Jog did the arati puja in the masjid and the chavdi, thrice a day and continued
till Baba’s Mahasamadhi. Besides puja to Baba, he was also daily reading and explaining
Jnaneshwari and Eknathi Bhagwat in Sathewada to the pilgrim-visitors as he was a
renowned Sanskrit scholar. He thus served both Sai Baba and Upasani Baba till his
last breath. His soul was a blessed one.
Sakharam Hari alias Bapusaheb Jog was a resident of Poona and had no children and
after his retirement from P.WDepartment in 1906, came and lived in Shirdi with his
wife. Both of them had unswerving faith in Baba and served and worshipped Baba with
utmost devotion. After Megha’s death, Jog did the arati puja in the masjid and the
chavdi, thrice a day and continued till Baba’s Mahasamadhi. Thus he performed puja
to Baba for the longest period of seven years. Besides puja to Baba, he was also
daily reading and explaining Jnaneshwari (a dialogue between Lord Krishna and Arjuna)
and Eknathi Bhagwat in Sathewada and the devotees and pilgrims were listening and
was conducting the regular religious classes in Sathewada for the benefit of the
pilgrims. He was highly proficient in Sanskrit language and also in religious scriptures.
After giving permission to Jog to read pothi daily in the Sathewada, Baba would
ask the devotees who came for his darshan to go to Sathewada and listen to Jnaneshvari
which is a commentary on the Bhagvat Gita and is also called Bhavarth Deepika The
11th Chapter of Bhavarth Deepika or Bhagvat Gita, also called (Nath) Bhagvat is
the quintessence of Eknath’s exposition of spiritual pursuits.
Jog served Baba in this fashion for several years and even then he did not attain
mental peace and contentment and did not acquire spiritually. Once in Shirdi, his
wife was unwell and was not taking any medicines as she had unswerving faith in
Baba, but her illness did not come down. So she lost patience and wanted to go away
from Shirdi to her parents. But when she was about to go away from Shirdi, she suddenly
became well and did not leave Shirdi.
Once Baba asked Jog to give dakshina, knowing fully well that he did not have any
money with him. Consequently he became angry. But Baba told him not to get angry
and lose temper.
In the past once Jog lent money to some one and he did not repay. Based on his bad
financial position, he wanted to go to Aurangabad town to recover
the money from that person, if necessary by legal process and approached Baba for
his permission to go to Aurangabad. But Baba advised him not to go and refused permission.
Baba also informed that the debtor himself would come to Shirdi shortly and advised
him not to worry about it but have patience. Though Jog was unhappy in not getting
Baba’s permission in this regard but he was helpless and stayed in Shirdi only.
Then all of a sudden, the debtor came to Shirdi on his own and offered the principal
amount to Jog who was happy at the turn of events. This had happened even though
the debt was time barred and was also without any effort from the side of Jog. Any
amount of legal process would not have helped him to recover the money when the
debt was time barred. This was really a great miracle.
Once Jog wanted to perform annual ceremony to his deceased father and as he could
not get a Brahmin priest of his sub caste for the purpose, he approached Baba’s
permission to go to Kopargaon to get a priest. But Baba did not give permission
to leave Shirdi. When he again asked on some other day, Baba again refused permission
and also informed him that the Brahmin priest of the same sub caste would be coming
on the particular day and that he would have no problem in the matter. On the day
the ceremony was to be performed, two Brahmin priests of his sub caste came suddenly
to Shirdi, had darshan of Baba and then went to Jog’s house on Baba’s instructions.
Jog performed his father’s annual ceremony with their help. Jog was very happy at
the unexpected turn of events and their arrival to Shirdi on that particular day.
This was an example to show that Baba would take care of the needs of the devotees
even in small matters.
From Jan,1912 onwards, Jog started performing arati to Baba in the masjid and also
in the chavadi till the Mahasamadhi of Baba.
One day, Jog told Baba that even though he was serving Baba and doing puja and performing
arati to Baba in the masjid and the chavadi, he did not get mental peace and asked
Baba as to when he was likely to get mental peace and Baba’s blessings. Baba told
him that he should complete his enjoyment or result of his sinful acts in his previous
births.Baba also told him that he should cultivate the habit of conquering anger,
desire, and attachment and also resort to begging, and then only he would deserve
to be blessed and he would then attain eternal peace.Afterwards, Jog’s wife passed
away and he lost worldly interest and developed a sense of detachment. He
then became a sanyasi (an ascetic) and started begging food for his living. As per
Baba’s words, all these happened and in the process he became totally free and detached,
attained beatitude and supreme happiness. After Baba's Mahasamadhi, he then moved
to Sakori (which was in glory; also visit the following paragraphs) and became a
pujari (priest) to Upasani Baba in Sakori. Finally he passed away peacefully at
the age of 70 years in 1926. His samadhi is there in Sakori near Shirdi just opposite
to the ashram. He thus served both Sai Baba and Upasani Baba till his last breath.
His soul was a blessed one.
Sakori: During 1917 Upasani Maharaj laid the foundation for establishing Shri Upasani
Kanyakumari Sthan or a hermitage for the spinsters meant to enable young Bramhacharins
girls (spinsters) to learn Sanskrit and Vedas as well as to perform all the ritualistic
functions according to Vedas and Upanishads. The participation of women in such
functions was hitherto prohibited. The Sthan is situated at Sakori, about 6 KMs
from Shirdi, in a quiet and calm village.This is actually a hermitage for spinsters
to learn Sanskrit language, Vedas, Upanishads and perform yajnas or homas/sacrificial
religious ceremonies with offerings to fire. It is equipped with modern amenities
like mandaps, rooms for residents and guests, surrounded by little gardens. It was
a haven of equanimity and purity with an atmosphere charged with positive vibrations.
This ashram/hermitage stands as a proud monument of spiritual inspiration, a mighty
creation of a simple ascetic who dared to elevate women to higher levels of spiritual
growth and freedom and who proved that the women also could perform religious rituals
on par with the men. This was an ideal and a revolutionary scheme started or kindled
by Upasani Maharaj. The credit goes to him.
The first disciple of Upasani Maharaj was Godavari Matha who was admitted to the
ashram when she was 10 years old. She was from Shegaon (the residence of Saint Gajanan
Maharaj), Akola District in Maharashtra and was born in 1914. Upasani Maharaj appointed
her as his spiritual successor before attaining samadhi in Sakori on 24.12. 1941.
Godavari Matha attained samadhi on 11th of August 1990. She named no successor.
Samadhis of Shri Upasani Maharaj and Godavari Mata are within the ashram premises.
There is a yagna mandap. Yagnas were performed seven times in a year during all
major Hindu festivals. Lord Ganesha visage or appearance which appeared
on its own on a tree miraculously, can be seen. Devotees can worship the visage
and their wishes are fulfilled. Dattatreya temple is located opposite the ashram.