A Dhuni is a sacred fire which is considered to be very auspicious for Shirdi Baba devotees since Baba himself had maintained one throughout his life. Fire symbolizes purity and it has the capacity to purify all that it consumes. Sai Baba used to maintain the Dhuni in Shirdi and distribute the udhi to all devotees who would seek his blessings. Miraculously, the fortunate souls who came in contact with his presence would get their problems solved by his grace and through the udhi (sacred ash).
The dhuni here at Sai Darshan was started on July 2001 Gurupurnima day. On that auspicious day we intalled 28 manifestation of God in the form of Idols for worship. All the pilgrims and devotees were anxiously awaiting to witness the start of the dhuni, a rare opportunity. Guru Maa was immersed in thoughts of her own Guru and had kept a copper plate of wood pieces in her room for worshiping as a purification, when lo and behold a divine flame arose on its own from the wood pieces. Maa understood this to be a divine omen from Sai Baba and immediatley caught hold of the plate and proceeded towards the crowd of devotees at Dwarakamai.
Carefully holding the flaming wood pieces on the copper plate in front of one and all Maa placed it into the fire place meant for housing the sacred fire. Now the Dhuni is fed with many varieties of lumber five to six times a day. The udhi which has a miraculous healing effect is distributed to all devotees as prasad.
By distribution the sacred Udhi Baba would remind people that life is impermenant and once man dies his body is reduced to ashes. So by wearing the Udhi on the head, one is always reminded that life is short and we must utilize every moment wisely by thinking of the lord.