Sai Satcharitra Chapter 30

In this Chapter, the story of two more devotees that were drawn to Shirdi is narrated.

Preliminary

Bow to the kind Sai Who is the Abode of Mercy and loves His devotees dearly. Through merely receiving His darshan, He does away with their fear of this worldly existence and saves them from calamities. He was first formless, but on account of the devotion of His devotees, He was obliged to take a form. To liberate and help devotees attain self-realization is the mission of saints and for Sai−the  greatest of the saints− that mission was inevitable. Those who take refuge at His Feet have all their sins destroyed and their progress is certain. Even Brahmins from holy places come to Him and read scriptures and chant the Gayatri Mantra in His presence. We, who are weak and without any merits, do not know what devotion truly is; but we do know that though everyone else may abandon us, Sai won’t forsake us. Those whom He favors get enormous strength, discrimination between the Unreal and the Real and knowledge.

Sai always knows the desires of His devotees and fulfills the same. Hence, they get what they want and are grateful. So we invoke His aid and prostrate ourselves before Him. Forgetting all our faults, we let Him free us from all anxieties. He, who is overcome with calamities and remembers and prays to Sai, will get his mind calmed and pacified through His grace.

Sai, the ocean of mercy, says Hemadpant, favored him and the result is this work – The Sai-Satcharitra. Otherwise, what qualifications had he to undertake this enterprise? But as Sai took all the responsibility, Hemadpant felt no burden or concern about this. When the powerful Light of Knowledge was there to inspire his speech and pen, why should he entertain any doubt or feel any anxiety? Sai got the service, in the form of this book, done by him. This is due to the accumulation of Hemadpant’s merits in his past births; Therefore, he feels he is fortunate and blessed.

The following story is not a mere tale, but pure nectar. He who drinks it will realize Sai’s greatness and all-pervasiveness. Those who want to argue and criticize should not read these stories. What is needed here is not discussion but unlimited love and devotion. Learned, devout and faithful believers or those who consider themselves servants of the Saints will like and appreciate these stories, while others will take them to be mere fables.

Fortunate devotees of Baba will find Sai-leelas to be a wish-fulfilling tree. Drinking this nectar of Sai-leelas will liberate ignorant souls, satisfy the house-holders and will be a sadhana to the aspirants.

Kakaji Vaidya

In a place called Vani, in the district of Nasik, there lived a man named Kakaji Vaidya. He was the priest in the Temple of the Goddess Sapta-Shringi. He was so overwhelmed with adverse circumstances and calamities that he lost his peace of mind and became quite restless. Under such circumstances, one evening he went into the temple of the Goddess and prayed unto Her from the bottom of his heart and invoked Her aid to free him from anxiety. The Goddess was pleased with his devotion and the same night appeared to him in his dreams and said, “You go to Baba and then your mind will become calm and composed.”

Kakaji was anxious to know from Her who this Baba was, but before he could get any explanation he was awakened. Then he began to wonder who this Baba might be. After some thought, he resolved that Baba might be Tryambakeshwar (Lord Shiva). So he went to the holy place Tryambak (in the Nasik District) and stayed there for ten days.

During this period, he bathed early in the morning, chanted the Rudra hymns, performed the Abhishekam (a ritual of pouring a stream of fresh cold water over the Pindi(Shiva’s form)) and performed other religious rites. But despite all this, he was just as restless as before. Then he returned home and again invoked the Goddess pitifully. That night, She again appeared in his dreams and said, “Why did you go to Tryambakeshwar in vain? I mean, Shri Sai Samarth of Shirdi.”

The question before Kakaji now was how and when he could go to Shirdi and see Baba. If anybody is really earnest to see a Saint, God fulfills his wish. In fact, the Saint and God are one and the same and there isn’t any difference between them. If anybody believes that they can go and see a Saint at their own free will, that would simply be boastful. Unless the Saint wills it, no one is able to go and see him. Even the leaf of a tree won’t move without his bidding. The more anxious a Bhakta is to visit the saint, the more quickly and effectively is his wish satisfied. He who invites anybody for a visit also arranges everything for his reception, and this happened with Kakaji too.

Shama’s Vows

When Kakaji was thinking about visiting Shirdi, a guest came to take him to Shirdi. That person was Shama, a very close and intimate devotee of Baba. We shall now see how and why he came to Vani.

Shama was severely ill when he was very young and his mother had taken a vow to her family Goddess, Sapta-Shringi at Vani. She vowed that if her son recovered, she would bring and dedicate him at Her feet. After a few years, the mother herself suffered a severe bout of ring-worms on her breasts. At that time, she again made another vow to her Deity that if she recovered, she would offer the Goddess two silver breasts. These two vows remained unfulfilled. At her death-bed, she called her son Shama and drew his attention to the vows and after making him promise that he would fulfill the vows, she breathed her last. After some time, Shama forgot about these vows and thus 30 years elapsed. At about this time, a famous astrologer had come to Shirdi and stayed there for a month. His predictions in the case of Bapusaheb Booty and others came true and everybody was satisfied. Shama’s younger brother, Bapaji, consulted him and was told that his mother’s vows, which his elder brother had promised to fulfill, were not yet fulfilled. Hence, the Goddess was not pleased with them and was thus bringing troubles upon them. Bapaji told his brother Shama who was then reminded of the unfulfilled vows.

Shama believed any further delay would be dangerous, so he called a goldsmith and got a pair of silver breasts prepared. Then he went to the Masjid, prostrated himself before Baba and placed before Him the two silver breasts. He requested Baba to accept them and free him from the vows, as he believed Sai was his Sapta-Shringi Goddess incarnate. Then Baba insisted that Shama go in person to the temple of Sapta-Shringi and offer them at the feet of the Goddess. Then after taking Baba’s permission and Udi, he left for Vani and came to Kakaji’s house. Kakaji was then very anxious to visit Baba and Shama went there to see him at that very moment. What a truly divine miracle this was!

Kakaji asked him who he was and whence he had come. On learning that he was from Shirdi, Kakaji at once embraced Shama. He was so overpowered with love! Then they talked about Sai-leelas and after finishing the rites of Shama’s vows, they both left for Shirdi. On reaching the place, Kakaji went to the Masjid and fell at Baba’s Feet. His eyes were soon filled with tears, and his mind attained calmness instantly. Just as the vision of the Goddess had suggested, as soon as he saw Baba, his mind lost all its restlessness and it became calm and composed.

Kakaji began to wonder, “What a wonderful power this is! Baba said nothing, there were no questions or answers, no benediction was pronounced and the mere darshana itself was so conducive to happiness; The restlessness of my mind disappeared simply by receiving darshan and the consciousness of joy came upon me. This is what is called the greatness of darshan.” His vision was fixed on Sai’s feet and he was speechless. Upon hearing about Baba’s Leelas, his joy knew no bounds. He surrendered himself completely to Baba, forgot his anxiety and cares and got undiluted happiness. He lived in Shirdi, happily, for twelve days and left after receiving Udi and blessings from Baba.

Khushalchand of Rahata

It is said that a dream we see in the early hours of the morning often turns out true. This may be so, but regarding Baba’s dreams there was no restriction of time. To quote an instance, Baba told Kakasaheb Dixit one afternoon to go to Rahata and bring Khushalchand, as He had not seen him for a long time. Kakasaheb took a tanga(small horse-drawn cart) and went to Rahata to fetch Khushalchand.

He saw Khushalchand and gave him Baba’s message. Hearing it, Khushalchand was surprised and said that when he was taking a nap after lunch, Baba appeared in his dreams and asked him to come to Shirdi immediately. As he had no horse of his own nearby, he had sent his son to inform Baba. As his son was crossing the village border, Dixit’s tanga turned up. Dixit then said that he had been sent by Baba to bring him to Shirdi. Then they both went in the tanga back to Shirdi; Khushalchand saw Baba and everyone was pleased. Seeing this Leela, Khushalchand was greatly moved.

Ramlal from Bombay

Once, a gentleman from Bombay named Ramlal had a dream in which Baba appeared and asked him to come and see him. Baba appeared to him as a saint, but Ramlal did not know who this saint was or where he lived.

He wanted to meet the Saint, but as he did not know who this saint was, he had no idea what to do. But He Who calls anybody for a meeting also makes the necessary arrangements for the same. That is exactly what happened in this case. That very afternoon, when he was walking on the street, he saw a picture of a saint in a shop. The saint he saw in the picture looked exactly like the saint in his dream. Upon making enquiries, he came to know that the picture was of Sai Baba of Shirdi. Shortly afterwards, he went to Shirdi and stayed there till his death.

In this way, Baba brought His devotees to Shirdi for darshan and satisfied their wants and desires.

Adapted from the original Marathi Book SHRI SAI SATCHARITA By Govind Raghunath Dabholkar alias ‘Hemadpant’

Om Sai Om Sai Sadguru Sai

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