Adored by billions worldover -Sai Baba.
The incredible saint of His time and adored by the billions around the globe as the undisputed God who walked , talked and served the poorest of the poor on this earth once, attained Samadhi on October 15th 1918 on the pious Day of Vijaydashmi at his most adored abode called Dwarka Maayi in Shirdhi, Maharashtra. Sai Babal’s miraculous deeds, leelaas and magical ways to genuinely impress his devotees are innumerous and hunderds of books have been authored by his ardent desciples to disseminate valuable informations, developments and happening during His life time so that his followers can remember Baba more reverrently and with immense ammount of devotion and dedication. Sai Baba of Shirdhi was such a phenomenal personality, an unparalleled saint and historic legend that eminent writer who had been in journalism for more than 40 years viz. Mr. Rangaswamy Parthasarthi , a committed Sai devotee has authored an excellent book on Sai Baba’s life in the year 1996, highlighting various facets of Baba’s multidimensional personality and detailed significance of His most valuable and precious teachings. In this article I would like to describe few miracles of Sai Baba written by Mr. Rangachari in one of the chapters of his pious book titled God who once walked on earth. The author has very nicely and ably portrayed certain incidents of Baba’s magical miracles which had not only surprised his devotees but compelled them to consider Baba as the ultimate God. This incident refers to the day when Sai Baba breathed His last and attained Samadhi. Sai Baba breathed his last on 15th October 1918 leaning on the shoulders of a devotee who did not realise that Baba has shed his mortal coil until few minutes later. It was the second time Baba has died, apparently this time for good. He had left the body once before in 1886 and like the Resurrection of Christ returned three days after making everybody in and around Shridhi shocked about this unbelievable event. However, while Christ sacrificed his life on the cross, Baba left the body voluntarily on his own, after assuring his devotees that he’ll definitely come back.
The story of this unbelievable but the factual incident was expressed to his son, Martand, by Mahalsapathy. According to Martand who recorded the episode in his memoirs of his father, one day in 1886 Baba came to Mahalsapathy and said,” Arre Bhagat,( as Baba used to call him), I am going to Allah. You had better guard this body for three days. If I return thereafter, I will get into the body for sure. If I don not you may thereafter have the body interred in that place”( pointing to the place near the neem tree where he used to meditate). Baba then reclined on Mhalsapathy’s shoulders and soon gave up breathing i.e. ceased to breathe. Body heat dissappeared and the colour of the body turned livid. Baba was dead. He was no more.
Soon the news spread like a wild fire and the village officials and the police arrived at the mosque, the Dwarkamayee. An inquest was held and Baba was certified officially dead. The police asked Mahalsapathy to bury the body as it should not remain in the mosque. Mahalsapathy told them what Baba has said him and added that he would wait for another three days as instructed by Baba, come what may. The police failed to persuade him to change his mind. He told them that Baba was a yogi with womderful and exceptional powers and it was possible for him to reappear alive in three days. Mahalsapathy won his point and he was allowed to retain the body which he protected with the help of other devotees.
After three days they noticed that suddenly a finger of Baba’s body moved, then his eyes opened. The next minute Baba mysteriously rose up and sat in his usual way and looked around. The resurrection was complete and Baba was back among his devotees, alive and kicking. For the last three days of Baba’s death the residents of Shirdhi has not taken their meals and were regularly praying to God for Baba’s reappearence in the physical form, which ultimately happened to the utter surprise and shock of everyone present there. To the end of His life, therafter, Baba never spoke of this incident nor does it appear that any devotee questioned him ever about it. The devotees must have taken it for granted. For anythng was possible for the saint of Baba’s stature and unique capabilities. What is surprising is that it did not obviousy produce any reaction amongst the government officials, both at the ;lower and the higher levels. The fact of Baba’s death must have gone into the village records but was it changed when Baba returned to life physically? Official apathy and the lack of curiosity was in line with the spirit of the times when people led the life of poverty and misery not questioning anything. But we, living in a scientific age, have to ask the question, how did he do it, why did he do it? Where was he in those three days? And finally, why and how did he come back? A dead body gets disintegrated and decayed within a matter of hours and begins to stink but in the case of Baba his body was well preserved and in good condition when life returned to it. This is a miracle which we have read in the Puranasand mythologies but that it happened in real life in the presence of reliable witneses is hard to believe but an inescapable fact. The questions will remain unanswered like so many other curious questions about Baba’s life.
Baba usually used a particular phrase to describe Death. He called it,” the crossing of the frontier”. When one of his deciple Reghe’s child died and his wife became inconsolable and Rege had the dead child on his lap, Baba appeared before him and asked, “Do you want me or a dead child? If you want me to revive the child, I will, but then you will have me no more with you. If you do not want it to be revived you will have many more children in the due course.” Rege later said he told Baba that he wanted HIM. ” Then do not grieve, ” said Baba and disappeared.
Baba did revive a dead person on two occassions. The first was during his stay with his guru, Venkasu, when a disgruntled disciple who tried to harm the Guru and Baba himself fell dead and the other desciples pleaded with the guru to revive him. The guru said he had transferred all his powers to the young Baba and it was for him to revive the dead man. The desciple then prayed to Sai Baba , who uttering his guru’s name touched the man’s body and it surprisingly came to life. On the other occassion, Malanbai, the daughter of one DR Joshi Devgaonkar, died of tuberculosis, as during those days there was no medical treatment for this desease and was considered as one of the most untouchable and contagious , even worst then leprosy. Just before her sad end the girl had asked her parents to be taken to Shirdi and placed before Sai Baba. Baba asked her to lie down on the balanket and take nothing but water. She carefully followed these instructions but unfortunately after a week she died early in the morning. Baba was then in the chavdi and for the first time he did not leave the chavdi though it was past 8.00 AM. The girls parent with a most distressed and heavy heart were making necessary preparations to remove the body for the funeral when suddenly they saw that Malanbai was breathing. She then opened her eyes and looked around. Then she said under curiosity that A black person was carrying her away. She being very frightened cried out for Sai Baba’s help. Baba thereafter took out his stick and gave that blackman (Yamraaj) a severe beating. He snatched me away from him and carried me to the chavdi.” She had not seen the chavadi before but gave the correct description of it. Just at this time Baba left the chawdi bawling out and stamping the ground with His stick, He came to Dikshit’s house where the girl’s body had been kept.
There are several other instances that surprise each and every Sai devotee of Baba’s extraordinary feats, miracles. magical acts and his immense power of bringing the dead to life . He is in true sense a true and real incarnation of Lord Shiva, Ram, Krishna and Lord Vishnu. Sai Baba’s blessings and divinity lead everyone to the real path of ultimate salvation. I think myself extremely lucky to be able to contribute my bit in His Lordships service by compiling articles and tits and pieces to disseminate Baba’s valuable sermons and actual happennings to the masses through Sai Sagar. Blessed are those who are lucky to be in Sai Baba’s service and in the service of the humanity at His behest. Lets end this by What Sai baba said once
Mombatti jalti hai to dhire-dhire galti rehati hai aur ek din kahtam ho jaati
ussi tarah ye matti ka tan bhi karam karte hue ek na ek din khatam ho jayega.
iss ke prrati moh karna vyarth hai isliye karam karo warna ye zivan bekar ho jayega
agar mombatti sahi jagha jalayi jaye yani andhere me roshni karne hetu to ye sarthak hai
agar wohi mombatti suraj ke tej pakash me jalye to uska jalna vayarth hai
iss deh ko bhi sahi karmo me lagaye,warna sab khaatam ho jayega.
By Sunil Negi