following experiences were sent to Shri Annasaheb Dabholkar by Shri
Vinayak Sitaram Mulherkar for publishing in the Sai Leela.
was working as a Head Clerk in the Thane Forest Division and my office
was in Bandra. I used to travel from Lower Parel to Bandra by the daily
passenger train. Many of my
friends in Bandra used to visit Shirdi for Baba’s Darshan. They used to bring ‘Udi’, ‘Prasad’ and
other articles, and occasionally gave Udi and Prasad to
me. Some would put Udi on my forehead. Even though I accepted the
same, Due to my inadequate knowledge and viewpoint I would say I do not
believe in such things. Unless Baba inspires me, I will not visit
days passed in the same circumstances. Many devotees would visit Shirdi
and describe Baba’s inexplicable Leelas. Consequently people
from Mumbai, Bandra, Vasai, Virar, Agashi, Dahanu, and Umbergaon also
started visiting Shirdi for Darshan. But, I stuck to my resolve
of not going unless Baba inspired me.
some days, it so happened that one Thursday (the day I used to fast), I
finished my regular routine and went to sleep. I awoke with the feeling
that I should visit Baba today. Earlier
at dawn, I got a divine vision which I cannot express. I took my morning tea, left for office at 8 a.m. and took the
signatures of the boss on some important papers. When I asked him for leave, he promptly gave it to me saying - ‘‘Okay,
I shall give you leave for 3-4 days since you are going for a good
cause.’’ He also added, ‘‘I too have to visit a relative in
Nasik; so we can leave together in the same train.’’ I came home
around 11 a.m. and told my wife, ‘‘Today Baba has inspired me to go;
so I shall be leaving by the afternoon train.’’ She immediately
agreed; but was apprehensive about the long distance, unknown place,
nobody to go together with, no known person in a faraway place as well
as the chilly weather. Though all these points were valid, the
inspiration in my mind took precedence; and so I completed the rituals
of the Thursday fast and left.
reached Kopargaon Station in the morning. While inquiring about a Tonga
to take me to Shirdi, I met my old friend Dr. R. R. Chaubal, who had
alighted from the same train. Since
Shirdi was our destination and meeting Baba our aim, our happiness knew
no bounds. When the Tonga reached the banks of the Godavari, I
met my childhood friend Shri Gajananrao Kanekar, who inquired about the Tonga
and sent his sepoy to bring us home as his guests.
Soon the Tonga reached his bungalow and he was very happy
to see us. He took down our luggage and pressed us to stay.
In the end after partaking some tea and light refreshments we
requested him to let us leave as we wished to take Sai’s Darshan
at Aarati time; and so we had to reach there soon and so could
not prolong our stay.
we left and reached Shirdi about 30-45 minutes before Aarati
time. We stayed in Kakasaheb Dikshit’s Wada. We met Kakasaheb
and he made all the arrangements for us. In a little while we went for
the Aarati. I experienced great bliss upon Baba’s Darshan
and an elation
when we both went to take Baba’s leave (as we both wished to go to
Pune), Baba asked the Doctor, ‘‘One of my devotees in Bandra is
taking treatment from you. Has his fever subsided and is he feeling
better now ?’’ When Baba did not know about Dr. Chaubal being a
doctor and practicing in Bandra, yet He asked about His devotee’s
well-being, Dr. Chaubal was amazed. This strengthened our belief that
Baba was an incarnation of God.
meeting with Baba. It just proves how much Baba cared for His
devotees’ welfare and that He could read their minds and give
appropriate hints that He knew what was in their minds. Though my wife
had some valid reservations about my visit to Shirdi, yet there were no
hitches in my trip to take Sai’s Darshan.
experience : My wife used to say that since I had made several
trips to Shirdi, I should take the family at least once.
once I took them along. When we went for Darshan, my wife sat
amongst the ladies assembled there. When Baba described the daily
household routine of family life, my wife realized it was a narration of
her own life, and experienced untold happiness which cannot be
explained. Baba also advised as to how one should behave. My wife became
such an ardent devotee that she always said, ‘‘Ask Baba and do what
He says.’’ So, once I asked Him about my daughter’s wedding.
‘‘What you have in mind is the best and the marriage will be
fixed there. The girl will live happily ever after.’’ The girl was
married to the boy as decided and is living in luxury and happiness.
Baba had blessed my wife by putting His hand on her head, and she
remembers it vividly.
Vinayak Sitaram Mulherkar
Leela Year I, Ashvin Shaké 1845 / vol. 8 Translated into English by
Jyoti Ranjan Raut
8/A Kakad Estate, 106 Sea Face Road, Worli, Mumbai - 400 018.