In early 1900s, the environment in Shirdi was a multicultural place where devotees from different faiths freely practiced their religious beliefs without fear of persecution or ridicule. Baba always allows devotees to adhere to their own beliefs and practices.
Once, a devotee by the name of Kusa Bhav visited Baba. Kusa Bhav was hardly in his early twenties when he had met a guru who taught him several mystical mantras. With the aid of these mantras, Bhav would produce various objects out of thin air. Unlike real miracles, these objects were merely transported from other dimensions and were not a product of Divine Will, like one demonstrated by Baba.
When Bhav arrived in Shirdi, Baba did not let him enter the place. Baba said, “If you want to come here, you must give up your attachment to lower powers. You are using them to fool people.” Kusa Bhav loved Baba deeply and immediately gave up the practice of lower powers. Baba asked him to read the Guru Charita 108 times as an act of purification, which Bhav willingly did.
One day, Bhav visited Baba during lunch time. Baba was eating an onion with bread. Seeing this, Bhav said, “Baba, today is Ekadashi (eleventh holy day of the Hindu Calendar). Why are you eating onions today? They are prohibited on Ekadashi.”
Baba was in a playful mood that day and said, “Child, I did not eat onion. I ate sweet potato. Do you want proof?” Saying this Baba vomited a sweet potato in lieu of the onion He had actually eaten. Kusa Bhav was young but very intelligent. He immediately snatched the potato from Baba’s hand and gulped it down with great relish. Baba feigned anger and said, “Arre, why did you eat my ushti (something I had already eaten)?”
Baba had indeed eaten an onion but His will is so powerful, the onion had transformed into a sweet potato. In Parthi, Baba had said several times: “I can transform earth into sky and sky into earth. All powers are at the tip of my palm. My will is supreme.”
Yet, Baba was deeply touched by his faith and granted Kusa Bhava a boon. Baba said: “From today whenever you think about Me, the vibhuti from Dwarakamai will manifest in your palms the moment you think about Me.”
Baba is such a kind and powerful incarnation. Knowing that Kusa Bhav had given up lower powers, Baba granted him the ability to produce vibhuti which was bound to benefit devotees. In 1940’s or 50’s when Narasimha Swami, a saint, visited Kusa Bhav, he manifested warm vibhuti straight from Baba’s Dwarakamai just by thinking about Him. This was nearly thirty years after Shirdi Baba’s Mahasamadhi.