Depression Healed by “A Small Bird”

It is frequently at a time of personal crisis that circumstances bring the unsuspecting person close to Sai Baba. Such was the case of a mother whose daughter was about to be married. The daughter was happy, healthy, and beautiful and the wedding seemed to promise continued happiness for all involved. But soon the mother learned to her great horror that her daughter had ended her young life in a drug related suicide. The shock was too much for her. She could not resolve the sudden dramatic turn that life had taken. She sank into a deep depression.

In the depths of her despair she was told of the presence on the earth of a great spiritual healer that some people called an Avatar – Sathya Sai Baba. She learned that he helped people who came to him from all over the world. Although there were no guarantees that he would indeed see her among the thousands of visitors, she decided to take the chance and go to India to see him. When she arrived at the main ashram in Puttaparthi, India she discovered he was not there but that he was a distance away at Kodaikanal. So she proceeded on to the place hoping to get to see him there.

When she arrived, she learned that Sai Baba came out twice a day to circulate amongst the devotees giving darshan. She waited for her chance and as soon as he was near enough to speak to she asked for his help. He told her: “I will see you tonight” and then went on to visit with other devotees. She was happy that he had agreed to see her but was confused as to how it would take place. She was staying in a hotel and taking a taxi to and from darshan and it was raining heavily. She had no idea when to come back or where to go to see him since there was no darshan at night and all the entrances were closed. She returned to her hotel room thinking about the things she had heard about various ways devotees had made contact with Sai Baba such as visions, dreams, timely appearances of unknown persons, etc.

She returned to her hotel and as she was walking in, she noticed that the doorman was holding in his hand a small bird thoroughly soaked from rain water. He asked her if she would be willing to take care of the little bird and she readily agreed and took it up to her room. There she placed it on a dry towel and checked it over for injuries. Finding no obvious injury to the bird, she held it in her hands in order to raise its body temperature. After a time it started to revive. She opened her hands and the bird fluttered to the floor and hopped under the bed. She felt that since it was warm and dark under the bed the bird would be well off there so the woman also decided to retire for the night. The next morning she looked for the bird but not finding it anywhere, she looked under the bed. It was still dark under the bed, and she didn’t see it so she tried talking to it. After several attempts the bird still did not emerge or respond in any way. So she changed the tone of her voice and said with firmness: “Now you must make an effort to come out of that dark place your are in, so that I can set you free.

As soon as she spoke these words to the little bird, the very same phrase echoed back to her in Baba’s voice just as if he were present and addressing her. Suddenly she realized the truth of his words: “I will see you tonight.” He had even managed to convey his message to her putting his words into her own mouth.

Then the small bird hopped from under the bed out into the light. She picked it up and released it back into the daylight letting it fly free to the destination of its choosing. The woman too emerged from the darkness of her depression and put herself into the hands of Baba, soaring off into new spiritual heights.

From a story that appeared in its original form in Life is a Challenge, Meet it!, by Joy Thomas. Published by Sri Sathya Sai Books and Publications Trust.

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