Newsletter

N E W S L E T T E R
VOL26, APRIL 2007

FROM SHRI C.B. SATPATHY'S MESSAGE 

……“These great souls are called the Sadgurus or Perfect Masters or Qutubs or Adepts. Shirdi Sai Baba was not only the Param Sadguru of His time but is the incarnation of this Age. That is why even after departure from the physical existence His influence is spreading allover the globe. Highly self-motivated devotees are doing yeoman job to propagate His preaching. Sai is as He was. Today under His benefic influence, the Sai Age has dawned and this is what every devotee has to understand.

The role of the incarnation is more expansive and spreads over thousands of years. We should celebrate Guru Purnima as a token of love for these great souls who made total sacrifice of themselves for the evolution of mankind, and ameliorating the sufferings of crores of human beings that come in direct or indirect contact with them. The least one can do to these infinitely merciful entities is to remember them, pray to them and follow them.”…….

FROM "LIFE OF SAI BABA" BY NARASIMHA SWAMI   

……“He was once asked by a Prarthana Samajist, 'Shall I ask you a question? 'Yes', said Baba. The Prarthana Samajist asked, 'Do you look upon all people equally?' Then Baba said, 'Yes, I look upon all equally'. It requires some sense to ask a question. The point is that Baba had several persons to whom he showed great consideration, for example Nana Chandorkar, Tatya Patil, M.B. Rege and others just as Sri Krishna showed special affection for Arjuna. Baba distinctly stated that he was anxious to help Chandorkar, Patil and Rege, and did actually help them. Yet, Baba has said that he is impartial and does not prefer one to another. What is the explanation? The same as in Sri Krishna’s case. If anyone has previously been loving Baba and getting attached to him with repeated efforts, the natural law of psychology and of ethics makes Baba respond to him more vigorously and constantly than to others. Thus he seems to favour those persons who have been constantly drawn to him in the past. Nana Chandorkar had been his sishya for four janmas, and the affection of four janmas cannot go for nothing. That is why he sends for Chandorkar when he has not sent for any one else in the world. Similarly he takes the naivedya of Mrs. Khaparde first without touching any of the previously offered ones, because for several janmas, one after another, she has been anxiously and lovingly taking up naivedyas and giving milk and food to him. Baba said, the food she gives me is sweet, with her love. Similarly towards Tatya Patil, Baba showed considerable concern, and helped him to get a large income on which income-tax was levied. He was well known to be the pet of Baba. The reason was what Baba himself gave out and what everybody knew. Tatya Patil’s parents were greatly attached to Baba from the very beginning of Baba’s visit to Shirdi when he had made no name and exhibited no powers. Tatya Patil’s mother would run into the jungles taking food in her hand to feed Baba, a self-forgetful fakir, who did not care for his food. She was looking after Baba with so much love even in this janma. Baba’s nature like Bhisma’s nature had gratitude as its bedrock, and he could never forget such ardent and loving service. He also explained that Tatya’s mother was his sister in several previous janmas, and she was always feeding him. Therefore, Tatya, being a son of his sister of so many janmas, was expressly called by Baba his nephew, and Tatya always called Baba his Mama, that is, maternal uncle. The effects of so many janmas cannot be forgotten or brushed aside, and that is why Baba paid so much attention to Tatya. Tatya’s own conduct towards Baba was also one of great surrender and attachment. Tatya used to sleep in the Mosque along with Baba and Mahlsapathy for many years, that is as long as he was a bachelor, and Baba used to attend to his body and soul. Baba would massage his legs, make passes over his head and see that he did not come to grief. Tatya was a person of no education, and would ordinarily get easily ruined in the countryside. But Baba’s company kept him up to a pretty high mark of culture and morality, and thus saved him from spiritual and moral shipwreck. There were also factions in the village, and bickerings of various sorts were common. Baba occasionally helped Tatya even in those bickerings where he had sufficient reason. He would help him even with chamatkars, that is super normal powers. Some men of Tatya’s faction like Raghu were charged before the Kopergaon Magistrate for outraging the modesty of a Marwadi woman. On the evidence of six eye witnesses, Raghu and his set were all sentenced to imprisonment. This was the result of faction. The case was not true. When Raghu was crying in the Ahmednagar Jail, Baba appeared to him in a dream and told him that he would be released quickly. Tatya took up the appeal papers first to some lawyers in Ahmednagar who thought that the case was too strong to have any success in appeal. But when the papers were taken to Baba, Baba ordered the papers to be taken to Bhav, S.B. Dhumal, Pleader of Nasik, to be presented by him with an appeal memo before the Ahmednagar District Magistrate. Baba by a wonderful chamatkar gripped the mind of the District Magistrate and made him acquit Tatya’s whole set of men, Raghu and others without sending for the papers or reading the judgment or the appeal memo, or issuing notice to the respondent. This might be considered to be a very strong piece of evidence showing Baba’s love of Tatya leading to the disregard of Law. That is true. But still, if Baba secured justice without caring for and observing the formalities in a special case, there seems to be nothing wrong in it, for in the annals of civilian trials, there may be several extraordinary instances showing disregard of laws of evidence and procedure. Coming back to the question of Baba's love for his devotees, his love for Rege was the return of a powerful love by the young Rege to him. In Rege’s vision, Sri Narayana appeared and pointed out the figure of Baba to him as his Guru. In a vision Baba had told Rege that he was bound to him and that he Rege, need now bow to Him. On the first day of Rege’s visit at Shirdi, Baba appeared to give Rege a rebuff, but told him in the afternoon that Rege was his child, and embraced him. He loved Rege and encouraged Rege, because Rege's bhava was Putra, that is, the child of Baba. Baba offered to give any promotion that Rege wanted or anything else that he wanted. But Rege wanted only that janma after janma, Baba should be with him. He cared for nothing else. That is the proof of his strong affection. Allam bhakta Paradenah that is, I am subjugated by the love of my devotee is a statement not merely of Narayana but also of Sai.

Baba also said, If one ever dwells on me in his mind and will not even taste food before offering it to me, I am his slave. So also if he hungers and thirsts after me, and treats all else as unimportant. I am bhaktaparadheena the bond slave of my devotee. I love devotion.”……

TOPIC OF DISCUSSION

SPIRITUALISM IN DAILY LIFE

Man is fortunate to have choices in life, using sense of discrimination he can evolve and by making a right choice. Unlike in olden times man has the freedom to choose his religion as well. With his ability to rationalize and be informed about the values and practices and ideology of a particular religion; he chooses to move away from the religion he is born into.

The main aim of choosing religion is to follow and attain spiritual progress and be at peace. Often one mistakes religion and spirituality to be one and the same and uses these words interchangeably. There is a subtle difference between both terms. Religion is a set of practices, rituals and beliefs that one conforms to either in a institutionalized setting or at home. On the other hand spirituality is the understanding and following the religious values in life, conforming more to innate spirit of an individual unlike the temporal practices of Religion.

A man initially follows a religion aiming at progression towards spiritual evolution. His spiritual progress is ascertained only when he is able to internalize the values governing that religion and apply it in day to day life. The basis of every religion is simple and it comprises being pure in thought and behaviour, love for all beings, compassion to fellow beings and being content with what one has and being charitable. These values are easier said than practiced. Living and being entangled in the materialistic world it is hard to be filled with pure thoughts and behaviour when the fight is for survival of the fittest.

For one who wants to progress in spiritual life, he has to constantly remind himself that in order to progress at the spiritual level one has to imbibe the values and live by them in one’s daily routine. One step at a time and one conscientious act of kindness with humility, love and generosity is required to tame our wild and erratic mind. For practicing these virtues and progressing in spirituality one need not be isolated from the world. All it needs is adapting these values in our daily routine. Hoarding is result of greediness and it pulls man to the lowest levels of behaviour. In order to get rid of his attachment to the materialism, charity is prescribed in scriptures. It is easy to love our relatives, but He who loves one who hurts him is the true devotee of God. It is difficult to accept one who does harms us, but the greatness lies in forgiving such a person and winning him over with love.

A man who makes such a conscious effort to live a simple life by accepting everything as the will of God and follows values as laid out in the religious scriptures, such a man progresses faster spiritually. Of course one needs Guru’s blessings to overcome obstacles and also to persist in the efforts to follow these spiritual values in daily life. O Master!

Give us your blessings to practice spiritualism in daily life.

Anitha Kandukuri, Australia

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DEVOTEE'S EXPERIENCE

It had been a long time since my parents could leave me all by myself. After a period of prolonged illness, I had been totally drained of my mental and physical strength. There was time in my life when I could do things all by myself. Once upon a time, I savoured the joys of a solitary existence, wallowing in the warmth of my being. But those were things of the past. Solitude was now terrifying. It was as if life was mocking at me. But there comes a moment, a moment of epiphany in life, which heralds the coming of good times. Miracles happen, however tiny. You have to believe in them.

That evening in June, my parents had to leave me behind. I had managed to put a brave front and had calmly agreed to stay by myself. I had decided not to let my fears get the better of me. Because they had been invited to attend a wedding ceremony and were going to be late, I had asked a friend of mine to give me company for a few hours. My parents left. And I waited for my friend to arrive. She had called to confirm that she would reach me in half an hour’s time. Gradually the afternoon melted into picturesque summer dusk. The sky was splattered with myriad hues. I stood on the verandah, looking at the scene outside. Children were playing happily. A cool breeze was cheerfully blowing. My parents kept calling me to ensure everything was fine. As the blissful dusk transformed into the darkness of the evening, I felt the shadows of fear slowly creeping into my heart. My friend had still not arrived…..

I sat watching the T. V. with empty eyes, to distract myself. Suddenly the doorbell rang. I was relieved; maybe my friend had arrived at last. I opened the door, and who should be standing before me? It was my aunt, a cousin of my mother’s. What was she doing here, when she should have been at the wedding? I asked her to come in. But she was in a hurry. She was on her way to the ceremony, and decided to stop by and deliver a little packet on the spur of the moment. I took the packet and she left. By then, it was already dark outside. It was quiet and eerie. The street lamps had flickered to life, trying their best to cheer up the murky lanes and alleys and my miserable self.

I stared at the packet for a long time. It was from a friend of my mother's. Curiosity got the better of me and I opened it. To my surprise and delight, out came a little framed picture of Sai Baba, with a little packet of holy vibhuti and prasad. And it had come all the way from Shirdi! My mother’s friend had been to Shirdi and had sent it for her. But for me it was a divine moment. My friend had arrived. Baba was my friend and he had come to ease the mental and physical agony that I was going through. I felt lonely no longer. I realized a friend was there for me, to help me in times of distress, to talk to me when there was nobody around. It was as if the colours of the sky had filled my bleak world with richness. The picture of Baba came as a blessing. I began to feel a lot better. I spent the evening, doing my work.

Soon, my parents returned. And with each passing day I began to regain my strength. I started enjoying the pleasures of solitude; I had learnt to do things on my own. Although it took me several months to become my usual self, I remained undeterred and kept fighting to get back my lost state of health. Every time the dark clouds of depressive bouts shrouded me, I looked into Baba’s eyes and they vanished within a second. Miracles do not happen, they have to be sensed. Miracles do not announce themselves with a flash of lightening or a peal of thunder. It is the spark within, that whispers quietly into your heart that a blessing has been granted to you and that things will be all right...Thank you Baba, for being there for me and with me.

Amrita Satpathy

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DEVOTEES' FORUM

PATIENCE

He who has faith has... an inward reservoir of courage, hope, confidence, calmness, and assuring trust that all will come out well - even though to the world it may appear to come out most badly.

Learn the art of patience. Apply discipline to your thoughts when they become anxious over the outcome of a goal. Impatience breeds anxiety, fear, discouragement and failure. Patience creates confidence, decisiveness and a rational outlook, which eventually leads to success.

Shreya, Delhi

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READER'S REFLECTION

The message in the Guru Purnima issue 2006 of Heritage of Shirdi Sai is very nice. I liked it. More on the same lines would be great reading--- I am told that Satpathyji has written some few odd thousand verses (in poetry format) in Oriya language. How about getting the same translated in English? Why not share it with all? It would be a delight to read, I am sure.

Yagyasaini Kakkra, Delhi

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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.

 

SHIRDI SAI TEMPLE SINGAPORE

The dream of having a full fledged exclusive Shirdi Sai Temple in Singapore, will soon come true. Thanks to the efforts of a Sai devotee in making this happen.

Here is a golden opportunity for all of us to be part of this initiative.

We are planning to collect the Mantra 'Om Sai Nathayah Namaha', 1 crore times (10 million). To participate you need to write the Sai Mantra 'Om Sai Nathayah Namaha' in a language of your choice minimum of 500 times. Please mention the number of mantras on the front page on the top right hand corner. There is no restriction on the maximum number of mantras.

All devotees are requested to try their best to hand-write the mantras/prayers.

Please ensure that the mantras/prayers reach one of the following addresses by 15th April 2007.

Mr. Uganthar Reddy
Block 601, #06-03
Senja Road
Singapore - 670601

Mr. Prabhakar Chettiar
Block 927, #15-77
Hougang Street 91
Singapore - 530927

Please forward this message to all your friends and relatives around the world.

 

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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TOPIC OF DISCUSSION : SAI'S MESSAGE TO THE CHILDREN

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