01.Feature of the Week: Sai Apostle - Maata Krishna Priya
06.Question of the Week
07.From the Editor's Keyboard
08.Submit your article to Sai Vichaar
09.Subscribe to Sai Vichaar
From the Editor's Keyboard...
Sai Vichaar is saddened to learn about the demise of Shri R.H. Shamdasani, founder of Shamdasani Foundation engaged in Sai activities. May Sai bless his soul. Our thoughts and prayers are with Shri Shamdasani’s family and friends.
Several devotees have written to Sai Vichaar and SSBWSO requesting Baba’s udi to be sent to them (please refer to devotees Usha Sridharan’s and Madhu Chauhan’s mail in "Devotees Say" section). Sai Vichaar would humbly like to request Sai devotees to share with others in need of Sai udi. Please write to Sai Vichaar to coordinate the activities of sending Sai udi and other material to needy Sai devotees.
Sai Samsthan USA has scheduled its 2nd Anniversary on April 22, 2000. Please visit www.saisamsthan.usa for more details. Readers and devotees are requested to refer to Sai activities section of previous issues of Sai Vichaar to know more about various Sai activities in their area. If you would like to share information on Sai activities, please do so by sending them for publication in Sai Vichaar.
Sai Vichaar and Shirdi Saibaba web site organization is very happy to inform you about new changes to the way subscriptions are sent to Sai Vichaar for publication. Henceforth, authors and contributors can write and submit to a feature they like by using web pages off the web site. Please refer to (links) for more details. Contributors are required to create an author ID for logging on to the page and send in their contributions to various features. Please look forward to more changes that would simplify and expedite the publication of your contributions.
The "Question of the week" for this week is,
"Which anecdote of Sai do you like most? Why?"
Sai Vichaar is devoted to the philosophy and teachings of Shri Sadguru Sai Baba of Shirdi, and will take every measure to avoid topics or themes contradicting the same.
Sai Vichaar team or the Shirdi Sai Baba web site organization is not responsible for the opinions expressed by individual contributors.
"ENDARO MAHAANUBHAVULU", said Saint Thyagaraja in one of his songs. There are great many saints in India. One was the unassuming lady Krishna PRIYA. She was born in a brahmin family near Amalapuram, Andhra Pradesh, India. She married an Indian accounts officer who finally retired as Accountant General at Nagpur. She told me that she died eight times when she was young. Each time Shirdi Sai appeared to her and cured her. She continuously had health problems one after another and each time she was cured by Baba's grace. She got so much linked up with SAI maharaj soon after her marriage that she spent all twenty four hours with Baba whom she used to see in physical form number of years after his death. Since she got completely involved with Baba she got her husband married to her sister and led a celibate life devoting all her time to Baba smarana and teaching of Baba to others. She established first A Shirdi Sai temple in Amalapuram and gradually devotees joined her in devotion and she used to be their guru. When her husband was transferred to Nagpur, she lived there and built a great temple of Baba there and she also built another big temple at Pachmarhi a hill station in Madhya Pradesh, India and every year her devotees used to spend time for two to three months in that mountain resort and follow the path devotion as directed by her. At Nagpur some devotees continued to stay under her directions following the bhakthi marga as enunciated by her and in praise of Shirdi Sai Maharaj. At one time she mentioned that when she was at Simla, Shirdi SAI BABA visited her place physically and took athithdyam in her house, having stayed in her place. It is said that this incident was indirectly confirmed when Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai baba mentioned that he visited a devotee’s place in Simla in the form of his earlier incarnation.
Matajee used to visit devotees places like Guntur in Andhra Pradesh and also Madras. My brother who was a veterinary doctor was once controlled by one Shakti upasaka at Guntur. This gentleman developed some powers including controlling others. When my brother was sick in Madras, he used to shout that he should be taken only to that Guru in Guntur. At this stage my brother started doing Sai satcharithra parayana, and when he went to Guntur he visited Mataajee. He placed bananas in a plate and placed them before her. Mataajee was taking naivedyam to the room where she did puja to Shirdi Sai and would bring them back to the devotee. These bananas used to have printed letters on the bananas, which would be the message/command of Sai to the devotee. These messages looked like print in Telugu (which I saw). In the case of my brother, the message was that there are different types of gurus, neecha and automata-bad and good, and that he should give up the bad guru and follow the good guru. From that time till his death in 1998, he only read Sai satcharithra and left the other Guru in Guntur. While I was working in Madras, I again met her. At that time, I was smoking tobacco pipe. My wife requested her to direct me to give up smoking. She did not tell me, but shortly afterwards I gave up. There also I saw her getting bananas with messages to various devotees.
(Contribution by Sai devotee MRK, Phoenix, AZ, USA)
Usha Sridharan, Alberta, Canada
Madhu Chauhan, Galveston, TX, USA
Vasudha This is in response to the question by Tania from Brazil. Dear Tania, Sai Ram. Always treat Sai Baba's picture as your guiding light. Look to it for guidance and advice in all aspects of your life. Offer dhoop, agarbatti or light a diya in front of Sai's picture. If you observe a fast on Thursdays, then light a diya during morning prayer and also during evening prayer just before you break your fast. Apply haldi or chandan to Sai's picture and also offer parshad. May Sai help you to follow his path.
This is in response to the prayer by Malini,Dubai,UAE. Dear Malini, Sai Ram. Please don't treat what you are getting in your life as a punishment. When you believe that Sai Baba automatically solves problems, then why do you worry so much. Whatever we get in life is a parshad from HIM. He loves us dearly and knows what is best for us. But we do not trust his judgement and decision. Believe in Sai that whatever you get in life will be for your own good. You may realize this later in your life. Surrender your life to HIM and ask HIM to take care of you. He will never ever abandon you. Try to grow your interest in Sai's teachings and you will observe that life is to be loved and not regretted. I have passed through similar situations as you have. I also used to worry a lot ,but worrying never solved my problems. Soon I realized that trusting and accepting Sai's decision helped me to understand life better and to simplify it. When you are facing problem , try to look at people who are in deeper trouble than you, who may have a lost a dear one, who cannot afford a meal a day and you will realize that your troubles are very few. May be God is testing your faith in Him. May be God has decided something better than you can dream of. COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS and TRUST THE LORD. Your best identity is to be a true and devoted Sai Devotee. May God always help you and guide you to the right path.
Balaji, G.D., Canada
A Sai devotee
Srinivas Puppala Fairfax,VA ,USA.
Sai Darbar, Hyderabad, India
Reported for http://www.saidarbar.com by SRINIVASA RAO KASTURI from Hyderabad-India.
SAI IN ANNADHAANAM-6 Date 12/4/2000, Time: 10:00 Hrs (IST). Venue: Shiridi SaiBaba Temple, Sainikpuri, Secunderabad, AP, India. This Annadhaanam function was organized on the request of Smt Lata ben from England on the festive occasion of Sri Rama Navami in the temple premises of Shiridi Saibaba at Sainikpuri. Volunteers from www.saidarbar.com assembled at the temple by the noted time. The hardware and utensils were supplied by the temple authorities and food preparations commenced. The site remembered us of Dwarakamai. That was the place where Sai used to prepare and serve food to one and all with his own hands. By 12:00 noon the food was cooked. Sharp at 12:15 Hrs the devotees sang the Madhyaana Arthi. At 13:00 Hrs Volunteers moved the food items to Sanjay Gandhi colony in a trolley car which was about 6 KM away from the temple .The residents of the colony were all leprosy-affected patients they were eagerly awaiting our arrival. The Annadhaanam was completed with the active participation of Smt Lakshmi and Smt Mogulamma. A transient thought swept through our minds as if Sai himself was present for the occasion and rightfully reminded us of leprosy ridden Bhagoji Shinde who was an ardent follower and devotee of Sai. http://www.saidarbar.com team prays Sai to bless Smt Lata ben for the financial support given. Our sincere thanks to the staff of SaiBaba temple, Sainikpuri for all the help and Manpower assistance extended.
What could a Sai devotee do to reflect Sainath's teachings on religious harmony?
What leads to religious disharmony? When you have religious leaders with cultic belief leading people to believe that there is none other but there own belief to be true and there are no other way but they themselves; we get great and adverse catastrophes similar to that what happened most recently in Africa. A priest actually mutilates his followers so that they could be with Jesus! and the priest himself free at large with all these pitiful and unquestionable people's savings. His belief- that there was no other way but Jesus, who could save his flock. (http://news2.thls.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/world/africa/newsid_694000/694519.stm). Without a doubt such will be the results, when you have such fanatical belief. To me it only highlights the self-ego - I, me, my ways within them that leads me to think how can such religious people ever be a part of the universal brotherhood of man, for they lack not only wisdom but neither do they have any knowledge of self-realization. Sometimes to have nothing to do with, or to keep away from, such distorted or harmful teachings can be the best to society and least harmful to oneself. With such teaching not only does the leaders ego and devious ways to fleece, that are exposed and need to be ridiculed but the approach taken by them to criticize others should also be tried and punished in court of law if one could get judgmental. Baba had His own unique ways of imparting spiritual truth and experiences to His devotees and yet there were other times without any mincing of words He very clearly stated that all, is it Hindu, Muslims or whoever worships, reflects the ONE AND TRUE GOD. It is God, who inspires all scriptures, and that God is one, though called by different names. All brethren are equal in His sight.
To a question from a devotee about where one can find God, Sainath simply said, "Awaken your inner self. You will find God ". It grieves me to see Christian priest who can say Jesus is the only way or even Muslims countries taking such strong stance that no other religion can be practiced openly in their countries and claims that Allah alone is God! True as it is that religion breathed itself in the east and we in the west have long lost our identity with God. We have raced ourselves to be technologically advanced, something we are proud of, but at what cost - religion! When it comes to peace and! tranquility of the mind we find ourselves so void simply because we have failed to learn the essence of religions and its ways to find God. It is God who ultimately gives all hope, strength and understanding, to the importance of universal brotherhood discarding all caste, color, creed, and religion.
As a Sai devotee, my prayer to Baba is to make me do what He wants, knowing the best way I can do anything is only with, the proper understanding that He is the Actor, Doer, and also the Achiever. I need to totally surrender at His divine feet with an attitude that I am His instrument and that all the results are His. As His devotee, I must take every effort to be more loving, caring, helpful, encouraging, giving, merciful, kind, and tenderhearted to those around me and the ones in need. If I perform these as my daily duty faithfully and obediently, meditating on His name, remembering Him and His virtues, I will be His instrument reflecting my Lord's teaching of religious tolerance and harmony to whomsoever I meet.
"Which anecdote of Sai do you like most? Why?"
A Sai devotee, Vancouver, BC, Canada
This week's question is perhaps among the most difficult ones to address, as Sai's life is full of anecdotes that are most appropriate for the time, place and the person. Accordingly, His innumerable anecdotes perfectly match our range of situations. It is up to us to select what suits us best, dig out and take away the wealth in cartloads from the bottomless treasury of spiritual wealth that Sai is only all too eager to let us 'take and take'. >From His guidance, let me share the one that I practice most regularly and has been having positive effect. During my childhood, my elder brother who had experienced Sai during his stay in Pune always kept some food aside before starting to eat. Somehow, being proud of my habit of eating all the food that was served on my plate without leaving anything behind, it was difficult to appreciate why my brother was wasting food every time. The significance of my brother's practice became clear after reading 'Chanak-Leela' in Chapter XXIV of Shri Nagesh Vasudev Gunaji's translation of Shri Hemadpant's Shri Sai Satcharita. Shri Sai Baba in a very casual, characteristic and humorous way teaches the importance of remembering Him before the senses, mind and intellect enjoy their objects. This He did by telling that "This fellow (Annasaheb alias Hemadpant) has got the bad habit of eating alone". Sai recognizes that Shri Hemadpant shares food with persons present. Then He asks Shri Hemadpant "What will you do if none are near-by. Do you still remember Me before eating?" Following such a practice of remembering Him and keeping some food aside and offering bread to birds outside our house every morning has had a tremendous influence on me. It is now a regular habit for me to think of Sai as often as possible before undertaking any activity. The effect cannot be expressed, but such practice is gradually enabling me to appreciate the all pervasiveness of Sai, realize the Oneness of Guru, God, Self and the World, and experience contentment in life. God Bless All. Jai Sai Ram!
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