Sathya Sai Baba is a highly revered spiritual leader and world teacher, whose life and message are inspiring millions of people throughout the world to lead more spiritual, purposeful and moral lives. His timeless and universal teachings, and how he lives those teachings in his own life, are attracting spiritual seekers from all parts of the world. Yet, he is not seeking to start a new religion. His mission is to give us faith in ourselves and in the God within us; to follow the spiritual path of our choice and/or upbringing (as Christians, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, Jews, etc.); and to render selfless service to mankind. Sathya Sai Baba is teaching us to see unity in diversity as he demonstrates that to be fully human is to be fully Divine.
Sathya Sai Baba was born November 23, 1926, in Puttaparthi, a small remote village in South India. As a child he demonstrated exceptional qualities of wisdom, compassion and generosity. One example is that he would take his meals out of his parents home to share with beggars on the street. When he was seven years old he began to compose spiritual songs that were performed at religious festivals. Soon he began to materialise and distribute sweets to his classmates after the singing of devotional songs.
To this day, Sathya Sai Baba is known for his ever-present miracles. Most often he materialises vibhuti (sacred ash), which has healing and spiritual powers. He also materialises gifts (such as sacred objects, jewellery and sweets), cures the sick, and heals mental and emotional wounds. Many people, when in the presence of Sathya Sai Baba, have experienced a tremendous opening of the heart, a warmth that inspires spiritual understanding and melts the dryness that was constricting them. He says that these miracles are his “visiting cards” and that their purpose is to promote greater love of God.
Sathya Sai Baba publicly
declared his mission in 1940, at the age of 14. Since then, he has daily
exhibited in practical and concrete terms the highest ideals of the
Human Values he teaches: Truth, Righteousness, Peace, Love and
Non-violence. He has often stated, My life is my message. Each
day, thousands of pilgrims make their way to the tiny hamlet in southern
India where Sathya Sai Baba’s ashram (spiritual community) is located.
They come not only from India, but from virtually every country in the
Sathya Sai Baba’s Work
Today world leaders seek out Sathya Sai Baba’s presence. He works tirelessly for the welfare of the world. His simple lifestyle is untouched by the grandeur that surrounds him. Sathya Sai Baba gives his life, selflessly and magnanimously, to the service of mankind. He often states:
If there is righteousness in the heart, there will be beauty in the character.
If there is beauty in the character, there will be harmony in the home.
If there is harmony in the home, there will be order in the nation.
When there is order in the nation, there will be peace in the world.
Sathya Sai Baba places great importance on proper education for young people and has established a model education system. In India he has founded elementary and secondary schools, vocational schools, and a university with three campuses (two for men and one for women) that offers undergraduate, Masters, and Ph.D. degrees; no fees are charged to students. Schools based on Sathya Sai Baba’s educational principles are now operating in many countries all over the world.
In addition to emphasising the pursuit of academic excellence, Sathya Sai Baba’s system of “integral education” is designed to foster self-discipline, Human Values, and character development. Students take courses on morality and spirituality and devote time throughout the school year to some form of community service. Sathya Sai Baba says, Education must implant elevating ideals and kindle the lamp of wisdom. Character is the most precious gift of education – the end of education is character.
Sathya Sai Baba believes in providing medical services completely free of charge in hospitals and giving the poor a chance to receive even the most complicated surgery. To this end, he has founded two large, 300 bed hospitals where specialised operations – including open-heart surgery, kidney transplants, and brain surgery – are performed routinely. The regular medical staff is supplemented by doctors from the West who come and spend their vacation time offering their services free of charge.
He has also founded many small Sathya Sai hospitals all over India and his organisation conducts free medical camps in many countries throughout the world. Motivated by the desire to serve humanity, doctors, nurses, and workers render compassionate and loving care to all patients.
Service to the Needy
In 1994, Sathya Sai Baba initiated a project to provide an adequate supply of pure water to 1.5 million inhabitants of the State of Andhra Pradesh (India) who were living with contaminated groundwater and drought conditions. The Prime Minister of India travelled to Prasanthi Nilayam (Sathya Sai Baba’s main ashram) in order to inaugurate the project. Another big water project is for the benefit of a huge slum area of Chennai (formerly Madras). Sathya Sai Baba demonstrates that it is the duty of society to ensure that all people have access to the basic requirements for the sustenance of human life.
Sathya Sai Baba has created the Sathya Sai Organisation, a spiritual, non-profit service organisation that recognises the fundamental unity of all religions of the world. It is devoted to teaching the five Human Values to children, young people and adults, to training teachers to integrate these values into their teaching, and to rendering service to the poor and the suffering. Sathya Sai Baba says, Hands that work are holier than lips that pray.
Sathya Sai Baba’s Message
As a young teenager, Sathya Sai Baba declared to his parents that he had come to this world with a mission to re-establish the principle of righteousness, to motivate love for God and service to fellow man. Since then, he has consistently called on all mankind to Love All, Serve All and has repeatedly asserted that the essence of all scriptures is Help Ever, Hurt Never.
Sathya Sai Baba says that our conscience is a reflection of the eternal spirit and that when we follow our conscience, our thoughts, words, and deeds will be noble and consistent. Spirituality is having the courage and determination to follow our conscience in all matters and at all times. In doing so, we recognise that we are all united in God and bound together by Divine love.
I have come to tell you of this universal, unitary faith, this spiritual principle, this path of love, this duty of love, this obligation to love. Every religion teaches man to fill his being with the glory of God and to evict the pettiness of conceit. It trains him in the methods of non-attachment and discernment, so that he may aim high and attain spiritual liberation.
Believe that all hearts are motivated by the one and only God; that all faiths glorify the one and only God; that all names in all languages and all forms man can conceive denote the one and only God. Cultivate that attitude of oneness between men of all creeds and all countries. That is the message of love I bring.
For more information on Sathya Sai Baba and his teachings please visit this website: www.sathyasai.org