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News, Views, Analysis, Insights from Shirdi Sai's World
Thursday April 28, 2016   Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Google+

Sai Vichaar a periodic newsletter distributed every Thursday covers the life, philosophy and teachings of Shri Sai Baba of Shirdi and His devotees from around the world. Feel free to contribute your articles and forward this newsletter to your interested associates in its original form.

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IN THIS ISSUE:


  • FEATURE
  • CONTRIBUTED ARTICLE
  • YOUNG DEVOTEES CORNER
  • HAIKU
  • EXPERIENCE OF DEVOTEES
  • QUOTE OF THE WEEK
  • QUESTION OF THE WEEK
  • EVENTS
  • FROM THE EDITORS DESK
Jaykar Painting
Seated in Dwarkamai

Tell a friend:

“ Do you have any relative or friend in Holland? Tell them about Baba's new abode to be inaugurated in Holland on May 9th. See Upcoming events below for more details ” --Editor.

FEATURE: Sai Devotion…No Volition!

The word devotion means several things to several people. Often devotion refers to religiousness and piety. People associate devotion with doing and participating in certain prayers, rituals, or attending spiritual gatherings or going to temples, with some regularity. Some may associate the activities with their chosen deity or god and call themselves they are devotees of so and so gods or deities. Devotion also refers to commitment and loyalty, and a feeling of strong attraction towards one’s chosen object of love. This explanation also may appear to suit Shirdi Saibaba “devotees’, who engage in the above said activities and call themselves Shirdi Saibaba devotees.

The world is witnessing the devotion to Shirdi Saibaba which is growing exponentially, puzzling many people. Individual experiences, religious concepts, and several other borrowed ideas are used to explain the devotion to Saibaba. Madhavrao Vamanrao Adkar wrote in Sai arathis “Jayaa manee jaisaa bhaava tayaa taisaa anubhava", which can be translated as, “ You grant suitable experiences to everybody in accordance with their Faith and devotion”. Here one must also understand that the basis of such an experience with Saibaba arise from one’s deeper tendencies that can vary from person to person. After all, no two individuals are alike!

However, devotion to Saibaba is unique in that one is not said to become a Sai devotee out of their choice or by force, unlike in a religious setting where devotional practices are passed down from elders to younger generations. Even if one worships a certain family god or deity because the practice has been passed on from previous generations, they might still be attracted to Saibaba. Several people testify how they have always bumped into Shirdi Saibaba at times of distress yet they failed to recognize that they belong to Saibaba. The subtle tendencies arising out of religion and culture are so strong and powerful to drub the most vivid and real experiences with Baba, His help, care and saviorhood. How wonderful would it be if one could be freed from those tendencies and rest easy with Sai and Sai alone? Dedicate their very existence to the care and guardianship of Saibaba and not let anything or anyone into their individual exploration of Saibaba?

On different occasions, Baba reportedly said the following: “My people do not come to me of their own accord; it is I who seek and bring them to me”. “I have to take care of my children day and night and give an account to God of every paisa”. “If I do not take care of my children, who else will?”

If one would contemplate on these sayings of Baba, the understanding should emerge that Sai devotion is not just going to temples, participating in spiritual gatherings or other activities just like everyone else, more often done as a routine with a choice, but it is lifelong companionship of Saibaba where Baba’s care and guidance is unabashedly solicited, and where one feels like a calf securely tethered to its mother with the ropes of purest love. This relationship determines how one would look at their activities related to Saibaba, the very living of their everyday lives, a choice less association fostered with mutual love that guarantees lifelong happiness and contentment.

CONTRIBUTED ARTICLE: Talk well of Others

Once two friends were talking in the Wada (Dixit Wada) about Christ. The tenor of their talk was to find fault with Christianity. I also was then present and spoke against its faults. A little while thereafter, I went to take Darshan of Baba, as soon as I began to prostrate before him, Shri Sai Maharaj withdrew His feet from me. I understood from this act of His that I had acted against His daily or frequent advice. I mentally prayed for His forgiveness. Immediately, thereafter, Sai Maharaj spoke, of His own accord, thus; "Come, Kaka, sit" and He stret¬ched out His leg and spoke in Marathi as-"Do not speak well of any nor speak ill of any" Few talk well of people. Mostly people talk ill of others. So do not talk ill of others. Baba used to watch and warn in this way.

Once a group of youths had come for Baba's darshan. They had a great desire to take Baba's photo and with this view they had taken a camera with them. Two days later, they conveyed this object to Shri Madhavrao Deshpande viz. on his return from Lendi Bagh, when He approached the Wada of Rao Bahadur Sathe, Baba should be requested to stay there for a few minutes so that a photo might be taken. This was the plan made by Shri Madhavrao. In accordance with this plan, the group of youths, led by Madhavrao, waited with a camera ready for an exposure of Maharaj. When Sai Maharaj came, He said to, Madhavrao, "Shama, what is this?" Madhavrao replied, "O God! This group has a desire to have your photo taken. So they are standing here,” Sai Maharaj said, "Tell these boys not to take any photo. It will be enough to demolish the wall." So saying He left the place without stopping even for a minute. What He meant to convey was that the body, whose photo was intended to be taken, was only 3 cubits high. The body was not, by any means, the real form of Sai Maharaj. It was but the resemblance of the soul, which, due to the Dwaita wall of ignorance, appeared as such (i.e., as the person). Unless this wall of avidya was pulled down, it was not possible to see or understand the real form of Sai Maharaj. The secret of His instruction must be that His devotees should pull down this wall and realize Sai Maharaj in His true form.

On one occasion a gentleman of the Prabhu community, who had worked for some years in the studio of a famous photographer in Bombay, came for Darshan of Sai Maharaj. He too had taken with him a camera with the idea of taking a photo of Sai Maharaj. He desired to do so without obtaining a formal permission from Sai Maharaj. Accordingly he took a photo, but when the plate was developed, instead of Baba's likeness appearing on the negative he found his own Guru's. At this extraordinary chamatkar, the photographer was greatly pleased, and he learnt from this leela of Sai Maharaj that one should be firm in his devotion (Upasana) to his own guru.

(Source: extracts from H.S.Dixit's diary – by Shri S. M Garje, Pune vide Shri Saileela Masik, June 1997)

YOUNG DEVOTEES CORNER:


Trunk of Life
Sai is my trunk of life

Shivani
God created many universes. He gave life and continues to give life to so many beings.  He encompasses everything. Life blossomed from Him.

Sai Baba is my God because He so kindly has given me His lending hand to hold on to.  I hold on to the branch of Life, the beautiful life He has given me.

He sits within my heart and watches/protects me always, hence the Eye within the trunk of life in my painting.  Sai Baba is beyond any religion, He loves all. He showers his love and nurtures all of us, His children.

(Please send us contributions from young devotees)

HAIKU:

A benefactor -
A taskmaster as well
Is the great Shree Guru!
 
(Source: Sai Vichaar Team)

EXPERIENCE OF DEVOTEES:

Geeta
I am an ardent devotee of Baba. Whenever I go out I apply vibhuti on my forehead. On one such occasion when I went out with my Mother Applying vibhuti on my forehead I had a very bad experience. While returning back my gold chain for snatched by two men on the bike. It came as a very rude shock to me. After reaching home I wondered why did this happen? I was annoyed with Baba for not taking care of me. But over the next few years I realised I have gained much more than what I lost. My daughter's marriage was fixed and to my utter disbelief I never faced any problem in arranging gold ornaments for her without any financial crunch. I was surprised I did not face any problem as far as money is concerned and with Baba's blessings my daughter's married went off very well. Baba forgive me for getting annoyed. You have given me much more than what I lost.

Ganeshbabu Chebolu
I am so happy to share these few lines of mine as sai experiences in my daily life. Sai is agreat master guiding all of us in a prudent way. Recently, I happened to visit Naga Sai Mandir in zagadgirigutta,Hyderabad.There I have seen a lot of descipline, dedication and devoted services by the Team. I was with them till madhyahna aarathi and had anna prasad. I am so happy to share certain good thoughts of Sai before aarathi for a span of half an hour. The devotees also more responsive about Sai programmes there. LateE Smt Thayaramma, initiated for the construction of this Sai mandir in
zagadgirigutta of Hyderabad. I can see the omni presence of Sai there. He remains in the hearts of the people who serves the poor and needy. I have seen many poor and hungry people took anna prasad even in the hot sun. SAI saves every devotee if he has hard and concrete faith over his master.

Naresh
In 2009 I took one of my medical licencing exam, Step 3 in USA. I had no hope to pass that exam because I didn't do well on that exam. I had no confidence about the pass result. I prayed to Baba, asking him to give me a pass result in that exam. With Baba's grace I passed that exam with 76%. It would have not been possible to pass that exam with out his grace and blessings. Thank you Baba for your blessing an support. Baba, bless everyone in this world. Ever shower your blessings on our family and everyone who comes to you with good wishes.

QUOTATION OF THE WEEK:

“Believe Me, though I pass away, My bones in My tomb would be speaking, moving and communicating with those, who relinquish themselves whole-heartedly to Me.” - Shri Sai Baba of Shirdi

QUESTION OF THE WEEK:


Q: What may be the reasons for the growth of Shirdi Saibaba movement worldwide?

A. by Sai Devotee
SaiBaba is whatever we want him to be.He is as deep as ocean and full of knowledge to the wise seeker,He is the kind Father who picks up his children when they fall down and gently wipe away their tears and bring peace to them.He does not want any puja or mantra or other rites.All He wants from us is Faith in His words and patience to wait for His Grace.He was and is all to all human beings and non humans as well.he is our very existence and there is no God but He.We are lucky to be born as humans and to have a SathGuru like our mother Sai.Let us spend every moment of our life,following His words and spreading His message of love.

A. by Pushpa
I try to follow path shown by Baba as its the way to live life fearlessly; Any decision taken by following path shown by Baba and leaving results to him gives peace, satisfaction.

A. by Ketayun
If we follow Baba's plan on how to live it makes us deserving of His blessings. My prayer is always asking to be shown the Right Path and given the ability to follow it. Baba is pure love and gives us every sweet gift at the right time when we can enjoy it to the fullest. Even when a wish seems to be ignored it is because it is not in our best interest and not for any other reason. We are extremely fortunate to have Baba directing our life.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

St Shirdi Sai Baba Foundation Netherlands
Sai devotees will welcome Baba's arrival in Holland on May 9th, 2016.  For temple inauguration ceremony information and other details go to:  sai-mandir-olst.nl

FROM THE EDITORS KEYBOARD:

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The Question of the week is,

Q. Why should one follow or adhere to the path shown by Shirdi Sai Baba?

Humbly Yours,
The Editor

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