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 thatís 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 donít know how many minutes or hours, but someone spotted her you see and said why she was standing outside. And she said, "I donít 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.