Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Book Review: Sai Baba is Still Alive by Jaya Wahi

Book Review: Sai Baba is Still Alive

Book Details. . .

·         Title: Sai Baba is Still Alive
·         Author: Jaya Wahi
·         Genre: Devotional
·         Publisher: Times Group Books (2013)
·         ISBN: 9382299483 (ISBN-13: 978-9382299486)
·         Pages: 232 Pages
·         Rating: 3.75/5

Behind The Book. . .

“… when I read about Sai Baba and all that He professed, the one thing that comes to my mind is this: Be a fakir and live in bliss.”
– Jackie Shroff

Sai Baba Is Still Alive is a book of miracles that devotees of Sai Baba have experienced in recent times. Ranging from simple yet heart-rending experiences to astounding life-saving ones, this book affirms the victory of faith over suffering, sorrow and even death, and at the same time reinforces the faith of Baba's devotees in His Eternal Soulful Presence. Interspersed with nuggets of Baba's teachings, excerpts from His life and replete with His quotes, this book is a handbook to everyday living as well as a guide to good karma and a meaningful life.

Whether you are a confirmed devotee of Baba Sai or on the path to discovering Him or simply curious, this book will delight and soothe you that in these testing times of uncertainty and stress, Sai Baba is still alive.
Book Synopsis. . .

In Sri Sai Satcharitra, Baba says, "Believe Me, though I pass away, My bones in My tomb will give you hope and confidence. Not only Myself but My tomb would be speaking, moving and communicating with those who would surrender themselves whole-heartedly to Me. Do not be anxious that I would be absent from you. You will hear My bones speaking and discussing your welfare. But remember Me always, believe in Me heart and soul and then you will be most benefited.” The book ‘Sai Baba is Still Alive’ by Jaya Wahi is a constructive testimonial to the aforesaid assurance of Baba – HE still communicates with HIS children absolving their worries and pains, the only pre-requisite is to stay patient and have faith.

The authoress starts the book by sharing her inspiration to pen down Baba’s leelas and the experience of the devotees so that people at large can be benefitted by the nectar of HIS blessings. Despite having acute inspiration and staunch will, she lacked the courage to go ahead with the venture and then Baba Himself gave her an indication and that final nudge to pursue it further through series of omen and vision in Samadhi Mandir. She also shares her first tryst with Baba and HIS dhaam Shirdi when despite of any plans and intentions she received the call of Baba to come to Shirdi - truly Baba’s calling as HE says, “…not even the leaf of a tree cannot move without my bidding.”

Apart of enumerating the personal experiences of the authoress of Baba and HIS grace (which she experienced at various junctures of life), the book also dwells upon the experiences of other devotees which embodies and thrusts upon Baba’s twin principles of Shradha (Faith) and Saburi (Patience). There is an anecdote of one devotee whose sole child comes back from the jaws of death, thanks to their utmost faith on Baba and HIS words. Then there is one lady in Shirdi going through the most depressing phase of life which refused to go away and even in the hardest of the times her faith remained steadfast; and how Baba moulds her sufferings to blessings with HIS divine ways. Another one relates to a child (and this happens to be one of my favorite) whose sheer innocence and tenderness compelled HIM to come down to earth. And there are innumerable incidents like these in the book which not only bring solace to the reading soul but also affirm HIS teachings and HIS commitment towards HIS children and their well-being.

How does Baba still continues to cherish and benefit the lives of HIS children? How reading Baba’s stories and having faith and devotion in HIM resolves even the toughest of the worries? How does Baba’s Udi prove magical in curing even the incurable of the disease?

Grab a copy of the book to unearth the answers to above and experience HIS stories like never before.

My Thoughts. . .

“Sai Baba is Still Alive” has been on my reading list since long and for some strange reason, it took a bit long for me to catch hold of this gem. Guess, it was all HIS leela as perhaps HE wanted me to read this on some designated time and phase of my life. HIS ways are truly inscrutable and so are HIS deeds!!!

I have been reading ‘Sri Sai Satcharitra’ since many years which incorporates Baba’s stories, teachings and anecdotes to enlighten HIS children even after so many years of HIS being. The book (Sri Sai Satcharitra) assumes greater significance as it was written during Baba’s time by Baba’s consent and infact, Baba himself wrote it through Govindrao Dabholkar (whom Baba used to affectionately call ‘Hemadpant’). In this book, Baba says, “Anyone who reads My stories shall be on the road to happiness and eternal contentment.” And whosoever reads HIS stores can vouch the truthfulness of the above statement. “Sai Baba is Still Alive” by Jaya Wahi most aptly falls in the aforesaid category, truly leading the reader on the path of happiness and eternal contentment.

The beauty of the book lies in the fact that it beautifully chronicles the gems of Sri Sai Satcharitra and weaves around them the miraculous experiences of HIS devotees, the underlying teachings and categorical interpretation of Baba’s words. The authoress has penned the whole piece from her heart and the various facets of human emotions are clearly visible in her writing. One does feel anguished and despaired while reading about the problems and worries of the fellow devotees. The feeling of anguish soon transforms into jubilance and exultancy when Baba’s divine interference absolves all worries waving away all the clouds of despair through the radiant rays of HIS divinity and grace. There are enough poignant moments in the book to give goosebumps to the reader. The immaculate writing can be adjudged from the fact that you smile, cry and long along-with while reading the book. For instance, she has beautifully crafted the experience and magic of Shirdi…each devotee will affirm and relate to the feeling of exuberance in arrival to Shirdi & the despondency and melancholy one feels when one is about to leave the place.

The best outcome of reading this book is that it further strengthens and bolsters our faith lending a silent re-assurance in the heart that “Don’t worry, Baba is here.” I strongly believe that devotion in any form is incomplete until it is substantiated by strong faith and undying perseverance. Faith is a magical potion flowing from the heart emitting an expression of hope and positivity which goes beyond the logical and conscious mind. This book further cements devotee’s faith on Baba and sprinkles the nectar of his divine fragrance negating doubts and conflicts of the conscious mind and the sub-conscious soul. Reading HIS divine leela’s provides assurance to the yearning soul that HIS helping hand is always there over your head, just keep the flames of faith burning.

To be candid, would like to conclude my thoughts with a small confession here . . . at some junctures of the book reading at various anecdotes, I felt a deep sense of longing and yearning of having similar experiences and visions. It did made me ponder as to how blessed are those fortunate children of Baba to have experienced HIS grace and divinity in such a fashion & (more than that) how unfortunate some of the wandering souls remain to wait unceasingly for that moment of absolution!!!

The cover page of the book shows Baba’s kind face smiling silently to the devotees with unbound grace flowing from HIS divine vision. The title of the book ‘Sai Baba is Still Alive’ perfectly gels with the overall setting of the book which encapsulates Baba’s leelas and experiences, re-confirming HIS assurance to the children, “Though I be no more in flesh and blood, I shall ever protect my devotees”. The printing, font and word spacing are decent enough to grant reader a comfortable read.

The Final Word. . .

‘Sai Baba is Still Alive’ is a must read for all the devotees of Baba for the book (truly) is Baba’s grace personified. Even for those who are not HIS devotees, the book commands a read for the sheer pearls of wisdom it embodies in its crust. It provides a soulful experience which is soothing to the soul and relaxing to the mind and (more importantly) strengthens the inherent faith within. HIS leelas are akin to the perennial flowing stream, it is only up to us as to how deep we can dive to extract the pearls out of it – the deeper the dive, the precious the pearl.

Grab your copy, take a dive and unearth the zillion of pearls that lies within!!!

Rating: 3.75/5

Five Favorite Quotes. . .

1.    Just seeing Baba’s effulgent form in the Samadhi Mandir destroys all our sins. Shedding tears of love cleanses the impact of all negative samskaras and karmas. Merely being in His presence imparts the wisdom drawn from all the scriptures of the world. And then when the eyes meet and the soul connects, there is love, there is joy and there are divine miraculous experiences of Oneness. So, cherish and live to the fullest, every moment of joy spent in the Samadhi Mandir. See Him, feel Him, breathe Him and love Him, for there is no feeling more blissful, no place more sacrosanct than Baba’s Samadhi Mandir.

2.    So love Him, trust Him and stay prepared at every moment, for you never know when He may walk up to you and say, “Oh Maa, Oh Bapu, may I sit with you and chit-chat for some time?”

3.   One huge unbearable problem in your life could be a small test that Baba is putting you through. And this small test could translate into your big opportunity of proving your unwavering faith in your Sai.

4.     Have you ever thought why is it that when we are happy, nature seems happy too and when we are sad, it feels as though gloom is cast over our entire world? This happens because the Universal Soul rests in all of nature and in each one of us too. Nature feels what we feel and vice versa.

5.   Problems are opportunities to look within and evolve. Each fall should become a reason to rise, and each hurdle a reason to move on.

About the Author. . .

Jaya Wahi is an Indian writer. She is an honours graduate from Lady Shri Ram College, Delhi University. A Reiki master, she heals people around the world and initiates them into the science of healing. She is a devoted follower of Sai Baba and is well-read in the Vedanta. She is also the founder-director of Divatyas, where she combines ancient Indian teachings with Western thought. Visit her website to know more about her.

Where to grab a copy. . .

Please click here to buy the book from Amazon

Please click here to buy the book from Flipkart

~ Shubh Life . . . OM Sai Ram 

© 2016 Manish Purohit (Reserved)

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