ADVISORY TO DEVOTEES
Several claims have been made in the recent past by individuals, organisations and others either claiming to be Sai Babas or claiming to have received instructions from him,seeking from general public and devotees -contribution,support or attendance at their congregation.
While imitation is the best form of flattery and the devotees and others are free to act as per the dictates of their conscience, it may be worthwhile to remember what Bhagwan Sri Sathya Sai Baba himself has said about such activities.
“There are some who extol others for the absurd reason that Sai Baba speaks through them! How silly? It is all drama which cheats sick minds. Do not fall a prey to these. That is why I say, keep your devotion within yourself, under control, and not be led away by crooks and self-seekers. These lead you astray by giving you a wrong idea of the Lord's manifestation. They befoul the faith that their brothers and sisters repose in God."
Excerpts from Discourse at Prashantinilayam on October 15, 1964
"Talking of faith, I must issue a warning. Many people are collecting money in various places using My Name for various purposes like arranging receptions, building temples, doing Puja, etc. That is unauthorised and against My wish and command. Do not yield to such requests and encourage this practice, which I condemn.”
“There is another set of people who trade on your faith. They advertise that I am 'talking' through a medium or some other thing. Treat all such people and their agents or brokers as you treat cheats; if you do not treat them so, then you are also accomplices in the cheating process.”
“There are others who gather groups of followers and admirers and collect money .They even declare "Baba sent me to you to take from you some money" or "Baba has given me this" or "Baba blessed me specially thus and thus" and then ask for your help or your praise or your purse! I ask you to chastise all these types of men and turn them away, whoever"
Excerpts from Discourse on November 25, 1962 at Prasanthi Nilayam
" People say 'Baba appeared to me in a dream and commanded me to do this and that, to you, to collect so much from you etc., etc. Do not give heed to such cheats; punish them in the way they deserve. That is the advice I have to give you"
"Do not believe if any one comes to you and declares, "Sathya Sai Baba came to me in my dream and commissioned me to do publicity for him. Please help me as far as you can". I do not commission any one for such work, either in dream or while he is awake. Such men are cheats; treat them as such, without mercy”
Excerpts from Discourse on March 26, 1965 at Kakinada
Do we need any more clarity than these stirring words,particularly our becoming accomplices to cheating, if we encourage this?
Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust