Temple of Learning|
The Gift of Divine intimacy
Few realise to what
extent Swami goes out of the way to confer favours upon the
students. One of the incomparable gifts of Divine intimacy that He
confers is the famous 'Trayee Sessions' that take place while
Swami is in Brindavan.
Trayee Brindavan or
Trayee as it is more popularly known, is the Mandir of
Bhagavan's Ashram in Brindavan [in Whitefield, Bangalore].
It is Swami's residence when He is in Whitefield.
circular building called Trayee came into existence in 1984,
replacing an earlier building [known as Bungalow] of more
conventional design. The centre of Trayee is a circular hall with
a high ceiling. On the periphery of this hall are several rooms,
some of which are set apart for Interviews. There are similar
rooms on the first floor too, and Bhagavan occupies one of these.
Right behind the main entrance is a large, curving, 'veranda' that
can seat about two hundred or so. At one end of this veranda is a
sofa and at the other end is a small swing or jhoola. During the
famous 'Trayee sessions', Swami is seated on the jhoola while the
boys crowd all over, spilling into the adjoining circular hall. In
front of the building are lawns and flowerbeds.
The Trayee sessions
take place in the evenings, after Darshan and Bhajan are over.
Typically, this is what happens: Swami first returns to Trayee
while boys wait in the Sai Ramesh Hall [where Darshan is given],
eagerly looking forward to the signal to go in. They then rush
into the veranda of Trayee and take vantage seats. The teachers
and a few elders also are permitted to attend these sessions but
basically they are meant for the boys.
are the variations to the Trayee session, and countless are the
lessons and experiences they provide to those lucky to be present.
Typically, the session would commence with Baba signalling to
someone in the audience to speak. After the preliminary warm-up
speeches are over, Swami slowly rises to speak to the boys. His
'speech' is a Discourse of course, often linked to one of the
points made by those who spoke earlier. Sometimes, He speaks
sitting down in the jhoola.
Discourses have a unique character of their own, and are quite
different from the public Discourses that one is generally used
to. Swami's voice is soft, gentle, loving, and most affectionate.
It is very much like a mother talking to her children; indeed, it
is nothing but that. When Swami speaks to students in Trayee,
there is only one purpose - to mould their character. He does this
in innumerable ways, illustrating His points with appropriate
stories and historical anecdotes.
are days when Swami takes it easy, leaving the proceedings
entirely to teachers, students, and the elders present. Some
evenings it is all music, with the boys displaying their skills in
both singing and in playing various musical instruments.
Occasionally, it is all jokes, with even Swami narrating a few
amusing ones of His own! At times, Swami just sits in the jhoola
and asks the boys to chant the Vedas in unison. And while they
chant, He is in Pure Bliss. Occasionally, He chants along with the
boys, though very softly.
In May, it is
vacation for the boys, and most of them go home to be with their
parents. Some, however, stay on. When the number of students is
small, Swami permits ladies and parents of students also to be
present in Trayee. The sessions now acquire yet another
such day in the month of May, Swami spotted a small boy about
seven years old seated near Him, and started teasing the boy in
various ways. He then said, "Listen, get married". The boy said,
"No Swami". "I have selected a nice girl for you". "No Swami".
"Why are you saying 'No Swami'? The girl I have selected is very
good looking and an ideal match". Again, "No Swami". "Why 'No
Swami'"? Without a moment of hesitation the boy replied, "Too much
problem Swami!" Everyone burst into laughter, including the mother
of the boy, who was present. Joining the laughter, Baba said with
a twinkle in His eyes, "See? He already knows!" More laughter!
After some moments He added, "That is what the boy is saying now
but wait till he grows up to twenty two or so; then he will change
his mind." A small lesson there.
One year during the
vacation period, Swami asked a Greek lady to address the
gathering. This lady happens to be a doctor, actively involved in
Sai service. One of her service campaigns was in Croatia, then
torn by war and conflict. She organised a volunteer group and took
it to Croatia for rendering assistance to the war victims. The
members of the group distributed packets containing food,
medicines, clothing, and along with these, a small photo of Swami.
Recalling the service experience, the doctor said, "The people
were very happy that we had come to help them. One of the people
there held up Baba's photo and said, 'We know this person'. I was
very surprised and asked, 'How do you know Him? Have you heard
about Him?' They replied, 'No, we have actually seen Him here.' I
was astounded and asked, 'Seen Him? Here in Croatia? And what was
He doing here?' They said 'Just what you are doing; distributing
food, blankets, and medicines.' I was stunned."
electrifying narration was over, one of the devotees present
remarked, "Swami this is absolutely extra-ordinary!" Swami
replied, "For you it is extra-ordinary but for Me, this quite
ordinary and routine." A hush descended on the audience -
are dramatic moments too. Once, after sitting down on the jhoola,
Swami asked, "Where is the person from America?" The gentleman
concerned was spotted and he rose to come forward. Swami asked the
devotee to come near Him and while the devotee was doing so, with
a wave of His hand Swami materialised a bottle. He held the bottle
up so that everyone could see it. He then said, "This devotee has
an eye problem, and has come all the way from America to seek
Swami's advice. This bottle contains eye-drops." Meanwhile, the
devotee, Dr. Ram Setty, had come close to Swami and knelt before
Him. With much Love and Compassion, Swami poured a few drops of
the liquid into the eyes of the devotee and then handed the bottle
over to him with instructions about further doses. The event was
not only etched permanently in the hearts of all those present but
also touched everyone. The devotee had not even 'met' Swami after
arrival and placed his problem before Bhagavan; but He was ready
with the treatment, nonetheless. Swami was indirectly telling
everyone present, "If you think of Me, I too shall think of you!"
The story does not
quite end with Swami giving Dr. Ram Setty the bottle of eye-drops.
A couple of days after this incident, Dr. Setty was called for an
Interview. A few boys also were present. Baba asked the boys, "Do
you remember this person?" "Yes, Swami; You blessed him with
eye-drops the other day." Swami then continued, "You have no idea
how bad his condition was then". He then asked Dr. Setty to
describe the condition of the eyes before Swami gave him medicine.
Swami then added it was very red, red like this; so saying, He
waved His hand and there appeared two strawberries! To the stunned
audience He asked, "What are these?" Dazed, one of them replied,
"Swami, strawberries." Swami said, "Not just strawberries but
California strawberries! Dr. Setty lives in California!" Turning
to Dr. Setty, Baba asked, "Are these not the type you get in your
part of the world?" The astonished doctor nodded his head. Swami
gave him the strawberries and said with a smile, "Eat it!"
are tender moments too. Once, a casual conversation was in
progress at the beginning of a Trayee session when a boy seated in
the front offered some peanuts to Baba in a small bowl. Swami
brushed it aside and continued the conversation. After a few
minutes the boy tried again and once more Swami refused. A third
try and a third refusal. The fourth time the boy was successful.
Swami took the bowl from the boy's hands and after popping a
couple of nuts into His mouth began distributing it to the boys
nearby. Eagerly, boys thrust their hands forward. Swami dropped a
few nuts into each palm stretched out to Him. He then asked the
boy who originally gave the nuts to stretch out his hand; the boy
did. Swami dipped into the bowl, picked a few nuts, and then made
a gesture like dropping the nuts into the out-stretched palm. What
fell into the palm were not peanuts but a shining diamond ring!
The boy was stunned. Swami took the ring and slipped it on to one
of the fingers. The boy now began to cry; he was too overwhelmed
to utter any words. Baba then said, "This boy loves Swami very
much. He did not want to come empty handed here. He did not do
anything great. He just took a small bowl, went to the Hostel
store, filled it with shelled peanuts and brought it here - that
is all. Swami is not bothered about what you offer but the
feelings that accompany the offering. Any day, a teaspoon of cow's
milk is better than a barrel of donkey's milk!"
For Swami's boys
Trayee is a magic word that recreates scenes not witnessed since
the boyhood-days of Krishna. In a manner of speaking, what happens
is similar, though the settings and the time period are different.
One of the Actors in the Drama is also the same; about the others,
only He can say!
In the summer
of 1995, Swami permanently cured a terrible eye
infection I had been battling for a few years. I
suffered from conjunctival haemorrhage [bruises under
the eye membrane], that bled at least two or three
times a year. During the Summer Course which I
attended by His Grace, I had the worst eye-bleed. I
could not even look at myself in the mirror. During a
Trayee Session, I did not want to be seen; so I sat
inconspicuously in a corner of the room. In spite of
this, Swami saw my suffering and materialised eye
drops that were cool, refreshing, and soothing. I was
completely cured, and the problem has not recurred
since. What a compassionate and loving God!
Source: Radio Sai
E-Magazine, 1st November 2003