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The mysterious Cross!
John Hislop and the Cross.
Yesterday the Birthday of Bagawan Sri Sathya Saibaba was celebrated all over the world in Sai Organizations and devotees houses. While remembering Saibaba, i remember a beautiful episode concerning a Cross and John Hislop. Some of the readers might have read it, but I am not sure. Hence I share this banquet with our readers.
Some of you might have heard the name of John Hislop. But Sai devotees all over the world might have read the beautiful books penned by Hislop. One is "Saibaba and I" and the second is "Conversation with Saibaba". These titles may be a little different since I write it from my feeble memory(I am 68). But one thing about John Hislop is "He was a sincere seeker from the west who came to Baba during 1968 itself and He understood the Divinity in Saibaba in the first meeting itself. From his 16th year, John Hislop was searching about the Reality of life and hence he was pursuing the philosophies of many masters and he was sincerely practicing those beliefs. He has even practiced the "Vipasana meditation of Buddhists. Pardon me if there is mistake in the names. Once Hislop was under the benign protection of Saibaba, Hislop used to accompany Saibaba in many of the tours Baba went inside South India.
It so happened that once they have decided to travel through "Bandhipur forest(near Mysore). They have travelled unto the motorable track. All of them including Saibaba and Hislop alighted from the car and they were trekking the path by foot. Hislop was following Baba. Suddenly Saibaba plucked two small pieces of branch from a shrub. He kept it in a cross like fashion and asked Hislop, "What is this?. Hislop replied politely, "Swami it is a Cross"(Hislop used to call Saibaba as "Swami" as is the practice with many Indian devotees-Swami literally means "Lord"). Then Saibaba closed His fist and blown three times on it. When He opened his hand, there was a minute silver form of Jesus Christ after crucifixion was depicted beautifully. The cross is made of wood and peculiarly it had a hole on the top. Hislop could not believe his eyes since it was a very small cross with the form of Jesus. Saibaba told him, It is an exact repica of Jesus when He was on the cross. His ribs were visible and pulled up. He has not eaten any thing for eight days and it is the form of Jesus as He was on the Cross. It took me a little time to search for the piece of wood on which He was crucified. The pieces have already disintegrated with the base elements and I could retrieve only a little out of which the Cross is made. When Hislop was asking about the hole on the top, Saibaba has said, the Cross was hung from a standard and hence the hole! It was given as a talisman to Hislop. On his return to Maxico, Hislop had shown the master piece to one of his friend, who is a photographer. He photographed each part meticulously and assembled it after enlarging. When they were laying the photo on a table and examining it minutely, suddenly there was a gale of wind accompanied by thunder and lightening which rifted every thing apart and the shutters were opening vehemently and the window screen drifted apart! Immediately Mrs. Hislop told them, "To day is Friday and the time is around 5 pm in the evening. This incident is exactly mentioned in the Bible! She brought the Holy Bible and read the passage. "When Jesus died on the Cross, there was thunder and lightening and the doors and windows of the Church made banging noice. All of them were standstill. They realized that the mysterious Cross manifested by Saibaba is really a powerful one. I feel this is a best tribute I can make by remembering such holy manifestation and the fortunate devotee John Hislop!