The Lord while in His boyhood as Sathya was quite well known even beyond the village boundaries for His miraculous creation of Holy Ash, that was considered as the panacea for everything. ...And, He would even transform a person with mere looks and words of advice. Read on how, He, as young Sathya implanted the greater lesson of non-violence in a British sub-divisional officer who was out hunting wild animals. An extract from “Sathyam Sivam Sundaram” as written by Prof. N. Kasturi.

His return from Uravakonda and the announcement at Puttaparthi that He was the Sai Baba of Shirdi, came when He was only fourteen years of age. But the villages around and even far-off Anantapur (40 miles away), knew of His being Sai Baba. One day a jeep-driver crossed the river bed and walked the streets of Puttaparthi, trying to locate Swami. His master, a young English sub-divisional officer, had gone on shikar (hunting) to the forest on the other bank of Chithravathi, and while returning to Anantapur, the vehicle stopped right opposite Puttaparthi village. The driver did his best while the officer also tried his hand, but the vehicle could not be moved. The driver suggested that there was a boy at Puttaparthi, who could create Holy Ash, yes, “create, by a circular movement of his palm, the very panacea which would cure the ills of all, even the Jeep!” Stranded half-way, the Englishman agreed and let the driver go to the village, while he himself sat in the jeep. The driver bumped into the Boy at last, but Baba said, “I am coming, myself to the jeep.” He walked across the sandy bed, and reaching the road, He peeped into the vehicle and saw the carcass of a tiger which the officer had shot just two hours ago. Baba said, “I stopped the jeep at this place, for it is a mother whose three 2-week old cubs are at this very time, loudly wailing and calling out to her, that you are carrying. Go back! Recover those cubs and gift them to some zoo where they will be well looked after. And do not again shoot wild beasts, for they have not injured you. Why do you go in search of them, surrounding them and laying traps to catch them. Shoot them instead with your superior weapons, such as your camera. That won’t maim or kill them.” The Englishman obeyed and never carried a gun any more when he went into the forest. Shooting wild beasts armed with a camera, he discovered, was a bigger adventure and more sathwik. Swami loved animals so deeply that He could not tolerate killing them or torturing them. The officer’s conscience was so touched by Swami’s counsel that he could not live with the skin of the tiger when it came back from the taxidermist. He presented the cubs to the zoo and brought the skin to Puttaparthi. The Prasanthi Mandir was under construction then. He met Baba and placed the skin at His Feet. Sakamma of Coorg pleaded with Him to sit on it in yogi fashion, with a rosary between His fingers. She had a photographer ready. And Baba obliged, though he had never sat in dhyana or held a rosary!

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