It has been a month long that any article was posted on this blessed blog. My apologies for the same. The reason for my absence and in-activeness is that when i am writing this post, i have lost my bachelor’s degree 🙂 Yes, your guesses are absolutely correct. I have stepped in new lease of life by marrying with my dear love and this new life started with our trip to Shirdi, getting special treatment and darshan on another special occasion i.e. my birthday.
Every Shirdi trip has been necessarily noted down, not as a blog owner, but as a devotee of Sai Baba, who doesn’t want those divine memories to fade away with passage of time and age. Shirdi trips are full of divinity and words often fall short to narrate what we have experienced there. Initially, in early days of devotion, Shirdi trip and things to be done there were planned in advance. On actually being there, me and my family notice that Baba has His own plans for reception of His devotees and so, now except arrival and departure dates nothing is planned. Our welfare is Baba’s will, so why to take pains in settling and clinging over our plans?
After our wedding on May 24, 2010, my hubby had planned Shirdi trip and more excitingly he decided to be present there on my birthday i.e. June 3, 2010. On my last Shirdi trip during Diwali, i had experienced a strange wave of emotion for a second at the time of my last darshan before leaving Shirdi. As i was stepping backwards in Samadhi Mandir on the departure day, not to miss even a single glimpse of Baba, i found myself in state of grief. My heart was crying at that last meeting with Baba, but this was usual with me each time i left Shirdi. This time it was something different. A feeling that i had never experienced before and which cannot be expressed in words had gathered and was piercing within me to stop my backward movements from Samadhi Mandir. Since it was something new and unexplainable i did not disclose it to anyone. It was afternoon when this happened and after leaving Samadhi Mandir and even Shirdi, i was experiencing grief within me and my state was the same till night that day. One day before leaving Shirdi, Panditji and renowned aarti singer of Samadhi Mandir was with us. When my parents informed him about my wedding date and that he was the first person with whom they were sharing the news and that too in Shirdi, panditji exclaimed, “Such news are shared at a girl’s parents’ place and Shirdi is no doubt her parent’s place.” These words were taken casually, but they were words of Baba which was proved during my recent visit to Shirdi.
The strange grief which i referred above was experienced again on my wedding day at the time of Bidai (a wedding ceremony in which the bride leaves her parents and goes with her husband). Thus now i understood that grief and the reason behind feeling so. Baba very well knew that it was my last trip to Shirdi before my wedding and the moments of grief were actually moments of Bidai with my God Father – Baba :(!!!
Now please allow me to narrate more divine experiences of this trip. We reached Shirdi on June 2, 2010 on divine call and booked ourselves at Sansthan’s new guest house “Dwaravati“. Without noting time, we rushed to Samadhi Mandir for darshan. Luckily we were in main hall during noon aarti. Ah! what a bliss!!! We were far behind that it was not possible for us to have even a glimpse of Baba although we were in Samadhi Mandir. But we were seated on the raised platform adjacent to Dwarkamai towards the end of Samadhi Mandir. Thus we were present both the places at the same time!!! The scene of noon arti during earlier times of Baba sporting in flesh and blood came in front of my eyes while chanting arti and when i had glimpse at Dwarkamai.
Towards sunset we had divine vibrations of Baba’s strong presence in Dwarkamai and Chavadi. Next day was Thursday and also my birthday. I wished to have darshan of Baba during Kakad arti. An elderly devotee of Baba had advised me to attend Kakad arti in Dwarkamai. So adhering to this advice, we headed towards Dwarkamai for Kakad arti. Very few devotees were present in Dwarkamai and thus we grabbed our seats on divine floor of Dwarkamai. Baba was seen in CC Tv and His glory was fascinating. It was a sight of heaven to see Him being dressed. An old resident of Shirdi entered Dwarkamai and sat quietly in a corner after completion of Kakad arti and holy bath. Few lines of Marathi Bhajan were being chanted at that time. That devotee, without minding others, started singing bhajan in the same tone as being sung in Samadhi Mandir in loud voice. His devotion was clearly reflected in his singing and we were astonished to see him in such state of devotion.
It was Thursday and it seemed that Baba had invited many of His devotees that day. Thus we postponed our darshan till noon and decided to visit Sai Nagar railway station. Though railway station is not a rare sight, a railway station in Shirdi has its own charm and it was attracting me. It was cool and breezy place. Many auto-rickshaws with it drivers were queued in front of entrance. Generally we get to see people all around in crowded places like railway station, but i found all different spectacle in Baba’s town. It was very silent and refreshing. Very few countable people were seen. More importantly, it was very much opposite from the sight of Samadhi Mandir premises, where we find devotees and devotees all around. We took some photographs there (photographs will be shared soon) went to prasadalay and took delicious yet simple and nutritious lunch. Since it was about noon now we thought of having darshan in Samadhi Mandir. Till we reached darshan queue, we found huge crowd. So we decided to sit in front of Mukh darshan. The platform in front of mukh darshan was not every crowded and we could sit making 90 degree angle to Baba’s face. I was gazing Him sitting comfortably there. At first there were no words and no prayers. Only loving glances were reaching to my Babaji. Everyone passing nearby that window used to bow to Baba. Even the ones who had left Samdhi Mandir just few minutes ago, halted there, as if to give concluding salute. This distracted my speechless condition and i raised a question to Baba while seeing crowd gathered in front of mukh darshan, other crowd summed up in Samadhi Mandir, another crowd lined up in queue with eagerness of darshan in their eyes and many many others awaiting for divine call, “How do You manage to listen so many prayers at the same time?” Though i did not get any direct answer from Baba i found Him smiling at me. Thus i was assured to get response from any of His messenger. Though this seems to be small case, i observed that my patience was tested.
Now that it was Thursday and we were in Shirdi, we could not afford to miss Chavadi procession. We went to room, refreshed ourselves and started for Samadhi Mandir in evening at about 6:00 Pm in a hope to attend evening arti in front of mukh darshan. As we were leaving, it started raining making atmosphere cool, refreshing and more charging. We waited for the rain to stop and proceeded. But Lo! as soon as we reached near Dwarkamai it started raining heavily with lightning and thunder. We rushed for shelter in Abdul Baba’s cottage and it rained for next 45 minutes. I was doubting that we would have to attend evening arti standing there only and Chavadi procession might get canceled. My doubting state of mind was read by Baba and rain stopped just few minutes before arti commenced. We took seats for arti in parayan hall where there was pin drop silence. We read one chapter of Shri Sai Satcharitra and left for Chavadi procession. We took our positions inside railing in front of gate of Samadhi Mandir from where the procession goes towards Dwarkamai (this gate remains closed at other times). Patiently we waited for the procession to pass from pre-determined path and simultaneously we could listen drums and other musical instruments being played at their fullest capacity in Samadhi Mandir. The procession reached near us and very quickly passed towards Dwarkamai. A small arti was sung there and procession headed towards Chavadi. Shirdi Maze Pandharpur and Sai Rehem Nazar Karna hymns were recited there. The procession then quickly returned to Samadhi Mandir. I was totally in tears to watch this heavenly spectacle for the first time and being a part of it. More importantly it was gift to me from Baba on my birthday, this is what i conclude.
Next day i.e. Friday, June 4, 2010 was the day of departure. Even after spending two full joyful days and still half day was left in Shirdi, i was upset. We first booked our return tickets and went in Samdhi Mandir for last darshan. We joined queue and were again lucky to attend that day’s noon arti comfortably. At about 5:00 pm i went to Dwarkamai to ask for permission to leave, a request to call again soon and to bid lovable good bye to Sai Babaji and left for Baroda.
After i returned from Shirdi, while narrating divine experiences of Shirdi trip to Sai brother Rana Gill (lyricist and singer of Bhajan album Sai Tere Hazaaron Naam), i referred him the question which was earlier referred to Baba near Mukh Darshan. He, as per his opinion and views answered me, “Baba, as we have read about Him, has always taken Himself as disciple of of His Master (The Supreme One). He has and will not take any credit of being God Himself. He has been acting as God’s (Maalik’s) messenger from the day He landed on this earth in bodily form for welfare of mankind. Thus, He has to pass our prayers and wishes to His Master and His master in turn grant our wishes thus giving credit to Baba, “I found this answer quite satisfactory and i was paid for my patience, this is what i feel and conclude.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in the above write up solely belong to the person who has uttered them and they are not shared with any intention to hurt anyone’s feelings and/or to raise any dispute or contraversy.