My path to Swami began when I was very young. I had the privilege of having a twin sister. For me, life was a gift, and my twin sister and I shared everything. At the age of 27, my sister died in a traffic accident, and that was the beginning of my search for a deeper meaning of life. Whenever I walked down the street people would stop and exclaim "Oh! we thought you had died!", unaware that I am the surviving twin.
In my first interview together with my husband Stig in 1983, I asked Swami "Why are we born as twins?" and Baba answered, "That is not your business, it is something between the parents!” This gave me comfort and an answer so that I could let go of further thoughts about “Why my sister?”
In 1983, my life as a primary school teacher started in earnest. I taught students from first to sixth grade for my whole life, and I started again a new first-grade class based on my new spiritual knowledge. My students were like my children, and their parents were like my family. As a devotee in the Sathya Sai Organization since 1983, I incorporated Swami's message and His teachings in my classes. In 1984, I became an SSE teacher and teacher-trainer in the SSSIO.
Besides classroom teaching, I had the privilege to be a leader of the Remedial Center– a self-governing team with 8 teachers and class teachers. I wanted to combine Swami’s values and His profound message with my duties as a remedial teacher. During meetings with the children, parents, and teachers, I explained the fundamental truth that the source of wisdom already exists and the child has all the values and potentials latent within him/her. This close cooperation with different teachers, parents, and children gave me the opportunity to have a heart-to-heart connection with all. I had the opportunity to be heard and seen by many and demonstrated that Swami’s values and message were part of my daily life.
I served for 33 years as an elementary school teacher. During the last 20 years of service, I developed an awareness of Swami's presence, and I hoped to follow Swami's words, "My life is My message" and further demonstrate that "my life is His message."
It has been a gift to be His instrument throughout my life and teaching career. With Swami's inspiration and support, I have been able to transform the lives of many children who became young people, leading value-based lives. Many of them also came to believe in the Divine.
Experience of Divine Love
In 1984, Stig and I visited Baba again. This time, I got very ill, suffered much, and sought divine help. During darshan, I appealed to Swami mentally, asking Him if I could be relieved of my pains soon. In my mind, I heard Swami reply, ‘Yes, in a couple of days.’
We were staying in the sheds at that time, Stig with the men and I with the women. The sheds assigned for families were unavailable, so we had to stay apart from each other. In the Ashram, we were part of a group of ten from Denmark. Once, we needed to have our visas extended during our stay in India. One evening, along with another Dane, Stig went out to get the visas extended. He returned to the Ashram from the town Dharmavaram after picking up the duly extended visas and passports of all the Danes. Meanwhile, left alone in the Ashram, I had the good fortune to be relocated to a family shed. I wondered how this move could have happened – perhaps because I was ill. But it was odd that only my husband and I got accommodation in an otherwise empty shed. They gave me the key to the shed and told me to lock the door from inside so that no one else could enter.
After Stig returned late in the day, I shared with him the wonderful news of getting accommodation in the family shed. But I felt very weak at night due to the sickness and laid down to rest. I called for help deep within my heart and meditated on Swami to help me bear the pain. Lying alone in the big dark shed by ourselves, both of us had the same amazing, awe-inspiring vision at the same time.
We experienced that the roof opened up, and a powerful white light was pouring in. The light took over, and we saw Swami´s face appear clearly in the expanse of the universe. Divine energy and pure love enveloped us. We experienced and saw that all stars and planets were part of Swami, the entire universe was Swami. It was overwhelming. No sound could be heard, everything was filled with the vibration of Divine Love; we were - in a state of being - with Swami in His majestic universal Divine form. The vision lasted for a long time.
Experiencing the love, vibration, and Divine Love so profoundly, it was permanently imprinted in our hearts. We knew that Swami is the entire universe – the omnipresent Divine consciousness! Then the vision disappeared, the bright light diminished, but we were still vibrating with His Divine energy of pure Love.
Outside, several volunteers, began knocking on the door shouting, ‘What is happening?’ They shone their flashlights through the windows and wanted to come inside to check. We kept completely silent. We were so moved by what we had just experienced and seen that we could not think of anything else.
The next morning, when we came out of the shed, the Seva Dals were looking at us as if we came from another planet. The day before, I was asked by the accommodation office to return the key, and in the afternoon, married couples and families with children were allowed to move into the shed.
Stig and I have talked about this overwhelming experience only once before. We have quietly saved the grace and gift of Swami in our hearts – as a token of His love, and an insight into His omnipresence, together with all other spiritual gifts that Swami has showered on us through the years.
Mrs. Birgitte Meincke
About the Author:
Mrs. Birgitte Meincke has been a devotee of Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba since 1982. She worked as primary school teacher and remedial teacher for 33 years and implemented the human values taught by Swami in her classes for many years. She was also the leader of the remedial center for learning disabilities. Birgitte has been a member of the SSSIO Denmark since 1983 and has served as a Sathya Sai Education in Human Values teacher, both National and International Teacher Trainer, Center President, and National Coordinator for Devotional and Education Wings.
First published in Eternal Companion Vol. 1, Iss. 8
“ There was no one to know who I am till I created the world, at My pleasure, with one word. Immediately earth and sky were formed, mountains rose up, rivers started flowing, sun, moon and stars sprang out of nowhere to prove My existence. Came all forms of life – plants, insects, beasts, birds and men. Various powers were bestowed upon them under My orders. The first place was granted to man, and My knowledge was placed in man's mind. ”
Bhagawan's written message to Shri. R.R. Chatterji of the Sathya Sai Seva Samithi, Calcutta,
announcing the mission for which He has assumed this human form.