Tuesday, November 28, 2006
It has been 14 years since, the writer has been introduced to what he would like to call the grace of Baba, at the age of 22, when he happened to visit the holy land SHIRDI. Since that visit the writer has been drawn to Shirdi a number of times. It has been like “ there is some extra money for staying at least a couple of days in Shirdi, lets go to Shirdi.” Much reading about Shirdi Sai, talking about Baba has continued since. And a joy, an intense attraction, a feeling of deep closeness with Baba, a deep sense of devotion, a sense of togetherness, which is not created by the writer, has been a vital part in writer’s life.
Getting drawn to Baba and Shirdi, How can the writer be away from the great holy book Sai Satcharitra, which has touched millions of devotee’s hearts, minds and souls. Along with Sai Baba of Shirdi, the writer has also been drawn towards the books of Shri Ramakrishna Paramhansha, one of the greatest of the devotees who ever walked on this earth. Meher Baba, the Avatar of this age. J. Krishnamurti, who would intellectually and logically point towards our own pattern of thoughts, the way we live, and points out to us how we build the wall against the grace and the sacred, while always getting engaged in self centered activities. It is from j. Krishnamurti’s books, that writer began to read Sai Sat Charitra, with greater intensity. Very slowly, and letting each word and sentence of Baba from the book, to remain in head and heart, holding it and letting it work on the mind and the heart.
Also from J. Krishnamurti’s talks the writer began to question his self, on each statesman of Baba. How deeply the reader allows Baba’s words and guidance, to penetrate his self.
Whether Baba’s words of Baba are read or forgotten, or they allowed sinking in. Does what Baba has said and pointed to is taken care of or is it that the writers own personal comfort, own personal greed this worldly or the otherworldly is ruling.
The question had arisen at the writer’s recent visit to Shirdi. Due to Diwali holidays, there were too many visitors for the darshan of Baba. Baba’s devotees had filled the land of Shirdi so much, too little space was seen empty. The writer with his family was sitting in the Mukhdarshan area, watching Baba’s Murti. The writer was feeling grace and a kind of satisfaction, difficult to put in words, that is always felt in the Holy Land Shirdi. He then went to near by Maruti temple, as his son wanted to put garlands on the neck of Hanumanji’s statues. The son happily put a couple of garlands on each of the two Hanumanji’s statues, spent some time and they both were again on the way back to Mukhdarshan. Going back through the heavy crowd, the writer happened to see a meager puppy, visibly hungry. At once thought came to writer’s mind. So many devotees for Baba’s darshan, all with their wants, and out of all, none care for what Baba had said. Baba in Sai Satcharitra and in various other stories have suggested that feeding hungry, may it be human or animal, is feeding Baba, who is seated in the heart of his devotees and every living creature.
None from the crowd feels the pity for the hungry puppy, and instantly the question was pointed to the writer. The writer was no different. He too was more concerned with getting the mind and the heart drenched with sacred vibration of the Holy Land. Of what importance are the sacred vibrations if it cannot evoke pity for a hungry being. For even he walked towards the Mukhdarshan without feeding the hungry puppy. As the thought came he went in search to buy something for the puppy to eat.