SADGURU SHRI SHIRDI SAIBABA
Important dates / years in his life
“All the saints in the world are working together like a ‘Santa Mala’. I am a flower in that garland. (Garland of Saints)” – Sadguru Shri Shirdi Saibaba.
Among all the Incarnations of the Lord, so far, the most powerful and compassionate Avtar, is Sadguru Shri Sainath Maharaj who lived between 1858 and 1918 in flesh and blood in a remote village, Shirdi which was not so popular in Maharashtra, then.
Sai Baba’s message of ‘Sabka Malik Eak’ (God is one for all) attracted Millions of devotees from every nook and corner of the Earth.
Baba never disclosed about his time of birth, nor about his parents (might be to avoid labeling him by people as “Hindu” or “Muslim” or “Christian”). Moreover, there is a popular saying that “We should not enquire about the source of a River or Rishi”. Interestingly, Baba declared His age as “Millions of Age” reiterating that, He is the ever-living ‘Paramathma’ (God).
It is worrying to note that even the so called ARDENT devotees of Saibaba (as they proclaim) believe and propogate false stories about the birth of this Dattatreya Avtari (incarnation) and have gone to the extent of fixing the date, time and place and parents for this “Ayoni”, Swyamprakasha, Nithya Soori. If they are really followers of Sainath Maharaj, why should they digout something which is purposely forbidden by Baba?. What purpose it would serve?
Appeared as a young boy of 16 years of Age under the neem-tree in a small village – “Shirdi” (Shiladhi) (meaning a place where sugarcane were cultivated), dressed like a wrestler. Before coming to Shirdi, He was trained by his Guru Shri. ‘Venkusa’, who gave all his powers and a brick as his prasad, which was kept by Baba until his Mahasamadhi. In about 1857, Baba left Shirdi.
Baba Re-appeared in Shirdi with a marriage party of Shri. Chand Patil’s family. Shri. Mahalsapthy, the poojari of Khandoba Temple welcomed Baba as “ SAI”. Sai means Saint, one who is above all, God etc., It is a Persian word. Baba refers to “Father”. So, people started calling him respectfully as ‘Sai Baba”.
Baba left his body on the lap of Shri. Mahalsapathy, and returned back to life after 3 days as in the life of Jesus Christ. This was a major incident in Baba’s life which awakened the peoples’ eyes and after that His fame started growing boundlessly.
The Islamic Festival of ‘URS’ and Sandal Procession was started (by giving permission) by Baba.
The Sacred Dhuni was initiated by Sadguru Saibaba for destroying the sins of all those who climb the steps of Mashidi Ayi (Dwarakamai). It was an interesting story. One day after late evening, devotees wanted to have a smoke in Chilum (a mud cigar pipe). For lighting the cigar pipe fire was required. In those days match boxes were not available in Shirdi. One had to bring fire from neighbouring houses. As it was approaching night, all the ‘Chulas’ (stoves burnt with charcole or wood) were put off.
Then the mystic Baba, told: “O.K. I will solve this problem permanently”. Then, he struck a particular place in the Masjid (Dwaraka Mai’s Agnimoola) with his powerful ‘Satka’ ( Baba’s wooden stick which was always with him). Surprisingly fire balls came out from the ground. Baba told all his devotees to keep the fire burning eternally (with the help of wood). Thus came the ALL GIVER, (Kamadhenu), DHUNI.
The sacred Ash from the Dhuni called “UDHI” was given as Prasad by Baba to all those who visited Shirdi as a token of His blessings. The Dhuni is still kept burning for more than 100 years and from Dhuni, the Udhi is sent throughout the Earth as Prasad by Shirdi Saibaba Sansthan. (If you want to get Udhi Prasad, send money order to Shri Sai Baba Sansthan, P.O. Shirdi, Dist. Ahmed Nagar, Maharashtra, Pin: 423 109)
Udhi is acting as the ‘Panacea for all ills”. From the Dhuni, the All India Sai Samaj Founder (Late) H.H. Shri Narasimha Swamyji brought Fire and started Dhuni in Mylapore, Chennai. Devotees can take Darshan of Dhuni and get Udhi, the real asset, (Ishwaryam), here.
This year witnessed two very important incidents in the life of Shri Sainath Maharaj.
The First one, was that Shri Ramnavami (The Birth Day celebration of Lord Shri Ram) was initiated by Baba with the celebration of ‘URS’. Even after 100 years (now 2012) these two festivals are celebrated with the participation of Hindus and Muslims in Lakhs in Shirdi. It is a symbol of ‘Unity’.
The second most important incident was that Shri Sai Baba had installed The Guru Padhukas of Shri Akkalkot Maharaj (Shri Swamy Samarth) designed by Shri Upasani Maharaj with a shlokam (poem):
“Sadaa Nimba Vrukshasja Mooladhi Vasaath
Sudha Shravinam Thikthama priyamtham
Tharoom Kalpavrukshadhigam Sadhayantham
Nama Meeshwaram Sadgurum Sainatham”
under the Neem Tree (through Shri Krishnaji Alibaghkar a devotee directed by Shri Swamy Samarth to see Him in Shirdi Saibaba) stating that “these are my Prabhu’s (Lord’s) Padhukas”. This stands as a great evidence that He is the incarnation of Dattatreya and has took charge after Shri Swamy Samarth. This is further confirmed by the history that when a devotee asked Swamy Samarth that after Swamy’s Samadhi who will take care of him, Swamy told “go to Shirdi, I will be there”.
One may have a doubt that how can Dattatreya take two incarnations (Avtaars) at the same time, as Shri Akkalkot Maharaj and Shri Saibaba were contemporaries? (i.e., living at the same time). The answer is simple. For eg. Lord Vishnu took two avataars at the same time, as Lord Parasuram and Shri Ram. These is no wonder in living in two bodies when the God (Dattatreya) is creating and supporting millions of creatures in the Entire Galaxy of stars and planets. Everything is possible for HIM.
On Vijaya Dasami celebrations, Baba suddenly became furious, removed all his clothes, shouted looking at the devotees, “See me. Am I a Muslim or Hindu”? Then after long consoling by His ardent devotees, He cooled down. He was dressed. That was an indication of His passing away in next 2 years, (a traditional festival of) on Vijaya Dasami. That was Seemallongan. (Crossing the Borders of the village). But Baba indicated His crossing of the Physical life.
People of Shirdi and other devotees who had the rarest opportunity to personally meet and live and be the evidence / eye witness of one of the greatest incarnation of the GOD (Guru Dattatreya) on this Earth since Sahasra Koti Yugas (1000 crore eras), broke into grief when Shirdi Niwasi Samartha Sadguru Sainath Maharaj left His mortal coils on Vijaya Dasami, Tuesday, the 15th October 1918, at 2.30 p.m., as indicated by Baba in 1916, Seemallongan Day.
Baba’s Samadhi Leela (divine play) was just a worldly formality. Even while He was living in Shirdi for about 60 years, He proved that He was present everywhere, by physically appearing to devotees in different parts of the Earth.
‘Sai Charan Das’ (Late) Shri Sai Baba Subramanian experienced His presence (Dharshan) several times and got the direction of Sai Baba in His own voice (Asareeri) from His Samadhi (Tomb) in 1964. (Refer ‘Pesum Deivam’).
‘Swamy Suthan’ Dr. Sayi Kumar (Founder of this Trust) had Baba’s Darshan several times and still getting directions from the Omnipresent, Omnipotent – Bhakta Paradheena (Slave of devotees) Samarth Sadguru Sainath. It is the experience of one and all who surrender to the Holy Feets of Baba and ceaselessly remember Him by chanting His sweet Namamrutha.
Dear reader, you can also get Baba’s unfailing graces by chanting the following Mantra given by Baba to Swamy Suthan.
“Sri Ram, Jai Ram, Jai Jai Sai Ram”
Just before His Samadhi (re-union with the Supreme soul-means in Himself), Baba offered 9 (Nine) coins to His ardent devotee Smt. Lakshmi Bai Shinde as a token of His gratitude for her untiring and affectionate services. He gave 5 coins first and then 4 coins. As Baba is the reincarnation of Lord Krishna, He gave 9 coins as an indicaiton of ‘Navavidha Bhakthi’ (Nine types of Devotion) through which any person who wants to Liberate himself from this Samsara (Worldly life), should practice.
Please ref. Srimad Bhagwatham, 11th Skanda, 10th Chapter, 6th Verse 1st Poem, wherein five types of devotion is explained by the Lord as:
1. Shravanam (Hearing the divine plays)
2. Keertanam (Singing the merits of Lords)
3. Smaranam (Memorising His works)
4. Paada Sevanam (Surrendering to the Holy Feets) and
5. Archanam (Doing Pooja with Holy Names)
In the 2nd Poem, the next four devotional methods have been described thus:
6. Namaskaram (Respecting) with Folded hands
7. Dasya – (Doing Service)
8. Sakhyatva (Friendship), and
9. Aatma Nivedhanam (Sacrificing one’s body, mind and soul to Malik (owner))
You can take darshan of these 9 coins in Shirdi at Smt. Lakshmi Bai’s House near Dwaraka Mayee. Let us remember Baba’s own words for ever:
“None is Born; None Dies. I am in you;
You are in Me. This is the basic Truth”|