SRI SATHYA SAI BABA ASSURES US THAT THE INFLUENCE OF THE MIND IS DIMINISHED BY FOCUSING ON GOD during the holy night of Maha Shivaratri, and we will be in tune with the omnipresent God who is always with us. The following experience beautifully shows us the omnipresence of God no matter where we are physically, if only we have the urge to “see” Him.

Many years ago, I was invited to work for an American company as a translator for a marine project. All marine operations were carried out from a diving vessel named after the academician Tofik Ismailov, and I was fortunate enough to work as the interpreter on the ship. However, my shift at sea coincided with the celebration of the holy day of Maha Shivaratri. I was distraught that I would have to be at sea on this very auspicious day. The ship was located about 300 km from the coast, and I was thinking about how I could celebrate this holy night of Lord Shiva. From Swami’s discourses, we know this is a special night when the moon, symbolic of the human mind, wanes and almost disappears. During this blissful night, one can find inner peace and harmony if one contemplates sincerely on God since the illusory effect of the mind is greatly diminished.

Often it can be difficult for us to accept the circumstances of our life, especially when something goes against our wishes and expectations. Swami says, “Love My uncertainty.” His mysteries are beyond understanding. I was upset because I could not think of how to focus on God while I was on this ship. Amazingly, to my pleasant surprise, I discovered that a whole team of Hindus was working on the ship as service personnel. One of them was a devotee of Lord Shiva as well! In a conversation with him, I mentioned my devotion and dedication to Sri Sathya Sai Baba. As a devotee of Shiva, he readily understood that this night was the holy night of Shiva and offered to do puja in my cabin. By the way, my cabin number was SS9, an auspicious number, and a blessing!

“Such is the greatness of our Almighty Lord Sai. He made it possible to fulfill my innermost wish to be with Him on this holy night, despite being in the middle of the sea.”

Swami holding Hiranyagarbha Lingam

My new friend came to my cabin at the appointed hour, set up a small altar for Lord Shiva, and we recited the mantra for Lord Shiva together for some time. After he left, even though it was already late, I decided to watch TV and started watching a Russian channel. Unexpectedly, I saw a program called “It’s hard to be God.” The transmission began with a video clip about Sri Sathya Sai Baba in the ashram at Prasanthi Nilayam. At the end of this program, there was a video clip of Swami materializing the Shiva Lingam during Maha Shivaratri.

I fondly remember the spiritually uplifting feelings I experienced during the mysterious sequence of events. I was overjoyed. My loving Baba heard my prayers and gave me His Darshan (vision of the divine), and He also showed me the emergence of Hiranyagarbha (golden lingam). Mysterious are the ways of God. Such is the greatness of our Almighty Lord Sai. He made it possible to fulfill my innermost wish to be with Him on this holy night, despite being in the middle of the sea. I thank our dearest Swami for His Omnipresence, Omnipotence, and Omniscience.





Dr. Riza Khalilov teaches at the Baku Branch of Moscow State University in Azerbaijan, He holds a PhD degree in Philology from the Azerbaijan University of Languages. His doctorate thesis was dedicated to the Creative Activity of American writer Thomas Wolfe.
He currently serves as the Zonal Coordinator for Communication in Zone 8 of the SSSIO having previously served as the National Council President of Azerbaijan.



First published in  Eternal Companion Vol. 2, Iss. 2