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Mythology

Is it Inauspicious to Look at the Moon on Ganesh Chaturthi?

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Ganesh Chaturthi or Vinayak Chavithi is considered to be one of the biggest festivals in India. The festival is celebrated with a lot of enthusiasm, devotion and austerity. According to Vedic belief, the Lord Ganesha is considered as the symbol of wisdom, knowledge, fortune and prosperity. People worship Lord Ganesha before starting any important or auspicious work or event to ensure success in the same.

Many people believe that we should not look at the moon on Ganesh Chaturthi. The interesting story behind this In case you are not aware of the reason, read this interesting story below.

According to Vedic belief, it is said that the God Chandra, Moon, who is considered to be very handsome and proud of his looks, once tried to make fun of Lord Vighnaharta by doing mockery of his appearance. All these made the Lord Ganesha to punish Chandra, the moon to make him realize his fault and be polite and humble. Therefore, Lord Lambodara cursed Chandra saying that he will not be worshipped by anyone and if anyone will look at the Chandra or the moon, he has to face false allegations and may lose peace of mind.

By hearing this curse, Chandra got devastated and started worshiping Lord Ganesha along with other Gods to appease him. Finally, Lord Ganesha was pleased and relieved him from the curse but with a condition. So, he said people can look at the moon on any day except that day of ‘Bhadrapada Chaturthi’. If anyone dares to look the moon on that particular day, he will have to face the wrath of Lord Ganesha.

Since that day, ‘Bhadrapada Chaturthi’ is celebrated as Vinayak Chavithi or Ganesh Chaturthi. Anyone who looks at the moon on the very auspicious day of Bhadrapada Chaturthi even by mistake, it is advised to worship Lord Ganesha and observe the holy rituals and recite the story of Ganesh Chaturthi in order to get rid of the curse.

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Sonali Patnaik is majorly into secondary research and report writing. She is an avid reader and reads a variety of novels, a music lover and a movie buff. She also loves to travel and fond of cooking experiments. She expresses her views on various topics and does so through her well-researched articles.



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Ramayana Vs RamCharitManas: The Difference!

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Ramayana is one of the greatest Indian epics amongst all the Vedic scriptures. Most people use the words, Ramayana and RamCharitManas interchangeably. Although both the books describe the journey of Rama, the Lord Vishnu’s incarnate on Earth, only a few know that both the books are different versions presented by different authors in different eras.

In fact, there are many differences between Ramayana and RamCharitManas. Here are some of the important differences.

  1. Ramayana is written by sage Valmiki in Treta Yuga in the Sanskrit language. On the contrary, RamCharitManas was written by the great poet Goswami Tulsidas in Kaliyuga in the Awadhi language in the 15th century AD (1511–1623).
  2. The word Ramayana is comprised of two words Ram and Aayanam (Story), which means Ram’s story, while the word RamCharitManas is derived from three words Ram, Charita (good deeds) and Manas (lake) which mean Lake of good deeds of Ram.
  3. Ramayana is composed of seven chapters or Kandams, namely, Bala Kandam, Ayodhya Kandam, Aranya Kandam, Kishkinda Kandam, Sundara Kandam, Yuddha Kandam, and Uttara Kandam. RamCharitManas also consists of seven chapters; however, there is a difference that Tulsidas named the Yuddha Kandam as Lanka Kand.
  4. Ramayana has been written in a format of ‘Slokas’ while RamCharitManas has been described in ‘Chaupais’ format. Ramayana is considered as the original story of Lord Ram and his journey, while RamCharitManas is the retelling of the Ramayana in which Tulsidas has acknowledged Valmiki in the epic manuscript.
  5. According to Ramayana, King Dasaratha had 350 wives out of which only three were considered as his principal wives, namely, Kausalya, Kaikeyi, and Sumitra. However, RamCharitManas mentions the King had only three wives.
  6. Ramayana depicts Lord Hanuman as a human being who belongs to the Vanar tribe. Here, Vanar is a tribe living in the forest. The word Vanar was derived from words — Van (forest) and Nar (man). On the other hand, in RamCharitManas he is depicted as a monkey and ‘Vanar’ is refer to species of Monkeys.
  7. As per Ramayana King Janaka had never arranged Sita Swayamvar as a mass function. It is mentioned in Ramayana that whenever any mighty individual used to visit Janaka, he used to show them the Bow of Shiva or Shiva Dhanusha and asked them to lift it. Therefore, when Vishwamitra visited Janaka along with Rama and Lakshmana, Janaka showed them the bow and asked Lord Rama to lift the bow. To Janaka’s surprise, Rama lifted the bow and hence Janaka proposed Rama to marry Sita.

On the contrary, in RamCharitManas, a Sita Swayamvar was organized by King Janaka and there was a competition to lift the bow of Shiva and Sita would marry the person who could lift the bow without breaking it. Nobody could lift the bow except Rama. However, Rama lifted it but broke it in the process.

  1. Ramayana depicts the abduction of Sita was real. She was captured forcefully by Ravana and Rama rescued Sita and she was asked to prove her purity to the world by taking the Agni Pariksha. On the contrary, RamCharitManas stated that Sita was never kidnapped. However, Rama predicted the kidnapping of Sita and created a clone of Sita. The real Sita was sent to Agni Deva and the Agni Pariksha was just a way to exchange clone of Sita with real Sita.
  2. As per Ramayana, Ravana came to fight Rama on the battlefield twice. First, he came at the beginning of the war and was humiliated by Rama but left alive. The second time, he came at the end of the war and was killed by Rama. On the other hand, in RamCharitManas, Ravana came to the battlefield only once at the end of the war.
  3. In Ramayana, Rama is portrayed as “Maryada Purushottam” which means a man with exceptional virtues or the best of men with excellent conduct. However, in RamCharitManas, Rama is depicted as Supreme Being, the incarnation of God and possessed a divine touch in his deeds. His actions were depicted as the Lord’s righteous ways to destroy evils and establish Dharma.
  4. Ramayana ends when Rama completed the journey of his mortal body by drowning himself in the Saryu river after he was saddened by the absence of Sita and Lakshmana. Sita had disappeared into mother Earth and Lakshmana had drowned himself in the Saryu river. But RamCharitManas ended with the birth of the twin sons Lava and Kusha to Ram and Sita and there was no mention of the death of Lakshmana or How Sita disappeared.
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Essence of Shankh or Conch in Hinduism…

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Scientifically, conch is nothing but a shell of a tropical marine mollusk or large snail. However, in Vedic culture, a conch or Shankh holds a significant value. In Hinduism, the Shankh is considered as Lord Vishnu’s emblem and believed that Shanknaad or the vibrations that occur on blowing through the Shankh exterminate negative energy.

In Hindu mythology, it is mentioned that Lord Vishnu, in many of his avatars, blows through the Shankh or conch to destroy the negative power around the world. Therefore, the Shankh is considered to be Lord Vishnu’s sacred symbol and holds the highest significance in both Hinduism and Buddhism.

Shankh is considered to be Lord Vishnu’s sacred symbol and holds the highest significance in both Hinduism and Buddhism.

As per Vedic scriptures, there are two types of Shankh; one for blowing sound and another for worshiping purpose. It is also believed that one who blows into the Shankh regularly is protected against heart disease.

A Shankh, when kept at home, must be worshiped diligently by the family members and must be blown into at least twice a day in the morning and evening. Here are some Vastu tips that one must take care of while bringing home a Shankh.

  • If you are keen to bring Shankh to your home, then bring at least two and they must be kept in separate rooms.
  • The Shankh, used for blowing purposes must not be offered water or rituals or any of the religious chants or mantras. It must be placed on a yellow cloth.
  • The Shankh, used for worshiping purposes must be cleansed with milk or Gangajal or Panchaamrit and be draped in sacred white cloth.

Shankh or Conch

  • The Shankh for worshipping purpose must be placed above or at a high place of the one being used for blowing purpose.
  • The two Shankhs should not be used for similar purposes (either blowing or worshiping) in the same puja room or temple at home.
  • The Shankh must not be placed above the Shivling or should never touch the Shiv Pindi during any religious ritual.
  • The Shankh must not be used for offering water to either Lord Shiva or Lord Sun.
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Mythology

Draupadi: Ten Interesting facts!!!

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Draupadi is the most significant woman in the Hindu classic, Mahabharata.

As depicted in the Mahabharata, Draupadi was the daughter of Drupada, the king of Panchala, which is now known located somewhere in Bareilly. Drupada had been defeated by the Arjuna, on behalf of Guru Dronacharya. Latter, in order to gain revenge on Guru Dronacharya, Drupada performed a Putrakameshti yajna. From that sacrificial yajna kund, appeared a beautiful dark-skinned young woman Draupadi. When she emerged from the fire, a heavenly voice (aakaashvaani) said that she would bring about the destruction of the Kuruvansh.

Here are some interesting facts about Draupadi, the Paanchaali.

It is believed by some people that Draupadi, in her previous birth, was Indrasena the wife of great saint Moudgalya, who died in early age due to leprosy. In order to fulfill her own desires, Indrasena worshiped Lord Shiva and asked for a husband. However, she asked the same for five times in a rush.

There is another version of Mahabharata, where it is mentioned that Draupadi was a great devotee of Lord Shiva, and had always wished to marry someone with five qualities including Righteousness, Mighty, Archery Skills, Handsome and Tolerant. However, Lord Shiva misinterpreted her to wish and blessed her to have five husbands with each personality.

In South India, it is believed that Draupadi was an incarnation of Goddess Maha Kali, who was born to help Lord Krishna to abolish the arrogant Kauravas.

Draupadi agreed to become the wife of five Pandavas on one condition, i.e. she would never share her household with any other women, which means the Pandavas had no right to bring their other wives to Indraprastha.

Pandavas also decided that Draupadi would stay with each of the brothers for a year and then would move to next brother. This shrewd decision was taken to prevent distrust and to identify paternity of Draupadi’s children.

As agreed between Pandavas and Draupadi, only one brother was permissible to enter her chamber at a time and was supposed to keep his shoes outside as a mark of indication but one day, a dog took away Yudhishthira’s shoes then Draupadi cursed dogs by saying: “All the world will see you copulate in public, stripped of all shame.

Before Draupadi moved from one husband to another, she walked through fiery fire to recapture her purity and virginity.

Draupadi had one son each from each of the Pandava brothers. They were known as Uppanadavas.

Draupadi’s Vessel, which means her kitchen that, had an abundant stock of food. It was considered as a mark of a great homemaker and Draupadi was surely one. She never let anyone sleep empty stomach in her palace or those who came for alms.

Draupadi had always considered Lord Krishna as her true friend, Sakhaa. Lord Krishna was the only who came to her rescue whenever she had found herself in awful situations.

Draupadi was never responsible for the Mahabharata war, however, most of the people do believe that she was the one who provoked for the war. That is absolutely incorrect. Of course she had always encouraged Yudhishthir and Arjun to fight against wrong, however, the issue still remains debatable based on people’s perceptions.

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Sai Baba devotees donate in excess of 5 crores on Guru Purnima

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Sai Baba of Shridhi and donated currency
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Shirdi Sai Baba is considered world over as the last walking God on earth. He took salvation in 1919 in Shirdi, a small and modest village in Maharashtra. He was worshipped by over 1.8 lakh devotees on Guru Purnima festival with ardent Sai bhaktas thronging the historic temple in thousands from various parts of India. Some even visited him barefoot and the total donation amounted to INR 5.62 crores.
A “Jatha” of 1500 Sai devotees also arrived in Shirdi from Pune barefooted after having covered the long and arduous distance in several days. Such is the blind faith of ardent Sai devotees.
Sai Baba is considered as a God of miracles. He more than 175 years ago, while still, a child had visited the modest village of Shirdi in a marriage party. He finally settled there in a dilapidated mosque for his entire life. He helped the poor and all the sects irrespective of their caste and religion, he even cured them with His supernatural powers. Thus he always there to rescue the needy.
Sai Baba was considered as a God of miracles. He begged door to door leading a modest life in tatters. He was initially even stoned by naughty children of Shirdi.
It is said that after Baba started living in Shirdi,  his miraculous feats, gradually impressed the local inhabitants of the village. They gradually recognized his greatness and his supernatural powers and started worshipping him.
Once while begging for mustard oil for lighting lamps, he was refused oil by a local shopkeeper. After the shopkeeper even insulted Sai Baba, he returned to his mosque disappointed. It was the day of Ram Navmi and he had to light the earthen lamps in the mosque he lived in. As he had no oil, he poured water in all the earthen lamps and had them lighted.
Those present there were shocked to see the lamps lighted with water. Soon his miraculous feats spread to the nearby villages and people started thronging Shirdi for his obeisance, finally, according to him the status of God.
Today, after hundred years Shirdi Sai Baba Trust managing the historic Shirdi temple is the richest shrine in India. It has a total deposit of nearly INR 2400 crores, donated by Sai bhaktas from all over the world in Indian and foreign currencies. The donations also include gold, silver, diamonds and even lands.
According to sources, about  70000 devotees visit Sai Temple every day. The annual income of Shirdi Sai Baba Trust is Rs 700 crores.
About 3.5 lakh devotees visit the historic temple during festivals, as during the three days of Guru Purnima festival from 15th to 17th July. About INR 5.62 crores had been received as Guru Dakshina during these three days. Sai Baba Trust has a whopping Rs. 2330 crores deposit to date.
The Sai Sansthan has 500 crores with 443 kilograms Gold and 5368 kg silver annual donations. The trust has an annual income of INR 700 crores.
About 1.75  lakh devotees sought Baba’s darshan on Gurupurnima day. The total collection included Hundi of Rs. 2 crores 12 lakh, 1.7 crores on donation counter and 1 crore 8.49 lakh through foreign currency contributions.
The report says that about INR 2 crores are acknowledged as a donation from ardent Sai devotees from different parts of the country and globe. The major part of the donation collected is used for the construction of hospitals and modern Dharamshalalas in Shirdi. These donations are also used for meals etc at subsidized rates to lakhs of devotees visiting the historic temple.
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SAI BABA ! The last walking God on earth

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The Sai Baba Of Shirdhi who is considered to be the last walking God on earth and worshipped 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 only 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.

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Sai Baba: an embodiment of love, compassion, service to the poor and the hapless

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In chapter 9-26 of revered Bhagwat Gita Lord Krishna says to his devotees, “ Whoever offers to Me, with love or devotion , a leaf, a flower, a fruit or water that offering of love of the pure self-controlled man is willingly and readily accepted by Me.”Similarly , the incarnation of Lord Krishna and Vishnu Sai Baba of Shirdhi is also ambivalent and generous towards his devotees, particularly towards the ones who venerate at his feet every day and make the offering with total dedication and surrender. If we cast a glance at Him for a moment, He destroys the sorrow of our previous births and generously confers immense bliss on one and all and if He looks at us with grace, our bondage of Karma is immediately snapped away and we are led to complete and perfect happiness.

As per Hemad Pant, the author and Baba’s close confident and follower, vide chapter 22 of Sai Sad Charitra , Sai Baba’s everlasting divinity and blessings on his each and every follower without any distinction of stature, caste, creed or religion makes everybody so comfortably relieved from the incessant worries and complexities of life that they feel a sense of everlasting bliss and total security in their respective lives. Sai Baba in short is a quest jewel of the saints, the true people and devotees. We prostrate ourselves before and take refuge at the lotus feet of Sai Baba, Who besets all animate and inanimate things in the universe- Who pervades all creatures equally without any differentiation, to Whom all devotees are alike and Who knows not honor and dishonor, like or dislike. If we remember him with full dedication, honesty, devotion and surrender to HIM,

He fulfils all our wishes and makes us attain our goal by all means. How to meditate on Baba? This is a main question for those who are desirous to be his ardent followers and want to seek his valuable blessings. It’s a hard and true fact that no one has till date been able to fathom the nature or the form of Almighty. Even the Vedas and the thousand tongued Shesha are not able to describe it fully, the devotees also cannot know but only look at the form of Lord, for they know that, HIS FEET are the only refuge for ultimate solace and salvation. They know no other method of attaining the supreme goal of life except meditating on the Holy Feet.

Therefore meditate on Baba but let’s first see His Baba’s form. Look at Baba’s posture, how fine it is. He is peacefully sitting with His legs folded, the right leg held across the left knee. The fingers of His left hand are spread on the right foot. On the toe are spread His two fingers- the index and middle ones. By this posture Baba seems to say- if you want to see my true form, be egoless and most humble, and meditate on My toe through the opening between- index and middle fingers and then you will be able to see my light.
Similarly, now let’s turn to Baba’s life.

Shirdi has become a most significant place of pilgrimage for Sai Bhaktas who come here from all around the globe, on account of the fact that Sai Baba once lived there physically and is even present there today to bless us . People from all quarters began to flock there and both rich and the poor began to be benefitted in more ways than one. Who can describe Baba’s boundless love and His wonderful knowledge including His all pervasiveness? Blessed is he or she who could experience these. Sometimes Baba observed long silence called Maun Vrat which was in a way, His dissertation on Bramha, at other times;

He was Pure Consciousness-Bliss Incarnate, surrounded by His ardent devotees. Sometimes, He spoke in parables and at other times, indulged in wit and humour. At times He was quite peaceful and calm and at time he seemed badly enraged. Sometimes He gave His teachings in nutshell, say precisely while at other times he argued at length. Many a times He was direct. In this way He gave varied instructions to many, according to their requirements. Sai Baba’s life was therefore inscrutable, beyond the ken of our mind, intellect and speech. Our longing to see His face, to talk with Him and hear His Leelaas, was never satisfied; still we were overflowing with joy. We can gauge the showers of rain, capture the wind in the leather bag but who can measure His leelaas?

Now we deal here with one aspect of them viz how He anticipated or forestalled the calamities of His devotees and warned them in time.
Balasaheb Mirikar, son of Sardar Kakasaheb Mirikar was a Mamlatdar of Kopergaon. He was going on the tour of Chitali. On the way he came to Shirdi, to see Sai Baba. When he went to the Masjid and prostrated himself before Baba, the usual conversation, regarding health and other matters commenced, when Baba sounded a note of warning,’’ Do you know our DWARKJAMAYEE?’As Balasaheb did not understand, he kept quiet and Baba continued saying further, “This is our Dwarkamayee where you are sitting.” She wards off all dangers, ill conceived notions and anxieties of the children who sit in her lap.

The Masjid mai ( its presiding Diety) is very merciful , she is the mother of simple devotees whom she will save by all means in calamities. Once a person sits in Her lap, ALL HIS OR HER TROUBLES ARE OVER. He who rests in Her shade, gets bliss. Then Baba gave Him Udi and placed His hand on his head , with the intent to bless Him. When Bala Saheb was about to depart. He again said, “Do you know the “Lamba Baba”,( Long gentleman) viz. serpent?” And then, closing the left fist He brought it under the right elbow and moving His left arm lie the hood of a serpent, said” He is so terrible, but what can he do to the children of Dwarkamayee? When the Dwarkamayee ( its presiding Deity) protects, what can the serpent do?”
All who were present there were curious to know the meaning of all this and its reference to Mirikar, but none had the courage to ask Bab about all this.

Then Balasahe saluted Baba and left the Masjid with Shama. Baba called Shama back and asked him to accompany Balasaheb and enjoy the Chitali trip. Shama came to Balasaheb and told him that he would go with him, according to Baba’s wish. Balasaheb replied that he need not come, as it would be inconvenient to both of them. Shama immediately returned to Baba and told Him what Balasaheb said. Baba said,” Alright, do not go. We should mean well and do well. Whatever is destined to happen, will happen. In the meanwhile , Balasaheb thought it over what Baba had said again and calling Shama, asked him to accompany him. Then Shama went again to Baba and after taking His leave started with Balasaheb on the Tonga. They reached Chitali at 9P.M. and encamped in the Maruti Temple.

The office people had not come so they sat in the temple, talking and chitchatting. Balasaheb was sitting on the mat, reading the newspaper. His Uparani ( upper Dhotar) was spread across his waist and on it a snake was sitting unnoticed. It began to move with a hissing sound, which was heard by the peon sitting there. He got terrified and brought a lantern, saw the snake and raised the alarm,” serpent, serpent.” Balasaheb was badly terrified and frightened. He began to quiver. Shama too was shocked and stunned. Feeling badly feared he and others moved quietly and took sticks, clubs etc. in their hands. The snake, however slowly came down the waist and moved away from Balasaheb sending shivers down his spine. The snake was immediately done to death.

Thus this calamity, which was prophesized by Baba, was averted within no time and Balasahebs’s devotion in Baba confirmed. There are numerous other miracles of Baba in Sai Satcharitra that clearly show how Baba saved His devotees from calamities, danger and adverse situations by coming to their rescue as and when His devotees felt the need for the same by remembering Baba honestly and from the inner core of the pious heart.
SUNIL NEGI

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Mythology

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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Mythology

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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Mythology

Why do Hindus worship idols when God told us he is everywhere?

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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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Mythology

Lesser known facts about God Hanuman

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Do you know that God Hanuman created his own version of Ramayana?

Yes it is true that God Hanuman created his own version of Ramayana, wondering where then the answer is that he wrote Ramayana on walls of Himalayas with his nails. When the war between Rama and Raaavana was over he went to Himalayas to do Rama chanting and there he wrote Ramayana on the Himalayan walls when Maharishi Valmiki heard about it and he went to meet Hanuman in Himalayas he also spent 1000 years in reading the Ramayana written by Hanuman and even praised for his version of war. Maharishi also felt bit let down because he thought his version of Ramayana would become redundant once people read Hanuman’s version so great Hanuman erased it.

Another interesting fact about God Hanuman is that once, Narad Muni visited God Ram and provoked him against Hanuman. One day there was a gathering of wise man; Narad Muni asked Hanuman to greet all sages but not to greet Vishwamitra and when Hanuman did so, Vishwamitra complaint against him to Rama, asked him to give severe punishment and punish him to death. So Rama did not ignore his command and tied Hanuman and attacked him with arrows but all arrows targeted towards Hanuman failed to hurt him because he was continuously chanting name Rama.

As we all know that God Hanuman is immortal and were also present during Mahabharata he met Bhim and told him that they were brothers and helped him during the war.

In Sanskrit Hanuman actually means disfigured jaw it is a lesser known fact which everybody do not know about the favourite god.

Lord Hanuman is one of the most popular Gods because of his dedication towards God Rama and bravery stories and people are always excited to know more about him. If you have some more facts which are not known to everyone then you can also share them with us.

 

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