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Love is God's only weakness...and our only strength - 2

Updated on October 8, 2015

Have you come straight to this part?

The climax of a story would be no good without knowledge of its settings and happenings so far right?

So, it would be great if you come to this part after reading part 1 at

Love is God's only weakness and our only strength - Part 1


Does the second hatched plan succeed?

..... Now, I was fervently hoping and praying that Swami would accept my letter. As Swami completed the supervision and was returning, He saw all of us seated along the path. He said out loud,
“I shall go to PC from the other path!”
“NOOO SWAMIIIIIIIIII......” we screamed at the top of our voices.
“To avoid me, He is going by another path”, I thought.
“SWAMI, PLEASEEEEE SWAMI” - another shout reverberated.

Swami smiled and turned to enter our path. I heaved a sigh of relief. As Swami came near, I did something very brave and desperate. I got up and blocked His path with the intention of not letting Him pass till He took my letter. He looked at me and said, “Dunnapotha” (meaning he-buffalo in Telugu). I was thinking
“Call me all you want Swami. I am not budging till you take this letter.”

He had about twenty letters in His hand already. Still, He took mine and then I allowed Him to pas. I was happy and relieved. Swami then moved slowly through all the boys, collecting almost all their letters. BY the time He reached near the entrance of His residence, behind PC, His hands were full of letters. He went into the door and the door closed behind Him. All of us immediately rose to rush into PC for Swami would be arriving there in about 5-10 minutes. As we were all getting up, one of Swami’s security guards came calling out to all of us.

He said that as Swami was entering the door, He had dropped one letter and then gone in, closing the door. Even as He said that, I had a sinking feeling in my stomach. I went to the door and there lay my letter! It had been cast out - a refugee that sought to get back into my pocket. I felt like a fool and began to tear the letter. A senior patted me on the back and tried to help saying, “Brother! The letter has been folded too small. Maybe, it slipped out of Swami’s hand. Try again later. Swami will take it.” I was in no mood to listen. I had been defeated in a smashing manner.

After that day, somehow or the other, I never took that photo for signing.

The climax?

A month or two passed. The work in Kulwant hall was complete and it was reinstated as the darshan venue. My photo was still unsigned and I gave up on that idea totally. So many things happened in the months that passed - many experiences, many lessons. Fast forward to January 2000. The Sports Meet had concluded and I had been able to capture one lovely picture of Swami smiling and blessing the crowds that had gathered. The desire to get a photo signed by Swami re-ignited with this photograph.

The birthday boys now sat in the lower veranda of the bhajan hall, just outside the interview room. Since I was a photographer, many students who were celebrating their birthdays took a permission chit for me too so that I would capture the special moments when they were being blessed. I carried a series of six photographs with the objective of getting them signed atleast now. And then began the next part of the struggle. Swami would sign photographs about twice a week on an average. But every time I thrust my photo, Swami would say, “Ay! Not birthday boy.” This became so frequent that the student who used to walk behind Swami, one day reprimanded me, “Do not keep bothering Swami daily like this. If you do so, I will ensure that you are not sitting here!”

“As if His neglect was not enough, He was releasing His ‘goons’ on me”, I thought! I suddenly felt the futility of all my efforts. I just prayed to Him saying that I was ready to wait until He signed my photograph at His pleasure. The month changed into February and I continued to sit near the birthday boys, taking their pictures as Swami blessed them, hoping that one day He would sign my photograph. By now, I had dropped most of the photos and was carrying only the photo of His Sports Meet blessing with me. It was a small 7 inches by 5 inches picture.

On the 8th of February, 2000, Swami completed the darshan rounds and arrived into the veranda of the bhajan hall. There were two tiny tots from the primary school and Swami was so happy seeing them. One of them gave Him a picture to sign and Swami happily took the picture and signed it. And then, He asked,
“Only one photo?”
The little guy turned the pages of a book he had got and pulled out a photograph. Swami took that and signed it and I thought, “You lucky dog!”
“Only two photos?”, Swami asked, liberally sprinkling divine salt on my ego wounds.
Now the little guy rummaged his pockets and pulled out a small, crumpled picture. Swami took that and signed it too!

I was wondering,
Mera number kab aayega (When will my time come?)”
I sat still. Swami took a couple of steps near me. The pen was still in His hand and He was looking at me. I was tempted to rise but the look of Swami’s ‘goon’ behind pressed me back to my seat. And then, He spoke,

“Don’t you want to get your photo signed?”
Like a coiled spring, I surged ahead and gave Him the photo. He smiled and said that if only I had brought a writing pad along, photo signing would have been so much easier.

I had been getting the writing pad and a book almost daily and today was the only day I had forgotten!

Swami then supported the photo on His left forearm and signed, “With Love Baba”. Then looked at me and asked with His eyes, “Only one?” I nodded for that was the only picture with me. He handed the picture to me and moved into the interview room. I looked at the ‘goon’ and He was smiling broadly at me. I felt so happy! The wait now seemed worth every single moment.

I vowed never to try to outsmart God! Just love Him and He will oblige and do what is best for me always.

The climax!

The photo that Swami signed for me is in my altar, laminated. A few years ago, it had fallen on to the lamp and part of the photo had got burnt. But, no part of Swami in the picture had been singed.

And now, for a super thriller. This article was being written after I had received some harsh criticism from people who said that I should not keep 'doling' out personal stories like this on HubPages. I had prayed to Swami and told Him that He knew everything - and that included my motives in writing hubs regularly. And then, I started writing this hub. I had just started writing this article when Pooja, my wife called me up excitedly.

She wanted me to rush home from the studio immediately. She had started reading the Shirdi Sai Satcharitra on 15th March 2012, a Thursday. On completion of the first chapter, she placed the book down and closed her eyes in love and gratitude to Swami. When she opened her eyes, the book was full of vibhuti! I saw the book and was marveling at it. I told her that her reading had indeed been sanctified.

I went to the altar to thank Swami for that beautiful miracle and lo! There was also vibhuti on the very same photo about which I was writing the article! I knew that Swami was happy with me writing this article and with me writing about Him too!

The photo which Swami signed...which later fell and got burnt...(note that no part of Him has been touched) which had vibhuti appearing on it in March 2012
The photo which Swami signed...which later fell and got burnt...(note that no part of Him has been touched) which had vibhuti appearing on it in March 2012 | Source

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    • profile image

      Anonymous 16 months ago

      Dear Brother,

      I will be indebted to you forever for writing these blogs. I'm so glad you didn't crumble under pressure & stop writing! I spend a lot of time reading on my phone & it's so hard to find such heart touching stuff to read. So thanks once again for providing solace in stress filled lives.

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      piyu b 3 years ago

      Straight from the your inimitable style which makes the experience so very endearing :-) 'Goons' is the perfect word,no need to even justify what comes naturally. Mera number kab ayega ehoes your sentiments beautifully. Loved it!

    • profile image

      santhamugundan 4 years ago


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      Gayatri 4 years ago

      Sai Ram. Bhaiya, reading about your experiences has brought me closer to my Swami. Sometimes I felt that Swami was somehow not blessing me (the way I want), but now my perspective has changed. Please continue to write. Thank you.

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      Kokila Vaidyanathan 4 years ago

      Wonderful narration.. You have a great gift narrating your experiences...I feel like being part of that experience. I am sure Swami is very happy with your work for the Swami in us enjoy reading it...Sairam

    • C.V.Rajan profile image

      Disillusioned 5 years ago from Kerala, India

      Interesting and frank narration!


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      Lakshya 5 years ago

      Wonderful narration. You have the gift of making the whole scene with the Lord come alive.

      There are many who have experiences but few can express them so movingly. You have a rare gift. KUDOS to you, 'lucky dog'!

      Please do not change your style of writing. I'm sure even the 'goons' wouldn't want you to!!

      As far as the critics are concerned, they still live trying to imprison the OCEAN in a bottle ... :)

    • aravindb1982 profile image

      Aravind Balasubramanya 5 years ago from Puttaparthi, India

      @ Mark Aspa - Thank you so much for expressing your heart. It gave me great joy, courage and strength to read it.

      @ Mrs Divya Bhoojhawan - I shall definitely do as He inspires me from within. Your comment is much appreciated.

      @ Ramu GSV - Appreciate your sentiments. At times, I too feel that some words should be modified but at other times, I feel that I should let them be as they came out from within.

      I guess being honest in expression and being tactful in expression sometimes do not overlap completely and the line we draw depends on our individual boundaries.

      Thank you for expressing your heart.

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      Ramu GSV 5 years ago

      Wonderful writeups. Continue as everyone loves it. Probably "goons" should have been replaced by a word like "army" and "you lucky dog" could have been avoided some milder term used. Anyway the spirit behind is known and appreciated.

      Continue the good work.

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      Mrs Divya Bhoojhawan 5 years ago

      Hello, I was born in Trinidad, West Indies but I live in Virginia, USA - please keep writing. You and Radio Sai are the links that keep me and my husband in touch with GOD/ BABA. Never mind what critical comments you may get. These people do not live geographically far (from Prashanthi Nilayam) as we do, and they do not realize how grateful we are.

      And how can you not share these sweet moments of God with your sisters and brothers. We look forward to your writing - please continue. SAIRAM, and thank you.

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      Mark Aspa 5 years ago

      Maybe those 'against' are trying to perpetuate the code of privacy and respect for Swami that existed while He was blessing us on Earth. This protected and maintained the ability to have 'closeness' to Swami for the fortunate ones.

      But now alas, Baba's Form is no longer with us and so the 'closeness' and surely its protocols have also lapsed.

      So now it seems that your experiences, sweet and personal, gifted to you by Bhagavan, are held between you and He, and it is between you and He whether you share them.

      It is nobody else's business. It is you that shall reap the karmic reward or ill from this sharing.

      Perhaps those against are motivated by love for you and fear you have done wrong. Please love them just the same as you love us who admire you and wait for your sparks of Sai-light to come to us.

      Swami wants us to go beyond praise and blame - i know i have not managed this!

      But should these sweet accounts lie forever in the circles of those who were able to be 'close'?

      I believe that precious stories and experiences held by people physically close to Swami, should be shared and immortalised in print for the benefit of those not so fortunate. How else are we to know how Swami, the Incarnation of Divine Love, really moved, spoke and acted, except through people who were physically close. And yes, in time, those unique, unprecedented Love-filled and Wisdom-prompting experiences will be lost forever, if not shared!

    • aravindb1982 profile image

      Aravind Balasubramanya 5 years ago from Puttaparthi, India

      @ Subramani - Thank you for your heartfelt expressions. I shall strive to share as much as possible!

      @ Vishwanath Sanam - Without a doubt I shall be writing regularly! :)

      That is what Swami desires from me and that is why He is inspiring them from within!

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      viswanath sanam 5 years ago

      and may will have more number of people harsh at you,if u stop writing these things,brother..many will hope u will continue to sprinkle all the experiences on us.

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      Subramani 5 years ago

      Good one, i also enjoyed, laughed and cried how, swamy is testing his loving childs, such a additional blessing towards your family, its like, you have just asking him for payment, but he sanctioned big bonus like double than your expectation, that is reward for your waiting, which is also a nice experience, humbly putting my love and everything at the lotus feet, praying him to study & enjoy about his love like these, which you get, we dont get,

      sayee ram !!

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      Aditya 5 years ago

      "goon" thats hillarious!

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      Mr. Happy 5 years ago

      Thank YOu again for the explanation Mr. Aravind. All the very best! : )

    • aravindb1982 profile image

      Aravind Balasubramanya 5 years ago from Puttaparthi, India

      @ Mr.happy - Vibhuti is holy ash which serves as a reminder that nothing in this world is permanent because one day, everything returns to ashes! It is considered holy and applied either as a dot or a stripe on the forehead in rituals and worship. This ash is perfumed and flavored at many places. However, the ash that Swami materializes has a unique flavor and perfume of its own.

    • Mr. Happy profile image

      Mr. Happy 5 years ago from Toronto, Canada

      He looked at me and said, “Dunnapotha” (meaning he-buffalo in Telugu). - This made me laugh! I think You and I have or had some things in common. Haha!!

      Another great article!! I love your stories.

      Out of curiousity, what does vinhuti mean?

      You have a great day Mr. Aravind! May the Light always shine on You!

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      krishna 5 years ago

      I would like to be a form boy

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      Sreenidhi 5 years ago

      Truly,there cannot be a title more apt for this. Iam very happy to be reading this for this is blessed(with a proof) by Him. Jaisairam anna and please do convey my jaisairams to your wife too :)

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      Amit 5 years ago

      Sairam brother,

      It is swami's style of give his bless to every one...that is from one soul to here he gave the message from you to us...lovely..jai sai ram.

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      Hemanth 5 years ago

      Very well written. Took me back many years.

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      Shruti 5 years ago


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      S.Sridhar 5 years ago

      Excellent Arvind. Keep us alive in HIS Bliss...

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      Linda M (Australia) 5 years ago

      Beloved Aravind, the greatest gift of grace He has given you is the ability to share your very close encounters in a riveting, engaging manner...involving my every breath, the experience becomes mine...then the bliss..infinite love and gratitude, you are truly His Divine Instrument..Congratulations and Blessings to you both on your marriage..Keep the nectar flowing!

      Jai Sai Ram.

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      priti 5 years ago

      ..your experiences are indeed superb nd we too get to learn so much from them!!..blessed is your wife too for such an awesome experience!!.. keep writing..

    • aravindb1982 profile image

      Aravind Balasubramanya 5 years ago from Puttaparthi, India

      @ Raevyn14 - I agree. But deep down, all the virtues and good qualities are a manifestation of Love alone....

      Thus, the root is love

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      Saisanty 5 years ago

      Excellent.....thanks for was thrilling....

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      Sridevi 5 years ago

      Brother words cannot express what is going on with me right now! Thr' this article HE has blessed me as well! Jai Sairam!

    • Raevyn14 profile image

      Raevyn14 5 years ago from Tecumseh, Oklahoma

      Love isn't the only strength we humans have. We have others, we just need to do some soul searching and find others

    • poornimasrinath profile image

      poornimasrinath 5 years ago from Midrand, Johannesburg, RSA

      Lovely..seems like He has blessed both of you. Swami's wedding gift has come to your door steps!Aravind I have a strong belief that each realized experience is a help tool for some one else reading it. Do write in frequent creates a big void when I do not read some article of yours..there are days I re-read the old ones :)

    • vaishnavi rao profile image

      vaishnavi rao 5 years ago

      Anna “Dunnapotha” he best name that HE gives us!! the LORD himself asks for his photo to be autographed!! outsmart God truly not possible. and vibhoothi the best thing HE gives us!!! anna too good!!

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      Aarthi 5 years ago

      Awesome bro! What a finale!! Swami's blessings are so abundant on you and Pooja, which is evident from the Vibhuti manifestation. :) So happy for you! And glad that we too get to share in the joy through these blog posts of yours.

      By the way, you do make me forget myself and laugh out a lot with your humorous lines.

      The foll. 2 lines made me laugh so much!

      "As if His neglect was not enough, He was releasing His ‘goons’ on me, I thought."

      "Mera number kab aayega (When will my time come?)"


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      himanshu 5 years ago

      just tooo good.......

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      deepa venkitesh 5 years ago

      wow, Aravind, lived through this as well, keep writing and give my regards to your wife. stay blessed, sairam