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iXiGOers Dec 09 2012

What all should I know about the Shri Saibaba Sansthan Temple Complex?

Kapil Gumasta DEC 10 2012
0 people found this answer useful Useful ?Yes

One of the greatest saints of all time, Sai Baba of Shirdi has changed the lives of one and many. Paying homage to this great saint, a temple complex is built in the village that is visited today by a multitude of pilgrims from all across India and outside. Spread across 200 sq km, the temple complex is situated in the center of the Shirdi village. Housing the samadhi of Sai Baba, and many other temples in the premises, the place is a greatly revered place by the pilgrims.

Annually the temple complex is visited by more than 25,000 devotees per day and during festival season this number might increase up to 1,00,000. The three main festivals that are celebrated in Shirdi are Ramnavami in the month of March or April, Guru Purnima in the month of July and Vijayadashami, popularly known as Dussehrain the month of September. Many programmes like Bhajan, Parayana and procession with palanquin and Rath take place during these festivals.

The important temples inside the temple complex are mentioned below:

  • Khandoba Temple

    This temple is of great significance that trails back to the life of Sai Baba. This temple was the first place where Baba halted on his visit to Shirdi along with the wedding party of Chand Bhai Patil and in this very place Baba got his name.

    On seeing Baba dressed as a
    fakir a temple priest, named Mhalsapaticalled Him out as ‘Ya Sai' meaning ‘Come Sai'. Then onwards the name Sai Baba continues to reverberate in the land till today. Baba chose to stay in this little temple that was located on the periphery of the village in those days.
    Khandoba is a
    pastoral deity and is considered as a form of Lord Shiva. Khandoba is worshipped all over Maharashtra. The idol of Khandoba is placed inside the temple.
    A huge Banyan tree is seen on the entrance of the temple. It is the same tree where the bullock cart of
    Sai Baba halted. There is a small shrine with the padukas underneath the tree.
    The temple was renovated in the late 1920's by a devotee of
    Sai Baba, Upasani Maharaj.

  • Gurusthan

    Gurusthan is the place of guru. It was the place where Baba spent most of his time and the tomb of his own guru was placed underneath a neem tree in the place. The tree can be still found at the same place. Baba used to live under this tree for few years. The neem tree in the gurusthan is considered to be a symbol of sanctity and devotees are seen doing pradakshina around the tree.

  • Samadhi Mandir

    The Samadhi mandir is the holy shrine that houses the tomb of Baba. Baba had said that He shall always stay active and vigorous even from his tomb. You can actually feel the omniscient being of Baba inside the temple. It is the most important temple in the entire temple complex. The pilgrims visiting the temple complex consider the visit to the Samadhi Mandir as the ultimatum. There is also a museum that displays the belongings of Baba and things associated with him.

    Aarti is held four times a day in the Samadhi Mandir. The first one is held early in the early morning at 4.30am, then at noon, next is held at around 6.30 during sunset and the last one is at 10.30pm. It is considered as the highlight of the spiritual tour in Shirdi. So, to attend the aarti, it is better to reach the Samadhi mandir as early as possible and wait in the queue at the complex.

  • Dwarkamai

    Dwarkamai is a mosque that was once the home of Baba. Baba considered this place as his mother. The place houses the Yadnya or the dhundi
    which is a sacrificial rite on a pyre. It is the most significant part of Dwarkamai. The dhundi is a perpetually burning fire that Baba built and has been maintained ever since. Today the fire is much bigger and is enclosed inside a wired cage. The ash that is produced from this everlasting fire is considered to be immensely holy and people believes that it has the power to shun all evil. This ash from the Dhundi is known as Udi, Baba used to distribute udi among his devotees in earlier days. Today, you can get the udi from the Sansthan office's counter. Other important things in Dwarkamai are the nimber, the grinding stone and the bag of wheat, the chillums, Baba's portrait, hundi, cooking hearth and the wooden post.

  • Chavadi

    Chavadi means village office. This was another place where Baba used to go. Apparently he used to spend his nights during his last decades at this very place. At the spot today, people worship Baba and remember him. There is a large portrait of Baba inside the Chavadi.
    ChavadiProcession takes place in the temple complex, which is a traditional procession from Dwarkamai to Chavadi with Baba's Padukas and photograph. It starts from the Samadhi Mandir at 9.15 pm and ends at Chavadi

  • Lendi Gardens

    Lendi Gardens was Baba's place of penance and also his paradise. The garden holds immense significance for the devotees today. The Nanda Deep which is a perpetually burning lamp that was placed by Baba here. It is between two trees that he planted, one of them is a neem tree and the other is a Bodhitree. The Nanda Deep was originally lit by Baba himself.

There are also other significant temples in the complex like the Hanuman Mandir with an idol of Lord Hanuman made in black stone, Mahalaxmi Mandir, Narasimha temple etc.
So, what are you waiting for? Go, explore the life of the greatest saint on earth, Sai Baba...

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