Shirdi: Devotion at its best near Mumbai
The Shirdi shrine is a world famous shrine near Mumbai and a must visit for all those seeking divine intervention. If you make a list of must visit tourist places near Mumbai, this will top the list.
Shirdi may not technically fit the jargon of tourist places near Mumbai, yet it continues to attract a lot o people from Mumbai as well as other parts of the country, and ranks as a prime shrine of devotion in Maharashtra.
Shirdi is famous because it was the shrine of the great Saint Sai Baba and can thus be counted among the list of religious tourist places near Mumbai. A large number of hymns, songs, movies as well as television serials have been made in praise of the fame and virtue as well as the charisma of Sai Baba around whom the entire town of Shirdi is structured.
Maharashtra attracts a large number of devotees because of their belief and faith in Sai Baba. The Shirdi shrine trust is amongst the largest temple trusts of all times. It receives a large number of donations all round the year from devotees who have firm belief in Sai Baba. These donations are used to keep the shrine intact and running and also for the purpose of charity of the needy devotees who have nowhere to go and hence come to the shrine in search of shelter and solace. This is one of the reasons why it is among the prominent tourist places near Mumbai.
The distance between Shirdi and Mumbai is around 265 kms. The closest city to Shirdi is Ahmednagar. It is well connected to the rest of Maharashtra by rail via the Shirdi railway station, and there is also a wide network of roadways. It however does not have an airport yet. The Shirdi airport is still under construction and should be up and running pretty soon.
The miracle and charm of the Sai Baba of Shirdi surpasses all kinds of faiths. He is worshipped as the Great Sai by the Hindus, whereas for the Muslims he is the fakir saint or the renouncer who is also known as the Pir in Sufism. It is said that till date there is a great deal of uncertainty about the actual faith of Sai Baba. This means that it is still not clear whether he was a Hindu or a Muslim. Throughout his life he tried to be a moral or rather a spiritual guru to his disciples because he wanted them to attain the path of peace. The disciples of Sai Baba have said that he was a man of many miracles. They said that at times he used to visit them in their dreams and tell them about the solutions to their worries. Some have also claimed that they have seen him meditate, as well as levitate among the many other miracles that they believe were undertaken by him.
Apart from the shrine, Shirdi also has a couple of markets, and a famous mosque which is known as the Dwarkamai Mosque, which is a clear example of the mixing of faiths in the particular region.
Shirdi may this be termed as one of those tourist places near Mumbai which not only calms the body but provides nourishment to the soul as well.
This post is submitted by Jaidev. Jaidev is a travel writer at ixigo and is passionate about writing destination travel guides and travel tips on topics like Mumbai Tourism. Apart from this he also writes on Holi Parties in Mumbai, National Gallery of Modern Art, Gateway of India and other related stuff.