Essential teachings of Shirdi Sai Baba

SOURCE: ” Sai Baba of Shirdi – a Unique Saint” – By M V Kamath &  V B Kher — Jaico Publishing house ISBN 81-7224-030-9

The following are the collections of some of the sayings and teachings of Shirdi Saibaba to his devotees:



  • God is and there is nothing higher than Him. He is perfect, infinite and eternal. He is omnipresent, omnipotent and omniscient. He is the Creator, Sustainer and Destroyer. Surrender voluntarily and totally to His will. Not a blade of grass moves without His will. Trust in Him and do the right. Let the inner light (enlightened conscience) guide all your actions.
  • Do not believe that God is not.
  • God’s name is eternal.
  • This universe is all a leela of God.
  • God is the Lord and the Master. There is no other truth.
  • His ways are unique, mysterious and inscrutable.
  • There is no one higher than God. How he will protect and sustain is known only to him.
  • He is the protector of the poor.
  • He is very compassionate. We falter in our faith in Him and lack sufficient patience.
  • Herculean effort is needed for the attainment of God.
  • Without unflinching faith and patience, you will not see Him. One who has both these will undoubtedly find Him.
  • Who says he is out of reach? He is there in the tabernacle of our heart, nearer to us than the fingernail to the finger.
  • God protects the righteous.
  • It needs insight to recognize God.
  • His will be done. He will show the way and all your heart’s desire will be fulfilled.
  • Who can really satisfy the desire of another? For the more you give, the more the desires grow. It is only the Lord and the Master who can give that which is everlasting.

Karma Yoga

  • Perform your duty conscientiously  and with detachment regarding yourself not as a doer but only as an instrument in His hands.
  • Surrender the fruit of action to Him so that action will not harm you or bind you.
  • Do good and offer it to God. He will bless you.

Right Behavior

  • Let your love and compassion flow to all  creatures of God.
  • Do not engage in controversy.  For every ten words you hear, speak only one word, if that is necessary.
  • Even the learned are confused. Then what of us? Listen and be silent.
  • Words (of others) cannot harm you; bear with others patiently.
  • Accept your lot cheerfully without comparing yourself with others.
  • Do not speak ill of others.
  • If you injure others, I suffer.
  • I feel disgusted when you quarrel with others.
  • Members in a family are bound to have differences. But do not quarrel.
  • Do not give tit for tat for each is answerable for his own actions.
  • Do not remain idle but engage yourself in some useful activity.
  • Read sacred books. Be moderate in your food and recreation.
  • Do good and God will bless you. Do evil and you will displease Him.
  • If you do good, good will follow.
  • Great is the reward of virtue. The vicious will suffer.
  • Be content with your lot.
  • You need neither praise nor blame others.
  • One who has received God’s grace is silent, but he who falls from His grace talks too much. His grace must be earned by merit.
  • remove the fangs of the serpent before he can harm you. Let us see to what length he goes.
  • He who lays hands on the devotee of God will suffer for it.
  • One who means well will do well.
  • Practice before you preach.
  • If wealth is used judiciously, it will be beneficial.
  • Do not cover others’ wealth.
  • Wholesome food will bring good health.  A man of restraint is better than a man of indulgence.
  • Are we born merely for sensual pleasures? The mind is tricky for it ensnares us in temptation. Restrain it to attain peace.
  • It is renanubandh (ties of previous births) which brings human beings, birds and animals to each other. Therefore do not shoo away anyone, even the meekest.
  • Be hospitable to anyone who comes to you. Give water to the thirsty, bread to the hungry, clothing to the naked and shelter to the homeless and God will bless you.
  • Whatever you give me will come back to you redoubled. If you sow, then only you can reap.

Sai Baba about Himself, his devotees and the people who come to Him

  • I am everywhere and in all places and the whole world is within Me.
  • I move everywhere and anywhere.
  • I pervade the universe. I am both the visible and the invisible.
  • I am unborn, eternal and ever lasting.
  • I am not the body or the senses; I am the eternal sakshi (witness).
  • Know that my spirit is immortal. Know this for yourself.
  • I am God’s slave.
  • I am merciful to all.
  • I am not beholden to anyone except God.
  • People inhabit towns and villages, I live in the jungle.
  • People have a roof over their head; I have none.
  • Even though my children be thousands of miles away, I call them to me.I am happy when they come. I enjoy their company and thrive on it.  I have to care for my children night and day because I am accountable to God for them.
  • I have to go thousands of miles to take care of men.
  • Fear not. I am always with you. I take care of my men, generation after generation, birth after birth.
  • Who can compare with all His munificence that God alone can give? The Lord Himself waits anxiously for the devotees to partake of the treasures that He offers, but instead, people come to me asking for worldly things. When I try to tell them this, nobody pays attention to what I say or listens to me. The coffers are overflowing with treasures, but no one will make the effort to pick up the treasure.
  • I give people what they want in the hope that they will begin to want what I want to give them!
  • I have now grown weary of people’s request for wealth, wife, child. No one wants the treasure I have. I will wait a while and one day, I will quietly leave.
  • Men will throng to Shirdi like ants. Men may come and  men may go. What do we have to do with it? How does it concern us?
  • My Udi (Vibhuthi – Sacred ash) will be most useful for my devotees. Preserve it carefully.
  • I do not babble or whisper any mantra in the ear. Our traditions are different.
  • Men of all sorts, good and bad,  come to my durbar. All are equal in my eyes. I have to care for them equally.
  • All kinds of people, good, bad, wicked, vicious come to my court. Why indulge in gossip about them?
  • Those who sow nettles expect me to give them corn. How can i do so?
  • I never forsake anyone who relies on me.
  • If you cast your burden on me, I will bear it.
  • My eye is ever on those who love me.

  • If one perpetually thinks of me and makes me his sole refuge, I become his debtor and will give my life to save him.
  • I am the bond slave of my devotees. I love devotion.  He who withdraws his heart from the world and loves me is  a true lover and he merges in me like a river in the sea.
  • If one meditates on me, repeats my name and sings about my deeds — he is transformed and his karma is destroyed. I stay by his side always.
  • If you make me the sole object of your thoughts and aims, you will gain paramatma.
  • In whatever faith men worship me, even so do I render to them.
  • Look up at me and I will look after you. Not vain is my promise that I shall ever lighten your burden.
  • There shall be no want in the house of my devotee.
  • Why go for Ganga elsewhere? Hold your palm at my feet — here flows the Ganga.
  • Whatever you do, wherever you may be, ever bear in mind that I am always aware of everything you do.
  • Remember my words even when I am no more. My bones will assure you from my samadhi. It will communicate with you, it will respond to him who surrenders to it.
  • Do not think I am dead and gone. You will hear me from my samadhi and I shall guide you.
  • Though I be no more in in flesh and blood, I shall ever protect my devotees. I shall be with you the moment you think of me.


  • See how selfish people are. When it suits them, they leave their companion. So attach yourself to one who will never forsake you.  There is no such companion except the sadguru. Love the creation, but keep company with the sadguru for his companionship will conduce to your welfare.
  • Once you entrust yourself to the hands of the sadguru, you do not have to worry.
  • One has to accept the guru wholeheartedly and not mechanically.
  • Trust the sadguru fully. This is the only sadhana. Sadguru is all the Gods.
  • For a human being, the guru’s place is preeminent. By keeping utmost faith in him alone, everything is obtained. A devotee’s entire strength is due to his guru. Devotion to guru is superior to devotion to Gods and Goddesses. The guru is the supreme being.


  • I have single horse carriage (the vital breath, praana) but it carries ten to twelve men (organs)
  • I will slay the four bodies (the gross, the subtle, the causal and the mahakaran) .
  • Light dispels darkness.
  • Why grieve or the loss of a son?Everyone has to die one day. In this mortal world, death is inevitable.
  • Whatever may happen, one should remain steadfast and watch everything with detachment.
  • One who is enlightened will not make a noise about it.
  • You cannot escape what is preordained. You may face it with a groan or a smile. Only that choice is yours.
  • Earth will return to earth and the soul will fly away.

Related reading:

Brief Life History of Shirdi Sai Baba


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