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Sai Temples Network helps devotees find information on Shirdi Sai Baba temples around the United States, including their location and services. If you are a Sai Baba follower or a new devotee looking for a community, look no further! Just browse the map above to search for Sai temples in any location, or search for a specific area by city and state, or ZIP code.
About Shirdi Sai Baba
Sai Baba of Shirdi, also known as Shirdi Sai Baba, is an Indian saint (or fakir, satguru) who is known to his followers as an incarnation of God. He has devotees of both Hindu and Muslim faiths. He was born around 1838, and not much else is known as to where he was born or his real name as he was known to intentionally give vague answers to questions about his origin, claiming that these facts were not important. In one instance, when asked about his origins, Sai Baba replied: "I am the Attributeless, Absolute, Nirguna. I have no name, no residence." Some researches claim that his real name may be Haribhau Bhusari, and that his parents were Brahmins from the village of Pathri. Others, however, claim that he was brought up by a Hindu guru named Venkusa of Selu.
He arrived at the village of Shirdi in Ahmednagar District at the age of 16 years old, and practiced meditation while staying very solitary. It was at this time that the villagers named him Sai Baba, where Sai means "God" and Baba means "father" or "sir." At first, Hindu villagers were wary of Sai Baba because he dressed like a Muslim.
Sai Baba took up residence in a monastery and was responsible for maintaining the sacred fire (dhuni) which was known to have special healing powers. Over time, Sai Baba became famous for many of the miracles that he was able to perform, such as being in two locations at the same time, levitating, reading people's minds, curing illnesses and manifesting objects out of thin air. Because of his miracle work, he was at first famous in Shirdi and surrounding areas, but by the early 1900s his teachings and fame had spread across India, including large cities such as Mumbai. His devotees have continued to strongly grow and the Shirdi Sai movement has spread to overseas locations as well. Much of his teachings focus on love, forgiveness, altruism, charity, contentment, inner peace and devotion to God.
Is Shirdi Sai Baba Muslim or Hindu?
There is no clear answer to this question as his teachings included elements of both Hinduism and Islam. In fact, Sai Baba's very own name has both Muslim and Hindu etymology. Sai is of Persion origin, meaning holy or saint in Muslim contexts. Baba, on the other hand, is a Hindi term that literally means father. Additionally, he is known to have participated in both Hindu and Muslim rituals and naming conventions, and was often described as having a Muslim appearance due to his Sufi clothing which included a Kafni robe and cloth cap. Additionally, for Hindus, he would urge them to study the Ramayan / Bhagavat Gita, while pushing the Qur'an for Muslims. In fact, he has directly preached the importance of devoting oneself to the true Satguru, where differentiation of religion and caste would not be considered necessary or relevant. Interestingly, at the same time, he did not accept atheism and encouraged all of his devotees to follow and have faith in a God.