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|Baba, The Black Sheep (standard:other, 5389 words)|
|Author: Juggernaut||Added: Nov 04 2010||Views/Reads: 2457/1723||Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)|
|A story on people that potray themselves as mystics.|
Baba, The Black Sheep By Subba Rao No parent names his son Baba. It is suffix to a given name in India, particularly in the South, when a person attains some position, spiritually speaking, and generally given to older people. This is in total contrast to the word Bubba in the United States that refers to men with gaudy, ungentlemanly, or coarse behavior, particularly from southern states. Practically, anybody can call himself Baba, since the suffix Baba is a self-proclamation to Babaship. Among Hindus, Brahmins known to have good knowledge on scriptures could be good candidates for the title. But anybody can scale the invincible barrier that surrounds and protect the Brahmins to claim Babaship with self-proclamation. A Baba could be from any caste among Hindus, or even a Muslim can be a Baba, as long as he cultivates appropriate attire and learns some tricks to convince people that it is to their own benefit to become followers or believers. Self-proclamation to Babaship is almost an equal opportunity (self) employment in India. Followers of a Baba can change their allegiance from one to another, if they were for some reason disappointed in their Baba. For example, if their Baba were to be exposed as a fake. Few Baba stood the test of time and retained their followers, so that they even trained and left their heir apparent to run the show. Nobody is against people calling themselves Baba. Satyanarayana was a school dropout, one day he gave himself the suffix Baba, and became Satyanarayana Baba. Then dropped Satyanarayana altogether from his name and started calling himself Baba and the others started to call him Baba to his satisfaction. This was a clear-cut case of self-proclamation to Babaship, since no body bestowed him with the title. People just don't change their names for nothing. He spent years in reading scriptures and practiced how to present the material eloquently in public. He attracted small gatherings at his home and then at the nearby temple where he became a resident speaker on various religious topics. Like copper metal which transmits heat or electric energy as fast as it absorbs it, a Baba has to learn quickly and retain the subject matter to present eloquently. To enhance the legitimacy of a Baba, the physical appearance plays an important role. One should sport a beard (uncut preferred), and long hair; also wear appropriate loose-fitting garb or loin cloth in shades of yellow, orange, or red, representing the color of purity of the sun at dawn or dusk to absorb and destroy sin and sustain morality. Application of ash or pure limestone powder to shoulders and forehead would symbolize purity and disinterest in worldly comforts. When Juggernaut was thirteen years old, after school he took private math lessons from his schoolteacher at his home. In that area, he first encountered a man wandering around butt naked. People called him Digambaram Baba (naked Baba). He was always naked, except once in a while when he wrapped a rag around his waist. He was always talking to himself in sign language while walking. On a few occasions, Juggernaut found Dhigambaram Baba far away from the street where his teacher lived. He walked slowly, non-stop for hours, covering many streets. Some people, mostly women, walk a few feet behind him, asking for solutions to their personal problems. They followed the wandering Baba, for his response. To walk behind a naked man in public is something that needs courage, particularly for women. Perhaps, if someone were that desperate, they would attempt anything. Nobody knows Digambaram Baba's religion or caste. Many believe that he was a Muslim; his followers were mostly old people and Hindus. His body from head to toe never seemed to receive an intentional wash, though his slow walks in the rain did some unintentional cleansing. People believed that Baba could foretell the future or answer any troubling question, if he was in a mood to do so. Otherwise, he might wander miles without responding to the queries. The followers carried some ‘prasad' (sacred gift) such as a fruit for him. Juggernaut wished to confront him one day when nobody was around and ask about his own future. But this seemed impossible he could never walk behind a naked Click here to read the rest of this story (444 more lines)
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