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Sathyasai Memories - Part IV
The same Krishna in different garb!
He needed no formal schooling. But to satisfy his parents and brother, Sathya conceded to undergo high school classes. It is more for granting the opportunity of his connection with his classmates and teachers. The world is not yet ready to accept him and the society treated him as a school boy but with some extra ordinary powers. Hence, the teachers sought his class more often to interact with him. His class mates were lucky, especially his bench mates. The first opportunity to serve the public came as a cattle fair in Pushpagiri when lot of people would gather to watch different varieties of milch animals of the region. Many villagers sought such cattle fair to purchase a cow or buffalo as per their requirements. Many petty shops will be opened to cater for the needs of children, girls and young woman. Since the cattle fair is for two or more days, the need for scouts to control the crowd, supply of drinking water, tracing missing children and other miscellaneous duties. It was a strenuous job. The boys of the high school were selected for the scouting duties and they were asked to make uniforms in Khaki color with scarf etc. Sathya was a poor boy and he was not able to pay the busfare for the trip. Hence, he decided to walk the entire distance of eighteen miles or so to reach the venue next morning. Since he walked all through the night and was hungry, he felt very much tired. He found on the road, few anas(coins) and a beedi packet. He took the coins and went to a nearby place where a man was having a circular wheel with arrow points indicating different numbers. It was betting on a number. The wheel will be rotated with high speed and let to stop on its own. While stopping, the arrow will point to a particular number. Those who bet and win will get twice, thrice or four times as per indication of the number, the coins they put. The other coins will be taken by the vendor.
Twice or thrice, Sathya put some coins on some numbers. To the constraint of the vendor, Sathya won all attempts and thus he could gather a rupee or two. He went to a nearby eatery and ate dosas. Thus he attended the fair and worked tirelessly for all the three days. When others asked him about food, he used to say that he has eaten. Hence he was allotted full work as per other scouts. The boys of the scouting team performed meritorious service and earned a good name in the Pushpagiri cattle fair. This was the first service project attended by Sathya. In later years, he trained many devotees for the service activities and today, the name Sathya Sai is equated to selfless service activities throughout the globe including communist countries where religion is a taboo. Now almost all countries have Sathya Sai service forums in the name of Sathya Sai Samithi which cater to the various needs of society such as free food, free clothing, free blankets, free medicines and hospitalization, free education to the poor sections of society etc. Many countries have mobile medical units to serve the remote villages.
In India, drinking water supply schemes, free superspeciality hospitals, free University education from KG to PG including specialised courses like MBA and MFM etc are taught absolutely free. Students pay only for boarding and lodging which are the minimum. Poor students are provided free boarding and lodging. Hence, the advent of Sathya Sai has heralded a new educational system which integrate human value systems and spirituality as compulsory subjects for all courses. Here students learn the tenets of all Religious philosophies and the life and teachings of various saints and prophets of the world......(to continue)