About the Author:
Born in Baroda (Gujarat) on 29 October 1918, Lt Col. Mukundrao Balvantrao Nimbalkar (Retd.) graduated with English and Marathi literature in 1939 and joined Baroda State Army as cadet officer. In 1949, he was enlisted in the Indian Army and served first in the Maratha Regiment and then in the Fourth Gorkha Rifles. He retired in 1968 as Lieutenant Colonel after 29 years of service.
A year before retirement, while recouping at the Naval Hospital at Bombay from a heart ailment, he chanced to read the Life of Sai Baba by N.V. Gunaji. On discharge from the hospital, he read the book once again, and on 3 August 1967, had a miraculous chance to touch and pay respects to the silver sandals of Sai Baba being taken from Shirdi to London, since then his lifestyle underwent a total transformation.
Being well versed in Sanskrit, he studied the Ramayana, the Mahabharata, the Gita, the Upanishad and the Vedas. He also studied the Marathi Jnaneshvari, Eknath Bhagavan, Tukaram Gatha and Das Bodh, all considered to be the four Vedas of Maharashtra. From 1980, he started contributing articles, in both Marathi and English, to Shri Sai Leela. In 1993, he published a profusely illustrated, voluminous book in Marathi Shri Sainche Satya Charitra, in prose from with detailed commentary and notes from the original Shri Satcharita.
"Like the holy waters of the Ganges, this Shri Sai Satcharita purifies others through moral excellence. Blessed are the ears of the listeners (or the eyes of the readers) of this Sai Satcharita which is the means of success in this life as well as the life after death." (21).
"If this Sai Satcharita is compared to nectar (drink of the Gods), is the nectar sweeter than Sai Satcharita? Nectar will only protect one from death, but Sai Satcharita will save one from taking births again and again." (22).
From the above stanzas, it will be realized how invaluable is Shri Sai Satcharita written by the late Shri Govind Raghunath Dabholkar alias Hemadpant. In it, the teachings of Shri Sai Baba, in his own words and in the worlds of Hemadpant, are spread over at various places. Some Sai devotees have collected and published them in Shri Sai Leela and other books. But unless they are sorted out subjectwise, it is difficult for anybody to properly understand them and bring them into practice. I firmly believe that any teachings contained in a book are fruitful only if they are properly understood and brought in action.
"Reading only is not sufficient. It must be brought into action, otherwise it will be wasted like water poured on an inverted pot." (72).
I, therefore, thought that if Sai Baba's teachings were selected and collated subjectwise, they would be very useful. Fortunately, at the very time, I came across a series of booklets, viz, Money, Food, Sleep, etc, containing teachings of Shri Aurobindo and the Mother of Pondicherry, and I thought of writing, if not a booklet, at least an article on each subject of Sai Baba's teachings and philosophy.
Accordingly, I started writing such articles, and with Sai Baba's grace published 21 such articles in Shri Sai Leela (English) the official periodical of Shri Sai Baba Sansthan, Shirdi from July-August 1993 to November-December 1995.
Now they are being published as a book by my younger brother, Jaisinh, as a humble service to the Sai devotees. I am, indeed, very grateful to him.
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