Aarti is a devotional prayer that has devotees standing before the image of a deity or consecrated saint accompanied with singing of devotional songs in unison. This singing is often accompanied by other musical instruments such as bells, gongs and cymbals. In Hindu rituals aarti is a rich and vibrant event, when the deity is adorned with garlands and showered with flowers along with aromatic incense sticks and waving of panchmukhi diya or five-wicks oil lamp around His figure in clockwise.
offering the aarti before the deity, it is brought before all the
devotees, who then pass their hands by turns over the sacred flame of
the aarti lamp and quickly bring them closer to their faces and heads as
a gesture of receiving the auspicious energy from the holy flame.
At Shirdi, there are four aarti sessions all through the day, during
which devotees congregate invoking Sai Baba, seeking His blessings.
Saibaba's aarti is sung in Marathi. As a living manifestation of the
abstract concept of God, Shri Sai Baba is an epitome of the supreme
power that guides, protects and support. This yearning that has created
a bond of love and faith between Sai and his devotee is expressed
through the aarti.
Aarti is performed four times everyday in Saipuram. The day begins with
the invocation of Shri Sai Baba with the morning aarti called the Kakkad
Aarti at 5.15am. Madhyan Aarti or Midday aarti is held at
12noon. The evening aarti or the Sandhya Aarti takes place at
6.30pm and the day closes with Shej Aarti or Night aarti at 10pm. With
Shej Aarti darshan of Shri Saibaba gets over till the next day. Priests
attend on him during all these rituals and rites. During these aartis
devotees make offerings to Saibaba in the form of new clothes, flowers,
fruits and sweets, etc. A little bit of Udi or sacred ash is also given
to the devotees as a token of love from Shri Sai at the end of the