On 23rd May 1940, Sathya rose from bed as
usual, but after some time, He called the members of the household
around Him, gave them sugar candy and flowers taken from nowhere.
At this, the neighbours too rushed in. He gave them each a
ball of rice cooked in milk, flowers and sugar candy concretised
by a mere wave of the hand. Meanwhile, Venkama Raju came and
he was incensed by what he thought was a trick, hiding things
somewhere and producing them by sleight of hand. He wanted
the chapter to be closed before it lengthened into a tragedy.
So, arming himself with a stick, he accosted Sathya and asked,
"Are You a God, a ghost or a madcap? Tell me!" Prompt
came the answer, the Announcement, that had been held back
so long, “I am Sai Baba."
At this, Venkama Raju was stunned into silence;
the stick slid from his hands. He stood staring at Sathya
trying to grasp the implications of that announcement - “I
am Sai Baba." But, Sathya continued, “I
belong to Apasthamba Sutra; I am of the Bharadwaja Gothra;
I am Sai Baba; I have come to ward off all your troubles;
keep your houses clean and pure." The elder
brother, Seshama Raju went near him, and asked, "What
do you mean by 'Sai Baba'?" He did not reply, but only
said this much - "Your Venkavadhootha prayed that I be
born in your family. So, I came." (There was a tradition
in the family, of a great ancestral sage called Venkavadhootha,
who was looked upon as a Guru in hundreds of villages around.)
The father felt that Sai Baba was a Muslim spirit speaking
through the boy and so, he asked, "What are we to do
with You?” Prompt came the answer; "Worship Me!"
"When?" "Every Thursday! Keep your minds and
One Thursday, someone challenged Sathyanarayana and asked
Him, “If you are Sai Baba show us some proof, now!"
Baba replied, “Yes, I shall" and asked for some
jasmine flowers. With a quick gesture, He threw them on the
floor and said "Look." They saw that the flowers
had formed, while falling, the Telugu letters, ‘Sai
On an invitation from some townsmen
in Hospet (Municipal commissioner of Bellary invited Swami.
Ref. 20 Oct. 2002 discourse), Seshama Raju decided
to take Sathya on a picnic to see if it might improve the
mental health of the boy. Hospet is a few miles away from
the ruins of Hampi, the capital city of the Emperors of ancient
Vijayanagara Kingdom in what is now the state of Karnataka.
There, they visited the temple of Lord Virupaksha, the patron
deity of the Vijayanagara. While the others in the party went
into the temple to offer worship at the sanctum sanctorum,
Sathya stood outside admiring the height and majesty of the
Gopuram (tall pyramid-shaped roof of a temple). When the priest
waved the flame of camphor before the Lingam (ellipsoid structure
worshipped as Lord Shiva), they saw to their utter amazement,
Sathya there inside the shrine! He was standing in place of
the Lingam, smiling and accepting their salutations. Thinking
that Sathya may have slipped into the shrine evading everybody's
notice, Seshama Raju went outside to verify whether He was
still there. Yes, indeed Sathya was there, leaning on a wall
and staring at the horizon! He rushed inside the sanctum sanctorum
and, yet again, he found Sathya standing there and blessing
This incident confirmed their faith in Sathya as a Divine
Manifestation. They offered special Puja (worship) to Him
that day. Hospet was on its toes with expectation and excitement.
The story that He was seen as Virupaksha had spread to that
town long before they reached it. The next day He cured a
chronic tuberculosis patient by His touch and made him get
up and walk a mile; He materialised a variety of articles
for the devotees and the enthusiasm of the people knew no
bounds. Bhajan and Namasankirtan (singing the name of God)
continued far into the night.