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26. OM SRI SAI AAPASTHAMBA SUTHRAAYA NAMAH.

People belonging to the higher castes in India have Gothra & Suthra. They trace their spiritual ancestry to a sage. Baba has declared that He is Siva-Sakthi, which condescended to bless the spiritual lineage of the sage Bharadwaja. Baba has also declared that He has condescended to bless the sage Aapastamba who wrote a Suthra (School of Interpretation) of Rituals and Dharmic Practices. In his fourteenth year, Baba declared 'I am Sai Baba of Shirdi, of the  Bharadwaja Gothra and Aapasthamba sutra. Apastamba according to the Brahmapurana underwent ascetic practices for many years and at last realised His life's ambition visualising Siva and receiving His Blessings. Sai Baba of Shirdi used to say that He was a Brahmin of the Bhaaradwaja Gothra and of the Apasthamba school of vedic rituals. So, this declaration by Baba in His fourteenth year is further proof of the identity of the two Sais.