Avatar Declaration Day: October 20


October 20 is a very special day for Sai devotees, for it is on this holy day in 1940 that Sainath, who was then in the form of little Sathya (14), announced to the world that He is the incarnation of the Divine Lord Sai Himself. For this reason, the world celebrates this day as “Avatar Declaration Day”.

On October 20, 1940, the young Sathya has left for school as usual but returned promptly. Mimicking Lord Narsimha, who killed a demon at his doorstep, Bhagwan Sathya Sai Baba, stood on the doorstep of His dwelling and made an emphatic announcement:

“I am no longer your Sathya. I am SAI.”

At the time, Swami’s sister-in-law came rushing out from the kitchen and was dumbfounded to witness a divine halo around our Lord. His splendor paralleled that of Divine Krishna when He gave the vision of the whole universe in His mouth.

He addressed her further: “I am going; I don’t belong to you; Maya (delusion) has gone; My Bhaktas (devotees) are calling Me; I have My Work; I can’t stay here any longer.”

The panic-stricken sister-in-law called for her husband, the brother of Swami’s body. When the brother attempted to accost Baba, the latter chided him: “Give up all your efforts to cure Me. I am Sai; I do not consider Myself related to you.”

Immediately thereafter, Baba moved into the garden of the then excise inspector Sri Anjaneyulu’s bungalow. There, Baba sat on a rock, just like He did in His previous incarnation as Shirdi Sai Baba. People started flocking to Baba in large numbers and He gave them the very first bhajan, the one that resonates in our hearts till this very day:

“Manasa Bhajare Gurucharanam Dusthara Bhava Sagara Tharanam “

(O Mind! Meditate on the Feet of the Guru, which will take you across the wearisome sea of Samsara or worldly existence.)

Excerpts from Bhagawan’s Discourses:

In 2002, Avatar Declaration Day discourse Swami recalled His childhood days and shared with everyone His early years. A small excerpt is here:

“The Corporation Commissioner of Bellary and his wife played host to us for three days. They took us to the Virupaksha temple in the nearby Hampi Kshetra. Seshama Raju and his wife told Me to remain outside the temple and keep a watch over their belongings as they would go inside to have darshan of the deity. I readily agreed and remained outside. As soon as they entered the temple, to their utter astonishment, they found Me standing inside the sanctum sanctorum where the deity is supposed to be standing. Seshama Raju could not believe his eyes. He thought, “Why did he come here when I told him specifically to remain outside and take care of our belongings?” He at once came out of the temple only to find Me standing there! He again went inside and found Me there also! Still he was not convinced. He told his wife, “You go outside and keep a watch over Sathya. Do not allow him to go anywhere. Meanwhile, I will go inside and see whether he is still there.” She did accordingly. He again saw a smiling Sathya standing in the sanctum sanctorum. The Corporation Commissioner was also a witness to all this. He recognised My divinity. When they came out of the temple, he caught hold of Seshama Raju’s hands and said, “Raju, do not be under the impression that Sathya is your brother. He is not an ordinary person. You are deluded seeing His physical form. There is divine power in Him.

We came back to the Commissioner’s house, had our food there and started our return journey to Uravakonda. The Commissioner wanted to give Me a gift. He said that he would get four pairs of shorts and shirts stitched for Me. I firmly told him that I would not accept even one. He did not want to force Me either. Then his wife suggested that a gold collar pin would be an appropriate gift for Me. In those days, it was a matter of prestige for children to wear a collar pin. Immediately, he bought a gold collar pin and put it on the collar of My shirt. I protested. Under any circumstances, I never accepted anything from others. But, Seshama Raju insisted that I accept the gift. He said that my refusal to accept the gift would amount to showing disrespect to the Commissioner. So, I obeyed him.

After returning from Hampi, I was going to school wearing the collar pin. The pin dropped on the way and could not be traced. A major change took place in Me. Worldly attachment left Me in the guise of a collar pin. I decided to embark on My mission to alleviate the sufferings of My devotees.”

[Source: http://www.srisathyasai.org.in/pages/ashraminfo/Avatar_Declaration_Day.htm]

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Sai Leela: Power Restored Miraculously


In 2005, there was a severe power failure during a hot summer evening. It was late at night and, much to our dismay, ours was the only apartment that was without power. We were concerned about temperature-sensitive medicines that were in our refrigerator, but despite our best efforts the power was not restored.

Our building superintendent did his best too, but was unsuccessful. Finally, after many hours of struggle, he decided to call an electrician the following day.

Before giving up, however, we invoked Baba from the bottom of our heart. Much to the amazement of our super, and to our delight, the power was miraculously restored the moment we sought Baba’s assistance. Seeing this miracle, the super, too, was awestruck and even to this day he asks us to pray to Baba for his welfare. Strange are the ways of the Lord.

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The Power of the Holy Name


By The Editor, Sai Sandesh

Prema Mudita Mana Se Kaho Rama, Rama…

Chant the divine name with a heart suffused with love. The name is indeed a panacea for all sorrows, and the most powerful destroyer of sins.

Swami has assured us: “Chanting the divine name will destroy even mountains of sins and sorrows, and grant liberation. Do not fear.”

Once a pilgrim reached a forest at night. He found that he had to go through five miles before he could reach a village. He had a small lantern in the hand; he lighted it, but found to his dismay that the flicker could light only a yard ahead of him. How can I walk five miles with the help of this tiny circle of light, he lamented. A wise man passed that way, saw his plight, and said, “My dear fellow, hold that lantern in the hand and walk on. You can go five miles or fifty, and you will always be in the circle of light around the lantern.” A small torch can help a man pass through a thick forest. The instrument may be small, but it can do work out of all proportion to its size. So, do not think that the Name of the Lord is just a mutter of a syllable or two. Though small, through it one can realize the principle of Divinity.

Lord is present where the name is

The Lord announced to Narada (a divine saint): “Wherever my Bhaktas [devotees] sing my glories, I install Myself there.” A house is kept clean by daily sweeping; in the same way constant Naama Smarana will keep the heart constantly clean, pure, and a worthy receptacle of the Lord’s presence and grace.1

Naama Samkeerthanam [group singing of the divine name]

The Names Raama, Hari, Hara, Sai, Baba, Krishna, Jesus, Allah–having each two syllables are all derived from the word Prema [love], which is the essence and core of the Atma [soul]. Love has to prompt our thoughts, penetrate our words and promote our actions. The melody must emerge from the heart, from genuine Love, which is so ardent that it is thapas [austerity] itself. Samkeerthanam from such soulswill certainly liberate the individual and transform the world.2 Chanting the name is so easy, one can even chant while playing, working, traveling, and performing activities of daily life.

The Name

The Name is the container of infinite potence. Even common words denoting things do possess some potency. For example, when the word denoting some thing very sour to the taste is pronounced, you find that your tongue waters. When the word denoting something that is awfully disgusting is pronounced, you are afflicted with nausea. When such is the effect of the pronunciation of common words, what can we say of the tremendous transformation that takes place when the sweet Name of the ever-present Indweller is pronounced! 3

The Name must flow in the mind in an uninterrupted stream. Naamasmarana is yoga [process of uniting with God]; of calming the agitations of the mind; of subduing waves of emotions and feelings. The Naama [name] must always be associated, while intent on the Smarana [remembering, recalling], with the Naami [the Named One]. It is not a mere sound; it is the symbol of a Form, of a Fact. When the branch of a tree rubs against another, heat is generated and in the depths of a forest, fires are started when this heat grows strong. But the process must be without break; breaks only decrease the heat. So, the repetition of the Name must be without break. Then the fire of Jnaana [Realization of Reality] will burn all weakness and delusion. 3

The power

Jnaana Dev and Naama Dev were walking through a forest. They felt thirsty but could not catch sight of a well or a lake anywhere. At last they saw a well and ran towards it. They eagerly looked into it; there was water in the well, but how could they drink? There was neither a rope nor a vessel to draw water. There was no question of somehow going into the well as the well was dilapidated. Jnaana Dev simply closed his eyes. Soon he was transformed into a bird. He flew into the well and drank water to his fill. Naama Dev began chanting the name of Lord with intense devotion. The water level began to rise slowly until at last it was within reach. He just put his hands into the well and drank water. Such is the power of the Name.4

Raamadas revives a dead bird

Young Raamadas [a well-known saint] was once challenged to prove his archery skills. He was asked to shoot down a flying bird; intent on proving his abilities, he immediately shot a flying bird with an arrow. Killing of life, however, is a great sin and a few priests asked him to repent for this deed. Raamadas promptly closed his eyes and prayed to God wholeheartedly, repenting for his sin and asking for His forgiveness. Then he opened his eyes and pointed out to the prieststhat the dead bird had not regained life, in spite of his repentance. The priests, not knowing God’s power,said reprovingly, “How crazy you are! Repentance cannot undo what is done; but its purpose is to enable you to make up your mind not to repeat such misdeeds.”

“That is no repentance in my humble view;” countered Raamadas, “God and His name are so powerful that if we pray sincerely, His grace will bring the bird back to life.” So saying, he picked up the dead bird, hugged it to his bosom, and with tears flowing down his cheeks, he wholeheartedly prayed, “O Raama, if I have been chanting your name with all my mind, heart and soul and if it is a fact that I have killed this bird out of ignorance, may your grace either revive this dead bird, or take away my life also along with that of the bird.”

As he concluded his prayer, the bird fluttered in his hands. Then he opened his eyes, thanked the Almighty and released the bird into the sky. Astonished at this miracle, the priestsexclaimed in one voice, “Revered sir, forgive us for not recognizing your greatness. Since you have the capacity to kill a flying bird with a single arrow, and also the capacity to revive the dead bird, you will hereafter be known by the worthy name of ‘Samartha Raamadhas.’”5

One can chant any Divine Name of any form. It must be chanted with devotion and in an uninterrupted manner. Whether at work, at play, or in the midst of travel, the divine name can be chanted in the mind or aloud with utmost ease. Let us make a firm resolution to hold fast to this easy remedy for attaining happiness.

1. http://www.sathyasai.org/search/volume06/sss06-40.pdf

2. http://www.sathyasai.org/search/volume15/sss15-41.pdf

3. http://www.sathyasai.org/search/volume07/sss07-44.pdf

4. http://beaskund.helloyou.ws/askbaba/stories/s1034.html

5. Discourse on 19-3-1993,  when Bhagavaan gave a detailed account of the life of Samartha Raamadhas, the great Mahaaraashtra saint.

Baba’s Feet Can Save us from All Calamities

baba_feet_osmBy The Editor, Sai Sandesh

Once, Baba called a young boy and said: “Tomorrow afternoon, come and hold my feet. No matter what you see, don’t leave them.”

The boy came to Baba the following day and started massaging His feet. While he was doing so, a demonic lady appeared there and made an attempt to come close to him. The boy remembered Baba’s warning and held on to His feet despite the presence of the ferocious form.

As she tried to come closer to the boy, Baba warned her to back off. She told Baba, “Sainath, I want Him.” Baba replied, “I will not give him to you.” The two continued and she made a feeble attempt to snatch the boy. As soon as she neared Baba, the Lord gave her a hard kick. She flew away from the place and fell on the other side of the wall, only to disappear from the scene.

Baba then explained that the demonic lady was actual the deity of a dangerous disease. She wanted to kill the boy on that particular day, but because he was holding on to Baba’s feet she could not do anything.

Always hold on to Baba’s feet. Only His feet can save us from EVERY calamity.

Surrender to Me; I will Make you Number One

By The Editor, Sai Sandesh

baba_holding_sunIn 2000, I was in the midst of making a life-changing decision. There were two [confusing] options and both would seriously impact my future forever. Not knowing the direction, I visited Puttaparthi to seek Swami’s advice. Every single day, I would impatiently await Swami’s arrival and as He would pass by me, I would hold out my request in the form of a letter. No response. One day, He did take the letter but walked away as if it meant nothing. As days were going by, the suspense was becoming unbearable, and I was getting seriously anxious about the course of action that had to be taken. The deadline was just a few days away and I was unable to make up my mind.

One afternoon, I felt impelled by a strange urge to walk to the ashram’s bookstore. There were thousands of books across innumerable shelves. My hand, almost automatically, reached out to a certain book and opened a random page. Strange! There was the story of a woman who was facing the same predicament as me. She was to choose between two options, each with a serious impact on her life. She, too, tried to get an answer from Swami but Swami would just smile. One day, she just burst into tears and sought Swami’s merciful intervention. “Chant the divine name,” she heard.

She took the advice seriously and resorted to ceaseless chanting of Swami’s name. Just the way butter melts at the slightest contact with heat, her confusion just melted away as if it never existed. I took the clue from the book and started chanting God’s name ceaselessly. I soon realized that there was no confusion and all the apparent dilemmas were nothing but weaved by my own mind.

When you are in Puttaparthi, you stand in one of many lines. Just before darshan, each line is given a token number and those standing in that line would be seated in a row correspondence to that number. Up until then, I was choosing the darshan line to stand in-each day, expecting to be seated in the first row. That day, however, I had tears in my eyes and I said, “Swami, not this way, not that way, but your way. Thy will shall be done.” I closed my eyes and told Swami to guide me to the line He wanted me to stand in. Surprise! I went and stood in a line that won token number one. I was thrilled to have the opportunity to sit so close to Swami.

As if that wasn’t enough, Swami came straight to me that day and stood near me for a few seconds. He raised His blessing hand and assured me of His continued protection. As soon as I went back home, I was in for one more surprise. All the arrangements had been made and the decision I was so strongly fighting to make had already been taken and all the resources arranged accordingly.

God’s Actions are Mysterious but Always Beneficial

By The Editor, Sai Sandesh

swami_blessing“Love my uncertainty,” says Baba. These three profound words are a gospel to those who have understood and experienced their significance. Baba has a mysterious way of bringing out the best outcome from what appear to be life’s most catastrophic and painful events.

Recently, when I was in Puttaparthi I heard the story of a woman who was desperately trying to give a letter to Baba. The letter was an outpouring of her deepest feelings, for she had sought relief from many troubling circumstances and had requested Baba to save her little daughter who was to undergo a dangerous heart operation. When Baba came her way, He took the letter from her outstretched hands, crumpled it, and threw it back at her without even looking at it.

The woman was very disappointed that Baba did not even read her letter but was consoled by others that she was at least fortunate enough to receive something that had touched Baba’s divine hand. She was in for a surprise, though. When she visited the hospital after this incidence a strange miracle happened. The very doctors who had diagnosed her daughter’s condition were discussing a mind-boggling miracle. A series of tests revealed that the child was absolutely normal. There was no need for surgery, since her heart ailment had been cured mysteriously, nay, miraculously. It was then that the mother realized why Baba had thrown away the letter. The outward act of throwing the letter was nothing but an indication that He had canceled the ailment that was troubling the little child. How merciful, how compassionate. Not only Baba, all saints act in this manner.

Once, two devotees, husband and wife, visited the ashram of Swami Nityananda. The two were unable to have children. Every time the wife would conceive, the pregnancy would terminate inexplicably. When the wife was carrying again, the couple decided to visit Swami Nityananda and seek His divine blessings. They dutifully made up a temporary home within the ashram’s premises and would devotedly serve the Master every single day. Much to their dismay, however, the wife lost the baby again and the couple lost all hope.

Someone in the ashram said, “I wish this hadn’t happened here.” At this, the sage calmly replied, “You cannot understand divine mysteries. Due to karmic forces, the same soul was repeatedly being forced to manifest in the lady’s womb. The soul was intent on deliverance (liberation) but was being dragged down due to previous bonds. His desire for liberation was so intense, he was trying to escape birth repeatedly. This time, I dragged them to my feet and as a result of my grace the soul was liberated easily. From hereon, the couple will be able to have children easily.” What appeared to be a tragic event in the human realm was really a beneficial outcome for not one, but three individuals.

A brahmin devotee was a follower of Akkalkot Maharaj (an incarnation of Lord Dattratreya). At that time, the Maharaj used to live on a tree. The devotee would often visit the saint and offer food at the foot of the tree. For some time, the saint accepted these offerings but left to live at another place. The devotee continued submitting his daily offerings, however. Unbeknownst to the devotee, a demon was devouring these offerings daily. Pleased with his devoted service, Maharaj asked the devotee to seek a boon. The brahmin did not have children for a very long time and so he sought a child from the saint. Akkalkot Maharaj (Sri Samarth) said, “A child will come, but he will go away.”

The brahmin’s wife soon gave birth to a son. When the child grew up, the father took him to visit Sri Akkalkot Maharaj’s temple. As soon as they reached within the precincts of the temple, the child became terrified and refused to go closer to the deity. The father persisted, however, and dragged the boy to the sanctum sanctorum, but much to his dismay, the boy died in the Swami’s presence and the father was grief-stricken. Immediately, the saint appeared there and consoled the wailing devotee by reminding him of what he forewarned (A child will come, but he will go away). The Maharaj then explained that the son was really the demon who had partaken of the holy food. By bringing the son in the saint’s holy presence, Akkalkot Maharaj had liberated him from his painful existence. The brahmin finally realized God’s workings and sought blessings to have another child. Due to God’s grace a son did take birth in a very short period of time and the entire family lived happily.

Such are God’s workings. Always mysterious, but always beneficial.

The Guru Charitra narrates the wonderful account of a devotee whom the Lord Dattatreya visited in His physical form. The Lord appeared at the doorstep of the devotee in the form of a monk begging for food. The devotee was not at home and his wife attended to the needs of the Guru. On His way out, the Lord uprooted a vegetable plant that was the only source of meals for the family. When the wife discovered this, she was petrified and wailed inconsolably. The devotee returned to find his wife bemoaning the loss.

He was a true devotee, however, and explained to her the importance of equanimity in the wake of pain and pleasure, both products of our own actions. After the explanation, he tried to replant the tree and in the process discovered a pot of gold that was buried there. Had the Lord not inflicted the momentary pain, could the family have discovered the buried treasure?

Lord Krishna gave a unique demonstration about this truth as well. A brahmin devotee once came to seek His blessings. On securing Krishna’s blessings, the brahmin’s cow (his only source of sustenance) died immediately. Arjuna was by Krishna’s side when this happened and he did not lose the opportunity to question the strange occurrence.

The Divine One immediately explained that He wanted to grace the brahmin with divine blessings, a pre-requisite for which would be unconditional reliance on God. Reliance on one’s own possessions would only hinder the divine blessings that were to fill the brahmin’s life. In the worldly sense this event would be considered a tragedy, but in reality it served as blessing in disguise, for the brahmin’s responsibility was being borne by none other than the merciful Lord Himself.

When we are surrounded by difficult circumstances, we often experience pain and disappointment, but it is only when we look back at the course of events that we realize that all did happen for a good reason, for our own good. Our vision is short-sighted but God has an aerial view of things and so He knows what is best for us and always does what is best for us in the long run.

Do not be Afraid — I am With you

By The Editor, Sai Sandesh

shirdi_saiSwami has a strange way of communicating with His children. At times, he grants visions while at other times he communicates via thoughts, books, or any other form He may deem appropriate. One thing that is sure about these communications, though, is that the devotee will always recognize these communications as direct hints from Swami. The heart just knows when that happens.

During a recent visit to India, I had the opportunity to experience Swami’s omnipresence. A strange characteristic of this journey was that every time I would worry about some impending danger, I would some how come across a picture of Akkalkot Maharaj (an incarnation of Lord Dattatreya) with the following words written underneath: “Do not be afraid. I am with you.” Almost immediately after seeing any such picture, the trouble would just vanish in thin air. I experienced this concurrence numerous times and was convinced that it was Swami who was communicating with me in that manner.

Just one day before my return to US, my father suddenly developed a heart ailment. Most tests run the previous night were not conclusive and were indicative of something abnormal. I was not sure if I could leave him in that condition. My return was necessary, however, and I was in a dilemma. We decided to rush him to the hospital for a final test and while we were on our way I kept hoping that if I could somehow see that picture of Akkalkot Maharaj, it would be a sure sign that everything will be well. It was very early in the morning and since all shops were closed, the chances of that happening appeared to negligible, if not impossible.

God does not need to depend on human instruments, however. Just as I was thinking in this manner, a taxi overtook us, rather unexpectedly. At first, we were shocked at the way the cab driver maneuvered his vehicle ahead of ours-it was very, very abnormal. But my initial shock was soon transformed into relief because the back window of the car had a painting of the very picture I was looking for and the very words I wanted to hear: “Do not be afraid. I am with you.” It was almost as if Swami had made the driver act in the rash manner only so that He could fulfill my heartfelt desire and reassure me.

Needless to say, all the tests suddenly changed from the results that had come out the previous night and my father was given a clean bill of health.

I Want you to Live for Me

By The Editor, Sai Sandesh

dwarakamai_shirdi_saiIn times of trials and tribulations, it is natural for us feel dejected and weak. Baba, however, teaches His devotees to be brave despite the worst of odds and battle even the most trying circumstances all the way through.

A devotee of Shirdi Baba, Gopal Narayan Ambedkar, Poona, was suffering from unbearable circumstances. His life had become extremely painful and no matter what he tried, extreme sorrow just did not appear to leave his life. He tried many remedies and would visit Baba every year to seek His divine intervention. Every time he would plead his tale, The Lord would urge him to have faith and to be patient.

In 1916, however, his cup of sorrow was overflowing and unable to bear the pangs of suffering, he decided to end his life in Baba’s holy presence. With this intention he visited Shirdi and just when he was about to throw himself into a local well, Sagun Meru Naik, a devotee of Baba, came to the scene and asked him, “Did you ever read this Akkalkotkar Maharaj’s life?” Ambedkar casually took the book and as soon as he opened it there was the story of a devotee of Akkalkotkar Maharaj who suffered from an incurable ailment. With the intention of ending his misery, he decided to end his life and just as he was about to do so, the Holy Maharaj rescued him and said, “You must enjoy the fruit (good or bad) of your past actions; if the enjoyment be incomplete, suicide won’t help you. You have to take another birth and suffer again. So, instead of killing yourself, why not suffer for some more time and finish the store of your past deeds and be done with them once and for all?” Why suffer repeatedly?

Ambedkar was moved by this timely warning and decided to cancel his cowardly act. He had understood Baba’s hint through this story and his faith in Baba was confirmed. This time, Ambedkar decided to be brave and with re-doubled faith he started worshipping God and concentrated on improving his prospects. He gained fair renown as an astrologer and was soon able to improve his financial circumstances and lead a happy existence thereafter.

Had Ambedkar followed through with his plan, he would have never been able to enjoy the happy moments that were in store for him.

sai_ba2Swami has a unique way of handling circumstances and teaching life-changing lessons through the most unexpected of circumstances. Once, Swami called one of his young students and said, “What can you do for my sake?” This little child was very innocent and said, “Swami, anything. I will even sacrifice my life for your sake.”

The young lad never expected Swami to capitalize on this comment, though. Swami, however, looked at him and said, “Can you go to the top floor of this tall building and jump down for my sake?” The student was shocked. He loved Swami more than anything in this world and had just given his word that he would unhesitatingly sacrifice his life for the Lord. Now that the Lord had requested that sacrifice what could he do? He mustered all the courage he could and said, “Yes Swami!” No sooner had he said that, he started walking toward the stairs.

Would our sweet Lord ever allow His innocent children to fall in this manner? Nay! Never! Swami immediately ran to His beloved child, hugged him and said, “My sweet child, I don’t want you to die for Me. I want you to live for Me!”

“I want you to live for Me!”-what a profound message Swami gave that day, not just to that student, but to all of us. He wants us to live selfless lives and do good to one and all.

The Power of Thoughts

swami_serving_foodDo you offer prayers before you eat your food?

Baba once narrated a beautiful story:

There was a guru and disciple who visited a fellow-devotee’s house. They were served a sumptuous meal. While leaving, though, the disciple quietly whisked away a vessel from the host’s house.

On reaching their destination, the disciple could no longer bear the guilt and confessed everything to his guru. He also begged the guru to explain why he had behaved in this manner as he was not generally prone to stealing. The guru knew the disciple well and went into meditation to seek an answer to their dilemma.

On awakening from his trance, the guru explained that the host’s cook was a professional thief before taking up the profession of a cook. Although he had given up his bad ways, his thoughts still centered around stealing. The cook was holding on to his stealing tendencies mentally and that was the reason why the disciple, who was still spiritually unripe, was affected by his thoughts.

Apart from expressing gratitude to God, there is a very sound reason for offering food to God before eating. As soon as we do so, the food becomes purified and all subtle impurities (not visible to us) are purified immediately.

In fact, in Puttaparthi, a Kirlian photographer who was an expert in capturing auras took pictures of food before and after it was offered to God (by reciting the Brahmaarpanam mantra). The before picture did not depict any particular aura but once the food was consecrated by offering to God, a distinct blue aura appeared around the food.

When the Kirlian photographer, Dr. Baranowski, asked Baba for an explanation, He said:

“The Brahmaarpanam mantra is a very powerful mantra and that after recitation, the food is converted to prasadam, since it has been offered to God. It further purifies the food and all items around it. That is why the blue aura was found around the plates of food after the mantra was recited.”