I have heard of this confusion: “Who is Baba? Who is Sai Baba? Is he a God? Is he a Guru? Is he an Avadhoota? Is he a Master of a certain path or segment like the Nath Tradition or the Avadhoota Tradition?” Various questions of this nature come up. It has come to me as well. I have heard that. I have read that.
I always think about one thing – Does it really matter? The lifespan of a human being in the Kali Yuga is about 100 years. Out of these 100 years, the effective years are the times when you are available to the world, when you are serving the world, when you are giving something to the world. That’s the only effective years. Out of 7.5 billion people on Earth, many people do not have any effective years. They live their whole life for themselves – eating, drinking, sleeping, entertaining themselves, some pleasures of the mind, and things like that. But if you look at the life of Baba, almost 100 percent of his existence, as we know – in Dwarkamai and beyond – has been for the world. So, his life has been totally effective, almost 99 percent, we say. We don’t know about the time when he was not in Dwarkamai, or before that. Who is Baba is what he has delivered.
We only know certain things from certain literature, but I am 100 percent sure, and we all know, that he has done much more. As you know, he is doing a lot today for thousands of people across the world. You can see his presence in all the continents. A person who lived in a small dilapidated place in Shirdi has reached every corner of the Earth, many years after his physical existence. Isn’t that a miracle? It’s a huge miracle! So who has the power to create that miracle? That is him.
Whether he is an Avadhoota, whether he is a Siddha, whether he is a Guru, whether he is God, it does not matter. As far as his presence is concerned, he is pure Consciousness. If there are boundaries, like we have boundaries – physical boundary, emotional boundary, and intellectual boundary – we have all these boundaries, various boundaries, various frames, and we are those frames and we can’t go beyond those frames, because we do not allow ourselves to cross those frames and boundaries. This is our usual life.
But Baba never had a boundary. What does that mean? He is pure Consciousness. Then what is his body? Just a representation. Without that representation, you can’t connect to the pure Consciousness. He brought himself as a representation for the sake of humanity, and he took a suitable form. He is neither a Hindu, nor a Muslim, nor a Christian, nor a Buddhist… He is everything – as a form which is suitable for everybody to connect to the pure Consciousness.
So whether he is a Guru… If somebody looks at him as a Guru, he is a Guru. If somebody looks at him as God, he is God. If somebody looks at him as an Avadhoota, he is an Avadhoota. If somebody looks at him as a Nath, he is a Nath. This is a round object. He is everything. Pure Consciousness is everything. Pure Consciousness is you and I. Pure Consciousness pervades the whole Universe – not only the Earth, but well beyond. Representation of that pure Consciousness in a body which can be related to, conceived a body which can be connected to, and that is what he is. We define him as per our capacity, as per our boundaries, that’s all we do. But is Baba that? For you, yes! As per your boundary, you have understood him as per whatever you think he is. That’s about it. So we must understand that great, great Masters are never born, they will never die, as Baba is proving every moment. They are all-pervading, and through every idol of his, he talks, he communicates, he gets people to connect to him.
So pure Consciousness without boundaries – that’s him. And whichever form that goes in, that form is the pure Consciousness. That does not limit the pure Consciousness, that’s what we should understand. No limitation. We have a limitation, we discriminate people, we look at people – “Oh, he is this form.” We only understand based on forms. That is why we have confusion between Gurus. What is the role of a real Guru? To connect you to the Supreme Consciousness, or to remind you that you are the Supreme Consciousness, which you are searching for. This is the role of every Guru. But we look at a Guru as a problem-solver, or somebody who will tell you your future. If you want to know your future, you are a bundle of insecurities. Only when we have lots of insecurities, we will want to know what will happen tomorrow. If we are completely surrendered, and if we are fully merged with the Supreme Consciousness, we wouldn’t want to know what will happen tomorrow, it doesn’t matter. Or something like, “Okay, if I am born, I will die.” That’s about it, in between what happens doesn’t matter.
So like that, when you are deeply connected to a Master as powerful and as glorious as Baba, we will only feel ourselves in him, what we are in him. That’s exactly why thousands of people are coming to Shirdi today. They all see themselves in Baba. They get their problem mirrored or reciprocated from Baba and that gets solved, most of them get solved. How does it get solved? It is as good as how much you surrender. Say, “It doesn’t belong to me, I leave it to you. My life is not mine; this physical form has no value, I leave it to you.” That brings you more and more peace, more and more stability. So, who is Baba? The fundamental question. Baba is YOU. How you are, that’s how you see Baba.
But is Baba one thing? He cannot be. If he is one thing, all these people in the world cannot connect to that. A flat object – only a few people will connect. Not everybody can connect. For everybody to connect, that object or that person should have a round character. He’s not bound. Whatever is bound needs liberation. Whatever is unbound needs no liberation, because they are liberation already. This is Baba. So if ever you have that question as to, “Who is Baba?” ask yourself, “Who am I?” And then you will find the answer.
Transcribed by Nada Rakovic
Proofread by Shyama Jeyaseelan