Rao Bahadur S.B.Dhumal, B.A., LL.B,
Pleader, Brahmin, aged 63, Nasik

Nasik, 16th October, 1936 & Shirdi, 28th October, 1936

I have one great difficulty in answering the question "What are your experiences of Sai Baba?" All hours of day and night, I am having experiences of Baba. There is no incident or event in my life which I do not connect with him - however trivial it may appear to be. I firmly believe that everything in my life is swayed by Baba. What then is to be mentioned as my experience? Of course, the outside world will not be ready to accept my belief as correct or well-founded. But that matters nothing to me. In fact, that very disbelief of people seems to be a reason for refusing to disclose one's experience. Every devotee feels that his experiences are his own, and are given to him for his own spiritual and temporal benefit and not for ventilation or publication to the general public which, of course, includes masses of ignorant, irrelevant carping critics and scoffers. Yet ardent biographers are anxious to ferret out one's innermost secret and sacred experiences to embellish their work. But the devotee whom they delve into feels that in the very act of dragging the secret experience into light, its reality and life are destroyed. The anatomist anxious to examine the living organism inch by inch cuts out what he wants and places it under his microscope, but in that very act, life is destroyed and what he examines with his instrument is dead tissue and not the living organism. The best way of understanding Baba is to experience him oneself. Where is Baba gone? He is still alive and active - more active, if that were possible, than he was before his Mahasamadhi. Anyone in downright earnest can get into touch with him, to-day and at once. But if one will not do that, but wants experiences, secondhand, third-hand or even fifth-hand, he will get but poor stuff. I feel also very strongly the regrettable fact that experiences which get their significance and full force when expressed in our vernacular are to be now expressed to you and by you in English and that the loss in translation will be serious.

Anyhow as you want some facts about Baba I shall narrate some that I can personally vouch for i.e., about myself chiefly.

I was first (in 1903) devoted to Gajanan Maharaj whom I took to Srimant Gopal Rao Buti. About 1907 I went to Sai Baba. From my very first visit, I was greatly impressed with his extraordinary personality. At his unspoken command, I took Buti to him and at once Buti also became his devoted follower. Among the services of the latter to Baba, perhaps the most momentous and memorable is his allowing his huge stone-pile (Dagdiwada) to be used as the temple for the reception of the mortal remains and the worship of Baba. It is difficult to sort out my recollections of Baba, as I consider that every act of mine and every event in my life is moulded and directed by him. I may quote some sayings and acts of His which throw light on what Sai Baba is, has done, and is doing for devotees (like me).