Many of the Sai devotees term the present epoch as the period of “Sai Globalization” or as ‘The Age of Sai’. Of late, this concept and also the terminology has gained currency, because of the approaching Celebration of the Centenary Year of Shirdi SaiBaba’s Mahasamadhi falling in the month of Oct, 2018. Most of the organisations related with Shirdi Saibaba in India and abroad, are gearing up for the Celebration of the Centenary Year with much zeal and enthusiasm. Lots of news is afloat concerning the Global Sai Conferences, events and other related activities in the social network of the internet. Shirdi Sai Global Foundation (SSGF) is one such organisation which is fully dedicated to the globalization of the Sai Movement since long. It has already gone a long way in leading other organisations and individuals in this path and now, it is striving to intensify this globalization in different continents.
Given this backdrop, it would be pertinent to clearly understand the concept of globalization of the Sai Movement with its finer nuances or, simply speaking, to know what exactly it stands for. Clarity of concept would enable the various Sai- related organizations to program different events during the years 2017 – 2018 properly.
(I) Globalization, in the broadest sense of the term means the act of extending an idea or an organization to other or all parts of the world. It also means the world-wide integration of the Sai Movement in all its aspects. The different organisations that have been created in the name of Shri Shirdi Sai Baba all over the globe as also the integration of the vast social network propagating the noble deeds and philosophy of Baba, should come together with a common theme. The main theme can contain sub- themes as well. These are:
Shirdi Sai Baba was a saint par excellence, who served whoever came to Him with love and compassion. He was beyond racialism, casteism and any sort of man-made differences in society. Before leaving His mortal body, He promised to continue to help His devotees from His subtle existence. Most of the devotees have experienced His subtle existence, because they are helped by Him in times of distress. Hence, they repose faith in Him.
(III) Baba preached humanism, service to all, tolerance of religions, castes, races, creeds etc. Political and social conflicts had never been a part of His philosophy. Therefore, when carrying on with global networking, the organizations located in India and beyond should try to avoid social conflicts and organizational politics, if any. Purity of purpose and not politics, social cohesion and not social conflicts, humanism and not egoism or egotism should be the guiding principles of Saism. Only the true followers of Shri Sai will adhere to these Cardinal Principles of Baba.
(IV) All organizations, whether located in India or abroad, should establish a strong communication channel with each other and exchange news, views and pictures. Sharing of information often leads to the sharing of happiness.
(V) Each organization, small, medium or large, should respect the other organizations/temples, their trustees, devotees and activities. Each temple should encourage the devotees visiting that temple to visit other temples as well. Members of different Sai Baba temples should help each other in any manner possible.
(VI) SSGF is creating an information data bank by collecting information from a large number of temples and trusts located in India and abroad about their current activities as well as the activities they propose to take up during the year of the Centenary Celebration. The list of such possible activities has been suggested to the associated temples and trusts by email.
(VII) One of the major activities towards Globalisation is to hold Global, National, State-Level or even temple level conferences and seminars to discuss and propagate the philosophy of Baba and also to exchange views and ideas on days convenient to all. Such initiatives, of Sai devotees of one place sharing experience with the devotees of the other places, across the Globe, would encourage unity among the Sai devotees as also create a common approach to the movement.
(VIII) Globalization also entails creation of Sai literature like books on Shirdi Sai Baba in different Indian and foreign languages. Many such books written on Baba by a large number of Indian writers and a small number of foreign writers have not been translated into other languages. This should be done. Writers on Baba from foreign lands should be encouraged to write more articles and books about Baba. Similar activities should be undertaken through magazines in different languages. Research subjects can be undertaken and supported.
(IX) There should be a common methodology of worship and common method of celebration of important days and events by all trusts/organizations/temples to the extent possible. No doubt that some amount of variance would always be there given the rules/regulations and facilities of a temple situated in a particular country. This is always acceptable.
Globalization cannot be constructed merely as a series of physical or mental activities. It calls for the inculcation of the true spirit of globalization, adhering to the core values for which Baba stood throughout His life. This calls for a lot of understanding between the different organisations and also a sense of tolerance of each other. After all, Sai Baba is the Master and all the devotees are His followers and servants.
Jai Shri Sai
C.B. Satpathy, Gurugram
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