to Swami and was overcome by emotion. Swami told him not to give in to emotion – rather, strive for devotion, which is much better than emotion.

Several of Swami’s former students were at the conference, and hearing them talk made us feel as if we were once a part of Swami’s schools and colleges. Srikanth Vaidyanathan described how Swam would coach the students in public speaking, and how He would have them practice their talks multiple times in front of Him until He was satisfied. He shared one experience during which Swami had come to one of the Institute’s schools to inaugurate a new solar powered hot water heater. Swami was to open the tap from the heater, after which hot water would pour out into a container below. Unfortunately, when Swami opened the tap hot water sprayed everywhere, drenching the front of Swami’s gown. Everyone was horrified, but what could they do? Swami just laughed and said, “Not only did I inaugurate the hot water heater, but I also took the first shower.”

Another student, S. Kumar, talked about the different stages that a student went through during his time with Swami, and described how Swami would coach him in his singing. Swami told him that when singing in public, one should sing with the proper tune and rhythm, as well as with true feeling. Sai Subramaniam gave a PowerPoint presentation featuring many of his cherished photos with Swami, and talked about how Swami would spend so much of His time and energy on His students. He always insisted on the best for them – e.g.He would purchase the best musical instruments for them to use, or make sure they had the best food to eat and the best costumes for their plays. When traveling Swami would take care of every preparation for his boys, down to the smallest detail. Sai showed us a photo of Swami holding the ring of Sri Rama, a huge diamond and gold ring that King Janaka had given to Sri Rama at the time of His wedding to Sita. He also showed a photo of Swami holding a large hair brush, for which Swami joked, “See how big My comb is? You people are so lucky - you can comb your hair with only a small comb.”

On Saturday evening, several YA’s and former college boys gave a wonderful music program featuring many of Swami’s favorite songs. One could feel Swami’s divine presence during the program, and we all felt as if were in Prashanti Nilayam itself.

Hal Honig spoke with us about the recent events in NY, his recent trip to Puttaparthi, and about the YA’s in general. With regards to the troubled times in which we live, Hal spoke about how we unfortunately live in a culture that celebrates violence. He quoted statistics from a gun control group that described the number of deaths due to handguns in various countries for a given year (1997, I believe): 2 in New Zealand, 15 in Japan, approx. 100 in Canada, and over 9,300 in
the USA. This violence, he said, is seen everywhere in our society – in our media, our television, our recreation, and internet.

During one of his recent interviews, a mother of a 7 year old child complained to Swami that her son was watching too much TV. Swami told her, “That is your fault,” emphasizing our responsibility to ourselves and our children. Hal repeated Swami’s recent quote in his message to Dr. Goldstein about the recent NYC tragedy, and related another quote from Swami in which He says, “Be bold. So bold that you are determined to bare out any calamity that may assail you. When you have God installed in your heart, who can deter you?” Hal’s interviews with Swami, which took place before the NYC tragedy, took place at a time when Swami is withdrawing from the public eye and asking His devotees to find Him within. Still, Swami spent a lot of a time answering spiritual questions and giving specific instructions to His devotees. Some of the questions and answers from those interview sessions were:

- How do you develop self confidence? “Believe that God is within you.”
- How do you quieten the mind? “That’s easy. Just stop your thoughts…. Work more, think less.” Hal said that our we have to be very careful with our thoughts, as they determine what we experience in life.
- One devotee asked about surrendering to Swami. Swami replied that he (the devotee) did not even have control over the mind or the senses. First, control the senses, then you can think about surrender. During an earlier interview Swami had asked, “What is surrender?” to which He gave the answer, “Surrender is seeing oneness.”
- What is youth? “Youth is determination.” Determination for what? “Determination to control the senses.”
- What type of service should we do? Swami said serve the poor, the elderly, and the diseased.

Finally, when asked what were the qualities of the best YA groups, Hal said:
1) commitment – a commitment to Swami and His teachings, to the YA group, and to service;
2) the members of such groups enjoy what they are doing.

Let us use the blessings and energy we received from this conference to intensify and expand our work for Swami.

Jai Sai Ram

Source: http://www.geocities.com/saicenter_us/snl/snl_102701.htm

Best Resolution 1024x768 -- Copyright © 2004-2015 SAIBABA.WS. All rights reserved. Please read Disclaimer.