Get Up! Get Up!

Do I have faith in Baba as God? Do I have faith in myself as God? Faith is the key issue. All Avatars, Masters, and healers have recognized the power of faith as the healer. Even allopathic physicians acknowledge the healing effect of the placebo and recognize the importance of the faith of the patient in the physician. Jesus told those that He healed: “Thy faith has made thee whole.” Baba’s Mission is not to do our work for us but to show us how to become master of the body and the senses, writes Joy Thomas narrating some episodes from her life that helped her to learn greater lessons.

On the morning of December 1, 1988, I sat watching in ecstasy, as Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba made the rounds of the darshan area, accepting a letter or two here, manifesting Vibhuti for someone there, giving joy to all who could witness His graceful walk and loving glance.

It was my seventh trip to Prasanthi Nilayam, the first having been in 1981, but each visit is as thrilling as the first.

Having just arrived the previous afternoon, I was caught completely off guard when I looked up to see my husband signalling me from the verandah to come up. Before I could quite comprehend what was happening, the volunteers had taken hold of my wheelchair and pushed me up to the verandah. Baba greeted me, spoke to the friend with whom I had travelled, then came toward me with His arms stretched out as if He were going to take hold of my hands, but then, without touching me, He said, “Get Up, Get Up!” I got up. It would never occur to me not to do anything Baba asked. The reaction of the group assembled for darshan surprised me. Everyone clapped.

His remarks during the course of the interview seemed to me to center around the theme of Self-confidence. He spoke of the importance of having faith in God, faith in one’s Self, and faith in the Self as God. I am sure that many of the devotees from Holland, Germany, India and the United States, who were in that same interview, heard different things .But for me, these were the central points. As the interview came to a close, Baba walked out and I followed. The wheel chair was waiting for me there on the verandah, and I realized that I had a choice. I could return to the chair, wait to be pushed back to Round Building One (a distance of about two city blocks, part of which is uphill and uneven with the additional hazard of loose stones), or I could accept the healing which had been offered. It was up to me. I chose to go forward, leaving the chair behind. My friend brought the empty chair as she left the verandah.

Over the past few days, since Baba told me to “Getup!” I have been questioned by physicians who were witness to the event, and photographed standing, walking, and sitting. The major question asked is: Was this a genuine miracle? I have attempted to answer each question as factually as possible. In terms of any physical change, since there has not yet (and probably will never be) any comparison of before and after X-rays, I can report only this: Prior to December 1, whenever I walked only a few steps, inflammation of the joints was so great that there was considerable heat and greatly increased pain for several days following. As of now, after walking more than I have walked for the past several years, there is no inflammation of the joints at all—no heat. Muscles which are being used after years of relative idleness are reacting with soreness but this is not at all out of the ordinary. Whether the condition will return or be permanently vanquished, I feel, depends strictly on me. Swami has done His job. Now it is up to me to do mine.

I am, of course, extremely grateful for every aspect of this experience but I know that Baba wants us to understand His adherence to and fulfilment of the law. He has continually stressed that He is God, and that each of us is God—that whatever He does is possible for us to do also. If rearranging molecules or exchanging one substance for another is considered miraculous, then He does perform miracles. Many hundreds of people can testify to witnessing such events. That He is able to regenerate a badly deteriorated knee joint is not more difficult than causing a ring to slip on the finger easily when seconds before no amount of force could push it on.

However, the miracle of all miracles is the unwavering, unchanging love which he pours out freely to everyone who will open his heart to receive it. What has happened in my experience is only a tiny speck of what has happened in the lives of hundreds of thousands of people. Each one has been healed of his diseases, pardoned of his errors, and freed from his addictions as rapidly as he would permit. The miracle of miracles is a life regenerated. Baba’s mission is to regenerate lives—and through such, to guide us into the realization of Advaita and the experience of peace on earth.

II Samasta Lokah Sukhino Bhavantu II