Shri Sai Satcharitra – Reading Methodology
Now I shall mention the procedure of recitation (of the book), as well as the easy method of doing a reading within seven days, as laid down in the Gurucharitra or other such books. Listeners are requested to pay attention.
Do the recitation with a pure heart and devotion, completing it in one day or two days or three days. Sai Narayan will be gratified.
Otherwise, complete it easily in a week and you will have immense good fortune on a continuing basis. Sai will fulfill the heart’s desire and the fear of the worldly existence will be destroyed.
Begin the recitation on a Thursday, in the early morning after a bath. Sit on your ‘asan’ (seat for prayer), after quickly completing your usual routine.
Make a pleasing, large canopy with banana plants, ‘kardali’, and beautiful cloth covering over it and let it be welldecorated.
In it, let there be a raised platform (for the book) and decorate all the four sides of it with colourful ‘rangoli’, which are pleasing for the eyes.
Making an image of Sai Sadguru or taking a beautiful picture of him, place it carefully on the high platform. Make obeisance to him with love.
Tying the book in a silken cloth, place it near the Sadguru. After worshipping both with ‘panch upachar’, commence the reading.
Observe the holy vows for eight days, having only milk or fruits or roasted grain of any one kind, eating only once or having only one meal.
Facing the east and keeping the image of the Sadguru in the heart, do the recitation of the book with a calm mind and with joy.
During the seven days, read the first eight chapters on the first day, then the next eight on the second day, followed by next seven on the third day. Then eight, six, eight and seven chapters on the following four days, and only ‘Avataranika’ on the eighth day.
On the eighth day, at the end of the observance of vows and of the offering of ‘naivedya’ to Sai Narayana, feed friends, relatives and Brahmins with delicacies and give ‘dakshina’ to them to the best of one’s ability.
Inviting the Vedic Brahmins, have them chant the Vedas at night, offer them sugar flavoured milk and give them a respectful send-off, after they are well satisfied in body and mind.
Finally, after doing obeisance at the Sadguru’s Feet, offer him appropriate ‘dakshina’ and send that to the Treasury (of the Shirdi Sansthan) to augment the funds of the Sansthan.
Lord Sai will be gratified thereby, and he will bless the devotee. The snake in the form of the worldly existence will be destroyed and the treasure of liberation will be revealed to him.
Listeners, may you feel at home with the Saint. You may forget the ‘Avataranika’, but keep an eye on the meaning of the book. This is the earnest request of this humble one, at your feet.
Virtuous listeners, be very merciful to this humble one till the end of time. I place my head at your feet. Baba’s Bal prays thus to you.
Whatever is very deficient, attribute it to me. Take the essence, you listeners, and act in such a way that the mind is resplendent.
Obeisance to Sai, the son of Shiva (i.e. Ganesha); obeisance to Sai, seated on the Lotus (i.e. Brahmadev): obeisance to Sai, the killer of the demon Madhu (i.e. Vishnu). Obeisance to Sai, the five-faced Lord (i.e. Shiva).
Obeisance to Sai, the son of Atri (i.e. Datta); obeisance to Sai the killer of the demon Paka (i.e. Indra); obeisance to Sai, the lover of the night (i.e. the Moon); obeisance to Sai, the Lord of Fire.
Obeisance to Sai the Consort of Rukmani, Obeisance to Sai the Sun of the Mind; obeisance to Sai the Ocean of Knowledge; obeisance to Sree Sai, Dñyaneshwara.
The ‘Avataranika’ is the verbal ‘pushpanjali’ (offering of flowers). Similar is the obeisance of glorious names which I have prayed offering them at the feet of the Guru. Mother Sai be gratified.
This is the end of the fifty-third chapter of Sree Sai Samartha Satcharita, written by Baba’s slave, Bal, impelled by Saints and virtuous people, called “Avataranika ” (Epitome).
This is offered to Sree Sadguru Sainath.
May there be auspiciousness!
- Shri Sai Samartha Satcharitra – Ch 53 Ovi 181 – 202