Rama-Navami is the greatest festival celebrated at Shirdi, another fuller account,
as published in Sai Leela Magazine of 1925, page 197, is also referred to and a summary of the festival,
as related in both these accounts is attempted here.
Pooja of the Sadguru or Guru Poornima is the greatest festival celebrated at Shirdi,
Gurupoornima ("poornima" means full moon) is the day on which disciples and devotees
honour and felicitate their guru and seek his or her special blessings.
Although it is not a major festival for everyone in India, it is of great
importance in Shirdi, being the only festival which Baba asked devotees to celebrate.
It falls on the full moon day of the month of Ashad in the Hindu calendar (June-July).
The festival originated in the Buddha's time when the monks used to take diksha
(instructions on their spiritual practice) at the beginning of the annual
four-month rains-retreat. The practice was then borrowed by the Jain tradition
and later by the Hindus.
Vijayadasami is a major festival celebrated throughout
India under different names and with regional variations,
as the victory of good over evil. It is also known as Dusserah
and is the culmination of the nine days of goddess worship.,
For Sai devotees, it is venerated as the holy day that their
beloved gurudeva attained mahasamadhi (also known as punyatithi)
and is a big festival in Shirdi.
This was also the day on which the statue of Baba "came to life"
and was inaugurated in the Samadhi Mandir. For devotees of
Sri Sainathuni Sarath Babuji it is a day imbued with additional
significance and joy as it is the same day he took birth in 1954.