Sai Baba as Sadguru

There are many so-called Gurus,who go about from house to house with cymbals and Vina in their hands,and make a show of their spirituality.They blow Mantras into the ears of their disciples and extract money from them.They profess to teach piety and religion to their disciples,but are themselves impious and irreligious.Sai Baba never thought of making the least show of His worth (piety).He had no Body-consciousness but He had great love for His disciples.There are two kinds of Gurus (1) ‘Niyat’ (appointed or fixed) and (2) ‘Aniyat’ (unappointed or general).The latter by their advice develop the good qualities in us,purify our hearts and set us on the path of salvation;but contact with the former,dispels our sense of dualities (sense of difference,)and establishes us in Unity by making us realize “Thou art that”.There are various Gurus imparting to us various kinds of worldly knowledge but he,who fixes us in our Nature (self) and carries us beyond the ocean of worldly existence,is the Sadguru.Sai Baba was such a Sadguru.His greatness is indescribable.If anybody went to take His darshan,He without being asked,would give every detail of his past,present and future.He saw Divinity in all beings.Friends and foes were alike to Him.Disinterested and balanced,He obliged the evil-doers as well as the pious.He was the same in prosperity and adversity.No doubt ever touched Him.Though,He acted through the body He was not in the least,attached to His body or house.”Though,He looked embodied,He was really unembodied ,i.e., free from gross existence.

Blessed are the people of Shirdi,who worshiped¬† Sai as their God.While eating,drinking,working in their backyards and fields,and doing various household jobs,they always remembered Sai and sang His glory.They knew no other God except Sai.What to speak of the sweetness of the love of the women of Shirdi!They were quite ignorant but their pure love inspired them to compose poems or songs in their simple rustic language.Letters of learning they had none,still one can discern real poetry in their simple songs.It is not intelligence,but love that inspires real poetry.As such,real poetry is the manifestation of true love,and this can be seen and appreciated by intelligent listeners.Collection of these folk-songs is desirable and by Baba’s wish some fortunate devotee may undertake the task of compiling and publishing these folk-songs,either in the Sai Leela magazine or seperately in a book.

Signs of Sadguru

He,who teaches us Ved and Vedanta or the six Shastras (systems),he,who controls the breath or brands his body with Mudras (metallic marks of Vishnu’s weapons) or gives pleasing discourses regarding Brahma;he,who gives Mantras (sacred syllables) to the disciples and orders them to chant the same a certain number of times,but does not assure them any result in a definite time,he,who,by his lengthy gross knowledge,explains beautifully the Ultimate Principle;but has himself got no experience or self-realization,is not a Sadguru.But,he,who,by his discourse,creates in us a distaste for the enjoyments of this world and the next,and gives us a taste of self-realization,who is well-versed in both the theoretical and practical knowledge (self-realization) deserves to be called a Sadguru.How can he,who is himself devoid of self-realization,give it to the disciples? A Sadguru does not,ever in his dream,expect any service or profit from his disciples.On the contrary he wishes to serve them.He does not think that,he is great and the disciple is small.Not only,he loves him as his son but regards him as equal to himself or as Brahma.The main characteristic of a Sadguru is that,he is the abode of peace.He is never restless nor ruffled.He has no pride in his learning.The poor and the rich,the small and the great,are the same to him.

Amra-Leela (Mango Miracle)

Once a parcel of about 300 good mangoes was received at Shirdi.It was sent from Goa by one Mamlatdar named Rale to Sai Baba,in the name of Shama.When it was opened,all the mangoes were found to be in a good condition.They were given in Shama’s charge and only four were retained and placed in the Kolamba (pot) by Baba.He said,”These four fruits are for Damu Anna,let them lie there!”

This Damu Anna had three wives.According to his statement,mentioned above,he had not three,but two wives only.He had no issue.He consulted many astrologers and himself studied astrology to some extent and found that,as there was a ‘Papi’ (inauspicious) planet in his horoscope there was no prospect of any issue to him in this life.But,he had great faith in Baba.When he went to Shirdi,two hours after the receipt of the mango parcel,for worshipping Baba,He said,”Though other people are looking for the mangoes,they are Damya’s.He whose they are,should ‘eat and die’.”Damu Anna,on hearing these words,was first shocked,but on Mhalsapati (a Shirdi devotee) explaining to him that,death meant the death of the ego and to have it at Baba’s Feet was a blessing.Damu Anna said that,he could accept the fruits and eat them.But Baba said to him,”Do not eat yourself,but give them to your younger wife.This Amra-leela (mango miracle of 4 mangoes) will give her four sons and four daughters.”This was done,and in due course it was found Baba’s words turned out true and not those of the astrologers.

Baba’s speech established its efficacy and greatness,while He was living in the flesh,but it did the same even after His passing away.Baba said,”Believe Me,though I pass away,My bones in My tomb would be speaking,moving and communicating with those,who would surrender themselves whole-heartedly to Me.Do not be anxious that,I would be absent from you.You will hear My bones speaking and discussing your welfare.But remember Me always,believe in Me heart and soul and then,you will be most benefited.”

Cup of Butter-milk

Once Hemadpant had eaten to his full capacity in this company,when Baba offered him a cup of butter-milk.Its white appearance pleased him,but there was no space for it.He however,took only a sip,on seeing his faultering attitude,Baba said,”Drink it all,you won’t get any such opportunity,hereafter.”He drank it off then,and found that Baba’s words were prophetic,for He passed away after a brief period.

Now readers,we have certainly to thank Hemadpant.He drank the cup of butter-milk.but has supplied us with sufficient quantity of nectar in the form of Baba’s Leelas.Let us drink this nectar to our heart’s content and be satisfied and Happy.

Ganges Bath

On one Makar Sankranti day Megha wanted to smear the body of Baba with sandal-paste and bathe Him with Ganges water.Baba was first unwilling to undergo this but at his repeated requests He consented.Megha had to traverse a distance of eight Kos (going and returning) to bring the sacred water from the Godavari river.He brought the water,made all preparations for the bath at noon and asked Baba to get ready for the same.Then Baba again asked him to be spared from this bath saying that as a Fakir He had nothing to do with Ganges water but Megha did not listen to Him.He knew that Shiva is pleased with Abhishek (Sacred Bath) on that auspicious day.Baba then consented came down and sat on a wooden board and projecting His head said,”Oh Megha do at least this favor,head is the most important organ of the body,so pour the water over that only – it is equivalent to the whole bath”.”All right “,said Megha and lifting the water pot up began to pour it on the head but in doing this,he was so much overwhelmed with love that he cried out,”Har Har Gange” (Hail goddess Ganga) and emptied the pot on the whole body.He kept the pot aside and began to look at Baba,but to his surprise and amazement he found that only Baba’s head was drenched while the body quite dry.

Baba allowed His devotees to serve Him in their own way and did not like any other persons interfering in this.To quote an instance,the same Maushibai was,on another occasion kneading Baba’s abdomen.Seeing the force used by her,all other devotees felt nervous and anxious.They said, “Oh mother be more considerate and moderate,otherwise you will break Baba’s arteries and nerve.”At this Baba got up at once from His seat and dashed His Satka on the ground.He got enraged and His eyes became red like live embers.None dared to stand before Baba.Then He took hold of one end of the Satka with both hands and pressed it in the hollow of His abdomen.The other end He fixed to the post and began to press His abdomen against it.The Satka which was about two or three feet in length,seemed all ready to go into the abdomen and the people feared that,the abdomen would be ruptured in a short time.The post was fixed and immovable and Baba began to go closer and closer to it,and clasped the post firmly.Every moment the rupture was expected and they were all dismayed,did not know what to do and stood dumb with wonder and fear.The other devotees wanted only to give a hint to the Maushibai to be moderate in her service and not cause any trouble or pain to Baba.They were surprised to see that,their well-intentioned effort had resulted in this crisis,and they could do nothing but to wait and watch.Fortunately,Baba’s rage soon cooled down.He left the Satka and resumed His seat.From this time onward the devotees took the lesson that,they should not meddle with anybody but allow him to serve Baba as he chooses,as He was capable of gauging the merits and worth of the service rendered unto Him.

Jai SaiRam!!

Baba never fasted Himself,nor did He allow others to do so.The mind of the person who fasts is never at ease,then how could he attain his Paramartha (goal of life)? God is not attained on an empty stomach;first the soul has to be appeased.If there be no food in the stomach and nutrition,with what eyes should we see God,with what tongue should we describe His greatness and with what ears should we hear the same? In short,when all our organs get their proper nutrition and are sound,we can practise devotion and other Sadhanas to attain God.Therefore,neither fasting nor over-eating is good.Moderation in diet is really wholesome,both to the body and mind.

Once Mrs.Gokhale,came to Shirdi with an introductory letter,from Mrs.Kashibai Kanitkar (a devotee of Baba),to Dada Kelkar.She came to Baba,with a determination to sit at Baba’s Feet and observe a three days fast.The previous day Baba said to Dada Kelkar that He would not allow his children to starve during the Shimga,i.e Holi holidays and that if they had to starve,why was He there?Next day when the woman went with Dada Kelkar and sat at Baba’s Feet,Baba at once said to her, “What is the necessity of fasting?Go to Dadabhat’s house,prepare the dish of Puran Polis (wheat rotis with gram-flour and jaggery),feed his children and yourself too”.Shimga holidays were on.Mrs.Kelkar was then going through her menses,and there was nobody to cook in Dadabhat’s house.So Baba’s advice was very timely.Then Mrs.Gokhale had to go to Dadabhat’s house and prepare the dish,as directed.She cooked that day,fed others and herself.What a good story and how beautiful its import!

Encouraging Good Thoughts to Fruition

It is interesting to note how Sai Baba encouraged good thoughts.You have to surrender yourself completely to Him with love and devotion and then you will see¬† how He helps you,through out.Some saint has said that,when you get a good thought,immediately after awakening from sleep,and if you develop the same afterwards during the day,your intellect will be unfolded and your mind will attain calmness.Hemadpant wanted to try this.One Wednesday night before going to bed,he thought “Tommorrow is Thursday – an auspicious day and the place,viz.Shirdi is so holy;so,let me pass the whole day in remembering and celebrating Ram-naam”,and then,he slept off.Next morning when he got up he remembered without any effort,the name of Ram and was much pleased.After finishing his morning duties,he went to see Baba with flowers.When he left Dixit Wada and was passing by Buti Wada (present Samadhi Mandir) he heard a beautiful song,that was being sung nicely by one Aurangabadkar in the Masjid,before Baba.The song was “Guru-kripanjan payo mere bhai” Eknath,in which he says that ‘he got collyrium in the form of his Guru’s grace which opened his vision and made him see Ram,in and out,in sleep,dream and walking state and everywhere’.There were so many songs but why was this song particularly by Aurangabadkar,a devotee of Baba?Is this not a curious coincidence arranged by Baba to amplify the determination of Hemadpant to sing unceasingly Ram-naam during the day?

All saints agree and lay stress upon the efficacy of uttering Ram’s (God’s) name,in fulfilling the ambitions of the Bhaktas and in protecting and saving them from all calamities.

Love and affection of our Sai

God was originally formless.He assumed a form for the sake of Bhaktas.With the help of Maya,He played the part of an Actor in the big drama of the universe.Let us remember and visualize Shri Sai.Let us go to Shirdi and see carefully the programme after the noon-Arati.After the Arati ceremony was over,Sai used to come out of the Masjid and standing on its edge,distribute Udi to the devotees with very kind,gracious and loving looks.The Bhaktas also got up with equal fervour,clasped His feet and had the bliss of Udi.Baba passed handfuls of Udi into the palms of the devotees and marked their forheads with Udi with His own hands.The love He bore for them in His heart,was boundless.Then He addressed the Bhaktas, “Oh Bhau,go home to take your lunch,you Anna,go to your lodgings,you Bapu,enjoy your meal”.In this way,He accosted each and every devotee and sent them home.Even now you can have the pleasure of these sights,if you bring into play your imagination.Now,bringing Sai in our mental vision,let us meditate on Him,from His feet upwards to His face,prostrating yourself before Him humbly,lovingly and reverentially.

Goal of Life

The life of this Saint is naturally sweet.His various doings,eating,walking and His natural sayings are also sweet.His life is Bliss Incarnate.Sai gave bliss to His devotees as a means of remembrance.He gave them various stories of duty and action,which ultimately led them to true religion.His object may be,that people should live happily in this world but they should be ever cautious,and achieve the object of their life,viz.self-realization.We get human body as a result of merits in past births and it is worth-while that,with its aid,we should attain devotion and liberation in this life.So,we should never be lazy but always be on the alert to gain our goal of life.

If you hear the leelas (stories) of Sai daily,you will always see Him.Day and night you will remember Him in your mind.When you assimliate Sai in this way,your mind will lose its fickleness,and if you go on in this manner,it will finally be merged in Pure Conciousness.