Frequently Asked Questions
Answers by Shri C.B Satpathy ji

  1. What does this word 'Sai' mean?

    In various Indian languages it means a Protector, a Husband ,a Religious Teacher and a Father. Pray to Him Like a Father.His Love will manifest in many ways.

  2. Who is Shirdi Sai Baba?Is He Sadguru Or An Avatar?Please Explain.

    Before one could ask whether Shri Sai Baba is an Avatar or a Sadguru one must know the difference between the two .A Sadguru is one who dispels darkness called ignorance and lights the lamp of wisdom in us.A Sadguru is one who guides us and shows the direction to God. An Avatar is the one (none else but God Himself ) who descends to uplift mankind.He can come as a full Avataar that is with all 16 aspects shodas kalas or as a partial Avataar with a few kalas out of this 16.I firmly believe that Shri Shirdi Sai Baba is an Avataar of God.Lord Shiva has descended in order to uplift mankind and re-establish dharma.He always use to act as if He was just a fakir and servant of God but quite a few times in front of devotees who were really eligible to receive His grace He declared that He was Lord Himself.The qualities required to call Him an Avataar are 1)Omnipotence ; 2) Omnipresence ; 3)Omniscience. He had full control over all the five elements. We all know that He controlled the fire and rain as narrated in " Shri Sai Satcharitra", the life story of Shri Sainath.

  3. What is the relevance of Sai's teachings in today's world?

    The most important things that Sai Baba of Shirdi taught are:-
    I)Love towards all animals,birds and insects: Baba used to feed dogs even before He partook food.He extended his love to even a useless rock used for washing clothes by sitting on it .Today that rock is seen in Dwarkamai and is worshipped by devotees who come there.People today should learn this and follow His Teachings.To a great extent devotees are following this.People are seen distributing clothes ,food,etc to the poor Narayana Seva is going on all over the world in various Sai centers.

    II)Religious tolerance: Shirdi Sai Baba looked after the Hindus and Muslims equally.We can find people of all religions coming to Him even now.He always preached that all are one and be alike to everyone.In today's world there is a lot of tolerance among people of various religions.People must believe that all are Humans.Faith may be different but the goal is one.Shri Sai devotees are found very tolerant in this aspect .We find Muslims,Hindus,Sikhs,Christians ,etc sharing their views and talking with each other like real brothers in Shirdi and also at various Sai centers all over the world.They firmly believe that flowers may be many but worship is one.Stars may be many but light is one.Similarly paths may be different but goal is one.

    III)Caste Harmony: Shridi Sai never allowed people to have ill feelings towards the so called untouchables.He made Brahmins eat from leper's plate or untouchable's plates.When they felt loathsome to do the same He castigated them and preached them everything is Atma.If they hated them they are infact hating Him who is residing in them.People who believe in Baba should follow the same thing.Treat all mankind as brothers and live happily.Believe in brotherhood of man and fatherhood of God. I am a Sai devotee of Shri Sai Baba.The reason of my approach to Sai faith is to fill my emptiness .May be too many expectations have not been met and I have lost interest in many things including personal and buisness.
    I have been trying to pick up through the spiritual way for a while but I donot have much confidence in putting my life back to right perspective .I have been melancholic for long time without any reason.Please help me to pray to Baba because I love Him immensely and feel a void without Him. Your question is not unusual.Certain experiences ,which we call negetive, can lead us towards the Master or God.Read Shri Sai Satcharitra and you will not only get the answer, but your mind will also be peaceful.
    Think about Baba ,read about Him,gradually you will be out of your depression I lost my husband to cancer two years back.Since then I have become very insecure , mainly about my children. I pray to Shri Sai everyday but I cannot get rid of the fear for my children. Worship Shri Shirdi Sai Baba.Be sure Baba is protecting your children.Hold Him close to your heart always.Baba said "Why fear when I am there".Everyone has to leave in a predetermined time.King,beggar,saint,sinner alike.Baba will take care of your children,pray.

  4. I am a devotee of Shri Sai Baba and know that He is always with me still I do many wrong things in my life.This makes me feel guilty but I donot improve as I have a weak will power.How to overcome this?

    The fact that doing wrong things make you feel guilty means you love purity.Baba is purity personified and can control your mind in case you have full faith in Him.Continue to pray Baba.Gradually ,you will get over your weakness.Read life and teachings of Baba "Shri Sai Satcharitra". As and when I am about to commit any wrong deed why from within my heart Baba shouldnot stop me from doing so? Your conscience is Baba.You certainly hear the inner voice.Always focus your thoughts on Him and on your own conscience whenever you have any wrong thought.

  5. Why do we want to test every experience on the basis of physical evidences?

    ur intellect tells us to understand everything through the cognitive faculties .Yet our faculties are highly limited. The form of God is all pervasive.For direct experience human has to cross over the known and unknown boundaries.Ordinary limited human beings can only see and experience the physical form. The Yogis experience the subtler vehicles.One who will experience the Jivanmukta,Parammukta or Paramukta states of Baba,he will never wish to assume a human body again. Anger.

  6. I tend to loose my temper very fast,how do I improve?

    Whenever you get angry pray to Shri Sai Baba,and read His life history "Sai Satcharitra".Slowly anger will get controlled.Whenever you are angry with anyone,it is better to leave the place rather than quarelling.Baba said that he loves those people who are tolerant than those who fight. Astrology

  7. In this mundane world full of complexities of life does a Sai devotee need to take support of astrology?

    Astrologer can at best predict future in a limited way.Baba helps actively and actually.Once you have surrendered to Him He takes care ,reduces pain and increases happiness and evolves the souls.Keep His teachings and life history in mind.See Him in happiness and unhappiness both.See Him in mundane and spiritual both.Allow Him to work on you by keeping Him always in your heart. Charity

  8. In this illusionary world it is difficult to identify a genuinely needy person whom one would like to help.We see beggars in and around the temple or on streets ,and we daily read that there are many of them who are self sufficient and resort to begging only out of lack of interest in working.How should one go about helping a needy? Please advice on this and guide us what should one do.At times I wish to help someone but a thought always crosses my mind,"Is he actually needy.?

    " Everyone is needy .Everyone ,a king or a poor man is a beggar before God.Everyone prays to God for something or other.Baba said, anyone approaching you for anything is due to links of our past lives.By using your power of discrimination if you are convinced that a man is really needy then help him.In case of doubt,route it through Baba.If you wish to give Ten rupees to a needy person but are in doubt then,put that in Baba's Donation Box.Let Baba decide this,in case you are not convinced at all then just refuse politely.While doing so never abuse,threaten or misbehave with the beggar.Don't develop negetive thougths about anyone more so beggars whom destiny has punished enough.

  9. Many children are seen begging outside the temples.Should we not stop them from doing so?

    These children do not beg out of greed .It is generally a compulsion of life.They only wish that they should be get some sweet,piece of coconut or some money.They have such innocent look on their faces .In spite of such poverty there is such happiness reflecting on their faces.Those are greedy who are praying /begging for much more after making lakhs and crores in the most sinful manner.For this they do all kind of crooked deeds.It is important that such people should change their mentalities.If we have the capacity to educate and look after these children we should do so.Without help they cann't be stopped except by law.

  10. What does Sai say about compassion?

    Sai is the embodiment of compassion.He practiced and preached to love everyone including sinner,diseased,birds and beasts.He saw God in everyone and loved them.Read Sai Satcharitra for the answers .He always encouraged and blessed acts of kindness.

  11. If you cann't love you must not hate either.If one does not have the quality of compassion in Himself,how can one receibve the compassion of Sadguru? What type of human beings Baba really loves?

    Baba is in the God State.He sees himself in every one and hence loves everyone.Only if the quality of love is universally expanded in us we experience Him.Ultimately ,we will experience that Baba ,God and our self is one and the same thing Devotion.

  12. We want to give pure love to Baba but,we are not familiar with its ways ,please help us in this regard.When and how a human being can become a good devotee?

    Love cannot be organized the way most of the people think.It is a spontaneous feeling and process of heart where there is no ego.

  13. Will Sai Baba ever give his darshan to me?
    Physical darshan of a Sadguru is when he is in physical body.Later , through deep meditation one can have his darshan internally.Pray to Shri Sai always to bless you with His swaroop darshan.

  14. How do I get close to Baba?How do I feel His presence and get assured that He is with me and will always be with me?

    You have to love Him.Keep Him as an image in your heart.Serve human beings and other living species as part of Him.The process is gradual but continue to try. You have to see His presence in all.He is all the time with you but you don't know.When you will understand this totally you will surely feel His presence.

  15. I am a new devotee of Shri Sai Baba.Please tell me how do I approach Him?

    Pray to Him in any form suited to your emotions,a master,a father,a mother,a friend,etc.Loving God is the best prayer of God.Prayers at best generate love and if love is there ,formal prayers are not necessary .Read Shri Sai Satcharitra,the life history of Baba for further directions.

  16. Some times I get tears when I think of Baba.I don't know the reason for that.

    Baba sends love waves to His children all the time.This happens with thousands of people.These are tears of strength not weakness.Keep loving Baba.He will grow in you.

  17. I am very much drawn to Sai Baba,and I consider myself His devotee , but I have trouble keeping Him in mind throughout the day.I would like Him to be constantly present in my mind and heart.Does this come by His Grace only?
    Your thought process is noble and correct. Don't worry at all if you cann't keep Him in mind constantly because you have to do other things also because you have to do other things also where mind has to be applied.Baba is aware of your problem. Do as much as you can. Gradually things will improve.

  18. Many devotees give lot of importance to the miracles exhibited by saints.What is your opinion regarding this?

    What do the devotees have to do with miracles?If merely the mention of that word creates confusion, then one can guess the results it can create in society if the mental equanimity is not there.Some devotees have certainly made progress on the path of devotion by being influenced by such miracles.

  19. What is the way of offering our true service to Baba in return of so much He gives to us?

    The true service is to improve our qualities and be of some use for His cause, i.e to serve humanity around you.Baba did reveal to some people that His conciousness covered even dogs,horses , etc.

  20. When and how can we control "I"?

    One who can take complete control over "I" I.e ego,will not be born again as he would be merged with the Oversoul.By the effort of many births,good deeds and grace of the Sadguru only,one can get control over "I". One must understand this and pray to Guru to release from this. By making the life simple and surrendering to Guru, "I" diminishes slowly but surely.There are many aspects of ego like lust,hunger,anger,body,mind,they get controlled slowly. Baba's message s always tell us that there should be no ego.Ego is a destroyer and kills the spiritual progress of a person. This is fully understandable.But,there are so many instances in day to day working in the commercial life where one has to use his ego to establish his style of working or to create a positive result-oriented fear. Ego can be both be creative and destructive.By ego the biggest things are created on earth and also destroyed.To become egoless is the highest state.Baba has spoken the ultimate word that He Himself is.We ,at a much lower level of evolution can only try by taking His name.While doing a job where ego is necessary one should,still be careful not to have egoand then using it in the positive direction will not make a person slave of his own ego. One thing is certain that truth is only in what Baba says but I am not able to relate this to the above.

  21. While doing the work of Baba many obstacles come, is this to kill ego and also to instill patience and faith?

    I entirely aggree .The more work you do for Baba ,the more work will come to you, both quantitative and qualitative . At times big obstacles present themselves but they donot remain for long.It not only kills ego but builds those qualities that are essentially required to do bigger jobs for Baba.

  22. It is said that Baba replies to any question that arises in our mind .I have experienced that .I get replies through the books on Him.Is there any other way He answers our questions ?

    You are on the correct path .After reading books/printed materials on Him go on thinking and discussing with other devotees .He answers questions to us through our inner thoughts and many inscrutable ways at times.Only the onewho experiences knows.

  23. All my life I have tried to make everyone happy and all I have got in return is sorrow.Why does it happen like this?

    By doing good to others you are destroying your own "paap" and getting closer to Baba.Don't expect returns from human beings as you will get hurt.Expect it from Baba because in the right moment His blessings will descend.Pray to Baba always to keep you on right path and to make you more patient.Please be true to your nature. I lost my husband to Leukemia about an year ago.My daughter and I prayed day and night to Sai to heal him and give Him some more time.My husband was a good human being ,a devoted father and husband, and a very religious man.He even endured,first heart disease and then leukemia with great patience and courage.Why was he made to suffer?Why are prayers were not answered?How can we replace emptiness created by his death with peace. Before Baba left His body ,devotees were requesting Him to continue.Baba told the truth that even He will have to leave the body one day.Anyone born with a body will go one day.The method of departure is preordained because of past lives' actions called "prarabdha".The ultimate answer can only be given By God.'karma prarabdha'what scriptures say,is the reason for all sufferings.Further ,a certain quantum of duty is given to a person within a certain period of time on this earth.Once that is over he has to go.When the body becomes useless,by whatsoever manner to do any job for the soul,the soul departs and enters another body fit to do such work.This law of nature works on good ,the bad ,the religious,the nonbeleiver and everyone. I know the loss cannot be mitigated.But continue to pray to Baba to give peace to the soul.

  24. Is Sai Baba of Puttaparti,reincarnation of Sai Baba of Shirdi?

    That makes me confused, In the history of mankind there never has been incarnation of an incarnation.Read books on spiritual science.You will get the answer yourself.

  25. My faith in God increases when I am in trouble.Is it selfish behaviour or is it normal?

    Human Beings will always have problems in one aspect of life or the other,whether they are big or small,whether they are evil or pure.All such sufferings are correlated to earlier life's. It is better to remember God more in happier times than in sorrow,as Saint Kabir said.

  26. Our faith gets shaken up with the blow of wind how do we stop this and do not let it happen to us?

    For those who want to come closer to Baba the only way is, to keep unshakeable faith in Him under all circumstances. But ,some people come to Sadguru with a desire of worldly gains or exhibit their devotion with such expectations in their heart.Sometimes,when their desires are not fulfilled or when they have to suffer consequences of their own past actions they tend to loose their faith.In the time of any Avatar or Sadguru every wish of everyman was never fulfilled.Sadguru never fulfills those desires,which would become barrier in bringing them closer to God.There is His hand behind unfulfillment of such desires.Therefore,one who can see Baba both in pleasure and pain ,is the true devotee.The pleasure seekers are bound to deviate from the path.

  27. I have been going through a very trying time.Many times I feel that my faith is being tested ,as Baba doesn't answer my prayers.I have prayed for help and guidance ,but I feel that Baba doesn't even hear me!I know that I am supposed to learn something from all this,but it is very slow and painful lesson .How come I get no help from Baba?

    All actions played by Baba behind the scene for his devotee may not be known to the person at that time.Knowing behind the scene for his devotees may not be known to the person at that time.Knowing the past karma of the devotee ,the Sadguru quietly works on him on him .One has to have faith and patience to reap the benefits of His blessings in the due course,and also at the time ordained by Him.That is why Baba qualified the word "Shraddha" (faith) with "Saburi" (patience).One without the other cannot stand.If you read "Shri Sai Satcharitra" you will get your answers as Baba did answer these queries of devotees in His own way.

  28. I have faith in Baba ,but why isn't my child improving?

    Law of nature is the creation of God,It will control anyone,your child or anybody's child for that matter.Past lives actions effect the conditions of this life.This is the "Law of Justice" of God.But on the other hand "Law of Mercy" of God works through the Sadguru ,that is Shri Sai .Continue to pray.Help children of other people who are in distress.Baba will surely help you.

  29. The faith in Baba should never diminish.Will I be successful in achieving the same?

    Read ,think,speak,hear,write,meditate on Him.Put up your entire faculties on Him.Try and Try.

  30. I have been beleiving in Shri Sai Baba for a long time and pray to Him everyday.I have his picture and idol in the temple,in my house.Recently ,an intruder (a thief) came to my house and stole some money and things.My faith was a bit shaken because rightly or wrongly I thought Baba will protect my house from such untoward events.Should I dismiss such events like this as Baba's wish?

    Please read Shri Sai Satcharitra.It will give you answers.If one loses faith by entry of intruder in his house,then one should lose faith in himself when bad thoughts enter his mind leading to bad activities.Bad thoughts are like a thief who steals away our good quality and virtues.The true devotee will see the Sadguru in both good and bad.Please try strengthening your faith and have patience if you want to progress.

  31. I would like to ask why Baba did not believe in fasting or starving oneself without food?

    No mother would like her child to fast for her.So it was Baba ,who took care of His children without giving them the trouble of rigrous religious practices.Fasting of the body is of no use if the mind is not fasting.What if mind is thinking about worldly or negetive thoughts while undergoing fast?It has no meaning.On the other hand,if fasting of body alone could give spiritual or religious benefit,then so many people dying out of hunger in continents like Africa and Asia,would have realized God.The concept of fasting in Hinduism is to prepare the body in the first stage to be disciplined and tough,and then gradually to go to subtler levels.In case of Bhakti Marg,only self surrender to the Guru is necessary,He takes care of everything else.

  32. Who is God?

    This is a question the entire humanity on this earth has beeb trying to understand since the time immemorial.Yet nobody can exactly say who is God.Even the greatest spiritual leaders in world,the Vedas and the other riligious scriptures have admitted their limitation.Seers try to understand God from his manifested aspects - both living(Sakara) and non living (Nirakara).After realising the manifested aspects like stars,planets,living,non living beings get into the non manifested (Nirakara) aspects of God to certain extent .It is said that God has manifested only one-fourth of His energy and the three -fourth of God's energy is not manifested.How then to understand the three-fourth non manifested God is the question when the entire humanity has not been able to understand even the one-fourth manifestation ?

  33. How to understand God?

    Every soul in the process of evolution ,life after life , tries to understand God slowly.Infact ,this understanding of God ,more and more, is the real purposeof evolution of souls.If man is better equipped with the cerebral capacity than a monkey,it is for understanding God at the first stage and then realizing God at the ultimate stage that has been given the capacity or nature has given these capacities to Him.Man is a superior animal only because it has a better physical and mental machinery but because he has the capacity to imagine ,accept seek and realise God.All relegions ,scriptures have prescribed the methods on how one should try to understand God.These are called different paths.All the realized souls and saints have also spoken same .Baba used to tell His devotees at Shirdi that there are many paths to reach God .One of the path goes through Shirdi ,meaning thereby to follow Him.Any devotee following the path shown by Shri Sai Nath Maharaj will certainly understand and realize God.

  34. Why do we attribute the human form to God?

    Because it is impossible to comprehend the form of God,only through concepts and imagination.Therefore,through symbolic and manifested form we can have the personal experience of His form.God has been incarnating in human form to make His identity easier to us.

  35. How does one take out time for the "Guru Path" under the constraint of time in ordinary life?

    Living an ordinary life has been difficult in every age,not in the present time only.Leading an ordinary life means going along the social and family life.It is easy for those who have left home and taken to ascetic way of life,but it is a greater problem to follow this path while living in physical world looking after the family and social commitments.We are searching for 'Guru Path' to find solution to this problem only.This becomes easy and there is not much difficulty in it. Only will power and divine inspiration is required.In the first stage nobody can take 'Guru Path' completely.It requires a reading of books on this subject ,reading the life stories of Gurus,keeping purity in one's conduct etc., gradually the thoughts of Sadguru will grow in his inner self.Under this condiion he will find a Guru somewhere .More correctly he will draw the attention of the Guru who has the divine capacity to see through merits and demerits of everyone and the thought process of all his devotees.It is said that the disciple cannot find a Guru ,but the Perfect Master finds out his disciple certainly.As Baba said ,"I draw my devotees from thousand of miles".In life full of difficulties it is a true endeavor to develop the qualities of compassion,forgiveness and service.Selfless service is the goal of Guru.It may be concluded that initially one should begin with obeying the Guru for smaller duties given to Him,and gradually one should move ahead for bigger jobs.While undergoing life's struggle whatever qualities one develops those remain permanently with Him and become a part of His soul.These qualities are carried to the next life.In the next life also he will be getting the help of Guru to evolve further.

  36. What qualities a man should develop to evolve as a disciple and how?

    The quality of being a Guru as well as being a disciple is inherent in every individual.In childhood parents should give the child the elementry education of conduct,behaviour and culture.As he grows up he goes to the school and college and learns from the teacher.In the normal course of life also one learns a lot from somebody or else.As far as it relates to be disciple of a spiritual or religious Guru,it has its own tradition.The first necessity to be a disciple is to have complete faith in Guru that whatever the guru is doing that is in his(the disciple's) own interest.Guru should also be the one who thinks of the welfare of the disciple only.The second thing is that as far as possible one should follow the words said by the Guru and the instructions given by Him.If the Guru says "be kind and feed the poor ",then one should do it as much as his capacity permits.If there are problems in the path told by the Guru then they should be conveyed to Him.The true Guru will tell the solution of those problems under the prevailing circumstances.No Guru should like that one should abandon everything else to become his disciple.Guru will indicate such a course that is suitabke in the complex world.

  37. In today's age there are so many gurus around.How does one know if one has come across the true Guru?

    Everybody is in search of a Guru,somewhere or other - and so should it be.It is said in "Guru Gita" that the way a bee goes from flower to flower in search of honey,the aspirant should also go from one Guru to another.However,once he finds his Sadguru,then he should follow Him with single mindedness .But all Gurus are not necessarily 'Sadgurus'.Sadgurus are those who are able to join 'Atma' to 'Parmatma' and who has the capability to protect the devotee under all circumstances.There are very few Sadgurus on the earth.Once the Sadguru is met there remains no need to search for a Guru.One who aspires for a Sadguru must strive hard.Someday he will be able to draw the attention of the Sadguru towards Himself.Thereafter ,through some medium he will reach him or draw the disciple by his own inscrutable ways.

  38. While treading the Guru Path we are bound to commit mistakes,how and when should we convey them to the Guru?

    Human Being is bound to commit mistakes.The Sadguru knows that his disciple will make a mistake in the game of 'maya'.Sadguru remains alert to stop them from doing so.Because of his own mistake if the disciple falls into the danger then 'Sadguru' directly or indirectly helps him out.Baba used to say. "Know it that wherever you are and whatever you do I am fully awre of that ".Sai Baba's life history shows that he was omniscient.Guru knows how to take His disciple ahead or stop him from committing mistakes.We certainly get protection of the Guru for the mistakes unknowingly done by us,but we should try that the mistakes knowingly committed should not be repeated.Sometimes we are not able to follow the Guru Path.Guru doesnot feel bad about it.He is beyound the gunas of anger and hatred.He only has compassion in Him.He watches the true intention of the disciple to move ahead on the Guru Path.

  39. What should one do to become a perfect disciple?

    If the will power is strong and there is complete surrender for the Guru then He keeps the disciple with Him despite His mistakes. To become a perfect disciple one has to take in the complete power of the guru and be a guru himself.But this is the highest achievement any disciple can think of in his spiritual evolution.Sadgurus do not make disciple rather they attempt to produce Sadguru only.They evolve the soul of the disciple to their own level.This state is very high,and man himself becomes a perfect disciple when he receives the capacity of a Guru.But,before this without loosing our patience ,without setting the time-limit ourselves,without carving out a path for ourselves,as it normally happens in the world ,we should be completely surrendered to the Guru.First of all,we should be within His aura,then come near Him,have close bonds with Him,and gradually should do all duties given by Him.With a bond of pure love withSadguru one will evolve spiritually.

  40. Heaven lies at the feet of Guru.When and How one can experience this?

    In the lifetime of the Guru,worshipping and serving His feet is said to be one out of nine methods of devotion.After the Guru takes 'Samadhi' I.e leaves His physical body,one should meditate on his feet.Not only feet but one should meditate ,according to Baba, from feet to headand from head to feet.To keep the feet of Guru in one's heart relates to the attitude of serving Him.Here we donot bear the attitude of companionship rather the attitude of being at His service .The worship of His feet means following the words of the Guru and obeying His every command without questioning.

  41. I have been told that it is essential to have a living master to evolve spiritually.How true is it?

    To have a living master is good.My personal experience is,if one prays to baba even without a physical Master ,one can evolve.I donot have any physical Master nor did I ever try.Baba is the Param Sadguru.

  42. How should a householder involve himself in the activities related to Baba while discharging hos professional anf family duties?

    A householder has to take out time for Baba's work while discharging all the duties with perfection towards his family.He should make his family life simple.The lifestyle should be kept simple so that it can be handled easily.By organizing the daily routine properly try to minimize the time spent on it,so that more and more time can be gained for Baba's work.The work related to the profession and duties should be organized in such a manner that while doing every work the mind is completely free of the burden of other things.This is possible only when one is properly organized.Whatever work you do concentrate on it completely and finish it sincerely and properly.One should use time for every smallest as well as biggest work with equal sincerity.Work should be attempted with a holistic view because God is Whole.If each and every work in life is done with faith,perfection and completeness then one experiences the closeness with God.Make Him your companion every moment while doing any work mundane or spiritual.

  43. How do I progress spiritually side - by-side my household duties?

    Spiritualism and materialism always go side by side particularly for a worldly man.One cannot be put aside for the other because both are created by God.See Baba's play in both these aspects.Both aspects have to be taken care of by following the path shown by Baba.You have to make it useful by doing the smallest acts and the biggest acts.Pray to Shirdi Sai.He will surely bless you.Materialism limits the thinking and actions of a man.On the other hand Spiritualism leads to viewing the whole universe as a family - a single house.We learn the traits of love and co-operation from our own house and society,keeping faith in Baba and patience as well.Performances of your households duties are necessary at this stage for the growth of your conciousness for your future evolution.

  44. I want to know how to manage time and space shared with other family members while remaining faithful to my spiritual duties?

    If one is not getting solitude,that means nature or God or Sadguru wants him/her to experience living with others and adjusting with circumstances.We can always find solitude in our hearts ,while traveling before sleeping and immediately after waking up.Think of Baba at all these moments and any free moment you get whereever you are.

  45. Is there a past life?Did Baba believe in it?

    Yes.If you read Shri SaiSatcharitra,you will find Baba speaking about the past lives of many people.He not only spoke about the past births of human beings but even of other species like frog,lizard etc.It is because of incomplete relationships of the past life that people come in contact with each other in the later lives.The payment made by human beings to settle Karmik debts of past lives creates happiness or unhappiness .Baba had even referred to a lady as his sister in one of His earlier lives.Unless we are prepared to believe that all our actions origin and end in one life and that there is nothing after death ,and also there was no future life then one question remains unanswered-why did the most impartial ,all merciful God gave birth to people in different conditions and with different capacities as a result of which some enjoyed more and some suffered more.If there is no other logic of such differentiation between human beings and other animals,then God cannot be seen as an impartial and all merciful entity.

  46. Could you please tell us where our soul goes after death?

    Soul is a subtle energy form.It remains in that form after death in the sphere of sbtle energy.It evolves slowly after experiencing the subtle world till one is reborn.

  47. Is it true that every soul has a mission in life?

    Yes.Nature has already prepared a blue print of our lives just as we ,within our limited intelligence ,prepare blue prints before constructing a house etc.Every man has a mission to fulfil and each life on earth exists as long as the mission continues.

  48. What is the actual aim of life?

    What are we doing on earth? The actual aim of life is to realize one's own soul or Atma which is divine.Once one realizes this then he will not be born again.We are all experiencing worldly life,necessary to evolve us.

  49. Is being rich and having comforts of life,so called materialistic possessions, a wrong goal to attain?Does it take us away from God?

    Can we be closer to God even while concentrating in our materialistic progress? God reflects both in material and spiritual ventures.Without a material body how can one become spiritual?Being rich is not a sin unless richness is derived through sinful means and money is being spent in a sinful manner.Rise materialistically but use material earnings for the cause of others to the extent possible by you.

  50. I would like to clear the doubt in my mind as to whether Baba believed in the philosophy of staying vegetarian?And if not,what logic was behind adopting non-vegetarianism?

    There is no evidence in the available sources on Baba that He Believed in staying vegetarian,rather there is a mention in Shri Sai Satcharitra that Baba cooked non- vegetarian food for some of His devotees. In the ultimate anaysis human beings have no right to kill any species for enjoyment,particularly when they have been given the intelligence to know that God exists in every one. Animals don’t have this intelligence .This is Baba's basic preaching ,but since all devotees cannot change overnight,therefore,they are to be handled accordingly.Simply being vegearian or non-vegetarian doesnot necessarily make a man spiritual or otherwise . In the world more than 3/4 population is non-vegetarian.Did these countries not produce spiritual leaders including Jesus & Prophet.We should strive to be a vegetarian not only to avoid eating of flesh (even living vegetables have life), but because one should not be party to killing of other species.As per Hindu theory this Karma will effect him adversely.Besides ,vegetarian food is easier to digest.

  51. Is taking non-vegetarian food wrong or sinful?

    No,because "jeevah jeevah khadati" - one creature feeds on another creature.But there are certain foods ,which are natural ,like the child who is nourished by his mother on her breast-feed.Human being eats vegetables and after his death his disintegrated body returns to the soil and becomes a part of the whole vegetable world.But killing an animal means we have finished the conciousness which had reached a higher level,and eating the flesh of a human means finishing the conciousness which had reached yet higher level than animals.Saints who have reached a highly evolved state of conciousness ,do not eat anything.Upasani Maharaj did not eat anything for one year.Some saints bring about such changes in their organic system that they can nourish themselves on the direct energy from sun.

  52. If God is one,why should there be different paths?

    God manifests Himself in different forms.Even as a human form he manifests Himself at different places,at different times with different levels of conciousness.Groups of souls having different levels of conciousness are born in different places and times.These groups of souls are so born because they are required to experience certain common religious ,social,geographic etc situations necessary for their evolution.For example ,a group of souls may be born from parents belonging to one religion or in a certain country.In the next life ,to have different experiene ,some of these souls may be born of parents having a different country or nationality.Many Hindus became Buddhists when Lord Buddha came and many Hindus came and many Hindus came back to the folds of Hinduism later at the time of Shankaracharya.Therefore ,there are different ways of evolution of the souls .Ultimately, all these paths converge at one point I.e God realization or in God from where they all emanated.

  53. While treading the path towards Baba if man feels surrounded by despair ,what should he do about it?

    I have said in one of my poems -"Jab Dil Udaas ho to Sai ka naam lena" I.e "When one feels depressed at times ,while facing the pain and miseries of life.But ,if such feeling of pain and misery is true ,so is the feeling of pain and misery is true , so is the feel;ing of joy and bliss too.One should see Sai in both the situation.In happiness without wasting too much time rejoicing ifwe help others in getting the same happiness in Baba's name or work for the cause of Baba then the happiness that we derive will be more lasting .Physical happiness is momentory and once it is gone it brings sorrow as mind has a tendency to ask for the same or more happiness always which is not possible in human life.Whenever you are in sorrowful situation remember Baba's words."See what comes next".Keeping in touch with Baba internally and thinking of Him reduce orrow.By reading Sai Satcharitra ,by singing Baba's bhajan s the sorrow gets certainly lessened.In bad times one must read about Baba as much as one can,meditate on Him,chant His name ,sing His devotional songs and help other people who are undergoing pain and misery.

  54. We the dwellers of darkness when see the first ray of light get so perturbed that we want to go backto darkness.What do we do at such times?
    Sadguru cannot leave His devotees under any condition the devotee realizes it or not.That is why Baba used to say that one should pray to Him with Shraddha and Saburi.Whenever the grace of Sai descends upon anybody usually it is seen that this negetive qualities reduce and good qualities grow.From those initial experiences only,they think that they have reached somewhere or they have achieved spiritual knowledge.Takin this initial state as the final state such people start behaving like a Guru themselves.Many people cannot progress because of this and try to live the life in a dramatic manner.After sometime if the devotees face any adverse situation,such Gurus turn the other way.In such situations various reactions are seen of some people.The water stored in an unbaked pitcher breaks down,similarly their faith also gets easily broken down Those who conduct themselves in a normal way after receiving Baba's grace at the first instance and never exhibit their devotion, they gradually achieve closeness with Baba.Nourishing spiritual and religious ambition is a limitation in the path of spiritual evolution.

  55. How do I get courage to walk on the right path and how do I know what is the right way?

    Read Sai Satcharitra carefully and regularly.You will get all the answers.All spiritual books and biographies of Masters basically deal with such answers.

  56. What do I do to become a better human being?
    Examine your conduct daily and try to improve upon your qualities .Read Shri Sai Satcharitra and learn from examples and Baba's advices.

  57. What are the traits of a perfect man and how to achieve this?

    He who is completely liberated from all earthly entangements is a perfect man.He is not limited by any place ,group ,system ,laws of nature and has got full control on all base elements in mind,such as desires,lust,anger ,etc.He is dispassionate under all circumstances and his vanity of being a man has also deserted him completely.Many sages who wereproud of being a man could evolve spiritually only when their ego was anihilated completely.There is the example of Vishwamitra and others. Please guide me as to how to stop worrying allthe time and be at peace with myself? When you are worried think of Baba and remember His saying- "I take care of my children ,no matter how far they may be".Pray Him always.

  58. Does Baba think it is right to silently bear the injustice and let the people do what they want to do to you or does He think it is right to leave such a situation and look for peace,so one can think about Him and become what he wants you to be?

    Baba always said people who tolerate ,I am with them.But avoid the negetive situations as far as you can.Pray to Him and internally He will lead you in the right path.Save your valuable time out of useless arguments and fights in order to serve Him.

  59. What is our role in helping to spread peace globally ?How can a normal office-goer like me contribute to this cause?

    To be global spiritual worker at first one has to develop the qualities of tolerance,love to fellow beings and greed-lessness.Generate peace in oneself first,then only you can spread peace to others.This peaceful attitude and tolerance need to be practiced in the materialistic and the official world as well.All of us can certainly play our roles when we are ready.

  60. In what state are the Sadgurus?

    Sadgurus are human beings who are in pure divine state ,because they posses all the attributes of God in themselves.Vasudev Krishna was God incarnate who had assumed a human body.What is Sai Baba in reality ?So far I am unable to say this with certainity.Without the direct experience of Baba I donot want to infer anything imaginatively and emotionally.When I will have a direct experience of the true form of Baba I will certainly tell.But this is for sure that Baba was in a paramukta state and was beyond life and death nd had devine powers to control elementsof nature and lives of millions of people at His will.

  61. What is the role of Sadguru in our life?

    Sadguru gives the ability of God realization.His first function is to give the experience of attaining the state of "Pramhans" to human being.Without the grace of Sadguru it is impossible to achieve such state.One in billions can go beyond this state .'Paramukti' and 'turiyavastha' can be attained with great difficulty.Sadguru removes all the impediments in the path of spiritual evolution of the human being.Sadguru breaks all the concepts caused by sheer intellect.All concepts are symbol of ignorance.When ignorance is dispelled his inner knowledge gets illuminated itself.The true knowledge is vielded by all the concepts.Therefore ,it is necessary to shed them.One who thinks that he is the most intelligent person,Sadguru will wipe out his ego of intellect till he admits that his intellect is full of follies.Sadguru always works upon the devotees so that human being should transcend over all his limitations and attain a limitless state.

  62. Is there any difference between an Avataar and Sadguru?If yes,then what is the difference between their divine play?

    They both have the same purpose and same methods.Only level of functioning and human groups on whom they work may differ.Both give a mighty thrust to the growth of human civilization.Only this can be told in short.

  63. Is it true that Sadguru takes the sufferins of every creature?

    The Sadgurus are without any past Karma bindings.The seeds of all past Karma are burnt.They are in a state of Karmik vaccum.Therefore ,the effects of Karma of anyone coming into their contact enter into that vaccum.This is true whether one know it or not.This work is carried out for Sadgurus,for all souls coming into their contact. in any manner.Whether human being wants it or not,is also not material because the law of compassion of nature working through the Sadguru works spontaneously.When a horse was beaten up,Baba's back turned black and blue with beatings ,this is only a small instance.Whenever Baba's devotee is in pain , a thought or bhava in heart or we utter a word from our mouth, a vibrationor ray instantly reaches the Sadguru.As Baba used to say "Be wherever you are and do whatever you like,I will know it even if I am thousands of miles away from you".

  64. Those who become the constant cause of our suffering and misery,is it not proper to want the penalty for such people for their wrong doings? Who are we to award the consequence to anybody for his doings?

    This work lies with God only.Everybody will bear the consequence of his actions.Many a times a human being misconceives himself as the cosmic law giver .Justice is delivered by God only.Because of our limited intellect we think that we are being subjected to injustice.We tend to forget that we had also committed injustice towards somebody.Many times we become proud of our strength and the capability and try to turn the situations in our favour.If one weilds power then that should be used to conquer one self.If one wants to emerge victorious then one should conquer those causes due to which enemity and aggression rise in heart. No matter how many hardships come in life ,one should bear the burnt of the circumstances with much forbearance.It needs great amount of inner strength to be generous towards those who consider our enemy.Today,if we save ourselves from some of the causes of aggression ,tomorrow there will be a new set of causes to generate aggression.Thus ,we will be left entangled in the cycles of causes and their effects. Sadguru wants to liberate us.He wants to lead us to a place where after reaching all the problems come to an end and a fountain of bliss begins to flow.But we are stuck up in the little thorny bushes of this path and get trobled by their pricks .We are not prepared to bear little pain a little more.We want that Sadguru should remove those thorns ,which causes us little pain.One should not waste one's own and Sadguru's time.Why not hold on to the theme of devotion and forbearance in our heart and meditate at the feet of Sadguru then he is not to be told of our miseries.He knows all about his devotees.He is ever ready to bear the burden of his devotees.

  65. When Baba resides within us then why don't we reach Him?

    God,Guru,Atma are the same eternal conciousness in the ultimate reality.Baba is within us in subtle form in our soul-known as 'Antarsakshi' -one who knows everything about us.He is within us in the form of self illumination.He is in our mind greates noble thoughts.We do not have that power or inner sight which can see Him in the light form .Yogis after effort of many lives get that inner sight by which they can see Baba's swaroop in the form of light within them.Sometimes we do experience Baba in our Atma out of feeling of devotion and love but,mostly we imagine Baba in mental form.We keep thinking of Baba's photo ,words,His works.Moving ahead step by step we can reach His true form,when we will be egoless,have no more desires,become totally detatched ,take control over lust,anger,hatred etc.When our heart will be blemishless and mind will be calm ,then only Baba's actual form can be experienced.As the sky doesnot reflect water when it is disturbed by waves similarly ,until , mind will be calm,then only Baba's actual form will be experienced.As the sky doesn’t reflect on water when it is disturbed by waves,similarly,wntil ,mind is completely stilled and get absorbed in Atma,it is not possible to see Baba's form in it. One has to strive for this.Only Sadguru can instruct about that path.Therefore ,one should continuously pray Him and follow the commands given by Him.

  66. Knowingly or unknowingly ,with the body or mind we commit many sins,can we control this?

    Committing a sinful act knowingly or unknowingly are two different things.If any sin is committed knowingly it is certainly much more serious because we are aware that it is not right but still do it.If we are walking on the road and an insect gets crushed under our feet or if we accidently hit someone while driving on road,they are not so sinful acts as as the ones done knowingly and conciously. The latter type of sins also fall into two categories - physically,by direct acts involving body and mentally ,by thinking sinful acts like lust,anger,violence etc.Very few people can actually understand what the final consequences of any of their actions will be because what is considered to be good today may turn out to be bad tomorrow. We must pray to Baba that He should give us the capacity to discriminate the good from bad.He should give us the wisdom.We must pray to Him to take us from darkness towards light so that we are able to take just and right steps.We should read the life history of Saints to understand how they conducted themselves on this path in human form and how some ordinary human beings realized God by their faith ,patience and self exertion

  67. God internally knowing it very well that we are committing wrong deeds ,why can't we stop ourselves from bad action?

    Despite all our efforts if we are not able to control it then it could be the effect of causes carried out from previous births. What happens spontaneosly is predestined.We don't wish accidents to take place even then accidents happen at times without our mistake.The laws of nature are inevitable.Our sanskars or impressions come from many births and they can only be removed slowly.The Sadguru says-'I have no objection even if you commit mistakes thousand times.Because I know that you will commit a mistake.Such are your impressions through thousands of births.But I expect only sincere efforts to evolve in the direction of inner transformation through a process of self analysis and honest actions. Through this process you will evolve ".Sadguru knows this that human beings are bound to commit mistakes.Sadgurus are the mountain of forgiveness and peace.Therefore their grace is necessary for evolving out of such a situation.With Gurukripa inner strength of mind will evolve to stop us from committing sinful acts.

  68. Why do calamities happen in some of the places and not in others,what is the logic? When it is said that God is One and sustains everyone then why does He not prevent hunger?

    A simplistic approach to the problem which can be answered but cann't be explained within a small space and time.God is so expanded,multiplied in different forms that it is not possible to understand without exerting oneself. Some people tried to get an answer the whole life or for few lives.The Prarabdha Karma makes all the difference. The same man who asks why there is problem to human beings when God is there ,can also ask as to why the human beings should kill animals,birds and use them as their labourers.

  69. My question is that why do I find all devotees in pain.I see that each one of them suffering from some or other kind of problem.Why are they suffering being so close to Baba?

    All devotees are certainly not in pain.A real devotee will surely not consider the worldly pain as pain. He will consider his seperation from Sadguru as a pain and will always try to be close to Him at the cost of the whole world.He is always in a state of ecstasy.Usually people with pain come to Baba.There is a small number who come when they have no problems.Human beings have always treated God in this manner.But Baba takes care of them. They are not suffering because they come to Baba.Had they not come they would have suffered the more.The support of a Sadguru is never known so easily.

  70. There are many noble people in this world who always help others in their lifetime but still have to suffer a lot.Why does it happen while so many sinners live happily?Kindly answer.

    Sinners don't necessarily live happily and good ones do not necessarily suffer.Past life actions at times create adverse results in this life for good people. Similarly for sinners of this life,at times good actions of the earlier life act positively.We should continue to be good with faith in Baba.

  71. Religions are different but is there anything common in them ,I mean are there any common parameters?

    "Dharma" is from a Sanskrit root (Dhaa) which means to hold and alsoto think.Religions therefore try to hold together not only different human beings but also the other aspects of nature like plants ,animals,birds and all living aspects.As ordained by nature they live together and are inter-dependent ,therefore these must be held in a fine balance.The principles for holding them for the greatest good of them for the longest period of time is known as Dharma.The concepts of Hindu universalism, the Muslim brotherhood,the Christian service,the Buddhist tolerance are nothing but attempts to bring out and establish the common denominators of togetherness. Human beings are aware of these but lose their path from time to time when these Incarnations again come and re-establish I have been facing a lot of problems in my life ,lately I am finding it difficult even to concentrate on prayers .I used to keep Baba's photo in my hand and keep talking to Him.I feel He is the only near and dear I have. Always keep talking to Baba mentally even if you are not able to worship formally or praying to Him with concentration.These difficulties are but a test of your faith and mental capacity. I do the "Naam Jaap ' of Sai's name daily.My problem is that I cannot meditate.Please give me a method or instruction whereby I You need not meditate.Do the "Naam Jaap" alwaysas much as possible. can meditate on Him.

  72. I want to do one week paraayana of Shri Satcharitra .Kindly tell me how to go about it?

    Begin on a Thursday after worship of Baba.Finish on the seventh day.Feed some needy or poor people after it is completed.During paraayan be calm and concentrate on Baba.

  73. How do I focus on the physical form of Baba when I know that He is not living in His physical body now?

    Focus on the photograph of Shri Shirdi Sai.Initially on His physical form as you see in photo.gradually you will be able to perceive Him in subtle form.Meditate on Him consistently,then He may reveal His real self to you. The method of meditation is given in Shri Sai Satcharitra, I feel an awakening within,there is a lessening of desire and a joyful contentment in all that arises.I feel truly blessed.I have prayed for two years nothin more.

  74. Pray to Shirdi Sai,the Master.You are on the right path.Divine help is received at times through prayers. it a wishful thinking or is any prayer of mine really coming true?

    Honest prayers give joy,hopefulness and purity.Please continue.

  75. Sai yantra is available commonlyis it advisable to do siddhi with it?

    Please do not go after Siddhi.Go after Bhakti and love for Baba.Shri Sai never prescribed for use of Sai yantra.

  76. I am a medico preparing for my post graduate exam.I would like to know how to meditate on Sai daily and regularly?

    You can pray for His blessings .He is the giver of even themundane things like the result of an exam. Meditate on His sitting figure from feet to head and then from head to feet.After some time you will be able to concentrate on His full figure and internalize His form.

  77. When and How and where should one practice "Gayatri Mantra"?
    Gayatri Mantra is the main mantra that should be remembered by every Hindu for that matter every human being. This mantra is for meditating upon God and also for welfare of the Universe.This is a mantra and a prayer too. Therefore,it can be practiced with much ease and spontaneity.One should chant or meditate on this while facing towards Sun. In the morning facing towards east,in noon facing towards west,one should sit in the corner of a room or at One should repeat a certain number of mantras daily and gradually increase this number.During jaap one can either externally or internally concentrate on the statue of Gayatri or on sun or Gurudev.Gayatri is Parashakti from whom the universes evolve.

  78. By what method Baba's worship should be done at home?

    There is a basic difference between the worship of Baba done at home or in the temple.The 'Praan Pratistha' is not usually done of the idol at home ,usually His photograph is worshipped.Therefore any suitable method can be adopted to worship Baba. It is necessary to simplify the method of worship.Most of the external rites and rituals are artificial if they do not evoke inner Bhakti Offering a single flower with Bhava and with unshakable faith in Sadguru is sufficient.If we are away from home for some reason ,we can still do Baba's worship the same way as we do at home mentally,sitting in a place.At home this work can be assigned to anybody ,Baba is beyond any discrimination of religion ,caste or creed , small or big ,rich or poor. It is said in the Vedas that all the deities are inherent in the Sadguru.So there is nothing wrong if Sadguru is worshipped in the form and manner of diety . Sikh devotees sacrificed their lives happily for their Gurus because it was there belief that Guru is eternal and will always be with them. It is absolutely necessary to have immense faith towards the Sadguru.

  79. In which direction Baba's idol or image should be installed?

    Baba can be worshipped or installed in any direction.In Shirdi the direction of Dwarkamai is southward,which os known as the direction of Yama-the Lord of death.However,East or North or North East direction are the best.

  80. Is it necessary to prepare something different to offer to Baba?Is there any particular food item required for offering to Baba?

    Whatever is cooked in the house for ourselves the same should be offered to Baba and distribute among others.Whatever is offered to Him with pure 'BHAVA' will be acceptable to Him.In certain forms of worship offering non-vegetarian food to the diety is prescribed.It is only our mental yearning or "bhava" behind such offering which is accepted by the Sadguru.

  81. The devotees desire to be with you always.When they are away from from you they feel deprived.What is your reaction to this?

    One who has taken Baba in his heart will never feel deprived or depressed .It is not necessary that a devotee should always remain near His Guru in gross terms.The devotees who are physically very close to Guru may be very far from Him and those who are physically distant may be very close to the Guru.The important thing is that what is the mental state of a devotee towards His Spiritual Master?In my thoughts there is no one else but Baba .Those who are close to Baba ,I am close to them.I go along the Bhava or mental attitude of people.

  82. What is one's external appearance is meaningless for me.The only important thing is that how single pointedly the devotee is devoted towards Baba ,and what is his level of thought and feeling?

    Besides this nothing else holds any importance.This is what Baba has said number of times.

  83. Many people come to you for a solution to their problems.Knowing the fact that their problems are outcome of their own 'karmas',you pray to God for helping them.What is your reaction to this?

    I can only pray to Baba to solve the problems of His devotees .My only appeal to Sadguru is that if He bestows His Grace upon the distressed devotees then their sufferings would go away.Rest is on Sadguru or God.He will do as He may like to do.When anybody remembers God with a pure heart ,in that state of 'Bhava ' he gets away from the shadows of bad effects.My effort is that the devotee should be inspired towards the right path and surrender to the Master.