THE STORY OF SANT KUKADARU SAHEB
Sant Dasturji Jamshedji Ervad Sorabji Kukadaru Saheb was born at Surat on May 26, 1831, on Mah Avan, Roj Zamyad. Dasturji Jamshedji Kukadaru Saheb was a pious man who led a pure and righteous life. He remained away from worldly ways and personal publicity. His greatness lay in his simplicity and humanity. His material needs were restricted to the bare needs and necessities of life.
Dastur Azar Kaiwan Bin Azar Gushasp, who was Dasturji Kukadaru Saheb’s spiritual guru, gave to Kukadaru Saheb the following Nirang.
BARVAJE-E-KAIWAN-SAFRE- HAR FE-NAAM
RA VAN-E-LA-TEEMAR-TEEN-E- U
Dasturji Kukadaru Saheb was the spiritual guide to Ervad Nadarsha Navroji Aibara and he gave him a special Nirang as under:
“YA NOORE DASTAGEER, YA DASTAGEERE NOOR
KARAM KAR KAREEMA RAHEM KARO YA PARVARDEGAR
MADAD KARO YA NABEE JARTHOST TARI PADSHAHI”
Dasturji Kukadaru Saheb led a simple and frugal life. He would spend the whole day in prayers. A strict vegetarian, he would eat just one meal a day – usually khichdi and a little ghee. It is said that he used to cook the rice himself by placing the vessel in the sun while reciting certain holy Maanthras or Nirangs.
Dasturji Kukadaru Saheb served as Panthaky of the holy fire at Seth Shapurji Kappawalla Agiary in Mumbai. He commanded tremendous respect among the Behdins. Whenever he attended a wedding or Navjote, the whole gathering would stand up as a mark of respect.
Dasturji Kukadaru Saheb set a living example of how powerful a true prayer can be and how the recitation of the Avesta, with a clean heart, can get one really close to Dadar Ahura Mazda. He based his whole life on the three main tenets of Zoroastrianism – Manashni, Gavashni, Kunashni, to be pure in mind, words and deeds. Such holy souls are born once in several centuries.
Dasturji Kukadaru Saheb performed several noteworthy miracles. He had also made many accurate predictions. It is said that his third eye had opened, due to which he was able to foretell future events accurately He had predicted accurately the time of death of Dastur Peshotan Sanjana, Sir Dinshaw Petit, England’s Queen Victoria and several others.
His great miracles are remembered by people even today. During the life of Dasturji Kukadaru, Anjuman Atash Behram was being constructed at Dhobi Talao. The Trustees were short of Rs. 10,000. All the Trustees were in a quandary as to where to get such a large sum from Some Zarathushtis, who were true devotees of Kukadaru Saheb, thought of approaching him and said he would show the way He also had opponents. One of them said: “Kukadaru Saheb is a very poor Mobed. From where can he give us Rs. 10,000?” But those who had faith in him went to him one day at 5 p.m. One Zarathushti, who opposed him, also went along.
Kukadaru Saheb was engrossed in prayer at Kappawalla Agiary. After finishing his prayers, he asked the Zarathushtis the reason for their arrival. His devotees stated that Rs.10,000 was the deficit for building a Hall at the Anjuman Atash Behram. Kukadaru Saheb, by a signal from his inner self, asked them to come next evening at 5 p.m. with a brick. He told them not to buy a new brick from a shop, but to bring one fallen by the wayside. The people went in search of a brick the next morning. From morning to noon and noon to evening, they could not find a brick on the road. By evening, the Zarathushti who used to speak against Kukadaru Saheb stumbled and fell on the road. When he got up with the support of a brick, the other Zarathushtis said: “We have found the brick. Now we must go before Dasturji Kukadaru Saheb.”
They all went to meet Kukadaru Saheb at the Kappawalla Agiary Dasturji Kukadaru was engrossed in prayers. After finishing his prayers, they showed him the brick. Dasturji Kukadaru told them to place the brick in a bounded square (Pavi) in the next room. Those people who had faith in Kukadaru Saheb said: “Tomorrow evening, surely there will be a miracle.” But the Zarathushti who used to criticize Kukadaru Saheb said: “Tomorrow Kukadaru Saheb will be put to shame.”
On the third day at 5 p.m., all the Zarathushtis went before Kukadaru Saheb. That day Kukadaru Saheb spent the entire day in prayer. After finishing, he told them: “Whatever you find in the bound square in the next room, take that.” Then the Zarathushti who was against him said: “We have come to collect Rs.10,000, not bricks and stones.”
Dasturji Kukadaru replied to that Zarathushti: “If bricks and stones are your destiny; you will get only that.” But those who had respect for Kukadaru Saheb went in and to their great surprise found that the brick had transformed into gold. This was a great miracle. Kukadaru Saheb had not even seen where the Zarathushtis had kept the brick in the adjoining room. But he had prayed to Dadar Ahura Mazda and urged that some path be opened to build a Hall at the Anjuman Atash Behram. The Zarathushti who used to speak against Kukadaru Saheb saw this grand miracle and bowed his head in shame. He sought forgiveness from Kukadaru Saheb.
Thereafter all the Zarathushtis took the golden brick to weigh it. It fetched exactly Rs.10,000; not a rupee more, nor a rupee less. Out of Rs.10,000, the Anjuman Atash Behram Hall was constructed. That Hall was named Dasturji Jamshedji Sorabji Kukadaru Hall. There is a portrait of Dasturji Kukadaru Saheb in this Hall, below which is a large plaque. Devotees, even today bow there in reverence, pray and light divas.
From Jam-e-Jamshed 3-1-2021