Sai Baba Sri Sathya Sai Baba

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Sri Sathya Sai Baba Teachings

  Importance of Human Birth

Sri Sathya Sai Baba has said:

"A human birth is the most sacred one among the 84 lakhs (840,000) of different living beings in this creation. To attain such a sacred birth is a great fortune, indeed." (Baba the Breath of Sai, pag. 311)

"The traditional number of created beings is 84 lakhs, and man is the final item of the evolutionary procession; but, why did the number stop at 84 lakhs? It stopped because man is the zenith, the fullness; he is Maadhava in fact, though he has ignored the truth and holds fast to the belief that he is just a man. He is endowed with manas, buddhi, chiththa and ahamkaara (mind, intelligence, reasoning fac lty and ego), all four, in an integrated personality, whereas the birds and beasts and all other species have mostly ahamkaaram (ego) alone. The lives of the later are centred round the aham and its desires and demands. But, man has the capacity to follow sathya, dharma, shaanthi and prema; man alone has it. If he does not evince that capacity and develop it, he is as bad as a vaanara or a daanava (ape or ogre). When man was created, there remained nothing higher to create." (SSS Vol. 6-15)

"Having taken birth thousand and thousand of cores of times, as a result of the accumulated merits, at some time the being gets the human birth. Having obtained the human birth which is difficult to get and which is like a step to Liberation who is more sinful than him who does not uplift himself." (Garuda Purana and Sai Teachings, Path to Liberation, pag. 29)

"Man is the most sacred of all the animals. To be born as a man is an extraordinary gift. Therefore, man must use this life of his in a purposeful manner. The disciples of Sankara (Lord Shiva) have pointed out that man remains in a miserable state in the womb of the mother during this cycle of birth and death. He gets some relief from such suffering after his birth. Therefore, he must make life a sacred one." (Baba the Breath of Sai, pag. 108)

"Man alone has the chance to liberate himself from the wheel of birth and death, through the pleasant means of serving God. But as a result of ignorance, or what is worse, perversity, he lets the opportunity slip from his hands, and suffers grief and pain, fear and anxiety, ad infinitum." (SSS Vol. VI, pag. 60)

Below is an extract from Shri Sai Satcharitra, Chap. VII.

Importance of Human Birth

In this wonderful universe, God has created billions (84 lacs according to Hindusastra calculation) of creatures or beings (including Gods, demigods, insects, beasts and men) inhabiting heaven, hell, earth, ocean, sky and other intermediate regions. Of these, those creatures or souls, whose merits preponderate, go to heaven and live there till they enjoy the fruits of their actions, and when this is done, they are cast down while those souls, whose sins or demerits preponderate, go down to hell, and suffer the consequences of their misdeeds for so long a time as they deserve. When their merits and demerits balance each other, they are born on earth as human beings, and are given a chance to work out their salvation. Ultimately when their merits and demerits both drop down (are got rid of) completely, they get their deliverance and become free. To put the matter in a nutshell, souls get their births or transmigrations according to their deeds and intelligence (development of their minds).

Special Value of the Human Body

As we all know, four things are common to all the creatures, viz. food, sleep, fear and sexual union. In the case of man, he is endowed with a special faculty, viz. knowledge, with the help of which he can attain God-vision, which is impossible in any other birth. It is for this reasons that Gods envy man's fortune and aspire to be born as men on earth, so as to get their final deliverance.

Some say, that there is nothing worse than the human body, which is full of filth, mucus, phlegm and dirt, and which is subject to decay, disease and death. This is no doubt true to a certain extent; but inspite of these drawbacks and defects, the special value of the human body is - that man has got the capacity to acquire knowledge: it is only due to the human knowledge that one can think of the perishable and transitory nature of the body itself, and of the world and get a disgust for the sense-enjoyments and can discriminate between the unreal and the real, and thus attain God-vision. So, if we reject or neglect the body because it is filthy, we lose the chance of God-vision, and if we fondle it, and run after sense - enjoyments, because it is precious, we go to hell. The proper course, therefore, for us to pursue is the following; that the body should neither be neglected nor fondled, but should be properly cared for, just as a traveler on horse-back takes care of his pony on the way till he reaches his destination and returns home. Thus the body should ever be used or engaged to attain God-vision or self-realization, which is the supreme end of life.

It is said that though God created various sorts of creatures he was not satisfied, for none of them was able to know and appreciate His work. So he had to create a special being - Man, and endow him with a special faculty, viz. Knowledge and when He saw that man was able to appreciate His Leela - marvellous work and intelligence. He was highly pleased and satisfied. (Vide, Bhagawat 11-9-28). So really it is good luck to get a human body, better luck to get birth in a Brahmin family, and best one, to get an opportunity of having recourse to Sai Baba's Feet and surrendering to Him.

Man's Endeavour

Realizing how precious the human life is, and knowing that Death is certain and may snatch us at any time, we should be ever alert to achieve the object of our life, we should not make the least delay but make every possible haste to gain our object, just as a widower is most anxious to get himself married to a new bride, or just as a king leaves no stone unturned to seek his lost son. So with all earnestness and speed, we should strive to attain our end, i.e., self-realization. Casting aside sloth and laziness, warding off drowsiness, we should day and night meditate on the Self. If we fail to do this, we reduce ourselves to the level of beasts.

How to Proceed?

The most effective and speedy way to gain our object is to approach a worthy Saint or Sage - Sadguru, who has himself attained God-vision. What cannot be achieved by hearing religious lectures and study of religious works, is easily obtained in the company of such worthy souls. Just as the sun alone gives light, which all the stars put together cannot do, so the Sad-Guru alone imparts spiritual wisdom which all the sacred books and sermons cannot infuse. His movements and simple talks give us 'silent' advice. The virtues of forgiveness, calmness, disinterestedness, charity, benevolence, control of mind and body, egolessness etc. are observed by the disciples as they are being practiced in such pure and holy company. This enlightens their minds and lifts them up spiritually. Sai Baba was such a Sage or Sad-Guru. Though He acted as a Fakir (mendicant), He was always engrossed in the Self. He always loved all beings in whom He saw God or Divinity. By pleasures He was not elated. He was not depressed by misfortunes. A king and a pauper were the same to Him. He, whose glance would turn a beggar into a king, used to beg His food from door to door in Shirdi, and let us now see how He did it.

Om Sai Ram

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