We have been devotees of Bhagavan since 1975 and before that we didn’t know who Sai Baba was. The first photograph of Baba was brought by my elder brother from one of his classmate whose mother was a Bal Vikas Guru. At that time all three of us were very small and we did not know about the outer world. Then my father’s health was not good. He was an asthma patient. Doctors told us that he would not survive. After some days he had a severe asthma attack. He was not able to breathe. Immediately he was taken to the hospital where the doctors said that it was very difficult to keep him alive. So, finally my mother and we prayed to Sai Baba who immediately responded to the prayers by granting a new lease of life to our father. Now, Bhajans started in our home and every member of our house started participating in some or the other Swami’s activities. Gradually we brothers became singers in the Samiti. We were also there in Pre - Seva Dal and Seva Dal etc. In this way some ten years passed.
In 1984 October, my father was undergoing some treatment in All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS). But on 29th October, 1984 my father was passing through critical time. He was not able to breathe properly. The doctors told us that I thought that Swami would come as a doctor and everything would be alright. Because I read in some of the books about such instances I could think of such an idea. My father breathed his last. Swami did not turn up. At that time all our relatives were out of station. So, it was really a difficult time for us to arrange for the funeral. My brother was shocked at the death of our father, and his condition became serious. But, I somehow controlled myself and went to one of my cousins. He used to like us and our father. He also was a regular visitor to the hospital. I entered his house and told him everything about father’s death. At first he was socked but after a while he consoled me and immediately came with me. We went to the hospital. At that time, my mother and brother were not in a proper condition due to the shock due to my father’s sudden demise. Anything might happen at any time to them I thought.
But at that instance a miracle happened. Three ladies dressed like Muslims in black burkhas (dress wit a veil) came to my mother, pressed her head consoled her and told her not to mourn because that day was auspicious – Kartika Poornima day and whoever dies on that day gets salvation from the chain of rebirth. They also consoled my brother and finally they came to me. They asked me how I was related to the one who died. I told them that he was my father. Then they asked me some more questions. I was irritated with their strange questions and I moved away from that place. Finally, somehow with Swami’s grace, we finished the funeral. We were waiting for my elder brother who was in Parthi to come. But actually he had gone to Madras for some training and none was there to intimate us about whereabouts in Madras.
But, on the same day he had a telephone call from some unknown person that such and such a thing had happened and he should go to Delhi at once. But he first came to Parthi and asked Swami, and Swami said to him, “So everything is over now, and you have to go for the funeral ceremony,” and asked him to bring mother and us - the two brothers. Swami also said to him that he would take care of us. Only two days passed and the city was on fire, because Indira Gandhi, the then Prime Minister of India, was assassinated on that day. Now, it was a tough task for my brother to come to Delhi. But, somehow with Swami’s grace, he safely reached Delhi and we finished the 12 days ceremony. As my first elder brother had some work in ‘Doordarshan Kendra’, he was not able to come to Parthi. My mother agreed to come as Swami wanted her to come. But when my brother asked me to come, I said to him, “See brother, I can’t come to Parthi as it is a more wastage of money. But tell Swami, I will come if He agreed to give me a seat in His Institute.” I had completed my 12th then and I was working for some of the video and colour TV manufacturers. My mother and second elder brother came to Parthi and Swami gave them interview and in the inside interview room Swami said to my mother, “See your husband was having asthma for ten years. But at that time as the children were very small I gave life to him. But now the children are able to stand on their own feet. And, moreover everyone has to die someday or the other.” Then Swami disclosed that He Himself had come as the three Muslim ladies in the hospital to bless her. Then Swami asked, “Why didn’t Kumar come?” then my mother replied, “Swami he says that he would come if only You gave him seat in Your Institute.” So finally after a few months i.e. in May 1985, I came to Bangalore and then to Parthi. I was staying at that time in C-11, West Prasanthi III. There, one day I had an argument with a Bengali person. He was telling me that Swami was not God but merely a scholar. He argued that since I hadn’t seen God ever before how could I accept Swami as God. I put back the same question to him arguing that since he hadn’t seen God ever before how could he refuse Swami as God.
The next day was the entrance examination day. Till then I hadn’t prepared for the examination because I was thinking that since Swami had promised me to give seat, I should not strain myself unnecessarily. Slowly, night approached, it was 9:30 pm. and I was not getting sleep. So I started looking through some of my course books, so that I could get sleep. But this time again a miracle happened. Instead of sleeping I started getting interested in those books and one by one I finished all the five subjects. Then I saw it was 3:15 am in the morning.
Now, I slept and got up at 6 am, had my bath and breakfast and was ready for my entrance examination. My brother and some of his classmates wished me “Best of Luck.” I also had Swami’s Darshan and Swami was smiling at me. Then I went and took the examination. All the papers were easy. And I said to my brother, “No need to worry. I will get seat easily as I did well in the examination.” Next day, I had the interview. That also I cleared with Swami’s grace. After a few days, the results were declared and I was declared successful. I reminded myself that Swami kept His words. He has brought me to the Lotus Feet.
- Kumar Sharma
Alumnus, Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning
Prasanthi Nilayam Campus
Source: Sai Nandana 1985 (60th Birthday)