|Chapter No.||Part No.||Content of the Chapter|
|NA||NA||Introduction (Preface, Foreword, A Devotee Speaks and A Thought)|
|Chapter 1||Part 1||In Moments of Ecstasy|
|Chapter 1||Part 2||In Moments of Ecstasy|
|Chapter 1||Part 3||In Moments of Ecstasy|
|Chapter 1||Part 4||In Moments of Ecstasy|
When the peace within is established deep into me and my whole being is quietened, in those moments of ecstatic silence, I and my Sai become one and the self in me gets wrapped in the thin layers of peaceful silence of its consciousness.
O’ the ‘I’ in me! Why do you keep on wandering hither and thither unnecessarily in quest of your Sai? Sometimes you seek him in temples, sometimes in high sounding ‘Mehfils’ (high class gatherings) and sometimes in sumptuous ‘Bhandaras’. Do you think you shall find your Sai therein? Have you ever peeped into your own heart? If you haven’t found him there, you shall not be able to find him elsewhere. And when you have succeeded in installing him in your heart, you shall see him all around you and then you shall have no need to go anywhere else in quest of him. There was a time when one had to take recourse to go to caves in mountains to seek him; bathe in the pure waters of the Ganges; undertake hard penances; but in today’s age, Sai has taken ‘Avtar’ on earth and shown an extremely easy way to reach him. You are extremely lucky as you have now no need to undergo hard labours and if you ask me truly: Your Sai is waiting for you, hoping that my child shall come and seek refuge in me, surrender to me heart and soul and collect the wealth of ‘Aatmanand’ lying scattered all around me. In ‘Treta Yuga’ in the form of Ram, in ‘Dwapar’ in the form of Krishna, it is I alone who had descended on earth and it is in my various forms only that the people have been worshipping me all through the ages as Siva, Vishnu, Ram, Krishna, Christ, Mohammad, Guru Nanak, Mahavir, Buddha, etc. They are all my form alone.
Related: Scribblings of A Shirdi Sai Devotee
I wish to see my funeral pyre set afire, With my own eyes And have the feel What all illusions Had I been nursing in life? The pyres of others burning I have seen a lot, The joy of seeing one’s own pyre burning Is an experience of sorts. It seems all my life I have spent in illusions Even death is in itself an illusion When I have to be born again, Then what is it that is burning in front? That which I adored yesterday What was it? All my desires are burning And so are burning all my dreams I am a mere spectator Watching the ongoing game of life and death
I have always adored you O’ my Deva, ever since you came into my life. In the beginning you gave me whatever I demanded. Then a stage came when you gave me what you considered appropriate for me. Never did you fail me. Surely and certainly you are taking me forward and if I am mistaken not, as I grow in age, towards the state when desires seem to be dropping off and cease to have a place in life. In fact, nothing appears to be left for me to ask for – not even ‘Mukti’ (Liberation), which lies completely in your domain and to attain which the humans invariably aspire also I care not. As the desires decrease, the level of joy my ‘Aatma’ experiences grows. Today wants have lost all significance to me. A sea of ‘Aatmic Anand’ seems to be flowing all around me, O’ my Deva.
Blessed is the day Baba chose to take me in His ‘Sharan’ and blessed is the ‘Aatma’ who introduced me to him, although that ‘Aatma’ merged in Baba on the Vijay Dashmi day merely two years later – the day which Baba himself had chosen to give up His mortal coil on earth. Life assumed to me a new meaning. It had found a new goal of life. My whole thinking, the mode of my life and living, my expectations from life, my external bearing all changed. The journey on the path of Baba started with some soul stirring experiences. And today, almost 50 years hence, when I look back on this whole drama of having lived with my Baba, my soul experiences a great satisfaction for having lived a meaningful life. Memories which could be termed sour have all turned into sweet as today I have understood that both sweet and sour are His. Never for a moment have I felt that Baba has forsaken me. My ears have heard both – the sky rocketing praises of the self in me as also the abuses of the order which should blush the listeners. The ego might have got bloated for a few moments listening to praises and felt anguished listening to abuses; my Sai has taken no time to bring me back to the state when both have failed to affect the soul within. And today, when I am sitting ready to merge in him, the ‘I’ in me seems to be unconcerned with all that has happened during the last 50 years. I have no regrets, no remorses, no feeling of guilt or any achievements on the path of Sai bhakti, no anguishes are left in me and most of all no expectations – not even the expectation of attaining ‘Mukti’ which has been placed all through the ages as the goal of life. I have an innate feeling of leaving all such botherations, attainments or achievements – if you like to call them so, to my Baba who has never even for a moment seemed to have forsaken me ever since he has caught hold of my hands. Even today the feeling of peace, of serenity, of quietude and of fulfillment and bliss seems to be encircling my whole being. One may call it by any name he likes. This is all the ‘Karamaat’ (करामात), the Grace of my Sai who while in body form on this earth had proclaimed: “Never shall I forsake my devotee”.
The whole of my life I have spent talking aimlessly. Baba, now quieten me so that I may start looking inside me instead of outside as I have been doing thus far. Baba, I have been made to understand all through my life that the ocean of Sat-Chit-Aanand is floating within everyone of us, in which every soul has of necessity to take a dip without which the attainment of the goal of ‘Mukti’ is not possible. Baba! May I ask you a question? Even while talking without purpose also, the ‘Aatmic Anand’ which my soul has experienced and which has been poured out on paper in the form of words, is this all a myth? Is it only my delusion pure and simple? Whatever it is, you know better. My Baba! My soul is now desirous of having a complete sense of fulfillment. It now needs to be perfectly quiet. Allow it to enter into its inner chambers and get lost in itself – where there should be nothing left of my individuality; even my existence should fade away. While scribbling these words, my ‘Aatma’ is experiencing ‘Parmanand’. And in this state of mind, I feel as though my Sai has bestowed on me the kingdom of the world, how otherwise in this severe cold weather sitting on my bed with pillows on the back, gazing at Him, could I have this feeling within my inner soul. Baba who could be more fortunate than ‘I’, who has left behind all his worries, all his desires, all his feelings of attainment and if anything is left, it is self absorption without any worries, where only ‘I’ and ‘you’ remain and remain the currents of ‘Aatmic Anand’ floating around me. Where there is neither any unhappiness, nor happiness, not even hatred for anyone. If there is anything, it is only a deep ocean of love and the waves arising therein are shedding bliss. It seems that the whole universe has got absorbed within me. Neither do I exist nor anything else. It is only bliss reigning all around. Today in this advanced age of mine, whenever a feeling of helplessness overtakes me and the thought arises, who would now provide me help? A clear voice from within my heart pours into my ears: O’ you fool! Haven’t you experienced all your life that whenever you have felt helpless at any turning of life, a hand has always appeared from the invisible, lifted you up and showing the way, has disappeared into thin air. Today while having reached the end of the journey of life, you feel helpless; I ask you a simple question: Have you till today been able to understand me? Have you been able to reach near about me? Aren’t all your assertions to have understood me, merely hollow? Peep within you and think over, haven’t I rushed to your help in all difficult situations? Do you really think that today when you are becoming helpless, I shall leave you in the lurch? O’ you fool! Try to overcome this weakness of yours while there is some time left with you. For all times to come get absorbed in me and experience the joy of ‘Aatmanand’. Have complete faith that never shall I leave my children in midstream who have surrendered to me birth after birth. “A son may turn way-ward but a mother can never act against the interests of her son”.
“My eyes shed tears day and night, Why hasn’t my Sai come? My heart is filled with agony, O’ my Baba! Why don’t you take pity on me?”
Sai I accept that I don’t perhaps carry that yearning in my heart, which may compel you to come to me. But my Baba, I am what you have made me. If you haven’t filled my heart with more yearning for you, how could I be blamed for it? Baba whether I am good or bad, foolish or wise, nothing is in my hands. When I have surrendered to you heart and soul, the responsibility to lift me up, to carry me forward to my destination, now becomes yours. My Baba you have made my ‘Aatma’ to wear the sheath of body and till such time as you wish, I shall have to continue wearing it, but I beseech you with utmost humility, while residing in the body form, kindly do give my ‘aatma’ the feeling of your nearness at every moment. I may be lost in you all the time. In whatever work I may be engaged in, the fragrance of your bhakti should keep on emanating from my existence. My Baba! Some ask for wealth from you, some progeny, some honour and prestige, some the happiness of body and some others seek long life. Away from all this, I ask you for that which may not have any value in the worldly way, but I don’t know why in giving it you are so miserly. The world calls you large hearted, then why are you showing such miserliness in bestowing it on me. Do bestow your pure and unadulterated bhakti on me and fulfill my desire. Sai! I have perhaps gone mad for you, further add to my madness and terminate this differentiation between you and I which has become the cause of hindrance in our union.
The grace of Sai is unending It rains day and night Sai looks not to one’s merit Nor to his conduct in life
Baba! Innumerable devotees of yours give you bath everyday; clean you with towels; apply sandal paste on your forehead; dress you up with new robes; put garlands of flowers of various colours and varieties around your neck; perform your ‘Aartis’ with lighted ‘deepak’ having many wicks; sing Bhajans in melodious tunes accompanied by musical instruments; and offer food of various varieties to you. In this growing crowd of devotees, if one devotee of my sort, who has become helpless due to age, merely worships your idol installed in the temple of his heart with dedication and love, will it not be acceptable to you? Will there be something wanting in his bhakti? Baba many a time I feel very unhappy for being unable to meet my daily commitments. Sometimes I even feel that the distance between us is growing but when I return to myself, my inner self tells me that now there is no need left for you to stick to these rituals. Whatever devotees do is for their own satisfaction only. You are far away from all these. While in physical form, you had proclaimed that for your worship no particular rituals are necessary, you dwell in bhakti alone. I do hope that I have not lost the track by conjuring on such matters incessantly. Baba! Do show me your true path, I am your child.
My mother gave me the body Creating it out of her own She taught me to walk And infused the values of life in me Making me to stand on my own feet Maa left for the heavenly abode On Vijay Dashmi day in 1959 Entrusting me to the care of Sai Maa Who took over complete charge of my life hence forth The pain of losing the physical mother subsided. Sai Maa lifted me up into its arms, Kissed me, hugged me and gave me a new confidence To tread on the forthcoming path of search into the self The amount of love it bestowed on me Can the words ever describe? My life was filled with new hopes and new joys It attained a new meaning Every single moment The ecstasy of the soul enveloped my being Generating selfless, pure, unadulterated love. And slowly but steadily, Sai Maa’s grace descended on me Bestowing on me the priceless treasure of self surrender My whole being started to emit a fragrance Which turned many a heart towards my Sai Maa. Time kept on moving Slowly and slowly The chant of ‘Sai’ ‘Sai’ touched the skies And now Lo! The whole world Is filled with the echos of my Sai Maa’s name And I - a haggard, lone, old man sitting on my bed With satisfaction absolute Is watching this ongoing play Ready to merge in my Sai Maa.
When my head and heart shall become quiet, thoughts shall cease arising therein, and an unending quietude shall be filled within me. Then my Sai will automatically come and occupy his seat therein. I shall then not have to seek Him in temples or look for him in musical assemblies. Therefore, O’ the self in me, engage yourself in the task of washing and cleansing yourself and erase the feeling from your mind that you have known something about Baba or understood a little of him. When the pot gets filled, it stops making noise. First wash your head and heart from the clean and pure waters of Sai’s name and thereafter seek Him within. The heart which has experienced the grace of Baba neither wishes to talk nor hear anything. Quietude shall become its way of living and it shall always remain absorbed in its Sai. It would sing songs of Sai and get lost in him.
More poems and thoughts in coming part of the chapter
© Author – Late Shri. Suresh Chandra Gupta – Explicit Rights To Publish To Shirdi Sai Baba Books.com (Member of SaiYugNetwork.com)