1. BIRTH, RACE AND FAMILY
Though I am unborn, whole soul, Lord of all creatures, taking to my life-nature, I manifest myself by my powers. (Bh. Gita 4-6.)
The self same soul has transformed himself principally into the Sun, the Moon, Brahma the creator, Vishnu the protector, Shiva Shakti the Destroyers with his Goddess. I bow to that excellent light of lights.
My salutations to that Bhagwant, Lord who is free from anger, attachment, above Maya and devoid of three states of wakefulness, dream and sleep. The best of gods, ascetics do not know the farther end of your Maya Power. The demons were most powerful; you forced them to give up their egotism when the world is beset with worst calamities, you manifest yourself and come upon the earth, Oh Lord.
Vallabh Bhagwat IV, VIII Chs. 7&17.
The Primordial, original, perfect Reality, the thing In-itself beyond name and from inspired by the force of devotee’s religious merit automatically manifested itself as Sai Nath, Sai Baba for the purpose of leading the lost souls to the path of Truth. When asked, His only reply was "Brahma is my father, Maya is my mother and this Universe is my house." That He descended on this earth through some human mortals has not yet been established through reliable source. No conflict of opinion exists however as to His being an extra-ordinary incarnation of God or the highest of perfect beings.
Brahman by His Maya Power manifests itself as human being, when irreligion stalks unchecked in this world. He comes and places religion on sound foundations dispelling the clouds of doubts and dogmatism. He descends in particular to protect the good, the saintly and to destroy the bad and the wicked.
Though beyond (above) limitations of time, space, causation, body, mind, intellect etc. pure Brahman, has by Maya power the capacity of assuming such form male or female-as would satisfy the devotees’ desires and their ideals. It is ever ready to please its real devotee in this respect and even serves him incognito, Saints who have attained oneness with this Brahman that is who have ceased to be bodily minded, who have without their knowledge transformed themselves into Brahman by constant meditation on the same are Brahman with all its Powers. Etc. (Mundak UP. 3-2-9)
Shri Sai Baba falls in this category and so His devotees have seen in Him their ideal of God realised and so they have described Him in many different ways as their ideals of Guru or God have differed. To staunch devotees of Shri Ram, Shri Sai appeared as Ram, to those of Shanker, Maruti, Krishna, Vithoba, Akkalkot Swami, Gholap Swami and Ali irrespective of their race, caste, creed or religion. They all look upon Sai as their God, Saviour, or Prophet and worship Him as such in their own way, propitiate Him and crave blessings from Him. As an out-come of this propitiation each one of them feels and realises that he has been lucky enough to find in Him his benign father, protector, benefactor, a helper in distress, a safe refuge amidst the turbulent waters of this world. Each one has realised He is omnipresent, omniscient omnipotent.
Recipients of such experiences seldom care to ascertain how and whence this rarity descended upon this earth, who His blessed parents were, who His master or teacher was and yet there are amongst intelligent educated devotees some persons who have bestowed much labour and done a deal of research to hit upon proper and satisfactory answers on these points.
Vedanti devotees of Baba Shri Sai look upon Him as the manifestation of knowledge incarnate, the joyful Brahman, the giver of highest happiness, free from dualities, ether like knowable by the four Maha Vakyas (key-sentences) of Vedas, the sole, the permanent, the pure, non-changing, the Universal witnessing Intellect, the one beyond emotions and the three gunas-pure, mixed, and impure-tendencies, the Master, teacher of Reality. The non-Mohammedan devotees of this class firmly, believe that if Shri Sai Baba had adopted Hindu Mohammedan mixed ways of life and prayers it was simply for the purpose of drawing the attention of these devotees to the cardinal truth, the soul has no caste of race; that their object of proper worship is not of any caste; and what are castes? They are not skin, blood, flesh nor bones; but these castes are fixed for the purpose of the smooth running of this world. Hindu devotees of Baba particularly, Brahmins and other Dwijas believe that if Baba had donned Mohammedan garb and adopted some Mohammedan ways of worship (without giving of the ways of the purest of pure Brahmin sages) it was for the purpose of killing or removing the wrong interpretation of Veda and drawing attention to the truth that everything all without exception-is Brahman; that difference of diversity or duality does not exist; that if Veda says that Brahmins are God’s mouth, Kshatriyas His hands, Vaishyas his body and Shudras His legs, the intention of the Vedas is not to show the inferiority or superiority of any one of these castes but to draw attention to the fact, that each is these castes but to draw attention to the fact, that each is a part and parcel of the same Holy body of God. Similarly about the genesis of races’ if one Upanishad states that Non-Aryans came from the nether part of God, it is to root out the hatred and bitterness that might have been raging between these races and to rivet the attention on the oneness of the Holy Body from whom the Non-Aryans have also emerged. Vedas and Upanishads teach us to look at the unity in diversity and preach only oneness of soul, no difference, dissention. Discord but unity. Peace and accord is the burthen of the Veda, Upanishad and Vedanta. Veda and Upanishads have no doubt prescribed worships of different God’s but these are only for persons who hanker after material happiness and are not satisfied with mere realisation of Truth. Baba called upon persons of the latter class to follow His directions to achieve the ends of their material desires and they had their desires fulfilled. His guidance and His sole worship have obtained for these devotees what they desired and in this way also He encouraged one worship and not multiple worship, Viewing Vedas. Upanishads and Baba’s ways, Vedanti devotees have always believed that to root out the ego of castes pride and to teach them the oneness off all pervading all-knowing, all powerful god, irrespective of race, caste, or creed, Baba adopted the special ways of life that he did. In fact His life laid stress on the essentials of religions, discarding the non-essential parts thereof.
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