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ChapterVII

WonderfulIncarnationBehaviourofSaiBabaHisYogaPracticesHisAllpervasivenessLeper
DevoteesserviceMasterKhapardesPlaguecaseGoingtoPandharpur.
WonderfulIncarnation

SaiBabaknewallYogicPractices.HewaswellversedinthesixprocessesincludingDhauti
(Stomachcleaningbyamoistenedpieceoflinen3"inbreadthand221/2"inlength),Khandayoga,i.e.,
separatingHislimbsandjoiningthemagain,andSamadhi,etc.IfyouthinkthatHewasaHindu,He
lookedlikeaYavan.IfyouthinkHimtobeaYavan,HelookedlikeapiousHindu.Noonedefinitely
knewwhetherHewasaHinduoraMahomedan.HecelebratedtheHindufestivalofRamaNavami
withalldueformalities,andatthesametimepermittedtheSandalprocessionoftheMahomedans.
Heencouragedwrestlingboutsinthisfestival,andgavegoodprizestowinners.WhentheGokul
Ashtamicame,HegottheGopalKalaceremonydulyperformedandonIdfestivals,Heallowed
Mahomedanstosaytheirprayers(Namaj)inHisMasjid.OnceintheMoharumfestival,some
MahomedansproposedtocontructaTajiyaorTabutintheMasjid,keepitthereforsomedaysand
afterwardstakeitinprocessionthroughthevillage.SaiBabaallowedthekeepingoftheTabutforfour
days,andonthefifthdayremoveditoutoftheMasjidwithouttheleastcompunction.IfwesaythatHe
wasaMahomedan,Hisearswerepierced(i.e.hadholesaccordingtoHindufashion).Ifyouthinkthat
HewasaHindu,Headvocatedthepracticeofcircumcision(thoughaccordingtoMr.Nanasaheb
Chandorkar,whoobservedHimclosely,HewasnotHimselfcircumcised.VidearticleinSaiLeelaon
"BabaHinduKiYavan"byB.V.Deo,page562).IfyoucallHimHindu,Healwayslivedinthe
Masjid;ifMahomedan,HehadalwaystheDhunisacredfirethere,andthefollowingthingswhichare
contrarytoMahomedanreligion,i.e.,grindingonthehandmill,blowingoftheconchandbells,
oblationinthefire,Bhajan,givingoffood,andworshipofBabasFeetbymeansofARGHYA(water)
werealwaysallowedthere.IfyouthinkthatHewasaMahomedan,thebestofBrahminsand
Agnihotris,leavingasidetheirorthodoxways,fellprostrateatHisFeet.Thosewhowenttomake
enquiriesabouthisnationality,weredumbfoundedandwerecapturedbyhisdarshana.Sononecould
definitelydecidewhetherSaiBabawasaHinduoraMahomedan*.(seebelowthisparagraph)Thisis
nowonder;forhewhocompletelysurrendershimselftotheLord,bygettingridofhisegoism;and
bodyconsciousnessthusbecomesonewithHim,andhasnothingtodowithanyquestionsofcasteor
nationality.SuchaoneasSaiBabawas,sawnodifferencebetweencasteandcasteandevenbeings
andbeings.HetookmeatandfishwithFakirs,butdidnotgrumblewhendogstouchedthedisheswith
theirmouths.
[*Note(1)Mhalsapati,anintimateShirdidevoteeofBaba,whoalwayssleptwithHimintheMasjid
andChavadi,saidthatSaiBabatoldhimthatHewasaBrahminofPathariandwashandedovertoa
Fakirinhisinfancy,andwhenHetoldthis,somemenfromPatharihadcome,andBabawasenquiring
aboutsomemenfromthatplace.VidesaiLeela1924,Page179.(2)Mrs.KashibaiKanitkar,the
famouslearnedwomanofPoonasaysintheexperienceNo.8,publishedonPage79,SaiLeelaVol.
11,1934,"OnhearingofBabasmiracles,wewerediscussingaccordingtoourtheosophicconvention
andfashionwhetherSaiBababelongedtoBlackorWhiteLodge.WhenonceIwenttoShirdi,Iwas
thinkingseriouslyaboutthisinmymind.AssoonasIapproachedthestepsoftheMasjid,Babacame
tothefrontandpointingtoHischestandstaringatmespokerathervehemently"ThisisaBrahmin,
pureBrahmin.Hehasnothingtodowithblackthings.NoMusalmancandaretostepinhere.Hedare
not."Againpointingtohischest"ThisBrahmincanbringlacksofmenonthewhitepathandtake
themtotheirdestination.ThisisaBrahminsMasjidandIwontallowanyblackMahomedantocast
hisshadowhere."]
SuchauniqueandwonderfulincarnationwasSaiBaba.Onaccountofthemeritsinmypastbirth,I
hadthegoodfortunetositatHisFeetandenjoyHisblessedcompany.ThejoyanddelightIderived
therefromwasincomparable.InfactSaiBabawaspureAnandandConsciousness.Icannotsufficiently
describleHim,Hisgreatnessanduniqueness.HewhotookdelightatHisFeet,wasestablishedinHis
ownself.ManySanyasis,SadhakasandallsortsofmenaspiringforsalvationcametoSaiBaba.He

alwayswalked,talkedandlaughedwiththemandalwaysutteredwithHistongueAllahMalik(God
isthesoleowner).Heneverlikeddiscussionorarguments.Hewasalwayscalmandcontrolled,though
irritableattimes,alwayspreachedfullVedantaandnobodyknewtillthelastWhowasBaba.Princes
andpoorpeopleweretreatedalikebyHim.Heknewtheinmostsecretsofall,andwhenHegave
expressiontothem,allweresurprised.Hewastherepositoryofallknowledge,stillHefeigned
ignorance.Healsodislikedhonour.SuchwerethecharacteristicsofSaiBaba.Though,Hehada
humanbody,HisdeedstestifiedtoHISGodhood.AllpeopleconsideredHimastheLordGodin
Shirdi.
BehaviourofSaiBaba
FoolthatIam,IcannotdescribeBabasmiracles.HegotalmostallthetemplesinShirdirepaired.
ThroughTatyaPatil,thetemplesofShani,Ganapati,ShankarParvati,VillageDeity,andMarutiwere
putinorder.Hischaritywasalsoremarkable.ThemoneyHeusedtocollectasDakshinawasfreely
distributed,Rs.20tosome,Rs.15or50,tootherseveryday.Therecipientsthoughtthatthiswaspure
charitymoney,andBabawishedthatitshouldbeusefullyemployed.
PeoplewereimmenselybenefitedbyhavingadarshanaofBaba.Somebecamehaleandhearty;wicked
peoplewereturnedintogoodones.Kushtha(Leprosy)wascuredinsomecases,manygottheirdesires
fulfilled,withoutanydropsormedicinebeingputintheeyes,someblindmengotbacktheirsightand
somelameonesgottheirlegs.NobodycouldseetheendofHisextraordinarygreatness.Hisfame
spreadfarandwide,andpilgrimsfromallsidesflockedtoShirdi.BabasatalwaysneartheDhuniand
easedHimselfthere,andalwayssatinmeditation;sometimeswithandonothertimeswithoutabath.
Heusedtotieawhiteturbanonhishead;andwearacleanDhotarroundhiswaist,andashirtonhis
body.Thiswashisdressinthebeginning.Hestartedpracticingmedicineinthevillage,examined
patientsandgavemedicines.Hewasalwayssuccessful,andHebecamefamousasaHakim(Doctor).
Acuriouscasemaybenarratedhere.Onedevoteegothiseyeballsquiteredandswollen.NoDoctor
wasavailableinShirdi.TheotherdevoteestookhimtoBaba.OtherDoctorswoulduseointments,
Anjans,cowsmilkandcamphorateddrugsetc.,insuchcases.Babasremedywasquiteunique.He
poundedsomeBEEBA(SomeCarpusAnaCardiumi.e.markingnuts)andmadetwoballsofthem,
thrustthemonineacheyeofthepatientandwrappedaclothbandageroundthem(eyes).Nextday,the
bandagewasremovedandwaterwaspouredovertheminastream.Theinflammationsubsidedandthe
pupilsbecamewhiteandclear.Thoughtheeyesareverydelicate,theBEEBAcausednosmarting;but
removedthediseaseoftheeyes.Manysuchcaseswerecuredandthisisonlyaninstanceinpoint.
BabasYogaPractices

BabaknewalltheprocessesandpracticesofYoga.Twoofthemwillbedescribedhere:
(1)DHAUTIorCLEANINGPROCESS:BabawenttothewellnearaBanyantreeataconsiderable
distancefromtheMasjideverythirddayandwashedhismouthandhadabath.Ononeoccasion,He
wasseentovomitouthisintestines,cleantheminsideandoutsideandplacethemonaJambtreefor
drying.TherearepersonsinShirdi,whohaveactuallyseenthis,andwhohavetestifiedtothisfact.
OrdinaryDhautiisdonebyamoistenedpieceoflinen,3inchesbroad221/2ft.long.Thispieceis
gulpeddownthethroatandallowedtoremaininthestomachforabouthalfanhourforbeingreacted
thereandthentakenout.ButBabasDhautiwasquiteuniqueandextraordinary.
(2)KHANDAYOGA:Inthispractice,BabaextractedthevariouslimbsfromHisbody,andleftthem
separatelyatdifferentplacesintheMasjid.Once,agentlemanwenttotheMasjid,andsawthelimbsof
Babalyingseparatelyatseparateplaces.Hewasmuchterrified;andhefirstthoughtofrunningtothe
villageofficers,andinformingthemofBababeinghackedtopiecesandmurdered.Hethoughtthathe
wouldbeheldresponsible,ashewasthefirstinformant,andknewsomethingoftheaffair.Sohekept
silent.Butnextdaywhenhewenttothemasjid,hewasverymuchsurprisedtoseeBaba,haleand
heartyandsound,asbefore.Hethought,thatwhathehadseenthepreviousday,wasonlyadream.

BabapractisedYogasince,HisinfancyandnobodykneworguessedtheproficiencyHeattained.He
chargednofeesforHiscures,becamerenownedandfamousbyvirtueofHismerits,gavehealthto
manyapoorandsufferingperson.ThisfamousDoctorofdoctorscarednotforHisinterests,but
alwaysworkedforthegoodandwelfareofothers,Himselfsufferingunbearableandterriblepainmany
atimeintheprocess.Onesuchinstance,Igivebelow,whichwillshowtheallpervasiveandmost
mercifulcharacterofSaiBaba.
BabasAllpervasivenessandMercy

Intheyear1910A.D.,BabawassittingneartheDhunionDivaliholidayandwarmingHimself.He
waspushingfirewoodintotheDhuni,whichwasbrightlyburning.Alittlelater,insteadofpushing
logsofwoods,BabapushedHisarmintotheDhuni;thearmwasscorchedandburntimmediately.This
wasnoticedbytheservantMadhava,andalsobyMadhavraoDeshpande(Shama).Theyatonceranto
BabaandMadhavaraoclaspedBababyHiswaistfrombehindanddraggedHimforciblebackward
andasked,"Deva,forwhathaveYoudonethis?"ThenBabacametoHissensesandreplied,"Thewife
ofablacksmithatsomedistantplace,wasworkingthebellowsofafurnace;herhusbandcalledher.
Forgettingthatherchildwasonherwaist,sheranhastilyandthechildslippedintothefurnace.I
immediatelythrustMyhandintothefurnaceandsavedthechild.IdonotmindMyarmbeingburnt,
butIamgladthatthelifeofthechildissaved."
LeperDevoteesService

OnhearingthenewsofBabashandbeingburntfrom(Shama)MadhavraoDeshpande,Mr.
NanasahebChandorkar,accompaniedbythefamousDoctorParmanandofBombaywithhismedical
outfitconsistingofointments,lintandbandageetc.rushedtoShirdi,andrequestedBabatoallowDr.
Parmanandtoexaminethearm,anddressthewoundcausedbytheburn.Thiswasrefused.Eversince
theburn,thearmwasdressedbytheleperdevotee,BhagojiShinde.Histreatmentconsistedin
massagingtheburntpartwithgheeandthenplacingaleafoveritandbandagingittightlywithPattis
(bandages).Mr.NanasahebChandorkarsolicitedBabamanyatimetounfastenthePattisandgetthe
woundexaminedanddressedandtreatedbyDr.Parmanand,withtheobjectthatitmaybespeedily
healed.Dr.Parmanandhimselfmadesimilarrequests,butBabapostponedsayingthatAllahwasHis
Doctor;anddidnotallowHisarmtobeexamined.Dr.Paramanandsmedicineswerenotexposedto
theirairofShirdi,astheyremainedintact,buthehadthegoodfortuneofgettingadarshanaofBaba.
Bhagojiwasallowedtotreatthehanddaily.Aftersomedays,thearmhealedandallwerehappy.Still,
wedonotknowwhetheranytraceofpainwasleftornot.Everymorning,Bhagojiwentthroughthis
programmeoflooseningthePattis,massaginghearmwithgheeandtightlybandagingitagain.This
wentontillSaiBabasSamadhi(death).SaiBaba,aperfectSiddha,asHewas,didnotreallywantthis
treatment,butoutoflovetoHisdevotee,HeallowedtheUpasanaserviceofBhagojitogoonun
interruptedallalong.WhenBabastartedforLendi,BhagojiheldanumbrellaoverHimand
accompaniedHim.Everymorning,whenBabasatnearthepostclosetotheDhuni,Bhagojiwas
presentandstartedhisservice.Bhagojiwasasinnerinhispastbrith.Hewassufferingfromleprosy,
hisfingershadshrunk,hisbodywasfullofpusandsmellingbadly.Thoughoutwardlyheseemedso
unfortunate,hewasreallyveryluckyandhappy,forhewasthepremierservantofBaba,andgotthe
benefitofHiscompany.
MasterKhapardesPlagueCase

IshallnowrelateanotherinstanceofBabaswonderfulLeela.Mrs.Khaparde,thewifeofMr.
DadasahebKhapardeofAmraoti,wasstayingatShirdiwithheryoungsonforsomedays.Onedaythe
songothighfever,whichfurtherdevelopedintoBubonicplague.Themotherwasfrightenedandfelt
mostuneasy.ShethoughtofleavingtheplaceforAmraoti,andwentnearBabaintheevening,when
HewascomingneartheWada(nowSamadhiMandir)inHiseveningrounds,foraskingHis
permission.SheinformedHiminatremblingtone,thatherdearyoungsonwasdownwithplague.
Babaspokekindlyandsoftlytoher,sayingthattheskyisbesetwithclouds;buttheywillmeltand

passoffandeverythingwillbesmoothandclear.Sosaying,HeliftedupHisKafniuptothewaistand
showedtoallpresent,fourfullydevelopedbubos,asbigaseggs,andadded,"See,howIhavetosuffer
forMydevotees;theirdifficultiesareMine."Seeingthisuniqueandextraordinarydeed(Leela),the
peoplewereconvincedastohowtheSaintssufferpainsfortheirdevotees.Themindofthesaintsis
softerthanwax,itissoft,inandout,asbutter.Theylovetheirdevoteeswithoutanyideaofgain,and
regardthemastheirtruerelatives.
GoingtoPandharpurandStayingThere

IshallnowclosethisChapterafterrelatingastoryillustratinghowSaiBabalovedHisdevoteesand
anticipatedtheirwishesandmovements.Mr.NanasahebChandorkar,whowasagreatdevoteeof
Baba,wasMamlatdaratNandurbarinKhandesh.HegotanorderoftransfertoPandharpur.His
devotiontoSaiBababorefruit,ashegotanordertogoandstayatPandharpurwhichisregardedas
theBHUVAIKUNTHAHeavenonearth.Nanasahebhadtotakeimmediatecharge,soheleft,
immediately,fortheplace,withoutevenwritingorinforminganybodyatShirdi.Hewantedtogivea
surprisevisittoShirdihisPandharpur,seeandsalutehisVithoba(Baba),andthenproceed.Nobody
dreamtofNanasahebsdepartureforShirdi,butSaiBabaknewallaboutthis,asHiseyeswere
everywhere(omniscient).AssoonasNanasahebapproachedNeemgaon,afewmilesfromShirdi,there
wasstirintheMasjidatShirdi.BabawassittingandtalkingwithMhalsapati,AppaShindeand
Kashiram,whenHeatoncesaid,"LetusallfourdosomeBhajan,thedoorsofPandhariareopen,let
usmerrilysing."Thentheybegantosinginchorus,theburdenofthesongbeing"Ihavetogoto
PandharpurandIhavetostayonthere,foritisthehouseofmyLord."
BabasangandthedevoteesfollowedHim.InashorttimeNanasahebcametherewithhisfamily,
prostratedbeforeBabaandrequestedHimtoaccompanythemtoPandharpurandstaywiththemthere.
Thissolicitationwasnotnecessary,asthedevoteestoldNanasahebthatBabawasalreadyinthemood
ofgoingtoPandharpurandstayingthere.HearingthisNanasahebwasmovedandfellatBabasFeet.
ThengettingBabaspermission,Udi(sacredashes)andBlessings,NanasahebleftforPandharpur.
ThereisnoendtoBabasstories,butletmenowmakeahalthere,reservingforthenextChapterother
topics,suchasimportanceofhumanlife,Babaslivingonalms,Bayajabaisserviceandotherstories.

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