Bhagwan Sri Sathya Sai Baba
Sathya Sai Baba is a highly revered spiritual leader and world teacher, whose life and message are inspiring millions of people throughout the world to turn God-ward and to lead more purposeful and moral lives. His timeless and universal teachings, along with the manner in which he leads his own life, are attracting seekers of Truth from all the religions of the world. Yet, he is not seeking to start a new religion. Nor does he wish to direct followers to any particular religion. Rather, he urges us to continue to follow the religion of our choice and/or upbringing, and to endeavor to live a life putting into practice the human values of Truth, Right Conduct, Peace, Love, and Nonviolence.
Sri Sathya Sai Baba publicly declared his mission in 1940, at the age of 14. Until he left His physical form in 2011, he daily exhibited in practical and concrete terms the highest ideals of truth, right conduct, peace, love, and nonviolence. He often stated, "My life is my message." During the span of those years, hundreds of pilgrims made their way daily to Puttaparthi, the tiny hamlet in southern India where he was born, hoping for a chance to see him, hear him, and respectfully touch his feet. Seekers came not only from India but from virtually every country of the world. Over the years, followers organized to foster the construction of a variety of buildings and facilities to house and otherwise accommodate the ever-increasing number of visitors. The name of Sathya Sai Baba's ashram is Prasanthi Nilayam, which means "abode of the highest peace".
Even now after his physical lifespan, Sathya Sai Baba interacts with all people on a heart-to-heart basis. There are no intermediaries between himself and those who yearn for knowledge and experience of God. Every day for more than 50 years, Sathya Sai Baba walked among and talked with the spiritual pilgrims who gathered around him in increasing numbers. Even today for people who have never been to his ashram, he offers solace and inspiration to all sincere seekers of truth.
Education. Sathya Sai Baba places great importance on true education for young people, education that fosters the emergence human values integrated with traditional school subjects. Parents and community leaders are urged to concern themselves with the informal as well as the formal education experiences to which their children and young adults are exposed.
He has established a model education system, which includes primary schools, secondary schools, and an accredited university with three campuses, offering undergraduate, Masters, and Ph.D. degrees. No fees are charged to students, and admission is open to all, regardless of race, religion, or economic condition. Inspired by this system of true education, over three dozen Sathya Sai Schools and over two dozen Institutes of Sathya Sai Education have been started around the world by members of the Sri Sathya Sai International Organization (SSSIO).
In addition to emphasizing the pursuit of academic excellence, Sathya Sai Baba's system of "integral education" is designed to foster self-discipline and pro-social conduct. Students are required to take courses on morality and spirituality and to devote several hours each week to some form of community service. Sathya Sai Baba says that "the end of education is character".
Health care. In 1991, Sathya Sai Baba built an ultra-modern 300-bed hospital close to the university and ashram. Highly specialized operations, including open-heart operations and kidney transplants, are performed routinely. There is absolutely no charge to the patient for professional or hospital expenses. Motivated by the desire to serve humanity, doctors, nurses, and workers in the hospital render extraordinary, compassionate, and loving care to all patients. A second "super-specialty" of roughly the same size was inaugurated in 2001. These hospitals have been called "temples of healing", for their medical care in a spiritual atmosphere that is devoid of commercialism. Inspired by his model of healthcare provided lovingly and free, SSSIO medical camps and clinics continue to operate around the world.
Service to those in need. In the 1990s Sathya Sai Baba initiated a project to provide an adequate supply of pure water to 1.5 million inhabitants of the State of Andhra Pradesh (India) who were living in drought conditions. The Prime Minister of India traveled to Prasanthi Nilayam (Sathya Sai Baba's main ashram) in order to inaugurate the project. Sathya Sai Baba demonstrates that it is the duty of society to ensure that all people have access to the basic requirements for the sustenance of human life. The SSSIO continues humanitarian projects in many countries around the world.
Sathya Sai Baba has given his life, selflessly and magnanimously, to the service of mankind.
More information on SSSIO service activites are available in Annual Reports.
If there is righteousness in the heart, there will be beauty in the character.
If there is beauty in the character, there will be harmony in the home.
If there is harmony in the home, there will be order in the nation.
When there is order in the nation, there will be peace in the world.
Sri Sathya Sai Baba, October 28, 1969