Sathya Sai Baba

Sathya Sai Baba
Born "Sathya Narayana Raju" 1926, Sathya Sai Baba is a popular Indian guru who has millions of followers and hundreds of Sathya Sai Centers in over a hundred countries. Satya Sai Baba was born to a poor agrarian family, as the son of Pedavenkappa Raju and Easwaramma. Being born after the Sri Sathyanarayana Puja, the child was aptly named after the puja's presiding deity, Sathyanarayana. It was reported that when he was born, musical instruments in the household started creating playing music on their own. On May 23rd 1940, when he was fourteen, he claimed to be the reincarnation of the fakir Shirdi Sai Baba and subsequently took the fakir's name. He says that he is an avatar (incarnation) of Shiva and Shakti and an embodiment of love with divine powers such as omniscience and omnipresence.

At the age of 14, 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! He has followers in over a 100 countries that are represented in world-wide conferences. His followers are estimated to be around 10 million. The once rural hamlet of Puttaparthi has been transformed into a thriving international city where thousands flock to see the Guru.

It is said that the Sathya was a child prodigy, one who composed bhajans (devotional songs) spontaneously. The simple village folk marvelled at the child's gifts, calling him Biddalaguru (child-guru) and Brahmajnani (knowing universal truths). There were other qualities too in the child that captivated people -- his sunny temperament, generous and loving nature and kindness to creatures great and small.

Sathya went to school at Puttaparthi, Bukkapatnam (a couple of miles away) and Kamalapuram in Cuddapah district. Later, he went to a high school in Uravakonda (in Anantapur district), where his elder brother was a teacher.

Even as a child Sathya was already manifesting extraordinary powers -- plucking things out of the thin air, on one occasion even transfixing a scolding teacher to his chair! The smiling, frizzy-haired lad was half-prankster and half-conjurer in his schoolmates' eyes. He was bright, showing flair not only for academics, but also music, dance and drama.

Through his speeches and writings, Sathya Sai Baba has offered a veritable ocean of knowledge and guidance on all aspects of spiritual, religious, and value-oriented living. He has often repeated that it is not necessary to drink the whole ocean to know its taste, that it is not necessary to read all scriptures to live a life of joy, peace, and love. It is enough to put into practice one aspect of spiritual teaching.

Sathya Sai Baba urges mankind to: Believe in God --for there is only ONE GOD for all mankind, though He may be called by many names. Follow sincerely their own respective religions and live their daily lives in consonance with the teachings of good behavior and morality. Respect all other religions --for no religion advocates the negative and lower qualities of man. Perform selfless service to the poor, the sick, and the needy without thought of reward or fame. Cultivate in their lives the values of truth, divine love, right conduct, peace, and nonviolence and promote these values among all. Be patriotic and respect the laws of the country in which they live.

He is said to manifest vibuthi (holy ash) and small objects like rings and watches daily. He claims to materialize these objects out of nothing. These claims are believed and testified to by his followers. Sacred ash, amrit (honey), kumkum, sandle paste, fragrances, flowers and even letters are reported as materializing from his pictures all around the world. In addition, the followers, and even many non-followers, have testified about many miracles and cures performed by him. He preaches a foundation of five basic values: Truth, Right Conduct, Peace, Love and Non-violence. He teaches the unity of all major world religions and says that they all lead to God. His followers and the organizations that he has founded are involved in many charity projects, providing free modern hospitals and water projects serving thousands in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh and the city of Chennai (Madras). In his ashram and around it there are various buildings including a University and a World Religions Museum. He has founded schools all over India and his "values-teaching methods" are slowly being implemented in other countries.

His mission was further clarified in a letter he wrote to his brother in 1947, stating, in part, "I have a task to foster all mankind and ensure for all of them lives full of bliss. I have a vow: To lead all who stray away from the straight path again into goodness and save them. I am attached to a work that I love: To remove the sufferings of the poor and grant them what they lack."

Shirdi Sai Baba
When the boy Sathya Narayana Raju (born in the village of Puttaparthi) was in his teens, he claimed to be the reincarnation of the fakir Shirdi Sai Baba, who was not well known in that area. Shirdi was, at the time, just a small village near Kopergaon in Maharashtra. It has now become a place of pilgrimage for millions of devotees because Sai Baba spent his life there. Shirdi Sai lived in Shirdi upto the Dussehra of 1918. Hemadpant in his Sai Satcharita, has recorded the experience of euphoric devotees in Shirdi as they served their Lord who, in turn, showered them with His blessings and His love as He led them on the spiritual path of self-less service and devotion. On Dussehra day of 1918, Shirdi Baba cast off his mortal coil and took Mahasamadhi to save the life of His most beloved devotee Tatya Patil. Sharada Devi, alias 'Pedda Bottu', who lived at the time of Shirdi Sai Baba, said that Sai Baba predicted his rebirth in Andrah Pradesh to her. When Sharada Devi heard about a man in Andrah Pradesh calling himself the reincarnation of Shirdi Sai Baba, she immediately went to see him. Sathya Sai Baba immediately recogized her, called her close and told her about being with him in his "previous body" at Shirdi.

Sathya Sri Sai Baba

Beliefs and Practices in the Sathya Sai Organisation

Primary teachings are:

Nine-Point Code of Conduct

Center members are expected to do their best to practice the Nine-Point Code of Conduct in order to be examples of Sathya Sai Baba's teachings:

1) Daily meditation and prayer (Jap).

2)Group devotional singing (bhajan) or prayer with family members once a week.

3) Participation in Sai Spiritual Education (Bal Vikas Programme) by children of the family.

4) Participation in community service work and other programs of the organization.

5) Regular attendance at the Center's devotional meetings (Bhajan or Nagar Sankirtan).

6) Regular study of Sathya Sai Baba literature.

7) The use of soft, loving speech with everyone.

8) Not speaking ill of others, especially in their absence.

9) Narayana Seva. Practice placing a ceiling on desires - consciously and continuously strive to eliminate the tendency to waste time, money, food and energy - and utilize the savings for service to mankind.

Sathya Sai Baba resides much of the time in his main ashram called Prashanthi Nilayam (Supreme Abode of Peace) at Puttaparthi, Andrah Pradesh, India. In the hot summer the guru leaves for his other ashram called Brindavan in Whitefield (sometimes called Kadugodi), a town on the outskirts of Bangalore.

He is regarded as an excellent orator in his native language Telugu. He claims to be the Kali Yuga purna avatar (full divine incarnation of this era) of Lord Shiva and Shakti. He says that he is omniscient, omnipotent, able to create matter from mere thought. He also stresses he is free from desires. He preaches love and the unity of all religions. Sai Baba claims to be pure divine love.

Baba asserts that he is an avatar of God, and a reincarnation of Lord Rama, of Sri Krishna, and of Shirdi Sai Baba. Many of his followers say that he is the primary avatar of our times. Many claim to have had awake-visions of him as various Gods and Goddesses. He has repeatedly claimed to be the actual reincarnation of Vishnu, Rama, Krishna, Shiva, Shakti and Vishvarupa.

Sai Baba has left India only once for a visit to Uganda in 1968. It was reported by two devotees, Dr. Patel and Dr. Gadhia, who lived there at the time that Sai Baba warned them to sell their belongings and leave the country. A few years later, Idi Amin pulled his coup and began his murderous rampage telling Asians they must leave the country. Dr. Gadhia, who had heeded Sai Baba's warning, sold all his belongings and escaped to London where he was able to start a new practise. Dr. Patel lost his property but was able to escape. Sathya Sai Baba was also seen speaking to natives in their mother tongue of Swahili.

Sathya Sai Baba can be seen in person performing what he claims are miracles daily in the form of materializations of small objects, for example jewelry such as bracelets, rings, watches, rosary beads and especially vibhuti (holy ash) and kum kum. He says that he can heal diseases of his devotees sometimes by his spiritual power and sometimes by taking on the disease himself. There is anecdotal evidence that supports this claim. Followers attribute many miracles to him which they have witnessed in his presence and in their own countries, such as spontaneous vibhuti manifestations on the pictures of the guru in their homes, and bilocation the appearance of Sai Baba in their own presence while he is also in another place. Followers also report that he has materialized out-of-season fruit several times. He says he performs these miracles to attract people and then to transform them spiritually. He gives little importance to his miracles and stresses Divine Love as being his greatest miracle.

He teaches a rather traditional but syncretic form of Hinduism that has come from many sects and movements including advaita, occasionally drawing from other religions like Buddhism, Sikhism, and Christianity. He claims to be a reincarnation of Shirdi Sai Baba, a spiritual leader who blended Islam and Hinduism in his teachings, and has a nominal Muslim following. The only real Christian influence can be felt in the institution of regular Sunday School sessions for devotees and the symbol of the cross on the Sarva Dharma Symbol of his organization. He says that he has come to restore faith in, and encourage the practice of the teachings in the Vedas, which stress unity among diversity.

One important practice in his ashrams is darshan (spiritual sight). During darshan Sathya Sai Baba walks among his followers. He may listen to a few chosen persons, accept letters, or materialize and distribute vibhuti (sacred ash). Sathya Sai Baba claims that his darshan has spiritual benefits for those who attend it. Usually people wait hours to get a good place for darshan. Sathya Sai Baba sometimes invites people for a group interview with him in a room in the 'ashram's 'mandir' (Hindu temple). Followers consider it a great privilege to get such an interview. Sometimes a person from this group is invited for a private interview.

Across the globe local Sathya Sai Baba groups assemble to sing bhajans (devotional songs that praise Jesus, Buddha, Krsna, Shiva, etc.), study Sathya Sai Baba's teachings, do collective community service (called seva), and teach Education in Human Values (Sai Sunday School). His followers generally do not proselytize. Bhajans are sung at nearly every meeting.

Sathya Sai Baba interacts with all people on a heart-to-heart basis. There are no intermediaries between himself and those who yearn for knowledge and experience of God. Every day for more than 50 years, Sathya Sai Baba has walked among and talked with the spiritual pilgrims who gather around him in increasing numbers. He offers solace and inspiration to all sincere seekers of truth.

Sathya Sai Baba places great importance on proper education for young people. Parents and community leaders are urged to concern themselves with the informal as well as the formal experiences to which their children and young adults are exposed.

He has established a model education system, which includes primary schools, secondary schools, and an accredited university with three campuses, offering undergraduate, Masters, and Ph.D. degrees. No fees are charged (except for food charges) to students, and admission is open to all, regardless of race, religion, or economic condition.

In addition to emphasizing the pursuit of academic excellence, Sathya Sai Baba's system of "integral education" is designed to foster self-discipline and pro-social conduct. Students are required to take courses on morality and spirituality and to devote several hours each week to some form of community service. Sathya Sai Baba says that "the end of education is character".

Sathya Sai Baba has built an ultra-modern 300-bed hospital close to the university and ashram. Highly specialized operations, including open-heart operations and kidney transplants, are performed routinely. There is absolutely no charge to the patient for professional or hospital expenses (only charges incurred are for out-of-hospital medications). Motivated by the desire to serve humanity, doctors, nurses, and workers in the hospital render extraordinary, compassionate, and loving care to all patients.

Service to those in need. Recently, 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 in drought conditions. The Prime Minister of India traveled to Prasanthi Nilayam (Sathya Sai Baba's main ashram) in order to inaugurate the project. 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 Organization Logo

He has founded a number of educational institutions and charitable hospitals, most notably the Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning and the Sri Sathya Institute of Higher Medicine, located within or near the main ashram at Puttaparthi in the Anantapur District of Andrah Pradesh, India. These organizations seek to provide free education and health care to the public. They are private institutions and their admission criteria are not published, admissions being decided on individual merits as decided by Sai Baba or his executives. Many of the patients are devotees from India and abroad.

The trust organization has made large contributions to drinking water projects for the whole of the Anantapur district in Andhra Pradesh and Chennai.

His Educare (formerly called Education in Human Values) programme seeks to found schools in all countries with the explicit goal to educate children in the five human values and spirituality. Schools have already been founded in Canada Toronto, Zambia, Australia, the United States, and several in India. As all these operations are public.

All the local Sai Samithis (Sathya Sai Baba groups) are part of a hierarchical structure called the Sathya Sai Organisation. The chairman of the organisation is Michael Goldstein of the USA. The logo of the Sathya Sai organization is a stylized lotus flower with the text five human values on its petals. These values are sathya (truth), dharma (right conduct), ahimsa (non-violence), prema (love) and shanti (peace). The logo also has symbols of the 5 or 6 world religions on the petals.

The Sri Sathya Sai central trust was founded in 1972 and is mainly involved in charities such as the Rayalaseema water project. The trust has tax exempt status and is a major recipient of charitable donations from abroad.

The Sri Sathya Sai Books and Publications Trust is the official publisher of the Sathya Sai Organisation. It publishes the international monthly magazine called Sanathana Sarathi. In various nations similar publication trusts maintain in their own native language.

There are many Sathya Sai Baba websites created by Sai Devotees. These sites are not affiliated with the Official Sathya Sai Organization Website. These sites are independent sites that relate personal lilas, stories, information, history, pictures and miracles about Sai Baba.

Books About Sathya Sai Baba

  • Baskin, Diana “Divine Memories of Sathya Sai Baba” (1990) ISBN: 1878599003
  • Goldthwait, John “Purifying the Heart” (2002) ISBN 81-7208-339-4
  • Guillemin, Madeleine “Who is in the Driving Seat?” (2000) ISBN 0-9583617-0-3
  • Hislop, John My Baba and I ISBN 81-7208-050-6
  • Kasturi, Narayana Sathyam Sivam Sundaran Part I, II, III & IV available online in Microsoft Word format
  • Krystal, Phyllis “The Ultimate Experience” ISBN 81-7208-038-7
  • Murphet, Howard Man of Miracles (1971) 0333-91770-7
  • Sandweiss, Samuel H. The holy man ..... and the psychiatrist (1975) ISBN 0-9600958-1-0
  • Sandweiss, Samuel H “Spirit and the Mind” (1985) ISBN 81-7208-056-5
  • Thomas, Joy “Life is a Game – Play it” ISBN 81-7208-175-8
  • Sathya Sai Baba Many online books

Text To Sathya Sai Bhajans

Audio Files To Sai Bhajans

Sathya Sai Baba Links Directory

Sathya Sai Speaks - Discourses

Sai Controversy

If you are interested in the evidence and the truth regarding the allegations made against Sathya Sai Baba, the SaiSathyaSai website is dedicated to providing information to the general public that is not discussed or permitted (and purposely suppressed) by Critics, Skeptics and Former Devotees. Crucial information about sexual abuse allegations, alleged victims and very disturbing facts about the online behavior and attacks of those inimical towards the Indian Guru. All this information gives valid reasons why to doubt the accusations and negative stories dispersed by ex-devotees about the alleged "Sai Sex Scandal". Former devotees have resorted to misrepresenting the facts, twisting the truth and shameless exaggerations. A full expose regarding the online behavior of Anti-Sai Activists, backed up with links, screencaptures and caches.