Nobody knows for certain when Sai Baba was born or who his parents were or what his real name was. He arrived one day in 1872 at Shirdi in Maharashtra. He was dressed like a fakir (Muslim ascetic) and lived in a dilapidated mosque but spoke of a Hindu guru, whom he called Venkusa. He seemed to be well acquainted with the Hindi scriptures but at the same time was heard to quote from the Quran. The word Sai is a Persian word meaning ‘saint’ and Baba is a Hindi word meaning ‘father’. As his name would indicate, Sai Baba has both Hindu and Muslim disciples. He did not approve of conversion and believed that everyone had a right to follow his own path to God. Everything that is known about his beliefs however, is deduced from his actions. He was not given to theorizing. Sai Baba died in 1918.