Q: Why did Sri Sai Baba lament like an ordinary human being when Megha died, and said, “He is true bhaktha of mine?”
A. by Sarika
Baba in the human form could not hold HIMSELF when Megha, one of HIS ardent devotees passed away. HE had to take on the feelings that accompany ordinary human behavior and mourn the loss of a dear one in the SAI family. If we can imagine the real scene as a spectator and take ourselves back in time to January 19th 912, we can feel BABA’s sentiment. HE was shedding tears like a close blood relative, touching Megha’s mortal remains, spreading flowers on Megha’s body, followed the funeral procession and completed the ceremonial feeding of Brahmins at HIS expense. The care that BABA took to ensure Megha’s spiritual growth and assuring his final Sadgathi are most likely the result of Megha’s Shraddha and Saburi. All of us need to reflect on Megha’s personal traits and devotion that endeared him to BABA. Megha started as a non-believer, but his innocent devotion of Lord Shiva and BABA’s grace caused inner transformation and guided him in his spiritual quest. By shouting at him in the first darshan (1908) BABA wanted to eliminate casteism and religious differences clouding Megha’s mind (a Gujarathi brahmin) and allow him to percieve BABA who was much more than a Muslim fakir. BABA eliminated Megha’s internal apprehensions until he accepted HIM as SHIVA in human form. Megha stands out among BABA’s devotees by virtue of his simplicity, innocent faith and intense devotion. Megha’s physical labour of walking 8 kos (almost 40 kms) to fetch Bel leaves and Ganga water from the Gomathi river to bathe BABA (on Makar Sankranthi day) shows his pure and undiluted love for the LORD. Many are the devotees that spend money lavishly to show devotion, but very few that will toil and sweat to get things done perfectly. Later, he not only did daily noon arti to BABA (standing on one foot!) but also took HIS holy water (Padha tirtham). Secondly, his one pointedness in praying to Shiva in BABA’s form, made him attain the peaks of spiritual success, BABA appeared in his dreams and provided Akshata’s or consecrated rice to draw a Trident or ‘Trishool’ beside BABA’s picture frame in Sathe wada, immediately followed next day by the presentation of a Shiv Ling or Pindi, thus firmly establishing his faith. Megha receiving such gifts from SHIVA himself is not a small achievement. In conclusion, we can imagine the anguish BABA may have felt at Megha’s passing, He would forever miss Megha’s physical presence and devotion in Shirdi. Let us also pray that like Megha, BABA should also accept our humble devotion, remove our doubts, correct our mistakes, forgive our shortcomings and turn us into staunch believers and followers of the wonderful SAI philosophy, which has the power to banish all regional, religious and other fanatic differences and unite humanity.