Newsletter

N E W S L E T T E R
VOL23, MARCH 2007
Heritage

FROM SHRI C.B. SATPATHY'S MESSAGE 

……“Shraddha or devotional faith is the most difficult state of mind to achieve. If one has absolute faith in his Guru then sooner or later he will even look like the Guru with all His attributes. However, the seed of faith takes a lot of time to generate and to grow. It may take years or even a few lives. Full faith in Baba does not come, as quickly as one desires it to be like Shravan, Kirtan, Poojan, Dhyana, etc. The Navadha Bhakti i.e. the multifold type of bhakti is not bhakti per se. They are either methods of bhakti or reflections of bhakti or both. Further, externality of devotion may not necessarily indicate the internality of devotion.

Some people, at times say that only if Baba desires then bhakti will grow in their hearts. By saying so they make Baba responsible for generating bhakti in them. In the ultimate analysis it is true that Baba generates bhakti in a devotee’s heart. But, if the person so desiring conducts himself in a manner that Baba desires, then the type of bhakti he seeks will certainly be generated by Him. If one starts praying to Baba for bhakti and yet continues to conduct himself in an unethical manner forbidden by Baba, then how do we expect Baba to generate bhakti in his mind? To this some people say that even bad conduct is created by God and unless He desires this can’t be controlled. This time also the burden is squarely on Baba or God and the devotee does not want to take any responsibility even for his own conduct. Even under these circumstances Baba can control his conduct and generate bhakti in him, provided he leaves all other aspects of his life on Him and awaits patiently for Him to guide his destiny. Faith or surrender means leaving everything on Baba – body, mind and soul. But partial surrender will lead to partial bhakti, and its partial results only. If one is sincere enough and fully surrenders to Baba then He will control his desires and conduct. Under these circumstances neither he should work nor seek anything himself but leave everything to Baba in totality. Then, if he is prepared to bear the consequence of this state of utter inaction then Baba will certainly control his conduct and give him the type of Shraddha he seeks. There are many examples of many devotees in Shirdi, at the time of Baba, who had left everything on Sai including all their material and spiritual needs, and Baba did provide these to them. If one cannot come to this state of utter inaction then, he should go by the normal path of Navadha Bhakti and should be responsible for his own conduct to start with. God has given enough intelligence to human beings in comparison to animals, to discriminate between good and evil. Such practice will slowly but definitely grow devotion in him imperceptibly.

However, this slow growth means waiting patiently under all circumstances on the mercy of Baba, which is nothing but Saburi. Saburi is, therefore, an essential factor for the generation, sustenance and growth of devotion. Both faith and patience are complementary to each other. Faith without patience will bring loss of faith at frequent intervals of time and will not allow its growth. Similarly, only patience, without actual faith, is an exercise in futility. A balance in both will bring about even growth of both in a person.

Faith again means trying to do what we have been asked to do by Baba and resist from doing what has been forbidden by Him. Even if we fail a number of times it does not matter, the main point is whether we are using our God given faculties to their maximum limits. When we want to use our faculties, time and energy for getting close to Baba we have to cut down on many other activities. Therefore, the person who wants closeness with Baba should always try to reduce the non-productive, capricious and non-essential activities like late night parties, addiction of any type, uncontrolled thought, speech or action, etc. Such improvements will not only gradually control the mind but will also save time and energy for more purposive and creative activities, like study on Sri Sainath, meditation on Baba and His worship in any form. The devotees should always try to improve their inner qualities of patience, faith, tolerance, egolessness, and gradually, closeness with Baba will increase. But, the most important two qualities which are fundamental, as often said by Baba, are "Shraddha and Saburi".”…….

 

FROM "LIFE OF SAI BABA" BY NARASIMHA SWAMI   

……“Damia had occasional curiosity which prompted him to put questions. First he wanted to know when so many people were crowding to Baba whether they all got any benefit from him. This was a mental question. Baba at once replied, ‘Look at the mango tree in blossom. If all flowers turn into fruit, what a splendid crop it would be? But do they? Most fall off by wind. Very few remain.’ The second question was, “If Baba should pass away, how helpless Damia would be”. This also was a mental question. To this Baba answered, ‘I will be with you whenever you think of Me and wherever you think of Me’. This was mentioned before 1918 and is fulfilled even after 1918. Damia says, ‘Even after Mahasamadhi He is still with me. He is still guiding me.’ in his statement made in 1936. So, he is one of the Ankita children of Baba, whom Baba guided, corrected and helped.”……

 

ARTICLE

'Shri Sai Satcharitra'

The significance of 'Shri Sai Satcharitra' (written by C.B Satpathy) are : -

• This is the first and foremost book based on the life-story of Shri Sai Baba, which was originally composed in Marathi verse form. The writing of the book started in the lifetime of Baba with his blessings.
• The Hindi translation of this book is in simple Hindi language, which can be understood even by a common man.
• The divine truth imparted by this book is even greater than the knowledge contained in the Vedas and Geeta, because all the characters and events in it are real and authentic as also recorded in details by many devotees.
• Because of the expression in simple Hindi it is easy for every one to comprehend it. Today there are very few people who can understand Sanskrit language properly and absorb the meaning and substance easily.
• The spiritual essence contained in all the religious scriptures like Vedas, Geeta, Yoga Vashisht is found in the life-story of Shri Sainath.
• The concepts on God and spirituality are explained in such a simple yet comprehensive manner in 'Shri Sai Satcharitra' that no additional book, or commentary etc. is required to understand it. It has a natural flow of which the readers starts feeling as if they had been closely associated with its events in their past life.
• I may mention here that the glory of Shri Sai is spreading in the world, far and wide, in such an amazing way that detailed information at the web sites on Internet about Shri Sai and 'Shri Sai Satcharitra' is available for interested readers.
• The foremost duty of a Sai devotee is therefore to read 'Shri Sai Satcharitra' and absorb it by heart if possible. The more they read this book, the more it will bring them closer to Baba and all their doubts and apprehensions will be cleared.
• It also has been experienced that during crisis if any devotee is searching for an answer, if he randomly opens of 'Shri Sai Satcharitra' praying Baba sincerely and with faith, his answer can be found in that open page.
• Many people have got their desired benefits after reading 'Shri Sai Satcharitra' for a week in a parayana form.

Therefore, 'Shri Sai Satcharitra' should be utilized by all Sai devotees in the following manner:
1. Get the book, 'Shri Sai Satcharitra' in whatever language one chooses to read. Neatly wrap it up in a piece of new cloth, and place it near Baba's photograph or idol with due sanctity.
2. Whether at home or elsewhere, one should always read a few pages of the book every night before going to sleep. Every devotee should try to keep Baba as the last thought before sleep.
3. During crisis it should be read devotionally for a week, as is mentioned in 'Shri Sai Satcharitra'. If possible, reading should begin on a Thursday or on some other special day, such as Ramnavami, Dussehra, Gurupurnima, Janmashtmi, Mahashivratri, Navratri, etc. After it's completion on the seventh day one should feed the poor and destitute either in the temple/home or wherever possible.
4. One should read it sitting in some isolated corner in the temple or in front of Baba's statue or Photograph/painting. If other people are present, then it should be read to them or with them as well. Group reading should always be encouraged.
5. Wherever and whenever possible, it should be read continuously from sunrise to sunset in the temples on auspicious days. Devotees may be asked to read it by turn as is done in chanting the holy name i.e. Naamjap. Encourage children to read this book. Question answer competition from the "Shri Sai Satcharitra" can be organized in temples.
6. 'Shri Sai Satcharitra' should be read to the devotees - sick, old and those nearing death as much as possible. All of them will get peace.
7. 'Shri Sai Satcharitra' is a reasonably priced book and is easily available at Shirdi. Therefore, any devotee visiting Shirdi must bring a few copies with him to distribute among the deserving people free of cost.
8. At times, of distress and agony if one sincerely searches for the answers from 'Shri Sai Satcharitra' he will not only find the answers but also solace. His faith will grow in Baba. I pray Shri Sainath to reveal the divine knowledge and mysteries contained in this book to the devotees in the same manner in which he had inspired Hemandpant to write this book sitting in his heart. Shri Sai Satcharitra should be taken by all Sai devotees as Geeta and Bible.

C. B. Satpathy, Delhi

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POEM

WHY I NEED GOD

When I was ecstatic,
You were there
To share my ecstacy.

And in my sorrows,
You stood by
To console me.

When I was lost,
You were there
To show me the way.

And in distress,
You reminded me
To trust my abilities.

When I was jealous,
You were there
To caution me.

And my pain,
You simply
Took it away from me.

You taught me that
anger could kill,
And destroyed it
before it destroyed me.

When I forgot to love,
You were there
To love me,

And when I hated,
You showed me that
You still loved me.

When I was tired,
You filled me with energy
And when charged up,
You gave me
Courage to conquer.

You taught me to be gracious in victory
And protected my honour in defeat.

When I fell down,
You were there
To pull me up.

And when I flew high,
You reminded me
Of the ground lying beneath.

You are my philosopher and guide,
And my bosom friend
Who always comes back in need……..

I know that
You would stay by me
For ever and ever.

C. Devidasan

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DEVOTEE'S EXPERIENCE

In 2003 we had to sell our flat in Hyderabad, India as we were leaving the country for good. I had to do the sale of the flat all by myself and was really worried as we did not have much time for this.

One morning I got up from my bed with a sudden jolt and found, to my surprise, my eyes were wet. I realized I had seen a wonderful dream with 'Sai Baba' coming in my dreams.

In my dream I was guided through the hilly areas of Nasik by a white glowing 'Deepam' until I found myself in a big courtyard of a Maharashtrian gentleman and his wife. It seemed as if I was invited to their house for lunch. They requested me to wait for a while, as both husband and wife were busy with the lunch preparations. I sat in their courtyard on a wooden cot. As I was about to sit, I saw Baba standing near me. He said with his arms waving, "Why do you worry, I am there but now I am tired, put me to sleep." I started tapping him to sleep. Soon his white figure changed into the figure of a side faced Hanuman. A bright diamond like light, shone on his forehead. I closed my eyes and my dream was over.

This Maharashtrian gentleman was to be the buyer of my flat. The face I saw in my dream resembled him. At the time when we were negotiating, his wife was in Shirdi. Later when I saw her she was wearing the same coloured saree and the gentleman had the same red paste applied on his forehead, as in the dream. He was very helpful throughout the formalities required for completing the sale. At this juncture there was some problem regarding the transfer deed of the flat. But just then an Insurance agent came and offered his services. All my problems were solved. I realised much later that Baba was helping me all through. I used to go a temple near my house and he heard my prayers. I pray to him that HE should be with me always, and all the needy people.
'BOLO SHRI SATCHITANAND SADGURU SAI NATH MAHARAJ KI JAI'

Rohini

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DEVOTEES' FORUM

Our daily life should start with prayers. The moment we get up from bed let us chant Om Sai Sri Sayee Jaya Jaya Sai Guru Sai and thank Him for allowing us to have a good sleep and to allow a good prayerful day also. Then comes nature worship. Every one goes out to office or place of business. How many look up at the sky and say thanks to Suryanarayana. This completes your sandhya /pratha karma in a very effective way. While eating food again say thanks to Sai. This way you are inviting Sai to be with you throughout your life. This type of prayer does not require any elaborate ritual. On holidays please visit poor people/orphanages etc. This keeps our eyes and ears open to the difficulties of others and render manava seva and this is Madhava seva. I am following this and I find that I am able to meet the right type of people in my life all along.

R.A. Chandiramouliswara, Chennai

The daily life is full of turmoil. The ambitions, aspirations and expectations are a constant source of misery to one and all. Remembrance and meditation on the holy name of Guru deep within our heart gives us little solace and energy for meeting the needs of daily life. I feel only a spiritual person can offload all his or her worries at the lotus feet of Guru and find peace.

Anand Kumar Tewari, Noida

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READER'S REFLECTION

It was very inspiring and overwhelming experience to read vol. 22 of your newsletter, specially the article by Dr. Aasha Kapur Mehta. It was so close to reality of life and the example given was excellent. Please do continue with such motivating and practical advice on how to lead one's life in this birth so that there is no sorrow or regret later that we have not done what we should have when there was time.

Sushil Saxena, Delhi

I am really grateful to all those who made the magazine Heritage of Shirdi Sai and the websitewww.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. SAI RAM

Ashalatha Raja Shekhar, Texas, USA

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NEWS OF SHIRDI SAI ACTIVITIES

SHIRDI SAI BABA SANSTHAN, CANADA

RAM NAVAMI CELEBRATION

Shri Shirdi Sai Baba Sansthan, Canada (Toronto) Cordially Invites all to Join in Celebrating Ram Navami Festival on Saturday March 31 2007 program starting with Kakad Aarti at 8:00am to Shej Aarti at 7:30pm – Maha Abhishek& Alankar - Bhajan Sandhaya - Naam Jaap – Paalki Procession – Preeti Bhoj (lunch & dinner with refreshments) at 207 Queen’s Plate Dr. Etobicoke M9W 6Z7(Highway27 & Rexdale just south of Humber College Blvd ). For further details 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 info@theshirdisaimandir.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 email krishna@shirdisaila.org

 

Shirdi Sai Center, Bay Area, California

Location: 897-B E. Kifer Rd, Sunnyvale, CA - 94086

Daily timings and activities:

Weekdays:
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

Weekends:
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

Every Thursday:
7:30 pm – 8:30 pm: Shirdi Sai Bhajans

For more information please call 408-705-7904 / 408-564-6704 or send email to saibandhu@yahoo.com or visit our website at http://www.Shirdisaiparivaar.org

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