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Sai humour - Bloopers in the Divine Presence of Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba

Updated on October 8, 2015
Humour in His Presence...
Humour in His Presence... | Source

Please, please go by the spirit of the article. Nobody is being ridiculed here - only circumstances and situations being relived. :)

Revisiting some of the wonderful Trayee sessions that have taken place over the years that I was blessed to attend, I am reminded of some episodes where speakers suffered from the ‘foot-in-mouth’ disease in the Divine presence! Those errors committed unwittingly, were a source of mirth and happiness as they were made and they continue to be inciters of laughter even today! The episodes are well known in the Sai-student community and it is with some delight that I recollect them.

The most famous among them is that of the devotee from the armed forces. He was narrating about the protective power of Swami’s name. The scene was in a helicopter during the infamous 1971 war between India and Pakistan. In the eagerness to impress the audience with Swami’s mercy on him, he said, “There was firing all around. Bullets whizzed past our helicopter and a few passed through it too.

I just called out, “Sairam, Sairam” and miracle of miracles, the bullet hit my ADC and not me!”

Talk about making Swami look like a biased God!

There was another devotee who was trying to glorify the compassionate aspect of the Lord. He began a talk, “In the Dwapara age, the mother of the Pandavas, Kunti, prayed to Lord Krishna to fill her life with troubles. For, it was only in situations of trouble that she would constantly remember God. In that age, she had to pray to the Lord.

But in this age, Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba is so compassionate that he has gifted troubles made me think of Him even without me praying so!”

Oh My God! How we laughed! And he had a bewildered expression on his face.

This enthusiasm to portray Swami in the highest light often has made people convey exactly the opposite even without them realizing it. There is a devotee who was reliving the difficult times they faced when the floods washed away people and property in the state of Orissa in India. But when it came to conveying his gratitude to Swami, he said,

It is only Swami’s grace that saved us. We all gathered in the home and did bhajans. Swami’s miracle was that all the trees fell on the neighbor’s house!

Then, there is the classic case of an erudite and elderly devotee. He would often make use of high flowing Sanskrit terms and statements in his speeches. On one occasion, he wanted to glorify Swami’s name as, “Maha Abhayakara Sai Naamam” - meaning, that Name which confers fearlessness.

He ended up saying, “Mahabhayankara Sai Naamam” - meaning, that Name which is the most terrifying!

I shall never forget the shocked look on Swami’s face when he said that and the ripple of laughter that came about immediately after that.

The same speaker was once speaking during the Dasara celebrations. He was talking of the glory and story of the Divine Mother. And like any speaker would do, he wanted to say that Sathya Sai and the divine Mother were one and the same. The Mother is also known as Mahishasuramardhini ( one who annihilated the demon Mahishasura). As he spoke, he said,

“And in our presence today, we have Sai Mahishasura ( and stopped to take a sip of water before completing )- Mardhini !”

To those unfamiliar with Sanskrit, the sentence that was punctuated with a sip of water stopped at referring to Swami as the demon rather than the demon annihilator!

There was this student speaker who was narrating as to how he had found a small bird abandoned and helpless. He was prompted from within by Swami to take the bird to the zoology teacher. And unknowingly, he let a statement slip that made everyone put their heads down in embarrassment in Swamis presence,

“I went to the Institute and sir had not yet come. See, he usually is late to college!” Thank God the teacher was not sitting in the audience!

Another student became a little nervous as he spoke. He began to suffer memory lapses. He said, “ this point, I am reminded of a famous story. It is so inspiring that it has become a mantra in my life. The story is.......the story is.......” -

Oops! He had forgotten the story!

But nobody will be able to better me am sure! I was speaking on the occasion of Sankranthi, after the Sports Meet. I began with,

"The annual Sports and Cultural Meet is an annual affair."

As if that was not enough, I began to describe the wonderful programmes put up by the Primary school children.

I said, "These small children, 2 year olds and 3 year olds..."

(They were a minimum 5 1/2 years old!). It elicited hearty laughter from everyone and I did not even realize what was happening! The complete and comprehensive details of that episode is subject of another article!

Long live such bloopers for they fill our beings with joy and laughter.

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© 2011 Aravind Balasubramanya


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      Prema Rathnakumar 3 years ago

      Sairam Aravind, Great. God bless you. You are covering all the matters, which fixes to all our moods. When we are missing Swami, there is a clipping to read, when we are sad, again there is something soothing, when we are lonely and bored, there is the stories of laughter and experiences. Great Job.

      Tks and Sairam

    • aravindb1982 profile image

      Aravind Balasubramanya 3 years ago from Puttaparthi, India

      @Loani - Glad that the article brought some smiles to you in whatever way. . . . :)

      God never fails us...

    • profile image

      Loani 3 years ago

      Oh! I never thought of bloopers happening but why not, if I think of it we have bloopers here at my Christian church too :) As always very thankful for these articles. I was feeling so blue these whole week, brother Aravind. I was just about be done with my day. But before, I decided to spend sometime on my PC. I was hopless already after trying everything else. Then I started reading this article not finding it like really funny (sorry) but to my utter surprise the big miracle: suddenly I started laughing heartily and my blues left. I cannot recall last time I laughed. Thank you Baba, because you do answer and never fail.

    • aravindb1982 profile image

      Aravind Balasubramanya 3 years ago from Puttaparthi, India

      @Pradnya - Thank you. :)

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      Pradnya 3 years ago

      Keep the interesting and funny articles coming!

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      Harish 4 years ago

      super bloopers.

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      E.RAMAMANI 5 years ago

      Hilarious .Can't stop laughing.My younger daughter,who's 7 1/2yrs old says ''MAHISHASURA VARDHINI'' instead of ''MAHISHASURA MARDHINI''.

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      Shruti 5 years ago

      No idea how I had missed this article!….. HILARIOUS!

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      V.Sai Saraswuthi 5 years ago

      Oh My God!!! it's hilarious. I enjoyed every bit of it. Laughed a lot for such a long time.We do make some silly mistakes like these ...when we sit back and rewind we just can't stop laughing.

      The comments section too is hilarious...except for some of them who saw the other side of the happennings. But u mentioned at the start itself right .so nothing to take to heart.


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      Mark Aspa 5 years ago from Berlin, Germany

      very nice...i never had such a good laugh than when Swami joked at my expense in an interview. Everyone laughed of course... i won't relate it as you really had to be there.

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      neena kurkal 5 years ago




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      Iru Sai 5 years ago

      Enjoyed to the hilt :D Waiting for the collecion of your bloopers to come in, Aravind :) The icing on the cake for any of them was - Swami's expressions on hearing them - Out of the world :D Sai Ram :)

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      deepa venkitesh 6 years ago

      sai ram Aravind, hee hee can't stop laughing. Its good to laugh and took me a good number of minutes to stop laughing and write this. do write more. one more thing- whenever I become sad because of certain happenings, swamy takes care to cheer me up through jokes, not once but many times, so its not an offense to laugh at oneself or others

    • aravindb1982 profile image

      Aravind Balasubramanya 6 years ago from Puttaparthi, India

      @ Srividya - That was humorous! :)

      @ Sathya Shivas - Thank you for sharing what you felt.....

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      Sathya Shivas 6 years ago


      One Small Sugesstion though these things are really humourous, but i suggest you that commenting on others, though they kind of made some tongue slips in their conversation at the presence of Swami, they were never intentional in doing that, those were only involuntary, do not comment on these things, i felt that it is degrading the Human Values which Swami Preaches always, do not mistake me for sharing this Suggestion, I felt it from my Heart to Share the Suggestion to you, that's why I have Shared it to you.


      Sathya Shivas

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      Srividhya Sivakumar 6 years ago

      Had a hearty laugh reading the humours posted above :)

      Reminded of a Shakti Wing day when in Swami's omnipresence,the comperer on introducing a doctor who was to speak about heart attacks said thus, "Here we have a cardiologist to speak about heart attacks,reasons and protections. Now SIT BACK AND ENJOY." And everybody laughed. How could anyone enjoy heart attacks!

    • aravindb1982 profile image

      Aravind Balasubramanya 6 years ago from Puttaparthi, India

      @ Spirit Whisperer - Surprised that you of all the people missed the 'spirit' so completely!


      Was not poking fun at any person.....Nobody has been named if you notice......These were instances that Swami enjoyed.....Everyone including the people speaking enjoyed......

      In fact, my next hub is going to be a collection of all my bloopers when I spoke in the Divine presence.....

      I just feel it is harmless fun and not the way you are putting it!!!

    • Spirit Whisperer profile image

      Xavier Nathan 6 years ago from Isle of Man

      I was a little surprised to read this hub which seemed to poke fun at people who had made very simple mistakes. I cannot see how making fun of people can in any way be seen as a spiritual endeavour. In psychological terms these "bloopers" as you put it can be described as Freudian slips and in fact speak volumes of what is actually going on in the subconscious of the person who makes them and not something to make fun of.

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      Naresh Sharma 6 years ago

      Once Prof. Anil Kumar was asked to speak in trayee. He began mentioning some experiences in Prashanti. Somehow he came to an incident where he had to go for darshan and some of his relatives brought him some sweet which is a delicacy from the region he hails from. Prof. Anil kumar began praising as if it was some divine ambrosia. Our mouths began to water thinking what could it be? Bhagawan intervened and described the sweet for our benefit as ' Sweet Poori'.

      A shocked Anil kumar turned towards Swami and instantly prostrated saying " Forgive me Swami, but Sweet poori is a very poor description for that sweet!"

      The whole of Trayee including Swami burst out laughing.

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      Perry Naik 6 years ago

      Reminds me of another student, who was asked to address the summer course students in 1977 and it was probably his first public speaking attempt. He promptly went on addressing Swami as "Mrs. Sai Baba" and Swami had a hilarious time. The fellow never even realized what he was saying even as the whole auditorium was giggling! Perhaps, it was a combination of nerves and unfamiliarity with the English language.

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      saisarannaga 6 years ago from Chennai in Tamilnadu, India.

      Sairam! You have a keen observation otherwise, how you could notice the slip of the tongue correctly and repeat it verbatim here. Swami himself indulges in humor very often.When a devotee whose mind was never steady went to Swami, Baba told him, You are steady in your unsteadiness.Thank you for the variety in your hubs.

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      shobha Menon 6 years ago

      Thank you Aravind for humorous account of what happens when one speaks in the Divine Presence.

      This reminds me of two incidents that took place some years back during the Eashwaramma Day celebrations, ( not in Swami's physical presence, but in his omnipresence). A senior office bearer of the organisation was giving his speech to the parents about the teaching in the classes, and he said, ' children learn the stories from the great Indian epics, Ramayana and Maharashtra !!" ( Can't blame the speaker after all both Mahabharat and Maharashtra start with Maha- !!! A lesson in laughter control was learnt that day.)

      On another occasion, another office bearer in her talk, spoke about the mothers of the Divine Incarnations, , about Mother Eashwaramma the chosen mother to Bhagawan, Kaushalya being the chosen mother to Sri Rama and Sri Krishna being the chosen mother to Yashoda!!!!

      Thanks to all these people who knowingly or unknowingly add joy and laughter to our lives.


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      Sharath koundinya 6 years ago

      SO, the kotlu s finally became bloopers!... Keep them coming barru