We will be posting series of posts about the life and services of Abdul Baba, a great devotee of Sai Baba, but less known and written about.
With Blessings and inspiration of Baba, dedicating this post (and upcoming series of posts) about Haji Abdul Baba who was one of the great Devotees (Maha-Bhakta) of Sai Baba. Haji Abdul Baba took samadhi in April 1954, so this is a form of our gratitude and salutations to such a great devotee for dedicated service to Lord during the month of samadhi.
Early Life of Haji Abdul Baba & How He Came To Shirdi
Haji Abdul Baba (born in 1871) was living in Nanded town and serving Sufi Saint Fakir Amiruddin. Once Lord Sai Baba appeared in the dream of Fakir and gave him two mangoes and told to give it to Haji Abdul Baba and send him to Shirdi immediately. When Fakir woke up, found two mangoes near him which he gave to Haji Abdul Baba and acted per Baba’s command. Haji Abdul Baba came to Shirdi in 1889-1890 at a young age when he was less than 20 years old. Lord Sai Baba welcomed him with words “Mera Kabla Ala” (My Crow has Come).
Following Baba’s command Haji Abdul Baba dedicated himself entirely to the tough service (scavenging, cleaning, washing clothes) with minimal sleep and minimal food. He strictly followed Baba’s instructions of “Eat very little and sleep very little”. His family (mother, wife and son) stayed in Nanded but Haji Abdul Baba made Shirdi his permanent home sacrificing everything for the service of the Lord.
The life of Haji Abdul Baba, reflects highest perfection in Dasyam Bhakti (Serving the Lord as His servant) and Aatma Nivedanam (Total surrender of oneself to the Lord) forms of Nav-vidha-Bhakti
Rinanubandha of Sai Baba With Haji Abdul Baba
The greatness of the Haji Abdul Baba and grace of Sai Baba on him can be easily visible from the fact that Haji Abdul Baba is one of rare devotees who got an opportunity to serve Baba for almost thirty years during Baba’s life in the human form and for thirty six years after Mahasamadhi. Just imagine, how much shubh karmas of past births must have bore fruits to make such a long association possible with Baba. Without Baba’s will, no one can enter into Shirdi, many get only limited opportunity to stay in Shirdi only for a few days. But Haji Abdul Baba’s devotion was at a very high spiritual plane and the rinanubandha of Shri Sai Baba with Haji Abdul Baba was of many centuries/generation old which along with the grace of Sadguru Sai Baba, only then this association was possible.
Sai Baba is an incarnation of Lord Dattatreya. In the 13th century when Lord Dattatreya incarnated as Lord Sri Sripada Srivallabha, Haji Abdul Baba visited Lord along with Bade Baba. Lord Sri Sripada Srivallabha told them that in the future avatar of the complete sadguru incarnation as Shri Sai Natha, both will get an opportunity to serve the Lord and will be uplifted with His grace. So this shows that without Guru’s grace no one can come closer or serve. More information about this can be found in chapter 18 (Divine Auspicious Darshan of Lord Srīpāda) the Holy book of Sri Sripada Srivallabha Charithamrutham.
Haji Abdul Baba’s Mention in Sai Satcharita
In the Holy book Shri Sai Satcharita, there are brief mentions of Haji Abdul Baba.
In Chapter 22 (Rescues from Serpent Bites – Leela of Baba, saving devotee Amir Shakkar). In this Leela, Baba ordered Haji Abdul Baba to bring a lantern in Chavadi to search for serpent.
In Chapter 34 (Greatness of Udi – Leela of Baba’s curing Dr. Pillay), Baba told Dr. Pillay – “Take off that bandage or else you will die. Now a crow will come and peck you, and then you will recover.” Soon Haji Abdul Baba came to perform service in Dwarakamai. During the service, his foot fell upon the stretched leg of Dr. Pillay and this incident led to removal of guinea-worms from the swollen foot and with taking Udi daily, the leg was cured.
In Chapter 35 (Udi’s Mahima – Story of Mahabhakta Balaji Patil Newaskar) – Every day Balaji Patil Newaskar swept and kept clean all the passages and streets in Shirdi through which Baba passed in His daily routine. This work was, after him, equally well-done by Param Siddha Yogini Maa RadhaKrishna Mai, and after her by Haji Abdul Baba.
Haji Abdul Baba’s Samadhi and Cottage in Shirdi
Baba’s devotees who have got golden opportunity to visit Holy Shirdi, may have visited Haji Abdul Baba’s cottage which is in front of Chavadi. In Haji Abdul Baba’s cottage one can find rare photographs and also Chimta (fire tongs) which was given by Lord Sai Baba to Haji Abdul Baba. This is the cottage where Haji Abdul Baba spent most of his last years of his life.
Haji Abdul Baba’s samadhi is located inside Samadhi Mandir complex. Just outside the southern fence of Shri Lendi, across the square from Dixit Wada, is a row of five samadhis (samadhis of Shri Tatya Kote Patil, Shri Nanavali, Haji Abdul Baba, Shri V.P. Iyer, Shri Bhau Maharaj Kumbhar). Haji Abdul Baba’s samadhi is located there. During my last visit to Shirdi, I also got the blessing to visit the samadhi and got a coin as a prasad from the ancestor of Haji Abdul Baba ji.
In the next post, we will be discussing “Sai Baba’s utterances” which Haji Abdul Baba maintained as a notebook and later transliterated into a book and more details on the significance of it along with other experiences of Haji Abdul Baba with Lord Sai Nath.
We pay our humble gratitude and obeisance to Baba and such a great devotee.
The information presented in this post is based on Shri Sai Satcharita, Shri Sripada Srivallabha Charitamartum and also based on learnings from Dr. Vinny’s research, books, videos, other author’s books and also from other websites dedicated to Sai Baba.
Request Devotees to watch this video from Dr. Vinny
Other online resources: