- With the permission of Sai, Sumeet Ponda
Lest we see miracles, we don’t bow down. Till such time that we witness or experience an impossibility turning in to a possibility, we actually don’t believe. Same is the case with our belief in Sai. The miracles that Sai performs make ordinary people turn into devotees who, in turn, queue up for kilometres and hours together for a glimpse of the Saint-deity, carved into life in exotic white Italian marble, at His Samadhi in bustling Shirdi. Usually, miracle is the link that binds ordinary innocent people to Sai. Similar visuals can be seen outside numerous Sai Baba Temples that have flourished in various corners, not only in India but even in far flung Nations.
People line up with offerings including garlands, incense sticks, offerings, prasad, etc. in their hands and tonnes of wishes, desires and greed in their hearts to win over the nonchalant Faqir. They want the World at their feet. Their wish list includes power, money, name, children and their welfare, marriage, property and everything that they can imagine for a luxurious, comfortable life. No wonder there may be a few who would want to avenge an offence or level scores or even want downfall of some other person. For most, Sai is a wish-fulfilling deity. They know, they are sure, that Sai will never return them empty-handed. Sai unfailingly listens and readily responds to the cries because, on the infinite time-line, He hasn’t even gone away a hundred years from us. I know, from my experience, that Sai never grants negative desires but He does grant all material wishes according to our Karma-balance. I also understand that once one takes refuge in the realm of Sai, all previous and future Karmas fall into a semblance.
We ask from Him, and He, with good grace, grants. Our demands keep increasing but His treasure never falls short. But is this the only treasure Sai has? Is this all that’s to Sai. In Shree Sai Sachcharitra, Sai mentions too: “My Sircar says, "Take, take," but everybody comes to me and says 'Give, give.' Nobody attends carefully to the meaning of what I say. My Sircar's treasury (spiritual wealth) is full, it is overflowing. I say, "Dig out and take away this wealth in cartloads, the blessed son of a true mother should fill himself with this wealth. The skill of my Faqir, the Leela of my Bhagwan, the aptitude of my Sircar is quite unique. What about Me? Body (earth) will mix with earth, breath with air. This time won't come again. I go somewhere, sit somewhere; the hard Maya troubles Me much, still I feel always anxiety for My men. He who does anything (spiritual endeavour) will reap its fruit and he who remembers these words of Mine will get invaluable happiness."
Who cares? We all are so blindingly in pursuit of illusions that we simply pretend to overlook the unending treasury of Sai in pursuit of something that’s perishable, because as again in Shree Sai Sachcharitra, Sai Baba says, “What My Sircar (God) gives, lasts to the end of time. No other gift from any man can be compared to His.” In our chase for materialistic wealth, we decide to forget that whatever God gives us, is permanent in nature; What God wills for us, will stay forever while all that is created and gifted by fragile human beings, will not last and if our happiness is dependent on it, it too will vanish. Sai wants us to rise spiritually so that we become useful for others and at the same time, we add value to our existence and justify our endeavour on this planet wherein we are given an invaluable mortal coil. Whatever enhancement we make here will offset all our previous negative Karmas and help us create a better destiny in future lives. We still ignore.
The never-ending rat-race for money and material comforts starts taking a huge toll by way of enticing never-ending tensions. One subsides and the other is ready to pop-up. The greed of having, acquiring and accumulating more and more robs us of minor, yet important pleasures of life. A smile becomes a rarity. The complexity of relations and the pressure to maintain them while trying to keep everyone happy taxes heavily. The self-created paucity of time actually disorganises us big way. We are always gasping for breath while we try to make ends meet.
Nothing seems to be in order – we, our house and our work. There is commotion everywhere. The numerous channels on the television fail to entertain. The books that taught us values collect dust in the crafted mahogany shelf. The information onslaught by various media is beyond the realms of our brains’ processing capabilities. Nothing stays in the clutter. The relations stored in a mobile transform us into islands. We are left aloof and alone. Emotionally broken! The fluffy, comfortable bed is devoid of sleep. The sleeping pills are ineffective and so are anti-depressants. It is a vacuum that blaringly looks in our eyes. We become irritable. We make issues out of nothing. We act like a frustrated person who finds happiness nowhere. We rake up fights deliberately. Perhaps, that gives us more solace than staying calm. We want to win. Our anger finds a vent on the weak. The burden to show-off, in order to make us socially acceptable, makes us a portable brand store. We want to flaunt them even if they are a first copy of the original. There’s nothing original left in us. Values, characters, nature and form, all have mutilated. At times, even the mirror in front of us lies. Scared, we close our eyes because we are not able to look at our own selves. And when we close our eyes, an invisible tear rolls out. Invisible, because we don’t want others to see us break-down!
Groping in the dark, broken, we look for recourse, a resort, a support. Our insecurity and the fear of rejection don’t allow us to open up even to our confidantes, including our family and friends. A deep chasm stares at us. Then suddenly, we find a strange force pulling us towards it. That force caresses us, consoles us and cajoles us. We burst into tears. A lava of pent up emotions stats flowing. While we stare at the infinite insecurity, Sai caresses us. He creates this whirlpool of happenings and events, this turmoil only to make us realise that we are treading the wrong path and Sai, with open arms, is waiting for us – to hold us and take us on the right path. Provided we are willing.
Another miracle, albeit of a different nature, is about to unfold. Sai starts pulling us. In fact, Sai has a unique way of pulling His devotees like one pulls a sparrow tied from feet by a tender thread. He has a distinctive method of putting people on the path of reformation. Sai is a true reformist. He changes people without punishing them. He changes people with love, compassion, empathy, kindness, forgiveness and joy. He changes us with His love. The tears of helplessness now become tears of joy. Ecstasy fills us to the brim. We become calm and relaxed. The jitters of insecurity turn into a strong feeling of security. Sai replaces remorse with recrafting, guilt with retracing. From being irritable, we become relaxed; our howling vanishes into whispers; the ill-temper turns into warmth; selfishness vanishes and we begin to offer helping hands.
Sai retracts us and puts us on the right path, the path He always wanted us to be on. He ensures that we reach the pinnacle of our spiritual path, His treasury without any further hiccups. Another miracle has happened.
Baba bhalii kar rahe..