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Thursday May 26, 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
dwarkamai pose
Seated in Dwarkamai

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FEATURE: Sri Sai's attitude towards reading and self-enquiry

Saibaba appears to have understood that the literary forms are only a focus for the underlying truths that are not nearly so susceptible to ethnic and religious pigeonholes. Author Kevin Shepard writes in his book "Gurus-Rediscovered" (ISBN: 9780950868028) -

At one time, pupils at Shirdi were in the habit of approaching Saibaba with books that each found inspiring. The objective was to obtain his blessings in their studies. On one of these occasions, a visitor came empty handed. The others expected the adept to rebuke this man, but instead Saibaba gave him an expansive smile and told him that he was wise - since wisdom could not be assimilated even by reading many pages of the scriptures. True wisdom was concealed in one's own atman. Even in respect of understanding meditation, one must first understand the meditator.

The human psychology is a mass of contradictions and conflicts he stressed - how then can a man assimilate anything from outside? The impressions of such a confused and un-integrated psychology would inevitably be unreliable. "We have only to see the Self and the rest becomes revealed," he is reported to have said on another occasion. But it is apparent that he considered this to be a rare event. Hence he repeatedly urged some of his pupils, probably the more attentive ones, to: Think always about this question - Who am I?

This stress on vichar (self-enquiry) did not mean any neglect of the teacher, as is sometimes thought by persons intent upon self-remembering. The essential emphasis in Saibaba's verbal injunctions was the need for rapport with the teacher. The living potency of his baraka (blessing) was the proof here, something stronger than scriptures or dogmas. Pupils found that stray remarks of his caused an impact out of all proportion to a pedantic analysis of his words. One sentence from Saibaba was enough to acutely affect someone's life for days, weeks, or even months and years on end. His words might sting or they might heal; none could predict what would come. His words might be in the form of an instruction, something which had to be carried out no matter what if the pupil wished to continue further. This might well involve the elimination of an undesirable personal trait or the elimination of a new and more desirable one - although this would not be explicit in the order given. It might be something, which appeared to have no connection at all with the "spiritual life" as normally understood. It is this concrete application to life events which distinguishes the real teacher, something quite apart from standard religio-mystical attitudes.

(compiled by Sai Vichaar Team)

CONTRIBUTED ARTICLE: Prasāda

'Prasāda' is a material substance that is first offered to the Lord and then consumed. In Hinduism, Prasāda is anything, usually edible or other material that is first offered to a deity, saint, Perfect Master or an Avatar and then distributed in their name. The prasāda has the deity's blessing residing within it.

In its material sense, prasāda is created by a process of giving and receiving between a devotee and the divine form. For example, a devotee makes an offering of a material substance such as coins, cloth, flowers, fruits, or sweets—which is called 'naivedya'. The deity then 'enjoys' or tastes a bit of the offering, which is then temporarily known as 'bhogya'. This now-divinely invested substance is called prasāda, and is received by the devotee to be eaten, worn, stored, etc. It may be the same material that was originally offered, or material offered by one and then re-distributed to other devotees.

Service of offerings of edible products such as grocery, sweets, cooked food, fruits at Holy places, Temples, Saint's abode and specifically done with the intention of feeding the hungry is termed as 'Annadana' and the fruits accrued thereof is generally referred to 'Annadana Bhukti'

While one feels happy on their success or counts the blessings bestowed on them, it is appropriate to consider the sufferings of others and act with benevolence. All faiths accord primary importance to the act of giving of food as the single major charitable one can do without much trouble.

(Sai Vichaar Team)

YOUNG DEVOTEES CORNER:

Rishon Drawing
Baba blessing all

Rishon 8 years

The picture on the left was submitted by parents of Rishon who is eight years old. Says Rishon, "I have drawn a photo of Baba blessing all of us. Whatever we ask to Baba, He will give that."

Please enjoy. Thanks to parents of Rishon.  Please encourage your young ones to contribute.

HAIKU:

When you are hurt by others -
Says Shree Guru
Forgive yet seek not revenge

EXPERIENCE OF DEVOTEES:

Sai Devotee
I have prayed baba that I would share my experiences here if my wishes are fulfilled. Me and my family are firm believers of Baba since long. I used to visit Baba's temple every thursday for evening aarthi, as it used to give me immense happiness and peace. Baba had helped me a lot many times. For instance, when my marriage was getting delayed, I used to pray baba regularly and though delayed, I have got a very loving and caring husband. When I was pregnant, I prayed Baba for a healthy boy child, and with Baba's grace my son was born on a Thursday. Thank you Baba for all the blessings you have given me. I am sorry that I could not keep my faith on you always. Few months back I was very angry with Baba, that I have removed him my pooja place for not hearing our problems. My sister has been suffering since very long without children. I was very angry with Baba, that I decided not to believe in him anymore. But much to my surprise, after few days one of our friend gifted us a Sainath's calender. A few days later, I have got the much awaited sweet news that my sister has concieved. Thank you so much Baba. Please forgive me for not keeping my faith on you. I shall follow your path with much more love and devotion towards you from here on. May baba show us the right path always.

QUOTATION OF THE WEEK:

“If you spread your palms with devotion before Me, I am immediately with you, day and night. Though, I am here bodily, still I know what you do; beyond the seven seas.” - 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 You
Your answer can go here.

EVENTS:

Om Sai Mandir, New York
Om Sai Mandir is open daily from 8 am to 9 pm in Flushing, New York.  Devotees living in the tri-state area or those visiting New York desirous of visiting the temple may get more details from www dot OmSaiMandir dot org.

FROM THE EDITORS KEYBOARD:

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The Question of the week is,

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

Humbly Yours,
The Editor

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