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Once Swami Vivekananda visited King of Alwar in present day Rajasthan. The king in an attempt to mock idol worship told Swamiji, “I’ve no faith in idol worship. How can one worship stone, wood and metal? I believe people are in illusion and just wasting time!”.
Swamiji smiled. He asked the king’s assistant to take down the picture of the king that was hanging on the wall. Although confused, the assistant did so. Then Swamiji ordered him, “Spit on the picture!”. The assistant was shocked and looked at both of them. Swami repeated again and again, becoming more stern each time. The king was growing angry and the assistant started trembling. Finally, he cried out, “How can I spit on this? This picture is of our beloved and respected king!”.Swamiji then told him, “The king is sitting in front of you in person. This picture is merely a paper – it does not speak, hear, think or move. But still you did not spit because you see a shadow of your king in it, Spitting on it was like spitting on the king itself.” The king looked at Swamiji and bowed down, clearly understanding what he was referring to.This is the essence of idol worshiping. God is everywhere, but people want to pray to Him, ask favors, offer food, tell stories, bathe Him, play with Him and do what they do in their lives. Creating a human-like idol creates an image of God as a companion, a guide, a friend, a protector, a giver, a fellow being and so on. An idol is just a concrete representation where they find Him. When I look into the eyes of an idol, I do not see stone or metal, but another pair of eyes looking affectionately at me, smiling.

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Tributes to Sai Baba/A true symbol of secular values and service to the poor/ 97th Salvation anniversary

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The Sai Baba Of Shirdhi who is considered to be the last walking God on earth and worshiped by billions around the globe always believed in simplicity and had no greed for any material gains but instead had only one objective in mind and that was service to the poor and needy and make them self sufficed by all means. For Sai Baba Guru is God and the one who surrenders to his or her Guru in totality is considered the true disciple who can ultimately reap the real fruits of the Guru’s blessings.The Guru will take care of such disciples, protect them and finally lead them to salvation. It should be complete and total surrender on the Guru’s feet with special emphasis on “total” and any doubt or mental reservation on the part of the disciple will not only be unproductive but will also render him as a non- achiever. Sai Baba who reigned as a spiritual leader, the greatest saints of all times finally became God who walked on earth by his infinite miracles for the welfare of the hapless, poor and needy including the lepers who not only became economically self reliant and got cured from the dreaded diseases but also achieved salvation by His grace and ever lasting divinity.

I honestly consider my good luck and feel it my proud privilege for having been able to compile articles on Sai Baba, the real incarnation of Lord Shiva and Vishnu Who not only provide me special potential to do so but also gives enough knowledge to be able to pen my inner feelings about Baba. Baba was and is so great, omnipresent and omniscient that storehouse of knowledge and senior journalist like Rangaswamy Parthasarthy has also written lot about HIM and shed special light on Baba’s karmas for the welfare and upliftment of the poorest sections of the society during His lifetime.Lot and lot has been written about Baba and His miraculous feats for the last hundred years which has not noly benefited billions of His ardent devotees world over to follow His most precious sermons and religious discourses and imbibe them within themselves for attaining purity of mind, heart and soul but Baba’s blessing and divinity has also given complete BLISS to them who pray in veneration at HIS pious feet in total surrender. Let’s therefore know about Baba’s actual existence as a HUMAN and his various feats and miracles during his lifetime in Shridhi where  he came as a fakir through a marriage party(Baraat), was teased by children and frowned upon by sceptically villagers initially and later on remained to reign as a spiritual leader thus finally becoming the most sought after and adoring spiritual leader of all times.
It is said that Sai Baba was five feet six inches tall, neither stout nor lean. His complexion was Golden yellow, his eyes bluish, which shone bright mysteriously in darkness. Indeed His eyes were the object of wonder to the devotees. His nostrils were prominent. At the time when Sai Shradhanandji, who has given the above description of Baba in the book titled, God Who Walked On Earth- The Life and Times of Shridhi Sai Baba,authered by Mr. Rangachari, Sai Baba had some of His teeth missing and the rest were not pure white, rather pale.He never brushed His teeth but only rinsed His mouth with a little water every morning. He did not drink tea but did not ask His devotees to abstain from them. He never disclosed anyone how and when He got into the habit of smoking a pipe. He always used the same clay pipe although devotees often offered Him many pipes which he did not use but stocked them in the hollow portion of the Masjid Wall.
The piece of cloth tied around His head called Kafni was very rarely changed and never washed. Whenever Sai Baba decided to change His Kafni, He sent for the local tailor and said, Get me a Kafni,. When it was given to Him He always paid the tailor more than its worth. Left to Himself Baba spoke very little. He always preferred to be a silent spectator than to be talkative. He was more at the receiving end, always chanting God’s name within Himself. Baba usually remained calm and quite and spoke only when absolutely necessary. He never laughed loudly but smiled quietly. Whenever a devotee approached to Him for Darshan, He glanced at him. Sometimes He did not even do that. He adored children very much and whenever got the opportunity, played with them merrily. He never sat leaning against the wall in the mosque. Even when he sat with His legs outstretched, He always sat a few feet away from the wall. He never slept during the day and seldom visited any temple in Shridhi during his lifetime, may be because since He Himself was the God in Himself, the real an true incarnation of Lord Shiva,Rama, and Vishnu.
Sai Baba used to usually get His head shaved. Marthand son of Mhalsapati said that on certain occassions Baba sent for a barber, Balanari and had His head shaved completely. After the haircut Baba used to put His hand into His pocket and pay the barber whatever came to his hands. But it was always much in excess of the normal payment for a shave. Baba maintained a small beard. He had a wide forehead and always wore a plain Kafni.
The clay pipe was often renewed by His devotees who used to encircle Him whenever the pipe smoking session was in process by passing the rustic pipe to each other one by one. Baba never had any reservation of sharing the pipe though it was also smoked by one of the lepers’.In one of the notings in his diary by his devotee Kharparde, it is revealed thus,” Today I have shampooed the legs of Sai Baba. The softness of His limbs is wonderful. This example shows how privileged His devotees felt by washing his legs”.
Similarly a woman devotee of Baba has also recorded her emotions and impressions about Baba’s personality,:” There was such power and penetration in His glance that none could continue to look into His eyes.One felt that Sai Baba was reading Him or her mind through and through. Soon one lowered one’s eyes and bowed to Him. One felt that He was not only in one’s heart but in every atom of one’s body. A few words or a gesture would reveal that Baba knew all about everything else. There was nothing else to do for one except to submit trustfully and to surrender to Him in totality. And then He was to look after every minute detail and guide one safely through every turn and vicissitude of life. He was in real sense an Antaryami, call Him God or Satpurush or a walking humanitarian on earth born for the welfare and well being for the humanity around the globe.
Baba was so reserve from within and completely devoted to GOD that His words were always short, limited, pithy,deep, full of meaning and well balanced. He once said,” Though I have become a fakir, have no house, wife and though devoid of all the material gains, I have stayed at one place, the inevitable Maya teases me often. Though I forget myself, I cannot forget her. She envelopes me. This maya teases God Brahma and others as well then what to speak of a poor fakir like me? Hence according to Baba, those who take refuge in Lord will definitely be freed from the clutches of Maya with His grace.
An ardent devotee of Baba said : many saints went into a trance or samadhi, forgetting their body and they would display their supernatural powers and knowledge through such feats. But in case of Sai Baba He never had to go into a trance to achieve anything or reach any higher position. As Baba was always exercising a double consciousness every moment , the ego called Sai Baba and the antaryami, superseding all egos and finally resting in the Lord, the Parmatma. Baba was always in the state of exercising and manifesting the powers and features of both states of consciousness. The devotee says: When I sit in His presence I always forget my pain, nay,the body itself with all its mundane concerns and anxieties. Hours would pass and I would be in a blissful condition unconscious of the time passing. He was all in all for us and we could never think of His having limitations.
One notable instance of Baba’s miracle was when a portion of the mosque which was in a very dilapidated state, started to crumble with a loud noise while Baba and His devotees were taking the afternoon meals,”
On seeing this, Baba lifted his hands in anger and said loudly: SAHA, SAHAR,” meaning wait, wait. And suddenly the noise stopped and after the meal was finished and everyone came out comfortably, a big portion of the dilapidated mosque came down with a shattering noise and huge bang, exactly at the place where Baba and his devotees were having the lunch. Lateron the renovation work of mosque was taken and the dilapidated mosque repaired, forthwith.Similarly Baba used to used His intestines regularly by vomiting them out first and after adequately cleaning them would swallow them again. This miraculous feat is also something never witnessed anywhere in the world. Such supernatural power was He. There are hundreds and thousands of such instances that prove beyond doubt that Sai Baba of Shridhi was not an ordinary saint or a spiritual leader but a God in Him self who till today is providing overall bliss, all round progress and prosperity to billions and billions of his devotees around the globe with His blessings and divinity.OM SAI RAM.
SUNIL NEGI

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God who walked, talked and served the poor, needy, hapless and the lepers on this earth

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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

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Know your best food vis-a-vis Zodiac sign….

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Yess, your sign can guide you on your food habits. And why not? — If your zodiac sign can impact on your personality traits and compatibility score then why not it also determine which foods are best for you? I looked through few websites, and here presenting a compilation of all that I found.

The twelve zodiac signs are grouped into four elements—fire, earth, air and water. Below are the zodiac sings and their traits according to element categories along with their ‘should-be-food-habits’

Fire Signs: Aries, Leo, Sagittarius

Same as fire, the signs under this category are dynamic, passionate, and temperamental. As we all know, fire can provide us warmth, or it can lead to destruction, similarly all fire signs (Aries, Leo and Sagittarius) should be taken care and handled carefully.

Food mantra: Don’t Burn Yourself Out

Aries

Eat: They should eat food that will keep their body cool and soothe their kidneys and liver. Best food list includes brown rice, fruit juices, bananas, olives, onions, tomatoes, lettuce, cucumbers, spinach, cauliflower,  radishes, beans, broccoli, lentils, walnuts, pumpkin, figs, garlic, dried apricots and mustard.

Avoid: Aries people are prone to heartburn and indigestion issues. So, they should avoid hot and spicy foods. They should also stay away from too much of salt and alcohol.

Leo

Eat: Leos always need plenty of carbs to energize their hectic lives. So, a low or no carb diet is ruled out. Their nervous systems and hearts functions best when healthy food items are added into their list including rice, whole grains, citrus fruits, peaches, apples, root vegetables (e.g., carrots, potatoes and radishes), broccoli, spinach, bitter greens (e.g., mustard greens and kale), nuts, sunflower seeds, almonds and figs.

Avoid: People of this zodiac sign are very prone to heart risks, hypertension and back pain. Generally, they are frequent sufferer of migraines and headache. So, they should avoid fatty dairy products and stay away from spicy food.

Sagittarius

Eat: Sagittarians they are fond of chocolates, sugar and sauces. They should avoid overeating and eat food that supports their liver. Best eatables include high protein diet with beets, plums, tomatoes, chicken and fish. Additionally, whole-grain cereals, whole grains, pears, oranges, apples, strawberries, root vegetables including  potatoes, carrots and radishes, onions, olives, figs, and garlic.

Avoid: Owing to their tendency of overeating and overdrinking, Sagittarians often suffer from digestive disorders, high blood pressure and obesity. It is suggested to avoid refined sugar, spicy food, sweets and alcohol.

 

Air Signs: Gemini, Libra, Aquarius

Air signs signify ideas, action, and motion. They are the winds of change i.e when a strong gust of air hits these people, they can’t help but move. Air signs bring a breath of fresh air when things start to get stale. Like the air, they are beyond your reach. Although, being with them is always an adventure.

Food mantra: Go Nuts

Gemini

Eat: Geminians should eat foods that support their nervous system and lungs. So, they should eat green beans, plums, peaches, spinach, shellfish, broiled fish, and wild rice to maintain their nerves in order. Additionally, they should eat oranges, grapefruit, grape juice, raisins, apples, lettuce, cauliflower, spinach, carrots, celery, tomatoes, vegan yogurt, almonds, cayenne, garlic, and ginger.

Avoid: Generally, they are fond of coffees and colas, which is actually worst thing for them. They should Coffee, root vegetables (e.g. potatoes and radishes), yeasty foods, and refined sugar

Libra

Eat: Libra people need to have foods that prevent mood swings and balance their nervous system. They should maintain their blood pressure levels, for which they need to follow a high alkaline vegetarian diet which includes corn, peas, spinach, almonds, raisins, brown rice and oatmeal. They also need Omega 3 acids in their body, for which they also need to add seafood to their diet. Other food items include apples, grapes, strawberries, raisins, steamed vegetables, tomatoes, nondairy cheeses, vegan yogurt, nuts, and almonds

Avoid: They should avoid coffee and alcohol. They should also rule out carbonated beverages, yeasty foods, and refined sugar from their diet.

Aquarius

Eat: The element air that rules Aquarians also supports the circulatory system. So, Aquarians should keep their blood sugar levels balanced by consuming lobster tuna, ocean fish, corn, spinach, walnuts, almonds and pears. They should also eat apples, oranges, steamed vegetables, cabbage, celery, carrots, tomatoes, broccoli, soy yogurt, dates, figs, cayenne, garlic, ginger, and protein bars.

Avoid: Aquarians are fond of cakes and colas but these are the worst thing for them. They should stay away from coffee, yeasty foods, and refined sugar.

Water Signs: Cancer, Scorpio Pisces

Water signs are as mystifying as the oceans. They are emotional, intuitive and ultra-sensitive. Just like water, they are refreshing and at the same time they have the power to drown you in their depths. These signs often possess borderline-psychic intuition and intense dreams. Water either dries up or disappears if not kept in a container, similarly people of this sign need security.

Food mantra: Stay away from Oil

Cancer

Eat: Cancerians always need a digestive support so they should avoid foods that cause bloating. They should eat foods that are high in calcium such as egg yolks, oysters, yogurts, and watercress. Additionally, they should consume whole-grain rye, wheat, oats, rice, steamed vegetables, fruits, bananas, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, beets, tomatoes, cucumbers pumpkins, beans, vegan yogurt, seaweed, and natural sugars.

Avoid: They are fond of alcohol and sugar, but these are the worst things as these boost weight gains and develop galls stones. Cancer zodiac sign people should also avoid oily foods, salt, sweets and specifically refined sugar.

Scorpio

Eat: Scorpions should drink at least eight glasses of water a day to stay healthy. They are fond of sexy foods or foods with zinc and healthy cholesterol including snails, oysters, avocados and figs. They can balance their mood swings by consuming cottage cheese, black cherries, onions, parsnips, watercress and asparagus. They should also add fruits, bananas, coconut, steamed vegetables, green salads, leeks, cauliflower, radishes, tomatoes, cucumbers, beets, beans, lentils, and almonds to their diet.

Avoid: Scorpions should stay away from alcohol. They should also avoid greasy and oily foods, salt, sweets, yeasty foods items and refined sugar.

Pisces

Eat: Piscean ruled by the element of Water, should eat foods that support in well functioning of their liver, blood and brain. They should eat foods rich in protein and iron such as lean beef, egg yolks, lamb, oysters, barley, whole-grain cereals, dried beans, beet tops, onions, spinach, lettuce, dates and raisins.

Avoid: They have a habit of overeating or overdrinking while socializing. It is suggested to for them to stay away from coffee, yeasty foods, asparagus, oily foods, salt, sweets, and refined sugar.

Earth Signs: Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn

Earth signs are the ‘grounded’ people on the planet. These people bring us down to earth as well as make us realize to start with a concrete foundation. People with this signs are slow and steady and loyal. They stand by their people through hard times. On good days, they are sensible and at worst days they can be materialistic or too focused on the surface of things to dig into the depths.

Food mantra: Keep Things Light

Taurus

Eat: Taurus natives need to eat food that will strengthen their thyroid. They should always season their food with iodized salt. Celery can be a good snack for them. They also should consume foods that prevent diabetes and weight gain, like cranberries, horseradish, and Swiss chard. Other food items include asparagus, cauliflower, beets, cucumbers, onions, spinach, pumpkin, beans and nuts.

Avoid: They should avoid rich and heavy foods, specifically high carb foods.

Virgo

Eat: Virgos should eat foods that support their lower intestines and nervous system. They should also consume foods rich in fiber and Omega fats to support their busy brains. These foods include eggs, avocadoes and canned fish as well as fresh seafood. Aditionally, they should consume whole grains and cereals, oats, fruit salads, fruit juices, lemon juice, bananas, oranges, leafy greens, vegetables with spices, sprouts, soups, teas, and almonds.

Avoid: Virgos should remove dairy products such as milk and ice cream from the diet plan. They should also stay away from rich and heavy foods specifically chocolate items.

Capricorn

Eat: Capricorns need to strengthen their bones and teeth. For this, they should eat calcium rich foods like spinach, oranges, kale, lemons, corn, peas, oats, whole wheat, and brown rice. Also fresh raw salad, fresh fruits and vegetables, lean protein, fish and eggs should be added in their diet. Additionally, they should consume cabbage, potatoes, sprouts, soups, teas, peanuts, figs, and flaxseeds

Avoid: Capricorns should stay away from rich and heavy foods, spicy foods, and chocolates.

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