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Interaction with Sri Peddi Reddy garu

Aum Sri Sai Ram

He spent 43 years of his life doing Service in Prashanthi Nilayam - shouldering the responsibility of running the South Indian canteen,  developing Planetarium infrastructure, taking care of our beloved  Swami's non-human devotee which transcends the human devotion - Sai Geetha. His life is synonymous to the path of Karma-Yogin  as declared by  Bhagawan himself.


This email is to share the beautiful and unique experience/opportunity we had to converse with Sri Peddi Reddy garu in our recent Sivarathri trip to Parthi.

It was around 5 in the evening and the mood of the group as usual was upbeat. The ambience was perfect with the lush green fields as the  backdrop; with birds giving the background music; under the cool shade of the tall trees; the twilight illumining the scene to give just the right effect, and not to forget our jumbo Sai Geetha popping in cartful of king sized water melons into her mouth!

We, more than 50 in number, finished our work and were ready for some  Satsang, Peddi Reddy garu was also there with us with his hands  slightly free from work- without a doubt the whole scene was perfectly orchestrated by Swami Himself. We immediately grabbed the opportunity to request him to share some of his experiences after entering the Sai realms. The initially reluctant Karma Yogin later could not stop his immense love and devotion for Swami pouring out in the form of the conversation.

Peddi Reddy garu first came to Parthi in 1956 along with handful of  youth from Godavari District. He instantly knew that the right place for him in this life is at the Lotus feet, so he immediately resolved  that he would be back after doing M.Sc in Physics. When he returned to Parthi in 1963 Bhagawan handed over the responsibility of running the canteen, which he accepted with utmost humility. As time lapsed he was also made in- charge for constructing the Planetarium. During this time, he used to wake up at 2:00 am and then work in the fields till Darshan time at 6 am only to save couple of hundreds of Rupees, which were used for other needy projects. Later his responsibility was extended as the caretaker of Sai Geetha. The Masters degree  holder in Physics now had to master Agrarian and Veternararian skills

The last time Swami gave him an interview was around 25 years ago, when asked as to what keeps him going even today his simple answer was that his incentive was not the physical proximity with Bhagawan, or the conversation with Him to fulfill his personal needs, but the sense of duty for the task which Swami has assigned him. The sense of Urgency in his tone and action to serve Swami in this avatar left us spellbound. Karma Yogin, as he is aptly referred to never stepped out of Parthi in the last 30 years.

Sai Geetha - The Devotee

Sai Geetha was found as baby elephant trapped in Bandhipur forests.  The forest officer being Swami's devotee, offered this lovely Child to swami. Could there have been a much safer and delightful place for this innocent being! 

Early days of Sai Geetha in Prashanthi Nilayam were beyond  comprehension. Swami used to catch her trunk and go around for the darshan. Everyday in the morning she used to go around the Nilayam 108 times and then get ready to garland the Master Of the Worlds! Its  been told that it can sense Swami's presence even from five miles. As she grew older, caretakers suggested swami to let it go to the forest  as it was mating phase of its life. Swami told them that it wouldn't get involved in any such process as it was already deeply devoted to the Lord, but Swami finally yielded to their request and let it go to the Bandhipur forests. Over three months passed, swami visited the  forest only to observe Sai Geetha isolating itself from the rest of  the elephants and apparently it also reduced its diet as it could not consume the food in the forest, and it never got into the mating.  Inspite of this indelible demonstration of its Love for Bhagwan, Swami wanted to give some more time for her in the forest. The moment she saw Swami she ran behind His car for a long distance. When Swami  returned after six months nothing much changed! Indeed it is an example set up for the rest of the world by the apparently less evolved being.

Why did you not include his name?

About four years back, Swami decided to felicitate all the long standing members who were serving in the Prashanthi Nilayam all these years. When finally the list was prepared Peddi Reddy garu's name was missing. When it was shown to Swami from among more than hundred names he precisely noticed the absence of Peddi Reddy garu's name.

Immediately Swami enquired, " Why is Peddi Reddy's name not included?  He is a Karma Yogin. Include his name too". Well, this in itself was the best recognition that Peddi Reddy garu could ever get! As a person his monthly expenditure is not even in hundreds of rupees...a great learning for all of us. 

It was under his guidance that for the first time our Hyderabad boys  got the opportunity to serve in the canteen. When the service was done, the following day Swami distributed clothes to all the Sevadal members. Hyderabad boys missed out this opportunity and Peddi Reddy garu felt sad for the boys. Next day in the Darshan he sat beside the boys and when Swami was moving away he called out for Swami and told that even Hyderabad boys had worked very hard. Listening to this swami distributed clothes to the Hyderabad Group too. Here is a man who never asked Bhagwan any personal benefits but was so enthusiastic to get the boys blessed by Him...a great Leader he indeed is!

It was already dark in the fields and all the boys were listening  very intently. The reality donned and it was time for our dearest Peddi Reddy garu to go back to canteen and ensure that everything is ready for the thousands of devotees waiting for Prasadam.

We thank Swami for giving us this wonderful opportunity to interact with such a great soul.

Jai Sai Ram

Posted on 12.04.2005 by mailsreepada77

Excerpts from a Sisters mail:

Swami was very playful for a couple of days this week! On Monday morning (April 4th, 2005), Swami came after bhajans began. The car drove straight in (not turning), straight past the ladies side, then it turned towards the verandah, bypassing the gentís side. Swami got down and went into the Mandir for bhajan. It seemed like a normal bhajan Darshan!

But after only one bhajan, Swami suddenly came out of the Mandir! He motioned for bhajans to continue. He got in the car and directed it to go straight towards the back of the verandah, towards the gentís side. Swami did a round, giving Darshan to the gentís side, and drove straight past the  ladies and out to the Poornachandra. We thought that was that, and several hundred people on both the gentís and ladies side, got up & left the hall.

But lo! Suddenly the car was again driving into the hall! It again drove straight past the ladies side, and turned and went out the Gopuram gate! Gents and ladies ran amok, running to the back of the hall to catch a glimpse of the disappearing car.

Instead of leaving the ashram, the car turned and went past the Canteen and I guess, around the Poornachandra.

But suddenly what happened? Swami had made a round and was again coming into the Darshan hall! There was amazed shaking of the heads and laughter all around!

This time, Swami turned after entering the hall and went down the ladies isle (wheelchair isle), turned and onto the verandah. When He had only one foot out of the car, arathi began! How strange! But He was not deterred! Though arathi was going on, Swami went into the bhajan hall and sat on the chair! After arathi all was silence, as Swami sat in the chair for 5 or 10 minutes! He blessed everyone in the hall with upraised hand, then came out and sat in the car again. The car came out the usual way, past the wheelchair isle and out of the hall. Swami  looked over when He passed, with a smirk-like smile, and boy did He looked pleased with Himself! Like a playful Krishna!

Most people coming out that day had wide smiles on their faces at the unique Darshans! (...)

Posted by Brother Jay Sai Ram on 08.4.2005

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