Writing on blogs is always a joyful act for me but today i have my eyes moist to write this blog post. Readers of the blog are familiar to legendary author Shri Suresh Chandra Gupta. His books were eye-opener in real sense. What actually is “devotion” has been defined by him. How and in what way a person, after treading on path of devotion has to act, can be learnt from his writings. In fact his contribution to Shirdi Sai Baba’s awareness is commandable since he was the most instrumental person in construction of Shirdi Sai Baba temple of Lodhi Road in New Delhi, which is considered as first and foremost temple of Lord Shirdi Sai Baba in northern India. I have read and heard from many devotees that they found their real God/Guru in that temple.
Yesterday around 9 P.M. i received call from one of my dearest Sai brothers to give me sad news of Shri. Gupta ji passing away. I was in shock to hear this sad news. He was not keeping well since last two months, unable to move, walk by himself but from last two three days his health was deteriorating continuously. Still at the age of 87, his memory was very sharp and he remembered each and every person he met in his life even once. Though he was literally in pain, he did not disclose where and how much the pain was. He was mentally prepared for his end with no fear in mind. All the time he seemed to be merged in Lord Sai Baba. Following is a mail from a devotee who was present at the time he breathed his last:
I am just sharing you the sad news about the demise of our respected Sai devotee Shri Suresh Chandra Gupta ji. He died today (Octt. 16, 2011, Sunday) around 8 p.m. at his own house: Sai Sadan, F-5, Green Park Main, New Delhi . He was 88.
It was a coincidence that I went to see him in the evening and was messaging his left hand sitting near him. He was just taken to sit on the chair from bed. All of a sudden, he stopped breathing as I was still holding his hand.
He had been a devotee of BABA since long and had visited Shirdi in 1962 for the first time. He would say about several things on BABA’s Shirdi as it was then. He met Laxmi Mai thrice and had held in his hands the nine coins of BABA many times. He said to me that Laxmi Mai said many things about BABA to him but he hardly could understand all as she used to speak in typical Marathi dialect.
Let’s all pray to BABA for this pious soul.
Shri. Gupta ji got chance to meet so many saints and highly spiritual souls in his lifetime which made him a saintly person. Straight forwardness was his best virtue because it ensured that whatever was in his mind and heart, was on his lips. Many of us are not that fortunate to see or meet him, but everybody can know him through his books. Whatever he bore as devotion, love, affection to Lord Sai Baba was scribbled on paper in large numbers, some of which are published and many more are still waiting to see light of the day. Thus to know him there was no need to meet him personally, one only needs to concentrate on the books which were outcome of his thoughts only.
Around last week, there were complains of irregular postings on our experiences blog. Let me now share with you the reason of my absence. I had been to New Delhi for two three days in first week of October just to meet Gupta uncle. Due to my other work commitments i could not plan and work on blogs this time. On October 2, 2011, i met him first time after two years of long chats over phone. When i reached, he was resting in his room which was full of books. I had glance of diaries too, i guess he used to imprint his thoughts in them. He was very happy to see me, took his attendent’s help to sit erect on chair and put his glasses to see me clearly. He started the conversation which did not end for next few hours. He was shedding tears while remembering blessings and grace of Lord Baba on him. I was speechless before this highly spiritual soul. Really he gave so nice discourses (yes i would call this conversation a sort of discourse only, as it purified me from within and changed my thinking and attitude to large extent). We three, me, my husband and my Sai brother had good food which was served very lovingly by his daughter.
The next day while we were enjoying our Delhi trip, i received a call from him and he said that he wanted to meet me again. Though we were going hectic on our schedule we decided to meet him before leaving Delhi. On October 4, 2011 we again went to see him. He was getting emotional and was again shedding tears. He served us with a sweet called “Ras-Malai” (sort of Bengali sweet) because he liked it very much. The thought that he was to leave this world soon was constantly on his mind but was still very active. He was presuming our meeting to be the last one but i was confident that Lord Baba will be kind to keep this soul with us for some more time. I was proved wrong. Lord Baba has His own plans for us but we never know unless we face them. When we were leaving, he told me to maintain standard of my blogs and never let it down due to any reason. Secondly he advised me to take care of my health. Though my mother is of his daughter’s age, he called her “Mataji” and send pranams for her. I was moved seeing this, not able to decide whether it was humility of this noble soul or an affection towards me and my family.
I was in utter shock state to hear news of his sudden demise. It is literally hard to believe that he is not among us. I feel that i have lost a real guiding hand from my head. He is at peace with Lord Baba but his physical absence will always pierce my heart. I take him to be alive still in his books which are source of light for us who are lost in darkness of ignorance even though we are said to be very learned and intellectual. Fragrance of Sai Bhakti is his last book which is real gold in my opinion and advice every devotee of Lord Baba to read.
Lastly i pray for departed soul to rest in peace (indeed i know it is in peace) and want you also to pray with me. Readers are free to comment back their condolences below in comment form.
Books by Shri. Suresh Chandra Gupta:
- Fragrance of Sai Bhakti (In English – Available on this blog for reading)
- Scribblings of a Shirdi Sai Devotee (In English – Available on this blog for reading)
- साईं कृपा की पावन स्मृतियाँ (Sai Kripa Ki Paawan Smritiyan) (In Hindi – Available on this blog for reading)
- साईं भक्ति के पथ पर (Sai Bhakti Ke Path Par) (In Hindi – Available on this blog for reading)
- साईं आत्मचिंतन (Sai Aatm-chintan) (In Hindi)
The above mentioned books can be obtained from Shri Sai Samiti Noida (Regd.), Noida (Sector – 40 Sai Temple) address given here under:
Shri Sai Samiti Noida (Regd.)
64 – D/2, F – Block, Sector – 40,
Noida (Uttar Pradesh) – 201 303
Phone: (0120) 4238672-76, 2575672, 2572810
Tele Fax: (0120) 4331915
E-mail: [email protected]