Shirdi, hometown and resting place of Shri Sai Baba,
who many believe is an incarnation of Lord Shiva. Shirdi is
visited by millions of devotees every year. As his teaching
cuts across all religions and beliefs, pilgrims from all faiths
throng to get a sight of the Samadhi Idol.
Sai Baba Sansthan, Shirdi was established in 1922 to carry
out the noble service of Sai Baba. At the age of 16, Sai Baba
first appeared here under a tree. For the next 60 years, he
devoted his life towards helping the poor and alleviate their
suffering. The villagers of Shirdi each claimed him as a member
of their own religion, but he always encouraged each to stick
to his own religious path. Some even believed he was an incarnation
of Lord Shiva. He effected cures, conferred
health, happiness and prosperity and made childless couples
conceive but Sai Baba's real purpose was to awaken in them
a longing for the spiritual life.
Samadhi Mandir (temple) of Sai Baba was owned by a millionaire
and a famous Sai devotee from Nagpur, Shreemant Gopalrao.
He wanted to keep an idol of Murlidhar here. According to
legend, Sai Baba himself became Murlidhar and the temple became
the Samadhi Mandir of Baba. The Mandir houses a statue of
Sai Baba made of Italian marble and surrounded by ornamental
decorations. There is also an assembly hall for devotees with
a showcase of objects used by Sai Baba.
Dwarkamai is a mosque where Sai Baba inhabited till his death.
The main attraction here are the paintings of him. A shrine
has been constructed at the place where Sai Baba cam to as
a child and is called Gurusthan. The dhuni
(sacred fire) still burns here and its ash is smeared on devotees
Air : The nearest
airports are Mumbai (260 kms), Pune (185 kms) and Aurangabad
Train: The nearest
railway station is Manmad (60 kms) on the Central Railway,
which is connected to many parts of the country with Express
is very well connected by a network of roads and road transport
to all major towns of Maharashtra and surrounding areas.