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Love and Light

Region 2 - Talk by Dr Kiran Patel at London West Sai Centre

At London West Sai Centre we were privileged to have a talk by Dr Kiran Patel, our National Chairperson, on 15th June this year. He told us many wonderful stories about our Dear Swami and the learnings that he had received from these interactions. However, there is one particular story that sticks in my mind.

This is the story of Swamiís manifestation of the Crucifix which took place in l973 for Dr John Hislop, an ardent devotee of Sai Baba. On Mahashivaratri Day Swami chose a small group of devotees and students to accompany him to the Bandipur Game Sanctuary in Bandipur Forest in Mysore State. Swami had already chosen a place on a dry riverbed where He would manifest the Lingam. As the group approached this location, Swami broke off two small twigs and placed them together and asked Hislop what it was. Hislop replied that it was a Cross. Swami closed his fingers over the twigs and breathed into his fist slowly three times. When he opened his hand a tiny figure was revealed of Christ crucified on the Cross.

Swami said that the image is of Christ after he died. It is a dead face. He also said that the stomach is pulled in and Christís ribs are showing as He had not eaten for eight days. Swami said that the wood is from the actual cross on which Christ was crucified and that it had taken a little time to find the wood after 2000 years!

I have always loved this story, probably because of my Christian background, but also because it tells us so much about Jesus and shows the enormous compassion that Swami had for His devotee in manifesting this little Crucifix. It also connects the Christian Faith to the Hindu religion because the Crucifix, which is a symbol of Christianity, was manifested on a Hindu festival. However, when Dr Kiran Patel told this story, he gave it a whole new dimension as I now know somebody who was there in the Bandipur Game Sanctuary on that day. Brother Kiran was actually present on that dry, sandy riverbed and he witnessed the manifestation of the Crucifix and also of the gold lingam on that auspicious day of Mahashivaratri.

Dr Kiran Patel was truly blessed to be present on that auspicious day, and we are truly blessed to have Brother Kiran with us in this country as Chairperson of the Sai Organisation.

In Dr John Hislopís account of this manifestation, he then goes on to recount what happened when he returned to Mexico with the Crucifix. Because the Crucifix is so small, he wanted to have some photographs taken of it so that they could be enlarged to show more details (this was in 1973 remember). When Hislop saw the photographs he said that he was sure that it is the greatest sculpture of Christ ever made and that, in his estimation, it is the most extraordinary object Sri Sathya Sai has ever created for the joy of His devotee.

As Hislop and his wife, and his friend Walter and his wife studied the photographs, without warning, there was a loud crash of thunder and lightening flashed from a dark cloud where previously there had only been blue sky. This was accompanied by a violent wind that sent the curtains flying in all directions. Mrs Hislop observed that it was 5 p.m., the time when Jesus died on the Cross and that what was happening was described in the Bible. She later brought a Bible which says that at the moment Jesus gave up His life a violent storm arose with thunder and lightening and winds rent the curtains of the temple.

The Hislops and their friends concluded that this recapitulation of an event which had taken place nearly 2000 years ago implied that there was a great power connected to that small Cross and Christ figure materialised by Swami. Baba later confirmed that the event had occurred as described and that the significance attributed to it was correct. Swami also said that when he went to look for the wood, every particle of the cross had disintegrated and had returned to the elements but Swami had reached out to the elements and reconstituted sufficient material for a small Cross. Very seldom does Swami interfere with Nature but, occasionally, for a Devotee, it will be done. I understand that this tiny Crucifix is now in the possession of Dr Goldstein.

Jai Sai Ram
Pamela Nash
Chairperson, London West Sai Centre