Sai Baba, one of the foremost saints
of modern India, lived in the small village of Shirdi
in the state of Maharashtra for sixty years. Due to
his presence there even after his Samadhi, today the
small village has transformed itself as a great spiritual
center to people from all religions. Shri Sai Baba,
inspite of his great spiritual stature, never publicized
himself through discoursing, touring and preaching---unlike
today's many 'so-called' saints. Rather, he discouraged
unnecessary publicity. But still, his spiritual perfection
is still drawing innumerable devotees to him from all
over the world.
Sai Baba did never reveal his original name, time and
place of birth, especially his religion and caste, and
even the names of his parents. Through this, he has
emerged as a solution to all the religious and communal
differences that are destroying the world today. He
preaches that God is Almighty and he has given all the
souls on earth equal opportunity to reach him, whichever
is the religion they belong to. 'Sai Baba' is the name
given to him by his first devotee, Mahalsapathi - 'Sai'
means 'Saint' and 'Baba' means 'Father'. The name is
just an expression of love, reverence and devotion.
Sai Baba never discriminated between the rich and the
poor. He was equally indifferent to honour or dishonour
shown to him by the people. He used to utter the name
of 'Allah' frequently. All religious scriptures spell
that any spiritual quest does not fulfill without a
proper guide or Sadguru. Shri Sai Baba has led many
seekers as a Sadguru towards spiritual progress. These
seekers are either drawn to him by himself or by other
saints and deities.
Shirdi town is situated in Rahata Tahasil in Ahmednagar
District of Maharashtra State (India). It is located
at 19o45' North Latitude and 74o25' East Longitude.
It falls on Ahmednagar-Manmad State Highway No.10 at
83 Km. from Ahmednagar, and 15 Km. from Kopargaon. It
(the Ahmednagar -Manmad road) was a very busy route
in the old times. It is located at 185 Km. to the East
from Western Seashore line.
Teachings of Sai Baba
All religions preach that God is Almighty and He is
omnipresent. The omnipresence of God is clearly manifested
in the various experiences that Sai Baba has given to
his devotees--- anywhere, anytime. He once said, "He
who thinks that I am only at Shirdi has never known
me. I am omnipresent----anywhere, everywhere, all the
time and in all creation. I am at Shirdi and everywhere.
I am formless and everywhere! I am everything and beyond.
All the Universe is in Me. Wherever you see, whatever
you see, I am there." He not only preached this,
but he demonstrated the truth through his deeds (Leelas).
The omnipresence of Shri Sai Baba demonstrated that
he knows everything that has happened, happening and
will happen in the lives of all creatures in the world.
In addition to this, he also demonstrated that omnipresence
of God is also manifested in the non-living things.
This provides an effective check on the evil propensities
of devotees. But still, he always said, "I am the
slave of God"; "Allah Malik".
Sai Baba promises that he will lead his devotees both
materially and spiritually if they simply remember his
omnipresence always----in everything they do and in
everybody. Study of religious and spiritual scriptures,
life histories of saints, remembering the his holy deeds
(leelas), coupled with meditation and prayer helps the
devotees to do so. All the mystics of the world and
all saints have declared that the immediate presence
of a realized sage is one of the most potent forces
in the spiritual advancement of Sadhak or the seeker.
Contact with them induces in us inner peace and purity,
restores our sense of values, wipes out illusory allurements
of the senses and turns us towards spirit with renewed
vigour. Besides, when approached in a proper manner,
they can enable us to realize that all the saints are
One in essence.