Legacy – what it means? ‘Legacy’ is something an individual keeps for his next generations or something which the next generations inherit from an individual. A person keeps money, jewellery, landed property, royalty, patent rights, etc. It is a similar concept as inheritance and heritage. It is something we inherit from our parents and pass on to our children. For his legal heirs, thus, a common man keeps legacy in the form of material objects. Usually heritage refers to material and economical inheritance, while legacy refers to immaterial and cultural inheritance. Some families pass objects and ideas down from generation to generation. These objects and ideas can also be called legacies. It may have to do with a person or many people.
Legacy at Various Levels:
Historical Level: In historical terms, a legacy is something that is handed down from one period of time to another period of time. A historical legacy can be a positive thing or a negative thing. For example, the invention of the wheel (for carts, as a pottery wheel, as a grinding wheel to help turn grain into flour, and as an early water wheel) in Mesopotamia can be seen as something positive. The development of slavery is a negative legacy.
Country Level: Sometimes countries or civilizations can leave a legacy. Legacies are, more or less, what we remember about a person or a country. What an individual or a country does today might, in the future, be regarded as being important enough to be thought of as a legacy from the 21st Century. In Athens, in Ancient Greece, people voted on their leaders. They created an early form of democracy. Greece & Ancient Rome voted for their leaders for many generations.
Body Level: It is temporal. It diminishes and finally gets extinct with the lapse of time.
Mind Level: A slightly evolved person like a poet, author, and artist keeps legacy of poetical ideas, philosophy, artistic contribution which a section of people enjoys for a considerable time. This legacy gives emotional and mental satisfaction which is supposed to be of a higher level than that at the material level.
Intellect Level: A talented scientist engaging himself in scientific research works and brings out new ideas and concepts which lead to production of new inventions. They make life more comfortable. Some of them narrow down the geographical boundaries and make the world a small family! Such legacy is claimed by the entire world. It lasts for a considerable length of period.
Individuals can leave a historical legacy. For example, more than 2000 years ago the Greek Mathematician, Euclid of Alexandria, collected and wrote down ideas about geometry and measurement in a text called Elements. Students still use these ideas when they learn about mathematics.
Legacy at the AVATAR Level: The legacy of Sri Sathya Sai Baba may consist of several parts.
1) Social care (Inspiration for others)
2) Love (The Ultimate Goal)
3) Educare (The True Education)
4) Sri Sathya Sai Organisation (Divine Vehicle for the Spiritual journey)
Social Care (Inspiration for others: He has set up the Institutions such as Schools, University, Hospitals, Ashrams, etc that are running for decades which offer free high quality education and most modern medical treatment to all, irrespective of religion, caste, creed or income. Thus, the working Models for others to get inspiration and motivation to set up similar examples of love and service to humanity. Thousands have benefited and they are indeed the living proofs of Baba’s compassion and love. These are the material parts of His Legacy, which are there for the whole world to see and experience.
Love (The Ultimate Goal): Sri Sathya Sai Baba descended for this very purpose, to awaken the inherent Divinity in mankind through Love. HE was just Love that transcended all barriers and limits and encompassed the entire creation. He has lit the lamp of love in millions of hearts, the brilliance of which inspires them to transform their lives and radiate that love in their daily lives. This love makes those individuals caring and sharing persons, who collectively engage in the society and by their actions, motivate others to also be caring and sharing, leading to a general improvement of society. HIS inspiration of Love to millions of individuals is translated verily into ‘Love in Action’ all over the world. This Love transforms lives every second. Life acquires a new meaning; one may call it a new path - Prema Yoga which embodies all the other yogas of Karma, Bhakti and Jnana within itself. He intensified, “God is Love and Live in Love” and that is the way for our continuous communion with Him.
LOVE is therefore HIS greatest legacy, which may not be touched but is real and universal and experienced by all. It belongs to all mankind, not just to a few. It cannot be appropriated by anybody but can only be shared and experienced, for the redemption of one and all.
Educare (The True Education): The next part of His Legacy is Education. While many others talked about it, HE postulated and introduced in His educational institutions human values based educational curriculum. The system of Integral Education implemented in the Sai University is unique and unlike any other. Education in Human Values has many concepts introduced by Sri Sathya Sai Baba, including 3-HV, and Educare. The education given in His institutions is for life and not merely for earning a living. Right from the stage of childhood, such value-based education is available in the Bal Vikas classes which are conducted throughout the length and breadth of India and in many other countries through the full-time Sai schools and Sai University. This legacy of values-based Sai Education is His priceless gift to humanity for posterity.
Sri Sathya Sai Organisation (Divine Vehicle for the Spiritual journey): The next part of His legacy is the Sri Sathya Sai Organisation, which is active in all over the world. It is an instrument created by HIM to enable all to perform their respective sadhana and achieve their spiritual goals through it. The Organisation has three wings - the devotional, educational and service. One can choose any to perform their seva and sadhana. Today in India alone, there are many hundreds thousands members who voluntarily serve with love and devotion. They include government officers and bureaucrats, doctors, engineers, judges and lawyers, professors and teachers, legislators, farmers, and students. They work in over many thousands of villages, slums, hospitals, old age homes, jails, orphanages and in disaster areas, inspired by HIS Message 's message that “Service To Man Is Service To God”. Many of them have never even had a chance to talk to swami, yet they have been supercharged by his divinity and have dedicated their lives to selfless service.
The Sai Organisation, which is active all over the world. HE does not only belong to his country of physical birth or to Indians but to the entire world and beyond. People from all over the world go to Puttaparthi in millions for His Love and Inspiration and they will continue to do so for He has become a part of their lives forever. The activities of the Sai devotee will continue to increase in the future. The Youth are giving a new dynamism and energy to the Organisation, using new tools and technology to improve the efficiency of their Seva. This Legacy of Sri Sathya Sai Baba is created for human good and welfare is always His, never to be taken away by anyone but only to be shared and experienced by personal involvement.
The legacy of the present Avatar, Sri Sathya Sai, is not restricted to His Educational Institutions (Educare), General and Super Speciality Hospitals (Medicare), Water Projects, Village Integration and Rural Development Projects (Sociocare), Restoration of Vedic Dharma through Yagnyas and Spiritual literature (Vedicare) and such other physical and visible attainments. In fact, it is limitless and unbounded, gross and subtle, external and internal, extensive and intensive, temporal and eternal, material and spiritual, visible and invisible, subjective and objective, personal and collective, private and public, here and elsewhere. It is available to anyone, whether he is a devotee, believer, non-believer, critic, sceptic, saint or sinner.
The legacy of Sri Sathya Sai is a vast and deep ocean available to anyone in any measure depending upon the cleanliness, purity and size of the ‘pot’ he brings.
As Sri Sathya Sai is a Poorna Avatar, His legacy must also be Poorna (full). But Poorna cannot be measured. It is only Apoorna (incomplete) which can be measured. Therefore, it is impossible to spell out various facets of His legacy in totality. However, an attempt can be made to explore into different realms of His legacy.
Love is HIS greatest legacy, which may not be touched but is real and universal and experienced by all. It belongs to all mankind, not just to a few. It cannot be appropriated by anybody but can only be shared and experienced, for the redemption of one and all. His legacy is His eternal message to Humanity. Blessed are those who knew Him. Even more blessed are those who share His legacy of “Love All, Serve All” and “Help Ever Hurt Never”.
The word LEGACY throws some light on different forms of legacy which HE has bestowed to mankind:
L for Love
E for Education & Educare
G for Grace
A for Attunement, Atonement & Adoration
C for Constant Integrated Awareness
Y for You
Sri Sathya Sai said, “My Life is My Message”. Therefore, “His Life is His Legacy”
(Ref: various Sai literature and articles on Sai)