8. The Divine Rainbow
Joel Reardon, Hollywood film producer, writer and director, has narrated yet another novel episode, providing a panoramic glimpse of Divinity that is Baba. Joel's wife Diana, herself a Sai devotee, carried a good number of Baba's pictures with her on returning home from her second trip to Puttaparthi. She displayed these pictures in their house with full-love and devotion for Bhagavan Baba. This brought about a vociferous protest from her husband, who even went to the extent of referring to Baba as "THIS CHARACTER".
Joel, decided to come to India and expose what_ he called "THIS CHARACTER". He had planned and accordingly told his friends Gould and S. J., before leaving U.S.A., "I will ask him for a rainbow over India, something which only God can give. _ am not a great believer in God and I certainly do not believe in the Voodoo type of Indian Characters.
On reaching Puttaparthi and after settling in a room there, they went atop the hillock for a cigarette, smoking is an absolute taboo in the Prasanthi Nilayam. As soon as they reached the top, Joel witnessed a magnificent spectacle in utter bewilderment. He saw a bright rainbow starting from just behind Diana and ascending vertically with amazing rapidity. In split seconds the rainbow reached a great height. Joel could not believe what he saw and shouted, "Diana, look over your right shoulder." She turned and on
And on seeing the rainbow exclaimed ‘My God’.
At this stage Diana informed Pamela, a girl from Bangalore, who was also sitting there, "Joel was going to ask Baba, if He is God, give him a rainbow. And look, Baba gave Joel what he wanted even before he could express it."
Joel's eyes were filled with tears when he said, "Look the sun is shining, the sky is cloudless and very clear. How can that be ?" He was wondering
whether "THIS CHARACTER" (as he called Baba) had heard his words right across from U. S. A. Concurrently the rainbow disappeared from below upwards.
That evening as Joel sat for Baba's darshan. Baba came straight to him and putting His Hand on Joel's shoulder said in a gentle voice, "How are you ? Character!" Joel was stunned. "Character!" the very word he had often used to ridicule Baba.
Next morning the family had an interview in which Baba asked Joel, ~'Well, Character! how did you like the rainbow ?" Then addressing the group Baba told them that Joel wanted only a rainbow. This clearly signifies that the creation of a rainbow was after all insignificant manifestation of the Divine Powers.
Joel was impressed by the rainbow which only God could create. Despite that, he was planning in his mind to test Baba further by asking him to produce an out of the season fruit there in the interview room. Knowing these thoughts concomitantly Baba waved His Hand before Joel and produced a FIG.
In their group was another American couple who were planning to go back as the wife had not got cured of her ailment despite having stayed at Puttaparthi for a reasonably long time. Baba turned towards the husband and spoke, "Why go home ? Am I not your Mother, Father and a Doctor ?” Then Baba gave half of the fig to her and asked her to eat it. She did so and was cured of a long-standing ailment. The other half of the fig was given by Baba to Joel's little daughter Christiana who in turn got cured of her illness.
Later on ,Joel learnt that the fig was totally unseasonal and not even grown in that part of the country. Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba often says,
I shall give you what you want so that you may want what I have come to give you."
Mentioning about this episode in Sanathana Sarathi. Joel has concluded, "Thank you for the seed. It is up to me, to prove worthy. The seed requires the water of faith. I must cherish the seed (God) with love and nurture it with faith."