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one wants, and Tasya Cha Aajna Yathaa Mamah' i.e. getting one's com­mand obeyed universally (vide Srimad Bhaaghavata) for the awakening (UDBODHAN) and upliftment of devotees by stages according to each one's capacity depending on 'rinanubandha' (residual after-effects of previous births) to rise through mate­rial advancement of directly on to Spiritual enlightenment.

People came to Him in small numbers at first from the neighbourhood and ere long in ever increasing numbers from far flung places. It might be as a result of a vision or a dream, initiation or prompting provided sub-consciously, or super-consciously, or a message conveyed through a friend or even an­other divinely at-ONE-ment Saint like the Akalkot Maharaj vi­brating in unison directing a person to go to Shirdi, or in rare and blessed instances, Baba Himself appearing as the incarna­tion at Shirdi or as some fakir or Sadhu to render timely help in ire need and disappear leaving it to the person concerned to realise post facto either when he beheld a photo of Baba or a lucky coincidental visit to Shirdi en route to some place, when to the consternation of the person himself and the assembled devotees, Baba referred to the occasion of His visit with exact details. Not unoften, His visits were simultaneous at widely sepa­rated places. At other times He appeared as a dog or cat and later gave proof by exhibiting on His body traces of the injury inflicted on the animals by them. He proved both from His knowledge of past births and objectively how the relationship between Him and some chosen devotees had continued through successive births in some of which the latter were born even as lower mammals, reptiles or amphibians. He modified or com­pletely obviated impending danger from various sources includ­ing the elements in respect of His devotees in answer to prayer or as a rule of His own volition as 'Bhaktha Paraadina'. The frantic gestures He used to make all of a sudden, waving His hands, hitting at imaginary Objects or shouting abuses, used to mystify those present at the

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