Sai Baba Shirdi
Shirdi is located in Ahemad nagar dist of Maharashtra State , india. Shirdi Sai Baba, was an Indian guru, yogi, and fakir who is regarded by his Hindu and Muslim devotees as a saint. Many Hindu devotees – including Hemadpant, who wrote the famous Shri Sai Satcharitra – consider him an incarnation of Lord Krishna,while other devotees consider him as an incarnation of Lord Dattatreya. Many devotees believe that he was a Satguru, an enlightened Sufi Pir, or a Qutub. No verifiable information is available regarding Sai Baba’s birth and place of birth.Sai Baba’s real name is unknown.
The name “Sai” was given to him upon his arrival at Shirdi, a town in the west-Indian state of Maharashtra,India. Mahalsapati, a local temple priest, recognized him as a muslim saint and greeted him with the words ‘Ya Sai!’, meaning ‘Welcome Sai!’. Sai or Sayi is a Persian title given to Sufi saints, meaning ‘poor one’.However Sai may also seen in Sanskrit term “Sakshat Eshwar” or the divine. The honorific “Baba” means “father; grandfather; old man; sir” in Indo-Aryan languages.
Thus Sai Baba denotes “holy father” or “saintly father”.Sai Baba was a very popular saint, especially in India, and is worshipped by people all over the world. Sai have had no love with perishable things and his sole concern was in self-realization(self respect). He taught a moral code of love, forgiveness, helping others, charity, contentment, inner peace, and devotion to God and guru. Sai Baba’s teaching combined elements of Hinduism and Islam: he gave the Hindu name Dwarakamayi to the mosque where he lived in, practiced Hindu and Muslim rituals, taught,using words and figures that drew from both traditions, and was buried in Shirdi. One of his well known epigrams, “Sabka Malik Ek ” (“One God governs all”), is associated with Islam and Sufism. He always uttered “Allah Malik” (“God is King”).
Sai Baba’s disciples became famous as spiritual figures and saints, such as Mhalsapati, a priest of the Kandoba temple in Shirdi, and Upasni Maharaj. He was revered by other saints, such as Saint Bidkar Maharaj, Saint Gangagir, Saint Janakidas Maharaj, and Sati Godavari Mataji. Sai Baba referred to several saints as ‘my brothers’, especially the disciples of Swami Samartha of Akkalkot. Sai Baba opposed all persecution based on religion or caste. He was an opponent of religious orthodoxy – Christian, Hindu and Muslim. Although Sai Baba himself led the life of an ascetic, he advised his followers to lead an ordinary family life.
In his personal life and practice, Sai Baba observed worship procedures belonging to Hinduism and Islam; he shunned any kind of regular rituals but allowed the namaz, chanting of Al-Fatiha, and Qur’an readings at Muslim festival times. Occasionally reciting the Al-Fatiha himself, Baba also enjoyed listening to moulu and qawwali accompanied with the tabla and sarangi twice daily.
Sai Baba encouraged his devotees to pray, chant God’s name, and read holy scriptures. He told Muslims to study the Qur’an, and Hindus to study texts such as the Ramayana, Bhagavad Gita, and Yoga Vasistha. He advised his devotees and followers to lead a moral life, help others, love every living being without any discrimination, and develop two important features of character: faith (Shraddha) and patience (Saburi). He criticized atheism. In his teachings, Sai Baba emphasized on the descharging duties in accordence with nature, and of being content regardless of the situation.
Sai Baba interpreted the religious texts of Islam. He explained the meaning of the Hindu scriptures in the spirit of Advaita Vedanta. His philosophy also had numerous elements of bhakti. The three main Hindu spiritual paths – Bhakti Yoga, Gnyan Yoga, and Karma Yoga – influenced his teachings.
Sai Baba encouraged charity, and stressed on importance of sharing. He said: “Unless there is some relationship or connection, nobody goes anywhere. If any men or creatures come to you, do not discourteously drive them away, but receive them well and treat them with due respect. Shri Hari (God) will certainly be pleased if you give water to the thirsty, bread to the hungry, clothes to the naked, and your verandah to strangers for sitting and resting. If anybody wants any money from you and you are not inclined to give, do not give, but do not bark at him like a dog.” Other favorite sayings of SAI were: “Why do you fear when I am here”, and “He has no beginning… He has no end.”
The Shirdi Sai movement has spread to the Caribbean and to countries such as the United States, Australia, Dubai, Malaysia, and Singapore. The Shirdi Sai Baba movement is one of the main Hindu religious movements in English-speaking countries.
Sai Baba had many disciples and devotees; In various religions
During Sai Baba’s life, the Hindu saint Anandanath of Yewala declared Sai Baba a spiritual “diamond”. Another saint, Gangagir, called him a “jewel”. Sri Beedkar Maharaj greatly revered Sai Baba, and in 1873, when he met him he bestowed the title Jagad guru upon him. Sai Baba was also greatly respected by Vasudevananda Saraswati (known as Tembye Swami). He was also revered by a group of Shaivic yogis, to which he belonged, known as the Nath-Panchayat.
In Islam, Sai Baba mainly considered as a normal human being he was a muslim fakir he practiced islam and also appears in Sufism as a Pir. Meher Baba declared Baba to be a Qutub-e-Irshad – the highest of the five Qutubs, a “Master of the Universe” in the spiritual hierarchy.Sai Baba is also worshipped by prominent Zoroastrians such as Nanabhoy Palkhivala and Homi Bhabha, and has been cited as the Zoroastrians’ most popular non-Zoroastrian religious figure.
Meher Baba met Sai Baba only once in his lifetime, during World War I, in December 1915. Meher Baba was still a youngster named Merwan Sheriar Irani when he met Sai Baba for a few minutes during one of Sai Baba’s processions in Shirdi. This event is considered as the most significant in Meher Baba’s life. Shri Sai Satcharita (Sai Baba’s life story), makes no mention of Meher Baba. But in Lord Meher, the life story of Meher Baba, there are innumerable references to Sai Baba. Meher Baba credited his Avataric advent to Upasni, Sai Baba, and three other Perfect Masters – Hazrat Babajan, Hazrat Tajuddin Baba, and Narayan Maharaj.