Another Trayee session...
It was a cool summer evening in the city of Bangalore in the year 2005. Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba had arrived from Puttaparthi to the ashram Brindavan, in Whitefield at Bengaluru. After the daily darshan and bhajan sessions in the Sai Ramesh hall, Swami (as Baba is affectionately called) would call the students in for a Trayee session. The Trayee session was a wonderful opportunity bestowed especially on the students and staff of the Sri Sathya Sai school and college though the staff members of other Sathya Sai institutions were also permitted to be present. All would assemble inside Trayee Brindavan, Swami's residence at Brindavan and Swami would usually spend an hour with all of them.
All the students who were seated outside in the hall were tensing their calf muscles for the call could come anytime. All their eyes were riveted to the right side corner door which would open with a teacher signalling the good news that Swami had called the students in for the Trayee session.
Ten minutes later, there was a storm in the calm. The door had opened and the signal had been made. Like a herd of wildebeest crossing the river during a migration, the stage of Sai Ramesh hall and the lawns of Trayee Brindavan were overcome. Another five minutes passed and it was calm again. The only sounds felt were that of hearts pounding partially from the strenuous effort a few minutes ago and partially from the anticipatory excitement of seeing the Lord.
The Trayee Brindavan building is built like two concentric circles. The inner circle on the ground floor forms a central hall and leads to a couple of rooms and the stairway. One third of the outer rim is what is famously known as the jhoola room, the place where Swami’s swing is present. Bang opposite to the door that opens into the jhoola room is the door leading to the staircase. It was this door that was now the focus of all attention.
When we get the chance to seek... what do we seek?
The door opened in one quick swing and the beloved form in Orange stood there, a broad smile playing on His face. He sloly walked across the packed central hall through the passage that had been left for Him. Even as He walked into the jhoola room, the swelling waves of students wiped out the path that had existed a few moments before. Swami sat on the jhoola and the boys in front promptly began to massage His feet. A couple of boys gently pushed the swing. Everyone seemed to fill with a strange peace and joy simply with His presence.
None of us had an idea that we would today witness a funny, yet poignant episode.
Swami saw on little boy sitting in the fourth or fifth line. He must have been 6 years old and had just been admitted in the first standard of the primary school at Puttaparthi. He was holding a letter like many of his much senior brothers around. I wondered as to how Swami even saw him when He called out,
“Ay boy! Come here.”
The boy came to a little above the level of our heads when he stood straight. He simple eased in the gaps between us and went to Swami and offered his letter. Swami took the letter and opened it completely. The paper was the center page of a four-lined, cursive writing notebook. I thought that this might have been the kid’s first major letter in life and he had got it right by writing it to Swami. Swami began to read the letter and some parts of it, He read aloud. Given below is a gist of what the boy had written which Swami read out to us.
“Swami, keep me always with you. Always give me the opportunity to serve your lotus feet. Let me always love you and be with you.”
As Swami read out parts of the boy’s letter, He kept looking at all of us and said,
“See how noble the boy’s wishes are! He wants Swami and nothing else. He seeks only Swami in his life.”
Our admiration for the kid was on the rise and it kept growing by the moment. And then came the climax. Swami said,
“Boy! Come here.”
A broad smile had swept across His face as He asked,
“What do you want?”
There was a moment of silence. And then, with a shrieking voice, the boy said, pointing to his nose, “Swami I have a cold! Please make it alright!”
All of us burst out laughing. Swami’s face also had a smile but He too seemed a bit disappointed after all the ‘build-up’ He had given. He sweetly rubbed the nose of the little boy and said,
“Go! Your cold is over.”
The boy smiled and returned to his place. We were all still chuckling under our breaths.
The session went on. There were a couple of speeches. Swami then received Aarthi and we were all given sweets as prasadam. As we came out, most of us were discussing the incident of the little boy. We could not help but smile at how Swami had been 'let-down' by the little fellow.
And then - it struck!
It was easy to laugh at the child and Swami but has it not always been our failing too? How many times have we approached God and asked for petty and trivial things? How grander are our desires for success, prosperity, health, life and relationships compared to the running nose of that little boy? No wonder that the Lord says, “I give you what you seek so that one day you will seek what I have come to give”.
Is God really our first love?
We all state that we love God and that God is our first priority. But tomorrow, if we lose a relationship, can we still look up to God and say, “God, I love you and want you”, because that is our top priority right? When in a financial crisis, if we seek money, does that not mean that money is the top priority then? Now, imagine a situation where you lose something very close to our heart - self respect. Even when that happens can we look to Swami and say,
"Swami, I still seek you because you are more important for me than my self-respect too"?
Swami has said that God will not give Himself easily to everyone. He will give Himself only to those who want Him as top priority. And that means having the ability to go through the three zeroes test! That test will ensure we seek that seeking which we will never have to seek anything again! For those people, Swami, the Sadguru, promises to give the greatest gift - Himself!
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© 2011 Aravind Balasubramanya
Saipriya Ganesh on September 03, 2018:
Good question whether we actually give priority to swami. Also, I like how you said Swami makes us ask what he is about to give us. I experienced it twice recently.
Sonal on December 09, 2016:
Thanks for sharing...v timely post. Today morning, prayed to Swami with all my heart, to send d best maid in town Was undergoing lots of domestic issues with the previous one. Bhagwaan honoured my prayers. A very pretty looking help has joined us.
The child's priority after reaching Swami, turned to such a petty wish, disturbed me. Reminding me of the same mistake I had done in d morning. Prayers done to give us an expert help? Lots to learn...What to pray? When to pray?
Madhusudanvithal Nori on December 08, 2016:
Sairam Aravind, thanks a lot for the insights from this episode. How often we say that we have surrendered and we want to merge in GOD or we want nothing but GOD, the very next moment we get sucked into this illusory world, our ego, attachments etc.....and our surrender etc go for a sixer. Only right actions over many many births can result in being born as another Prahlada or Dhruva. Food for thought indeed.
Shelly Ghosh on December 07, 2016:
Beautiful !! Thank u for sharing this :)
Staysha on January 08, 2015:
This piece was a lijeafcket that saved me from drowning.
Disillusioned from Kerala, India on November 13, 2012:
Poignant. A thing to remember always.
Mark Aspa on October 30, 2012:
thanks for reminding me of this most important message!
RAMESHBABU BOLISETTY on October 17, 2012:
wonderful. Swamy always with us.
sandhya on September 22, 2012:
wonderful insights ......"We all state that we love God and that God is our first priority. But tomorrow, if we lose a relationship, can we still look up to God and say, “God, I love you and want you”, because that is our top priority right? When in a financial crisis, if we seek money, does that not mean that money is the top priority then? Swami has said that God will not give Himself easily to everyone. He will give Himself only to those who want Him as top priority. And for those people, He has promised to give the greatest gift - Himself! "
thanks for sharing your thoughts...
ajay on April 26, 2012:
really nice.miss those sessions.thanks for sharing.hope we realise what swami has said.
sujathasanthanakrishnan on April 26, 2012:
thanks for sharing this wonderful moments with our bhagwan that boy is very lucky child sai we all love you
sunitha on April 19, 2012:
enjoyed reading this..thank you brother for sharing....
S.Sridhar on April 19, 2012:
HE is ready to give HIMself, our worldly requirements obstructs every time. Swami please take and save us.
Xavier Nathan from Isle of Man on April 07, 2012:
The essence of this hub is summarized in His words “I give you what you seek so that one day you will seek what I have come to give”. Thank you for another wonderful story.
Aravind Balasubramanya (author) from Puttaparthi, India on December 01, 2011:
@ saisarannaga - Thank you for your appreciation and admiration. It is only HE who deserves everything.
@Denise - Students were always allowed to take photographs - especially when HE spoke or interacted with someone. It was more as a memory for that person
@frogyfish - Glad you enjoyed it!
@grandmapearl - Thank you. I feel that all the wonderful things in life are meant to be shared. They get more beautiful then!
@ Anita, theshani Warusavitharana, PoornimaSrinath, Arpita - YOur words always encourage me. I am grateful to God for such a lovely Sai Family
Connie Smith from Southern Tier New York State on December 01, 2011:
Lovely Hub. I thoroughly enjoyed the story and the story behind it. Thank you for sharing. Voted Up and Beautiful.
frogyfish from Central United States of America on November 17, 2011:
A very interesting story. Thank you for sharing.
Denise Handlon from North Carolina on November 17, 2011:
This is a beautiful recount of this experience. I am amazed at your photos...how did they 'allow' photography in this satsang session?
Your words are spoken so true. Seekers often forget to stop and listen-too busy with their own chatter and looking away from their own true heart.
Lovely hub-rated up.
Pooja Digumarti on November 17, 2011:
Investigabiles viae eius!
Sainath on November 13, 2011:
Sairam Brother , thanks for sharing this - This is really apt for me
hema b on November 12, 2011:
let us all remember THE LESSON and this is a reminder thanks son
saisarannaga from Chennai in Tamilnadu, India. on November 12, 2011:
Sairam, as a mysterius coincidence, i was penning about the mode of prayer to God in "Sathya Sai Baba index(in spiritual india organisation forum under the pseudo name 'saisaran'. The contents of the post is what you have conveyed now. Thank you for sharing such intimate experiences with Swami in Trayee season. You students are very lucky and fortunate to have such close encounters with Swami. saisarannaga.
priti on November 12, 2011:
Thank you..indeed a profound lesson for all!!
Anitha Sreekumar on November 11, 2011:
Dear Aravind..thank you for sharing this...any incident with our Dearest Chancellor will clear lots of our doubts...Thank you!
Balasubramanya Subbarao on November 11, 2011:
Lord says, “I give you what you seek so that one day you will seek what I have come to give”.
Whatever happens in our life is for our good.
Arpita Mallajosyula on November 11, 2011:
Yet another answer to my thoughts....anna to me it looks like HE is answering all my queries through your writings...How am i supposed to thank HIM and thank you for this wonderful service you are doing..thank you is too small a word to epxress my gratitude for all that you are doing...I really hope Swami blesses you abundantly with all that you need to get closer and closer to HIM day by day...THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH..!! :)
Anjali Sai on November 11, 2011:
theshani Warusavitharana on November 11, 2011:
my lovely swami again you made my mind... be always with me bagawan... i have learned one thing from this story.. you have given great opportunity to us bagawan.. Thank you for keeping us under you...love you lot bagawan...
poornimasrinath from Midrand, Johannesburg, RSA on November 11, 2011:
Wow...its so crispy, as I read it when it is so fresh..Your recollection of the incidences as though it just happened few hours ago is amazing. I was reminded of the other post of yours ...whether we can ask God or not as He knows what our needs are. He was the one who made the child write the letter as well as made the child to ask such a favour. He entertained you as well as the readers to whom you communicated this interesting incident as usual with profound hidden message. :)
Aravind Balasubramanya (author) from Puttaparthi, India on November 11, 2011:
Thank you Kelly! I too believe the same. No wonder that one is advised to have a friend younger than six and one older than 70! They are the ones closest to God/Love.
Kelly Pittman from South Louisiana on November 11, 2011:
I think children are the most qualified to teach us about love. This a great hub. Voted up and Beautiful.