The Author’s Note
Many saints and noble personalities are born on this Mother Earth. English poet Wordsworth describes them as ‘Modest Violets’. Many beautiful, fragrant and superlative flowers bloom and are destined to the dust. It is Nature’s course. Very few of them leave their fragrance behind. Lord’s creation is abysmal and amazing. He has given intelligence and voice to humans. These are the two divine gifts for which the human race is indebted to Him forever. How astonishing it is that a person stays in a small remote place like Shirdi and becomes famous worldwide.
Jivas admire the Leelas of saints or great men. Their dicta and axioms become guidelines for those aspiring for liberation. Because of their darshan, wickedness of mind is washed off and mind inclines towards God, starts loving God and yearns for God. Saints have the power to transform human minds. They themselves are beyond body and mind. Doing righteous actions, being compassionate they are tuned to the self and immersed in bliss. As the saints are approachable and give feeling of nearness they become dear to humans. Therefore, there is no difference between God and saints. Even if saints leave their body and go out of sight, they are near to the devotees. Whenever a devotee gives Him a fervent call He is always there to help him. What is needed is devotion and emotion (Bhakti and Bhava).
Bhava does not mean ‘superimposition of feelings’. If a person says, “I do not know whether God exists or not; still I have devotion for Him!” This only indicates the attitude of the person who thinks as if he is obliging God and Saints, by his so called devotion. Bhava includes surrender. I, the author of this book, Dr. Keshav B. Gawankar, have written the book spontaneously as per Baba’s inspiration. I cannot claim that the contents are mine. I have rewritten the same what our saints have already mentioned. Even then, I am aware that the book is not free of mistakes. Because I am not a litterateur; and I do not have the intellect to be so. I do not have a leisure time too. So, whatever mistakes readers find are because of my own shortfalls and deficiencies.
Baba’s devout devotees, Anant Ganpat Kharade and Dattatraya Devrav Chavan, insisted that I write this biography of Baba. It is with their love and Baba’s inspiration that this book has taken shape. Pandit Padmanabh Shastri Palaye carefully went through the manuscript and corrected where necessary. Baba wanted me to refer many books and I followed Him. The delay in printing is caused by this reason.
List of the books I (the author) referred to is given below.
(1) Sakharam Charitra-Mate.
(2) Sri Dnyaneshwari.
(4) Sri Nath-Bhagwat
(7) MouniMaharaj Charitra (8) AkkalkotSwami Charitra
(9) Old issues of the periodical “Sri Sai Leela”
Many Sai devotees helped me in writin the book by narrating the experiences of Sai Leelas at different times. I am obliged and extend gratitude to them. A few names are given here.
- Tatya Ganpati KotePatil
- Yashwant Janardan Galwankar
- Madhav Balwant Deshpande (Shama)
- Raghuvir Bhaskar Purandare
- Sakharam Balwant Dhumal
- Ganesh Govind Narke
- Laxmibai Shinde
- Nanumama Pujari
I am grateful to all others who have contributed for the completion of the book. Some of them are Tulshiram Dixit, Ram Dixit, Doulatmastar Jyoti, Ramanlal Patel, Vasudeo Narayan Desai and finally Pandit Padmanabh Shastri, who has corrected the manuscript and written the foreword for the book.
In 1954, Baba inspired me to write my first book “Shiladhi”. And now He has got this book completed by me. Sri Sai Krishna appeared in Shirdi and there sprang a stream of love and precept of knowledge. It was a feast of ambrosia. I have tried to collect it and pour it in this book. May the contents quench your thirst and calm you.
I started writing this book on 14 May 1964 (Akshaya Trutiya) Twenty-one chapters were completed on 20 January 1965. Palaye Shastri checked those 21 chapters and wrote the poem. On 2nd January 1965 Baba commanded me in dream to write the next four chapters and that way the writing came to a stop after completion of twenty-five chapters.
I pray to God Sai Baba to be compassionate towards all who are suffering. restless and trying to buoy up in the sea of the ‘Sansara’ (world). May SAI GOD show them the way to eternal peace.
In Humble Service of Bhagwat Dharma,
Dr. Keshav Bhagwant Gawankar.
© Author – Dr. Keshav Bhagwant Gavankar (Annasahib Gavankar) – Explicit Rights To Publish To Shirdi Sai Baba Books.com (Member of SaiYugNetwork.com)