It must be sometime between 2005 to 2013. When ever I find time, my friends and myself used to clean the holy Dhuni in Nagasai Mandir in Coimbatore. I was so attached Dhuni – The sacred fire of Saibaba that I won’t allow any new guys to clean it or even the touch the iron rods which we used to dig in the Dhuni to let ashes fall down.
In between those years, I was in Mumbai for a while but when ever I am back in Coimbatore, I take care of Dhuni.
How much I love those days? Its truly a good time in my life because I served Sai as if Saibaba has given that job to me. I used to drench myself in holy Udi of Saibaba because I also get down the Dhuni tank where the hot ashes has to be wiped out to let it cool down. I am little weak and hence I say loudly “Naagasai…Saibaba….Mahalakshmi” when ever I get into the Dhuni tank. I can’t do that work if I don’t chant loudly.
My parents allowed me to do such a work which I have to mention because many people assume that the one who serves in temple are loosers in life. My Mom feels little sad since I come home wearing a Shirt covered with grey ashes. Once my Mom asked me to look at a Painter who was washing his feet, hands, wearing a new shirt when he leaves home after work. She told me, when you come back home from temple, your shirt is full of ashes and you come as if you do labour job somewhere. She had told me several times to keep a seperate shirt while cleaning Dhuni. Somehow, it never worked for me because there wasn’t a place in temple to store another shirt.
In 2011, I gradually reduced the work I did in Dhuni but I made sure friends I trust are doing this job. I don’t let any new guys to even touch Dhuni because they don’t understand its divinity. I don’t like guys showing off in the name of Sai seva.
Later, they reconstructed the holy Dhuni. Now a days, its easy to dig Dhuni and take our ashes because the ashes easily fell into the dhuni tank. So we guys don’t have to work that hard with the iron rods. I still remember the days when the skin in my palm would tear off because of holding iron rod and digging Dhuni when there’s still some fire burning in it. My eyes will be filled with ashes. My whole self will be working for my Sai.
Why am I writing about this today?
Last night, I spoke to my Sai friend Iyshwarya for a while. Then, I went to the Saibaba temple near office.
I will be alone in temple during weekdays and the shej aarti was already over. I was sitting outside the temple in the corner haveing little prasad.
One of this lady asked if I serve in Dhuni in Nagasai Mandir? I told her Yes.
She told me “Here also some guys came to take out Udi from Dhuni and filtered it but there are still many ashes remaining”
She added ‘On a Sunday, when you are free, come here and do it”
I din’t like the way she described the guys who cleaned the Dhuni earlier. She said in Tamil “Vandhaanunga, Chinna pasanga”
You can say they are too young for the work. No issues. But when she mentioned them without respect in Tamil, I got annoyed. Does She think She’s a boss if she built a Sai temple? In Nagasai Mandir, I have served for several years and each and every time, I served with love and personal commitment. Not once anyone spoke ill of me or my friends who served Dhuni. No one would come to watch what we were doing. All the trustees in Nagasai mandir trusted us and hence we also enjoyed serving in temple.
Now a days, people build Sai temples and they assume they are big shot. Listen. Respect people who serve in temple. Simply speaking to me and convincing me to clean Dhuni would never work. I will only see if you respect other guys who are serving in your temple.
I also told her that now a days, I reduced serving in temple as I am little busy.
I can’t say on face I won’t be able to clean Dhuni in this temple. I just felt She don’t know to respect people.
This is how it works!
If you own a temple or any other organization to serve people, all you have to do is mind your business. You don’t even have to interact with people who come to serve there. Everyone knows their responsibilities and they will do and go back home. Pleasing me or anyone won’t help you. If you are good, Sai will send good people to get his job done.
Beyond all this, Sai Baba decides what I should do. I believe that I have done enough cleaning Dhuni in Nagasai mandir and those moments – I would cherish for lifetime. I won’t get that time again in my life. Now, my focus is on practically helping people realize the truth. The truth that if they work hard, if they have immense patience, Sai will really be with them.
You don’t have to do pooja, you don’t have to go to Shirdi, Simply remember Sai..Sai..Sai in mind and do your work sincerely. Sai will bless you with successful life.