Sai Satcharitra Chapter 35

This Chapter also continues the subject of the importance of Udi and it also gives two cases in which Baba was tested and not found wanting.

Preliminary

In spiritual matters or endeavors, sectarianism is the greatest bar to our progress. Those who believe that God is formless, are heard saying that to believe that God has a form is an illusion and that Saints are merely human. Then why should they bow before these Saints and offer Dakshina? Persons belonging to other sects will also raise objections and say, “Why should we bow and offer allegiance to other Saints, since we have our own Sadgurus?” Similar objections regarding Sai Baba have been heard before and are heard even now. Some said that when they went to Shirdi, Baba asked for Dakshina from them; “Is it good that Saints should collect money in this fashion? If they do so, where is their Sainthood?” they asked. But there are many instances where men went to Shirdi to scoff, but remained there to pray. Two such instances are given below.

Kaka Mahajani’s Friend

A friend of Kaka Mahajani’s was a devotee of God without form and was averse to idolatry. Out of curiosity, he agreed to go to Shirdi with Kaka Mahajani on two conditions: That he would neither bow to Baba nor pay Him any Dakshina. Kaka agreed to these conditions and they both left Bombay on a Saturday night and reached Shirdi the next morning. As soon as their feet touched the steps of the Masjid, Baba, looking at the friend from a distance, addressed him with sweet words, “Oh, welcome sir!” The voice in which he said these words was a very peculiar one. It resembled the voice of the friend’s father. It reminded him of his departed father and sent a joyous thrill through his body. What an enchanting power the voice had! Rather surprised, the friend said, “This is no doubt the voice of my father”. Then he went up and forgetting his resolution, placed his head upon Baba’s Feet.

Then Baba asked for Dakshina from Kaka twice, once in the morning and again at noon. The friend whispered to Kaka, “Baba asked for Dakshina from you twice; I am with you, yet why does He omit me?” “Why don’t you ask Baba Himself” was Kaka’s reply. Baba asked Kaka what his friend was whispering and then the friend asked Baba himself whether he should pay any Dakshina. Baba replied, “You had no mind to pay, so you were not asked; but if you want to pay now you may.” Then the friend paid 17 Rupees as Dakshina, the same amount that Kaka paid. Baba then addressed him with a few words of advice, “You do away with and destroy the wall (sense of difference) between us, so that we can see and meet each other face to face”. Then Baba allowed them to depart; Though the weather was cloudy and threatening, Baba assured them of their safe journey and both of them reached Bombay safely. When he reached home and opened the doors and windows of his house, he found two sparrows had fallen dead on the floor and one flew out through a window. He thought that if he had left the windows open, two sparrows would have been saved, but thought about it again and realized that they had met their fate and that Baba had sent him back soon enough to save the third sparrow.

Kaka Mahajani’s Boss

Kaka was a Manager in the firm Thakkar Dharmasey Jethabhai, a solicitor in Bombay. The Boss and the Manager were close; Mr. Thakkar knew that Kaka often went to Shirdi, stayed there for a few days and returned when Baba permitted him to. Out of curiosity and in order to test Baba, Mr. Thakkar decided to go to Shirdi with Kaka during the Shimga holidays. As Kaka’s return was uncertain, Thakkar took another man with him as an associate. The three started together and Kaka bought two seers of raisins (dried grapes with seeds), on the way, for Baba. They reached Shirdi in due course and went to the Masjid to receive Baba’s darshan. Babasaheb Tarkhad was there and Mr. Thakkar asked him why he had come there. “To receive darshan“, Tarkhad replied. Mr. Thakkar asked if miracles took place here and Tarkhad replied that it (to see miracles) was not his intention. He said that the earnest intentions of the Bhaktas were satisfied here. Then Kaka prostrated himself before Baba and offered the raisins to Him. Baba ordered them to be distributed. Mr. Thakkar got a few of them. He did not like raisins and he was advised by his doctor not to eat them without washing and cleaning them. So he was in a fix; He did not want to eat them, nor could he reject them. To keep up formalities, he put them into his mouth, but did not know what to do with the seeds. He could not spit them out onto the floor of the Masjid, so he pocketed them against his wishes. He then thought that if Baba was a Saint, how could He be ignorant of his dislike for the raisins and why would He force them on him? When this thought arose in his mind, Baba again gave him some more raisins. He did not want to eat them, but held onto them. Then Baba asked him to eat them. He obeyed and found, to his surprise, that they were all seedless. He wanted to see miracles and here was one. He knew that Baba had read his thoughts and, as per his wishes, converted raisins (with seeds) into seedless ones. What wonderful power! To test Baba further, he asked Tarkhad, who was sitting nearby and also had raisins, “What kind of grapes have you got?” Tarkhad replied, “The variety with seeds.” Mr. Thakkar was again surprised to hear this. Then, to confirm his growing faith, Thakkar thought that if Baba was a real Saint, the raisins should now be given to Kaka first. Reading his thoughts again, Baba ordered that the distribution of raisins should be commenced from Kaka. This proof was sufficient for Thakkar.

Then Shama introduced Mr. Thakkar as Kaka’s Boss and upon which Baba said, “How could he be Kaka’s Boss? Kaka has got a different Boss altogether”. Kaka appreciated this reply. Forgetting his resolve, Thakkar bowed before Baba and returned to the Wada.

After the noon-Arati was over, they all went to the Masjid to take Baba’s leave for their departure. Shama spoke for them and Baba then spoke as follows:

“There was a fickle-minded gentleman. He had health and wealth and was free from both physical and mental afflictions, but he took on needless anxieties and burdens and wandered here and there; thus losing his peace of mind. Sometimes he dropped these burdens and at other times carried them again. His mind knew no steadiness; Seeing his state, I took pity on him and said, “Please keep your faith in any one place (point) you like; why roam like this? Stick quietly to one place.”

Thakkar at once recognized that this was an exact description of him. He wished that Kaka would also return with him, but no one expected that Kaka would be allowed to leave Shirdi so soon. Baba read this thought too and permitted Kaka to return with his Boss. Thus, Thakkar got more proof of Baba’s omniscience.

Then Baba asked Kaka for 15 rupees as Dakshina and received it. Baba then said to Kaka, “If I take one rupee as Dakshina from anybody, I have to return it tenfold to him. I never take anything gratis. I never ask anyone indiscriminately; I only ask and take from him whom the Fakir (God) points out. If anyone is indebted formerly to the Fakir, money is received from him. The donor gives and sows his seeds, only to reap a rich harvest in the future. Wealth should be the means to work out Dharma. If it is used for personal enjoyment, it is wasted. Unless you have given it before, you do not get it now. So the best way to receive is to give. The giving of Dakshina advances Vairagya (Non-attachment) and thereby Bhakti and Jnana. Give one and receive tenfold”.

On hearing these words, Mr. Thakkar gave Baba 15 rupees as Dakshina, forgetting his resolve not to do so. He felt he had done well in coming to Shirdi, as all his doubts were solved and had learned so much.

Baba’s skill in handling such cases was unique. Though He did all these things, He was totally detached from them. Whether anybody bowed to Him or not, or whether anybody gave Him Dakshina or not, it was the same to Him. He never disrespected anyone; He felt no pleasure because He was worshipped and no pain because He was disregarded. He transcended the pairs of opposites: pleasure and pain.

The Insomnia Case

A gentleman from Bandra had been suffering from Insomnia for a long time. As soon as he fell asleep, his departed father appeared to him in his dreams and abused and scolded him severely. This broke his sleep and made him restless the whole night. This happened every night and the man did not know what to do. One day, he consulted a devotee of Baba about this. The devotee recommended Udi as the only infallible remedy he knew. He gave him some Udi and asked him to apply a little of it to his forehead before going to bed and to keep a packet of Udi under his pillow. He tried this remedy and found, to his great surprise and joy, that he got sound sleep and that there was no disturbance of any kind. He continued the remedy and always remembered Sai Baba. Then he bought a picture of Sai Baba which he hung on the wall near his pillow and worshipped it daily. On Thursdays, he offered a garland and naivedya. Then he got on well and forgot about all his troubles in the past.

Balaji Patil Newaskar

This man was a great devotee of Baba. He rendered excellent and selfless service to Baba. Every day, he swept and cleaned all the passages and streets in Shirdi through which Baba passed on His daily routine. After Newaskar passed away, this work was done equally-well by a female devotee named Radha-Krishna-Mai and after her by a devotee named Abdoola. When Balaji harvested his corn every year, he brought the entire harvest and placed it before Baba. He then returned with what Baba gave him and his family survived on that amount of corn. This course was followed by him for many years and after him by his son.

The Power and Efficacy of Udi

Once, on the day of Balaji’s death anniversary, a certain number of guests were invited and dinner was prepared for them. But at dinner time, it was found that thrice the number of people invited had turned up. Mrs. Newaskar was in a fix; She thought that the food would not suffice for the people assembled and that if it fell short, the honor of the family would be at stake. Her mother-in-law comforted her by saying, “Don’t be afraid; it is not ours but Sai’s food. Cover every vessel with cloth, put some Udi in each and serve from them without removing their covers; Sai will save us from ignominy.” She did as she was advised and it was found, to their surprise and joy, that not only did the food suffice but plenty of it remained after serving. “If one feels intently, one realizes accordingly” was proved in this case.

Sai Appearing as a Serpent

One day, Raghu Patil of Shirdi went to visit Balaji Patil at Newase. That evening, a serpent had entered the cowshed hissing; All the cattle were afraid and began to move around restlessly. The residents of the house were frightened too, but Balaji thought that it was Sai Who had appeared in his house as a serpent. Not the least bit afraid, he brought a cup of milk, placed it before the serpent and said, “Baba, why do you hiss and make noises? Do you want to frighten us? Take this cup of milk and drink it with a calm mind”. Saying this, he fearlessly sat next to the serpent. The other members of the household were frightened and did not know what to do. A while later, the serpent disappeared and nobody knew where it went. It was not found, though they all searched the cowshed for it.

Balaji had two wives and children. They sometimes went to Shirdi from Newase to receive Baba’s darshana. Then Baba bought saris and other clothes which were given to them with His blessings.

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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