|Bapu (Aniruddhasinh), Suchitdada and myself at Aadyapipa Samadhi Sthanam
|Today is Shreekrishna Jayanti, the Kalashtami of the month of Shravan, in other words ‘Gokulashtami’ – a very special day for all of the Bapu (Aniruddhasinh) family. It was on this day that Adyapipa i.e. “Kaka” left this world. ‘Kaka’ was what we – my Dada – and I called our father.
There was this one thing about Kaka that as a child I found very intriguing. Every night he went to sleep gazing intently at the photograph of Sainath and wanted that the lights in the room be switched off. More than frequently it was I who was assigned this task of switching off the lights. After I had switched them off, he sometimes wanted them switched on again. He was just never contented as far as the darshan of Sainath was concerned. This happened very often and I thought to myself, “It is the same photograph he gazes at day in and day out! Why then must he do this?” But now I know why he did it. I have the answer to my own question. This is the photograph that Kaka’s father had got home – the one that Sainath Himself had touched and blessed on the request of Kaka’s father. This was the one. It has always been with us in our home at Thane, right from 1966 – ever since we moved in.
When the day of Kaka taking leave of us was near, Bapu (Aniruddhasinh) arranged to fetch this photograph from Thane and had it put up in Kaka’s room right before his eyes. Kaka understood what it meant. He was so full of joy, so completely overwhelmed seeing the photograph that tears just kept streaming from his eyes. The day before he passed away, Kaka asked Bapu (Aniruddhasinh) in my presence, “Bapu, how many days more yet?” Bapu replied, “Only a few hours”. On this, Kaka took my hand and placed it in Bapu’s (Aniruddhasinh) hand. He was very contented. For me this is and shall be the dearest, the best and the most precious gift that Kaka has ever given to me.
|Personal Copy of Shree Saisachcharit that Kaka used to read
|It was in 1945 i.e. at his age of twelve years that Kaka resolved to do a minimum of four ‘saptah‘ (reading through of a sacred work within a span of seven days) of the Shree Saisachcharit every year. As given in the Shree Saisachcharit, the ‘saptah‘ culminated on the days of Ramnavmi, the Gurupournima, the Gokulashtami and the Dassera.
He who has his own well-being at heart, ought to read this work and imbibe it in thought and deed as a value. Through every one of his births then, this will keep him in joyful gratitude to Shree Sainath’s love and grace …. (Shree Saisachcharit – Chapter52 Verse 52)This sacred work may be read in one’s own home especially on occasions that Sai celebrated – on the day of the Gurupournima, the Gokulashtami, the Ramnavmi and the day Sai left His body (Dassera) ….(Shree Saisachcharit – Chapter 52 Verse 53)
I even remember that for a few years Kaka had done the ‘saptah‘ sitting beside he ‘kolamba‘ (a large open pot that held food. Baba gave some from it to bhaktas and it even remained open to stray animals. But the food was indeed a form of blessing from Baba) in the Dwarkamai. We, i.e. Aai (my mother), my Dada and I sat by his side all through the time he read the Shree Saisachcharit. This was somewhere around the period between 1970 and 1975. After that however, the number of Sai bhaktas visiting Shirdi began to swell so rapidly that it became impossible to sit there and do a whole ‘saptah‘. So then Kaka read only as many chapters as he could sitting inside the Dwarkamai. Even today, his voice rings in my ears, I hear him read the Saisachcharit. It is to Kaka’s ‘paaraayan’, (reading through of a sacred work within a stipulated period) his regular and consistent reading of this work that the roots of my fondness for the Shree Saisachcharit can be traced. Thus it is, the bond that we have with the Shirdi of Sainath, of Baba; that is how we connect with it. We did the ‘vaari’ of Shirdi at least two times in the year.
Verses 218 to 222 of the 35th chapter were very close to Kaka’s heart.
This ‘Sachcharit’ is a simple, straight forward path – easy and meant for every one.
Every such place where it is cherished and read with love, assumes the form of the
Dwarkamai. And so in that space, Sai too manifests Himself for sure. ….218
These are the banks of the river Godavari, the sacred Shirdi too so close;
Here dwells Sai along with the ‘dhuni’; Know well this fact, recall it with love at all
times and He will rid you of all trouble. ….219
Where the principles, the mission of Sai are read and held dear, is the abode of Sai
at all times. Such a reading (of the work) done over and over again and with faith
and love in the heart, pleases Him in every way. ….220
Recalling to the mind the heart full of love, Sai the abode of eternal Joy – the
Joy that just is; reciting His name every day is all that one needs to do and offer
in life. We need neither an arduous austerity nor any penance nor even onerous
Given in love at Sai’s Feet, all those who regularly and consistently drink in (inside
of the body) and apply (on the outside of the body) Sai’s Udi (vibhuti), shall have
their desires fulfilled and so, contentment in life. ….222
Kaka literally lived these words. His life was these verses personified.
Kaka even sang the ‘Shree Sai-stavan-manjiri’ very sweetly. It was he who had instructed Dada and me to recite the Shree Sai-stavan-manjiri and so it became part of our regular upasana.
On 13th November 2000, Bapu (Aniruddhasinh) appointed Kaka to the post of ‘Pipilika Paanthastha’. For Kaka, this moment marked the beginning of a very different, a very special journey on the spiritual path. Kaka quietened, he became calm. In the year 2004, on Bapu’s (Aniruddhasinh) instructions, he gave me the Gurumantra – this again was a verse from the Shree Saisachcharit (verse 152 of the 11th chapter)
All your desires, even the unusual will be fulfilled Thus ultimately rendered contented and free of them, you will attain to the state of intimacy with the Sadguru-parmatma – every moment and forever. And so the Ram-parmatma will make your heart His abode – every moment and forever.
All the shraddhavaan Bapubhaktas have, most certainly a special and a very strong connection with the “Shree Saisachcharit”. It was through the “Shree Sai Samartha Vidnyan Prabodhini” that Bapu initiated for us, the Panchasheel Examination based on the Shreesaisachcharit. Bapu (Aniruddhasinh) Himself taught the bhaktas, He gave the lectures based on the practicals. These lectures were then compiled and made available in the form of a textbook. Thousands of shraddhavaan friends appeared for this examination. In 1996 the very first Rasayatra was organized – this again had for its destination Shirdi! Bapu (Aniruddhasinh) explained Sai and Shirdi to all shraddhavaan friends present then. And now we have Bapu’s (Aniruddhasinh) discourses in Hindi – yet again on the Shree Saisachcharit!
We are now launching a forum through this blog, starting Wednesday 15th August 2012. The forum will be called “Sai – The Guiding Spirit“.