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  Volume 4 - Issue 10 OCTOBER 2006
 
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UNFORGETTABLE MOMENTS WITH SAI

RECOLLECTIONS OF MR. CHIDAMBARAM KRISHAN, PART 8


This is the eighth installment of the wonderful recollections of Mr. Chidambaram Krishnan, a long-time devotee of Bhagavan Baba who came to the Lord under somewhat unusual circumstances. In the previous episode [07], we ended with Swami dramatically saving Mr. Krishnan from murderous assault, literally at the last minute.

In this, the eighth installment, Mr. Krishnan recalls a more recent and poignant incident concerning a serious leg injury, how he escaped from a Nursing Home where he had been admitted for amputation and dragged himself to Puttaparthy and what happened there. Read on.

Previous Articles In The Same Series

From Assassin to Able Guardian

Having transformed in a second, expressed remorse and having promised that he would protect me during my entire stay in Ceylon, my driver Jaffer went inside to have a wash. Meanwhile, the Local Manager and his staff came back and were trying to peek through the window to see what was happening inside. The Manager saw me and asked with surprise, “What! You are still alive?” I retorted, “Do you mean to say you want to see me dead?”

At that instant, Jaffer came into the room, and seeing the Manager yelled, “You evil fellow! Even if we were misguided and wanted to attack the boss, how could you so selfishly abandon him?” Jaffer was so mad that he actually wanted to beat up the Manager but I prevented him from doing that.

I was in Ceylon for nine days during which period Jaffer took care of everything – driving me around, bringing me food, having my clothes laundered and so on. He was really very helpful.

After I returned to India, I went to Puttaparthy. Swami innocently asked me [as if He knew nothing], “What happened in Ceylon?” I just said, “Swami, how do I describe Your Glory and Power?” He just laughed. What an amazing drama it was. One moment I was about to be killed, and the very next moment the gang of four that came to finish me off were all full of remorse. And Jaffer Ali, the ringleader, was at my feet, sobbing away and pleading for punishment. Incredible. It seemed as if Swami had pushed me to the edge of a precipice and when I thought that even Swami had abandoned me, He pulled me back. The message was: “Son, do you think I would abandon you like that when I had given you My word that I would protect you?”

 

All this is clearly stranger than fiction. I went into the details just to illustrate how dramatically Swami can bring about a miraculous change, transforming a potential murderer into a friend, in a fraction of a second. There are so many such instances I can recall.

The Trademark Leela

Let me now tell you about the Trademark business. You remember when I went to Swami in Puttaparthy I told Him, “Swami, You have asked my brother not to go to Ceylon for the Trademark renewal. But Swami, if the Trademark has to be renewed, then my brother has to physically go there and sign all the relevant papers himself. That is mandated by the laws of the country. I cannot sign for my brother. If my brother does not go, what happens to the Trademark renewal?” Swami had replied tersely, “Leave it all to Me. I shall take care of the Trademark problem.”

 

When I was in Ceylon, after the change of heart of Jaffer, I tried calling my brother in India by phone. Those days, long distance phone calls were very difficult to make. And where India/Ceylon phone connection was concerned, there was an undersea cable that was especially unreliable. For one whole day, the cable was out of order and I could not book a call to my brother. Next day, I tried booking a call again. I waited for three hours before the call came through. I told my brother all about the Jaffer incident. My brother was overwhelmed and said, “Swami has showered His Grace in an amazing manner. He stopped me from going. In your case, He allowed you to go but saved your life. If Jaffer has transformed, it is a miracle. We owe an infinite debt to Baba.”

I then said to my brother, “Let me now come to the Trademark business. What is the latest?” My brother said, “Oh that! I wanted to tell you but forgot when we started talking about Jaffer. You know something? Normally, there are so many formalities involved and even after signing in person, the renewal order takes about nine days to be issued. In this case, I just don’t know what Swami did but believe it or not, the renewal order is actually with me, without my having to go to Ceylon and signing all the papers in person. I simply can’t imagine how it has happened, but I tell you, it sure has.”

When I heard this, I too was amazed. When I discussed this matter with Swami, He warned: “Don’t be nosey and go to the Trademark Office in Ceylon to make enquiries. Just mind your business and leave everything to Me. Understand?” Well, I must confess I do not understand how He did it, but it was a fact that He did.

A Serious Injury

I shall now narrate an incident that happened in January 2003 at Makarasankaranthi time [mid-January]. This too is an amazing experience. Ignorant people sometimes tell me, “Your Sai Baba seems to pay attention only to rich devotees.” My reply has always been, “Look, I am no longer a rich man now. In material terms, I am simply not in any position to make any big donations or offer any big things to Swami. Nor am I a highly qualified man who can render specialized service to Swami. And yet, Swami does so much for me, even now, when I have lost all my wealth. How do you explain that?”

Just to substantiate this statement, let me now describe how Swami saved me yet another time from a very gruesome fate. It all started the day after Sankranthi. My son Manohar had a small house in Tirunelveli that he rented out. Two months prior to Sankranthi, the tenant vacated the house. There were many plants in the compound but since there was no one to water them, they began to wither. I went to Tirunelveli and when I saw the plants drying up, I began to water them myself. I did so for four days. On the fifth day, I could not do the watering because there was no electricity to run the pump – there was a power cut.

I went back at night when there was power and started watering the plants. I did so for a long time and it was 3:30 a.m. when I was through. I was satisfied and happy. That was when I saw a plant full of beautiful hibiscus flowers. I said to myself, “Why not collect some of them for Puja?” So saying, I went to that plant and started plucking flowers. It was still quite dark, and I could not see clearly. As a result I slipped and fell into an eight-foot deep ditch, full of water pipes sticking out here and there. As a result of the fall, I was badly injured and suffered many fractures. It was just horrible and painful too.

Somehow, I managed to pull myself out of that ditch – I simply do not know how; but I was out. I then discovered that my feet were so badly injured that I just could not move anymore. I was stuck there, wondering how I could make it to my son’s house. It was now around 3:45 a.m. Just then, by God’s Grace, an auto rickshaw came that way. I signaled to the rickshaw to stop and told the driver, “Please can you take me and drop me off at my son’s house?” He wanted to know where the house was and I gave the address. He took me to my son’s house and dropped me off. Seeing my condition, he refused to accept payment. He could see huge blood stains and that I was badly injured.

My son was shocked to see my condition and rushed me to an orthopedic doctor. The doctor examined me and then told my son, “Your father has a sugar problem. I am afraid I cannot treat him. Take him to a more experienced doctor in town.” But that did not help and my son started phoning the big hospital in Vellore and also clinics in Madras. A doctor in Madras said to my son, “Bring him by flight to Madras to my clinic.” So they took me to Madras but that did not help me in anyway. In fact, the treatment that the doctor gave made my condition worse.

My condition was deteriorating and the Madras doctor told my son, “I am afraid I have to amputate the leg; if that is not done, your father’s life will be in danger.” When I heard this, I was taken aback. I simply could not consider a life without my leg. My sons assured me, “Don’t worry, father, we are there to take care of you. You mean a lot to us.” They applied a lot of pressure on me to agree to amputation but I was not too keen about it. Somehow, I wanted to live and with my leg. Finally I said, “OK, we have discussed it. Now all of you go to the hotel where you are staying and come back in the evening. We shall talk more then.” My sons then left, leaving me to rest.

Engineering an Escape

Some time after they departed, I managed to drag myself out of the Nursing Home to which I had been admitted and came out to the road. It was around 4:30 p.m. I checked my pocket and found I had exactly 375 rupees. I signaled an auto rickshaw. I told the driver, “Take me to the Interstate Bus Stand.” The driver took a good look at me. He knew I had been admitted by my sons and was in no condition to travel. He replied, “Listen, I normally ply from the auto rickshaw stand near this Nursing Home. If your sons find out that I took you to the Bus Stand, they will ask me, ‘Just because that old man asked you take him to the Bus Stand, how dare you take him there in the condition he was in?’ How can I answer that? What reply can I give? They would simply finish me off! If I were to take you to the Bus Stand as you say, it would be a very bad thing and not good for you. Besides, the doctor here knows me very well. Do you think he would approve of what I did?”

I patiently listened and then said, “You know, all these people want to cut my leg off. If I stay here, my leg will go and I do not want that. I have tremendous faith in Sai Baba and I am sure if I go see Him, my leg will be saved. Actually, even if I die there, it does not matter. But this much I am sure of: I simply do not want to live with my leg cut off.” The auto rickshaw driver said in reply, “Frankly, I am confused and caught in two minds. On the one hand, I am scared of your sons and fear they may beat me up. On the other hand, when I hear you talk, I am full of pity and want to help you. OK, come what may, I shall take you to the bus stand. May God protect me.”

 

I was thrilled and said, “I shall pay you whatever you ask.” He grunted, “It is enough if you pay me a hundred rupees.” I was happy to hear that because as you know, I did not have a lot of money. In fact, all the time I was praying to Swami that the driver would not demand an unreasonable amount. After all, I needed enough money to go to Puttaparthy. I did not bother about what would happen after reaching Parthi; at that moment, my mind was focused entirely on somehow reaching there. I had the blind faith that once I reached Parthi, things would somehow work out.

The Bus to Puttaparthy

To continue with my story, the driver took me to the Interstate Bus Stand and most kindly put me on the bus to Puttaparthy. Many in the bus were aghast when they saw my condition. They asked, “What do you mean by traveling with your leg in this horrible condition? Sai Baba is so busy. Do you think He will have time for you and your problem?”

 

I simply replied, “With all the problems and the uncertainties, I prefer to go to Puttaparthy than staying at home. I have infinite faith in Sai Baba.” The co-passengers were not at all convinced but remained silent thereafter.

The bus reached Puttaparthy and somehow I managed to get out of the bus. I dragged myself to the Accommodation Office. Luckily, they did not notice the condition of my leg and gave me a place in shed number 26. Painfully, I dragged myself to shed 26 (picture on the left). The moment they saw me, the inmates there became both scared and angry.

They said, “Listen! You ought to be in the Hospital! What do you mean by coming here?” I did not reply. I simply withdrew to a corner and lay down. Sometime later, I dragged myself to the bathroom, cleaned myself and managed to crawl to Darshan. The pain was unbearable but I did not allow even a gasp to escape my lips.

Suffering In the Shed - A Test of Faith

Days slowly passed – one, two and then three. Meanwhile, not only did the swelling in my legs increase, but more disturbing, a foul odor started emanating from the wound, which obviously had become badly infected. At that time, a North Indian volunteer was in charge of that particular shed. He came to me and said, “Hey you! Your leg is in a pretty bad shape. Tomorrow morning I am going to have you admitted in the hospital here. What do you mean by staying here in this horrible condition? Don’t you realize if something were to happen to you it would tarnish Swami’s name? So tomorrow you are going out of here to the hospital.”

Those words were like daggers to me. Silently I prayed, “Swami, I came here to save my leg but it looks like I am going to lose my leg here instead of losing it in Madras. I will wait till the morning. If the swelling does not come down, somehow I shall drag myself to the Chitravati River and go to an obscure corner. There I shall lie without food and water and allow my life to ebb away. I am determined to do this.”

 

The Turning Point

Thinking and resolving thus, I dozed off to sleep. It looks like Swami heard me. He probably said to Himself, “This mad fellow is even capable of doing exactly what he says.” Around 3:30 a.m. I woke up. People were already up and there was quite a bit of activity. I looked at my leg; and miracle of miracles, the swelling had come down by half. I managed to go to the Volunteer in Charge and said, “Please take a look at my leg.” He did and was stunned. He murmured, “How is this possible?” He then asked me, “Did you apply any medicine?” I said, “No, I applied only vibhuti.”

The man was shaking his head. He muttered, “I have seen many people come here. When they become sick, they go the hospital. I have never seen anything like this. Oh yes, I have read about such things happening, but actually seeing something like this? Never! I am amazed."

"But wait a minute. This decrease in swelling might just be temporary. It is quite possible that tomorrow it might go up again and even become worse.” However, despite his doubts, he allowed me to stay in the shed and did not send me off to the hospital.

Witness to a Miracle

I dragged myself to Darshan. I saw Swami from a distance; that is all. The next day, the swelling came down even further. By the fifth day or so, the leg was normal. The Volunteer in Charge was a constant witness and was amazed by the dramatic turn of events. He then began to ply me with a lot of questions and I told him of my numerous experiences. I said to him, “If I am alive today, it is entirely because of Swami. He never lets down those who have full faith in Him. It is very easy to earn Swami’s Grace. All that is required is total purity of thought, word and deed.” The man heard all this and asked, “Do you mean to say it is really all that simple?” I smiled and replied, “Well, why don’t you give it a try?”

Home at Last by Swami’s Grace

That evening, I went back to Madras. Meanwhile, my sons had found out what had happened and had a big fight with the auto rickshaw driver. They feared that in my move to save my leg I might have lost my life itself. There was a lot of chaos there when I landed, quite understandably. They gazed at me in shocked surprise and when they recovered, they asked, “What happened? Did Sai Baba talk to you?” I replied, “No, Swami was busy, and I was busy too in my own way, being absorbed in Him. Our job is to have total and unconditional faith in Him and His job is to shower Grace on us.”

The last several months, we have been carrying English translations of the transcripts of video recordings made last year during Mr. Krishnan’s visit to our studio. Mr. Krishnan spoke in his native language Tamil. The narration was then translated into English, entered into a computer and processed for publication in H2H. We hope you enjoyed this series.

While this installment brings to a close the present series by Mr. Krishnan, we assure our readers that we have many such recordings in our archives and when we have the resources to prepare them for publication, we shall, without fail, help you to share the thrilling experiences of devotees who have generously shared their memories with us. Thank you for joining us in this series. Jai Sai Ram.

Heart2Heart Team

 
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Vol 4 Issue 10 - OCTOBER 2006
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