Be Careful Of Careless Associations

When the Supreme One comes down in a human frame, walking amongst men, choosing the right, deserved ones for Him to nurture, He acts most mysteriously, at times, taking care of the so-called subtle details, only to help take home some of the most potent messages. Read on an incident from the life of Sri Prabhakar Bayisetty of Prasanthi Nilayam from his recently published book, LIFE CONTRACT WITH GOD. 

There was another time when I gave a ride in my car to someone who was going in the same direction as I. Back then, I had an Ambassador car that I would drive to the local towns to shop for electrical or plumbing supplies because nothing was available in Puttaparthi. At that time, there weren’t many people with cars in Puttaparthi, and transportation choices were limited. So if someone asked for a ride, I wanted to be a good samaritan by helping them out.

On one such trip to Anantapur, the local bank manager asked if he could go along, and I agreed right away. As we were nearing Brahmanapalli, we could see there were a lot of people milling around, and usually that was a sign of Swami’s car in the vicinity, so we pulled over to the side of the road. Swami had gone to Whitefield, so we thought He was returning that day.

When Swami’s car drove by, He saw me, and His face bloomed into a huge smile, and He raised His hand in Abhayahasta. I was thrilled by the unexpected blessings, and went onto Anantapur in a sky-high state of mind.

The next morning, I was called into the Trust office by Kutumba Rao garu and Chiranjivi Rao garu. Once I stepped inside, they closed the door and locked it. And then they turned to me and asked if I went anywhere the previous day, and how I travelled, and who I travelled with. I told them I went to Anantapur by car, and had the bank manager with me. They asked if the bank manager was a friend or family member, and I replied, “No”.

Then Kutumba Rao garu said, “Listen, Swami doesn’t like these sorts of casual acquaintances when you don’t know who you’re associating with. Since this is your first time, He didn’t want to upset you by telling you directly, so He sent me to relay this message. Please be very careful in the future how you make your acquaintances.” I had no idea something so simple as giving a car ride could be such a huge mistake.

I realised later that even the actions we perform so casually have consequences. The mistake was not about giving a ride, but about making decisions unconsciously. I recognised that we must be conscious and mindful of our every decision and action we take. Because according to Swami, after all that is said and done, everything else is impermanent, except truth and reputation.

Asthiram Jeevanam Loke,

Asthiram Youvnam Dhanam,

Asthiram Daaraa Puthraadi,

Sathyam Keerthi Dwayam Sthiram.

- Sri Sathya Sai

Life in the world is impermanent,

Youth and wealth are impermanent,

Wife and children are impermanent,

Only the two – Truth and Reputation are permanent.

- Sri Sathya Sai

II Samastha Lokah Sukhino Bhavantu II