Thursday 15th May


The Australian group arrived at Guruprasad Poona, India by bus. They met Eruch and the other mandali members. The group assembled in the main room of Guruprasad and sat facing Baba’s chair and the mandali. Baba’s chair was placed in the centre of the room close to the back wall. The men mandali were grouped on the right side and the women on the left. Eruch was MC and the clock struck 9 o’clock.


Eruch (welcomes the group):


It’s nine o’clock, today is the 15th of May; it is the day for the Australian Group of Baba lovers to have Baba’s darshan. This is the third large group that has come here to Guruprasad for Baba’s darshan since the darshan started on 10th April, 1969. We will begin the day’s program by invoking Beloved Baba’s name.




Avatar Meher Baba Ki Jai!

Avatar Meher Baba Ki Jai!

Avatar Meher Baba Ki Jai!




We will begin the Master’s Prayer as usual.


Lee Buchanan (recites the Master’s Prayer):


O Parvardigar, the Preserver and Protector of all!

You are without Beginning and without End;

Non-dual, beyond comparison; and none can measure You.

You are without colour, without expression, without form and without attributes.

You are unlimited and unfathomable, beyond imagination and conception;

eternal and imperishable.

You are indivisible; and none can see You but with eyes divine.

You always were, You always are, and You always will be;

You are everywhere, You are in everything; and You are also beyond everywhere and beyond everything.

You are in the firmament and in the depths. You are manifest and unmanifest, on all planes, and beyond all planes.

You are in the three worlds, and also beyond the three worlds.

You are imperceptible and independent.

You are the Creator, the Lord of Lords, the Knower of all minds and hearts;

You are omnipotent and omnipresent.

You are Knowledge Infinite, Power Infinite, and Bliss Infinite.

You are the ocean of Knowledge, All-Knowing, Infinitely Knowing; the Knower of the past, the present and the future; and You are Knowledge itself.

You are all-merciful and eternally benevolent.

You are the Soul of souls, the One with infinite attributes.

You are the trinity of Truth, Knowledge and Bliss.

You are the Source of Truth, the Ocean of Love. You are the Ancient One, the Highest of the High;

You are Prabhu and Parameshwar;

You are the Beyond-God, and the Beyond-Beyond God also;

You are Parabrahma; Paramatma; Allah; Elahi; Yezdan; Ahuramazda; and God the Beloved.

You are named Ezad, the Only One worthy of worship.



Mehera (welcomes the group):


Jai Baba


Mani (speaks for Mehera):


Mehera and all of us are very, very happy that you are all here today gathered before Beloved Baba for His darshan, and to receive His love. We bow before your love for Baba. Jai Baba!


Eruch (translates the Arti in English):


The women mandali will now sing in Gujarati an arti composed by Baba many, many years ago for the benefit of His closest disciples. He composed this arti Himself so that we can sing the arti befitting the Avatar. The translation of the arti in English is:


Oh God command that the fire of our ignorance be extinguished.

Your lovers yearn for You to bestow upon them the light of faith.

Oh Murshid Meher Baba we lay our heads at your feet.

Oh Meher Baba You have made Yourself perfectly aware of Your Godhood.

You are the Lord of Truth. You are the lover and the Beloved in one.

Being the torrent of infinite Knowledge, You are the ocean of oneness.

Oh Master bestow upon us, the wayfarers, the knowledge of Ezad.

The only one worthy of worship.

For You, Oh Paramatma, are the omniscient and are divine knowledge itself.

Give us to drink of the cup of God’s Love, that we may become intoxicated.

Oh Saki, we offer our lives in sacrifice to You. Give us this cup.

Only if You steer our ship while in mid ocean can we remain afloat.

Oh! Meher Baba, the Captain of our ship, you are our protector.


Women Mandali (sing Arti):


Boojaaway naar jallatni ay kar

Kudratnay farmaa too,

Chhay laagi aash bhaktonay kay

bakshay nooray eemaa too.

Ayaa Moorshad Meher Baba charanapar

tujnaa dhariay sar.

Khoodaanaa zaatathi waakef thaee

betho Meherbaa too.

Too chhay maalik hakikatno, too

aashek bhi ney aaref bhi,

Too chhay dariyaa-ay wahedat

maarayfatno, hoee toofaa too.



Eruch (reads cable):


Francis Brabazon has received this cable from Avatar’s Abode, Woombye:


“Jai Baba! Love to Aussie darshaneers and mandali.”


Signed, Robert, Lorna, and Rhada.




Jai Baba!





Before Francis begins to give his address to the lovers of Baba, I will have to tell you something regarding your stay in Poona. Even although the stay is so short, yet the announcements we find so long, because we live in the world.




The women in this group are to come to Guruprasad today, this evening, at five thirty and stay until seven thirty, to meet Mehera, Mani and the women Mandali. The women mandali want to get acquainted with the women from Australia. So this will be a totally exclusive session this evening for the women. We have also fixed a day for the men mandali and that will be the day after tomorrow, the 17th from five thirty to seven thirty.

Each one will be given this program so you can see at a glance when the different events are scheduled. One important thing I would say to you all is that these are the few days that Baba has given to you, His dear lovers of Australia, and Baba would want you all to open up – don’t feel reserved – feel at home in Presence of Baba. This is the day of darshan, the time for you all to have Baba’s darshan. Just pour out your love to Baba. Feel free, and think of how you can best please Him through words, through songs, through skits. I believe that Bill has in mind a skit. I have been told that. And others who can think of anything that would entertain Baba. I am sure John Bruford has in mind some jokes that will please Baba. At Avatar’s Abode, remember John how you made Him laugh?

So we have to feel Baba’s presence and try our best to entertain Him while you are all here for His darshan. It is a great privilege that Baba has given us to be in His presence. We don’t feel His absence over here. I tell you through my own experience; the days that have passed by from 10th April till this day, every day we feel His presence over here, because the lovers from different parts of the world, including India, bring Baba in their hearts.

They come over here to pay their respect to His seat. This is the seat on which He sat and gave audience, darshan. When the crowd was big, this is the hall in which He used to give His darshan. With the mandali there is another hall, you will see later on, He would be sitting here giving darshan to them and discourses, both in the morning and the afternoon. Also He would while away a few minutes with the mandali. It was a pleasant time for the mandali.

Today after Francis finishes his address, each of you will take Baba’s darshan here. Then there is another room, Baba’s bedroom we call it, where Baba sat during His seclusion in the daytime for hours and worked. What work He did we are unaware, but He used to tell us that He worked strenuously, He suffered for humanity. He worked hard sitting alone in that room, door shut, no one to hear Him. That was the only time when no mandali was near Him. After finishing the work, He would clap for a mandali who would run to Him and then attend to Him, otherwise all alone in that room He would sit and do His work. Of course we have many days; I will narrate certain episodes that you would like to hear. Today is not the day for that. I would like you all also to have darshan of the place where Baba sat. It is His resting place, sleeping room, His bedroom you may call it.





And where Baba sat, in that chair, He wouldn’t let us touch that chair—even a part of our dress, by accident, should never touch that chair, not until all the work was finished and we had left Guruprasad.





He was so particular, as Mani says, about it.





So seriously particular. We had to put a wooden rail in front of the chair just to avoid any risk of touching it. In fact, the moment we entered Baba’s bedroom, we were more chair conscious than Baba conscious, because this was obedience, this was love. When we walked while we were serving meals or something—Baba had only a snack in the evening, a very light meal. It was served while Baba was sitting on the bed with a very small table placed in front of Him. That didn’t leave much room between the table and the chair, that He had placed in that particular location. That chair was not to be touched, and while we had to walk and pass each other, our skirts would flap like that and touch, and Baba said that never was that even to happen. So then we though of the bright idea of putting the wooden railing in front of the chair, which saved a lot of risk.

The yellow chair. There are two chairs, just for your information. The yellow chair is the seclusion chair where Baba sat and did the seclusion work. The other green one is the usual chair where the mandali who were with Him during the night in turns, used to sit.





To be even more particular, Baba made us mark on the floor round the chair so that the chair was not shifted at all. You will see the markings still there. I don’t know why Baba was so particular that we should not touch the chair. Maybe we might be burdened with His suffering if we touched the chair, and in His compassion, He wouldn’t allow even one of the mandali to touch it.





Yes, once somebody nearly touched it, missing it by an inch, and Baba said, very seriously, ‘You don’t know what you have missed by a little inch.’ After that the railing came.





I think I have sufficiently covered the announcements of the day, and now we will request our dear Francis to start his address to you—the Western lovers of Baba.

This is the same address that he read to group one, that came from the West Coast of the USA, and group two, that came from the East Coast of the USA. Now this is for the third time that Francis is reading the address, to the lovers from Australia, group three. And for group four, Francis has given me permission to read the same address, when Francis leaves for Australia with the group, or soon after the Australia group leaves. So this is the same address that was heard by all the lovers from different parts of the world.



Francis (addresses group):


                                              The Mighty Beloved


I am amazed and filled with joy to discover that the Beloved I have been serving for many years is truly a mighty Beloved.

Of course, I have known all along that he was God. But there are so many Gods. There is the God which people see in a shape of illusion such as a sunset or a mountain view or a symphony, or whose hand is seen in one’s not getting caught in a rainstorm or obtaining a good job: no doubt a very comfortable and profitable God to have—well worth a Christian candle or some Hindu incense—but not a God to whom one would offer one’s life. There is the God who rules the shining planes of consciousness: but sight of him would blind one. And the God who is beyond the planes is unknowable except by his own Grace. And he is extremely careful to whom he gives that Grace.

So when Beloved Baba used to tell us that he was God, I used to think, “Yes, Baba you are God alright—the One God and all the Gods—but what good is that to me?” In fact I used to get so fed-up with him being God that I wished he wasn’t. Or I wished he was a sort of Old-Testament God for whom I could slaughter some fat lambs or a spotless young bull in return for some added acreage. I got so tired of his being so much God that I wrote a song about it and sang it to him. It goes something like, “If only you were a bit less God, a bit more Man, I wouldn’t feel so much like someone upside down in a garbage can.”

But Baba wasn’t going to become more Man just for my sake, so I had to settle for him as the divine Beloved—one whom I could serve sometimes, instead of thinking about myself all the time. After all, although he is God, and sometimes is a Man, being one’s own and the world’s Beloved is his main job. Others can become as much God or as much Man as he, but only Baba is more beloved than any other beloved. And is infinitely worth serving.

But now a great problem arises. How to serve the One who is All-beloved, for whatever one does with love is done by him. And all that is done for the Beloved is done by the Beloved. And so one arrives at the painful conclusion that the Beloved alone exists—which means that oneself doesn’t. And that’s a terrible predicament to find oneself in—for one is still there!

The only solution I found was to accept the position: “You alone are and I am not, but we are both here.” And having arrived at this acceptance Baba now taught me a poetical form capable of expressing all the shades of the impossible relationships of lover and Beloved. Such a form has not existed in English up until now, because the lover- Beloved dilemma was not part of the British-American consciousness. And of course, beloved Baba being the author of this new form was (or seemed to be) delighted with my exercises in it.

And here is a delicious piece of humour in connection with this. There was a period when Baba had me read a new poem to him three times every morning. Do you know why three times? Baba was memorizing them. Why memorizing them? So that he could quote them next time he comes back in seven hundred years! That is really God-Man humour isn’t it? Then there were his extraordinary orders or commissions. His last was for thirty ghazals—ghazal is the name of the new poetical form he taught me. It happened this way. One morning after the usual morning business was finished; Baba said he wanted me to write thirty ghazals. Could I do that? I replied promptly and brightly, “No Baba.” This reply seemed to rather astonish him. He turned to the other mandali and said, “Well, what do you think of that? I ask this fellow to write thirty ghazals and he says, ‘No, Baba’.”  Then Baba turned questioningly back to me. I said, or rather groaned, “I don’t know whether I can write one ghazal—and you ask for thirty. I don’t think there are any more in my head.” Then he says sympathetically and persuasively, “Try and I will help you.” So it was back to the stone-quarry again to cut and build thirty more little poem-houses, each one a bit different; for the Beloved likes variety.

But still I did not know what a mighty Beloved our Beloved is. This knowledge has come to me only recently—since Baba laid aside his body.

Now, the Beloved would not be the Beloved if he didn’t have a thousand whims and moods, if he didn’t play his eternal game of divine pretence; if he was not all ears to the lover’s praise and stone-deaf to his complaints; if he was not All-knowledge and All-ignorance at the same time. He would not be the Beloved if he did not decorate the walls of his wine shop with pretty pictures such as “All the religions being drawn together as beads on one string” and “seven hundred years of peace;” and then invite the lover to cross deserts of heart-dryness and oceans of tears to receive the wine of his kiss; but when the lover at last staggers in at the door, the Beloved spends the whole time showing him the pictures and expecting his interest and admiration.

What a Beloved our Beloved is! What a Beloved we have chosen to serve! What is it to the thirst-crazed lover if a lot of glass beads are strung on one string? Will that make them turn into diamonds? What if there is seven hundred years of peace? Will not war again follow?

He would not be the Beloved if he did not tell the lover to stand up and sit down at the same moment; to become footless, and walk; to become headless, and think; to exert himself to the utmost, and leave everything to him.

Though it is not the time yet to know the wine of his kiss on our lips, we have received the kiss of his Word in our hearts. If it were not so, how could all you dear ones who have never seen his Man-form be here now?

Who but the Beloved of Beloveds, could speak his Word silently in your hearts and make you come from across the world to take his darshan, to bow down to him in your hearts? Such a thing has never happened before. I have been at mass-darshans where tens of thousands came and bowed down to his Man-form. But to come thousands of miles to bow down to him in one’s own heart, that is of an entirely different order of devotion.

Why has beloved Baba given you people this extraordinary privilege? Because he required a few to do what the many, what everyone, must eventually do: journey across the world of illusion to take darshan of him in their hearts. What a Beloved is our Beloved; what a mighty Beloved. This word that he has spoken in your hearts, which will be spoken in every heart in the world, will lead you by the hand, and drive you with whips to the door of your Beloved, to the wineshop of your Master—where it will become your own pure song of praise and will cause the beloved winemaster to open the door and bring you in and pour for you a glass of the wine of self-forgetfulness and Beloved-alone-remembrance. The very word with which he knocked on the doors of your hearts and aroused you to set your feet on the path to him, that same Word will knock on his door and make him open it to you—himself. I bow down to this mighty one in each of you.

But you also have your parts to play on this grand journey you have begun—you must not leave it all to your Beloved. For every step the lover takes to the Beloved, the Beloved takes ten to the lover. But the lover must continually take that one step. We must practice taking Beloved Baba’s darshan, bowing down to him in our hearts, every day, then every moment until we have continuous sight of him.

Happenings will happen—even Grand Happenings. But they will not be that Happening which has to happen in our hearts. So do not look to these other happenings to nourish your faith; depend only upon his Word and Its song in your hearts.

Be prepared for a long, long journey to have the Beloved’s real darshan. But it may only take a mere seven hundred years to reach His door and bow down to Him for the last time and merge in Him forever.



Eruch (addresses group in Guruprasad hall):


This hall, this is the place where Baba gave darshan in different years to thousands of people in small groups. This hall would be packed with people, Easterners; sometimes with a group of Westerners. Baba would remain seated in this chair, giving His love and blessing to all who came to Him. Sometimes permitting them to bow down to His feet. Sometimes allowing them just to stand there and fold their hands to Him. Sometimes He wouldn’t permit anybody to approach Him. ‘Just be seated,’ He would say. Then He would take the darshan of all His lovers Himself, saying that His having taken darshan of the lovers amounted to the lovers having taken darshan of the Beloved.

Every summer when He would be here, He would be giving darshan to small groups. When the group would be a bigger group—a crowd—then Baba would ask us to prepare the area outside. Just as He made us prepare the grounds for the East-West gathering in 1962, when about 5000 people at a time would be seated behind this room. In short, people would come to Baba just to remain seated and a look at Him from a distance or from close quarters.

We have gathered here today to have a look at Him, but in the words of Francis who has given us a better understanding, ‘to have a look at Him within our hearts.’ Baba has given us a great opportunity now to open the door of our heart, to have a peep at Him and find Him there. We thank Francis for having given us such a deep understanding of the darshan days that are to follow when group after group from the East and West will be gathering in this hall according to the terms laid down by Baba.

When Baba created that circular on 13th October 1968, those who were by His side did not know what He meant by giving darshan on His own terms. Maybe Baba inspired Francis to say, ‘to have His darshan in your hearts.’ We have the physical presence of His seat; we have the physical presence of everything that He used here. We have the physical presence of this very hall, surcharged with His love, and we have His physical presence in our hearts.

So we will try to take continuously His darshan in our hearts. And that darshan will begin at 10 o’clock by bowing down to Him here at this seat He used. After that I think it is better that we have His darshan in the very room where He worked; where He worked for us; where He suffered for us, and in that suffering He laid His body aside.


Eruch (addresses group about taking darshan in Baba’s bedroom):


His bedroom is a small place, a small room where He made us put a chair like this, and He ordered us not to touch the chair, not to shift the chair from that position. He made us mark the position of the chair before He sat for His work there. The markings are still there; the chair is still there; the room where He worked and rested is still there. It will be opened after you have taken darshan here.

Each of you can take Baba’s darshan there in that room, because now we are permitted to touch the chair, where He sat and worked and suffered for us. You all know from the circulars and the letters which have crossed the oceans that He worked there, and the only hint that He gave—the only physical and tangible hint that we can have of His work is that He had to hammer His thighs with His hand continuously for hours until His thighs became like stone, in order to keep the link between the gross and Reality. We don’t know what that work was, we don’t know how He must have suffered—but He did it because of love.


The *clock chimes*.


Eruch (Continues talking):


It’s 10 o’clock; it’s time for you to come to Baba. Each one of you come in your turn. Bow down to Him in your heart, in front of His seat where He used to give His darshan to the crowds. After you have had His darshan here, enter His room and have His darshan there. One by one you can come now. We request Mehera to begin the darshan for the whole group.


Mehera joins the group. Mehera takes darshan of Baba’s chair and sandals, followed by the group. People then move to Baba’s bedroom and take darshan there.

The group then mingled with the mandali, meeting different ones individually.


At 11 o’clock the group returns by bus to the hotel.


After lunch, Jal Irani (Baba’s brother) takes the group to Sassoon General Hospital, Babajan’s tree and shrine, Bund Gardens and Pumpkin House where people were able to see Baba’s room, things from His childhood, and the stone upon which He struck His head.


From 5.30 to 7.30pm the women return to Guruprasad to meet Mehera, Mani, and the women mandali.


Mani (Telling stories to the women):


Baba used to go to Upasni Maharaj, she [Baba’s mother] was very upset about it naturally and she had so many aspirations for her son. She always considered Baba her first born even though Jamshed was the first child. But she was very young then and when Jamshed was born, when he would be brought to her, mother would turn her face this way, and when the child was brought this side, she would turn her head the other way. So my aunt, my mother’s older sister, adopted the child, took care of the child, Jamshed, brought him up. He always called her "mother," and mother always said that Merwan was her first born, she loved him very much, she was going to send him to the West for education, she had so many aspirations for him. So when all this happened it upset her very much, it pained her very much, she was not going to take it lying down, with Upasni Maharaj taking away her son as it were.


So she used to go to Upasni Maharaj and they had a good tiff over it you see, and she would tell Maharaj, "But the world is full of murderers, and they have many sons, why couldn’t you find another boy for your work, to keep him with you? Why did you have to choose my son out of all the sons on earth? Why don’t you go and get yourself another one?"


And Baba was there, Merwan, he was still Merwan there, and Maharaj said, "I told him to go, he doesn’t go. See here, Merwan you go home with her, she has a nice girl for you to marry, you go along with her and do business and cheat and lie and do all those things they do out there and go, go have a fine time." And he told mother, "While you’re about it, find me a wife also, find a girl for me too. One for Merwan, one for me and I am your son too."


And mother said, "Rubbish, you are no son." But she always had great respect for him. They were always wrangling over Merwan and of course Merwan at that time would do whatever Maharaj told him, but after that Baba didn’t. But once when she was going on the train, she would not leave it like that. Upasni Maharaj would pacify her, they would fight then they would embrace, and all would be well and there would be promises and tears, but after a while when she found that Merwan was still keeping with him and going on there she would go back.


Once when she was going on the train, it was traditional to take a flower garland, after all he was a Perfect Master and she accepted him as a spiritual personality, she would take this garland, but in her mind she knew she was going to have to fight with him when she got back. So as the train was nearing the station where Upasni Maharaj was stationed, she opened the garland from the basket and held it in her hand. Before that her mind was saying all sorts of things about the old man, but when she got down there, she bowed down and put the garland around Upasni Maharaj. Maharaj said, "Fine, fine, wonderful garland of shoes."


And she said, "Shoes, these are flowers."


And he said, "How much did you abuse me while you had those flowers in your hand?"


And mother had to laugh and admit it; therefore she had great respect for Maharaj knowing that he knew. And it used to be the same with Babajan, she would send my granny—that’s her mother—sometimes to fight for her, to go and tell Babajan why was Merwan going there so often? He was neglecting home and he was late for supper, and he wouldn’t do this and that, and after all he was her son and Babajan should discourage Merwan from coming and being there so much.


So my granny would promise and she would go, and the two old ladies would sit there and chat and seeing each other she would forget everything. They would talk in Persian and sing songs, my granny would sing a song and poems in Persian back and forth you see. And she would forget in the end. And just as she was about to go, it was so late, she would suddenly do her duty and she would say, "Oh Babajan, I meant to ask you, my daughter wants to know why you're keeping her son here so much."


She smiles and says, "Tell her, He's not your son, He's for the whole world."


And she would come home and mother would say, "Did you tell her?"


And granny would say, "Oh yes, yes I told her lots you see." It completely melted down.


(New speaker)


Even mother herself twice went to Babajan and she said, "Tell me when he is going to come home. He is gone for so many days and I don’t know where he has gone."

And Babajan said, "Why do you worry? Why do you worry? "




Oh but mother used to say that to Baba when she used to come to Meherabad sometimes and she used to call him Merog just like my father did. It’s Irani for Merwan, Merog, just like Sheriar would be Sherog; I would be Manija, which was my real name. So she would say, "But Merog, you say you are God. At least what you really mean is that you're like God, or you've realized God, all right then you don't need to do all this. Why do you keep silence? Why don't you make these tiffs of girls and boys do that instead, it’s for them that you’re doing. Why do you fast, why don't you make them fast?"


And Baba would always smile. But once, which is very rare for Baba, He would never give such indications, once he said very lightly, even pointing at one of them, "Even if she kept silence all her life, it would not be equivalent to one day's silence of mine." And pointed to another, "Even if he kept fasting all his life, one day's fasting that I do would not be equivalent to that." And lightly just passed it off and then went on.


And the other day when there were men here I was talking about no matter how much Baba disguised Himself, disguised in the sense that He would have dark glasses on or scarves or things like that, we have noticed so often that people would turn round and look at Baba, even if they were in a hurry going on the station their necks would be turned right round to see till Baba was out of sight. They had a sort of puzzled look on their foreheads like they couldn't quite make it out but something had drawn them.


Even in the New Life when Baba had that robe on, Kafni, He and Eruch were right out and walking in the front and a little distance away was Mehera, myself, Dr Goher and Meheru, four of us, and we would see these people pass by and they would be chatting and arguing like they do in India, very loudly, and suddenly as Baba would stride by, He used to walk very fast, it was before any of those accidents, fast but not in a hurry, it would be fast when you saw the distance He had already crossed because He was here, and before you knew it, He just moved so swiftly, and  suddenly all that stopped and people would turn around and look at Baba until He had gone. Even though those kafnied ones before Baba had gone by before, there were no heads turned because it was natural to see someone in a long robe. But where it was Baba they would turn. And as I was saying, the mandali who were with Baba in the New Life, they wore these long kafnis because Baba told them to. I mean for us the Nothing was Everything because the Nothing was dictated or directed by Baba. That was the only significance it had. Kafni were nothing to the mandali, we were not Sanyasis or anything, but because Baba said to do it we did it, they did it, we didn’t have kafnis on.


But the funny part it was wintertime, is that it was very, very cold. Up in the north it was wintertime yes, and it was so cold be couldn’t button our clothes; I mean you just couldn’t get the button into the buttonhole. And so one day, when the mandali had to go out and beg for alms, go out and get the food, in that chatti that they had, they had to wear their kafnis, but that didn’t keep them from wearing their woollies. So they wore woolly over woolly inside you know, and a coat over it, whatever they had brought with them. By that time, if one was portly like Kaka was, and Dr. Nilkanth was, they were both hefty strong people, they wore their woollies and their coats over it and they looked very strong. They didn’t seem to need food, even if they begged for it. So when they would go out into these towns and villages, not villages mind you, I’m talking towns, and they would go out, it was their turn to go out, and the householders some of them would look at them and the more educated ones would say, "Good Lord, you look like wrestlers and you don’t look as if you are starving. Go out and earn, go out and work. Surely you can work but you are begging for."


But on the other hand when we were going through some small village and Baba and Eruch would be there first, and a little distance away we were there, and Baba. And at ten o'clock about or at half past nine, we would start at a very unearthly hour in the morning and the first things the mandali had to do, and we would see them by kerosene lamp when we got up, preparing the food for the other animals. And Baba was very meticulous about that, each animal had to be seen to very carefully so that they barely had time before starting with Baba, after seeing to Baba's things, all of us did, they barely had time to snatch a cup of very quickly made not so good cup of tea, sometimes even missing that to be on time to leave. So by nine o’clock we would be very hungry, very hungry for lunchtime as it were. We would walk mile after mile and then Eruch would say, "We're hungry now. Let’s go and ask for something." This would be bakri, the Indian bread made on the hands from millet so he would go detour just to some _____, Baba would not be there, He would still be on the road, and Eruch would go and go to some hut and ask for alms. And these villagers, if someone was there making bread on that skillet, we have an iron skillet on which that is cooked, and she would say, "Please wait, please wait, it will be ready right now." And she would give it piping hot, put that cordas that is vegetable, hot vegetable or chutney on it and, and give it. Or sometimes she’d say, "Please just wait, I haven't flour in the house but I will get it from my neighbour." And she would rush to her neighbours, get the flour, quickly make the bread that would be about 15-20 minutes, and give it like that. And it made me think how blessed are they really these poor and so-called uneducated who gave it without knowing, without thinking and it is a very old traditional custom among the Hindu race that whenever a Sadhu or a spiritual aspirant or somebody like that comes to your house, never deny him, for you never know who will one day come to your door. It may be Ram in exile.


How often we have seen in these times that the people who ask for alms are often scoundrels probably or people just making a profession of it, but some are sincere no doubt, some real. But without exception they have to know so that the time when the Avatar came to their door they gave it with such love. Baba would enjoy. He would give each of us little pieces with His hand, never has anything tasted more delicious. Maybe it was the cold, maybe it was sitting with Baba, maybe it was that we were hungry, maybe it was all the love that was put in by these poor women who gave it.


I always think that before the phase began where Baba told us to give His name to the people, the gift of His name. Just give freely, generously, whoever, wherever, just give it to them. Whether they can catch it or not, some might you see. Before that there was that period where we had to let absolutely nobody know who Baba was when He was with us. Now we were quite a large party during the bus tours that we made, the Blue Bus tours as we called it in 1938. And sometimes Elizabeth Patterson was driving, sometimes Dr. Donkin was driving or Eruch was driving, but during those times we would stop by at these small dak bungalows or guesthouses or hotels or lodging places just for the night and then we would rush away. But there we did not have any chance to call Baba "Baba" because someone might hear. During that time we had not to tell anyone who Baba was and not to say "Baba" because then somebody might guess. It was holding His name in before opening the gate and letting it out.


So during that time when we would get down to some hotel, Norina would call Baba, "Baboolie" so just to be sure, to be safe and endearingly. And Nadine, that’s Countess Tolstoy, she would call Baba in the Russian style "Babushka" and each one would do something. And I shall never forget this time when we were in Bangalore, we had gotten down for the evening and we were at this lodging place and the land lady and we were all sitting down to lunch and she was serving it, a nice plump homely landlady, we liked her very much, she came in and personally wanted to serve us. We were all us women sitting and Baba was at the head of the table and there was one girl who had come from Persia with her mother, that is Baidul's family. Baidul had just come and joined us in the ashram, and this girl was about ten. She had had Typhoid so she had cropped her hair so she looked like a boy.


Now Baba means to a father, to a mother you say "ba" just ba is mother, to a friend is "baba," brother is "baba," often a beggar on the street will say, "baba, please give me one paisa" or you ask directions from someone and say, "baba where is this road." So friend, brother, father, also a baby if it’s a boy is called baba. A mother will say to her governess, "take the boy walking," or something like that. So anyway, there we were at this table having our lunch and Baba was at the head of the table and the landlady comes waddling in with a plate and she said, "Baba, will you have a patty?" She was serving lentil patties you see, "Will you have a patty?" And the moment she said, "Baba" you should have seen everybody, it was as if we were all frozen. I still remember Elizabeth with her fork here, just at her mouth, everybody was just eating, somebody with a spoon here, it was as if a still fell. And then suddenly all together, everyone remembered that she was addressing the little girl who she thought was a boy and asking the boy if he wanted. And that relief, you could have heard that sigh around the table and everybody started eating again. So what I mean to say is this was just to illustrate, there were many incidents like that to illustrate how strictly we were not to mention Baba or to say who Baba was, and if anything like that happened it scared everybody out of their wits.


So when we were in Mysore that was in 1936 and for a time Baba and some of the mandali and some of the women, we were very few then, the Westerners had not joined us yet, and I had an ear operation, a mastoid operation, I was very ill then and had to be rushed to the hospital. There Baba used to come every day to the hospital, twice a day in the morning and in the afternoon He would come to see me. They would peel some fruits and put in my mouth when I had just begun to eat things like that. But the real thing is, what I really want to say I mean, is the nurses, it was a hospital run only by women. It was a missionary hospital, Western missionaries, I think they were English or Irish, I’m not sure, I think they were English, beautiful people. They had started this hospital and all the staff were women, including compounder and doctors and all the nurses were women so that only an old gardener wasn’t.


So all these little nurses the moment Baba came, after two or three days we realized that whenever Baba came they always had some excuse to come in and out of my room, in and out of my room. Naja was there with me, Naja was looking after me, she was there day and night, she was put in charge, she was in the ward with me and she thought it was very odd. We didn’t see these nurses at all at any other time. But when the time would come that Baba would be there, one nurse would come in to talk with the other nurse and it turned out that they all wanted to come in to see Baba. But you see we did say Baba then, we talked about Baba but not Meher Baba or who Baba was. And then they would say, "What, Baba has not come today?"


And we'd say, "No, He's not coming in the afternoons anymore, He's only coming once a day in the mornings."




So I'd say, "Why do you ask?"


And they'd say, "Oh we like so much when Baba is here. You know, the silent one."

So we just didn't bring up the subject because we didn't want to continue.


(New speaker interrupts)


They would ask, "Why doesn’t He speak?"


(Mani continues)


Yes, I said, "He is very shy."

And, "Why doesn’t He speak?" they would ask Naja and Naja would say....


(New speaker interrupts)


And one patient, she was very beautiful, and her bed was near the window, and when Baba would pass by she would say, "Please tell me who He is."


And I would say, "Brother of my patient."


And she would say, "He looks so nice and so kind, his eyes are so nice, but why doesn’t he speak?"


And I would say, "He is very shy."


She said, "I like him very much because whenever he comes I feel nice."

I said, "Yes, but how can I tell you?"


(Mani continues)


Yes, but it was not just an attraction without knowing. There was one nurse, the moment that Baba would sit by my bed on the chair, she would go and bring all the newborn babes one by one of that day without saying anything or without asking anything so Baba wouldn’t have to say anything. She would just put the child on Baba's lap, Baba would smile at it, take its little hands or do something, smile at it, pet it, caress it and she would carry it away. It was with pointedness she would put it down and pick up another one and bring. One day I remember there were about 20 newborns and Baba looked so.... and when she took one away Baba said to me, "Are there anymore?"


And I said, "Baba I don’t know if there are anymore." But every newborn she would come and place on Baba's lap, even though we never let on who Baba was. Because we could see both sides you see, here and there, it has been very touching.


I wanted to say something else first. You know how Baba did so many things when He did anything. Like the time when He throw stone at a tree, if there were twenty birds on it, it’s not just that one bird would fly away. Just that one stone thrown twenty birds fly away, all the birds fly away. Because we only see one side of it, when Baba had anything done we knew for each of us individually there was some morally shaking training, learning. It was also for, supposing if Baba went to the pictures with us, to each it meant something different. To the crowd that was out there, without their knowing, Baba did the work, what He had to do spiritually, whatever else He had to do it was different. So I remember how sometimes when Baba would take us to the pictures and Baba would be sitting there and sometimes, even if it was in a crowd, if our eyes were not always focused on the picture we happened to see Baba's finger moving very, very fast. But sometimes it used to be such a good picture, and we would be so engrossed in it, and really want to know what’s going to happen and what’s going to happen to the heroine and what’s going to happen to the hero, and then Baba would suddenly (clap), "Come on, let's go." And so we would all go, but each one would try to be the last one out of the door so we could try to see what’s on the screen.


And I still remember as we were leaving somebody said, "What's happening?" So I rushed back, opened the curtain, saw, and ran back. And yet, if it was a boring picture and you had so much to do at home, and you were thinking this was left and that, and you just sat there and yawned and Baba would sit right through, without moving. He would even watch the advertisements and all sorts of things, we just did not have to get up until it was done.


And once I remember, it was early in the morning Baba took us to the pictures. It was in Ahmednagar and Sarosh cinemas were there, so Sarosh would arrange a show at any time, and Baba had decided we would go to a show in the morning. We had to quickly get up and see to the cooking and do everything now so that there would be time, at breakfast time we would be going to the show. And we went there and the film was, Wake Up and Dream, and I wasn't well at the time, but still I felt certain with Baba and we would all enjoy ourselves. Now, it was the most boring, the most confusing, the most silly picture we had ever seen and we sat there in Wake up and Dream but we just couldn't wake up, we thought it was a nightmare.


Right through it we would sit see, and Rano told us that once when they were in France, in Marseilles and Baba took them to the pictures, Baba told Rano to explain everything to Him because it was in French. And so she had to tell. And she said that it was such a boring, such a hopeless picture that when she looked around Norina was nodding and Elizabeth was almost snoring and Nadine was half asleep, and every time when she stopped saying something Baba would give her a jab in the ribs "Come on, come on, what’s up next?" There was a very thin crowd and Baba suddenly decided, "Let’s go and see that picture."


It was the same with animals; Baba must have done work through animals, like the pets, the many, many pets that Baba had. But we would go to see the Zoo. I remember, whenever we travelled, one of the sights Baba always took us to was the Zoo. That’s about most of what we've seen in any place we've been to. We would not do any sightseeing the way other tourists would do, or any shopping. And it was not only a large party, but the hurry! The hurry, the running and the rushing so that literally we ran throughout the Zoo to see the animals. I still remember, Baba would be walking ahead very swiftly with someone, and suppose one of us women got interested in some bird or some python or something and it took half a minute, and we had to run to keep up. And I remember running and looking back and saying, "Katie, look to the right, a beautiful peacock!" and then running along, "Margaret, look to the left, there’s a lovely hippopotamus!" And with us, timing was at a sprint! And when we went to the Taj Mahal, we were forty of us, and every time we tried to look at something we were looking at each other! Nadine had an inspiration, she was looking up. And looking up of course we could see the expanse of that dome and she sang I think Baba's arti there, and we could still hear it. Baba was swiftly striding through; He was doing whatever He had to do. There was no lagging behind, just running behind.


Once when we were travelling and we were very hot and tired and we got down at last, we had been travelling through the dusty roads in the sun and the heat, so at last we saw haven you know. There was a cool veranda and a room and now we could just rest. It was quite late in the evening actually, when we say evening we mean 5 o'clock, 6 o'clock. Baba suddenly decided we would go to the movies. It was a place we hadn’t been to before, I forget, but we didn’t have our trunks with us, our clothes we had put in our bedding roll. Now the bedding rolls were wrapped in gunny sacks so they wouldn’t get dusty, and the gunny sacks were tied with tight ropes, so when Baba said, "Alright we'll go to the pictures." The thought of opening, we said, "Oh! Not to open those bedding rolls again!" But we had to get something to wear to the cinemas, so we did it groaning, moaning like those camels do. But once they were out and we had ironed them with a bit of water, it was all done then we were ready, we were happy. And we had our quick supper of bread and butter and things like that and we put on our clothes and the ____ was driving the car then.


Now there's a long history of that car, how we all got in that car is quite a story. The car would break down now and then, it wouldn’t start, and even Baba, we would all get down and push the car, once in the moonlight I remember. But that’s another story. Anyway, we were happy about going to the pictures, so we all got into the car, and Rano was behind. Rano, myself, and Mehera were in the back and Baba. As we were sitting in the car, the servants of the dak bungalow, they all came to the window. "Your all dressed up, are you going to the cinema?"


So from inside we said, "Yes, cinema, we are going to the cinema. Yes, very happy." And the car was starting, and there was not very much time left for the picture to start, but the car wouldn’t start. So Baba says, "Come on," you know, "Start." And the motor would go (vroom vroom vroom) stall. So the moment it stopped, we were going-- we didn't say Jai Baba back then-- we said, "We're going."


They said, "Oh yes!" They were so happy; they came over to the window-- stall. This went on and on for so long that the time for the pictures was over. Here we had gone to so much trouble, opening our bedding and putting on our clothes, instead of resting we had done all that. We were sitting in this small car, all cramped with someplace to go but the car wouldn’t move.


And the time was up for the picture, so we all said, "Doesn’t matter, there might be advertisements in the first part of the film. It doesn’t matter if we miss that part." But it went on and on and half the film must have gone on because at that point Baba said, "Get out. No we won’t go."


So they're still waiting to wave us goodbye, but we said, "No, we're not going, it’s all right." And what do you think? The car door wouldn’t open. We just couldn’t get out. We were hot and perspiring and by that time we were making faces at them saying, "Pull, pull the door from outside!" And they couldn’t understand, and we said, "We can't get down!" And they couldn’t hear us. Rano, she got so desperate, she is tall and has long legs, she got back and kicked and kicked! And when the door opened we just tumbled out, almost fell out, and the servants and the garden boy they just looked so surprised, they couldn’t figure out what had happened. We never did make them understand. We went in and just threw our clothes off and changed and went to bed. So we'd gone to the pictures you see. Neither had we had this, nor had we’s like the story of the monkey, no bite, no realization. No rest, no pictures.


This is the story of one man, Mr. Jeffrey who lives in Karachi; he is the musical director of Radio Pakistan. And he has never met Baba but somehow or another he got interested and always when we had our birthday or silence anniversary celebration he helps us. So this January when Baba, the day Baba dropped His body, 31st January that night after Baba had dropped His body that night He had a dream and in the dream he said that he saw Baba sitting on the chair of his veranda and he said when he saw Baba sitting there he was so happy and he said "Oh Baba, you have come to my house! To my humble house!"


So I said, "Stop, stop Mr. Jeffrey, you have never met Baba so how do you know it was Baba?"

And he said, "Oh what are you talking? I have seen Baba's photo in your house, I have seen Baba's photo when we have the celebration, I definitely know it was Baba. So when I said to Him that, 'Baba you have come to my house?' Baba spoke to me in pure Urdu and He said, 'Yes, I have come to your house.' So then I said of course in Urdu only, 'But Baba, you were in India just yesterday, how is it today that you are in Pakistan?' And Baba answered that, 'Yes, yesterday I was in India, but today I have spread myself all over the world.'" Of course he didn’t know at that time that Baba had dropped the body and it was two or three days later that we telephoned and told him the news and he said the minute the telephone bell rang and he knew we were calling him on the phone, he felt something within, something within him that here some bad news was going to be given to him. That is all.



When _____ a Baba lover in _____, that’s near Calcutta, when he came to Meherazad sometime after Baba dropped His body he told us of the dream he had on the 31st. He works on the railway there, a very high post on the railway. He comes home late at night so in the morning when he has to go back he is rather drowsy and very reluctant to start the day, so his wife shook him up and said, "Come on, its time for your tiffin of breakfast." And this tiffin he takes with him for lunch.


So he was sitting there at his dining place and his wife was in the next room preparing the tiffin for him and while he was waiting for it he said, "I must have nodded." Sitting like that, just sitting like that, he had a minute’s dream and he saw that it was Meherazad and Baba was there but much bigger and taller than he has seen Baba physically. And Baba was running very, very fast out of Meherazad, out of the gate of Meherazad and we women and men mandali were running after him but we were very small. Our heads were normal size, but other than that we were like little dolls. And we were running as fast after him trying to get hold of some part of Baba, the sadra or the hand or the finger, to stop him from going and ___ said, "Don’t do that, don’t do that, don’t stop him! Its all right, He'll come back, He'll come back!"


And he said it aloud and his wife came out and said, "What are you talking about?"


And he said, "That’s all right, it was just a dream." He didn’t know then Baba had dropped His body.


So when he came he said that and so I said to Mehera, "Baba did not tell us, but He tells us through so many ways, through so many Baba lovers from so many places that He is here. He’ll come back. In some way He will always be there, He will give the indication." That’s what I asked Him when I was playing Begin the Beguine in the crypt near him, when I was alone I said "Baba you will give an indication of what you want us to do, of how you want us to do everything, of what you want us to do." Of course it must have been my imagination but I felt I saw Baba nod, just like that, it was after that I did not imagine that. But the others said they saw Baba open His eyes just for a second. I can quite believe that because for the first four days it was not as if Baba's eyes were closed, it was rather as if Baba had just shut his eyes. As if someone said, "Now shut your eyes" and you do that. He had shut the eyes, not closed, as in sleep, so many felt they saw Him blinking or just opening them once like that. The Begin the Beguine that I played at that time in the tomb is the one I recorded but it is a very old record, it was sent by Fred Marks from England once, it's sung by Hutch Hutchinson. Alain Youell tells me that Hutch is still living there; he may be able to get me that record, a good one, if so I will make a good tape of it and send it around. That is a beautiful one; we can play it if you like.


              (Meheru asks Mani to tell a story)


Meheru honestly I don’t know the story so well. I have not heard it with as much attention as I should have. I have heard the story surely, but not really heard it.


When Baba used to join in games it was such fun. Gilli is a little piece of stick that is sharpened on both ends like a pencil, or like a moustache, a waxed moustache, and a gander is a stick that is up to here, a round stick. And you make a hole, a hollow in the ground, and you place that little gilli across it and put that stick in it danda, and then throw it, because that gives it a lever. And there is a space underneath and you have to see how far it goes, there are only two sides, and the further you can the better, and when it’s gone there the little stick, the gilli? is resting on the ground but because of the points it is raised from the ground on the ends so that then you have to strike that one end with another stick because when you strike it then it bounced right up. Once its in the air, in that split second you have to strike it as hard as you can, if you miss it that’s fine but if you strike it, the further it goes the better, because from there, to the little hole in the ground you have to count, you have to count but you have to measure with that stick. The counting and the measuring is in the Indian language. Gilli Danda that game. Baba used to measure that so beautifully, so swiftly, we would be on either side of Him you know, "Is He doing it too fast for us to count? Is He cheating?"


You know the other party, there would be the party on Baba's side and the party opposite naturally and then the parties would be quarrelling, "No He didn’t! Yes He did! No He didn’t! Yes He did!"


And Baba would end the game, throw away the...and say "Let’s go."


Then there would be the seven tiles, the seven tiles you have to pile on top of each other, bits of tiles, Indian stones, set on top of each other, then you have to go some distance away and throw and ordinary tennis ball at it and you must aim to break it. There again there are two sides, and the other side catch it. If they catch it your out, but if you knock over the more stones the better. The other party has to come up and quickly replace those stones so that once it’s back in place they won. Baba's aim was so accurate, He had the most wonderful aim, its no surprise that. We still have the ball we used to play it with.


Now Meheru, this is Mehera's sister's daughter. Meheru, she has also been with us for these years, I mentioned her when I was talking about the New Life when we were walking, she was one of the four who was in the New Life.


Mehera wants me to tell it, Korshed has told it because she actually met the person and talked to him. It’s the story of a _____. A ____ in India is one who goes around singing Kirtans singing songs of any saints or Sadguru and they give anecdotes, any story applied to him and the sing Bhajans, interspersed they sing Bhajans you see. They are professionals, minstrels or storytellers. It is usually the Kirtan singers, the one they believe in is ______ who they have a great pilgrimage in Maharashtra to Pandharpur where he is worshipped. Thousands go to Pandharpur for the ____; it’s like a ______ as you might say.


So this ______ has a friend who believes in Baba, and this ____ felt so strongly that why should his friend worship someone who does not belong to Hindu religion? Why should he go out of his way to worship a Zoroastrian God when we have so many Gods of our own? And so he would have heated discussions with him, and the other one couldn’t answer him so well because he wasn’t such a good speaker, so in the end the person got around to wearing him down and he said, "Now look, if I lose the discussion I will worship Meher Baba, if you lose the discussion you must believe in ____ and the photo of Baba you keep in your house will be removed from there." That is the agreement they got to in the end. And his friend had to agree in the end because he just pestered him and wouldn’t leave him alone.


The friend is living in Poona and the ____'s name is _____. So in the end his friend lost the argument after much, he just wasn’t up to it. It was an intellectual discussion you see, he was giving instances of why you should believe in _____ and why he shouldn’t believe in Baba and the friend wasn’t sort of good enough in arguing to be able to win the argument. So he said, "You have lost. Now Baba's photo must be taken out of your house and you must worship ____ and not Baba."


Mehera has reminded me of something very delightful to read out. In the last group you will see, and you will see at Meherabad and Meherazad two boys, young men, who we call the Luck brothers because they are Irwin Luck and Edward Luck. They are now at Meherabad because they could stay in Poona only one week. So Meherabad and other places they had come for sightseeing as it were, so they want to spend as much time here as possible, they are biding their time at Meherabad and also helping there at Baba’s tomb and receiving the Western family whenever they visit there. And these are from the strips of paper what used to come in chocolates and things they would send for Baba, and Baba would at least taste some of it because it was sent with love and each package of the chocolate a little slip would come out and it was read to Baba and Mehera had kept them and she asked me to read them out for fun and for love.

One said: “Love to the Silent One, Love to the Eternal One,”

This just says, “The Perfect One,”

Then, “My mind and heart suffer when your love is always with me and I am unable to know it.” This is another one, “I don’t know who I am, but if you are in the mood I am open for any suggestions my Lord.” 

“Baba, you are the Love of my lives.” 

“I bow down to you Baba.”

“Even better than perfection is your lovely Reality.”

“You are everything I could ever wish to be.”

This is very old-fashioned, “I love you.”

“I would love to dine with one sip of your wine.”

“Love me more and more till there is no ego left to be sought.”

“With you by my side, I can’t lose.”

“You make me happy.”

“You are the beautiful bird of paradise come to my doorstep. Holding your magical daaman, I fly away to my Lord’s place, with your grace.”

“My only thought is to please you.”

“Oh love, take me so that I may go so you can come.”

“I never thought of becoming God till I met you, now I cant think of anything else but serving you.” “I am you and you are me.” That’s in quotes and then Irwin says, “If you figure this out I will be most happy.”

“I treasure your love.”

“With being on your side, I have Everything because all else is nothing.”

“The more your love burns me away, the more I desire to come closer into the sweet flame of your love.”

“Your mercy is so tender and knowing beyond all description, your love makes my heart sing.”

“This was in a box of wheat flakes, “Each wheat flake is a flake of my drop love for you. I hope it satisfies the hunger of your heart.”












Friday 16th May


The group arrives at Guruprasad by bus and the clock chimes 9 o’clock AM:


Eruch welcomes the group for their second day of Meher Baba’s darshan.


The following skit is performed by Bill and Michael Le Page, Roy Hayes, and George McGahey:





A Horse and a Rabbit who were in the habit

of talk over cups of tea,

Discussed and decided they had too long resided

in the midst of the great, teeming city.


Said Rabbit, “The confusion on peace is intrusion.”

Said, Horse, “Yes, that is the great pity.

The only conclusion is that the world is illusion:

together let us to God journey.”


They prepared for the way, then the Rabbit did say,

“Though as friends we will travel together,

It is best that I lead—we will then make speed

and successful will be our endeavour.”


The Horse gave a cough that was just enough

to cover and smother his laughter.

They started away and travelled all day—

Rabbit leading and Horse trotting after.


And thus all the day they travelled that way

and camped that night under the stars,

Some way from the road so that they should

not be run over by cars.


The starts were so bright, it was a delight

to be sleeping out in the open.

And when the day broke they straightaway awoke,

stretched, and ahead the Rabbit went lopin’.


Alopin’ along with a chatter and song,

and behind him the horse clop-clop-clopped—

Till they came to a creek ten feet wide and two deep

and the Rabbit abruptly stopped.


He became quite pale and bobbled his tail—

oh, it was a sad sight to see.

His nostrils quivered, his body shivered,

and he became also weak in one knee.


Said the Horse, “O Rabbit! It is not your habit

to suddenly stop on the way;

You’re always so sprightly and chatter so brightly

what’s causing you now such dismay?


“How pale you’ve become, and so strangely dumb—

Great Leader who needs no counsel!

Oh, why at this hour have you lost your power

and are rooted like a bit of groundsel.”


“Oh, me-- this great flood—it freezes my blood—

it must be some uncharted river.

It’s as wide as a lake—why this way did I take?

The like of it have seen never.”


“O leader!” said Horse, “let’s not stop on our course

and be dismayed by a mere creek.

Some way you must find, while I follow behind

till we reach the Goal that we seek.”


“O Horse, dear Companion, it’s surely a canyon—

so wide and deep—it’s no mere river.

You are mighty and strong, oh, please take me along

on your back and I’ll boast again never.”


“Hop up,” said the Horse, “and feel no remorse,

but take this good lesson to heart:

Do not others deceive, but obey and believe

till God gives you the Leader’s part.”


Felix tells a joke.


Maree, Jenny and Joy sing the following songs:




The moon pales as she sails on her journey nightly,

The dawn breaks, Eileen wakes, the sun rises brightly;

And her soul to her heart begins a sweet singing:

Today is the day which my darling is bringing.


Meher the most fair, of all Fair the Fairest,

The perfume, the soft Bloom of all singing rarest

Has promised this day that Himself will be pacing

The petal-strewn path to our house to be gracing.


Then she rose and quick chose the best of her dresses,

Spent not long, with soft song, in combing her tresses.

He came to the gate, and she flew to Him crying;

And the flowers inhaled the breath of her sighing.


He held her and told her the one ancient story

That ever as a river reflects its first glory.

Amidst the bright flowers she left her cares sleeping.

I wonder why it is that I now am weeping?





Somewhere within the dark

are the seeds of singing.

Sleep, little Krishna, sleep—

We cannot yet endure your Song.


Somewhere within the waters

are the buds of speech.

Sleep, little Jesus, sleep—

We are not yet ready to hear your Word.


Somewhere within the pain

is our new beginning.

Sleep, little Meher, sleep—

We are not prepared yet for our own Glory.





Alone I left my house one night

And took the road to Journey’s End.

And well I knew I would meet One

Who would be my true and trusty Friend.

My true and trusty Friend.


And soon I met Him on the road

When I had gone a little way;

And oh, I felt so very glad

That I could only laugh and say,

Meher Baba, my true Friend.


He said to me, “Where are you going?”

I said, “To search for and find you.”

He said, “Nowhere may I be found

But in your own heart trusty true.”

Said Meher Baba, my true Friend.


He smiled: the clouds were swept away

And all the stars, too, disappeared:

For His smile was the morning Sun

Which lit the world and all things cheered.

Meher Baba my true Friend.


It turned the dark night into day—

A lovely day in early June;

It turned my heart into a spring

That bubbles forth in a wild tune,

Meher Baba, my true Friend.


He said to me, “Now I must go,

But mark my words, I’ll never leave

You now that once we have so met

And you must never, never grieve

for Meher Baba, your true Friend.


“But turn your gaze within your heart

And keep it trusty, pure and true,

And you will find we’re not apart,

But that I really live in you.”

Said Meher Baba, my true Friend.


How true this is I can affirm—

He is my true and trusty Friend:

And so all day I sing His Name

And care nought now for Journey’s End.

But just for Meher Baba, my true Friend.


(“Meher Baba Is God Man” is sung)




I know where I’m going,

And you may come along too

If your heart is knowing

Much, much more than you do.


If you will never regret

And remain staunch and true,

If you will keep the secret

Of what your heart tells you.


We will ride a goat

That’s faster than an airplane

To ends of earth remote—

Yet where we are remain.


We’ll see streams in deserts flowing

For many and many a mile,

And lovely flowers in dust growing

Because of Someone’s smile.


The journey is a long one—

From here to the most distant star:

And it’s finished right now—

For love is where you are.


You don’t have to go any further

To find your heart’s bright cheer—

For love is Meher Baba,

And He’s not There but Here.


And oh, He is so bonny,

And oh, He is so fine:

Who loves Him not is a ninny,

And though he has eyes is blind.


He is very bonny,

So winsome—that one sigh

Of mine for Him has broken

My heart: oh, I would die.



Francis (reads ghazals from his new, unpublished book “In Dust I Sing”):


Love loves not those whom love fattens, but makes destitute.

From the orchard’s winter ruin burgeons the summer fruit.


If you are desiring well-being it is not your time

For the twists and graces of inconsequential rhyme.


One cannot become one with the beloved (whomsoever)

Until one has severed oneself from selfness for ever.


The great lovers have always ardently pursued death:

First they surrendered their hearts, then their minds, then their breath.


Like the deer and the dog they followed the scent afar;

In the darkest night they gave birth to the brightest star.


Give up hope foolish heart, ‘there’s no death worse than expectancy’;

Love for love’s sake alone, and you have solved every mystery.


The path is a looped rope with both ends in the same place:

One end was God’s desire, the other is the Master’s grace.





Though fate a thousand times makes you a pawn in its game—do not give up:

Cling like a child to the skirt of your Beloved’s name.


Though the wave rises before you awful as a mountain—do not give up:

It’s but a ripple on the pond of the Knowledge-Bliss fountain.


Though fortune fair as a fickle goddess smiles on you—do not give up:

Behind their smiles is the Ever-loving, the True.


Though earth be crushed under the hammers of the sun—do not give up:

When the wreck is swept away, before you will be the Beloved’s form.


Though your Beloved may look at you askance—do not give up:

One day will come the invitation to the dance.


Think of the men who went before, those who will come after—do not give up:

Earth, millions of times—our troubles a matter for huge laughter.


The end of every affair was in its beginning—do not give up:

The conclusion of your journey is in your singing.






You warned us that on this path was nothing but pain,

And we glibly assented, but now we complain.


We were assenting to what was our idea of pain—

Tangible enemies to be suffered for love’s gain.


Something heroic we had in mind—battle’s strain,

Great oaths and wild blood caught in a drunken refrain.


You told us to leave the matter in your hands—remain

Resigned to your will and whim. You made that quite plain.


What irks is the very ordinariness of that pain—

Not even our names on an honour-roll of the slain.


You told us that the only traffic in Lovers’ Lane

Was when the wind blew—and one had become a dust grain.


Beloved, another dawn sky bears draught’s red stain.

Forgive us if sometimes hot stone cries for cool rain.





To love is something other than what the word-mongers say.

Their words are cries of pigeons as the guns blaze away.


At one time it’s the bottle, the book, the girl and the grove,

Or an orchestral setting of palm trees and sandy cove.


Another time they favour forests of chimney-stacks—

But concrete is hard on knees, and harder on backs.


Or they project the swashbuckling hero in high adventures.

They don’t want forty years of being bound by indentures.


The cold fact is that the love game is absolutely no-go—

Whether with girl or God one is a donkey at a horse show.


Whatever, fight shy of all love pretenders. A thug

Is a safer companion—with him there’s no humbug.


To love is something other than what the poet-merchants say.

Their words are rotten fruit shamelessly top-dressed for display.



Adi K. Irani (recites ghazals in Urdu and gives the English translations):


That this love, the love of this path, is so difficult that it is like taking a jump into the ocean of fire and swimming through it. Now imagine the ocean of fire and for a man to jump into that ocean of fire and swim through. This is not an easy route he says. And another man says that it is all everything alone, and both are equally true. As Baba says, it is as simple as it is difficult, and of course Baba, by His grace makes things very easy and all the difficulties are solved by His graces.


(Indian instrumental music and singing)


I do not want to see anything of the world at all; Jaam-e Jam is a thing in which you see a reflection of the whole universe. I do not want that. I am not a seeker after something in which the entire image of the world or universe is reflected. I do not enjoy that at all, I am not interested in it. I have come to seek the heart of the Beloved, I want the Beloved, and I want that sight by which I can see the Reality of the Beloved. I want to have the sight by which I can reach, I can see and reach the house of the Beloved, the heart of the Beloved.


(Indian instrumental music and singing)



The poet says:

Both of us are the seekers but there is a world of difference between your search and my search. There is a big question in world between your search and my search. I am searching the feet of the Beloved, the tangible feet of the Beloved, and you are seeking, you are going after, the footprints of the Beloved, footprints of anything. So the difference is that my search is after Reality and your search is after illusion.  There is a difference of the reality and the illusion between your search and my search. My search is for the feet of the Beloved, while your search is after the footprints.


(Indian instrumental music and singing)


Adi K. Irani gives talk:


In suffering is found the joy of life and in joy of suffering is found the bliss of existence. If after Meher Baba dropped His body we feel that our lives are meaningless, such as meaning should not be there, because it would mean that the meaning of our lives given to us by Baba during His lifetime have no meaning. Therefore, our feeling of emptiness and hollow after Baba dropped His body should be groundless and illogical. With body, Baba was the life of Meher Baba Himself, and existence as the Avatar in all. Without body, His existence as Meher Baba in Himself and life as the Avatar in all. Avatar Meher Baba has not gone; He ever is and will ever be. He has only changed His position from an individual life and a universal existence to an infinite existence and a universal life.

In His present status, He should be more in your hearts and feelings separated as we are from the vision of His body which He has dropped. He should therefore be closer to us than ever. In His closeness to us lies our great opportunity of making Him our own through love for Him and His unseen presence in our lives.

 Baba said, "Believe that I am the Ancient One, do not doubt for a moment. There is no possibility of my being anyone else. I am not this body that you see; it is only a coat I put on when I visit you. I have infinite consciousness.” Grieve not for the lamp that burned with life’s bright colour’s splendour has gone, because the light that lighted the lamp is ever aflame, everywhere in its effulgence.

Seek we Meher Baba as light in our hearts and He will never fail to cheer and brighten up the dark recesses of doubt and despair. Avatar Meher Baba, during His lifetime, drafted our doubts and laid a siege to the passions and perversities of our desires. If the desires are not completely gone, the wind from their sails was removed even in that God-Realization was proclaimed and placated to create a thirst for desirelessness.

To a person who once asked, "Where is God?"

Baba replied, "He is beyond hopes."

This hope means for anything and everything, including God-Realization. We loved Him so, Baba during His lifetime. He awakened us to keep a firm hold on His daaman. In fact, it was He who had held us to His daaman and I always wondered why He tried to get us to be aware that His daaman should not slip out of our hand. It was His way to keep us alert and active. It was His way to prepare us for the grave event of dropping His body. It is our turn to hold on to His daaman now and forever. It was easier to hold on to His daaman when He was in body, because He held us to His daaman. By repeatedly reminding us, He made it easier for us to hold on to His daaman when He is not in body. It was to His divine presence we got attached when He was in body; it is to the presence of His divinity we should become firmly attached after He has dropped His body.

 Divine and divinity are the two aspects of Avatar Meher Baba, when one is manifest, the other is unmanifest. When in body, Meher Baba as the Divine was manifest, and as Divinity was unmanifest. Without body, Meher Baba as the Divine is unmanifest and as Divinity is manifest. So, Meher Baba has not gone, He has turned His Divine face away from us to give us the experience of His Divinity.

As a father of whose presence we delight every type of everything, He has awakened us to the consciousness of His Divinity on which we have to rely every time for everything. Divine and the Divinity are as close to each other as pure water and the colours it assumes of the attributes that are His Divinity. When water gets coloured, the water does not cease to exist.

 So if Baba is gone from our seeming existence, He has come more forward light, which is full of colours. After the chequered colours of our sanskaras, or impressions we work to purify ourselves to become conscious of our pure existence which is nothing but the existence of the Avatar as Meher. He is ever with us and in us.

Seek we Baba as Avatar Meher Baba in our hearts, and he is ever there to guide us, to protect us and to purify us from the ever-changing lights of illusion and to enlighten us with the ever-unchanging knowledge and bliss of existence. Jai Meher Baba, ever the Avatar.



Mani (reads letters from young Baba Lovers):


Jai Baba. After Adi's talk I think this is the right time to read out a little letter that was received from a Baba Lover, a young girl in the USA who wanted very much to come to Baba since some years.

Her name is Mimi Drake, I think her letter is published in Divya Vani and you may have read it. She wanted very much to come to Baba, but Baba said, "Wait." And Baba has always said, "Those who wait for me never wait in vain."

And she could not come the first time because her mother objected to her coming and she was under-age. The next time, when she could come, Baba said, "Now is not the time, come when I call." So she never got time to see Baba physically because to her obedience was greater than love which was as Baba said it should be. I want to read out the letter for those who have not read it, then there is another letter which I will read after that from a girl, a fourteen year old girl. She was in the first group to come to Guruprasad for Darshan. A fourteen year old girl from the West Coast of the USA who was here for the first week of Darshan, her name is Rebecca Parry. I'll read out her letter which is in the form of a poem after I read out Mimi Drake's.

Mimi wrote:


'Dearest Mehera and Mani,

Love in the Ancient One, the only One who lives. When I first heard that Baba dropped His body I felt lost, thinking that I came on Earth to see the Ancient One (God) and missed seeing Him. But what I really came on Earth for is to love Him, and now more than ever, the New Life Baba lives seems endless and eternal. Now is the chance to love Baba for nothing, only for what He is. I only want to hold on to His daaman till the very end.'


That is the letter from Mimi.

This is the letter from fourteen year old Rebecca Parry.


She says, 'I am only fourteen years old and have never actually been in Baba's physical presence, so I’d like to see Him as much as possible. I’m sure all of us in America were as deeply moved by the darshan as I was. Baba was so present and I felt as if I had seen Him for the first time. Also, after going to the tomb, I knew without a doubt that Baba is God and it made me cry tears of sorrow and repentance, but also of boundless joy and new dedication. Back at our hotel I wrote this poem which tries to express my thankfulness at His grace which felt so clearly through everyone at Guruprasad. It is called "Today."


Have you seen Him? Have you ever seen Him? they asked.

And before I would have said, No, and my heart would sigh,

but today when they ask my very being cries,

Yes, yes, I have seen Him in the blossoming trees,

and Yes, I see Him in the wave from the sea,

and I have seen Him in our heart’s abode,

also tramping down His long hot road.

I have seen His eyes consume each in a room,

And just today I have seen His Highness in His tomb,

resting and waiting so patiently.


Have you heard Him? Have you ever heard Him? they asked.

And before I would have said, No, and my eyes would swim in tears.

But today when they asked, my very soul asserts,

Yes, yes, I have heard Him chuckling in the breeze,

and yes, I have heard His heartbeat as I bowed on bended knees.

And I’ve heard Him crying.

Oh I’ve heard Him sighing.

But today, I’ve heard His sweet voice through the birds,

and today, I prepare my heart for His word of words,

For He is Avatar.


Have you felt Him? Have you ever felt Him? they asked.

Yesterday, I would have said, No, and the heartache would grow,

but today when they ask, my whole existence cries out,

Yes, yes, I have felt His sunshine beams,

and yes, I have felt Him in a dream.

And I have felt His perfect Grace

which abides in His shining face.

And today He has given me a love drop from His eye

that my heart lays down its load, Avatar Meher Baba Ki Jai,

And I give thanks to Him.


Have you touched Him? Have you ever touched Him? they asked.

And before I would have said, No, even though it hurt me so.

But today when they asked my heart's love eyes say

Yes, yes, I have touched the outer circle of His love,

and yes, I have touched His moonbeam dangling from above.

And I have wept at His shining feet,

and laid my heart on His heavenly seat.

Today, He has given us heart which sets my soul afire,

may it burn up my selfness and leave me no desire,

other than for He.


Have you loved Him? Have you ever loved Him? they asked.

And yesterday I would have said, No,

though my very breath ceased to flow.

But today when they asked, the bit of Baba in my heart says,

Yes, yes, I love Meher like the blossom loves the tree,

and yes, I love Baba like the droplet loves the sea.

And I love Him in my heart that we may never be apart.

No, I do not love my Master as I should,

but with a touch of His Grace, perhaps I could

for He is God.


Then she says,


Dear Mani and all other lovers of God at Guruprasad,


Thank you so much for being such well-tuned instruments for Baba's Divine Music which has touched my heart. I know that our Master is truly the dawn, the sun, the only One.

Love in Baba,

         Rebecca Perry.



The group takes Meher Baba’s Darshan in the main hall and in His bedroom. They talked with the mandali members individually and heard some recollections of their lives with Baba


At 11 o’clock the bus returns the group to the hotel.






Saturday 17th May


The group arrives at Guruprasad by bus. The clock chimes 9 o’clock AM and

Eruch welcomes the group.


Eruch (address group):


We will sing the Australian Arti of Baba, before we sing I will read out the words. Of course, this arti was written down by Francis, the East West Gathering:


O glorious, eternal Ancient One your face is a bright, transcendental sun - lighten this dark world and the tears I weep; my heart, Meher, I give to you to keep.


Creator, yet creationless you are - truth and Truth's Body, divine Avatar who, through compassion the three worlds maintains - destroy this ignorance that life sustains.


These five lights are the whirling spokes of breath of the world-wheel that bears me on to death unless you, who are infinitely kind, break the wheel's hub which is conditioned mind.


This incense is my love, these fruits my art which to please you I have shaped from my heart; accept them as you would a simple flower that has no use beyond its shining hour.


You are my Self. I sing to you in praise and beg your love to bear me through the days till you, the ever living Perfect One, illume my darkness with your shining sun.


These are the words of the Arti composed by Francis, and we will now ask Maree, Joy, and Jenny to sing to us the Arti.


(Arti is sung)


(Maree, Ruth and Jenny sing two songs)


(Leigh and Steven sing “Sea Yarn”):




We have spent time collecting bones

Of what Man used to be;

We used time in sorting stones

To further geology.


In the same time, or less, we could have collected our tears

And rolled them into a mighty flood

And drowned all our fears.


We have spent time discussing the purpose

As to what Man should be;

And dreamed and schemed what would serve us

Toward greater prosperity.


In the same time, or less, we might

Have won to Love’s high seat,

And attained our souls’ true delight

As dust at Meher’s feet.


Meher Baba the Christ God-Man

Who’s come down from on High,

And thrown for us a Rainbow Span

From little I to I.


It takes just as much time to weep

As it takes one to sing

And praise Him-of-the-fathomless-Deep

Who our real welfare brings.


 (Robert Buchanan tells jokes)


(Carrie Ben Shammai dances)


11 o’clock the group returns to the hotel.


5:00PM to 7:00PM the Australian men visit Guruprasad to have their individual time with the men mandali.


The men are welcomed by the men mandali and taken to a room on the men’s side of Guruprasad.


Eruch (addresses the men):


This is where the mandali used to sit with Baba and Baba would come here every day in the morning and in the afternoon and spend His time with the mandali. This is the hall also where stray visitors would be permitted to visit Baba and sometimes have His darshan and so forth. Mandali would be sitting like that as you are sitting and correspondence would be read here, doors would be closed.


Francis (comments):


Baba was in seclusion you see, anyone coming around, He was not to be seen by anyone.


Eruch (continues):


And He would permit us to read some correspondence, stations and reports from the West and the East, group reports. There was a standing order also from Baba to me, and to Francis to read certain reports, especially reports from Rick, Allan, from USA, and reports from…where is Bill? Oh here, reports from Bill about the work in Australia, and as soon as Francis just brings out that cover, that long envelope, that famous envelope from Bill, you could find out from handwriting and naturally when Francis puts it it must be from Bill otherwise there was a restriction on correspondence and Baba would say, “Any letter from Billy Boy? Baba’s Billy?”

And Francis said, “Yes,” and Baba would just get into mood to hear the letter and report and feel happy about it and give instructions and so forth.

This is the room where many things were executed under Baba’s instructions. Last year, especially when He would be sitting in that room there, or most of the hours in His bedroom that you have visited on the chair, after He had completed His work He would come here and just stand here and join with us in recitation of the Master’s Prayer. And He would ask us to recite the prayer and He would stand with folded hands as one of us. And one day He was in the mood to tell us that His joining us…(unknown)


Eruch tells stories to the men


Eruch (tells story about an Old Man):


Sometime before Meher Baba began giving darshan to the public, he travelled all over India incognito, especially when he had to do his work. His personality was so attractive, so magnificent, that even when he was in a large crowd people would stop to gaze at him as he passed by, without even knowing why they were doing so. They would just be drawn by his presence—pick him out of a crowd and gaze at him.

However, because he wished to remain unrecognised he would disguise himself by covering his face with scarves or by wearing dark glasses. Also, he would dress to suit the conditions of the place where he was visiting even to wearing a turban, a felt hat, or some other appropriate head gear. Suppose if he was travelling in northern India, he would wear the cap that suited the conditions or fashion of that state so that he would not attract undue attention to himself and remain unrecognised.

When he intended travelling in search of masts, Baba would tell us to prepare an itinerary for a fortnight or three weeks. We would sit down with the time tables trying to coordinate dates and train timings with the places where Baba wanted to halt and so forth. It would take us a couple of days to prepare a proper itinerary before we could start on the journey. Prior to that, Baidul—you must have read of him in The Wayfarers—would go out mast hunting to get the addresses of the different masts. Then Baba would select the places he wished to visit from the list that Baidul had prepared. Baidul was like an advance scout.

The incident took place in 1942 during the second world war, we were travelling in a third class compartment, it was wartime, and third class—you have to experience the conditions, no amount of words can describe the experience of travelling third class in those days. It was terrible, we had to get through the windows, not just get through the windows, we had to be thrown through, or pushed through the windows.

Some people outside had to help you to get inside. If the compartment was overfull, then those inside would try to push you out through the window, while the persons outside would try to push you in. It went on like a sort of tug of war. It is a fact—no exaggeration at all. You couldn’t open the door because there were people sitting on the floor, any little space was all jam-packed with people either sitting or standing. You had to just throw yourself on the passengers.

All the mandali were strong, really strong people. They had to fight the crowd to get inside and get Baba inside. Many a time also, Baba has gone through the windows. First we had to fight for our seats, by elbowing here and there, somehow or other we got our seats. We asserted our right to sit on a particular spot on that long unpadded bench.

The reason we tried to assert our right on that bench was because later we could relinquish our right to our part of the bench in favour of Baba, so that Baba would have more seat. No one could criticize us for standing and giving more seat to Baba, and that is what we did. We gave Baba a comfortable seat—comfortable in the sense that he had more space. We just crowded ourselves together and some of us stood up to give him more room.

Four or five mandali at the most would travel with Baba on these trips. On this day we had been travelling like this with Baba for some time when we stopped at a big station. Baba was watching the passengers who tried to get into the compartment. There was an old man lifting up a small child, pleading with the passengers to at least take the child so that he can find some other compartment where he can just push himself in.

He was pleading in that huge crowd, amidst the great din, all to no avail. Baba had watched for some time. Then finally in desperation the man shouted at the passengers in the overcrowded train, ‘For God’s sake take the child in.’ As soon as he heard this, Baba immediately started to take an interest and he ordered the mandali through his gestures to take in the child.

I always had to be alert, Baba must not appear too conspicuous, because of his silence. If he drew attention to himself by his silence, people might recognize him or they may become suspicious of this unusual behaviour and take us to be spies, as they had done on several previous occasions. There are many stories of how we were considered to be spies and led to the police station and interrogated, because of Baba’s silence.

Well, Baba pointed out through his gestures, ‘Take in the child.’ Baba also spoke through his eyes and facial expressions—not only through his gestures. So I told Baba softly, ‘Baba it’s too dangerous, too dangerous to move from here.’

‘This old man, just have pity on the old man,’ Baba said.

We had no pity in our hearts for anybody mind you, we only had pity on ourselves, but because Baba was with us, we had to obey his wish. Well I looked at my mandali brothers, told them of Baba’s wish and whispered how it should be done. I nonchalantly went near the window and appeared to be unconcerned with what was happening outside, then I suddenly took the child inside.

There was such a din caused by the protests of the other passengers. ‘What are you doing? Have you no regard for our comfort?’ they said. In short, we received much abuse from the other passengers.

I said, ‘Look here, this child will not occupy any seat, we are going to have him on our lap, why do you worry about it?’ I told the man to go and find a seat soon, so that he can get into the compartment. I even said to Baba, ‘Baba it is very dangerous, we have the child and if the old man cannot find a seat in another compartment, what will happen to the child?’

Baba replied, ‘Don’t worry, he will find a seat.’

The train started, the old man must have found a seat in some other compartment and Baba put the child near him. Baba had been sitting comfortably with plenty of room and now he just sat normally and took the child next to him and no more space was taken up by the child. No one was displaced or made more cramped on the seat.

At the next station the old man with his long white beard again appeared at the carriage window and Baba somehow or other had a very soft corner in his loving heart for anybody with a long flowing white beard, who looked old or aged.

Baba said, ‘Again he has come.’

I said, ‘He has come to see if the child is safe.’ Baba then signalled me, tell him that he should not worry about it, he should sit in the compartment and not try to come every time the train stops, otherwise he might miss the train sometime. So I told him this and he was very thankful. He was a Mohammedan.

However, at the next station he came again and Baba said, ‘It is getting very dangerous now Eruch, it is your responsibility, if he misses boarding the train you will have to see about the child.’

I said, ‘Baba, it is still more dangerous if I take in the old man, it could be very dangerous for our whole journey, because the people will not tolerate such a thing now.’ Those were the days when no one cared for others, no compassion, no kindness, nothing of the sort. No one cared to give comfort to the old, each one thought only of himself.

Baba insisted I must take in the old man somehow or other—it was an order. So I went to the window and first spoke softly in his ear so that the others would not hear. I said, ‘Look here Hazrat, I am now attempting to take you inside the compartment, I will pull you inside, come at once, don’t hesitate. You should also try to assist me by putting your feet on the side of the carriage when I pull.’

I then attempted to pull him in suddenly. I got him half-way when the other passengers in the carriage started shouting and pushing, and then the other mandali helped me to get him in. There was such a din, no amount of pacification would help—nothing. They even started abusing us. ‘What is this? What are you all trying to do?’

‘Are you just trying to kill us here, we are so cramped?’

‘Have you no regard for us?’

‘Have you no heart?’

‘Why do you want to bring in this old man?’

I said, ‘His child is here, we must give him room, he is an old person, he is caring for his child, he might miss the train.’

‘But why the hell did you take the child in the first place?’ they asked. We pacified them as best we could and eventually things settled down again.

Now the story begins, the old man sat by Baba’s side, the child was lifted by the old man and placed on his lap so no one was displaced from their position in the compartment, but we had to hear a lot of abuse from the other passengers. Then the train started and being an express or mail train it travelled long distances between stops—fifty or sixty miles. Now Baba signalled me to start chatting with the old man.

It was our duty during our travels to talk with the passengers, we were not allowed to just sit there and keep quiet. All the time Baba would be very active even although he was so silent and seemed to be uninterested in what was going on around him. He appeared to be unconcerned about the affairs of the others, but all the time there would be the wire pulling, and we were all the time kept very active—on our toes, so to say, even while sitting down.

I always had to be very alert to Baba’s needs and wishes. ‘Ask him the addresses of masts and the like,’ Baba told me. I haven’t told you that during our journeys mast hunting, and going on mast tours, we found out some of the names of masts and their whereabouts just by speaking to the passengers during the journey.

Baba always kept us active. Even while waiting to travel by bus, and on the bus stand, he wouldn’t permit us to just stand there. We had to get information about the location of masts.

One mandali would be there just casually asking, ‘Are you of Poona?’

‘No, I am from Bombay.’

‘Oh, you are from Bombay. We are also from long distance. Do you stay in Bombay?’


‘You live or stay there?’

‘No, I live there.’

‘Oh, it’s very good, you must be living there for many years.’

‘Yes, from my childhood.’

‘Are there any good shrines there?’

‘Yes, there are good shrines.’

Sometimes the person would not know anything about this subject and we would not continue the conversation but just come back. Sometimes we found that the person was off our line as we called it.

However, if they were familiar with the subject we would try to find out more information. If they said, ‘Yes, I know about that shrine,’ we would ask if there were any good masts there. So that is how we came to know about the masts. Even while travelling by train we had to ask the co-passengers about the masts. That’s how we gathered so many names and places where the masts were found.

We felt that we had gathered the information, but behind us was He who used to inspire and control us, the one that pulled the wires. The silent wire puller was there unnoticed by anybody.

Likewise He told me, ‘Ask him.’

So I started putting the question, ‘Well, revered old gentleman,’ I said politely—we have our phrases you see.

He said, ‘Well, what do you want?’

‘Are you comfortable?’ I asked him.

He said, ‘Yes, thank you very much,’ he was grateful to me for helping him to get inside the compartment. He thought that I was the one doing all this.

‘Where are you going?’ I asked him.

‘I am going to a place called Gulbarga.’

‘It is a place of pilgrimage,’ I said.

‘Yes,’ he answered, ‘do you know it? Have you been to Gulbarga?’

‘Yes, a couple of times I have been there.’ I asked him if he lived there.

‘Yes, I live there.’

‘Is your family there?’


‘You must be paying visits to that big shrine.’

There is a very big shrine there. Gulbarga is a great place of pilgrimage. People from all over India, Mohammedans go there, even Hindus go there. It’s like Ajmer, you must have heard of Ajmer? It is of the same calibre.

‘Why are you interested in shrines?’ he asked me.

‘I am not interested in shrines,’ I said, ‘but I would just like to know if there are any masts there—men of God.’

He looked at me with his tiny eyes for a moment, then replied, ‘Oh, you are interested in masts?’

‘Yes,’ I said.

‘You don’t seem to be a Mohammedan.’

‘No, I am not a Mohammedan,’ I answered, ‘but casts don’t matter, I don’t belong to any religion like that.’

‘Oh, but you don’t look like a Hindu, and you are not a Mohammedan. How is it that you get interested in this?’

‘I just have an interest to visit these places and pay my respect to these saints and masts and the like.’

‘From where do you come?’ he asked me.

‘I come from Ahmednagar,’ I replied.

His expression completely changed. He said, ‘You come from Ahmednagar. Yet don’t you know, that the root of all these masts and saints and walis and pirs, the source of all this—the pivot of the universe—is there?’

‘Well give me some more information,’ I said.

‘Are you a Zoroastrian?’ he asked me.

‘Yes, I am a Zoroastrian by birth,’ I replied.

He looked at me, then said, ‘You are a Zoroastrian. Oh foolish young man, don’t you know that God has taken form on Earth? I am a Mohammedan, but I tell you that it has happened in your own cast—in your own religion.’

‘Who is that person?’ I asked.

‘Have you not heard the name of Meher Baba?’

‘Yes, I have heard.’

‘Aren’t you living in Ahmednagar?’


‘You have heard then. Why do you go about like this looking for saints and masts? Don’t be so foolish,’ he said. He went on exhorting me and admonishing me for my foolishness. I just kept quiet and waited until he had finished. Then I replied, ‘Yes I know that, but now that I am travelling and I have met you and you are going to Gulbarga, on my return I would like to pay my respects to any good mast there or wali or pir, what harm is there in that?’

He said, ‘What harm? But why do you go hunting like this, from place to place, there is no need for you to go there, catch hold of Meher Baba’s feet and remain there.’ He started exhorting me again, and then again he calms down.

He said, ‘What to say of my fate? I have visited Ahmednagar thrice in my lifetime just to pay my respects to Meher Baba.’ All this time, Meher Baba is sitting by his side. He said, ‘Every time I go there Meher Baba has either gone on tour to the West, or else he is in seclusion. I am a poor man, I come from a long distance to have His darshan, and I don’t get it. But you, you fool, you live there and He is in your own religion! Why can’t you go to Him there? Why do you travel around looking for saints and masts like this?’

I just kept quiet and listened quietly. I was standing by his side, there was no room for me to sit, so I just listened.

‘Is Meher Baba still in India or has He gone out – gone abroad?’ he asked.

‘No, He is in India,’ I replied.

Mind you even though Baba wanted to remain incognito he wouldn’t permit us to tell lies. We had to manipulate on the spur of the moment, but it shouldn’t be a lie. ‘He has not gone out of India, that much I know,’ I said. Then I tried to change the subject, otherwise he might pinpoint me to answer whether He is in Ahmednagar or Meherabad or wherever. I said that on my return to Ahmednagar I will make it a point to look Him up and meet Him.

Again he said, ‘I am such an old man now, I don’t know how many years I have left to live and I haven’t seen Him even once. Now I know for certain that I have not many more years to live. I will now bring my family to Baba. I will take them—my children and my wife—so that just once in my lifetime I will have had the satisfaction of having seen Him, this is the reason why I ask you whether Meher Baba is in India or has gone abroad.’

‘No, He is in India,’ I repeated.

During the time this talk was taking place, sometimes he was sympathetic towards me, sometimes he was trying to exhort me or to admonish me and so forth. Time passed until his station came and he got down with his child. I helped him to get out through the window, it was the easiest exit at the time. In the mean time there were other passengers who had opened the door and were starting to get down. It was a large, important station and a lot of people were leaving the train there.

After two or three minutes, when the old man must have left the platform, Baba suddenly told me to run and catch up to him and tell him that Meher Baba was sitting by his side.

‘Baba, it will be very difficult for me to face him and tell him that now,’ I said.

Baba insisted, ‘Go, run, run, before the train starts, just tell him and come back.’ Then he inquired if anyone had a picture of Baba. We had no picture of Baba, but I had in my bedding roll a recent copy of the Meher Baba Journal which was printed in those days. I told Baba that I had one in the journal, I got it out and Baba looked at the picture. Baba would always bow down to His picture when He blessed the picture for somebody, He either touched it to His forehead or bowed His forehead to it.

He said, ‘Run and give this picture to him and tell him that Meher Baba was by your side. Meher Baba is very happy with your love, He knows everything about you and you need not worry.’

I ran from the station into the street and saw the old man about to get into a Tonga—a horse carriage. I said, ‘Look here Hazrat, you know we had a talk in the compartment?’

He asked, ‘Why have you come?’

I said, ‘You know we were talking…’

He interrupted angrily, ‘You got down at Gulbarga, I tell you again to go to Meher Baba.’ He thought that I had got down in order to pay my respects to the shrine.

I said, ‘No, no, just hear me first, Meher Baba has sent me.’

‘What—Meher Baba has sent you—but where is Meher Baba?’

‘He was sitting by your side.’

Then you should have seen his expression and heard the abuse that he gave me. He not only abused me, but he abused my whole generation. ‘The youth of this generation are not fit to live on the Earth,’ he shouted, ‘They are treacherous, they are hypocrites.’ He went on and on in this vein.

I just gave him the picture and said, ‘Baba has blessed this picture, Baba wants you not to worry, He knows everything, He is happy with your love...’ and all that. By this time the engine was whistling so I had to run back to the station to catch the train, and the old man started running after me. As I ran back onto the platform, followed by the old man, the train was just starting to slowly move. Baba, by this time, was leaning half way out of the carriage window, just to see what was happening.

As I caught hold of the bar and swung inside the compartment of the train, I said to the old man who was just behind me, ‘Here is Baba, here, here, here,’ pointing to Baba at the window.

The old man was now running along the platform beside Baba and Baba blessed him by touching him on the head. The old man turned and angrily shouted at me, ‘Oh, you fool for not telling me.’ Again he reverently bowed to Baba while running along the platform as the train gathered speed.

This is how Meher Baba sometimes gave His darshan.


Eruch (tells the story about the air-conditioner):


In the beginning a few of the mandali used to go out with Meher Baba on mast tours. We had to bear a lot of hardships and although we were used to this hot summer heat, we did feel the heat a lot when we were in the open. We had to go out with Baba, journeying in trains under very trying conditions, burdened with a lot of luggage. Especially during the days of the war journeying in a third class train compartment was an ordeal. We were jam-packed in the compartment, there was no space between any two passengers tightly packed together. It was very difficult, but then Baba would prefer to go by third class when journeying in trains.

There were some well-to-do lovers of Baba who thought that during the hot summer they should give some comfort to Baba. At first the thought was only for Baba’s comfort, but then they started to think that they also would be more comfortable in first class because of the fans. Only recently do we find that in the Indian railway trains there are some fans in the third class compartments. Formerly there were no fans in third class compartments.

So after a lot of hesitation the mandali who could afford to pay for the tickets for Baba and those travelling with him approached Baba with a plea that he should take the mandali and travel in a first class compartment instead of the third class. When they first approached Baba for permission to travel first class Baba agreed. He was very pleased and happy with their expression of love, and they were also very happy.

However, it did not work out as expected. When Baba travelled first class, because he didn’t like wind or even a breeze blowing on him, the doors, windows, and ventilators were all shut. Also, we must not put on the fan. But at least we had the luxury of sitting comfortably and peacefully, without being abused by other co-passengers for overcrowding.

After this experience our brother mandali realized that Baba would not allow them to open the windows or use fans, so they thought of a better plan. They thought of having an air-conditioned coach for Baba while travelling by train—there is no fan but there is a cool temperature. So again they approached Baba to permit them to pay extra so that they could all travel comfortably by booking an air-conditioned compartment for him. They had to pay an extra fare for this, and naturally they had to travel first class.

Baba said, alright, very good. Baba was very pleased and happy with their expression of love, and we were all again very happy. These were summer days mind you and we were very, very happy that for the first time we were going to travel like this. We were travelling home from Madras, and at that time of the year the temperature sometimes reaches 115 or 120 degrees. We were very happy after the tiresome journey to now be returning home. So an air-conditioned compartment was reserved for Meher Baba and party.

When we entered the compartment it was heavenly—cool and fine. The two mandali who had paid for the compartment were there and we were very grateful to them, inwardly of course, we couldn’t express it to them because they didn’t like such expression. So we kept quiet about this subject, but we were grateful as we chatted away. Baba would be so close to us, and we would be very free with him—very, very free.

Now he wouldn’t permit us to sit quietly and just gaze at him, he wouldn’t like people gazing at him like that, he would like people to be buoyant, all the time saying something, doing something, making Baba laugh; and he also would make others laugh. It was a merry company around Baba. And that’s why, when in Australia, he would always catch hold of John Bruford to say something humorous. We were just having a good chat when all of a sudden, before the train started, Baba said, ‘Don’t you all feel the temperature is too low in this compartment?’ We looked at each other, we had to agree naturally. It was a very pleasant temperature, it was cool enough to be very pleasant. So we said, ‘Yes, Baba.’

Baba said, ‘Can you not regulate this?’

We said, ‘How do you want it?’

Baba replied, ‘Just raise the temperature a wee bit more, it is too cold, we might all catch cold and fall ill.’

We looked at each other—Baba’s concern would be for us—we would catch cold. Then if we caught cold we might give it to him. Anyone having a cold could not approach Baba. We had to have a mask on our face and sit in a corner. But first of all we had to inform Baba through somebody that we had a cold. Then Baba may permit that one to stay or require him to leave the room. We had to be very mindful not to catch a cold.

So he sent us out to approach the guard to see if something could be done to raise the temperature. The time was near for the train to start and we must act quickly.

We explained the problem to the guard. He said, ‘Well this is properly regulated, you can’t change it; it is according to the regulations. It should be such-and-such and you can’t change it.’ So we came back to Baba and told him. In the mean time the engine whistled, indicating that the train was about to start.

We told Baba that it can’t be regulated, but Baba was not happy about the whole thing. All of a sudden there was a delay, even although the engine had whistled. Baba said, ‘Can you not approach the guard to switch off this air-conditioner?’

You know, we knew what the result would be and we just looked at each other helplessly.

He said, ‘Hurry up, the train will start and it will be too cold for us here.’

Some of us rushed out, approached the guard and stopped him.

He said, ‘What’s the matter?’

‘We want the air-conditioner to be shut off, can you do that?’

He said, ‘Yes! That can be done.’

Baba said, ‘Hurry up, tell him to do it before the train starts.’

The guard switched off the air-conditioner as requested and the train started. You can imagine the oven that we were in. In an air-conditioned coach you can’t open the windows and there are no ventilators or fans. We were perspiring profusely and looking miserably at each other. But Baba was very happy— he was beaming. He said, ‘It’s perfect—it’s such a very good climate in here.’ He added, ‘You know, I don’t like breeze, and this is perfect.’

‘But Baba there is no question of breeze here, you are getting suffocated here—there is no question of breeze.’

‘No, no,’ said Baba, ‘this is good. This is how we should travel—it’s perfect.’

Whenever we had completed the work and were returning home and thought perhaps now that the work was finished we could have a little comfort, he always thought of some way of preventing this. Of course it was all part of our training.

When travelling by car he would like it all sealed up, and then he would look at us and we would all look sullen, then he would permit us to open the window just a wee bit so that there was a little cross ventilation, that was all. Somehow or other he didn’t like a breeze or direct sun, normally. But then when he would go out for mast hunting he would be free, just wearing a sadra, and having an umbrella sometimes—nothing more.


John Bruford (comments):


Sometimes it would be the opposite in Australia when he was driving Baba. Once he made John put down the driver’s window and John was sure it was too cold for Baba.




It was because of you. You had thought of his comfort and had put on the heater—now he was thinking of your comfort.


John Bruford:






He was very mindful about the comfort of others, he wouldn’t mind saying ‘Yes’ to please others. He wouldn’t say ‘No.’ He would please all, make them feel comfortable, happy. You were perspiring at that time.


John Bruford:


Yes, I had the windows wound up.


Eruch (continues):


Even with us sometimes he would see long faces and he would say, ‘Alright, open the windows slightly.’ He would permit us to open them now in recent years; formerly he was very strict with us when we were young. Not that we are too old now, but we were very energetic when young, we had stamina then and now of course we are half of what we were formerly.

I remember once travelling in first class compartment in the night and even Baba remembered that night. I was alone with Baba while we were travelling… some people had arranged a coupe for Baba, a first class coupe. Only two are permitted in a first class coupe. In this one, Baba and myself. Baba was sleeping there on a berth and I was keeping watch and it was so hot. Baba didn’t like any windows opened or anything. Here in India we have wire netting over the ventilators; automatic ventilation so that if someone shuts all the doors and windows there is still some ventilation. He looked up at them and said, ‘Stop up that also.’

I was drenched with perspiration, I had changed my clothes completely, I needed fresh air desperately. I still remember that night when I went very softly to the lavatory and opened the door—opened the pot, and breathed through it for some fresh air because there is a hole at the bottom opening directly to the outside, and then I came back. But Baba was not only lying on the couch, he was covered with blankets. It’s a fact, I don’t know how he felt comfortable in such conditions. He didn’t mind sweating. He perspired. Here even during last year… full of perspiration, the sadra would just stick on his body and become transparent.

We would have to change his bedding in winter also, and to such a degree that his pillow had a plastic cover on it, under the pillowcase. The watchman would remove the pillowcases in the night. Towels were sometimes used, and the towels would become drenched with perspiration.




Mani (reminds Eruch):


Tell them about the tea party.


Eruch (tells story about a Tea Party):


Mani reminds me about a tea party on a train. It so happened that during the days of the war, the trains were always overcrowded. There were many military trains in which only the military could travel, and even on the civilian passenger trains there would be compartments reserved for the military. We had no say in the matter whatsoever, we were just the poor travellers.

Whenever Meher Baba was travelling by train we had to get him and ourselves into a compartment as best we could. One day it so happened that the civilian passenger part of the train was overfull. However there were three or four compartments that were reserved for the military. Some were full with military personnel, but there was one compartment that contained only about half a dozen military people.

In desperation I approached a man in that compartment. Here in India when we plead we place our hands together like this. I did this and said, ‘Please allow us to come inside.’ Somehow or other I must have melted his heart with my pleadings because he permitted us to enter the compartment with all our luggage. We were very happy; we thought that it was Baba’s will and Baba’s grace that had caused us to be so fortunate. Little did we realize what was in store for us.

Sometimes we had to fight with the passengers, sometimes we had to plead, sometimes we had to bow down to them, sometimes we had to give a blow, it varied with the circumstances, but we had to travel with Baba irrespective of the method used to board the train. So we got inside and made ourselves comfortable. The military people were also very helpful, apparently they took a fancy to us. We were happy to stand, but they insisted that we all be seated. They were very pleased with us and we all started chatting and so on. Baba also was very cheerful.

Then suddenly, as we arrived at the next junction, we saw that the whole platform was crowded with military personnel with their guns and luggage. As soon as the train stopped, they started pouring into the carriage and continued to pour in beyond the capacity of the compartment, in doing so they started pushing and bumping here and there.

Soon after the train started again, the military personnel who had allowed us to enter the compartment started to pick a fight with those who had entered later because they were overcrowding. At first they started abusing them, but in no time there was a free-for-all fight in the compartment. Some had hockey sticks with them, some had metal bars, and they started using them to fight each other. We gathered around Baba to protect him during the riot that broke out in this huge, long compartment. I am sure that there would have been many deaths if it had continued for long.

Suddenly there was a loud clap and I looked around to see Baba standing on a bench with his arms outstretched gesturing for them to stop. They were so surprised that they stopped fighting and looked up at this strange man in a long white robe with outstretched arms. What could he be doing? What could he want? They all stopped fighting and just gazed at Baba.

Then Baba gestured for me to tell them that it is not good to fight among themselves like this. If you continue, you will kill each other. Just stop fighting and everything will be alright. You should do your duty and fight for your country, but if you start fighting among yourselves, what will happen? You will just kill each other. So stop fighting. Stop! He implored them.

Then Baba said that when the train stopped at the next junction he would order tea for all in the compartment and provide them with something sweet to eat. Indians are very fond of sweets and my aunty had given me some tins of sweets before we left on our journey.

At the next junction Baba had us order tea for everyone in the compartment. Then Baba with his own hands distributed the sweets as Prasad to all. The fight was quickly forgotten, they enjoyed the tea and sweets and soon all were happy in conversation. The remainder of the journey continued pleasantly and the soldiers were friendly towards each other. When they later left the train they were singing together.

It was truly remarkable how Meher Baba averted a very serious and explosive situation in that compartment. Without speaking a word he had stopped the military people from fighting and his actions must surely have prevented bloodshed that day.


Eruch (tells the story of the politician):


At times other than wartime, the accommodation on the trains was not always so cramped. During his travels, whenever possible Baba always liked to have a compartment to himself and his mandali so that he could freely express himself through his gestures without needing to be concerned that his silent gestures might attract the attention of other passengers. It was but natural, Baba had become man and so he had the needs of man and sometimes he needed privacy.

So whenever the opportunity arose in third-class travel, he would like to be alone with his mandali so that he could relax and be natural—take food when required or play games and all that sort of thing. One day we were lucky to have a small compartment to ourselves, and we were very happy and pleased because Baba was happy and pleased about it. The train had just started to move and we all thought that now the train was moving and we would be alone, at least for this section of the journey.

Suddenly the carriage door was flung open, a man got in and his luggage was pushed in behind him while the train was moving. He was some politician with a white khadi cap and starched shirt and all that. We were taken completely unawares. We thought that when the train had started we would be alone, but he had surprised us by getting on after the train was moving.

Baba signalled, ‘What is this?’ He was not at all pleased. He considered it to be an intrusion and because of this I pleaded with the man. I said, ‘Please sir, because we are travelling such a long distance and I see from your luggage that you are not, at the next halt which is only 10 or 15 minutes away would you mind finding a seat in another compartment? Please allow us to have this compartment to ourselves.’

He said haughtily, ‘What’s the matter? Is this reserved?’

‘No, it’s not reserved, we are just asking you if you will go to another compartment. You will be equally comfortable there, you are not travelling a long distance like we are. We would just like to spread ourselves out on this bench.’

He said, ‘No. What do you mean by asking me to vacate this compartment? Have you paid for the whole compartment?’ He was very arrogant. Baba then caught our attention and instructed us how to handle the situation. He signalled us all to observe silence—with Him and among ourselves. To speak to each other in signs using gestures freely and to laugh and make a noise—things like that. Baba was very annoyed, he signalled, ‘This will teach him a lesson.’

Gustadji was with us, he was in silence and we all knew his sign language. Usually Gustadji was restricted in the use of his signs while we were travelling so as not to create a scene. Otherwise it might become too obvious that he was not speaking and people might wonder what was going on. Now Gustadji was given full permission to express himself freely with his signs. So he started to express himself by using sings and to laugh, and I also laughed and commenced to express myself using the sings.

The politician was dismayed, he wondered what on earth was happening and he tried to start a conversation with me. He said, ‘Where are you going?’ As soon as he asked me that I just looked at him, then turned my face away and went on making the signs to the others.

Then he started asking Pendu, ‘Where are you going?’ Pendu just looked at him, then turned his face away and went on gesturing and laughing. Many times he asked us and we just turned our faces away from him while continuing to converse among ourselves in sign language.

This was all too much for the politician. At the next stop he hurriedly got out of the carriage and shouted for the porter, ‘Coolie! Coolie! Come here and pick up this luggage!’ Baba reminded us to thank him. Baba’s sign for thank you was shaking hands. When his luggage was out of the carriage I just said to him, ‘Thank you sir.’

Baba smiled and signalled to us, ‘That serves him right.’


(Mani reminds Eruch about the thief story)


Eruch (tells story about a thief):


Kaka, who died recently—some of you have heard of him—he was our treasurer when we were on mast tours with Meher Baba. He was the one who carried the money to pay for our tickets and our expenses while travelling. He would open his wallet every now and then to pay our day-to-day expenses and he also carried the change. I carried our reserve of money—a wad of notes for safe keeping.

One day it so happened that we were in the interior contacting masts. We had stopped at a village in the early hours of the morning and Baba was in a room alone with a certain mast. I had a bundle of ten rupee notes in my coat pocket—a big pocket here at the top of my coat. When we travel with Baba we can’t afford to go only in a shirt or like this, we must have baggy clothes so that we can carry Baba’s things such as napkins, handkerchiefs and other personal items. Baba’s alphabet board must also slide inside our pockets. It was a big board, so it needed a big pocket. My dress was a very baggy dress—trousers and coat with many pockets here there and everywhere.

Baba was inside the room contacting a mast and we were not permitted to see what he was doing in those early days, we were just standing outside waiting. I was wearing a coat and I had a wad of ten rupee notes in the breast pocket of my coat. I soon found that the villagers were gathering around us. They started behaving very friendly with us. We couldn’t just stand there doing nothing, so we started chatting—our duty was to ask for masts in different areas.

As we were chatting together, I noticed one person with a paralysed hand. He was very friendly. He stood close beside me while he was chatting, then very stealthily he reached his hand into my pocket and pulled out a note. I didn’t see it at first, but I heard a little swishing sound, then looked around and saw a note flying past. I looked up and saw that he was the person holding it.

I caught hold of his wrist and dragged him behind the room where Baba was contacting the mast, because there was a crowd of villagers in front of it, and I was determined to give him a tight slap. I had just raised my hand to do so, when someone caught hold of my hand, I looked and saw that it was Baba holding my hand.

Baba said, ‘What are you doing?’

‘Baba, he stole my ten rupee note,’ I said.

‘Did you do that?’ he asked the man.

After the man had admitted it, Baba just pinched the lobe of his ears. ‘Never do that again,’ Baba told him. Then he told me to give back the ten-rupee note to him. He said, ‘The money is for those in need. Had he not been in need, why would he have done that? Give it to him.’

‘Don’t do it again,’ Baba exhorted him.

‘Had Baba not come at that moment, I would have given him two or three slaps for doing such a thing.’


I am now going to tell another very funny story that I told Rhoda Dubash the other day. Suddenly I have remembered it. Francis, even you may not have heard it before.


Eruch (tells story about a corpse):


It so happened that these were the days of the partition between India and Pakistan and although it was a bloodless revolution, yet there was a lot of slaughter—half a million on either side of the partition. The partition was bloodless but after the partition there was much bloodshed, with Mohammedans killing Hindus and Hindus killing Mohammedans.

However, Baba let nothing prevent him from doing his work. With Baba, whether there was a World War or there was slaughter on the streets on a much smaller scale, he still continued to do his work. He would take us all from one place to another—including all the women mandali—with all our paraphernalia.

Those were the days when people would not budge from their houses, yet he would take the whole family with him. He would even ask us to search for houses and bungalows for three, four, or even five days as if nothing was happening, as if all was completely normal. Nothing mattered, nothing stopped him from doing his work.

Those were the days when there were corpses taken by the trainloads. The corpses were picked up from beside the rail tracks, and just thrown into the train compartments and taken to the railway stations to be burned or to be buried en masse. At this time, these people had such fury in their heads—they knew of no God, they respected no saints, human life itself was not respected, yet we noticed that for some reason or other they respected the corpses. We came to know this, and we also came to know that if we could get seats in a compartment where there were corpses, we would have a comfortable journey.

We knew all these tricks of our journey, so one day we were lucky to get a very tiny compartment next to the engine. A tiny compartment containing only two bench seats—in third class as usual. We were happy, Baba was there, six or seven mandali were with him, and we were chatting and whiling away the time until we arrived at our destination. The platforms were crowded with people and every time that the train stopped at the stations or the junctions people would rush to board the train. But because our compartment was right at the end, or rather at the beginning of the train near the engine, no one dreamed of coming there at first. But when the whole train was full with passengers then they started coming towards the engine.

Baba would ask us, ‘What is the position? Is the platform very crowded? Is the crowd coming toward our end?’

‘No, they are going to the other end, Baba.’

‘Very good,’ Baba would say.

But then later, we found that they were coming toward us. We said, ‘Baba now is the time that we should roll up our bedding, otherwise they will rush in and it will be too late.’ And they would rush in, they didn’t care for anybody.

Baba calmly said, ‘Don’t worry, I will lie down and sleep like this.’ Little did we know that Baba himself would impersonate a corpse. He took a white sheet, tucked it under his feet, then as he lay down he pulled the other end up above his head, completely covering himself with the sheet. Then he lay very still beneath the sheet while we remained seated. When the other passengers came and saw what they thought was a corpse, they went away—no one entered our compartment. When the train started, Baba sat up and smiled, gesturing ‘It’s a good trick, eh?’

Did you hear that story before Francis?


Francis (replies):




Eruch (continues):


One day we were very exhausted and our resting places would not be hotels or air conditioned rooms or anything of the sort in those days with Baba—but why do I say, ‘In those days’ it is the same even now—these days also. We were then, and are now, used to having just the basic necessities, without any luxury.

I still remember when we went to America, the second trip, or was it the first trip…? Holiday Lodge was reserved for Baba, the mandali and some of the Baba lovers from the West. Some exorbitant price was paid for Baba’s luxury suite but what happened was, although Baba and the mandali stayed there, we did not use anything. We all slept on the floor, nothing was used, including the luxury bed.

That bed was so spongy, so springy, we didn’t care for that sort of thing. Baba slept on the floor and I slept there on the floor also, or rather hardly slept, the mandali used to keep watch in turns. It was just the same to us, whether we were in a palace or on the station platform, we lived simply.


Eruch (tells another Thief story):


One time we were on the station platform very exhausted. It was dark, Baba said that we would have to pass the night there and catch the next train early in the morning. He said we would be sleeping there, so we went to the end of the platform and spread out the bedding for Baba on the earth itself—the end of the platform is never floored, it is just filled with earth. So we just spread out our things there, and all the mandali slept around Baba. It was the custom, Baba was in the centre—on one side myself, on another side Pendu, Kaka, or Gustadji, with the others around him here and there. We would be keeping watch in turns. This night the watch keeper must have been feeling drowsy. In the mean time, we had all gone to sleep with Baba… when all of a sudden I found Baba was shaking me to wake up. I got up from that sound sleep. ‘What’s the matter? Where am I?’ I said, then I realized I was on the station platform. Baba wanted to know, ‘Who is here?’

I found that between Baba and myself there was somebody else. I looked and found there was a man sleeping next to Baba. He had got into the middle of our group and hidden under our covering. I woke him and said, ‘Who are you?’ As soon as I woke him, he got up and started running. Then the police began whistling. They were watching for a thief they had been following, but he had eluded them. The thief had taken protection near Baba, not knowing it was Baba Himself. He had hidden from the police with the help of our bedding covering him. But when he left his hiding place under our bedding, the police caught him.

These are just some of the interesting little incidents that happened while we were travelling with Baba, but whether we lived in a palace or on the station platform, it was all the same to us as long as we could be by Meher Baba’s side.

On some days Baba would permit us to take food, on some days he would tell us to observe a fast, on some days he would tell us to remain only on drinks—soft drinks, aerated water or buttermilk, something like that.


Eruch (tells the story of the fixed bargain):


The day on which this story begins was the day after our fast. We got down at a station, which was a terminus, early in the morning about two o’clock. Neither Meher Baba nor the mandali had eaten for over 24 hours. Later we had to catch another train, so while we were waiting we washed our hands and faces and refreshed ourselves. We got ready to board the train which was already standing at the platform without lights. The train was due to departure at about five o’clock.

We sat there on the platform early in the morning, until it was about four-thirty, then we put our luggage in one of the compartments of the train that was standing ready to move in half an hour or so. The train lights were not on and we just sat there quietly. From the compartment Baba spotted a stall that was just being opened. He said, ‘Let’s go there and buy something to eat.’

‘It’s too early,’ I said.

‘No, that fellow has opened the stall,’ said Baba.

We looked and saw a boy was dusting the jars—you know the jars that contain sweet and pastry and such things? Someone was dusting there and as we approached we saw a man praying. He was standing in front of a supporting pillar on the station platform and there was a picture on the pillar. As we came closer we saw that it was a picture of Meher Baba and the man was praying to it. The stall was beyond the pillar. Baba didn’t pay any attention to the man praying. There was a heap of oranges in the stall and Baba said, ‘Let’s buy oranges.’

I asked the price of the oranges, then Baba started to take an interest in bargaining for them. The boy said twelve annas for twelve fruit—twelve cents for twelve fruits. Baba said, ‘No, as we are buying six it is better that you reduce the price.’ He is telling all this to me through the signs and I am negotiating with the lad. Later I will show you how Baba used the signs in silence.

So I started bargaining with the boy. I told him that he should give the oranges to us for ten cents a dozen. Somehow or other the boy agreed and we bought six oranges for five cents from him.

Well we were very happy and we returned to our compartment on the train. As we passed the man praying, I said to Baba, ‘Look, he is praying to your picture.’ Baba said, ‘Yes, alright.’ But he didn’t pay any heed to him.

Then we sat down in the compartment again and Baba gave an orange to each of us with his own hands. I took Baba’s orange went to a tap to wash it before I cut it and served it to Baba. When I returned from the tap, a man came running from the stall, it was the man we had seen praying to Baba’s picture. He was the owner of the stall. He started arguing with us. He said, ‘You are all elderly people, yet early in the morning, before I open the business, you come and swindle my boy.’ He started accusing us of robbing the boy.

I said, ‘What’s the matter with you, we have purchased it, we bargained no doubt, but your boy agreed.’

‘You had no right to bargain with the boy, he was just dusting the jars, I cannot permit you to have it that way, my prices are fixed, I never cheat, I never sell at reduced price.’

Baba tells us through the signs, ‘The price was agreed, the bargain was struck—it is the duty of the business man that once the bargain is struck, not to go back.’

I knew that he was a Baba devotee, so I had some feeling for him. I wanted for his sake that Baba should have his fruit, but it was not in his fate you see.

He started fighting with us, he said, ‘Nothing doing, my prices are all fixed. You can’t change this.’

I said, ‘But once a bargain is struck, why do you insist on this, what will one cent matter?’

‘What will one cent matter to you if you pay me more?’ He asked me.

I said, ‘We have fixed the bargain.’

He said, ‘No, you pay me one cent more.’

I said, ‘No, nothing doing.’

Baba said, ‘No. Once a bargain is fixed it is the duty of the man who deals in this to forego any loss.’ Among Indians it is customary that once a bargain is fixed for the first time in the day, the businessman has to just take it very happily to ensure that his whole day passes off happily. Baba, through me, is trying to tell him all these things. But in spite of even Baba trying to tell him these things, this fellow fought with us and took the fruit from out of our hands—took the fruit out of our mouths you might say.

Baba said, ‘It is in his fate.’

I said, ‘Should I tell him who you are?’

Baba said, ‘If you tell him, the whole stall will come here, but what will that profit him?’

It was in his fate that he would pray to a picture of Meher Baba while he was in Meher Baba’s physical presence. This much and no more.



I am sorry I am prompted to tell you stories only about trains and travel, if you feel bored we will change the topic.


Eruch (tells a story about Gustadji):


If you remember the stories that I have already told you, you will notice that in them we had a lot of hardships. The other things are forgotten, but the incidents that most easily come to my mind are the things that we had to fight for—the difficult times, with the hardships—I most easily remember these times.

One day we had been travelling for a long distance and got down at a small station where a good mast was found. It was now night time and we were at this small station waiting for the next train. We had bought our tickets and were ready and waiting for the train to come. We knew that express or mail trains did not stop for more than two minutes at a station like this.

We had a lot of luggage and we knew very well that it would be impossible for us all to get inside one compartment with all the luggage, all the mandali, Meher Baba, and Gustadji who was also silent. So among ourselves we decided that Eruch and Baba would go in a first class compartment on condition that Eruch take all the luggage with him in the first class compartment. Then the mandali would somehow fight their way inside a third class compartment.

It was very difficult because in the dead on the night the first class compartments should all be locked. It was a very dangerous game we were playing, but there was no other way out. The mandali said that they would get inside the third class compartment once they knew that we were in a first class compartment.

We planned our actions well and we were ready when the train came. Luckily a first class compartment stopped right in front of us, I turned the handle and the door opened. I said, ‘Yes, it is alright.’ The others then started going to the third class compartment. We had our signals arranged, as soon as everything was alright, we would turn on the torches and signal ‘all’s well.’

I started putting luggage into the compartment with the help of the porter. In the mean time Gustadji had come to me and said, ‘Eruch, I would like to travel first class, I will help you with the luggage.’ As Gustadji was in silence, if I tried to converse with him by deciphering his finger gestures in the night, we would waste so much time that the whole operation we had so carefully planned would go astray. So I said, ‘Alright, come on now, help with the luggage.’

I started to take in some luggage, he also went in and soon a pile of luggage was there on the carriage floor. Unfortunately, the first class compartment we had chosen was a coupe. Having a lower berth, an upper berth above that, and a passageway in front of the two berths. I settled Baba in the carriage first and then put in the luggage with the help of Gustadji and the porter, I had no time to notice what was happening. But in the lower bunk I realized that there was a good soul who just kept quiet. He could have taken objection to our being there, pulled the chain and had us thrown out. But he kept quiet—I admired him.

I arranged the luggage carefully so as not to disturb him. I made Baba sit on the lower berth near his feet—all in the dark because there was no light, the light was switched off. I worked with the help of a torch. When I finished I felt very satisfied. The luggage was all properly piled up; Baba was comfortable; I covered his knees and feet; everything was alright, nothing went wrong.

All of a sudden I remembered that I should signal with the torch ‘All’s well.’ When I did this I received a reply, signalled by mandali, ‘All’s well.’ The train was now moving. All of a sudden Baba pulled my coat and gestured, ‘Gustadji has gone—where is Gustadji?’

‘Oh God,’ I said.

Baba comforted me and said, ‘Don’t worry, it doesn’t matter, at the next junction you send a wire to the station master saying our man is left there.’ Gustadji was in silence. What would he do now on his own? All that feeling of success that I had now melted into thin air. I just remained silent and waited.

What to do now? I started planning. Gustadji being an old man, observing silence, what will he do in the dead of night left there, and without money? He wouldn’t touch money. I was just thinking and planning what to do. Baba kept quiet and I kept quiet.

All of a sudden, while the train is moving fast we heard a noise. I thought that it was coming from the next compartment. I thought someone must be making that noise in the next compartment, but I kept quiet.

Baba said, ‘What is it? Ants or something?’

I said, ‘Yes, I can hear some scratching—something like that.’ But then there was no light and I didn’t like to disturb the man who was sleeping by turning it on. He had permitted us to enter the compartment with all this heap of luggage and had kept quiet about it.

Again that noise. I looked at the wall with the torch and I saw something there—part of a door. The upper berth in this carriage was vacant and I thought that I had made another mistake and locked a first class passenger in the latrine. I said, ‘Baba, the top berth is vacant, the passenger must be locked inside, I will have to remove the luggage.’

Baba said, ‘Hurry up, remove the luggage, otherwise he will complain and have us thrown out.’

I again laboured lifting the trunks and putting them aside from in front of that narrow door. When I had removed everything from in front of the door, all of a sudden, out came Gustadji through the door. After taking his first load of luggage into the compartment he must have gone to the toilet. In the mean time, in the darkness we had continued loading the luggage until it blocked the door and prevented him from coming out.



The men return to the hotels to meet the women and then travel to the Avatar Meher Baba Poona Centre to watch films.











Sunday 18th May



The whole group leaves Poona for Meherabad and Meherazad at 6 a.m.


9 o’clock the group is greeted by Mansari and some of the mandali at Upper Meherabad and taken to Meher Baba’s tomb. The Master’s Prayer and the Prayer of Repentance are said and then Australian Arti is sung.



Master’s Prayer


O Parvardigar, the Preserver and Protector of all!

You are without Beginning and without End;

Non-dual, beyond comparison; and none can measure You.

You are without colour, without expression, without form and without attributes.

You are unlimited and unfathomable, beyond imagination and conception;

eternal and imperishable.

You are indivisible; and none can see You but with eyes divine.

You always were, You always are, and You always will be;

You are everywhere, You are in everything; and You are also beyond everywhere and beyond everything.

You are in the firmament and in the depths. You are manifest and unmanifest, on all planes, and beyond all planes.

You are in the three worlds, and also beyond the three worlds.

You are imperceptible and independent.

You are the Creator, the Lord of Lords, the Knower of all minds and hearts;

You are omnipotent and omnipresent.

You are Knowledge Infinite, Power Infinite, and Bliss Infinite.

You are the ocean of Knowledge, All-Knowing, Infinitely Knowing; the Knower of the past, the present and the future; and You are Knowledge itself.

You are all-merciful and eternally benevolent.

You are the Soul of souls, the One with infinite attributes.

You are the trinity of Truth, Knowledge and Bliss.

You are the Source of Truth, the Ocean of Love. You are the Ancient One, the Highest of the High;

You are Prabhu and Parameshwar;

You are the Beyond-God, and the Beyond- Beyond God also;

You are Parabrahma; Paramatma; Allah; Elahi; Yezdan; Ahuramazda; and God the Beloved.

You are named Ezad, the Only One worthy of worship.



Prayer of Repentance


We repent O God most merciful, for all our sins;

For every thought that was false or unjust or unclean;

For every word spoken that ought not to have been spoken;

For every deed done that ought not to have been done.

We repent for every deed and word and thought

Inspired by selfishness;

And for every deed and word and thought inspired by hatred. 

We repent most specially for every lustful thought,

And every lustful action;

For every lie; for all hypocrisy;

For every promise given, but not fulfilled;

And for all slander and backbiting. 

Most specially also, we repent for every action

That has brought ruin to others;

For every word and deed that has given others pain;

And for every wish that pain should befall others. 

In your unbounded mercy, we ask you to forgive us, O God,

For all these sins committed by us;

And to forgive us for our constant failures

To think and speak and act according to your will.



Australian Arti


O glorious, eternal Ancient One your face is a bright, transcendental sun - lighten this dark world and the tears I weep; my heart, Meher, I give to you to keep.


Creator, yet creationless you are - truth and Truth's Body, divine Avatar who, through compassion the three worlds maintains - destroy this ignorance that life sustains.


These five lights are the whirling spokes of breath of the world-wheel that bears me on to death unless you, who are infinitely kind, break the wheel's hub which is conditioned mind.


This incense is my love, these fruits my art which to please you I have shaped from my heart; accept them as you would a simple flower that has no use beyond its shining hour.


You are my Self. I sing to you in praise and beg your love to bear me through the days till you, the Ever living Perfect One, illume my darkness with your shining sun.


The group visits other buildings in upper Meherabad, including the old Water Tower where they saw Baba’s favourite “kamli” coat, His sandals, and a painting by Rano. They were also free to spend time in Baba’s tomb.


At 11 o’clock the group eats lunch near Samadhi.


After lunch the group is escorted to lower Meherabad. The group meets Padri, who shows them around lower Meherabad and the group meets Mohammed the Mast.


Padri (addresses the group):


Where you are now sitting is Lower Meherabad. It is called Lower Meherabad, it is now the Trust property, and this building was built in 1949. Baba first came here with the mandali in 1923 when we occupied an old building here which you will see now, where Mohammad is residing which was built during the First World War during 1916. From 1916 to 1949 we occupied the building. Then later on this building was built. This is almost a replica of the old building except that this hall is 50 feet by 25 instead of 40 by 20. Otherwise it is a same replica. And during the meeting times, Baba used to sit here and give audience to the groups. Western group, Eastern group, Northern group, Southern group, and this was here where He used to meet these groups to talk about the Centres, their difficulties and whatnot.

And, before this building was built, when Baba used to reside in Upper Meherabad, the cabin that you saw where the stretcher is kept, His audience hall was this cabin where we shall see now. It is with the four signs of the religions. And during the meeting times also, there was one small room there where He also used to give audience to a group of people. But the whole group, say now you are here, so you got the whole bunch and you just sit here. Eruch and Francis would sit on His side and would read His hands or read the board.

And the mandali also lived here, in the next room. There is kitchen here, bathroom, everything. There is a dispensary here, there is a dispensary for Don also, Don used to give the allopathic side, I used to be the homeopathic side, the women were attended by Donkin and Nilu, Nilu who is dead now, one of the old pictures is there.

And this is where we lived for a number of years, then Baba went to Meherazad, Meherazad was literally established in 1943. Then Baba left from 43 to 69, and in-between He paid a visit here whenever He felt like paying a visit, or whenever these villagers and people here roundabout clamour for His darshan. And this is where He gave darshan.


Now Francis, what do you want me to do? Would we go to Mohammed now?


Francis (comments):


Ah yes, take them around to different places, Baba’s former cabin, the original cabin.




Yes, yes I will but any questions?




Ask any questions you want to.



Padri (takes group on walking tour of lower Meherabad, providing commentary):


Come then, we go. We go to Baba’s cabin first.


(Everyone walking, quiet chatting, birds chirping)


Francis was telling me, if Mohammed asks for money you are not to give it to him. Don’t give him any money, if you have got anything to eat and you want to give him anything to eat, just don’t give him any money please. Baba’s orders. No money at all.

Now this building, the roof has changed but the structure remains the same. This was built under Meher Baba’s supervision in 1923, Baba Himself supervised this building and it is called a hut. In this He secluded Himself, kept silence for a few days, and this wooden structure that you see here on our side is called the Table in which Baba again secluded Himself and wrote that Book. It is a small structure. This is the Table. It was formerly there in the Dhuni, Dhuni is that fire under the tree provided in 1925. And this is the Table.

Before He actually started observing ______ from 1925 onwards, in between the intermission He observed ___5:50___ for eight days, He didn’t eat or anything. But remember one thing, there was always a guard, a man wide-awake during the night, and during the day unless Baba told him to get up. There was always a man, there was always a man, anybody, just anybody, and the duties were related to anybody, night watch, day watch. If He tells anybody, “Alright get up, alright out, I want to be alone.”

But in this room, He secluded Himself in this room, this door was closed and He never used to come out, everything was done inside, and the supply was through these windows. He never showed His face even. This is what we call the Hut, built in 1923, only the roof was renovated about seven or eight years ago.


Padri (talks about the Dhuni):


In India it is a custom to have a fire, and many of these masts and saints and people have always a fire burning. So Baba also had a fire burning and it was a Dhuni. This was lighted in September 1925 and during that time there was a famine and people clamoured for rain and petitioned Baba that, “Please, please give us rain.”

“Alright,” Baba said, “go back home.” They couldn’t reach home, they were drenched, and that night it was lighted, and it was lighted somewhere during the September; I couldn’t give you the date exact, but it was in 1925. And Baba’s Table was just under this tree somewhere where you are standing. Later on this platform was built, but this Dhuni was lighted every twelfth of the month, and according to Baba’s orders we light it every twelfth of the month.

And Baba was here, on the table here and there was a toilet built for Him, He used to come out only for the toilet and come out on the platform. That’s all, all the while in side. “Give me coffee,” “Give me tea,” or give me anything, according to His will we used to provide. And it used to come from the kitchen there where the ladies used to live. Temporary structures, all this was temporary structures, so that’s what I say that this building, the real building was built in 1949, otherwise it was just tin and bamboo and material whatnot. “Pull it down, build it, pull it down, build it.”


Alright, now we go to Mohammed. But this is the fire, it is called the Dhuni.


(New Western Speaker)

Sometimes when Baba would be on mast tour he would ask Mohammed when Baba would be back and he would give the day and date when Baba would be returning.



(Padri introduces the Australian group to Mohammed in Marathi, Mohammed says they are all “mad Iranis.” Roy and Ross who are approaching the group late start to laugh and Mohammed says, “You too!”)




He has been to France so I am asking him now, “Would you like to go to France, because these people are from France.”

He says, “No, I don’t want to go now.”


Now, when he was brought from Bombay in 1936, according to Baba he was trapped between the third and the fourth plane. He was stuck, literally stuck, and after he came in contact with Baba, Baba pushed him into the fifth, and in this birth he won’t make any further progress except that he is in the fifth, but he is assured. He skipped fourth; Baba made him skip fourth, and pushed him into fifth.


There was another one by the name ____ who is buried here.


Now if you come after one year, he [Mohammed] will remember you all, that you have come, you have come, he will remember you, he is conscious, fully conscious.


You ask him give you something, he will never give it. He is like a child, just like a child.

I am asking Him whether he has got any complaints against this; she is the one who serves him. She [Mohammed’s attendant] gives him food and bath and everything. I ask him does she give you tea and food and he says, “She gives me everything.” When he is not satisfied he just shouts and calls to me and complains about her. Then I shout back and there is peace again. Just like a child. No malicious at all, absolutely none.


(Mike Kinnear has a banana in his pocket and Mohammed spots it and asks for it)


He’s seen the banana, come on now. You have to share now! You can’t escape that!


(Mike gives the banana, everyone is joking and laughing)


He has seen that, that’s his share now. I’m telling you you’ve got to now. Let it come, let it come.


(All cheer)


Whatever it is, you must be destined to receive it…he says.


Carrie Ben Shammai:


To receive what?




Anything, you must be lucky enough. Destiny you know.

(To Mohammed) Dada, you are from Baba’s France?




Carrie Ben Shammai:


Padri, tell him I come from Israel.




He doesn’t know anything except France. He has only learned France because he has gone to France.


(To Mohammed) France, you go France?







(To Mohammed) You just nod?


(To the group)You see, you play with him, you talk with him, you joke with him just like a child. You don’t annoy them, never annoy a mast.  Don’t annoy them at all, and don’t pester them.


          (To one of the Westerners)


He asked me the question that, “Last time you came I gave you a kerchief, what did you do?”

Then I said that he is telling a lie, he never gave you a kerchief.

And he says, “Yes you are right, he never gave me a kerchief.” Once you receive it he has never forgotten it.

“You have plenty of kerchiefs, why do you need it?”

“Let it be, I need it, I need them all.”


(Mohammed gives Joy Sherwood and John Borthwick scarves)


This is the old building we stayed in up to 49, from 23 onwards to 49. It is all falling down. And this is one of the rooms of the old building.

(To someone taking a picture) no, no, your lens is covered by paper! Your lens is covered.


(Padri gives some statements by Mohammed prior to Baba dropping His body)

But Dada is going for one week.”

He said, “No, he’ll be back here by tomorrow evening. He will be back here by tomorrow evening.” And, “Dada will drop his body.”

That was the second statement, but so far I have not known him here, I have not known him say that Baba is coming back, we never asked. If we asked he might say anything, babble anything just like a child. But that couldn’t be true, but on his own initiative if he said that Dada will be back tomorrow and Baba will drop his body, that is an absolute fact.



The group then leaves for Meherazad, on arrival they were greeted by the mandali. They are then given a tour by Francis. The group sees Mandali Hall, the Blue Bus, the New Life Caravan and Baba’s Room-- this is the room where Baba left His body. The group was advised to see Seclusion Hill from a distance as it was too hot to climb, but some of the group did climb.






Francis: (in Meherazad)


          (At Mandali Hall)


Baba would sit down here and the mandali would sit along here. He used to retire from here about 6 o’clock in the evening and he would come back about 6 o’clock in the morning.

This side leads to the women’s quarter, that’s Mehera, Mani, and Goher, they used to sit behind here, closed up now, and the other women, Rano, Naja, Meheru, here.

Baba used to often, that’s why these chappals we put here, he often used to sit here in the afternoon. One of the last things he did here, I think it was the day before he dropped his body—you all know about his draughts game, checkers, he used to play draughts with us, well one of the last things he did was have a game of draughts with Kaka. Baba was a very excellent cheat, he would put one in his mouth and draw one of the other fellas away you see, you would suddenly discover that half your men were gone, you wouldn’t remember where they had gone to. Of course poor old Kaka, he was pretty dim by now you know cause he’d had five serious heart attacks and several other ailments before over the years and his mind wasn’t, -- he used to mix things up, words, he’d speak in three or four languages all mixed up together and Baba would laugh and when he woke up to Baba’s trickery, he was laughing, Baba was laughing, and before you could say Presto Baba had won the game.



We used to come over here, Baba was serious, he’d sit here (chair) and we’d sit around on the floor. Anything else? Any questions? Would each one, each one take Baba’s darshan. (At the chair)


(Broke into 2 groups)

(Blue Bus)


Baba toured all over with the women in the early days, but there used to be a driver’s seat here. It was mostly Eruch and Kaka, Eruch would do the driving—Kaka sort of looked after things...and how many were on the bus, how many, somewhere about 20 I think. Women, Eastern women mostly, American, there was one English woman for a time, I know there was a French woman. I think I don’t remember the exact details of all those, but they drove all over India right up to the Northwest country and then back. It wasn’t done all in one drive; it was done in sections over two or three years.


Woman (questions Francis):


I remember Mani pushing a donkey...




No, that was a different thing.




Oh sorry.




That’s the next thing we go to, second group I want you to stay here because we can’t get in all together. (Repeats same information to second group and adds): There was another bus tour, it was a separate thing, there was a bullock cart pulled by two bullocks, a camel and a camel cart, an extra bull or two, sheep, pigs, and goats and all sorts of things they took along with them. That was the New Life period which they went into in 1949. At some point it was disposed and some of this was discontinued and then Baba walked and Baba went straight to the top of the hill and stayed there where he had the mandali get a cabin and sat up there for some weeks. The cabin he had dismantled and brought down here, it’s behind here.

Everyone would be going, going, going and Baba would give orders and expect it straight away. “What’s the hold up? Why isn’t the cabin there now? I told you bring the cabin down!” So he went from there into the cabin and it was the great forty day seclusion which I suppose you’ve read something about. I forget the details of that one too—it was divided into sections, I think four quarters, I think one time he ate so and so and another time he ate so and so.

So it used to be used by Aloba during a long night watch. He used to get a couple of hours sleep during the day time; he used to use it as a quiet spot.


(Move to Kaka’s room)


This room is his bedroom, his office, and his sitting room, receiving visitors. This cloth over here, he has a piece of cloth, various size envelopes and other things, like this thing here you see, dotted along here, he used to just take this off in the night time and make that bed there with one blanket to cover him. And when its time for us to move somewhere, like for instance from here to Guruprasad, he just rolls his bed roll up, straps that, folds this and he’s ready. It’s quite fantastic really; he had all his reference material in two trunks, there’s one here and one here. If he wants some papers he takes it out, makes a pile and puts it back again. Well this I don’t know. I’m not sure there is a mosquito curtain hanging here, I don’t know why he put that there, and it’s something recent. Might be insects. There used to be a bat coming here a lot.

Kaka was shorter than me, 5’2’’, he was just really a holy terror, he just roared at everybody, he roared his last roar...

For the last year Baba was with him a lot he was sort of Baba’s pet. Anything he wouldn’t agree with, he’d fight anyone at the drop of an ill word. Over the last year a great change came over him—he became a happy child and the play fellow of all, especially Baba. Now and again the old fire would burst into flame. He used to entertain Baba nearly everyday with a nonsense name repetition in which we would all join. Baba would beat the tempo faster and faster until we were out of breath. Baba would be doubled over with laughter. He would tell us that Kaka would momentarily take away His burden.




The group is finished with their tour given by Francis. They then meet Rhoda Dubash who tells them the story of her wedding.


Rhoda Dubash:


And I said, "Adi, you believe in Baba?"

And he said, "Yes."

"But you never told me"

"I must have forgotten."

Well that night I tossed and turned and cried and really it was a terrible night that I spent, not knowing what to do, to leave this man because he believed in Baba or to marry him. But, finally I made a decision and I said, "I will marry him but I will see that he goes the other way and not to Baba."

Well it so happened that Adi and Minoo were quite clever, and in the few months that we had before our wedding they would talk about Baba and listening to them the thought came to me that here are people who had met Baba, who had seen Baba and they told quite a different story than what I had heard as a child. So logic told me that they must be right. In any case, well after a few months our wedding day was fixed. So before I tell you about our wedding day I must tell you about the town from where we come, Karachi.

As I told you, Karachi is surrounded by desert on three sides and one side is the sea. That’s why the climate is quite medium moderate, not very hot. And the rainfall there is about two to three inches a year and mostly in December. So the wedding was fixed for first of July.

You know, because Adi and Minoo had been talking to me about Baba and as I told you, with the logic I said, "There must be something." So one day, sitting in Karachi, I threw a silent challenge to Baba. I said, "If you are what they say you are, you send me heaven’s blessings on my wedding day." By heavens blessings I meant, you know, a sort of a slight drizzle. In our community rain is a good omen, and especially if you have rain on your wedding day it means God is blessing your wedding. And after throwing this challenge I completely forgot about it in the hectic days that followed.

Now it was to be a very grand wedding. First son to get married, expense was no problem and no consideration. 1000 people were invited, money was lavished on decorations. The wedding was to be outside in the beautiful lawns of one of our clubs and so the hectic days followed. Well first of July, that is the wedding day, dawned and it was quite bright and sunny in the morning. The wedding was at about, I think the invitations were at six o'clock, say half an hour before it suddenly grew dark, and without warning it came. It rained cats and dogs. You have no idea how it rained. The whole of Karachi was literally flooded; we had water up to here, waist high. You get the idea when I say out of one thousand people only a hundred and fifty turned up for the wedding. You know the wedding was to be performed by our high priest and when my brother in law went to bring him at his house, he refused to come.

He said, "My house is flooded with water, how can I come for the wedding?" And my brother in law had to literally lift him up to put him in the car. And this priest said that, "I have been here in Karachi for the last 25 years,” and it was always a practice in our community to invite the priest for a wedding and he said, "In the 25 years that I have been here I have never witnessed such a wedding.”

 As a bride, I had on a white sari, but the car was decorated with coloured paper so by the time I got down my white sari had red and green and yellow streaks all over me because of the colours all coming out on me. So, as we were going for the wedding, one of our friends, very dear family friend, was sitting at the back of the car, and my mother was naturally in tears because the whole wedding was ruined.

So she told to my mother, "Why are you crying? God has come to your daughters wedding." Suddenly I woke up. Is it possible? Could it be true? Or is it a coincidence? Well, the minute the wedding ceremony finished, the rain stopped, and I can tell you that in the whole year it didn’t rain a single day. That was the only day it rained. It was in the December of the same year that I met Baba physically for the first time in this life and the only thing that went round in my head was, "You sent heaven's blessings on my wedding day."



The group closes the day after leaving Meherazad for a visit to the Avatar Meher Baba Ahmednagar Centre, which was also Adi K. Iran’s office. There they have refreshments at the Sarosh Canteen before the three hour journey back to Poona.








Monday 19th May



The group arrives at Guruprasad by bus and the clock chimes 9 o’clock.


Eruch welcomes the group.


Mani plays two songs on the sitar.

John Bruford tells jokes and humorous stories.

Alain Youell performs a puppet show.

Jim Miskias plays the sitar.


Paul Smith (reads two poems):



I have seen His hands upon the children

bathe stumps of smiling lepers

eat with the foodpoor of the Universe

converse with smiling mothers

cuddle their babies


I have seen His sandaled feet

move rapidly across a courtyard

instigating the motion of the stars

the awakening of the heart

the swoop of the birds

upon the merging sea.

I have seen His hands

His eyes

His face

speak words

that span Creation

that enflame the heart

until it is agony

to be without Him.

I have sensed His loneliness

and my loneliness

revealed itself to me.




And they laid the body of their Beloved

in the tomb He had ordered

to be built for Him long ago,

and so they gently lowered the body

to which they had given their lives,

given with love because of His love for them.

And He was wrapped

in the colour of their devotion,

and the tears of sorrow

the tears of gratitude


washed his face

embraced the eyes that had held them

for so long,

for so long

He had said

that soon He would drop His body,

and now ...

And now they looked at the cold ice

enclosing Him,

Stood above Him

minds racing

or stunned,

hearts with Him

The evening sun bathed Meherabad

the rising moon kissed their bodies

with sweet tenderness of remembrance,

and many wept.



Singing and dialogue put on by three people from Andhra State in Telegu. Possibly called the Burrakatha Programme, the life of Meher Baba done in words and music.


Eruch (explains the history of Guruprasad.):


This place, Guruprasad, it was built I think some fifty years ago for a Mohammedan family who wanted to live in comfort, and 50 years ago Poona was not so congested, it was a very pleasant place to live in. And people did for his comfort and all that, after some years it seemed that he sold it to one Maharani of Jamkhed and from her one Maharani Shantadevi of Baroda purchased it.


This place is named Guruprasad, Prasad of the Guru, a gift from the Guru. All the furniture that you find and carpets and the place you see today, we find that she has dedicated it all for Baba's cause; it is kept for Baba's disposal.


And the funny story about how Baba came to this place first was that soon as He started His New Life, He sent word to His lovers in Poona to find a place, a suitable place not too far from the city, not too close, having a good atmosphere you see, having a garden or some such thing where He could come with his mandali to stay for some days. So one of the Baba lovers came to this place and it was just locked. Maharani has many properties and this was one of the properties she owned and she would come just once in two years or a year and stay here a week, a fortnight and then go away to her other place dependent upon the season of the year. So when the Poona lover tried to contact the caretaker of the place he said he could not open this place until he has permission from the Maharani herself, so a telegram was sent that Avatar Meher Baba wanted to occupy this place for some days with his disciples and would she permit. So immediately she sent the permission and a bungalow was kept open and then Baba came over here and stayed with His mandali.


Then it so happened that some of the visitors, guests of Maharani would come here. It was also used as the guesthouse for the relatives of the Maharani and unfortunately it so happened, call it fortunately or unfortunately, that while Baba was staying here with the disciples, some guests came and Baba saw it as sort of an intrusion. The Maharani had given this place for Baba and guests were permitted to come so Baba told me to contact the Maharani and inform her that Baba would like to stay here undisturbed. So then she of course diverted her guests to her other properties you see and Baba was permitted to stay here undisturbed.


After that Baba left you see, and when He wanted to occupy it again He made the condition with the Maharani that if she intended to give this property to Baba for His stay then it should be on condition that none of her guests come over here to disturb Baba, and she also must not come even for His darshan. She agreed very lovingly and said that, "Baba can come here any time, stay here any numbers of days or indefinitely," and she would love Baba to stay. So that’s how Baba has been coming to this place now and then, and mostly during the summer months, that is April, May, and June. He would stay here for three months and naturally, after a couple of seasons when He had visited, the Maharani was permitted to come into her own place and have Baba's darshan and just for five minutes.


She came closer and closer to Baba and came to know His ways and all that, so she had informed the caretaker that Baba should not be disturbed in the least and whenever any guests come they should be diverted to other residents and that Baba should not be disturbed. Especially when Baba was in seclusion you see, she would take great care to see that Baba was never disturbed at all. And even when she passes you see through Poona, she would not enter Guruprasad, she would stand outside the gate there for Baba's permission.


And once it so happened Baba was in seclusion, I think year before last, and Baba was here at Guruprasad and we did not know that she was standing under a tree you see there outside the premises. And no one was seen by her; no one was visible to her so that she could call anybody and just ask permission whether she can have Baba's darshan and then pass. Because Baba has told her that whenever she passes through Poona she can come and have Baba's darshan even though He be in seclusion. So, honouring that instruction, she did come but she didn't want Baba to be disturbed so she stayed on for I don’t know how many minutes or hours, but someone spotted her you see and said why she was standing outside. And she said, "I don’t wish to disturb Baba, only if Baba permits I will come, otherwise I will go on my way." Baba lovingly permitted her, and He was very concerned and much touched by her impressive obedience. She loves Baba very much; she keeps this place open for the mandali as well as for Baba.


One time, I remember she didn't have a place because her bungalow was occupied where she lives about a mile from here. It so happened that that place was occupied by children, full of her grandchildren, and Guruprasad was occupied by Baba so she didn't have any place to stay in Poona. So she got a room at the Turf club and stayed there, not encroaching on the privacy of Baba's people even though Baba had told her to come and stay in a room reserved for her, that is Rani's room you see where the telephone is. Oh she loves Baba deeply and her faith for Baba is something to be envied.





The group takes Darshan.


At 11 o’clock the group returns to hotel.




Tuesday 20th May



The group arrives by bus at Guruprasad. Clock chimes at 9 o’clock.


(The group is given an extra, informal day at Guruprasad).


Eruch welcomes the group.


A family of Indian children dancers perform.

Later small groups met with individual mandali members and heard more stories of life with Baba (not recorded).


Eruch (explains the significance of darshan):


What is the significance of the multitudes of people flocking around Meher Baba for his darshan? Is it just to see a person? No, it is not that. There is something in the personality of Baba. Apart from his being man amongst men, he is also the God-Man amongst men.

It is considered to be a great privilege, a great benediction for his being in the midst of men. It is his infinite compassion—God’s infinite compassion—exercised when He wants to mingle with men as man and he comes down amongst us as the God-Man in order that we might feel His being. He makes his being more tangible to us by his presence amongst men as man. He makes his compassion more tangible to us. He makes his love more tangible to us.

The majority of people in the world—whether they accept the existence of God or not—have an inward feeling about the existence of some power; some call him God, some call him Allah and so forth in different languages, but then they have the belief that God exists.

Some look to heaven for his existence and help. Some try to find him in the temples, in the churches, pagodas, mosques and some just try to think of him inwardly. But then they would all want to have something very tangible they cannot have, unless and until through the exercise of God’s own infinite compassion, He manifests Himself as man amongst men and descends to the level of humanity and makes his compassion, his love, his being, his presence more tangible to us.

So men have regarded these manifestations from time immemorial as a dispensation of a great blessing. And when they hear about it and when they feel convinced about it and when they are drawn to his physical presence, naturally they flock around him to have a glimpse of him. That is why people take it to be a great privilege whenever in different Advents he condescends to give his presence to the multitudes.

So they throng around him in large numbers and the reflection of his darshan is seen when they throng around saints and yogis and masts. It is nothing but a reflection in the grossest sense, but the most sublime of it, is thronging around the presence of the God-Man, which we call darshan. Darshan means a glimpse of His physical presence among us.


11 o’clock the group leaves Guruprasad. The group is bid farewell by the mandali to the cry of “Avatar Meher Baba Ki Jai!”


The group left Poona on the 21st of May at about 6pm, to fly to Bombay Airport.


The group was farewelled by Bombay Baba Lovers at Bombay Airport, with singing and a hearty “Avatar Meher Baba Ki Jai!”