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Temples of Learning

“Education is for Life not for a living.”

- Bhagawan Baba

Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning | Sri Sathya Sai Higher Secondary School
Sri Sathya Sai Mirpuri College of Music | Sri Sathya Sai Gurukulam English Medium School

The system of education in Bhagawan’s educational institutions mirrors the ancient Gurukula system that was followed in India in the days of yore. The Gurus or preceptors in those days recognized that merely absorbing secular knowledge for the sake of earning a living was not sufficient to ensure that the students achieved true happiness in their lives. They placed equal emphasis on the use of that knowledge towards serving society, and equipped their students with the wisdom to lead their lives in a righteous and responsible manner. Character building was considered the ideal of education. The ultimate goal of the educational system was in keeping with the scriptural declaration “Sa Vidya Ya Vimukthaye” (True education is that which liberates).

The education system in our country today is in stark contrast to that ideal. Crass commercialization of this field is fast leading to a situation where the society is materially affluent but morally bankrupt. The values of truth, reverence, gratitude and righteousness have been forced to take a backseat and have been replaced by a hedonistic craving for power and wealth. But, if the turmoil in society in general and the unrest amongst students in particular is in any indicator, this system is no longer serving its purpose.

It is in this context that Bhagawan has pioneered the concept of “Educare”. The word educare in Latin means manifesting that which is latent within. The system of education in the schools and colleges set up by Bhagawan is a holistic one that aims at drawing out the knowledge, human values and wisdom that are present in a latent form in the student. In 1981, Bhagawan set up the Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning by fusing together the colleges that had been established earlier at Anantapur, Whitefield and Puttaparthi. The Sri Sathya Sai Higher Secondary School at Prasanthi Nilayam was started in 1983. These institutions provide education from the primary school level right up to the post-doctoral level. No fees whatsoever are charged from the students in these establishments.

Bhagawan set up the Sri Sathya Sai Mirpuri College of Music at Prasanthi Nilayam in the year 2001. Both Carnatic and Hindustani styles of vocal music are taught here apart from training in playing the veena, mridangam, sitar and tabla. The foundation course in these subjects is for two years and is open to boys of the age group 13-20. The diploma course is of three-year duration and is for boys of the age group 16-23.

Adjoining the music college is an innovatively designed building, its facade formed from different musical instruments. This is the museum that displays musical instruments from various parts of the world. This is also the setting for many enthralling concerts by the boys of the music college when Bhagawan comes visiting.

The Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust runs the Sri Sathya Sai Gurukulam English Medium School at Rajahmundry in Andhra Pradesh. It is a residential school affiliated to the ICSE (Indian Council for Secondary Education). The school conducts classes for boys up to 10th standard. In keeping with Bhagawan’s philosophy, no tuition fees are charged from the students. The schedule of activities too is modelled after that of Bhagawan’s institutions in Prasanthi Nilayam. The scenic campus spread over 27 acres houses an auditorium and a swimming pool in addition to the school and hostel buildings.

The Trust runs the Sri Sathya Sai International School for Human Values at New Delhi for the propagation of the human values of Truth, Right Conduct, Peace, Love and Non-violence and offers doctoral programmes in the areas of human values, spirituality and related subjects. The Trust also runs a primary school for children from under-privileged families. In addition to imparting education free of cost, they are also given books, uniforms and free boarding.

The Central Trust has also constructed the Sri Sathya Sai Junior College at Kothacheruvu near Prasanthi Nilayam that has since been handed over to the Government of Andhra Pradesh. In Puttaparthi, Sathya Sai Nagar, Prasanthigram and in Taraka Rama Nagar (Kammavaripalli), where no proper infrastructure existed to conduct classes at Primary level, school buildings have been constructed by the Trust.