SHRI C.B. SATPATHY'S MESSAGE
……“While at Shirdi, Baba
used to mutter something occasionally, a sort of loud-thinking,
which only He understood. At times, He would say astounding
things either completely out of context for the listeners
or out of reach of their imagination. On one such occasion,
He was heard telling a devotee that in future big buildings
would come up in Shirdi, big people would visit the place
and also that people would make a bee-line there. The meaning
of His divine utterances was not understood then. Today a
crowd - at average of about thirty thousand, is visiting Shirdi
every day. People from all parts of India, both the richest
and the poorest, are visiting Shirdi. Baba can never be wrong
as He had knowledge of the past and future, not only of the
individuals meeting Him but also about events before and after
the duration of His physical existence.
Incarnations like Baba
play a role, both at micro and macro levels. At the micro-level,
they take care of the individual souls, not only of human
beings but also of other species, who are drawn to them by
their mighty will like chained birds, as Baba used to say.
Baba used to recall His past life relationships with many
of them, in one case, stretching as far back as seventy-two
lives. He also spoke about the past lives of other species.
At a macro-level, Baba once commented that during 1854 and
1858, He was busy with Rani Laxmibai of Jhansi, thereby, indicating
his role in the transitional phase of Indian history. Earlier,
Baba had spoken about Mughal Emperor Humayun and the birth
of Akbar in which he had a role to play.
Limited human intelligence
can only perceive the activities at micro-level of the Perfect
Masters; it can never perceive their role at the macro-level.
History, therefore, is a limited projection of human activities
at micro-level. No historian so far, has been able to bring
about the hidden game of the Perfect Masters behind all the
temporal powers on this earth.”…….
"LIFE OF SAI BABA" BY NARASIMHA SWAMI
But what are prayers but thoughts? Many a person fancies that
he must put forward a definite demand in prayer to the ‘highest’
powers and get it granted by force of prayer. There is some
truth in this mixed up with much error and confusion. What
comes often after prayer and is supposed to be the result
of prayer is very often something fixed up by a higher power
which, as part of its plan, produces the thought of prayer
first. Prayer often proves to be the immediate predecessor,
but not the efficient and direct cause of the result. ‘Post
hoc, ergo propter hoc’ (i.e. ‘after that; therefore due to
that’) is what we frequently say and believe. Many a man says
‘I prayed; I got it. So it is prayer that got it’. But this
is neither logically nor theologically sound. The fact is
that prayer is a means of placing one in contact with higher
beneficent powers and there it serves its primary purpose.
Incidentally when a devout soul is deeply concentrating on
God, what happens is that the soul gets so thoroughly saturated
with the divine that divine power infiltrates into the Jiva
and the combined power or the higher power (both are the same,
despite difference in names) produces certain results. It
is the man of prayer that draws down divinity, i,e. turns
divine at the moment of intense prayer and is responsible
for certain results (Etad hyeva aksharam jnaatwa yo yad ichchati
tasya tatkhat, i.e. Having realised the Imperishable, if one
has desire, that is fulfilled, even when the results have
not been previously fixed up, as the result of previous karma.
It is always good to pray,
because it brings one in contact with God. The prayer, however,
that is found most common in society is occasional prayer
for a definite material object, and there it stops. It is
always advisable to avoid the commercial spirit when dealing
with God. We should not bargain with God. Nor should we say,
‘I will pray to you only for such and such an object being
gained’. The thought of God purifies the soul, and the purified
soul gets power to draw God more and more into it. The commercialised
soul, if too much oppressed with the contemplation of the
worldly benefit is handicapping itself and preventing its
purification, that is, saturation with God idea (purity means
having God-idea and impurity is lack of God or God-idea).
The very idea of material objects may so obsess a mind as
practically to obliterate the thought of God. God then becomes
only a secondary consideration, a sort of side element, a
weak coloration when the main object before the mind’s eye
is worldly gain. Such approaches are deplorable, however attractive
the object to be gained by prayer may be. One ought to have
prayer without concentrating too much on worldly gains. Concentration
on God alone is purity. Purity means power, and when a soul
is thoroughly pure, then the objects entertained in the mind
of the prayerful soul some time previously, that is even before
the prayer began, remain in the subconscious, i.e. at the
back of the praying party’s mind and may come to fruition
by the power of the purified and strengthened soul. This is
an incidental benefit which ought not to turn the scales when
one considers how he should pray. Prayer is primarily and
essentially only an affair of the soul with God. All intervention
of outside objects is an interference with the soul’s concentration
on God. Prayer must be purified by very keen practice - i.e.,
it must be shorn of all undesirable gross elements just as
we keep off the floating moss repeatedly when we bathe in
a tank. In cases where however one is in dire extremity and
prayer comes out from him for a much needed object, in spite
of oneself, then prayer cannot be condemned at all. Prayer
is a natural vent for the heart. We leap out at what we want
on the wings of prayer. It is God Himself that has implanted
this tendency to seek God’s help to attain objects of great
importance to one’s material or spiritual life and each time
we so seek, we should stress in our mind that God is our first
and final object and that other objects form a temporary and
partial diversion or screen.”……
If you are thinking a year ahead,
sow a seed.
If you are thinking ten years ahead, plant a tree.
If you are thinking a hundred years ahead, educate the people.
By sowing a seed, you will harvest
By planting a tree, you will harvest ten folds.
By educating people, you will harvest hundred fold.
(Written by an anonymous 6th Century
BC Chinese poet and cited in John White, The Meeting of Science
and Spirit, HarperCollins India Pvt. Ltd., Delhi, 1997, p.
I have ventured to approach this
subject with gratitude to all my Gurus, Parental, Spiritual
and Academic, who have hand-held me through the journey of
At different stages of our lives
we are confronted with different choices and options. In making
important decisions for ourselves and for the people we love,
we try our best to take these decisions based on as much information
as we can possibly get. Each decision we take involves making
a choice and for every choice we make, there are roads or
options not taken.
Some of the decisions we take in
the course of our lives are routine and minor. Should I spend
my time at play or study? Chat with friends or read a book?
Listen to a boring lecture or bunk it? Study hard or have
a good time? Spend my pocket money on another new dress or
buy another book? What films to see or not see, what to cook
for dinner, and so on are marginal and mundane decisions that
we take on a daily basis. Other decisions are major and can
have long term ramifications or effects. What subject to study,
what career to choose, where to study, where to work, whether
to live in my own country or abroad, and most important of
all whether to be kind and helpful to others or uncaring and
The decisions we take depend on:
• our aims or objectives,
• the knowledge set or information available to us and
• the time horizon over which we plan. In other words are
we planning for long run or the short run.
If any of these change, very often
the decisions we take will change as well. So if a person's
time horizon is one year sow a seed, if ten years plant a
tree and if a hundred years, educate the people. For the returns
or harvest that will accrue be different and will depend on
the investment or decision or actions that we take.
Courses on optimal decision making
use techniques such as static, linear, non linear, recursive
and dynamic modeling and are taught over several semesters
in the University. However the logic on which these models
are based is simple and given below and has been extended
to apply to the choices we make in our lives.
Suppose there is a farmer who has
a few acres of land and he has to decide what crop to grow
on it. Assume that his sole objective is to maximize his profits
or income from the crop he grows. His decision regarding his
optimal crop mix or best combination of crops to grow or optimal
crop mix decision will be based on information available to
• prices and yields of different crops,
• the amount of inputs such as irrigation, pesticides, labour,
tractor time, etc. required by each crop
• the prices of each of these inputs.
In addition he will also take into consideration constraints
such as suitability of climate, soil conditions and his own
If the farmer has a one year time
horizon, he will only be concerned with maximizing profits
this year and so will choose the crop mix that will give him
the highest possible income this year. If his time of horizon
extends over several years, he will be concerned with the
long term effects of growing different crops on his farm.
For instance different crops have different varying effects
on soil erosion and soil productivity. He may find that growing
wheat in the rabi season followed by rice in the kharif season
is extremely profitable for the first few years but may need
high pesticide usage and reduce soil productivity, and therefore
income, in the long run. Planning for the long haul or thinking
about returns that will accrue to his children and grandchildren
from the same farm or even to himself in his old age could
change his crop mix decisions completely. Therefore as the
time over which we plan changes and as new information is
made available to us, the choices we make change as well.
Let us examine how our Sadguru
Baba looked at these issues. In Sai Satcharitra, Shri Hemadpant
relates an incident in this regard. A friend of Damu Anna
wrote to him from Mumbai about the possibility of a profitable
partnership in cotton trading/speculation. Damu Anna was vacillating
and wrote to his friend Shama at Shirdi, requesting him to
ask Sai Baba for His advice in the matter. Damu Anna's objective
was to get rich but he wanted to hedge his risks by checking
with Baba whether the business would be profitable. He wanted
his life to chart a certain course. But Baba's objective was
to help him evolve spiritually, and Baba's reaction was “it
seems Damu Anna wants to reach the sky and is not content
with what God has given him.” And further that the "sheth
has gone mad; write to him in reply that nothing is wanting
in his house, let him be content with the half loaf that he
has now, and let him not bother himself about lakhs."
(Hemadpant, Shri Sai Satcharitra, Shri SaiBaba Sansthan, Shirdi,
1999, P. 131)
The cotton business failed and
Damu Anna was saved from suffering losses by listening to
Baba's advice. But even if the business had been profitable,
Baba's objective function was different from Damu Anna's.
Damu Anna was concerned with maximizing his material prosperity
(a harvest that you reap just once), while Baba was concerned
with the spiritual evolution of His disciples (a harvest that
you reap over many lifetimes).
Suppose I assume that I have only
one life to live and in this life my objective is get rich
as quickly as possible and live as comfortably as possible
regardless of how corrupt I am and what unfair means I use
to accumulate my wealth. Change the picture and assume I now
• I will be born again and again and the only possessions
that I can take with me from one life to the next are the
consequences of my actions, both good and bad.
• Each decision or choice involves certain actions and every
action has a reaction that determines the suffering or happiness
that accrues to me in this or some other life.
• Each hardship that I face can be traced back to a mistake
that I made in this or some other life.
This information set changes the rules of the game completely.
Looked at in this light, suddenly
money or property or name or fame that is acquired unethically
becomes a serious and long term liability. Prosperity based
on corruption or theft or acquired by grabbing what was not
my just share, becomes a source of suffering that will affect
me and and/or those I love in this or in future lives. Every
unethical action, every harsh word, every selfish act, every
dowry demand, every exploitative transaction, every seeming
success based on treading on other people's toes acquires
the ability to damage not just the intended adversary but
myself at some or many points of time in the near or distant
future. The inequalities between and within countries created
by unfair exchange, diversion of funds that should have been
used to alleviate hunger and suffering, senseless hurt inflicted
on people in the name of religion, aggression, exploitation
and subjugation, are actions with potential monstrous ramifications.
The connection remains blurred
for most of us for the damage to me from such actions may
occur years later or lifetimes later. But once the veil is
lifted and my knowledge set expands to include the reality
that the connection between the action as a cause and the
suffering as its consequence or effect is an essential "law
of nature" my world view changes. And with the perception
of this reality should come an automatic change in every decision
that we take. The entire teaching and experiences of the Sadguru
Baba's life provides innumerable
instances of His efforts at promoting unity between Hindus
and Muslims, of Sabka Malik Ek, of love for all of God's creatures,
of caring for and loving those who are vulnerable or deprived
and of even begging to collect food to feed the hungry. We
have a wealth of knowledge available to us in Baba's teachings
in the Shri Sai Satcharitra. Using or not using that knowledge
in our daily lives are options available to us. The choice
decision and the reactions or debits and credits of our choices
and actions are ours. For in the final 'analysis, the responsibility
for our karma is ours.
Aasha Kapur Mehta
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Of blessings You've given me, Lord,
I thank You each day as I kneel and adore.
Such pain as there is in this earthly life;
Heartaches, sorrow and, O Lord, the strife.
These blur my vision of Your kingdom above
And make me doubt that I've ever known love.
It's hard to imagine the plan of
When life has me trapped by its many demands.
I worry and fret; I'm plagued by concern
To the point I don't know which way to turn.
What is the reason, why am I here?
What am I to be, for those I hold dear?
Will the pain go away if I just understand?
Speak to me, Lord! I'll do all I can.
Guide me when I lose Your way,
Guard my tongue in all I say;
Speak to me, Lord! I need much more
So I don't lose Your way, I humbly implore.
And while I'm so bold, each one of the needs
Of family and friends, grant them, Lord, please!
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On Vijaya Dashami Day in October
2001, I was to undergo surgery on medical advice in Re-union
Island, which is a Prefect of France and is a small island
(near Mauritius) in the Indian Ocean. The chief surgeon, cardiologist
and anesthetist advised administration of "fraxiparine"
for a week prior to the surgery. This was to be continued
for a fortnight after the operation to prevent the onset of
phlebitis or a pulmonary embolism in the post operation period.
I was admitted to Saint Clotilde
Clinic a day prior to the surgery. The medical staff visited
my room and scrutinized my medical reports and advised me
to be prepared for the surgery the next morning, which was
Vijaya Dashami Day. In response to my query regarding the
administration of "fraxiparine" I was told it would
be given by the medical staff at the appropriate time. Early
in the morning of the following day, a staff member of the
hospital came and prepared me for the surgery and I was taken
to the operation theatre where the designated surgeon along
with other medical staff successfully conducted the operation.
After 3 hours I was brought back to room No. 338 where my
wife had placed a photograph of Baba on the side table of
the hospital bed. The next 24 hours were painful and I was
on a drip without any food. Despite administration of pain
killers, I suffered that night and did not get proper sleep.
The next morning, at about 10.00
a.m. the Chief Surgeon came to monitor my progress. After
examining me he was satisfied with my progress and the healing
process. He recommended that I could take only half cup of
tea during the day and very light dinner in the evening. After
wishing me a speedy recovery he left the room to attend to
other patients in the adjoining room. I requested my wife
to check with the surgeon if I could drink water as I was
very thirsty -and had a strong urge to quench my thirst from
time to time. My wife went to the other room to consult the
surgeon. The corridor was crowded and the cleaning personnel
and nursing staff had already started their daily routine
job of cleaning, distributing medicines etc.
In this hustle bustle, a man of
medium height, square face, bespectacled, with a necklace
of beads with sharp features and small beard entered my room.
He was wearing the hospital uniform and gave the impression
that he was a doctor at the hospital. He pronounced my name
and came straight to my bed and announced time for "fraxiparine."
He administered it with perfect efficiency at the appropriate
place at the bottom of the abdomen as was normally done by
the trained staff. Unlike earlier occasions, the injection
was painless and did not even leave any mark on the body.
"Fraxiparine" was injected after two days. And the
gentleman left the room abruptly with a smile. My wife then
entered the room and enquired about the purpose of the doctor’s
visit. I explained to her that he came to inject "fraxiparine".
I was relieved to learn that the surgeon had permitted me
to drink small quantities of water for a day or two. We talked
about the children and future plans while the medical staff
visited the room for various purposes. They were curious about
the photograph of Baba in the room.
In the afternoon at about 4.00
p.m. the nurse on duty came to check my progress and informed
me that in the evening a staff member would come to inject
"fraxiparine" essential for post operation treatment.
I was surprised and informed her about the visit of a male
doctor in the morning who administered "fraxiparine"
and questioned the need for another in the same day. Intrigued,
she checked her record and stressed that it did not indicate
any such injection. Besides, there was no male nurse on the
staff of the hospital and added that no one was authorized
to do this without the approval of the control room as also
ensuring that it was mentioned in the medical record of the
patient. Both my wife and I insisted that a doctor had visited
and injected "fraxiparine." I described the colour
of the pack of the injection, which the doctor took out of
his uniform pocket before injecting it at the appropriate
place. This created panic and the Nurse was genuinely worried.
I advised her to contact the surgeon and inform the hospital
authorities. Her report of the incident was received with
disbelief. An emergency meeting was called and preliminary
enquiries revealed that no staff member was authorized to
inject "fraxiparine" that morning.
On my advice the police were informed
as this was around the time of the Anthrax menace in the USA.
The police came and took a statement from me and drew computer
images for identification of the culprit. The hospital authorities
conducted an internal enquiry. The Prefect or the head of
the government on the island handed over the investigation
of the case to the police and judiciary. The border was sealed,
all the exit points were guarded and security arrangements
were strengthened, with special arrangements in the hospital
and at airports to monitor the movement of people. Authorities
in Paris were contacted and their assistance was solicited
for the investigation. My blood samples were sent to Paris
for examination. The local security agencies worked on several
theories - namely it was job of an outsider, possible terrorist
act, personal enmity or work of a person of unsound mind.
All the investigations were inconclusive
and led nowhere. No one from the hospital staff admitted that
they administered the injection on that day. No one on the
staff resembled the person who administered the injection.
In the parade for identification on the basis of computer
images, I could not identify the person. Terrorism was ruled
out since I was admitted to the hospital with anonymity and
discretion. Even my presence in the island was unknown to
important authorities. That it was a work of a person of unsound
mind was also doubtful since the injection was administered
at the appropriate place with perfect professional efficiency.
The results of several biological tests also did not reveal
anything unusual. Everything was normal. For six months authorities
in the island and in France investigated the case but they
remained clueless and had to close the case as they were not
successful in identifying the person involved in the incident.
I returned to Madagascar, a nearby
country, where I was posted on a diplomatic assignment. Life
continued normally. No one could give a satisfactory answer
as to why "fraxiparine" was not administered on
the day prior to the operation and on the day of operation.
One month after the incident we told our relations in Myanmar
about it. They consulted our revered family guru who after
meditation disclosed that a saint who has blessings for the
family had saved me from calamity that would have resulted
from the negligence by staff during my illness. He further
added that I was fortunate to have a Darshan of the great
saint and attributed this to my good Karma in the past. It
was then that the mystery was solved and we realized the kindness
of Baba who guarded me all through the medical crisis. I remember
the smile on his face at the time of his visit and the photograph
that we placed in the hospital room.
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God's Smoke Signal
survivor of a shipwreck was washed up on a small, uninhabited
island. He prayed feverishly for God to rescue him, and every
day he scanned the horizon for help, but none seemed forthcoming.
Exhausted, he eventually
managed to build a little hut out of driftwood to protect
himself from the elements, and to store his few possessions.
One day, after scavenging for food, he arrived home to find
his little hut in flames, with smoke rolling up to the sky.
The worst had happened, and everything was lost. He was stunned
with disbelief, grief, and anger. "God, how could you
do this to me?" he cried.
Early the next day he
was awakened by the sound of a ship that was approaching the
island. It had come to rescue him. "How did you know
I was here?" asked the weary man of his rescuers.
"We saw your smoke
signal," they replied.
It's easy to get discouraged
when things are going bad, but we shouldn't lose heart, because
God is at work in our lives, with us even in the midst of
pain, and suffering.
Remember that, the next
time your little hut seems to be burning to the ground. It
just may be a smoke signal that summons the grace of God.
Thank you for sending BABA and
HIS grace to me. You are indeed fortunate to be serving HIM
by doing this. You do not know how much of solace I got seeing
HIM. Especially in this hour of need when we recently came
to know that my husband has a massive decrease in his kidney's
I have spent sleepless nights asking
HIM if HE has forgotten me, for HE does not visit me the way
HE used to. I can never finish thru the SAI SAT CHARITA Parayan.
But HE stays with me in my heart, HE is there next to me when
I am about to do something I shouldn't be and HE stops me
We live in a suburb, Hoffman Estates,
in Chicago. Please tell me where you live, and is there any
way I could help serve Baba.
Share your feelings about Shirdi Sai in
I am receiving this Sai Heritage E-Zine newsletter since
last week through my friend. I asked for direct subscription
of the newsletter on my email id. I got it today and I am
really thankful. The last article in today’s newsletter given
by a child of 7 years regarding Baba not liking people who
cheat and lie during exams answered questions going on in
my mind. I have my exams coming and I was really worried about
it. Thanks so much for boosting my morale.
Geeta Nair, Mumbai
I am really
grateful to all those who made the magazine Heritage of Shirdi
Sai and the website www.heritageofshirdisai.org possible. I
have no words to express my feelings that arise when I read
the experiences of other devotees. Please do continue to share
such experiences with us as it guides us to lead a happy life
and reminds us to just think of our Great Baba at all times.
Shekhar, Texas, USA
OF SHIRDI SAI ACTIVITIES
SAI BABA SANSTHAN, CANADA
Shri Shirdi Sai Baba Sansthan,
Canada holds Satsang on Thursdays and the 3rd Sunday of every
month at Gur Mandir, 207 Queen’s plate Toronto (Etobicoke).
For details other activities and the Resource Centre please
visit http://www.shirdisainath.org/ or call 416-294-4804
THE RESOURCE CENTRE
Shirdi Sai Baba Sansthan,
Canada is pleased to announce the establishment of it's first
Resource Centre in Woodbridge, Toronto. All visits are by
appointment only. Shri Sai Satcharita is available in all
languages. The Resource Centre is open Monday to Friday between
10:00 am - 5:00 pm. Location: Maple Crest Private School -
28 Roytech Rd. Woodbridge, On L4L 8E4 Ph: 905 - 652-6666.
For other Details call 416-294-4804 or visit http://www.shirdisainath.org/
SHIRDI SAI MANDIR, TORONTO, CANADA
The Shirdi Sai Mandir located at 2721 Markham Road, Toronto,
Ontario, M1X 1L5 (Intersection of Markham and Nashdene) is
open through out the day on Saturday, Sunday and holidays
and in the morning and evenings on all weekdays. Baba's Kakad
Aarti, Abhishek Puja, Madhyan Aarti, Dhoop Aarti, Satcharita
Reading and Shej Aarti are performed every day. Bhajans and
Sai Naam Sankirtan in the evening on Thursday and Saturday.
For information regarding the daily schedule, temple activities
and events please visit Mandir's website:http://www.theshirdisaimandir.com/
or send an email to email@example.com
or call 647-444-4724.
PERSATUAN SHIRDI SAI BABA SELANGOR, MALAYSIA
I belong to the Shirdi Sai Group (registered as Persatuan
Shirdi Sai Baba, Selangor), Malaysia. Sai Ram everybody. This
to inform Baba’s devotees in Malaysia and Singapore that every
Thursday we conduct prayers in the morning at 9.00 am and
bhajans and satsang in the evenings from 7.30 pm onwards.
Anyone who is interested in joining us may please contact
SP Kannan at 012-2739486; or Usha at 012-2392911; or Res:
03-33717540. Also if you come across any Malaysian devotees,
please direct them to us. Thank you and Sai Ram.
Shri Shirdi Sai
Sansthan Los Angeles
By the grace of our Shirdi
Sai we are happy to announce the inauguration of Shri Shirdi
Sai Temple in LA region in the city of Montebello. We need
the support of all Sai Devotees. For more information please
Shirdi Sai Center,
Bay Area, California
Location: 897-B E. Kifer Rd, Sunnyvale, CA - 94086
Daily timings and activities:
6:15 am – 7:40 am: Abhishekam and Kakad Arathi at 6:30 am
11.45 am – 12:30 pm: Madhyan Arathi at 12:00 pm
6:00 pm – 9:30 pm: Dhoop Arathi at 6:30 pm and Shej Arathi
at 8:30 pm
6:15 am – 7:40 am: Kakad Arathi at 6:30 am
11:00 am – 9:30 pm: Madhyan Arathi at 12:00 pm, Dhoop Arathi
at 6:30 pm and Shej Arathi at 8:30 pm
7:30 pm – 8:30 pm: Shirdi Sai Bhajans
For more information please
call 408-705-7904 / 408-564-6704 or send email to firstname.lastname@example.org
or visit our website at http://www.Shirdisaiparivaar.org
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