Raisins, ash raise eyebrows
Sai Baba in Media:
April 19, 2006
By Yogas Nair
Golden raisins falling out of a Lord Hanuman statue, sweet honey oozing
from his chest and grey ash scattered on Sai Baba pictures.
These were some of the mysterious sights that greeted a Phoenix crystal
healer and businesswoman when she arrived at her clothing factory on the
morning of Hanuman Jayanthi (Hanuman's birthday) on Thursday.
Lorraine Govender, 25, of Brookdale, said she had first experienced Baba's
leelas (miracles) two years ago at her factory in Grey Street, Durban.
Said Govender: "When I first opened my factory in 2004 I had a God lamp
and a brass water container. The brass vessel often filled with coconut
water, and, at times, had bits of coconut in it."
She said she was not a Sai believer at the time and sought advice from
"I was told by a staunch Sai devotee to buy a picture of Sai Baba and
place it in my prayer place, at work. Soon thereafter, ashes began to
She said the picture of Sai Baba had also "shed tears" which "tasted
salty". "I was overwhelmed by everything that was happening. However, I
accepted it as a blessing and reaffirmed my faith in God."
She said during auspicious days such as Ganesha Pooja and Shivarathri,
kungoo (scared red ash), turmeric, sugar candy and coloured strings,
appeared on deities of Lord Ganesha and Shiva.
Govender said after she moved premises this year to the Teachers' Centre,
Albert Street, the miracles continued to happen.
Pregnant with her second child, Govender, who does crystal healing using
candles, coloured crystal and incense oil to "heal people", said she was
not a "fake" and did not believe in "using black magic".
"God will punish me if I con people. I allow people to worship at my
shrine at work and pray for them. It is seva - service to God."
She said she did not charge a fee and that the miracles and crystal
healing were not a "money-making scheme".
"I want to help people. It's not about making money. My clothing business
brings in sufficient income for my security guard husband Devendran, son
Sashin, and me, to survive on."
I visited Govender at her factory yesterday (Tuesday) and was greeted by
mounds of unscented ashes around Baba's photographs. Honey was "oozing"
out of a Hanuman statue and raisins appeared scattered around it. A deity
of Lord Shiva also appeared to materialise a blue crystal.
"The crystals started appearing very recently and I am hoping someone will
tell me what it is," Govender said.
She said she collected about 5kg of ashes a week and donated it to local
temples. I did express my sceptiscism to Govender about her claims and she
suggested she would clear the ash, lock the shrine and give me the key.
Said Govender: "You open the shrine in the morning and see what you find."
Machinist Fathima Adam, 36, of Westham, said she was a staunch Muslim and
did not believe in miracles.
"I am not a believer. However, on Thursday I saw the raisins and honey
falling out of the statue. It was an emotional moment which left me
Govender said her shrine was open for anyone to see. She can be contacted
at 084 454 6013.
President of the Sathya Sai Central Council of South Africa Dr Reggie
Reddy said these leelas happened "all the time" and confirmed the
omni-presence of Baba. He said the "miracles" happened for specific people
and should not be for public consumption.
"It is a guiding light and inspiration for Lorraine and her family. It
should not become a public spectacle."
According to Shri Sathya Sai Baba his leelas are evidence of his divinity.
Said Sai Baba: "It is neither magic nor siddhi power. I seek no return and
do not cheat people by transferring objects, but I create them. I do not
do so because of any need or desire of exhibition of my powers. For me
this is a kind of calling card to convince people of my love for them and
secure their devotion in return. Since love is formless, I do
materialisation as evidence of my love." ref:
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