Thursday, December 25, 2008

Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba

It is believed that the Guru (Spiritual Master) is to be honored as much as the Supreme Lord (God) because of his being the closest servitor of the Lord. This is acknowledged by the ancient scriptures and followed by most authorities. Therefore I offer my respectful obeisance unto the lotus feet of such a spiritual master. The Guru should be accepted as the God. Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba was born as Sathyanarayana Raju on November 23, 1926— or later than 1927 — with the family name of "Ratnakaram" and is a South Indian guru, religious leader, orator. In fact, devotees consider him as the incarnation of God.
Bhagawan Sri Satya Sai Baba was born to Peddavenkama Raju and Eswaramma in a poor agrarian family in the remote village of Puttaparthi, located in Anantapur district, Andhra Pradesh. He was given the name Sathya Narayana Raju. On 20 October 1940 at the age of 14, Sai Baba announced, "My devotees are calling me. I have my work." From then on Sai Baba claimed to be the avatar for our age, i.e. a divine incarnation sent to Earth to bring about spiritual renewal. He has consistently maintained this position ever since.
Swami himself has said that Sai Baba of Shirdi was an incarnation of Shiva and that his future reincarnation, Prema Sai Baba, would be a reincarnation of Shakti. He publicly repeated this claim in 1976.[21] Baba's biography states that Prema Sai Baba will be born in Mysore State in India. Sathya Sai Baba is a prolific orator about religious topics. He asserted that he is an avatar of God in whom all names and forms ascribed by man to God are manifest. He also says that everybody else is God and that the difference is that he is aware of this and others have yet to realize it, which is consistent with advaita vedanta, including modern teachers such as Ramana Maharshi and Nisargadatta Maharaj.

Sathya Sai Baba preaches love and the unity of all world religions and asserts that people who follow him do not need to give up their original religion. His followers view his teachings as syncretic (uniting all religions). He says that he has come to restore faith in, and encourage the practice of the teachings in the Vedas (Vedasamrakshana). Several books and discourses by him, such as the book Ramakatha Rasavahini teach the literal interpretation of Hindu mythology and advocate the practice of Hindu Dharma (Sthapana)
“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 behalf of any exclusive religion. I have not come on a mission of publicity for a sect or creed or cause, nor have I come to collect followers for a doctrine. I have no plan to attract disciples or devotees into my fold or any fold. I have come to tell you of this unitary faith, this spiritual principle, this path of Love, this virtue of Love, this duty of Love, this obligation of Love.”
-4 July 1968, Baba
Sathya Sai Baba is the figurehead to a number of free educational institutions, charitable organizations and service projects that are spread over 10,000 centers in 166 countries around the world.
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