The moment Baba saw Bayaja Bai, he said, “She has been my sister for the last seven births”. When she met Baba as a young lad sitting under the neem tree, the parental feelings took her over as if Sai-Baba was her son. Mrs. Bayaja Patil showered love and cared for young Baba who abruptly would rush to the cactus jungle, an unknown old isolated place. Bayaja Bai, used to go to the woods every noon with a basket on her head containing bread and vegetables.
She roamed in the jungles koss (about 3 miles) after koss, trampling over bushes and shrubs in search of the mad Fakir, and after hunting Him out, fell at His feet. The Fakir sat calm and motionless in meditation, while she placed a leaf before Him, spread the eatables, bread, vegetables etc. thereon and fed Him forcibly. She give Him bread (Bhakari) and salty smash of chana dal (Jhunka) and onion and chilly, simple food items which Baba cherished most. Baba also used to pay a visit to Patil’s house to have lunch (bhojan) of His choice.
Later Saibaba used to go for bhiksha (begging food) to selected houses. One such place was Bayaja Bai’s place. Baba used to stand outside the gate and say loudly “Abade Ajaad Bayaja mami, Roti lao” (God bless you Mother Bayaja, please give bread). Then Bayaja Bai used to invite him into the house but Baba sat in the veranda only. Tatya used to play with Baba against the wish of his mother. Baba never felt for the child like behaviour of Tatya. Bayaja Bai is remembered for her service to Sai with or without knowing his divinity.
When Bayaja Bai, became physically weak due to old age and was not in a condition even to get up from bed, Baba ordered Tatya to remain at the bedside of his mother and do service to her. Now and then He would send Tatya’s close associates like Shama also to be with Tatya. Bayaja Bai was nearing her end. She wanted to see Baba once. Immediately, Baba appeared near her head. His appearance at this last moment gave her divine bliss. Some unexplained joy came to her. She felt that her Atman was happily going towards heaven. Perhaps, this feeling was due to the complete divine darshan Baba gave her. She wanted to say something but words did not come out of her. She took her son Tatya’s hand and put it on Baba’s hand. Having understood her thoughts, Baba assured her that he would look after Tatya from that moment more than his life. She knew that his words were God’s words. After hearing those words from Baba, her Atman left her body and merged in the universe.
When Bayaja expired Baba lamented over her demise. So was the unthinkable tie of love between Bayaja Bai and her family, and Baba the love incarnate.
Wonderful was her faith and service.Baba never forgot her service, Upasana or Penance, by whatever name we call it. Remembering fully what service she rendered, Baba benefited her son magnificently. Both the son and the mother had great faith in the Fakir, Who was their God. Baba often said to them that “Fakiri (Mendicancy) was the real Lordship as it was everlasting, and the so called Lordship (riches) was transient”.
The present generation of Patil family, still observe meticulously and very religiously the ritual of giving offerings of Thali (Naivedya) containing the above mentioned food items to Baba at Dwarakamayi.