God, we me love! I do not only pray
That perfect love may be bestowed on me;
But let me feel the lovability of every soul I meet along the way.
My score of teaching experience is 42 years not out. After my academic studies, teaching career was also in my contemplation but I did not succeed in getting a position. Therefore, I took up a non-teaching career. It was a short stint. Destiny pushed me to a teaching career. This happened twice and with hind-sight I feel it was the Sankalpa of Bhagavan to groom me as a teacher so that I would be of use to him later. It was the Divine design that pushed me into teaching. It was the year 1986. By then I had completed 14 years of service in Guru Nanak College Chennai with another 6 years of service left for retirement. As the senior most professor I was holding the post of vice-principal and was tipped for the post of principal from the next academic year. I was comfortable as I was there from the time commerce course was started. There was not an inkling of thought of quitting that institution. I presumed that my last service would be in that institution. Bhagavan chose that time to move me from Chennai to Prasanthi Nilayam. In that year Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning advertised for the post of Commerce professor. As a regular reader of Hindu I saw the advertisement. As the family was already devoted to Bhagavan I informed the people in the house about the advertisement. My youngest daughter Padmashree was very much excited and wanted me to apply. I did not respond at all as I had no intention to quit from Guru Nanak College. Bhagavan acted in his own unique way. My daughter went on asking everyday repeatedly for about seven days. Unable to bear her pressure I was in two minds. However, I applied for the post.
A couple of months later I received the call for interview to my great surprise. As a devotee I thought it is a chance to have Bhagavan's Darshan and therefore appeared for the interview. I felt that I did not do too well in the interview as the questions were mostly in the finance area and my specialization was in Accountancy. To my utter surprise, in the evening the Registrar asked me to sit in the verandah of the Ashram. Bhagavan called me and my wife for the most coveted interview. The first Interview was a delectable experience that I cherish for my life time. The interview so graciously granted by Bhagavan clinched the issue and I promised Bhagavan to join the Institute. As the management at Guru Nanak College had plans to make me Principal they were reluctant to relieve me. However, after giving sufficient notice I joined the Institute on 22nd January, 1987 even though the management did not relieve me.
After having narrated the story of my joining the Institute at the beginning of 1987, I must now go back to the year 1969. As a preliminary to the joining of a job. There was a medical examination and the examination revealed that I had high blood pressure. I was treated-by doctors but without much success. In. another one year or so I developed angina, the dreaded disease. In the year 1977 I had the heart attack when I just completed 43 years. My life was crippled. I could hardly walk for a distance of 300 yards. A visit to doctor every moth became a must. I was virtually sitting on a volcano. Again in 1984 I developed unstable angina and I spent about a month in Vijaya Hospital oscillating between life and death. Although I was discharged from the hospital the quality of life was very poor. I could not tolerate any strain either mental or physical. I could not lie down immediately after food. That year Bhagavan visited Chennai and with the help of a senior devotee Shri Rayanangar I sat among the sick. Swami came to me lovingly and gave me Vibhuti. It was the first time I received Vibhuti from his holy hands and I was quite excited and only with His grace I could withstand that excitement. From then on there was considerable improvement in my health. I could immediately lie down after food and could also cope up with physical and mental strain. My personal physician was suggesting all the time that I should undergo by-pass surgery for complete relief from angina. However I was too scared to undergo the trauma of surgery. I did not venture to. have the surgery as suggested by him. In retrospect it was a great mystery as to how I pulled on for so many long years with such severe angina. It was completely due to the grace of Bhagavan.
When I decided to move to Prasanthi Nilayam there was no cardiology department as the Super Specialty Hospital was set up only in the year 1991, My eldest son cautioned me about medical care in view of my fragile health. I was very emphatic in my reply. I told him that at Parthi we have the doctor of doctors and the master surgeon. The absence of cardiology department did not disturb me in the least. By the grace of Bhagavan I was cheerful and was doing my duty with all the enthusiasm I could muster. Not that I was free from my angina. On the other hand, I used to get anginal attacks on every occasion of strain, anxiety and tension. Sometimes I had the problem during Darshan times particularly when I hurried myself to be in time for Darshan. In 1990 Bhagavan announced that He would start a Super Specialty Hospital for the benefit of rural poor and weaker sections who could not go to urban areas and also afford costly medical treatment. Accordingly, the hospital was started in the year 1991 in a record time and the first cardiac operation was performed on 22nd November, on the eve of Bhagavan's 67th birthday. After that I had a dilemma. Should I represent my problem to Bhagavan or should I go to the hospital straight and get examined. Nearly two and half moths passed this way without me taking any decision. Again Bhagavan came to my rescue in His own unique way.
On the night of 22nd January 1992 I had severe angina and the pain was unbearable. I took two half-tablets of Sorbitrate the life-saving drug and there was no relief. Under such circumstances the cardiac patient is usually advised to rush to the doctor. With the help of my colleague Shri Mohana Krishnan my wife took me to the general hospital. The pain subsided miraculously when the doctors on duty gave me another half-tablet. I was in the hospital for that night and as I was leaving the hospital next morning Dr. Bhagat came to see the patients. The doctors on duty told Dr. Bhagat about my case. Dr. Bhagat immediately said" professor why don't you come on 27th, Monday and get thoroughly examined by staying in the hospital." If I did not meet him that morning, there was no question of my going to the hospital again on Monday. It was divine arrangement. On Monday I took my classes as usual and in the evening got admitted in General Hospital. After completing the tests there I was sent to Super Specialty Hospital on the morning of Tuesday for further tests. Angiogram was taken and it revealed that the blockage to the heart was 98% and it was functioning on the slender supply of 2%. That coupled with the fact that Dr. Venugopal's team was going back to Delhi in the next few days precipitated the need for the by-pass surgery on me.
The doctors and other well-wishers came in batches and insisted on immediate operation. Bhagavan at that time was on a visit to Mumbai. I told everyone concerned that come what may I will not have the operation unless Bhagavan clears the proposal. Surgeons were annoyed at my obstinacy but I did not give in. At that time the late Professor Sampath was our vice-chancellor a noble soul who was liked by everyone. He talked to me and then contacted Bhagavan on the issue. Bhagavan was very concerned and instructed the doctors to do the operation with a firm assurance that he would take care of me. The doctors arranged for the operation on Wednesday. I was silently offering my prayers to Bhagavan that it should be on Thursday (His day). On Wednesday I was taken to the theatre but was brought to the ward without operation. The apparent reason was that there was not enough oxygen. I really do not know the real reason even today. However, I was happy that my operation was to take place on Thursday.
Bhagavan's arrangement is always perfect and wonderful. By Wednesday all my children and my only sister reached Parthi with their spouses besides my in-laws and other kith and kin in spite of a day's notice and in the case of few there was no intimation. When I was wheeled into the theatre I was absolutely calm without any trepidation what so ever. This was in strong contrast to the timidity shown earlier when others suggested the operation. More surprising was that the whole family was cool and calm without any one getting upset even though I was undergoing major surgery. I am not exaggerating when I say that on that morning it was a festive atmosphere. All this was the Mahima of the Lord. The operation lasted five and half hours as the doctors had to stitch five by-passes to the vessels. Two hours after the operation I regained my senses which were switched off for about eight hours due to Anesthesia. The next day morning I had my breakfast and on the evening I was made to walk to the delight of all my family members. Swami came to the hospital after his return from Mumbai and poured out his love. I recovered fast and I was back to my teaching in the month of June when the Institute was reopened. That year in the month of July during His Guru Purnima message Bhagavan made a special mention of my surgery and the speedy and perfect recovery.
Prior to the surgery I could hardly walk for half a kilometer and at Parthi I never went beyond the post-office. The surgery due to Bhagavan's grace enabled me to walk for seven to eight kilometers without any stop in between. My family and I are forever indebted to the Lord for His love. The dramatic events he arranged over a very short period transformed me from a sick person to a very healthy person. I realised the importance of good health in life and what it means to the soul. Our debt to Bhagavan can never be redeemed. His love and compassion in saving me during every crisis and eventually giving a very healthy life is indeed my unique good fortune. With ischemic heart I could pull on such long years. He is the most compassionate Lord. I am just one among the several millions of beneficiaries of the Lord since His advent into this world. His love and compassion to everyone irrespective of colour, creed, religion and nationality must be seen to be believed. I firmly believe that in response to the sincere prayers of my forefathers that Swami has taken me into his fold and blessed me with His Darshan, Sparshan and Sambhashan. The greatest thing about Bhagavan is that he loves us in spite of our faults. It is pure and unsullied love. That is why he is God and we are human. Can we claim to be human? If so why should Bhagavan constantly remind us to eschew animal qualities and be human?
The students of Bhagavan are more fortunate than others. His grace and compassion flows on them like the descent of Ganges from the Himalayas on to the plains of Bharat. Sri Sathya Sai system of education is intended to mould the students in all respects so that when they step into the society they would act like catalysts agents to free the society from corruption, greed, hatred and Instead inculcate noble values so that life is worth living for everyone. Much is given to them by Bhagavan and much is expected of them. The future of society rests on the students of Sri Sathya Sai. I am indeed fortunate and blessed for having been given a small role in this process. As for as the teachers of the Institute are concerned no other Sadhana is required apart from equipping the students to enable them to play the designed role effectively.
- Late Prof. M. Radhaswamy
Associate Dean, Faculty of Business Management & Commerce (1993-2003)
Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning