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Friday, December 26, 2008

Memorable Last Meeting with Sai

You may also be interested to read previously posted chapter of the book 'Live Experiences of Tarkhad Family'
1. Experiences of Tarkhad Family with Sai Baba - Preface
2. Meeting with Shirdi Sai
3. Second Meeting with Shirdi Sai Baba
4. Sai Baba's Sandalwood Mandir
5. Sai the Saviour of Ganesh Murti
6. Frightful Sight of Goddess Mari Aai
7. Meeting with Lord Vithoba of Pandharpur
8. Facing Death in a Cloudburst in Shirdi
9. Resurrection of a dead body
10. Sai's Golden Test
11. 9TH Chapter from Sai Satcharitra
12. Other Episodes from Sai Satcharitra

I have completed narrating the live experiences of Tarkhad family with Lord Sai. One can now affirmatively say that the Tarkhad family was destined to come in contact with Lord Sai and this had taken place because of their "POORVAPUNYAI"(good deeds in their previous birth.) One peculiarity you must have noticed that they were never required to ask for anything from Baba. Although their first visit was to get relief on a biological ailment but even during this visit they were not required to declare the purpose of their visit. Baba could read their mind with pinpoint accuracy and shower his blessings on them in order to bring them closer to him. In the course of time their bond went on becoming stronger and stronger and now I sincerely pray that this should last till the end of this world.

© Online Shirdi Sai Baba Book Reading
I think it must be the year 1918 and Navaratri days because Baba took his mahasamadhi on Vijayadashmi day seven days later after granting Mukti to ailing Tiger. Baba had-become very old and he would walk with the help of two devotees one on each side of him. One evening after placing the Petromax lanterns in their required places my father had noticed that Baba was looking very tired. He asked Baba whether he could press his legs in order to give him some relief and comfort. Baba then said "As you have expressed the desire you may proceed and satisfy your self” My father then sat near his feet. After a little while Baba turned to him and said "Bhau this is our last meeting and we will not meet after this, As you know many kinds of people come to Shirdi and ask different kinds of grant like Sampatti (wealth), Santatti (children), Swastha (good health) etc from me. I do not displease any one and Lord on their behalf. My Lord responses positively to my prayers and grant them their requirements. You are one person I have come across who has not asked for anything. Possibly you are not married and Having no family hence not feeling any need for anything. But Bhau, since we will not meet anymore please ask for anything you desire otherwise I will always feel indebted to you for all services you have tendered to me so far." My father then said "Baba with your grace I have everything in life and I really do not need any materialistic thing. Only make sure your blessings are always there with me and under no circumstances you should fed away from my memory in future (HECHI DAAN DEGA DEVATUZHA VISAR NA VHAVA)". Then Baba said "Bhau I am in any case duty bound towards my devotees and I am asking you to ask something personally for yourself because each individual has his/her separate identity and needs some external help to successfully sail through his/her lifecycle. Please feel free and ask?" My father realized that it was an acid test for him, so he said" Baba now that you are emphasizing so much hence before I ask, you promise me that you will positively grant me my wish. 'Then Baba said "Bhau I have_granted the wishes of so many, hence you should not have a least doubt in me, you ask and I grant" Then my father said "Baba I need-Only one from you. Put me to any birth and I must be able to see your feet.""Baba was then silent for some time He broke His silence saying" "Bhau I am not able to grant this wish of yours." My father then said "Baba I was not asking for anything and you only forced me into this and I do not need anything other than this from you." Then Baba gave a smile and said "Bhau so many people come to Shirdi but very few are like you who have completely understood me. By your wish you want to bind me up for ever and I do not have such permission from my Lord to get bound like this with anyone. However you need not get disappointed. I promise you that in our next birth when we are ten years old we will be sitting together and eating in one Thali (plate)". "My father then said "Baba as you wish. In short Baba promised him to meet again in the next birth. My father was satisfied and he prostrated before him instantly. Baba lifted him and then dropped his hand in the pot of Udi next to him and offered him a handful and said "Bhau please preserve this with utmost care and use it very sparingly as it contains enormous power of even putting life back into any body." It was the time for evening Aarati. My father had a very contended feeling at that time. At the same time he was rather sad because Baba had declared that it was their last meeting. Next day Baba asked him to leave for Mumbai. On reaching home he informed his parents what all had taken place at Shirdi. They brought a small silver box and filled it with Udi, which they valued like Nectar given to them by God himself. I remember that if any one of us use to fall seriously ill then my father would take a small quantity and put it in the water and offer us to drink in order to get well. One thing is certain that during his lifetime none of his seven children passed away.

Dear Sai devotees my father had gone through many ups and downs in his life. He had his own bungalow, car and everything that one craves for in life. But at later stage he lost interest in materialistic world. I have never seen him falling sick. He took ill at the age of 70 years and he passed away about which I would narrate to you later.


© Online Shirdi Sai Baba Book Reading

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Other Episodes from Sai Satcharitra

You will also be interested to read previously posted chapter of the book 'Live Experiences of Tarkhad Family'
1. Experiences of Tarkhad Family with Sai Baba - Preface
2. Meeting with Shirdi Sai
3. Second Meeting with Shirdi Sai Baba
4. Sai Baba's Sandalwood Mandir
5. Sai the Saviour of Ganesh Murti
6. Frightful Sight of Goddess Mari Aai
7. Meeting with Lord Vithoba of Pandharpur
8. Facing Death in a Cloudburst in Shirdi
9. Resurrection of a dead body
10. Sai's Golden Test
11. 9TH Chapter from Sai Satcharitra

Dear readers, I once again feel that the episodes in this chapter are mainly for those people who have gone through Sai Satcharitra. Of course others will also find it undoubtedly interesting enough. There are many instances as depicted in Sai Satcharitra when my father was present (there) in Shirdi, and he had narrated them to us from time to time which I am going to put forward to you all. I am sure many devotees who were present there at that time must have experienced the same. However, I consider myself to be lucky, to hear them directly from my father, and as they were stored in my hard disc, I now blow it up before you, for your personal knowledge. I sincerely hope you will pardon me in case I falter anywhere.

"Granting Mukti (salvation) to Tiger"
This incident took place in the year 1918. My father used to distinctly recollect this because that happened to be his last visit to Shirdi when Baba was alive. After this incident I think a week later Baba took Maha Samadhi. On that day, as usual Baba's Darbar in Dwarkamai was on and suddenly outside Dwarkamai there was a big commotion. All were anxious to know what was

© Online Shirdi Sai Baba Book Readinghappening there. Four Darveshis (fakir) were carrying a full-grown Tiger who was tied up in chains; in a bullock cart. They had brought the bullock cart near the entrance of Dwarkamai and parked it. One of the Darveshis entered the Dwarkamai and pleaded to Mr. Madhavrao Deshpande (close devotee of Baba) stating that the Tiger is their source of income. They carry the Tiger from place to place and exhibit his show to people and the earnings are spent on their livelihood including that of the Tiger. But the Tiger had taken ill and while passing through Shirdi they had learnt that a great Saint SaiBaba is lived there. They also learnt that SaiBaba possessed miraculous powers and was able to cure living beings simply by his divine looks. They therefore, thought of showing the ailing Tiger to Baba provided the permission was granted to them. On checking with Baba, he granted the permission to bring the Tiger inside Dwarkamai. Darveshis took all precautions and brought the Tiger, who was walking slowly. He came close to the steps of the platform where Baba would normally be sitting. He looked at Baba and then put both his front paws forward and bent himself as though he was bowing and offering Namaskar to Baba and then suddenly gave a big roar. The sound of the roar was so loud and terrifying that it almost shook entire Dwarkamai. On giving that loud roar the Tiger fell flat on the ground and was motionless. The four Darveshi rushed forward to check the Tiger and they realized that it was dead. They declared to Baba that the Tiger was dead and now what should they do with its dead body. Baba advised them to bury the dead Tiger outside Lord Shiva's Temple near the statue of Nandi (bull). All the people of Shirdi had gathered to witness the burial ceremony of the dead Tiger. My father who had witnessed the entire episode live and in great detail felt that there was some kind of exchange between Baba and the Tiger and only after that the Tiger had passed away. My father waited for the right opportunity to enquire with him as to what exactly transpired between him and the Tiger. Baba then smiled and told my father "Hey Bhau that Tiger was in deep agony and he was requesting me to relieve him out of that agonizing pain as he could not bear it anymore. I felt pity on his miserable condition and hence I prayed to the Lord to grant him salvation. My Lord is very kind and he responded to my prayers and granted him salvation. That Tiger is free for ever from this cycle of birth and rebirth." My father was totally astonished to hear this explanation from Baba. My father told Baba that till then he had seen him showering blessings on human beings but for the first time he had witnessed him showering blessings on a wild animal like the Tiger. Of course this last visit to Shirdi was unprecedented for my father which I will narrate in the next chapter.

Control over Rain God

In Sai Satcharitra there is an incident, when there was an unprecedented rainfall in Shirdi. My father was also present over there. He was one of those lucky ones who had seen the battle between two superpowers. He use to always say that SaiBaba had acquired the ASTHASIDDHIS" (the eight superhuman powers) and he used to Practice them whenever he was called upon to overcome the crisis aced by his devotees. Of course the nature's superpower would aspect him and respond favorably to his SOS call because SaiBaba Himself was the Incarnation of God on this Planet Earth.

Those were the rainy days and since afternoon it was raining. As the evening approached the rains were getting heavier. Dark clouds had gathered in the sky. Gusty winds started blowing. There were clear signs of a thunderstorm approaching. The skies were getting lit with flashes of lightening followed by sounds of thunder. The storm was very active and entire Shirdi village was getting lashed with severe rains. Water was getting accumulated everywhere and all villagers along with their cattle started gathering in Dwarkamai as they had never come across such a severe downpour and thunderstorm. My father could not be an exception. He also came to Dwarkamai. He was reminded of the incident in the Bhagwat Gita when Lord Krishna had to lift the entire Govardhan Mountain and give shelter to all living beings and offer them reprieve from the unprecedented fury of the nature. That was the day in Shirdi when the natives needed someone like "Govardhangiri" who could only rescue them from that grave situation. Of course all were worried and waiting for Baba"s blessings to fall upon them. There were no signs of storm clearing and soon Baba's patience was over. He got up from his seat, picked up his "SATKA"(small baton) in his hand and came down to the gate of Dwarkamai. He stood there in the open, a severe lightening had flashed in the sky and Baba hit the ground with the Satka and roared loudly saying please go away from here (JATES Kl NAI? To be precise in Marathi). The intensity of that roar was so high in decibels that the entire place started trembling as though a tremor had hit Shirdi. Once again a severe stroke of lightening and Baba's hitting the ground with Satka asking for the rain God to move away from Shirdi. This happened thrice. It was a clear battle between the two Giants and soon the storm was coming to terms with Baba requests of reprieve. The lightening stopped, the rains receded and the winds slowed down. In about an hour's time everything was peaceful once again. The skies were clear and Baba asked everyone to return to their homes. My father resorted to his evening duty of lighting the Petromax Lamps. He was itching for the right moment so that he could ask Baba about the battle. Then came the moment and he asked Baba whether he is also in a position to rule over the nature. Baba~7eplied saying "Bhau whenever my devotees are in distress I pray to the Lord of the Universe to shower his mercy upon them. The Lord comes to my rescue extends his help to me." Of course my father could not forget the sign' when Baba was standing in the middle of the rains and roaring back to the Rain God to move away from Shirdi. Baba was looking like the Lord himself in a hostile mood.

Command over Fire Power

Once "DHUNI", the sacred fireplace started by Baba in Dwarkamai burning fiercely. Baba had already predicted the day of his departure from this world, hence I think it must be the day of "VIJAYADASHMI", popularly known as Dassera. It was evening time. Baba had stationed himself at his usual sitting place opposite the Dhuni in Dwarkamai. My father was also present there. Every evening he would come to Dwarkamai, sit there and observe the interesting happenings if any and proceed with his duty of lighting the Petromax Lamps. That day Baba suddenly got up, went near Dhuni, moved some wood pieces and started murmuring something while pacing up and down in Dwarkamai. This was very unusual and my father felt that something strange is likely to happen. Here I must state that even in those days there were many devotees of Baba who were anxious to know the religion of Baba by birth i.e. whether he was a Hindu or a Muslim. In any case he was in human form so he must have taken birth from a human body, in which case whether his parents were Hindu or Muslim was the question? Of course my father cannot be an exception to the rule.

Baba was slowly turning into an angry mood. He started abusing people who had assembled over there. Here the fire in the Dhuni was also raging higher and higher in the same proportion of Baba's angry mood. Entire Dwarkamai was lit up with the light from the firewood. By now Baba was charged with rage. He removed the cotton cloth tied to his head and threw it in the Dhuni. Suddenly the fire flames rose higher. Baba's long hairs became free. After a little while Baba removed his Kafani and threw the same in the Dhuni. The fire flames rose still higher so much so that people feared that the Dwarkamai would catch fire. Baba's anger was reaching its zenith. He stood in front of the People in that angry mood and in a fraction of a second he removed his Langot"(loin cloth) and threw the same in raging Dhuni. He had thus become "DIGAMBER"(nude) and he stood in front of the people in that form. He then shouted at them and told them to look at his body and decide for themselves and ascertain whether he was Hindu or a Muslim. What a way to give proof of oneself Now I am going to narrate to you what my father had seen at that time. My father used to say that Baba had acquired a very fiery posture. His eyeballs had turned red hot like burning coal and rays of light were emanating- from every pore of his body and his entire body was hidden behind that glow of spiritual ball of light. The light rays were so powerful that my father had to close his eyes. Needless to say that he could not make out the identity of Baba's religion. All present in Dwarkamai were stunned, Baba's shouts were continued. The flames from Dhuni were reaching very high and throwing enormous amount of light. Outside there was severe lightening and thunder. Then Mr. Bhagoji Shinde, one close devotee of Baba a leper (Baba used to allow him to press his legs) came forward and with great courage tied the new "LANGOT"(loin-cloth) around his waist. Then Baba cooled down to normalcy. He lifted his "SATKA" and came close to the Dhuni. He started hitting the flames with the Satka and was saying "Ugi...Ugi.means calm down, calm down. With each stroke of Satka the flames lowered in height and soon everything was back to normal. Then people got the courage to make Baba wear a new Kafani and his hairs (JATA) were tied with new piece of cloth. Although it was very late but devotees venerated Baba and carried put the evening Aarati as usual. Of course what impressed my father most was that Great Godly Body of Baba emanating light and his powers of having command over the fire. Baba-has selected Vijaya Dashami day with a purpose. He had given indication to his devotees that this will be the day when he will bid bodily good bye to this world. Later in the year 1918 on the Vijayadashmi day Baba took Samadhi.

Dear Sai devotee readers after knowing this I think we all should bury the hatchet of anxiety about Baba's religion and simply worship him with utmost devotion and 100 percent faith, for SAI means "SAAKSHAT ISHWAR"(GOD) who has no religion and is all pervading omnipotent and omnipresent.

Bathing of LORD SHIVA by Megha

One staunch Sai devotee who had permanently stationed himself at Shirdi was Mr. Megha. He was a very ardent follower of Lord Shiva and Baba knew about it. Baba had therefore gifted him the Lingam of Lord Shiva so that he could perform his daily pooja of his Lord. Baba also loved Megha intensely, which made him to attend his funeral procession in Shirdi. Baba joined the procession and went on showering flowers over his dead body right up to the cemetery and also shed tears like a normal mortal snowing his grief and love for his true devotee.

Of course Megha use to reckon Baba as his Lord Shankar and Baba had therefore allowed him to draw the Trishul on his forehead as was desired by Megha. On one Mahashivratri day Megha developed a fervent desire of giving a bath to Baba with Gangajal i.e. water from river Godavari. He was therefore nagging Baba to allow him to do so well in advance, as he knew that Baba would not permit him to do so easily. Finally after a lot of persuasion Baba agreed to take a bath from Megha.

On receiving the permission Megha was very happy. One day earlier Megha informed his acquaintances and invited them to witness the ceremony. My father was one of the invitees. Earlier night Megha left Shirdi with a Kalashi (metal vessel) for getting Gangajal from river Godavari that is around 11 km away from Shirdi. But for an ardent devotee like Megha, distance was no bar and he was back in Shirdi before noon with the Gangajal. After the noon Aarati Megha requested ' Baba to come for the bathing ceremony. Baba told him that he was only joking about taking the Gangajal bath, as such for a Fakir like him such acts are not permitted. Baba suggested to him to pour the sacred Gangajal over the Lingam of Lord Shiva in the Shiva Temple in Shirdi. Then Megha told him that he is bathing the Lingam daily and he reckons Baba as his living Lord Shiva and Mahashivratri being the most auspicious day for all Shivabhaktas Baba should not disappoint him. As Megha was very adamant Baba told him that he would allow him to pour the water only on one condition. Baba explained to him that Ganga emanates from Lord Shiva's head and hence Baba will bend forward and then Megha should pour the water over his head only. Megha though reluctant agreed to abide by this condition. Then Baba got up from his seat and they proceeded to Lendi Baug. There was a special stone on which Baba used to take bath, he sat on it, bended his head forward and signaled Megha to proceed. Megha started pouring water over Baba's head very slowly but he was not satisfied with that kind of bath, he decided to act as he had contemplated in his mind all these days. He suddenly emptied the bucket with the remaining water on all over Baba's body saying "Hara Hara Mahadev." He was very jubilant and started dancing with Joy, as he thought he had fulfilled his desire completely. But this did not last long. Soon he realized that although he had poured water all over Baba's body, only his head was wet and rest of his body including "is Kafani was as dry as ever. Megha was astonished to notice that and he could not believe. Then Baba told him "Hey you know Ganga flows out of Lord Shiva's head and does not touch rest of his body." My father was watching this fun along with other invitees. He realized that Baba wanted to impress upon Megha that his word is final and no one can dare to disobey him. Also Baba wanted to ascertain to Megha that he is his Living Lord Shiva. My father by then had fully understood Baba's various acts. According to him Baba over period of time had developed typical devotees around him. Through their mystical acts he use to impress upon people the presence of Lord and his mighty powers which people must learn to respect through their faithful devotion. To name some of them were Megha (Lord Shiva), Nanavali (Lord Hanuman), and Dasganu (Lord Vithoba). In fact Dasganu Maharaj in one of his Aarati says SHIRDI MAZHE PANDHARPUR SAIBABA RAMAVAR (My Pandharpur is Shirdi and my Vithoba is SaiBaba). My father use to say that sometimes in jovial mood Baba would say that "Hey Bhau I am none other than Goddess Laxmi and while sitting in this Dwarkamai I would never utter a lie." In his entire life span he called upon himself as messenger of God and never God himself. Of course whatever he would utter would take place unfailingly. My father use to recall Baba saying that "Hey Bhau, after I depart from this humanly body, you will see that people will flock to Shirdi like Ants to sugar. Today you visit Shirdi any day of the year you will get the proof of Baba's statement made years ago.


© Online Shirdi Sai Baba Book Reading

Monday, December 22, 2008

9TH Chapter from Sai Satcharitra

Chapters already posted from the book 'Live Experiences of Tarkhad Family'
1. Experiences of Tarkhad Family with Sai Baba - Preface
2. Meeting with Shirdi Sai
3. Second Meeting with Shirdi Sai Baba
4. Sai Baba's Sandalwood Mandir
5. Sai the Saviour of Ganesh Murti
6. Frightful Sight of Goddess Mari Aai
7. Meeting with Lord Vithoba of Pandharpur
8. Facing Death in a Cloudburst in Shirdi
9. Resurrection of a dead body
10. Sai's Golden Test

I have opened up in front of you the treasure trove of the experiences of Tarkhad family and I am sure after reading through the same your faith in Baba must have doubled up. Now we will move towards the experiences as given in Sai Satcharitra.

I would like to draw your attention to chapter No. 9 from Sai Satcharitra. Of course here I presume that our readers are knowledgeable about this holy book and they have read the same at least once. If one has not done so then my humble request is please do so, which describes in great detail the life of Shirdi Sai Baba and an account of various Leela's he depicted to his devotees during his life span in Shirdi. The 9th chapter of this holy book is dedicated mostly to Tarkhad family i.e. my grandmother my grandfather Ramchandra Atmaram Tarkhad alias Babasaheb Tarkhad and my father Jyotindra Ramchandra Tarkhad. As described earlier the Tarkhad family was staunch Prarthanasamajist and they did not believe in Murti Pooja. For that matter they did not believe in God. However their destiny led them to come in contact with Shirdi SaiBaba and then it was a great transformation. As such Sai Baba's famous Aarati states that he is capable of converting an atheist into firm believer in God (NASTIKANAHI TU LAVISHI NIJABHAJANI). In case of Tarkhad Family this happened practically:

The writer of Sai Satcharitra, Late Shri Annasaheb Dabholkar states in this 9th chapter that Babasaheb Tarkhad was very lucky to have a son like my father who was a good worshipper. My father used to get up at 4 a m in the morning and after taking bath he would perform Baba's Aarati by applying sandalwood paste to Baba's Photo In their Mandir at home. He use to light a silver lamp (NIRANJAN) in which the one paisa coin given by Baba was placed. Also there was a regular offering of sugar candy as prasad, which they all would eat during their lunch. After the Pooja father and son would leave for their textile Mill at Byculla. With Baba's grace in those days my grandfather was earning Rs.5000/- and my father Rs.2000/- as salaries per month. Once my grandfather developed an urge to send cotton bails to Baba so that he can make Kaffanis out of it for his personal use. He suggested to Jyotindra to go to Shirdi along with his mother and deliver the offerings to Baba. But Jyotindra was rather reluctant because who will perform the pooja at home? Then my grandfather took upon himself and gave him the assurance that he will carry out the ritual as practiced by Jyotindra and there will be no let up on that count. With that assurance my father along with his mother left for Shirdi. Next two days passed properly but on the third day my grandfather forgot to keep sugar candy during the pooja time. He realized this only in the afternoon when there was no prasad in his plate. He immediately got up and wrote a letter to Jyotindra in Shirdi requesting him to seek pardon from Baba for his grave mistake.

There in Shirdi at the same time one interesting thing happened. After the afternoon Aarati in Dwarkamai when my grandmother and my father went to Baba to seek his blessings Baba told my grandmother " Oh mother! I am very hungry today. As usual I went to Bandra, and I found the door was locked but no one can stop me as I entered from the narrow gap in the door but was totally disappointed as I could not find anything for lunch & I had to return on an empty Stomach." My grand mother could not understand what Baba was saying but my father instantly realized that his father must have forgotten to offer prasad to Baba during Morning Pooja time. He requested Baba to pardon his father for the grave mistake and asked for his permission to leave for Mumbai instantly. Baba did not permit and said to stay for some more days. My father was any way restless and he wrote a letter to his father stating the details of what Baba had uttered. The two letters crossed each other and on receiving them and going through them both father and son were in tears. They realized the depth of Baba's love for them .On the other hand Baba reminded them that he is very much present in that Photo frame and he accepts their daily offerings unfailingly.

Once while they were in Shirdi when my grandmother was about to take her lunch, a dog came there and started wagging its tail. My grandmother offered him a piece of Chapati, which the dog ate with relish and moved away from there. Little later a pig laden with muck all over the body came there. Normally looking at that ugly creature one would not be able to gulp the food down once throat but my grandmother was a very kind hearted and God fearing person. She offered the piece of Chapati to that ugly pig also. The pig ate that piece and went away. Then later that day when they visited Dwarkamai and they went closer to Baba he said to her "Oh mother, today you have fed me with your own hands and the feeding was so sumptuous that I am still continuing to belch. " My grandmother was surprised hearing that. She told Baba that "Baba you are mistaken I have never given you food in Shirdi, as such I do not cook any food over here. Infact I myself eat the food in one of the restaurants over here run by Mr. Saguna and pay for it." Then Baba told her "Oh mother this afternoon when you were taking your lunch did you not offer food to a dog followed by an ugly looking pig? That food has reached me." Then my grandmother told him "Baba this means you take the tests of your devotees by entering in the form of creatures." Baba then told her "Oh mother, please continue to be kind to these creatures and God will continue to bless you. God will see to it that there is never dearth of food in your house."

By now Tarkhad family had developed lot of acquaintances with other Sai Devotees and some of them like Mr. Dabholkar, Mr. Purandare and Mr. Tendulkar who were staying at a closer distance from their place of residence at Bandra. They use to meet each other and then share their sweet experiences with Baba. Whenever they would plan to visit Shirdi they use to inform each other and if anyone wanted to send something to Baba then they would act as a courier for the devotee. Of course the intention behind was expressing pure devotion and love towards Baba. Once Mr. Purandare along with family were proceeding to Shirdi and my grandmother offered two Big Black Brinjals to Mrs. Purandare and requested her to make 'Bhareet' out of one Brinjal and 'Kacharya' (Fried Brinjal Slices) out of the other Brinjal and offer the same for His lunch. Mrs. Purandare on the first day prepared the 'Bhareet' and along with her other preparation offered the same in the plate for Baba's lunch. Baba ate the 'Bhareet' and expressed his desire to have 'Fried Brinjal slices'. Ms. Radhakrishnamai (devotee native) of Shirdi who use to look after the lunch arrangements of Baba was in a fix. She enquired with the ladies and learnt that Mrs. Purandare brought the Brinjal preparation. That was anyway not the season of Brinjals and hence the difficulty to obtain one in Shirdi. So Ms. Radhakrishnamai ran to Mrs. Purandare and enquired about the availability of Brinjals. She said that she had one and had planned to offer the "Fried Brinjal Slices" the next day. Then Ms Radhakrishnamai took away the Brinjal and hurriedly fried the slices for Baba as he was bent upon completing his lunch only after having them. Now this was purely an act of expressing the intense love towards His devotee and also confirming to the devotee in return the receipt of devotion from him/her. When Mrs. Purandare on returning to Bandra informed my grandmother about this incident she was completely overwhelmed and thanked Baba from the bottom of her heart.

In the same way one evening Mr. Govindji (son of Mr. Balakram) visited Tarkhad's residence as he was proceeding to Shirdi that night. He was to perform the rites of the immersion of ashes of his late father at Nashik and then proceed to Shirdi. As he was in a dire hurry and my grandmother could not provide anything sizeable to send to Baba she managed to locate one 'Pedha' which was kept in the Prasad Pot in front of Baba's portrait in the 'Sandalwood Mandir'. She told him to offer the same although she was not internally happy because the 'Pedha' had already been offered as Prasad earlier. Besides Mr. Govindji was combining his visit for the immersion of ashes followed by the pilgrimage to Shirdi. Of course my grandmother kept aside all these illogical thoughts for her intentions bore divine love as was expressed by Shabari to Lord Rama when she had offered Him the tasted fruit of 'Bora'

When Govindaji reached Dwarkamai after completing all his other rituals he had completely forgotten about the Pedha. Baba asked him whether he had brought anything for him. Govindji replied in negative. Then Baba reminded him stating that someone had given him something to offer to him. Govindji was stone faced and was negative once again. Baba was now angry and literally shouted at him saying" Hay while leaving Mumbai my mother had given you something for me and where is it?" Now Govindji realized, he ran to his place of stay and brought the Pedha and gave it to Baba. The Pedha was instantly consumed by Baba and he told Govindji to inform the mother that it tested very sweet.

Dear Sai devotee readers such instances of divine love have been very effectively depicted by Late Shri Annasaheb Dabholkar in the 9th chapter of Sai Satcharitra. My father when used to narrate this to us tears used to flow out through his eyes. I think which devotee not feel that way when he would get a return receipt from the Lord in such fashion. I for one feel "KAHAN GAVE WOH LOG?".(HATS TO THOSE PEOPLE) AND WHERE ARE THOSE DEVOTEES AND WHERE IS THAT KIND OF DEVOTION TO-DAY? BUT SAI BABA'S LOVE FOR HIS DEVOTEES IS OMNIPRESENT.


© Online Shirdi Sai Baba Book Reading

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Sai's Golden Test

Chapters already post from the book 'Live Experiences of Tarkhad Family'
1. Experiences of Tarkhad Family with Sai Baba - Preface
2. Meeting with Shirdi Sai
3. Second Meeting with Shirdi Sai Baba
4. Sai Baba's Sandalwood Mandir
5. Sai the Saviour of Ganesh Murti
6. Frightful Sight of Goddess Mari Aai
7. Meeting with Lord Vithoba of Pandharpur
8. Facing Death in a Cloudburst in Shirdi
9. Resurrection of a dead body

Dear Sai devotee readers I am inclined to think that you all must have liked the experiences I have narrated so far. Our normal life cycle is such that we first put on the mantle of family hood and then come across all the sweet/bitter experiences of life. On going through them we get attracted towards spiritualism for final peace of mind. But this cycle was exactly reversed in case of my father. He first went through all holy experiences and then had to grind the axe of tough family life. One thing was clear that because of his association with Sai Baba he had possibly learnt the art of facing any eventuality. I also believe that the path of Bhakti is such that when one starts practicing it, he gets better equipped to face any kind of fear in life.

By now my father had visited Shirdi ample number of times and was sufficiently rich with divine experiences to his credit. The time had come that he faces some twisting moments. Those were the winter days when days are shorter and the nights are longer. One such day when it was dusk © Online Shirdi Sai Baba Book Readingand twinkling stars could be seen in the sky, Baba told my father to accompany him .It was an out of the blue invitation because Baba would never leave Dwarkamai at that time of the day. He walked towards "Lendi Baug" and then passing through it they came to the bank of the rivulet as described in the earlier chapter. By then it was quite dark and the moon had risen in the sky. Then Baba told my father that he is going to show him some fun and that is the reason he has brought him to that place. My father was very pleased because he was anyway getting some special personal attention. Then they sat down and Baba started moving the soft soil with his own hand. He then asked my father to look in the soil whether he is able to see anything. My father saw and replied in the negative. Baba then repeated the act and my father looked at the place for the second time and said that he can only see the soil. Then Baba repeated the act for the third time and this time he hit the back of my father's head with his hand and told him to look carefully. When my father looked at the place he saw some shining metal over there and it was glittering even more because of the moonlight. Baba enquired with my father whether he is seeing anything. My father then replied that it is some metallic object and it is shining. Then Baba told him "Bhau that metal . nothing but Gold and you can take as much as you want." Then my father told him that "Baba I do not want this. With your blessings we have everything and I do not come to Shirdi with the intention of getting such materialistic returns from you." Then Baba cautioned him stating that "Bhau this is Goddess Laxmi, She is pleased with you and once you decline her boon she will never ever come back to you, atleast not in this birth. So please rethink". Then my father told him that "Baba you are putting me to some acid test and I will not fall prey to this 'Maya' and once your blessings are there with me then I can live a peacefully comfortable life without this 'Maya'. Then Baba moved the mud back in its place and then both returned to Dwarkamai.

One interesting thing happened at that time. One of the natives of Shirdi had seen what was happening at the bank of the rivulet. He guessed that SaiBaba had shown some buried treasure to my father over there. He decided to visit that place late at night and dig the same and unearth the treasure. Accordingly he got up at midnight to venture for the treasure hunt. But alas! No sooner had he laid his hands to pick up the crow bar than a scorpion stung him on his fingers and he was uncomfortable throughout the night. By morning the pain was unbearable so wisely he decided to go to Saibaba and pleased guilty. He had realized that he cannot disclose his last nights plan of treasure hunt to any one other than Baba. When he entered Dwarkamai he was in severe pain. My father was present there. He saw the native was pleading to Baba with guilt and was saying that he will never ever commit such a sin again but was requesting Baba to relieve him from the agonizing pain due to the scorpion sting. Baba then told him that the one who was destined to have the treasure declined to take it, which does not mean that any other person can get it. In this world the Lord has made a rule that each one will get according to his own 'Karma' and if one tries to break this rule then he is bound to get punished from the Lord. My father understood the conversation. Baba then applied his sacred 'Udi' to the scorpion-stung finger of that native and told him not to misbehave in future. He blessed him that Lord will relieve him out of this agonizing pain.

So such was the 'Golden Test' my father was put through to at Shirdi and I think he was successful in the same because he did not fall a Prey to 'Maya'. But one thing was certain that in his future career he could not accumulate wealth. Goddess Laxmi had refrained from going to him and his financial status was so but we shall not go into that history.


© Online Shirdi Sai Baba Book Reading

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Resurrection of a dead body

You may also like to read other chapters from the book 'Live Experiences of Tarkhad Family'
1. Experiences of Tarkhad Family with Sai Baba - Preface
2. Meeting with Shirdi Sai
3. Second Meeting with Shirdi Sai Baba
4. Sai Baba's Sandalwood Mandir
5. Sai the Saviour of Ganesh Murti
6. Frightful Sight of Goddess Mari Aai
7. Meeting with Lord Vithoba of Pandharpur
8. Facing Death in a Cloudburst in Shirdi

I am very certain that many of SaiBaba's devotees must have come across such spiritual experiences and as a result Baba's name & fame spread all over the continents. I came across one Ms. Bhakuni who is attached to Shri Sai Mandir at Chattarpur near New Delhi. She is doing © Online Shirdi Sai Baba Book Readingher Ph D in literature and the subject she has selected is Sai Baba. She has done a lot of research work on Baba. Their trust is publishing a quarterly magazine in Hindi and it is quite educative. Offcourse during Baba's lifetime his message was spread over Mumbai and Maharashtra by mainly none other than Dasganu Maharaj. Baba used to address him as "Ganya". Dasganu Maharaj use to perform "Kirtans" through which he used to impress upon people the Leela's of Baba and also use to spread his message to the masses.

Once during Dasganu's stay in Shirdi he was called upon to give performance in a village near Shirdi. Dasganu Maharaj used to keep Baba's Photo on a stool and use to garland the same before he began his Kirtan. Ofcourse which when conducted near around Shirdi he use to take Baba's Blessings before proceeding. One afternoon he came to Dwarkamai and informed Baba that in the evening he will proceed to perform the Kirtan in a nearby village and hence he needed Baba's blessings. Baba told him that he is free to go but requested him to take Bhau (my father) along with him.
Dasganu said that he has no objection in taking along my father but he would not like to deprive him of his ritual of lighting lamps in Dwakamai in the evening. Hearing this Baba said that he need not worry about Dwakamai Lamps as somebody else would attend to that task, but insisted that Dasganu should take Bhau along with him. Both Dasganu and my father (who was present there) understood that this is rather Baba's order. Then as per the agreed time they left in the evening for that village which was around 7 to 8 km away. In those days there was no transportation facility like today so they had to go by walking. By the time they reached the village the sun had already set they unfolded the mats on the ground, kept the stool with Baba's photograph on it and garlanded the same. They lighted the Petromax lamps & hung at Four Comers. Villagers had gathered and Dasganu Maharaj began his Kirtan. After about an hour when night had already set in they encountered trouble.
Around 7 to 8 people who were very dark complexioned possible from Bhill tribe came over there. They were carrying a dead body over their shoulders and were on the way to cemetery to perform the last rights. Their leader straight came to Dasganu Maharaj ant; threatened him. He inquired about the Photograph on the stool Dasganu explained politely stating that the photograph is of SaiBaba: who is stationed at Shirdi and he worships him as his Guru as well as his Deity. He went on to state that SaiBaba gives medicines to poor people and relieves them from their agony. He is performing the Kirtan, which will bring happiness to the villagers. Then that Bhill leader told his people to keep the bier down and he addressed to Dasganu stating that if his Deity is mighty, then it should be possible for the Deity to bring back life into that dead body. He challenged him to do so otherwise he would kill him and his troupe. Dasganu was very scared and he approached my father seeking for his advice.

My father had realized that this could be probably Baba's creation and they should plead to him only and invoke his mercy to come to their rescue. He suggested to Dasganu to perform his famous Kirtan "SAI RAHAM NAZAR KARNA BACHHON KA PALAN KARANA" and leave it to Sai to decide the rest. Then Dasganu began his popular Kirtan and he got so much engrossed in it that my father had never seen him in that state ever before. He was literally dancing and all the villagers were positively responding to him. My father was rather keeping a watch on that dead body. About an hour must have passed and something unprecedented happened. The life had returned to the dead body. It broke open all the strings tied around him and sat on the bier and started clapping and joined the Kirtan along with the rest. My father was overjoyed to see that He got up from his place and went to Dasganu who was no more himself because he was in a trance. My father caught him with his both hands and told him to stop the Kirtan Baba had saved them from fear of loosing their own lives. The Kirtan stopped. Those Bhills got up. They helped that dead body (which was no more dead then) to stand on its own feet. They told him to bow to Dasganu and then made all detailed inquiry about Baba and promised to visit Shirdi for his Darshan.

Next day when Dasganu and my father went to Dwarkamai Baba . Hey Ganya good that my Bhau was there with you yesterday, otherwise who would have saved you from the wrath of the Bhills?" and hearing this both of them told Baba that it was all his creation and they are totally dependant on him in situations like that and he should continue to shower his mercy and blessings upon them.

Dear readers here you may have all kinds of doubts. I can only plead you to please believe this. May be that dead body was not actually dead but was in coma. What is important is Baba knew in advance what is going to happen during the Kirtan or may be it was all his creation to imbibe confidence in Dasganu. Baba knows best how to pull people towards him and this will continue to happen. We must keep our strong faith in him.


© Online Shirdi Sai Baba Book Reading

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Facing Death in a Cloudburst in Shirdi

Other chapters from the book 'Live Experiences of Tarkhad Family'
1. Experiences of Tarkhad Family with Sai Baba - Preface
2. Meeting with Shirdi Sai
3. Second Meeting with Shirdi Sai Baba
4. Sai Baba's Sandalwood Mandir
5. Sai the Saviour of Ganesh Murti
6. Frightful Sight of Goddess Mari Aai
7. Meeting with Lord Vithoba of Pandharpur

Dear Sai Devotee readers, I presume that you must have paid a visit to Shirdi at least once. The present Shirdi and the Shirdi of yester years when my father used to visit, there is a vast difference. During that time when you enter Shirdi from Kopergaon end there was a rivulet, which you were required to cross to enter Shirdi village. Most of the times of the year the rivulet was dried up, only during monsoon season one would find it actively flowing. Currently one would find a small bridge over it on the main road. In those days villagers use to perform their morning duties on the banks of this rivulet. As such there were lot of shrubs and the place was appropriate before the sunrise, as there was hardly any traffic on the road.

Those were the rainy days when my father was in Shirdi. He was in the habit of getting up early and after performing morning duties he would attend the Kakad Aarati. On that eventful day he got up early and proceeded to the bank of the rivulet to perform his morning duties. It was drizzling so he carried an umbrella and torch with him. During his course of morning duty he heard someone shouting from the other bank of the rivulet. Initially he ignored the shouts. He tried to locate the person but due to darkness he could not see anyone. Soon he realized that the person was shouting and asking to runaway from the bank. He was shouting in Marathi and saying that" LONDHA ALARE ALA PALA." My father did not understand the meaning of LONDHA. (A torrent) as such his education was in English medium and it was difficult for him to understand the colloquial Marathi. However he could sense that the person was warning everybody to run away from the place. He hurriedly finished his morning duty and stood up and lighted the torch to find out what was going around. Soon he realized that a huge column of black colored water 15 to 20 feet in height was coming towards him. There was a cloudburst, which had taken place during the night at a far away place resulting into sudden floods in the rivulet. He realized that his end was near and he shouted saying "BABA MELO MALA WACHAVA". (Baba I am dying and please save me.) He closed his eyes and just stood still in that place, all the time chanting Baba's name. After some time he realized that he had not been swept away and he was still alive. He opened his eyes and what he saw was believable. The column of water was divided into two parts and Pushing past him without touching him. He was standing still in that gushing water. He was scared to death and the entire time chanting Baba's name (NAMASMARAN). After some time the water level receded and when it was down to knee level the water touched his body Now he was in knee deep water. He could see around him branches of trees, shrubs, catties etc were passing through that floodwaters. He thanked Baba there and then as he realized that only Baba could have Saved him from that sure death situation. He then .slowly walked back through those knee-deep waters. He came to their place of stay and took bath. Needless to mention that he had missed Kakad Aarati that morning. He informed his mother what he had undergone that morning. She advised him that as Baba had pulled him out of the jaws of death, he should immediately go and thank him for saving his life. He immediately paced up to Dwarkamai and as he was climbing the steps with pooja material in his hand Baba talked to him in raised voice, "Hey Bhau today early morning why were you shouting for my help and are you afraid of death?" My father fell at his feet and told Baba that he knows everything and an ordinary man like him is bound to get scared with the sight of sure death in front of him. Baba then lifted him by holding him from his shoulders and said " Hey Bhau get up. I bring you to Shirdi not for dying. Please remember you will not die like this so easily, as you have to perform lot of constructive work in future."

Dear Sai devotee readers, I know it is difficult for common people like us to comprehend such experience. Then came a thought-provoking event in my life, which I will describe it to you now.

It was the month of June 1962 if I remember correctly. There was a great movie running at New Talkies (today's Globus Theatre) in Bandra. The name of the movie was "TEN COMMANDMENTS." This film was produced by Cecille Be Demille, one of the most renowned producers of Hollywood. The movie had broken all previous records in Regal Theatre at Colaba and the New Talkies at Bandra was renovated with 70 MM screen and stereophonic sound system. I saw the film and realized that the miracles shown in the film matched with the miracles seen by my father during his association with SaiBaba of Shirdi. After lot of persuasion I convinced my father to come with me to see the movie. May be after a long span of 30 to 35 years he was to enter a theatre to watch a film. He saw the scenes, the divine light. Moses comes across when he visits the mountain and when Moses take all his Jew people leaving the terrain of Egypt and come on the shores of Red Sea and prays to the Lord and the Sea water divides into two parts giving them way to escape from the wrath of king Faroha. My father was delighted to see that picturisation and tears of joy welled and were flowing through his eyes. When we came out of the theatre he confirmed to me that the Shirdi Sai Baba possessed the same type of supernatural powers and he very much resembled the character of Moses as shown in the film Ten Commandments. He went on to add saying "Viren at least now you have some reason to believe what unprecedented experiences I have gone through in association with SaiBaba of Shirdi."


© Online Shirdi Sai Baba Book Reading

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Meeting with Lord Vithoba of Pandharpur

Previously posted chapters:
1. Experiences of Tarkhad Family with Sai Baba - Preface
2. Meeting with Shirdi Sai
3. Second Meeting with Shirdi Sai Baba
4. Sai Baba's Sandalwood Mandir
5. Sai the Saviour of Ganesh Murti
6. Frightful Sight of Goddess Mari Aai

Dear Sai devotee readers I request you to please forgive me as I do not have the chronological sequence of events as were experienced by my father. I am narrating to you as they come to my mind. My father used to describe them to us whenever he used to come into that spiritual mood and hence chronological order is not possible for me to state.

As informed earlier, the Tarkhad family started worshiping SaiBaba on daily basis and on Thursday evening they used to perform the Aarati collectively at their residence. My grandmother was completely at peace of mind and she was very happy that her headache had disappeared forever. She was now getting attracted more towards spiritualism. She started © Online Shirdi Sai Baba Book Readingreading spiritual books regularly. Once she expressed her desire to my father of going on a pilgrimage to Holy Pandharpur and to take Darshan of Lord Vithoba. She went on to inform him that, the holy books suggest that before one parts with this world, one should visit Pandharpur. My father advised her to check with Baba and seek his clearance.

Accordingly, during their next visit to Shirdi, she asked Baba to permit her to go to Pandharpur. Baba told her" Oh Mother for us Shirdi is our everything and there is no need” She was rather disappointed . She told Baba that Pilgrims visit Pandharpur, as they firmly believe that Lord Vithoba is stationed there and once you have his Darshan then your path to attain Moksha (salvation) is clear. She expressed to him that she has developed very strong urge to visit and perform his pooja at least once in her lifetime. Baba knowing her desire to be genuine then declared "Oh Mother do not worry you will visit Pandharpur and fulfill your desire." On returning home they informed Babasaheb Tarkhad about that and after proper planning my father and my Grandmother proceeded to Pandharpur. Readers will appreciate a point that as Mecca is to Muslims, Bethlehem to Catholics so is Pandharpur to Maharashtrians.

On reaching there my father made all the necessary arrangements.

After taking bath and breakfast when the morning rush hours were over they walked up to the Vithoba Mandir along with pooja material. On entering the sanctum sanctorum they seeked the permission to perform pooja from the priest of the Mandir. My grandmother proceeded in her own way and almost completed the pooja. Now was the time to adorn the Vithoba Murti with the garland and there was a dilemma. My grandma would want to garland with her own hands but the priest would not allow doing so, as no one is permitted to climb the platform where the Murti is situated. My grandma told my father that her pooja would remain incomplete if she were unable to garland the Murti with her own hands. My father advised her to pray to Baba and seek his help as he had granted her permission to visit Pandharpur. She closed her eyes and raised both the hands holding the garland, and requested Lord Vithoba to accept her pooja. Then came a miracle. Lo and Behold! The Murti of Lord Vithoba slided down the platform. My father instantly shook my grandmother Bodily. He told her to open her eyes and see for herself that the Lord had responded to her prayers and now she can adorn him with her garland. She instantly placed the garland o n Vithoba's neck and the Lord was back to its original place. Both mother and son prostrated in front of Lord Vithoba.

On seeing this, the priest was completely astonished and flabbergasted. He jumped down from the platform and held the feet of my grandmother and father and declared that they are the Vithoba and Rakhumai and he would not allow them to go away. He pleaded pardon for his arrogant behavior. My father consoled him and told him not to have any wrong ideas about their identity. He told him that they are devotees of Shirdi SaiBaba and on getting consent from him they are visiting Pandharpur. He further told him to have strong faith in Lord Vithoba who is Jagrut (wakeful) over there and is no more a stone God. He advised him to perform his pooja from the bottom of his heart and seek his blessings in return. He then requested the priest to give them prasad so that they could leave the Mandir. They purchased Brass Idols of Vithoba -Rakhumai and placed it in their Sandalwood Mandir to offer daily worship.

This experience was like receiving heavenly pleasure for both of them. Though they use to offer prayers to God very sincerely they never ever imagined that Lord Vithoba will greet them in that fashion. After this visit when they visited Shirdi next, Baba asked my Grandmother (mother) could you meet Vithoba?" My grandmother replied "Baba this is all your making. I am now read to part with this world as I consider my life is complete now." She profusely thanked him.

Dear Sai devotee readers my father used to say that God always exists in any stone Murti which you worship. I for one strongly feel that all those divine experience they encountered purely because of their solemn and good deeds of the past and undoubtedly they were under the umbrella of Grace of Sai"s blessings all along which made this possible.


© Online Shirdi Sai Baba Book Reading

Monday, December 15, 2008

Frightful Sight of Goddess Mari Aai

Before proceeding to read further, please read the previous chapters
1. Experiences of Tarkhad Family with Sai Baba - Preface
2. Meeting with Shirdi Sai
3. Second Meeting with Shirdi Sai Baba
4. Sai Baba's Sandalwood Mandir
5. Sai the Saviour of Ganesh Murti

Dear Sai devotee readers, we are passing through the 21st Century and hence I have a humble request to make to all of you to believe in this experience of Jyotindra which I will be narrating to you shortly. Those who have read Shri Sai Satcharitra would know that once there was an epidemic of Cholera in Shirdi. Village people believed that you have to pray to Goddess 'MariAai' when such an epidemic is widespread, inorder to keep the deaths under control. Off course in those days the medical aids were not forthcoming and advanced like today and epidemics were a common phenomenon in Indian villages. Also the communication system was not that developed and as a result of which when my father reached Shirdi he was not aware that there was Cholera epidemic in Shirdi. Offcourse he had by then developed great faith in Baba and he knew that Baba will take care of him and as such if it is too dangerous to stay then Baba would instantly direct him to return to Mumbai. He therefore was unafraid and performed his rituals as usual. In the next two to three days he experienced that the death toll was on the increase and Cholera was increasing into menacing proportion in the villages around Shirdi. He was internally frightened. One evening, as per his ritual, he lighted the Petromax lamps and was placing them in Dwarkamai. No sooner had he climbed the steps where Baba used to normally sit in front of the Dhuni than Baba got angry on him. He started abusing him. This was a new experience for Jyotindra. Baba's anger was reaching high peak. In rage he told my father that he will cut him into seven pieces and burry him in the Masjid. Jyotindra was very scared. He fell at Baba's feet and started pleading to be pardoned because he thought he might have inadvertently made some mistake, which aroused anger in Baba. Then in the same mood Baba ordered him to sit © Online Shirdi Sai Baba Book Readingthere and press his legs. My father instantly obeyed his orders and was seated at his feet pressing his legs. He noticed that Baba was still murmuring something and continued to be in the angry mood he was in. After a little while Jyotindra started perspiring because he was seeing in front of him the Goddess Kali in that terrifying pose. Her menacing posture and blood soaked tongue. On seeing this sight my father lost his senses completely. Automatically he held on to Baba's legs with all his might and strength in his body. He was trying to convey to Baba to save him from this, but the fright was so deep that words could not come out He became speechless. His face was only turning in two directions from Baba to Kali and vice-versa. He was seeing Baba uttering something but was unable to hear and comprehend. In no time he felt unconscious. When he woke up he realized that Baba was shaking him and asking him to wake up. He regained his consciousness and was drenched in sweat. Baba was telling him that "Hey Bhau I told you to press my legs but you are holding them so tight that your nails are hurting me." My father was very thirsty and he asked for some water. Baba gave him some water from the earthen pot (Kolamba) which used to be there in Dwarkamai. My father drank the water and he reached the NTP (Normal Temperature and Pressure) condition. He instantly told Baba not to show him such dreadful sights because he did not have the strength to withstand them. He told him that for the next four days he may not be able to gulp food and he would have to rethink whether he should come to Shirdi or not. Then Baba asked him "Hey Bhau please tell me what exactly did you see?" Then my father narrated the whole incident which was still a fresh in his memory. He asked Baba that "You were murmuring something with that dreadful person but I could not hear anything as I fell unconscious." Baba replied "Hey Bhau that dreadful person you are referring to was none Aai.'' She was asking for your soul and I was declining. She was refusing to go away, then I told her you may take five more people but I will not part with my Bhau. Finally she gave up and left Dwarkamai." Baba went on to say "Bhau please remember I do not bring you to Shirdi to die and when you are at my feet nobody can snatch you away from me." For my father it was like he had taken rebirth. He fell at Baba's feet and once again pleaded not to show such dreadful sights as it is beyond his ability to withstand. Whenever my father used to narrate this incident he used to say that very remembrance of that sight would give him a sleepless night.

Dear Sai devotee readers after going through this episode I am sure many of you may have some doubts and would like to seek some clarification but as said in the beginning please believe it. Shirdi SaiBaba was nothing but Lord Incarnation and therefore he possessed those supernatural powers which when required he utilized to save 's devotee. I am sure there must be ample number of people who must have undergone such life saving experiences. Baba use to declare that it is his ardent duty to protect his devotee from evil effect. " He told my father "Bhau after my bodily departure from Shirdi people will come like ants to Shirdi and please remember I do not utter lies while speaking from this Dwarkamai"

Dear readers in this 21st century we all are seeing and experiencing what has transpired in Shirdi and I am sure this will go on till the end of this world.


© Online Shirdi Sai Baba Book Reading

Friday, December 12, 2008

Sai the Saviour of Ganesh Murti

Chapters posted so far
1. Experiences of Tarkhad Family with Sai Baba - Preface
2. Meeting with Shirdi Sai
3. Second Meeting with Shirdi Sai Baba
4. Sai Baba's Sandalwood Mandir

In the Sandalwood Mandir there is also one small marble Murti of Lord Ganesh. This is a unique Murti as the Lord's Trunk is turned towards his right. The Murti is placed on a silver shrine. Separately made for the same. The story of the Ganesh Murti is very interesting and therefore I feel like stating the same for you all readers. Of course the existence of the Ganesh Murti is for such a long time, the credit goes to Shirdi SaiBaba, which I will now narrate to you all.

© Online Shirdi Sai Baba Book ReadingMy grandfather use to pay visit to an antique shop near Regal Theatre in Mumbai. On one such visit, while going round the shop he heard an English gentleman bargaining with the shopkeeper. My grandfather was rather curious that an English gentleman was bargaining so he took an active interest in the same. The bargain was for a beautiful marble Murti of Lord Ganesh. It was 9 inch tall sitting in a lotus flower and painted very appropriately in various colors. The shopkeeper was asking for Rs.15/-and was giving the justification that it is from Somnath Temple and very antique hence the price tags. The English gentleman had started the offer with Rs.5/- and then went on to Rs.8/-. My grandfather now got attracted towards that deal, He inquired with the Englishman, out of sheer curiosity as to what he intend to do with the Murti. The Englishman replied that the beautiful marble stone he would use as a paperweight on his desk. On hearing that my grandfather became very angry. He took out Rs.100/-note from his wallet and gave it to the shopkeeper. He told him to take Rs80/- (i.e. ten times the offer of the Englishman) and pack the Murti for him. He declared that he would not allow his God to be used as paperweight to anyone. On further inquiry with the shopkeeper he learnt that the Murti was from the main entrance gate of the Somnath Temple and hence very antique. On reaching home he declared that he would wish to place the Murti in the Sandalwood Mandir so that along with Sai pooja it will also get worshiped which in any case is much better than being used Paperweight. The family members agreed with his suggestion. On opening the pack my grandmother realized that the Murti had a trunk turned on the right side and this type of Lord Ganesh (Siddhwnayaka) are generally not kept in the house for pooja as it calls for observance of very strict discipline in all household activities. They then consulted the priest who advised that they can worship the Murti on condition that every Ganesh Chaturthy day they will repaint the same and they can not perform the immersion of the same. Tarkhads were happy for such solution and on the following Ganesh Chaturthy day they brought a Silver Shrine for the Murti and consecrated the same ceremoniously in the Sandalwood Mandir. From then onwards on every Hartalika (one day prior to Ganesh Chaturthy day) my father would remove the old paint of the Murti with turpentine. Then give scent water bath to it. Each one of us would participate in it and then repaint the same. On Ganesh Chaturthy day he would re consecrate it back on its Silver Shrine and we all would perform the pooja. I remember when I was young my school friends use to ask me whether we get Ganapati in our house. I use to tell them that our Ganapati is permanent. They would not understand me then. So Tarkhads were transformed from Prarthanasamajist to Idol Worshippers.

This Ganesh Murti in our house was once put to an acid test by my grandmother. My grandfather who was well known in the textile industry got an assignment from Maharaja of Baroda to set up a textile mill in his state. They therefore shifted to Baroda and were given accommodation in a bungalow on the bank of a river. In one rainy season it rained heavily overnight and by the time it was morning their bungalow was under water. This was a new experience for them. My grandmother was scared as the water level was rising hour after hour. The steps to the bungalow were submerged in the water except the last step. My grandmother then brought a flat copper vessel and placed it on the last step. Then she lifted the "Vighnaharta" from the Silver Shrine and placed it in the copper vessel and declared that if the Murti submerges in the water then she would proceed to perform the immersion ceremony of Lord Ganesh in the same waters. Of course her solemn intentions were that Lord should save them from that dangerous situation. I think only the staunch devotees can dare to venture into such dare devil acts and possibly God likes them. The water level rose further and touched the copper vessel and stopped rising any further. After 3 to 4 hours later the water level receded and they were all happy. Their "Vighnaharta" had come to their rescue, as they desired. In that year they performed the Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations for five days instead of one and half days.

I will proceed further to narrate one more incident about this Ganesh Murti. This incidence would throw some light on the title of this chapter. On one Hartalika day (incidentally dear readers my grandmother passed away on Hartalika day) while removing the old paint the part of the right hand of the Murti got dislocated from the Ibow onwards. My father was very scared because as per Hindu religion one cannot worship damaged Murti. However by now it had become integral part of the family and they would be reluctant to part with it. They decided to go through the celebrations and then seek advice from SaiBaba. Thus they proceeded to Shirdi. Dear readers is it not an unfair act on their part? They had never involved Baba so far in their business of Lord Ganesh and now in times of distress they wanted his help. On that occasion when they were in Dwarkamai Baba was unusually silent with them. They had realized their mistake and were feeling guilty about not involving Baba from the beginning. They were internally seeking his pardon for it. They waited patiently. Then as the crowd in the Dwarkamai receded Baba called them near. He addressed "Oh mother in the event our son undergoes a fractured hand we do not throw him out of our house. On the contrary we feed him and nourish him well so that he reaches the manhood." No sooner they heard this, they instantly fell at his feet and profusely thanked him. Dear readers I do not find suitable words to describe Baba"s wisdom.. He was really an "Antardnyani" in the true sense of the term so that he could read what is going on in your mind.

Great were those Baba's Leelas and great were these mother and son. This is how Baba saved the Ganesh Murti, which continues to be with the Tarkhad family for seeking their worship till date.


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Thursday, December 11, 2008

Sai Baba's Sandalwood Mandir

Previous chapters
1. Experiences of Tarkhad Family with Sai Baba - Preface
2. Meeting with Shirdi Sai
3. Second Meeting with Shirdi Sai Baba

As described earlier the visits of Tarkhad family members to Shirdi had increased. Their love for Baba was on the rise like the waxing of the Moon of first Fortnight. Although they felt like being at Baba's feet in Shirdi all the time, which in any case was not possible. They developed a strong desire to have a big size photo, which could be put to worship in their residence at Bandra. The idea behind was, when they were away from Shirdi they should not forget Baba, i.e. out of sight

© Online Shirdi Sai Baba Book Readingis out of mind. Both father and son had a peculiar nature that they would never speak about their love towards Baba. They had immense faith in him. They knew that he is Antaryami who can accurately read their mind and will surely organize to fulfill their desire at an appropriate time. As such Baba's two main teachings were Faith and Patience.

On one early morning Babasaheb and Jyotindra had a dream.They saw a beautiful carved Mandir and Baba sitting in it. The dream had deep impression on their mind. They got up and drew the sketch of the same, as such they both were good at drawing. When they came to the breakfast table they exchanged their thoughts about their dream of the morning. They brought their sketches and were astonished to see that the sketches matched in toto. They instantly decided to have such a Mandir in their house. They made inquiries and purchased Sandalwood. They appointed an expert carpenter and showed him the sketch of the Mandir and requested him to cave out one for them. Their Bandra residence had a small terrace and the Mandir making began over there. I think it took more than a year for the Mandir to take final shape. At the end of it 9 feet tall & 2 1/2 x 21/2 feet square Sandalwood Mandir was ready. Well they were in dilemma, from where to acquire Baba's portrait, which can be put for worshiping in that Mandir.

Dear readers you must be aware that Baba never allowed anyone to photograph him by a camera hence to get his portrait was a big task But Tarkhad's were confident that the dream was Baba's creation and he will therefore fulfill the same.

As their habit one Friday afternoon they visited Chorbazar in Mumbai They would dress up in a fixed attire i.e. Babasaheb in Coat Trousers with an English Hat and Jyotindra in Coat & Trousers with Black coloured Gandhi cap on his head. While they were going round in lanes of Chorbazar something unique happened. One Muslim shop keeper came shouting at them and said " Hey Gentlemen, all fhese days I am looking forward to meet you as I have a parcel for in my shop." Babasaheb and Jyotindra were taken aback and were worried that the shopkeeper might dump some stolen article on them. They questioned him that how could he select them out of so many people. The shopkeeper then requested them to move to his shop where he can explain everything. On reaching his shop he informed them that a few days ago one Saintly looking elderly gentleman came to his shop and handed over one parcel to him. He told him that on Friday one Hindu father and son are coming to this place. Father wears an English Hat and Son wears a Black Gandhi Cap. He handed over one parcel for them and also paid Rs.50/-as service charges.

I was therefore keeping watch on the people moving in pairs and located you rightly so. They were then beginning to get convinced by his explanation. He then brought the parcel and handed over to them. But they were still doubtful about the stolen material so they made him open the parcel before taking the delivery of it. He unpacked the parcel and it was a black & white Portrait of Lord Sai enclosed in a nice Wooden Photo Frame. Both of them were in tears and they confirmed to the shopkeeper that it is their Parcel. They profusely thanked him and offered to pay some money in return. The shop keeper declined to accept any money as he had strict instructions of the Donor. They use to travel in a Studebeker champion car and they could carry the photo frame safely to Bandra. They had another pleasant surprise as the photo frame fitted exactly in the Sandalwood Mandir without calling for any alteration. The entire Tarkhad family was overwhelmed with joy, which had no bounds. They then consecrated SaiBaba's Photo in the Sandalwood Mandir. My father use to religiously get up early morning and at 5 a.m. he would perform the pooja by sandalwood paste to Baba's forehead and lighting a lamp scented sticks. Sugar cubes were offered as prasad, which they all use to consume at lunch time. Now they all were eagerly waiting for their next trip to Shirdi.

As usual they entered the Dwarkamai and presented their offerings to Baba. He told them to be seated over there. One of the Sai devotees who was stationed in Shirdi and was frantically trying to take out a Camera photo of Sai for past few days and was unsuccessful came to Baba and requested for the last try. Baba suddenly became angry and shouted at him and said, " Hey, what are you craving for my photo. Please go to my Bhau's place and you will find me alive in that photograph in his mandir. No sooner my father heard this they were more than pleased for what all they had done in their house. Baba was confirming that he is receiving their worship daily. My father immediately got up and prostrated in front of Baba. My father prayed to Lord Sai internally stating that he may be granted such arrant that he shall never be able to forget Sai and shall keep singing only his prayers and nothing but his prayers (HECHI DAAN DEGA DEVA TUZA VEESARA NA VHAVA).

So this is the way Shirdi SaiBaba got himself consecrated into Sandalwood Mandir at Tarkhad's residence. This Mandir is available for Darshan at the residence of my late brother Ravindra at Vasai.



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Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Second Meeting with Shirdi Sai Baba

Read Preface and first chapter
1. Experiences of Tarkhad Family with Sai Baba - Preface
2. Meeting with Shirdi Sai

This is the second chapter of the book 'Live Experiences of Tarkhad Family with Sai Baba'

After experiencing such a wonderful meeting with SaiBaba both mother and son felt like quickly returning home and narrating the same to my grandfather Babasaheb Tarkhad. However SaiBaba had suggested to them to spend some more days in Shirdi so they conceded his request. They had consultations with Mr. Madhavrao Deshpande who was very close to SaiBaba and use to help and guide devotees. He told them that in the morning Baba was looking out for someone and on inquiring with him he said that his mother and brother are arriving to meet him. Mr.Madhavrao also informed them that normal practice followed by devotees in Shirdi is to leave the place only after seeking permission from Baba. They then wrote a letter to Babasaheb in Bandra stating that they are extending their stay in Shirdi as they have experienced © Online Shirdi Sai Baba Book Readingsomething unique Thus they spent about one week in Shirdi and after seeking Baba's permission and promising him that they would come back along with Babasaheb Tarkhad, they returned to Bandra their place of residence.

During their one-week stay they came across other Sai devotees like Shri Mhalsapati, Kakasaheb Mahajani, Shamrao Jayaker etc. They conveyed the entire episode to my grandfather & tried to convince him that Shri SaiBaba of Shirdi is not an ordinary person. He not only gives good medicines but also possesses supernatural powers. My grandfather took lightly the impressions of my grandma but was rather surprised to hear the same from my father .Of course both of them informed him that they have promised Baba that next time they will visit Shirdi along with Babasaheb.

Dear readers I firmly believe that, Babasaheb was also destined to meet Shirdi SaiBaba hence in course of time he met his friends Mr. Shamrao Jayaker, Kakasaheb Dixit, Justice Dhurandhar and he came to know that they all were Sai devotees. Finally my grandfather agreed with the family to visit Shirdi as an outing. As he was a very busy Person it was difficult for him to be away from the job. They decided to save on Friday night on a weekend along with his friends.

They were travelling by night train to Manmad .My father and grandma had spread their bedding and were relaxing. The Gents were busy playing cards. Train had left Nashik Road station and a Fakir with his hair tied with white cloth, entered the compartment. He came to my grandfather and begged for alms. My grandfather looked at him and he felt pity at his status. He took out a silver coin of one Rupee and gave him and asked him to move away. Fakir drew his attention to the one Rupee coin because it was rather too big an amount to be given in charity in those days. Here I wish to mention to readers that my grandfather was Secretary to Khatau Group of Mills and in the year 1908 he was drawing Rs 2000 per month as salary. He told the Fakir that the coin is genuine with stamp of George the V embossed on it and issued in the year 1905 and he need not worry about it. He requested him to move away as their card game was getting disturbed. The Fakir then moved away.

Next day morning they reached Shirdi. My grandmother and father directed my grandfather, as they were now familiar with the place. They had bath & breakfast and they along with pooja material entered the Dwarkamai. My father and grandmother bowed to Baba and touched his feet. Baba then gave a smile and turned to my grandfather and said "Mhatarya (old man) my mother and Bhau had to plead to you and after of persuasion you had agreed to come to Shirdi.

Have you recognized me?" My grandfather replied in negative. Then Baba put his hand in the pocket of his Kafni and he took out the one rupee silver coin bearing the stamp of George the V. He showed the same to my grandfather and asked, "Do you at least recognize this which you had given me last night?" Now my grandfather started recollecting the incident of previous night in the train and before he could say anything Baba told him,"Hey, that Fakir of the night was none other than me." Babasaheb was instantly overwhelmed. He realized his mistake that he had taken Baba to be a beggar. He felt very sorry for his act of the night. He bowed to Baba and asked for his pardon. He realized what Jyotindra and his wife had narrated about Baba was 100 percent true and Baba is not an ordinary person and he is a 'Messiah of the Lord' in the true sense of the term.

After this incident there was an unprecedented transformation in Babasaheb Tarkhad. He was no more a Prarthanasamajist. He developed a spiritual love towards Baba. He started taking important decisions only after aligning with Sai Baba. He started sending Tagas (Rolls) of cloth to Baba so that he can stitch Kafani out of it.

He had also send Petromax lamps for illuminating the Dwarkamai at niqht. My father use to light them every evening whenever he used to stay in Shirdi and hung them at decided locations in Dwarkamai. There is an interesting incident about this, which I will narrate later.

Dear readers in this fashion three members of the Tarkhad family came in contact with Sai Baba of Shirdi. Infact Baba only pulled them towards him like a powerful magnet. They all developed intense love toward Baba. Their visits to Shirdi had increased for simple reason that they started getting experiences, which were unique in their nature. They were nothing but miracles and this made them realize that Sai Baba is God's incarnation. I am going to reveal to you these experiences and I am sure you all will agree with me after you have read through them.

Baba returned the one rupee silver coin back to my grandfather and he said "Mhatarya l am returning your coin back to you. Please worship the same and your will have a very fruitful life. Believe in me. I never lie when I speak from this sacred Dwarkamai” Thus Baba addressed my "grandfather as "Mhatarya" and my father as "Bhau" and that continued in all their future conversations.


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Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Meeting with Shirdi Sai

Please read
1. Experiences of Tarkhad Family with Sai Baba - Preface

This incidence had taken place on a summer day. Jyotindra had just . had his lunch in an Irani Restaurant near Metro Cinema and was sing the road to go back to St Xavier's School where he was studying. This was his daily routine to have lunch in the Irani Restaurant during the recess time. That day while crossing the road one Fakir dressed in a white Robe accosted him and begged for alms. Jyotindra took out a coin of one paisa (a copper coin with a hole in the center) from his pocket and offered the same to that Fakir and was proceeding to the school. But the Fakir stopped him and he tol© Online Shirdi Sai Baba Book Readingd Jyotindra that it is one Paisa (denomination) coin of 1894. In those days people use to offer one pai as charity thus one paisa was rather a much higher amount to be given as charity from a student. Jyotindra told the Fakir that he daily gets four annas for lunch purpose and therefore he can give away one paisa as alms. Besides, this one paisa is a running denomination so that the Fakir should not worry about it. The Fakir then laughed and said, "Allah Bhala Karega," Jyotindra then proceeded to school and forgot about this incident.

Jyotindra had two elder brothers named Satyendra and Ravindra who were studying in medical college. Satyendra further acquired the degree as GGMC (Graduate of Grand Medical College later changed to MBBS). He is the uncle of the writer staying in Konkan Nagar at Matunga. (He is no more and his son & daughter are staying there). Jyotindra's brother was a doctor, his uncle was a doctor, and his grandfather was not only a well-known medical practitioner but also the family doctor of Viceroy of Bombay, then. In short it was a doctors family for Jyotindra.

But inspite of so many doctors in the family Jyotindra's mother means writer's grandmother was suffering from migraine and use to get severe headache. All sorts of medicines were tried but her migraine appeared to be incurable.

They had a house maid who worked with them and suggested to her she should go to one Pir called Maulana Baba near Bandra Masjid, who she further told gave some Ayurvedic medicines which were seem to cure even acute diseases.

Now in those days for a Hindu lady to go to a masjid to meet a Pir was an extremely difficult proposition. My grandmother suggested to her son Jyotindra who by nature a dare devil character organized for a Burkha and took his mother by car to Pir Maulana Baba. But natural when a human being is suffering from any acute ailment such religious boundaries are no longer difficult to transcend. But after meeting Maulana Baba their difficulties increased instead of easing out. Maulana Baba told my grandma that for this ailment that she was suffering from he did not have any medicine to offer but he told her that, "I have a brother named Sai Baba who stays at Shirdi and you can go to him. He will cure you and relieve you from all your sufferings"

Now both of them were in great difficulty. Firstly my grandfather was a strong headed Prarthana Samajist and they knew that he would not give them the permission to "meet such Babas. Secondly where is this Shirdi situated and how to go there was a big question?

However Jyotindra did not give up (Dear readers, here I believe that it was written in their destiny to meet Shri Sai Baba and therefore no one could stop them in doing so.)

He collected all the information from the owner of the Irani Hotel near Metro theatre.

He came to know that Shirdi village is in Ahmednagar District and one has to go by train up to Kopargaon via Manmad. Then from Kopargaon one has to travel in a horse cart to reach Shirdi, which is 9 Kms away. This means one has to be away from home for at least 3 days. Anyway Jyotindra organized for his father's permission and made all the arrangements for the journey. On one Friday evening both the mother and son left for Shirdi. On Saturday morning they were in Shirdi. They had made all the enquiry and after they had freshened themselves they reached Dwarkamai to meet Shri Sai Baba. They saw Sai Baba was sitting in front of the sacred Dhuni (Fireplace lit by Baba). My grandma bowed in front of Baba and touched his feet.

They looked at each other and what transpired between the two is as follows:
Baba said to my grandma, "Dear mother you have come. My brother from Bandra has guided you to me. Please sit down. Oh mother you' have a very severe headache is it not?" Then Sai Baba dipped his five fingers in the pan of Udi, (sacred ash) and hit the forehead of my grandma with that Udi laden hand. He held the forehead firmly in all the five fingers and said "Oh Mother from now onwards till your death you will never get any pain in your head. This headache of yours has disappeared forever." Dear readers my grandma was stunned with this act of Sai. She had not uttered a single word of complaint and how could SaiBaba knew the purpose of their visit and her sufferings. I think two acts of SaiBaba made a complete transformation of my grandma. One-the exchange of looks between them i.e. Eye contact and the hitting of the forehead with Udi laden hand. In fact it was an order to that decease to go away from that head. My grandma had never ever had such a powerful dose of medicine. What transformation she was experiencing she only knew it better. The sad look on her face from the headache had disappeared. She was feeling fighting fresh. She told my father Jyotindra to bow to Baba. My father was astonished to see all this. His mother had never ordered him like that earlier. Then my father bowed to Baba & touched his feet. Instantly Baba said to him" Dear Bhau (Brother),have you not recognized me?" My father replied in the negative. Then Baba told him "Please look at me and stress your memory and try to recollect." My father could not come to any pass. Then Baba put his hand in the pocket of his Kafani (robe) and took out the .copper coin of one paisa. He showed the same to my father and said "Hey Bhau! Do you remember this copper coin dating back to the year 1894, which you had given as charity to one Fakir while on your way to school? Now my father was beginning to recollect the incident narrated at the beginning of this chapter, His eyes were in tears and he instantly held Baba's legs in his hand. . Baba lifted him and said "Hey Bhau, that afternoon the Fakir you had A met was none other than me and your this one paisa coin I am returning ^ to you. Please take it back and preserve it very carefully. It will breed in multifold of paisas for you."

Now dear reader devotees you will surely agree with me that such a pleasant Sai Darshan which my grandma and father had must have been unmemorable for both of them and then onwards they automatically got attracted to him forever.

After this 1st divine Sai meeting the Tarkhad family decided to reckon SaiBaba as their Guru and they completely gave up themselves for his devotion. The headache of my grandma had vanished forever and her devotion towards God increased multifold. The one paisa coin was put to worship in our house.

We use to ask our father what exactly use to happen after meeting SaiBaba. He use to state that the Blissful Sight in his eyes had an enormous attraction which would pull any one towards him and that Midas-touch in his powerful hands could heel any deep wound. As you all know that SaiBaba never equated himself to God & would always state that he is a messenger of God. However my father use to say that the priest of Khandoba Temple (later turned great devotee of SaiBaba) Mhalsapati Bhagat had very appropriately named him in his very 1st meeting saying"Aao Sai Baba Aao."Our India is a land of many spiritual Babas and their devotees name them accordingly. My father use to say that SAI name suggests everything. His explanation was the word SAI in Marathi ) means SAAKSHAT (actual) and the word I means ISHWAR ( God). Thus from his point of view Sai Baba means Saakshat Ishwar Baba. I must say that what my father had experienced during his visits to Shirdi was something amazing and any common man like him after undergoing such divine experiences would come to only one conclusion that SaiBaba possessed that supernatural Godly Power. I consider myself lucky to have been born in this blessed family and wish that Sai's blessings be with us for all time to come.
"Om Shri Sainathaya Namaha."


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