Sri Sai Guru Charitra is a biography on the life of Sai Baba of Shirdi, written by Sant Kavi Das Ganu Maharaj. Sant Kavi Das Ganu wrote three books on different saints, in which he devoted four chapters to Sai Baba. These books are called 'Bhakta Leelamrita', 'Bhakti Saramrita' and 'Sant Kathamrita'. The four chapters have been combined into one book, under the title of "Shri Sai Gurucharitra", and were translated into English in 1949.
Stories About Dasganu Maharaj Translated from the book Sai Sarovar
In our last post, we had seen how Dasganu landed in Loni village where he was disguised and served as a saint in Shri Ram Temple. Now we shall see what happened next.
Gradually word spread in and around Loni village that a saintly man has appeared in the temple of Ram on the bank of the river and now Ram has awakened in once a dilapidated temple. Morning and evening Artis are done there regularly. At night the sounds of Bhajan Kirtan are heard from a distance. Along with people, money has also started pouring into the temple. It seems as if the exile of Ram was coming to an end. A Brahmin from the village started coming to the temple. His name was Balabhatt. He and Dasganu, both got gelled together well. So Dasgunu got the task of worshiping the temple entrusted to him, whatever grain, money came in the temple, he will pass on to Balabhatt. While Dasganu will be immersed in singing bhajans for God, at the same time he was taking care of his duty, keeping a watchful eye. Also, he had developed good relations with the kids of the village by giving them fruits and dry fruits that were received as prasad and in return, he will get to know the inner secrets of the village from them.
Because of his actions, the people of the village carried mixed opinions about Dasganu. Some thought he was a spy of the British government while some took him to be a criminal who had wrong intentions, while the wise of the village thought him as a saintly person saying. They debated as, “This is the true saint, otherwise how can he take up chanting of Vishnu Sahastra Naam and carry on daily duties to God. He challenges the melody with beautiful bhajans sitting in the temple and here the strings of our heart jingle. Such a quality can only be of a saint and no one else”.
The village had a Talati. All called him Antaji Kulkarni. He was a very handsome man but his heart was full of sin. He was closely observing Dasganu. Not being able to come to any conclusion about him, he decided to test Dasgunu. One afternoon when Dasganu was sitting in the temple, Antaji came there singing “Jai Jai Sitaram” and went near him. He said, “A government letter has come in my name stating the person in the guise of a saint present in the temple is a government employee and I have been entrusted to take care of your needs. Do not hesitate to ask if you need anything. I will try my best to fulfill it”.
Dasganu had a sharp mind. He smelt something fishy and gave him a point-blank answer, “What do the government have to do with a saint person like me. I am a sincere saint, why will it send some letter about me to you? It cannot be about me, someone else, go and check again”. Receiving such a strong answer from Dasganu the Talati was spellbound and kept quiet but he still doubted Dasganu.
One day Gangaram Patel’s boy Sadashiv came to the temple with the other children of the village. Dasganu took his hand and turned it like he was looking at his palm. He gave him some apparent details about him and the boy went home and told his parents. Gangaram Patel also had a curiosity to know his future and so too went to Dasganu. Seeing his palm Dasganu brought out the consequences of his actions and concluded by saying that the money that he earned is not with good deeds and so it will put him into difficulties. He also added that whatever he spoke was seen by him as it is as written in his destiny and as the planetary positions convey. Rest he himself knows the best and his Ram. Hearing these words Gangaram Patel’s blood seemed to freeze. He bowed down in Dasganu’s feet. From that day onwards Gangaram Patel started sending pure cow’s milk, curd, tea, etc every day as if he was trying to cleanse his deeds. Rajbhog (sorts of dishes) was sent for God. The priest Balbhatt was also treated with all the comforts. After this incident, Dasganu’s fame increased many folds. Whether going to bathe in the river or returning from the bathe, people started bowing to him even on the way. Thus Antaji Kulkarni’s (Talati) doubt was cleared about Dasganu.
Dasganu apologized to God in his heart saying, “Lord! Forgive me for this deception, I am deceiving these poor and innocent people in the name of sadhu, those poor people consider me a saint and worship me, I am going to suffer for the action of theirs, Lord!” In this way, in repentance, the devotion towards God became more and more firm in Dasganu, and more and more joy he began to get out of his worship. His heart began to swell with the remembrance of Rama. An immense peace began to spread in him. Dasganu sometimes had the thought that only by pretending to take the name of the Lord can gain such respect, then what will be the consequence when the name is taken with a true heart and right intentions.
While the worship to God was going on, at the same time, Dasganu was aware that Yamraj is standing outside the door at the time. If Kaana Bhil comes to know about his whereabouts he will at once separate his head from the body. Before he came there, two officers from Madras named Manappa and Nagappa were trying to pull out details about the dacoit and the result was they were cut into pieces by the dacoit. Whenever this thought hit Dasganu his limbs froze and his heart started beating more.
An interesting turn in the story will be shared in the coming post. Hope you are finding these posts interesting. Please let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.
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