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Friday, May 2, 2008

Children's Stories (Chapter 24 & 25)





Chapter 24



One may or may not agree, but time, which is so powerful, affects our lives in a major way. If the time is good, we will be devoted towards God and have firm faith and conviction in Him. We will also meet similar people in life.
Similarly, there was a very poor man who was a temporary employee in the civil courts of Thane. One day he went to Shri Kopineshwar temple to listen to the Bhajans by Shri Dasganu. He was Baba's devotee so he prayed to Baba that, "Oh! Baba. I am a very poor man and am unable to support my family. If, with your blessings, I pass my interview I will touch your feet and distribute sugar candy in your name”
Because of Baba's grace Shri Cholkar not only passed the interview but got a permanent posting as well. Now he had to fulfill his vow and so he began to save money. One of his ways to save money was that he started taking tea without sugar. Whatever he saved in this manner, he collected it and reached Shirdi. He went straight to the Masjid and bowed his head at Baba’s feet and offered Him the sugar candy (a piece of sugar). At that time Baba’s devotee Shri Bapu Saheb Jog was also present there. Baba asked Bapu Saheb Jog to show Shri Cholkar the village of Shirdi and to serve him tea with more than enough sugar.
On hearing this, Cholkar started crying and he fell on Baba’s feet mesmerised by His powers.



Bow to Sri Sai – Peace be to all



Chapter 25



Baba never propagated religious fasting, but if some devotee wished to do so for any other deity, Baba always said that one should have firm faith, more than anything else, in one's God and should never let go of His thoughts. The mother of Shri B.V. Dev, who was Mamlatdar of Dahanu (District Thane), had kept about 25-30 fasts and wanted to do the concluding ceremony. In this ceremony, about 200 people were expected to participate in the Udyapan for dinner. Shri B.V. Dev fixed a date and wrote a letter to Bapu Saheb Jog, a resident of Shirdi that said, "Kindly invite Sri Sai Baba on my behalf and request Him to visit Dahanu and participate in the Udyapan ceremony. Bapu Saheb Jog read the letter aloud to Baba. Baba said, "I am always present for everyone who remembers me and calls me with love and devotion. I do not require any conveyance to go there. Whoever calls me affectionately, I present myself before him in no time. Send him a letter saying that I will reach there along with two other persons." Jog wrote a letter to Shri Dev, as instructed by Baba and posted it. On receiving the letter Shri Dev became very happy. However he was slightly confused as he knew very well that Baba never went anywhere beyond Rahata/ Rui, and Neem Gaon. But nothing is impossible for God. He is omnipresent/ therefore he can appear anywhere anytime and in any form.
A few days before the Udyapan ceremony one saintly person arrived at the station and was dressed in Bengali attire. Fie went straight away to the station master and started asking for donation. The station master suggested him to go to the Mamlatdar. Suddenly the Mamlatdar also reached there. He told the saintly person that a senior citizen named Sri Rao Saheb Narottam Sethi of this village had already prepared a list of names based on which donations were made for religious purposes and it won't be fair to prepare another name list. He told the saint to come after two or four months. Hearing this the recluse went away from there and he returned to the Mamlatdar after a month. Seeing him the Mamlatdar thought that the saint had come to collect donation. But the recluse said to the Mamlatdar "I have not come here for any sort of contribution but have come to have food” Dev said "You're welcome” The recluse said "I have two children with me” Shri Dev said "It will take some time to prepare the meals. So if you say then I will send someone to call the children?” The recluse told Dev "You don't worry. We will reach here in time." At sharp 12 noon all the three came there and returned after taking their meals.
After the completion of the Udyapan ceremony, Shri Dev wrote a letter to Bapu Saheb Jog saying, “Baba has not kept his promise. He did not attend our ceremony." Jog went to the Masjid and began to read the letter in front of Baba. Even before he could start reading out the letter, Baba said to Jog, "I have kept my promise. As per my statement, I went there to take meals along with two persons. Ask him if he met a saint with two boys there? Tell him it is of no use if he does not recognize me after giving me the invitation? Always remember that I shall sacrifice anything to fulfill my promise and my words will never be untrue”
Hearing these words Jog was pleased and he immediately wrote back a reply to Shri Dev. After reading the letter, tears welled up in Dev's eyes and he became angry with himself. He thought that how could he have been so foolish and not be able to understand that the saint was none other than Baba Himself. He felt worse as Baba had mentioned in His earlier letter that He would come with two more people and that is how it happened.
Children! It is evident from the above story that we should have full faith in Sai Baba's words. Baba's appearing in your dream can change your life and rid you of your sins. It is even a greater blessing to be able to offer meals to Baba. In reality, Shri Dev was lucky as he had these special blessings of Baba.

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