Monday, 19 December 2016

The Second Coming - Indications of the Sathya Sai Avatar in Christianity

An artist's impression of the second coming of the Christ.
(Actually the advent of the Father of Christ...)
A word on the specialty of Christianity

Being a follower of a Master who emphasizes the unity and divinity of all religions, I go through the various aspects of different religions when their holy days or holidays arrive. So, I spend some time in Christ’s life and teachings whenever it is Christmas, Good Friday or Easter.

Christianity is a fascinating religion in many ways. One of the special things about Christianity is that a lot of information is derived through the writings of the apostles of Christ. The religion offers the aspirant different perspectives or views of the same master, Jesus Christ, through the eyes of many. Thus, we have the Gospel according to Mark, Gospel according to Matthew, Gospel according to John and the Gospel according to Luke. None dare say that one is better than the other for each is the Truth in itself and battling by quoting one against the other, we would be like the blind men fighting over their respective descriptions of the elephant!

Munde Munde Matir Bhinnah”, says my Master and God, Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba who many lovingly call as Swami. In spirit, this translates into ‘there are as many interpretations of the Truth as there are heads’ because everyone is allowed an opinion. So, when I read through the description and interpretation of the same life of the Master through ‘different heads’, rather than get confused and upset at things that do not match my perspective and opinions, I celebrate the grand diversity and beauty of the Master. The Master’s concern is always for the individual and therefore, there are as many ways to God as there are individuals. The Master allows the aspirant to seek a path most suited for him/her to progress spiritually. Thus, I try to enjoy the perspectives and interpretations for none of them are wrong - all are right because ultimately, there is only Truth and nothing else.

The second coming

Among the different things I was reading, one subject that interested me tremendously was that of the second coming of Christ. Why did that interest me?
I would love it if God were to come on earth in physical frame once again! I have been blessed to have enjoyed the proximity of my dear Swami and I know how wonderful, holy, elevating, uplifting, sanctifying and fun Divine company can be. And now that He took Mahasamadhi on Easter Sunday, 2011, I look forward to anything that says anything about Him ‘coming again’!

(My belief that 24th April 2011 is a day of His ‘departure’ was shattered through a miraculous experience that happened exactly an year later - on the 24th of April, 2012. Swami showed that it is a day to mark His ‘arrival’ into our homes and heart(h)s!)

You just have to do an internet search for the term, “The Second Coming” and in a span of 0.36 seconds you will see nearly a billion results hit your computer screen! That should suffice to say that it is an intensely discussed and possibly debated topic. There are interpretations galore. Such was the abundance of the interpretations offered that I decided to go to the actual ‘Book of Revelation’, the final book of the New Testament, credited to the apostle, John. Again, there are so many versions and I referred to the King James’ version of the Bible, chapter 19. What I found there simply thrilled my heart. The reference to the descent of the Father of Christ or the “King of Kings and the Lord of Lords” was so wonderful. (Christ is considered as the son of God by John.)

And here, I shall present these as stated in the Bible and any Sai devotee will immediately grasp the cause of my wonder, thrill and joy. (The relevant passages from the Revelations have been presented in bold.)

The Kalki Avatar in Kashmir.
19:11 And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.

I got goosebumps as I read this. According to the Hindu concept of time and ages, God incarnates from age to age to establish righteousness on earth. In the present Kali age, the incarnation is that of Kalki, a Kshatriya riding a white horse. The similarity of the description struck me and I remembered that one of the photographs Swami materialized was of Himself riding a spotlessly white horse! Many artists and painters have depicted Him that way too!

Swami indeed is here, waging a war - a war like one that the world has never seen before. Swami says that the weapon He has come armed with is that of Love. As He revealed during His Shivarathri 1955 discourse

“In this Avatar, the wicked will not be destroyed, they will be corrected, reformed and educated and led back to the path from which they have strayed. The white ant infested tree will not be cut: it will be saved.”

There is also the reference to Him being called "Faithful and True". The term that comprehensively covers these two terms is 'Sathya', the first word of Sathya Sai Baba!

19:12 His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself.

Does this need any explanation? Anyone who has looked into His eyes has been warmed in the heart with the twinkle there. But still, anyone who has looked into His eyes has come to know of the fiery determination and fire that resides there! It is a ‘scientifically accepted fact’ that the physical characteristics of a person derive genetically from the family. But one close look at the beautiful mop of hair on Swami’s head, you will realize that none in the whole world has hair of that kind! Ah! What beautiful curls! A poet once described them as a million crowns.

The sparkle in the eyes and the 'crowny' hair are there for all to see!

Nobody had the slightest inkling of the name ‘Sai’ when the little boy Sathyanarayana announced himself as ‘Sai Baba’! The identity and name was revealed by Swami when his father, crazed by the miraculous powers of the boy, asked him at the point of a stick, “Tell me who you are?” The name was not given out in a matter of fact manner! The boy threw jasmine petals in the air and they fell on the ground, neatly forming the letters in Telugu, “SAI BABA”.

“What should we do then?” was the question of the stupefied father.
“Keep your houses clean. Worship me on Thursdays”, was the stunning answer!

19:13 And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.

Yes! Swami has worn different colored robes. But any time He wore something in yellow, white, pink or maroon, all of us have clapped and smiled in great joy for it would be an exceptional occasion. The rest of the time, for daily use, it has always been the ‘vesture dipped in blood’! It is interesting to note that it was not Swami who 'chose' to wear the saffron-red robe. In the late 1940s, when hundreds of people began gathering at Puttaparthi during festive occasions, a few devotees requested Swami to wear something distinct in appearance and colour so that He could be easily identified in the crowd. Thus, Swami was requested to wear the 'vesture dipped in blood'.

As stated earlier, His name indeed is the ‘Word of God’ or ‘Truth’ (Sathya). A point must be made here that Sathya is not just any truth. In Sanskrit, it refers to that which is changeless in the three periods of time - Past, Present and Future - and it is only the Word of God that is thus changeless.

19:14 And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.

Countless have been the times when Swami has said, “My students are my property.” These young boys and girls clad in white have often been looked up to for being messengers of Sathya Sai, the members of the Sai Army. (But who is a true Sai Student?)

I feel sad for those that have not come to know of the Second Coming. I feel sadder still for those that are aware but have not made efforts to find out more. I feel saddest for those that neither know nor feel the urge to know but simply criticize and pour out anger and hatred. So sweetly has Swami said,
“Come, see for yourself, experience and then believe.”

If only one could be a bit more scientific even in these matters and allow experience to decide things rather than just an empty ‘theory’ or ‘belief’! I just feel that instead of being irrationally rational, we need to be a bit rationally irrational!

The armies in white - with the students of the first batch of MBA, 1986.
On a concluding note, here is another lovely thought to mull upon. Christ has always been known as the 'Shepherd' and always carried a lamb. In fact, some versions of the story say that He pointed out to the lamb during His final few moments in the physical and said,

"He who has sent me shall come again."

It was during a discourse on Christmas in 1972 that Baba pointed out a very significant thing:

The statement of Christ is simple: “He who sent me among you will come again!" and he pointed to a Lamb. The Lamb is merely a symbol, a sign. It stands for the Voice---Ba-Ba; the announcement was the Advent of Baba. "His Name will be Truth," Christ declared. Sathya means Truth. "He will wear a robe of red, a bloodred robe." (Here Baba pointed to the robe He was wearing!). "He will be short, with a crown (of hair)". The Lamb is the sign and symbol of Love.

Christ did not declare that he will come again. He said, "He who made me will come again." That Ba-ba is this Baba and Sai, the short, curly-hair-crowned red-robed Baba, is come. He is not only in this Form, but, he is in every one of you, as the dweller in the Heart. He is there, short, with a robe of the colour of the blood that fills it.
Personally, am so thrilled to have been part of the Second Coming. And I continue to be so...

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  1. beautiful brother Aravind... though I had heard some of the similarities long back, it was definitely a pleasure to read again... thank you very much for such profound messages... love it...

  2. Sairam Aravind. Enjoyed reading every word of this beautiful research piece from your pen, guided by who else than SWAMI! Thanks a lot for HOLY musings during the festive season.

    1. Thank you Uncle... May every day become holy with thoughts of Him...Keep me in your prayers...

  3. Sairam Arvind, amazing article.. it is life time opportunity to all Sai Divotees to just hold on to him firmly..

  4. Aravind Sairam. Timely published inspired article.Let our SWAMY fulfill our prayer by HIS immense presence.

  5. This sounds very nice, but sadly I think is not based on facts but on misconceptions and myths passed on from devotee to devotee throighout the years.

    Neither Swami's avatar was Kalki avatar, nor Swami left His body on easter (it was on Ugadi) and these verses from the Bible don't talk about the second coming, they talk about aids of God that will come, not about Jesus, so I think these don't refer to Swami, unless one sees Swami as a saint or a messenger of God.

  6. Yes, Swami said that Jesus said that He would come back, but you don't find it in the bible.

    And then the part of the Bible that the article quotes can be left to interpretation if you read it separately as they have it. But as a whole, if yu read the whole book of revelations you'll see that they are talking about one of the messengers and not about God Himself.

    Now, I'm not saying that it is not true that Swami is God, it's just that these verses from the Bible don't support Swami's descent among us.

    The Kalki avatar is even worse. It is said that Kalki avatar would have 8 Kalas and live for 1000 human years.

  7. Sairam brother please write an article on faith in swami

    1. Sairam sister,

      Here is a link of a story I had written before. Please have a look and then reply. :)


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