Sri Sathya Sai Baba is the Supreme God in human form. The name Sri Sathya Sai Baba means “Divine Auspicious Truth, Mother and Father”. God is the Divine Mother of all living beings and the Supreme Father of this universe. Time and again, That Divine Force descends on earth to remind, reveal, light and manifest the Divine Spark which is latent in every human being. Just as various Divine Incarnations have come down to earth to lead mankind, Sri Sathya Sai Baba incarnated in the present age as the Divine Teacher to guide humanity back to their original state. As stated by Him, the purpose of His Descent is not to establish a new religion or to convert anyone into another religion, but to make a Christian a better Christian, a Hindu a better Hindu, a Muslim a better Muslim and so on. He declares that in reality, “There is only one Religion, the Religion of Love”. All religions are but facets of this same eternal religion.
I have come to light the lamp of love in your hearts, to see that it shines day by day with added luster. I have not come on any mission of publicity for any sect or creed or cause; nor have I come to collect followers for any doctrine. I have come to tell you of this universal unitary faith, this path of Love. Believe that all hearts are motivated by the One and Only God, that all names in all languages, and all forms man can conceive, denote the one and only God. Cultivate the attitude of oneness between people of all creeds, all countries, and all continents. This is the message of Love I bring.”
“I have come to correct the intelligence (buddhi), by various means. I have to counsel, help, command, condemn and stand by as a friend and well-wisher to all, so that they may give up evil propensities and, recognizing the straight mark, tread it and reach the goal. I have to reveal to the people the worth of the Vedas, the Sastras and the spiritual texts which lay down the norms. If you will accept me and say “Yes,” I too will respond and say, “Yes, yes, yes.” If you deny and say “No,” I also echo “No.” Come, examine, experience, have faith. This is the method of utilizing me.”
“I do not mention Sri Sathya Sai Baba in any of my discourses, but I bear the name as Avathar of Sri Sathya Sai Baba. I do not appreciate in the least the distinction between the various appearances of God: Sai, Rama, Krishna, etc. I do not proclaim that this is more important or that is less important. Continue your worship of your chosen God along lines already familiar to you, then you will find that you are coming nearer to me. For all names are mine, and all forms are mine. There is no need to change your chosen God and adopt a new one when you have seen me and heard me.”
“Practice Sathya( Truth), Dharma (Righteousness), Shanthi (Peace) and Prema (Divine Love), which are dear to me; resolve to keep those ideals before you ever, in all your thoughts, words and deeds. That can confer on you the ultimate good of mergence in the supreme substance of Divinity.”
“There is only one religion, the religion of Love; There is only one language, the language of the Heart; There is only one caste, the caste of Humanity; There is only one law, the law of Karma; There is only one God, He is Omnipresent. If wealth is lost, nothing is lost. If health is lost, something is lost. If character is lost, all is lost. Duty without love is deplorable. Duty with love is desirable. Love without duty is Divine.”
His Life and Works
Sri Sathya Sai Baba says that His Life is His Message. His life and works exemplify His philosophy that one should have the “Head in the forest and hands in the society” – thinking should be dispassionate, while the hands are serving the society. He instructs that as one works on discovering one’s Divinity through devotion and love for God, the spiritual progress should be reflected in one’s thoughts, words and actions as selflessness and compassion for fellow beings. The models and examples provided by Him demonstrate how, when, where and on what human effort should be focussed.
Selfless service to the downtrodden fellow human beings and every creature around us, care for the mother nature stemming from a sense of gratitude for the bounty bestowed by God are primary characteristics of every action expected of a follower of Sri Sathya Sai Baba. He demonstrated by example these principles from His childhood throughout His Life in human form.
He established model institutions and projects in the major spheres of Social Service, Education and Medicine embodying the fine principles of Sociocare, Educare and Medicare respectively. These models portray how spirituality and selflessness can power and energize efforts in key areas of human welfare. These service efforts attend to the emotional, intellectual and physical needs of the recipients, while at the same time effect the blossoming of these same dimensions in the giver.
He oversaw the establishment of “Super Specialty Hospitals” in Puttaparthi and Bangalore, India that deliver state-of- the-art health care free of cost to all without any differentiation or discrimination based on caste, creed, color or status.
He has inspired many other medial initiatives including mobile hospitals, various medical camps that serve the needs of the general populace in villages, towns and cities around the world. These initiatives continue to thrive and grow.
Sri Sathya Sai Baba initiated the Balavikas Program (also referred to as the Sri Sathya Sai Spiritual Education Program) to complement the mainstream education with spiritual education. In Sri Sathya Sai Baba’s words education should prepare students to lead an ideal life and should not have the narrow aim of earning a livelihood. His philosophy calls for an education systems that fosters an integrated development of head, hands and heart. The education should foster the human values of Satya (Truth), Dharma (Righteousness), Shanti (Peace), Prema (Divine Love) and Ahimsa (Non-violence).
He established educational facilities such as Sri Sathya Sai Elementary, Secondary Schools and the Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning ( Deemed to be University) offering free education from Kindergarten to Post-doctoral research. These institutions were personally directed by Him to ensure instilling education embodying the philosophy of education outlined by Him. These stand as model institutions for what should be the aim of True Education.
Empathy for the suffering of the fellow human beings and working towards their upliftment is a fundamental characteristic of human beings. The initiatives and inspiration provided by Sri Sathya Sai Baba include:
- adoption of villages needing reconstruction and rehabilitation
- a holistic approach of considering the development of all aspects of life in extending social service
- provision of emergency relief and natural disaster relief
- Undertaking large-scale water projects to provide drinking water to deal with severe water shortage