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AVATAR MEHER BABA CENTER OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA

to J:gveStreet拢Om January路 March 1996

" MASTERY IN SERVITUDE"

Painting by Charlie Morton


FROM THE EDITOR A Real Lover of God is as a thirsty man under the scorching sun in the desert who values water more than pearls. flesh or diamonds. So also a real Lover of God only thirsts for Him and considers everything else as dust before Him. A Real Lover of God is not after fame, name or wealth. He only yeams for God his beloved. He who does not possess this attitude is full ofselfishness. Avatar Meher Baba 1923

EDITORIAL AMBCSC. A time for more changes has occurred. The editing and production of the Lamp Post has moved back to Los Angeles with this edition. The entire Board of the Avatar Meher Baba Center of Southern California wish to wholeheartedly thank Christina Riley for her superb hard work and professional skills in producing and editing the LampPost these last two years. She has spent hundreds of hours freely and lovingly given in service to our Beloved's cause. We know that it will be very difficult to replace her expertise and would request that our loving and supportive readers bear with us during this change. We have a number of plans for our LampPost, but it may take a few issues before we settle into our new format. We will continue to welcome letters to the editor and definitely wish worldwide contribution for it's contents. Because of a different method of printing, we have changed the size; hopefully it meets with your approval. Our Distribution is now only to those who have firmly stated that they wish to receive it. However, there was an egregious error in the design of the pink cards we sent out to the people who had not returned their original LampPost requests to remain on the mailing list. This was to be their last chance, to make absolutely sure we did not drop someone who really wanted to stay with us, but who had not gotten around to sending such notification in. We have received many of these pink cards back saying "Yes! Please keep me on your mailing list!" But unfortunately they did exactly as the pink card told them: they cut along the dotted line, thereby removing their name and address! So we have no way of knowing from whence cometh these cards! So if you hear any of your friends complaing that they have not received their Love Street LampPost, please tell them to call us, and give us their name and address. We do apologise profusely for this confusion! It was done with the very best of intentions, but 'the plans of mice and men often go astray The magazine has been very lovingly and generously funded by most of those who wish to receive it. Thanks to this, funds are in hand now for a full year of quarterly distribution. We will

slowly expand the readership over the next several years. Letters to the Editor is a very important part of ourl your magazine, so please continue to send your comments and contributions to the Editor, Avatar Meher Baba Center of Southem Califomia, 10808 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, Ca. 90025.


In This Issue Bookstore Editor: Dina Snow Franklin Calendar Editor ( Program Chairperson): Billy Goodrum Children's Corner Editor: Adele Wolkin Poetry Editor: Vicki Warner Art Editor: Prem Makeig Announcements Editor: (yet to be filled) Distribution: Clea Sucoff and Harry Thomas

Features: 2

FROM THE EDITOR

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BABA'S DEAR KATIE VISITS AMERICA B,' 8UJ.Y GOODRUM

Share your artwork, photos, poetry, letters, articles, humor and ideas with us. Please submit your written work on computer disk along with a print-out (we accept 3.5" computer disks only). Or typewrite it , double-spaced, single-sided, on clean, white paper.

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CENTER REPORT

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MAN! SPEAKS ON THE WORTH OF . BY WENDY WARD

DEADLINES: November 15 (Jan.- March issue) February 27 (April - June issue) May 15 (July - Sept. issue) August 15 (Oct. -Dec. issue)

ADDRESS CHANGES / SUBSCRIPTION REQUEST: Clea Sucoff, 3122 Arizona Avenue,#C, Santa Monica.CA 90404 (310) 828-1182.

BOOKSTORE: Dina Franklin, c/o Avatar Meher Baba Center of So. California, 10808 Santa Monica Blvd. Los Angeles,CA 90025 Between 7pm & II pm, phone. (310) 837-6419; or 24-hour fax (310) 839-BABA.

DONATIONS: LampPost Donation, Avatar Meher Baba Center of Southern Cailfornia, 10808 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90025.

WEST COAST MEETINGS In Orange County call Lynne or Steve Berry (714) 966-1262. In the Inland Empire call Jay Mohler (619) 366-9330. In Ojai call Peter Justin (805) 646-4159 (Wednesdays,7;30pm) In Santa Barbara call Donna Karpeles ( 805) 682-1877. In San Diego call Scott or Anne Makeig (619) 436-7155. (monthly) In Fresno call Sharon or Phil Scott at (209) 449-0877. (every first, second and third Wednesday of the month) In San Francisco call Mary Weiss or Peter Ravazza (415) 221-8724 (Wednesdays, 7pm) In Northern California call (510) 845-4339 for full schedule In Portland, call the Wilson's (503) 873-2048. (every Friday night, Discourses meetings every other Sunday afteroon) In Sacramento call Marilyn Buehler at (916) 925-4451. In seattle call Joycerrom Geoffroy (206) 283 -7027. (Fridays ,8 pm)

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DON STEVENS BRINGS WORDS OF WISDOM By BII.I.Y GCXJOItU""'l

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COLLECTION OF MEHER•.. By LINDA ZAVALA

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THE NEW WORLD CULTURE (part 0) BY HARRY THOMAS

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CALENDER OF EVENTS

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CHILDREN'S CORNER

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A BABA NIGHT'S EVE

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BOOKSTORE BY DINA FRANKLI

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1995 SERVICE COMMITTEE REPORT

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YEAR-END PROGRAM REPORT By BllJ.Y GOClORUM

The LoveStreet LampPost keeps Ihe Southern California Avatar Meher Baba Community abreast of Center activrties..along wrth national and international friends; it represents an historical context; and rt provides a forum forcontemporary accounts of life with Meher Baba. as Master and Guide' The LoveStreet LampPost is free, given in the spirrt and with the intention of spreading Avatar Meher Baba's Message of Love and Truth' A publication of the Avatar Meher Baba Center of Southem California. 10B08 Santa Monica Blvd. Los Angeles CA 90025' Published quarterly (January, April, July, October) • All contents © 1995 by the Avatar Meher Baba Center of So. Califomia, except where noted. Call 310 474-9454 for membership information, late-breaking program and events information, a copy of the Bookstore catalog, to get on the mailing list, to receive upcoming Fly-ta-India Sweepstakes tickets or just to say hello.


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BABA'S DEAR KATIE VISITS AMERICA By Billy Goodrum

There is a feeling to be found in the presence of Baba's clo est Lovers that can not be found anywhere else. The Love and energy that emanates from the hearts of the Mandali is truly one of the most splendid wonders in this world. It is what draws so many of us to India time after time, to lay our heads at the Samadhi and visit with those who devoted their lives completely and utterly to Baba and his wishes. To have one of the Mandali visit u here in the U.S. and infuse their Love into our often chaotic lives is indeed a great blessing from Baba. That is exactly what happened in October of this year when Baba's dear Katie Irani came to vi it us. Katie arrived in Los Angeles on October 3, greeted at the airport by a happy, flower bearing, singing (led by Fred Stankus) contingent of Baba Lovers that were clearly ecstatic to ee and greet her. Although tired from a long flight, Katie was all smiles and hugs and happy to ee so many familiar faces. Katie spent the first 12 days of her U.S. visit here in Los Angele . It was a wonderful time of haring in Baba's Love. We were treated to several afternoon and evening teas at Jacko and Becky's home, where Katie was staying. There was also an evening program at the Center on Saturday the 7th. We all had nice opportunities to visit with Katie before she headed up to Mariposa for the fir t New Life Sahavas Program, held 13-16 October at Meherana. At the Sahavas program Katie shared with us her experience of the New Life in which Baba had sent her out to work in the world, Bombay to be exact. With her characteristic eloquence and humor she described to us what it wa like to suddenly be thrust into the workaday world after many years of living and traveling with Baba. It was only after being hired to work at the Japanese Consulate in Bombay did she realize how careful Baba had been to prepare her for the work she encountered. Her day to day experience of the New Life was not so different from what many of us encounter in our daily

lives: rush to the office, work hard all day, come home tired, go to bed and then wake up and do it again. The Sahavas was a beautiful program, full of Baba's Love and humor. After returning to L.A, Katie took one days rest before heading to Mexico City to spend time with the Baba Lovers there. She was hosted by Arsenio and Julie Rodriguiz who made her stay there mo t enjoyable. Aresenio brought some of his colleagues from the United Nations to have dinner and meet Katie and hear about Baba. The word spreads. Katie returned briefly to L.A., resting one day before she traveled to Santa Fe, New Mexico to visit with her cou in Freny and family members Shireen and Jay Bonner. Katie enjoyed her stay and upon returning remarked that Santa Fe reminded her of Ahmednagar: hilly and dusty. Upon her return to the Southland, Katie stayed in the home of Shireen and Mehernou h Lorkalontari. During that weekend, on November 4, was the dinner-auction at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel. Katie attended, very beautiful in her ari, and brought much Love and joy to those who were in attendance. The following week Katie returned to Jacko and

The group enjoys the fruits of their labor (or is it vegetables.,,)


Becky's and gave wonderful talks at the teas there. She had a night on the town on the west side organized by Lois Jones, staying late and closing down the restaurant where they were dining. One of the highlights of Katie's visit was the cooking class held at Michael Ramsden's house on November II. Over twenty five people showed up with cutting boards and knives in hand to participate in this class led by one who cooked for our Beloved Baba. Truly a Master class in cooking. Katie came into the noi y fray and took charge in a most impressive fashion, instructing individuals to prepare vegetables and spices for the dishes and how to properly mix the ingredients. What a treat! Much laughter, many tears (there were lots of onions to cut) and in the end a magnificent Indian feast. That same night Katie gave a lovely talk and led Baba's Arti at the Center. I am amazed at the rigorous schedule she maintained here in Los Angeles. Always wanting to give more and more time and Love to the Baba Lovers here. The next day Sam Ervin and Margaret Magnus gave a very nice tea and Katie delivered one of her joyous and humorous talks. She then, as always, took time to greet and hug everyone in attendance. The energy was very high and spirited that afternoon and everyone enjoyed themselves.

On November 16, Ekaterine McGuire made a special arrangement for Katie to visit Shambala Wildlife Refuge. She was treated to a private tour by actress Tippy Hedron, who is the director of Shambala. Tippy took the time to personally escort Katie around the premi es and show her the lions, tigers, elephants and other animals that are in residence. At a lakeside picnic Katie spoke about Baba and Tippy and her associates took a very keen interest, one man visibly moved to tears. Katie had very pleasant and restful house visits at the homes of Nasarin and Mamoud Ajang in Palos Verdes and at the home of Hardip Chowdri and his family in Orange County. This final week in LA included a tea at Terry Lucas's Rose Cottage as well as a final tea at Jacko and Becky's. Katie' final event was a great Thanksgiving Feast at Meher Mount, organized by Fred and GiGi. It was truly a wonderful time to have Katje here with us. She gave tirelessly to us all. I think that when I am 75 years old myself, I will look back at this time with Katie and the other Mandali as one of the most precious times in my life. It is inspiring and a blessing to be with those who are so much a part of Baba's work of Love in the world. Jai Baba.

Katie held a Cooking class for over 30 people at the home of Michael Rounsden.(She had to inspect 4 kitchens to find one suitable!)


Center Report AVATAR MEHER BABA CENTER OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA YEAR END REPORT As we approach this year end 1995, it is possible to look back on our 21 st year as an incorporated non profit Religious Foundation and just say WOW! What a wonderfully joyful year! Such Loving Blessings from our Beloved Avatar Meher Baba. • Full implementation of Board two year terms. • Continued Progress in the re-organization of Center membership and Board operations. • A highly successful loving Sahavas. • Wonderful worldwide support for the Bookstore sales through the new catalogue and Love Street LampPost. • Some amazing communications with the world wide Meher Baba community through the Love Street LampPost. • Successful and fun and entertaining fund-raising events all year: Spring FlinglFly to Myrtle Beach Sweeps. SahavaslFly to India Sweeps. MehermaslFly to India Sweeps. Hollywood Roosevelt DinnerDance-Auction/Two Yard Sales. • Individual support for many special/specific events. • Amazing programs all year. How fortunate and blessed we were:Leatrice Johnston, Don Stevens, Henry Kashouty, Ella and Peter Marks, Dara and Amrit, Merwan Mehta, Adele Wolkin, Buzz and Wendy, and then our Beloved's Beautiful ambassadors Bhau Kalchuri and Katie Irani.Who can forget those Talks, Teas, Dinners, Potluck Desserts and many intimate moments where our Beloved made Himself most present with us. And then there were our Regular Meetings celebrating His Life and Messages of Love and Truth. • Continued Growth of the New Center Fund with committed participation in the plans to bring the new center to fruition in 1996. • Such incredible support from the membership in love and service to make all the above happen. Which of course only happens because He permits it.

LOOKING TO 1996. There is much to be done. Our current Center needs sprucing up, our archives need a long range plan in keeping with our goals for the future. We need to create a complete inventory of all Center assets. We still need to review all Center policies and procedures, catalogue and index them. Our lending video and audio library are in new hands and their use will grow. We will reach out to many others by expanding our catalogue and Love Street LampPost distribution to those who desire it. All our members will be part of the input and decision making process for the New Center fund drive and purchase. The By-laws will need further changes to nominating committee terms and to finalize the new Board structure. We welcome Kevin Connor to the Board for the first time. He will take over the Finance Directorship. We also welcome back to the board for 1996/7 Dina Franklin, Mehemoush Lorkalantari and Michael Ramsden, who have served many times before. Current Board members who will be completing the 2nd year of their term are; Billy Goodrum, Wendy Ward, Clea Sucoff, Adele Wolkin and Richard Stermer. We want to encourage as many as possible to participate in Center Activity in this Labor Phase of the New Life for the New Humanity. Service in His Cause, that He may work in you and you may keep Him in your heart and mind. SPECIAL THANKS TO our much used telephone treewallahs and wallees - what a job you have done this year. To our mailing wallah in chief, Harry Thomas and to all mailing wallah/ees. You have no idea how much you have meant to Center operations To our LampPost Editor Christina Riley, for her two years of dedicated hard labor editing and producing the LampPost; and to all the contributors and department editors. To Trish Shannon and Janine Johnson for their extra work with Adele for the yard sales not to forget the other workers too! To Mike, Debbie, Chris, Pris, Richard, Joyce, Billy, Greg, Gaye, Rosalee, Maureen, George and all the other singers and performers who shared their love for Avatar Meher Baba with all of us.


"Real happiness lies in making others happy" ______________________ Meher Baba To all the pop-up stage crew who suddenly appear and then disappear without a word of thanks. To Chris Pearson for his 21 years of Sahavas Recording and to Charlie Morton for his 21 years of recording over 500 special events. To Linda Zavala for her continued support of the Archive and the Auction and to all those other auction wallah/ees. To Fred and Jeff who need no further introduction for keeping us smiling at Sahavas and Auctions and many other places too. To Kanji Miyao for stepping in this year to take over the Treasurer's job and to Karina Page for accepting responsibility for our new fund investments. To Rose Choi for her help with the bookstore books and finances To Rocky Rodgers for updating our By-laws and Articles of Incorporation and e pecially to Rob Ward for so much background work for the board and fundraising in particular. To Larry Fletcher for his many years of labor, setting up and running our fir t video and audio lending library. To the whole Sahavas Committee and especially to David McNeely for his Sahavas Treasury role these past many years. To Rosalee Dunphy for continuing to be a plendid caretaker who graciou Iy greets new and old

comers alike. To our perennial host Jacko for once again hosting a Mandali member. To Becky Caraco for joining in the cause and to Jacko' mom Dora for allowing all the talks and teas, pool parties and pot-lucks at her home. And to all the other hosts and haste ses in Los Angeles: Shirin and Mehemoush, Nasrin and Mahmoud, Lyn and Jeff, Hardip, Lois and any others not mentioned. It's incredible how our Beloved ha drawn so many together to labor this last year at His Center And this is not all by any means! - Clean-up and set-up crew, on the spot volunteer, performer - unseen but giving of themselves and their love for Meher Baba. And finally a thank you to this year Board; Adele, Clea, Dina, Donna, Loi , Wendy, Billy, Richard and Michael. Have another great year in His Love.

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Avatar Meher Baba Ki Jai.

FROM: DISCOURSES BY MEHER BABA The emergence of higher love from the shell of lower love is helped by the constant exercise of discrimination. Therefore, love has to be carefully distinguished from the obstructive factors of infatuation, lust, greed and anger. In infatuation, the person is a passive victim of the spell of conceived attraction for the object. There is an active appreciation of the intrinsic worth of the object of love.

Katie speaks to an authralled crowd at one of her many talks at our center.


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MANI SPEAKS ON THE WORTH OF BELOVED BABA'S PERSONAL ITEMS I recently had the opportunity to ask Mani a question that I feel is of great importance to posterity. Mani chose to answer this question in Mandali Hall, while it was being tape recorded. The following text is an excerpted transcript of that discussion by Mani on 9 September 1995, on the topic of the proper disposition of Baba's personal items. Mani gave a beautiful talk with many lovely anecdotes of life with Baba. This transcript does not contain her entire talk, and has been edited due to space limitations in The Love Street LampPost. In addition, the quality of the tape recording made it difficult to understand a few words during her talk. Rather than misinterpret her, I chose to remove those statements which contained words that were inaudible. I have endeavored to leave nothing out that was necessary to convey her message. All words here are Mani's, with the exception of a few which are enclosed in brackets, and these are to clarify the context when a previous inaudible sentence had been removed. - Wendy Ward -

Wendy: There was an issue that came up recently at the L.A. Center. We have an auction each year to help raise money for the Center. I was calling around, asking people if they would like to donate. People donate things from services, to little items that they have at home or little treasures. This one particular person offered a very loving gift, which was, well, it's a pretty incredible gift, that put questions in our minds about whether things like this should be auctioned, and what should be done with it. This was a gift to help the center, but it was Baba s hair; seven strands of Baba's beautiful hair. There was naturally a lot of questions that came up about what we hould do with this. The idea of auctioning Baba's hair, of treating part of Baba's body this way, raises questions. If that were auctioned to raise money for the Center, should it be given to the highest bidder? That hardly seems right either. So then the question came up as to whether or not it could be a sweepstake, so that Baba would choose who would get this gift, and still there would be some help for the Center. But it all boils down to, for a lot of people, whether any item like this should ever be dealt with in this way; I mean, it's Baba's. Mani: I'm very happy you asked that question. I'm happy it has come up. I feel also, once again, it is Baba who has brought this up. Because there can be variations of the same question, that are bound to come up later on, and you might not be sure and there would be, you know, arguments, and discussions, and trying to figure out what we had said and what it wasn't, you see. And my question, then, this is a question from me, that you are asking

about Baba's hair, a part of Baba's person. It's good that the questions have come up from each one, that you haven't totally accepted the fact, O.K., so this is what we'll do, it's for the highest motive, I agree. We all agree. You know, this is for Baba's work. One then has to look at it from that angle. And the first person who comes to mind as I mull over this question, trying to give you an honest and unbiased answer, because I have not faced myself with this question before (it hasn't come up), and that is Mehera. What would Mehera's reaction be? What would Mehera think of that? And from Mehera, every time, when she gave a strand of Baba's hair to anybody, I would be immovable, just watching Mehera. Interaction, with not only the person, whom she was giving the hair to, but with the hair, itself. With Baba. And the way she would hold it, the way she would say a few words before she gave it. And then when she put it in their hand, she would usually also have her hand over it. And tell them how very, very precious and PRICELESS it is. And then she would tell how, when she was a child, and her father had taken her to the, now I don't remember names, so I'm not going to go into the names in case I'm wrong, but in this mosque, a place where the worship of one hair of the prophet Mohammed, one strand of the prophet Mohammed's hair, it wa placed. And there these caretakers of the hair, the devoted ones, would stand around this construction, this structure, and wave peacock feathers, with such reverence, with such love, with such care, and incense burning, and chanting, and this is for one hair, after all these years. And honestly, when one is there one thinks, is it really about Mohammed's hair. There's not a question of doubting, but I'm talking about the number of years that have gone after that precious item. And then, they open the thing, and there is a beautiful silver casket, and you stand around in awe. And they open that, the lid of that, and there's another smaller one, casket, in there. And you open that and there's a box, a silver box. And they open that, and all along, while they open it, as a very special gesture for you, it's with prayers, with incense. And so she, she would tell them, don't take it


naturally. Don't take it for granted, what you're holding, in your hand. You have the good fortune to receive it, please, do you realize, how precious, how PRICELESS it is? So, every time when Mehera gave, whether it was one of our Indian or western sisters, or brothers, I would just watch. For me, the importance of the hair was reflected through what Mehera said, how Mehera looked, how Mehera handled. She would also tell people, if you are going to use that hair, in a locket, if you're removing that hair from the cover, which says 'Beloved Avatar Meher Baba's hair,' if you take out the little plastic bag from in there, please what you have to do is, first of all, wash your hands, clean, pure, put a white cloth down (that was when the hair was darker; later when Baba's hair was more gray; any color that shows up the hair), and then remove it [Baba's hair].

which contained a hair from beloved Baba's head. So she says: Jai Baba, Mani dearest. Charlie Morton said last night that Mani would love to hear this, so here goes. Pitch black. Pelt melt. Everything down. Only God knows where the contents of the night table's drawers are. I ask Baba's help,Jor .finding the little flashlight, with fingertips gingerly feeling around the floor. The first thing felt was the little cardboard box containing a bit ofBaba 50 hair. Exit earthquake. Earthquake stop. It is an indescribable, timeless moment. So loving, so powerful. So speechless with wonder. In His love. Then, she quotes Rabindranath Tagore, who translated the Songs of Kabir, "One hair of his body is worth billions of suns." So what price do you put on that? I have also worked on it with Mehera, along with And somehow I was so struck by it; it's like Baba has Mehera, when we would make these curls of Baba's hair, provided this for this moment, for this question. Because from combings, or broaches, and little hair clips. She I love this so much, I made a copy of it and put it by where it might be handy. made a hair clip for me, I made a broach for her, we made it for others, all that; the total absorption, it surAnything belonging to Baba's person. A tooth. passes any meditation that you can think of. When Baba You know, there is a whole stuppa, a beautiful stuppa, would be away in the West and we'd be doing this, He'd with one tooth of the Buddha in it. So that's what I mean gone to Canada, He'd gone to the United States, there we to say is, hair, tooth, nails, al1 these have no price, even were in our cloistered life, and that absorption struck me though I like, I love the motive[for the raffling of His more than anything else. That somehow rang the true hair], I know what's prompted it, but it is not right. It is not right. Never for that. value, the true good fortune, the destiny, that we were handling. Ah! You can, if someone has done something, in .----J.... - - . the cause of Baba, in a big All that comes to mind, when this question Mani: That's, that's an object, touched by Baba. way or in a deep way, and comes to mind. So, another you have been touched by it, You know, not something belonging to Baba. L.......,.... ----I you do give. I have given. question comes is, when you I've given. But I've also given along with it a responsireceive a hair, what value is it to you? How is it a result bility. But I think that there should never be a, this is a of a real longing? That's why now, if somebody asks for hair, I ask them to ask next time. And see how much the chance, isn't it? A raffle is a chance. Come really down longing grows. to terms. And none of Baba's things [should ever be left to chance]. Baba says My center is in the hearts of My So then, another thing about the hair thing, lovers, which is why an outer center is made. You don't before I tell you about the answer to your, there was a need money for My center, you can sit under a tree, and letter from Marguerite Poley, an old-time Baba lover in just talk of Baba. That's true. But now that His lovers are growing, He's making it very clear to us that He has to L.A. During the time when there was an earthquake in house them, to be together. "Where My lovers gather L.A., and you know it was pitch black, and in a few seconds everything was topsy-turvy. Normal life was, no together, I am there." So all that is fine. There is nothing longer anything was normal. It was pitch dark in the that is objected anywhere else. Except that hair, and tooth, night, and the lights had gone out, and Marguerite was and nail ... A signed book,all right, all right, I guess. on the floor, on her knees, groping for a flashlight, a torch Wendy: A photo Baba touched, or something like that? as we say. And while she was groping, the side table also fell down with a crash, but she couldn't lay her hand on continued on page 12 the flashlight. She didn't. She laid her hand on a box


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DON STEVENS BRINGS WORDS OF WISDOM By Billy Goodrum

I wa extremely excited when I learned that Don anything to do with. Don very generously and happily Stevens was going to be paying a vi it to the Los Angeles signed book for everyone, never seeming to tire of the Center. My first contact with Meher Baba was through line of people and mountain of books. the book Listen Humanity, which Don narrated. It has On each of the nights (Sept. 7 and 8), the book been ten years since reading the book that brought Baba signings were precursors to group meetings with Don. At into my life; yet I had not had the opportunity to meet the first nights meeting, Don covered three main topics. He began by giving us an update on the Don. I learned through my conversations with other Baba Lovers and corresponEuropean groups activitie , where he i dence with Don, that Listen Humanity has so closely connected. The second topic was on the importance of Baba's words. functioned as an introduction to Baba for many, many people. Who could be more qualified than Don If there is such a thing, Don Stevens to share insights into Baba's words and would most likely be considered the writings? He recounted how Baba foremost scholar of Meher Baba's writspecifically stressed to him the utmost ings. After meeting and spending time importance of reading and studying with Baba, Don, along with Ivy Duce, Baba's words, in particular GOD edited GOD SPEAKS. He compiled the SPEAKS. Mandali's stories of the New Life for a The third topic was Baba in our volume on that phase of Baba's work. He daily lives. Don hared three very often worked with Baba on other literary beautiful and per onal stories of hi projects and has also completed four experiences with Baba. I will not books of his own, the most recent being attempt to paraphrase the first two stories SOME RESULTS. Mind you, all of this as they deserve a more detailed descripactivity was sandwiched in with a deDon led a very interesting & thought provoking tion than this article permit . I believe discussion. Wish he was here more often! the gist can be found throughout Don's manding career a an executive in the international petroleum industry, as well as leading writings, perhap even in full detail. Meher Baba groups throughout Europe. The third story; however, was profound and moving Given the scope of Don's literary output and the timing and Don told it with perfect detail. He explained how, for the first twenty four hours after Baba's death, Meher Baba surrounded him with numerous happenings, charged with his highly characteristic flavor and ense of humor. The e incidents indelibly established the fact of Baba's continuing pre ence in Don's life. The second nights meeting was a discussion group on a list of topics selected by Don. Having never experienced one of Don's di cussions I was amazed, at the ease in which he guided the conversation and pushed us past superficial thoughts and knee-jerk response . His knowledge and mastery of Baba's writings became immediately clear. It was not, however, a mere intellectual understanding, but an understanding balanced with strong intuition and heart. Don is one of the pillars of Baba's work. He generOur program walla, Billy Goodrum shows his very first Baba book "Listen Humanity" certainly look well read! ously devotes himself to spreading Baba's message of Love. At his own expense he travel around the world of his trip to coincide with the release of his latest book, sharing his experience of being in Baba's presence, the book signing at the Center were a rousing success. Not only did our bookstore sellout of SOME RESULTS, we sold out of almo t every other book that Don had

I continued on next page


WORDS OF WISDOM creating wonderful events like the ones held on these two nights in Los Angeles. We thank Don for his visit and the Love and energy that he brought to us. Jai Baba.

YOU ARE THE MOST BEAUTIFUL AMONG THE BEAUTIFUL There are many beautiful ones in this world, but none are as divine as You. Tulips signify the beginning of spring, and You my beloved are a tulip who blooms all year long. None steals hearts like You, with one glance as You do. It's not just me, the whole world says: You are the most beautiful among the beautiful The waves in Your hair is not comparable to the sea's, the grace of Your face can't be found in desert calm. The softness of Your eyes, the compassion of Your smiles, are unmatched to the loveliness of the morning dawn. None steals hearts like You, with one glance as You do. It's not just me, the whole world says: You are the most beautiful among the beautiful

Sales of all of Don's books were very brisk in the Bookstore that night - especially for his latest one' Some results '.

Author Unkown


MANI SPEAKS ON THE WORTH OF BELOVED BABA'S PERSONAL ITEMS continued from page 9 Mani: That's, that's an object, touched by Baba. You know, not something belonging to Baba. I, I would hesitate, even with a sadra. A sadra can pass around. Loaned. So that everybody has a chance. You know, sometimes we must, we are apt to put Baba's work above Baba. Let's never make that mistake. Everything has a place; everything has a time. And He wants it, obviously; otherwise there wouldn't be that urge, that enthusiasm, that wish to do it.[His work]. That's fine, and He's directing, let's not think that we're thinking, or you're thinking. He's doing it, He's directing it, He wants it. When He wants it, He makes it very clear. I love the Sufi saying when they say, "When He wants you to ride, he will provide you with a horse." But certain things it is good to have clear in one's mind, that these things are never at any time to be auctioned, or raffled, anything belonging [to Him] what will happen later? You know, Meherabad for us for many years has been a place where we have stored Baba's precious things. Sadras, sheets used by Him, pillowcases. And one day, there it was, I still remember, a square glass case in which we would stuff Baba's sadra, because there were more than could fit in. You know, Mehera would kiss it and fold it and then push it. Now it was getting rather tight. So she asked Baba, she said, "Baba, do we still have to go on, continue, keeping your sadras in Meherazad? " She thought if Baba said no, then we can use it for other things, for little curtains, or anything, you know. And you know, Baba said something very seriously. That again also surprised me, because it was a moment that stood still. Baba said, "Yes, yes, yes, yes; keep. Keep.

Later on, for a piece of My sadra, they will fight." So, what we have learned, this has been instinctive, natural with us. Because, as I said, I've seen Mehera handle Baba's items, I've learned a lot of these things from Mehera. I've loved Baba always, from the cradle. But there are many ways of loving. And how to love Baba, I have learned to love Him. I've seen Mehera prepare a drink of water for Baba, drinking; a glass of drinking water; I've been amazed, you know? What is it? What's the big deal about preparing a glass of water and giving it to Baba? Not Mehera. I think if you talked to her at that time, she wouldn't have heard you. The glass was washed, just so. It had to have this particular thin soap. Then she had to wash her hands with that soap, and then this pure white muslin cloth which she had folded and put in this particular cupboard would come out, dampen it, and wrap around that glass, so it's the right temperature. I tell you, once Baba had said to her, long ago, "What is this, the water smells of garlic." She was shocked. She had given a glass of water for Baba to drink, with the smell of garlic. She stopped peeling garlic from that day on. Never by mistake, should ever, His water smell of garlic. She stopped. She cooked, she did everything, but the garlic had to be done by somebody else. There are many levels, there are levels of loving, there are levels of serving. But you should have a place[for Baba], in whatever you work, whatever you earn, whatever you enjoy; whatever! He must never be left out. He must never be out standing the kitchen door. He must be in. He will be, but you must always invite him. And there's many ways that that can be arranged.

COLLECTION OF MEHER STORIES... At Mehera's birthday time the inspiration came to begin collecting Mehera stories to be used for sharing at Mehera oriented programs and teas or just to read once in a while. So this is where you come in. Does anyone out there have a story, a dream, a poem, a vision of Mehera that you would like to share with the Baba community? Please send it to me and I will type it, and begin compiling into a booklet to be shared with whoever requests a copy. Over time, who knows, it may even become a book. Enclose your story, your address and phone number.

brief time so they could be copied. So do you have a favorite slide of Mehera you would be willing to share? Here's how: I. Send a duplicate, 2. Have an intemegative made and send it 3. If you can part with the slide, I will pay the cost for the internegative and new slide. With prints, you could send a photocopy first for consideration or send your negative or a copy. I know most of you don't want to part with your personal photos but I will be happy to work with you on this. Let's make something happen! Please Respond:

COLLECTION OF MEHERA SLIDES... I have already started a slide collection of Mehera through the generosity of others who were willing to part with their slides for a

Dr. Linda Zavala 195 So. Oak Ave. Pasadena, Ca. 91107 818.975.8322


~.~.*G~.~.*G~.~.*G~.~.*G$.~. PART" OF

The Nevv World Culture

Harry Thomas

* Please Note - InPart 1 , a sentence error was made. On page 9, paragraph I, line 6, it read "And, let us ponder <world> exploration and settlement." World should be amended to off-world; as in outer space - atfirst interplanetary, then later, intergalactic.

Intro: Part I ended with three options for new economic system. I) Our present one reformed. 2) A new economic system but one still employing currency. 3) A new system also, but one without currency. Let us examine all three systems in greater detail. Our present economic system is corrupted. This is glaringly true when you examine third world conditions, especially in Africa and parts of Asia and Latin America, where machinations at high international business and governmental levels, by means of economic directives, are responsible for their plight. Given the degree of corruption suffused through the system, one might wonder if reform is desirable, or even possible. Major structural and psychological adjustments would be needed for this present system to accommodate a New World Culture. The question can legitimately be asked, w01lld a fervent reform effort be worth it? Which leads us to considering Option #2. This would be a totally new, currency based economic system. It would be designed to either eliminate or greatly reduce constant fluctuation in the marketplace and in financial sectors. This would greatly ease peoples mental states. It could also be designed to guarantee that exploitative measures aren't enacted against the populace. For history has informed us, He who controls the coins, controls the crowds. Discussing the currency, it undoubtedly would be backed by a precious metal, preferably gold at a fixed price, and there would be an equal ratio between the note value of that currency and its worth in gold. In this economy, people would be paid fairly and everyone's prosperity would be insured by the solid integrity of this system aided by a team of altruistic managers who would distribute the world's wealth equitably. In this economy, there would be no money worries, manipulations, leveraged tactics and the like. It would be a system aligned to a spirit of generosity and inclusive goodness. Numerous contentions might arise, for example,

would there be a host of differing currencies, or a singular world currency? If the move is toward a world currency, will this necessitate a central bank? Which country or countries will stock the gold? Who will design the currency notes and establish its value? If there's to be multiple currencies, then a cultural dimension enters the picture. Like flags and anthems, currency is an external aspect of a nation's culture, hence, it fosters nationalistic thinking. Also, if there are variegated currencies, will one dominate, reminiscent of todays dollar? Will some be stronger than others, like the deutsche mark and yen? And if so, doesn't this perpetuate a ranking mentality since national prestige is often tied to the strength of one's currency? There are also possible difficulties owing entirely to the mathematical nature of money. The prominent one being, the reenactment of many of todays number games; interest rates, valuations, insurance policies, trading tables, shifting prices, inflation, investments, speculation, banks, tax brackets and a sundry of economic terms and potential realities. Also, currency being a mathematical construct, by entering onto the path of numeration which $1 would commence, one's consciousness is propelled into a mathematical continuum. Beckoned onward by the siren call for a successive accumulation of wealth, this practice could well be resurrected. A currency system would necessitate a branch of the citizenry who's occupation would maintain the operation as well as people involved with other aspects of this system. As citizens, we'd be required to carry money, or credit cards, which adds an encumbrance to

continued on page 26


CALENDER OF EVENTS January 6, Saturday 6pm FARSI LANGUAGE MEETING

February 10, Saturday 8pm GUTTA NIGHT

This meeting is devoted to discussion of Beloved Baba. All are welcome. Coordinated by Dr. Mamoud Ajang.

Come to Fred Stankus' famous Gutta night meeting for an evening of food, fun, high spirited humor and friends all focused on Beloved Baba.

January 6, 8pm NEW YEARS ARTI We will begin the New Year with Baba's Prayers, songs of devotion to the Beloved and a film. All musicians are encouraged to participate. Please bring refreshments to share afterwards.

January 13, Saturday 8pm CONCERT WITH CINDY LOWE Tonight Cindy Lowe will be here from the Bay area to entertain us with music from her new album "After All This Time" as well as old favorites including her beautiful adaptation of The Beloved God prayer. The new album will be available in the Bookstore.

January 20, Saturday 6pm FARSI LANGUAGE MEETING

February 17, Saturday 6pm FARSI LANGUAGE MEETING This meeting is devoted to discussion to Beloved Baba. All are welcome. Coordinated by Dr. Mamoud Ajang.

February 17, Saturday 8pm FILM NIGHT Come and behold Baba's radiant form on film. Hosted by our film-walla Charlie Morton.

February 24, Saturday 8pm BELOVED BABA'S BIRTHDAY Come for a night of celebration and devotion on the eve of Baba's Birthaday.

This meeting is devoted to the discussion of Beloved Baba. Coordinated by Dr. Mamoud Ajang.

February 25, Sunday AVATAR MEHER BABA'S BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION

January 20, Saturday 8pm KEEPING ABREAST WITH BABA

Today we celebrate the birthday of our Beloved Baba, with music, dance and stories. Time and location to be announced. Contact Linda Zavala to volunteer and participate.

Trisch Shannon shares with us her holistic healing path with Oriental medicine and the latest western research on cancer. Overcoming health problems with Baba's guidance and practical solutions.

January 27, Saturday 8pm FILM NIGHT How very fortunate we are that Beloved Baba has given us so many beautiful films of himself in the physical form. Tonight Charlie Morton will show some of our favorites.

January 31, Wednesday 8pm AMARTITHI Tonight we observe the anniversary of the day our Beloved Avatar Meher Baba dropped his body in 1969. Hosted by Lois Jones and Tamara Mark.

February 3, Saturday 6pm FARSI LANGUAGE MEETING This program is focused on and dedicated to Beloved Baba. All are welcome. Coordinated by Dr. Mamoud Ajang.

February 3, Saturday 8pm HIGHER TRIVIAL PURSUIT What was Mehera's favorite color? What movie did Baba say he'd like to see 7 times? Test your Baba knowledge tonight as Jeff Maguire hosts an old favorite.

March 2, Saturday 6pm FARSI LANGUAGE MEETING This meeting is devoted to discussion of Beloved Baba. All are welcome. Coordinated by Dr. Mamoud Ajang.

March 2, Saturday 8pm BABA'S ARTI Tonight we will perform Baba's Arti with Baba's prayers, songs of devotion and a film. Musicians are encouraged to participate. Please bring refreshments to share afterwards.

March 9, Saturday 8pm MASTERY IN SERVITUDE Tonight we will focus on and discuss Bhau's latest book Mastery In Servitude. Hosted by Michael Ramsden.

March 16, Saturday 6pm FARSI LANGUAGE MEETING This meeting is devoted to discussion of Beloved Baba. All are welcome. Coordinated by Dr. Mamoud Ajang.

March 16, Saturday 8pm ADELE'S ARCHIVES Over her long and intimate relationship with Meher Baba and his Mandali our dear Adele has amassed a vast collection of archives. Tonight she shares with us some of these treasures.


March 23, Saturday 8pm FILM NIGHT Come and ee films of our Beloved Avatar. Hosted by our trusted film-walla Charlie Morton.

March 30, Saturday 6pm FARSI LANGUAGE MEETING This meeting is devoted to discussion of Beloved Saba. All are welcome. Coordinated by Dr. Mamoud Ajang.

March 30, Saturday 8pm FARSI NEW YEAR CELEBRATION Tonight Mehernoush Lorkalontari will host a traditional Farsi New Year Celebration. This is always a treat and not to be missed.

With tread soft as moonlight You enter my heart, illumining my pain and ignorance, but gently so as not to blind my naked eyes. Truth is crystal clear in this world of shadows but it comes in small sips for You alone know how much, or how little, my heart can hold. In Your silent way You force nothing on me, only offering, little by little with infinite patience and love; Your hand ever outstretched so that one day I may grasp it and see the Sun.

0, Beloved Moon! Until that morning when the Sun rises don't let the clouds hide Your beautiful face from me! Baba picked strong women in more ways than one! seen here are Kitty Davey and Margaret Craske, taken in Nasik 1936

Please see Bookstore article

Simon Reece

Please see Bookstore article


.~~*G~.~~*G~.~.*G~.~.*G~.~~*G

CHILDREN1S CORNER Your Song Children, Children, sing a song, "Saba, Saba," all day long You can sing it in your heart. "Saba, Saba," let us start. Now a bird is singing too, "Saba, Saba, I love you," A little breeze just whistled by, "I want you aLL to be happy"

"Saba, Saba, here am I"

Meher Baba

BABA IS HONEY FOR THE WORLD

Love your daddy! Love your mommie! Saba wants you PAGE 16

Sweet as honey


Saba's Garden of Love Did you plant a seed of Love to-day upon this planet earth? Did you water it with kindness, Good thoughts to give it birth? God chose you for this very task And needs us, everyone! You can make His garden grow For love is like the sun. HOW DO THEY MANAGE WITH ONLY TWO LEGS?

If you were a rock You could not walk. Friend Cat

If you were a flower

Love your friend the

You could live on a stalk.

pussy cat,

If you were a fish

Love to stroke his

You could not talk.

Furry head.

If you were a bird

Saba feels your gentle touch,

You could be a hawk.

f THOUGHT

ONLY PEOPLE LOVE THEMSELVES

"

\

/

"

\

Kitty purrs instead. I LOVE YOU EVEN IF YOU DON'T WIN ACAT SHOW

If you were an animal

\

\

,

.. ",', , I \ '

You could live in a zoo. If you are smart, you are happy, Because you are you!

'/

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~.~~*G~.~~*G~.~.*G~.~.*G~.~~*4

IIA BABA NIGHT1S EVE II DIN ER/ DANCE. ..Was held at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel This year we met in the very room and mezzanine area where Baba greeted many new lovers for the first time July 31 through Aug. I, 1956. The evening began with a silent auction, a lovely catered dinner and then the real excitement began to mount when our very own Bobby Manonash and Ed McMaya started the bidding for the live auction. Some of the special items were: a test pressing album by Peter Townshend dedicated to Baba entitled "Happy Birthday". Books autographed by the Mandali, Laker's VIP seats, L.A. Eyeworks really trendy eyeglasses with sunglass clip. A lovely head culpture of Baba by Jurgis, an out of print edition of "Not We But One" which had many handwritten messages with autographs by the Mandali, a rare and very lovely black and white photo of Baba and Mehera together in the early days donated by Meheru, ans a video tour of many Baba sites in India. Also, seat to the upcoming Academy Award with a special male gentleman escort and finally many talented people in the health field contributed their servIces. We were very honored to have Ms. Katie Irani with us and special out of town guests; Bill and Diana LePage and Jane Brown. One of the guests commented it wa fun, joyful, humorou and delicious. Adding to the upbeat quality of the evening were those Baba "boys" who sported tuxedo's looking ever so handsome and Baba's "girls" wearing glittery evening wear. It made one think of Baba's birthday at the Delmonico Hotel in the 50's when everyone was dressed to the "nine's" in anticipation of being with Baba. And, yes, Baba was palpably present this evening. After the auction The "Om Boys" entertained u with their very rhythmic and lively dance tunes. Jane Brown and Debbie Ashe sang while we danced. The PH~I<

III

Grand Prize Drawing, a flight to Meher Spiritual Center, was won by Ms. Tracy Bleahu of Pacific Palisade . This will be Tracy's first opportunity to visit Baba's home in the west. This was the most successful Auction fundraiser the Center has had to date. And, of course, it was only possible with Baba's Grace and His loving presence, the many helping hands great ideas, creative bursts of energy, and just a little touch of gladly given slave labor for the One in the Many. Chairwoman Wendy Ward, with assistance from Mike Ramsden, Rob Ward, Karina Page,

Visiting from Avatar's, abode are Bill and Diana LePage seen here with Katie Irani and Michael Ramsden

Lois Jones, Rose Choi, Dina Franklin, Clea Sucoff, Billy Goodrum and Linda Zavala rounded out the core group of Baba wallas. Drawn by Shawdi Manouchehrpour, Wendy announces the winner of the grand door prize: the trip to myrtle Beach spiritual Center goes to Tracy Bleahu


Jane Brown, singer extraordinaire, flew in from Myrtle Beach.

Our Bookstore walli takes a break from the wild and crazy dancing to sit with a friend... (one of Baba's favorites)

Dancing the night away capped off a memorable night.

i

Wendy Ward - chairwomen and chief slave and organizer of this fabulous event, stops for a moment to pose with Shireen Lorkalantari, Katie and Michael


~.~~*G~.~.*G~.~.*G~.~.*G~.~~*

Jai Saba and welcome to the Bookstore! I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and Hanukkah. I hope my being in Australia for December did not inconvenience any of you, or disrupt your Baba gift giving plans. With this LampPost following so closely on the heels of the last very overdue issue, you may think we have nothing much new to tell you. Not so! There is always something happening in the Baba world. Let me start with two new albums that were placed in my hands two days ago....they have been on the 'continuous play' of my tape deck ever since! How to describe them is a difficulty! Each track is different, a different kind of music. Do you like Gregorian chants? Then you'll love it, but it's not Gregorian chants....do you like listening to Whale song? Then you'll love it, but it's not whale song. There is some flamenco, great acoustic guitar, some tracks that sound some what Middle Eastern, perhaps the meuzzin's calling the faithful to prayer; then there is the Romanza, a classical Spanish composition, perhaps the most beautiful piece of music in the world under the name of Anonymous. Listening to this in a room with candlelight, I feel I can see souls ascending to heaven. 'Hyperbole', you say? Don't take my word for it, do yourself a favor, buy this, or these tapes and see for yourself. In fact, I am so taken with this music, and feel it is so different (but comfortingly, faintly familiar,) to anything I have heard before, that I will cheerfully refund your money if you wish to return the tape, telling me you did not care for it. So what is it you say? The musician, composer, singer and producer is an Englishman by the name of Simon Reece. The PAGE20

instruments he employs to great effect include Classical and 12 string guitars, Santoor, Cello, Sitar, Ramuntar, Tuned copper chimes, Tampura (I thought that was something you ate?!) Rain stick, Bottles "and other bits." He also thanks the birds at Meherabad. I had forgotten how incredibly loud, varied, and beautiful they sound. It is as though as many birds as possible assemble around the Samadhi and the Pilgrim Center to sing the praises of our Beloved. Hearing them on this tape will take you right back there. Sun and Moon has two songs that Simon sings with words, The Gujerati Arti, words by Meher Baba and I will fly to you, words by Mehera. On the other tracks, those that have vocals, they are just that, vocals, no words. And a beautiful ethereal sound it is. On the jacket is a poem Simon wrote that is so close to the way I feel, it brought chills to me. (See box) Echoes of the Infinite features a stunning full colour photograph Simon took of a temple at sunrise reflected in the water, at Jaisalmeer in Rajasthan on the cover and is dedicated: "Por the Eternal Love of Meher Baba." Simon recorded this album at the Vigeland Mausoleum in Oslo Norway, and says "The incredible acoustics of the towering chamber produce a sense of space and timelessness which is almost not of this world." As a musician, he says, "merely playing and singing in this sublime environment awakens unfathomable inspiration./I What Simon was feeling certainly comes through to the listener. These recordings were made with just one microphone and nothing was added afterward to enhance the sound. Most musicians would spend thousands to get


this sound from a commercial studio! The tape eating continually you will get indigestion! starts with three Jai Babas echoing in the cham- Before you go to bed say 'Baba I entrust to the ber. Lord all that I did, thought or spoke, good and The optimal way to listen to these two tapes is bad, to you.' When you get up, say 'Baba I now in a tranquil setting, begin entrusting all (no children running thoughts, words and screaming through the deeds to you.' Say this just twice each day for house!) soft lights, and five minutes, but with candles. Be prepared to be totally transported all your heart in it. Do that, and make Me to another realm. They are $10 each. responsible for all you I loved Mark do or think. Then you Trichka's review of Buz are free ....but you must Connor's The Glory of do it honestly. This Mehernoush LorkaJantri admiring much will be more than Love, but there was a the huge selection of' Baba Goodies' mistake in the pricing: sufficient to maintain the cost of the tape is the contact with Me. I $12.....unfortunately no one can afford to proam the ocean. I can accept both flowers, coconuts and also filth. So throw everything in the duce a tape for $5.95....maybe in the Seventies..... Ocean with all your heart. This is a great thing . Another correction: Direct Cinema, the if done wholeheartedly, otherwise it goes in distributors for the documentary Meher Baba the your own pool of water which gets filthy beAwakener have cause of your dirt." The changed the price from book is full of gems like $25 to $30 (but it's still that. $20....when it's available! cheaper than its original price!) A number of you The newly 'arts and crafts people' released book I told have bemoaned the absence of the little you about in our last stick-on photos of Baba issue, Much Love, by T.K. Ramanujan, has a we used to get from Joy beautiful passage on Meher. I found out that page 209 I wanted to Fuji film no longer share with you: produces that product, One of Baba's lovers and no other filmcomhad asked Him how he could retain constant pany has come up with that format. If anyone contact with Him. To the lover Baba replied, hears about such a product, please let me know. "Do you feel constantly hungry? When you feel But to fill in the gap I have made available an hungry you take food, and then you forget 8x10 sheet of miniature black and white photos about the food. So work for me in such a way of Baba, each one is one by one and a half inch that you feel hungry for me. Sometimes think of or smaller. These are for the very creative Me, sometimes work for Me, sometimes talk continue on the next page about Me, but not all the time. If you go on


Jai Saba and welcome to the Bookstore! Continued from page 21

people who weave beads or embroidery around them, or put them into various brooches. They are $8 per sheet with about 36 usable pictures on it. As many of you know, the Bookstore carries back issues of that wonderful magazine Fills Frederick produced for Baba starting way back in the Fifties. We have quite a few copies of two of the most popular editions: Baba in Hollywood and Women of the West. Baba in Hollywood is Volume XVIII1 and chronicles in detail the many people and places Baba visited when He was here in 1932, '34 and '56. Did you know, for instance, that Mary Pickford was so taken with Baba that she and her husband Douglas Fairbanks threw Him a great party at their magnificent home 'Pickfair'. Years later, in the Fifties, Adele Wolkin was visiting a Veteran's hospital in the Bronx. There she met Mary, who was also visiting with her husband, Buddy Rogers. Adele asked Mary if she remembered Meher Baba. "Qh of course", the famous star replied, "He was a most wonderful man!" In the Forties, Norina Matchabelli met Talullah Bankhead at some function. Talullah, in her noted gravely voice asked, "Has Meher Baba broken his !?*%#@!? Silence yet?" When Baba was in Hollywood in 1935, Greta Garbo was most anxious to meet Him. In fact, she stayed up all night to be ready for her early appointment, but at the last moment, fell asleep and missed it! Baba commented that she was a very spiritual person, but was veiled from it in this life. All this and much much more, including copious photos. Fills celebrated The Awakener's 30th anniversary by publishing a very special Volume XX-2 entitled Women in the West. In the early Twenties Meher Baba predicted that His work would be done in the East by men, and in the West, by women. In this edition, Fills gives

some wonderfully detailed stories of the most prominent of the 'Western Mandali': Princess Norina Matchabelli, Countess Nadine Tolstoy and Elizabeth Patterson. She also has stories to tell about Delia de Leon, Kitty Davy, Margaret Craske and many other fascinating personalities....all powerful women who gave their all to serve their Master. The magazines are $5 apiece. For those of you who bought Song of Huma when it first came out a few years ago, and all of you who have tried to buy it recently and found it is 'out of print'.....Rejoice! Elaine Cox, the producer of this beautiful tape, tells me that volume two is almost ready. In fact, by the time you read this, I may have it on the shelves. For those of you unfamiliar with this title, Huma was the pen name Meher Baba took when, in His very early years, he wrote poems and submitted them to the newspapers and magazines. These haunting love songs to God have been exquisitely sung, acappella, by the women Mandali, and set to music by Elaine, using the very best of professional musicians, when she brought the master tapes back to the States. It has been a tremendous job, not to mention extremely expensive, putting it all together. For Elaine, the labour of love is it's own reward, but our joy in the hearing of this work is also very gratifying! $10. The ethereal photos of our Beloved that appear on pages opposite are from the Harmon on Hudson video (recently discovered Paramount Newsreel footage of the 1932 visit of Meher Baba to America). In this video we see Baba drawing water from a well and drinking it. Recognizing how extraordinary these rare images of Baba are, Sheriar Foundation has made available a selection of eight 8 x 10 black and white photographic prints. They are $12.00 ea. or $80 for the set.


For fans of the international magazine ing in our Bookstore. It is a very beautiful 'coffee table' book dedicated to Baba (Tajudin' The Glow, Naosherwan Anzar has given us a "The Heavenly Rose") and titled The Poetry of hardbound edition, incorporating all the issues from May of '85 to May of '90. The Glow alRoses. It is magnificent full colour photograph of the many, very varied and unusual roses th; ways has articles of great interest, and the full colour covers of various artist's rendition of our Carolyn cultivates in her garden. It is her bo01 from start to finish: Carolyn grew the roses, Beloved are more than just beautiful to look at, they are, each one, worth framing. The special picked them, arranged them in a multitude of bound edition is $50. artistic ways, photographed them and then The Bookstore packed up chose the poetry to accompany each photograph. The poems are and traveled three times last year. The first time was to Meherana in from many and varied poets, May when Bhau Kalchuri was the among them: Hafiz, Rumi, guest. For the Sahavasees, to see Shakespeare, Malcolm Schloss, this full fledged Bookstore in a Shelly, Wordsworth, Emily Dickinson and many more. Truly tent, seemingly just sprung into being overnight, is always a beautiful book. To look at it you suprise. To get it that way requires would swear the price would be a tremendous amount of work on $40-$48. Imagine my delight the part of many people. First, when I found we could sell it for volunteers are called in to pack up very low $20! What a really beau everything from our Los Angeles tiful gift this book would make, horne. Then it is loaded on a truck either for yourself or a loved one and driven up to the Sahavas Abeautiful rose creation by who appreciates the beauty of Carolyn Parker. roses. I immediately bought thret location, be it Pilgrim Pines for our from the first shipment!! Los Angeles Sahavas or to Meherana - a six hour drive away. Then starts the fun of unpackWhen I spoke to Raphael Rudd recentl) ing it all and creating magic. None of this could to reorder the Skydancer CD (unfortunately n( be accomplished without our many helpers, but available at this time, but I have plenty of the mostly with the unflagging help of the indefati- tapes), he told me some very exciting news: gable Michael Ramsden - a man who feels as I Fifteen years ago he was in The Boathouse do, that we are truly blessed to be allowed to laying down some tracks. Anyone familiar wit slave for our Beloved in this fashion. The fact English Rock has heard of The Boathouse! Pet< that you all so much enjoy having the Traveling Townshend recorded many a famous album, a did other English rockers, in this Studio that Bookstore in your midst, is just a wonderful added bonus. Last on the list of plusses is that had once been a boathouse on the Thames the profit from the sales goes towards helping Embankment by Twickenham, just outside of keep our Center afloat, and also allows us to London. Raphael was playing his usual fabumake a healthy donation to Meherana. lous piano and harp, Pete was on guitar and We had intended to show you more of they had a 'pick up' drummer you may have Carolyn Parker's beautiful work with Roses heard of....... Phil Collins!! Can you believe it?? and the Beloved in our last issue, but we ran Is this going to be a huge commercial success ( out of space. Hopefully there will be room in what?! Raphael will finally get the outside this edition to show you more. Carolyn has also just had a book published which we are carryI continue on next pag


$.~.*G$.~.*G$.~.*G~.~.*G$.~.*

1995 SERVICE COMMITTEE REPORT The L.A. Saba Family First of all, we are happy to report that Gus (Marion Gust) and George Gerdes each came through open heart surgery with flying colors! Gus had bypass surgery in February, and George had surgery on a valve in September. Thank you, everyone, for your prayers and well wishes. In August, Tony Hage, Lois Jones, Rosalee Dunphy, Will Guston, and Chris and Pris Haffenden visited Dana Field at his nursing home. Dana and the other residents were treated to a feast of videos of Beloved Baba and yummy goodies! Although we had to do a little coaxing to get him up and out of bed, once he joined the party, Dana had a great time. He was very happy! Chris and Pris entertained with their wonderful "Still Yet More" chamber music. Several residents in wheelchairs really perked up when Rosalee took them by the hand and danced with them! Jacko and Becky Caraco welcomed little Adam Meher to Beloved Baba's world in July. By the time you read this article, the Caraco clan will be heading for Mariposa. Jacko has re-Iocated his acupuncture practice there, and the Caracos will be the new occupants of the Caretaker's house at Meherana. We will miss them all.

We have several years worth of fond memories of the myriad of events the Caracos so graciously hosted at their home. Jacko, Becky, and Adam, we wish you well as you begin your "new life" journey together. Avatar Meher Baba Ki Jai!

Outreach Unfortunately, the Seedling, where we previously donated time, food, clothing and money to help families in need, has closed. The Seedling was located in South Los Angeles. In addition to helping families on a daily basis, the Seedling provided ample food, toys and other gifts to 500 families every Christmas. The St. Joseph Center, in Venice, coordinates projects similar to those of the Seedling. We are working with them this year, and we'll give a full report in the next issue of the LampPost. If you know of anyone in need (of food, clothing, or just a little moral support), please contact the Service Committee via the Center: (310) 474-9454.

Jai Saba and welcome to the Bookstore! recognition he deserves, and the name of Meher Baba will be spread farther and wider. The working title of the album is "The Awakening." It has Pete singing four songs, one of which is entitled In Praise of the Avatar. All tracks are Raphael's compositions. It is projected to be ready around March. Remember folks, you read it in your LampPost first! I have just finished speaking with the Head of Promotions for the record company and he is most interested in hearing anything he can about Meher Baba. This, from Raphael

having told him about who He was while they were talking business and discussing the recording . Well, I think that is a great note to go out on.

Avatar Meher Baba Ki Jai!!!

See you, in the Bookstore,


~.~.*G~.~.*G~.~.*G~.~.*G~.~.* YEAR-END PROGRAM REPORT By Billy Goodrum This year I have learned that it can be beneficial to be naive. A year ago, after being elected to the Board of Directors as one of four people running to fill four open seats, I became head of the program committee. Being new to such matters, I sought out the assistance of those who had preceded me as program heads. Debra Ashe helped me tremendously and showed me the ropes; do' and dont's, ideas, hints and educated me in general regarding this new position I found myself in. I also talked to Jeff Maguire, who had served as program head prior to Debra. He suggested one way to keep the programs interesting was to invite guests that had spent time with Baba. Taking his advice to heart, I began to think who our Center may want to invite as guests for the year. Two names immediately popped into my mind: Katie Irani and Don Stevens. So I asked the Board to authorize me to extend invitations to them. I wrote Katie and after some time (she was waiting for Goher to return from medical treatment in Atlanta) I received her letter accepting our invitation. Needless to say I was ecstatic. Before I ever got a chance to extend an invitation to Don Stevens I got a call from Adele Wolkin. She had just received a letter from Don saying he was going to be in Lcs Angeles in the latter part of the summer and wanted to do a program at the Center. Baba had certainly made my job easier. Thank you Baba. The other day at one of Katie's programs at Jacko's house I remarked to Jeff how sound his advice to invite guests had been. He looked at me and said that he had meant people like Rick Chapman or Robert Dreyfuss (from the Bay Area), not Mandali. We both laughed and acknowledged that it was a bit of good luck that I had been so naive in my interpretation of his advice. Baba has blessed us with an entire year full of

wonderful guests: Beloved Baba's dear Mandali members Katie Irani and Bhau Kalchuri came to inspire us with their Love for Baba. Don Stevens, Leatrice Johnston, Henry Kashouty and Dara and Amrit all came and shared with us their experiences with the Beloved. Thanks to guests Ella and Peter Marks, Merwan and Rukshana Mehta, our own Adele Wolkin and musical guest Buzz Conner for making our Sahavas so memorable. Other musical guests throughout the year have included Richard Pikoff and Gabriella Tal. Thank you all. I want to thank all the many people that have helped with programs throughout the year: all those that gave and participated in programs as well as those who attended. Thank you all who had events in their homes and who accommodated guests. Dr. Mamoud Ajang has done an excellent job leading the Farsi meetings. Sometimes after the meetings I see those that attended streaming blissfully down the stairs and I find myself wishing I could speak and understand Farsi. Thank you Dr. Ajang for your committment and dedication to coordinating these meetings of spirited devotion to Baba. Much thanks to Adele for consistently encouraging me and contributing excellent program ideas and to Lois Jones for helping with Katie's arrangements. We are forever indebted to Jacko and Becky for sharing their home with so many of our guests and with the group at large. We will miss Jacko, Becky and Adam tremendously when they move to Mariposa. Much, much appreciation to our Board President Mike Ramsden who gives each board member plenty of creative freedom and is always willing to help anytime and anyplace it may be needed. If anyone has program idea or would like to do a program please contact me. Jai Baba. ~

'When mind soars in pursuit of the things conceived in space, it pursues emptiness; but when dives deep within himself, he experiences the fullness of existence." AVATAR MEHER BABA


PART" OF

The New World Culture continued from page 13 our physical life and an unnecessary layer of complexity to our psyche. Plus, the inherent possibility of manipulation at the apex levels, and at lower levels of the system, would be there, but perhaps this could be minimized or eliminated by a splendid design concept. All of which delivers the discussion to Option #3, a currency free system. In an examination of the natural world, it's apparent that everything is given free of charge. Sunshine, air and water are provided freely, and resources, in a pure state, can be extracted and utilized without cost. This situation alters with the implementation of commercial venues which intercede between needs and supplies. The instituting of this market device is the central feature of an economic system, with money being its fuel. A currency free society most accurately reflects a pristine relationship with the earth. At this Edenic level, the access to resources is direct and free. It must be restated, that the scope of economic freedom in this model extends to every avenue of activity. Food, naturally, would be free, as well as all resources from water and land to timber and gold. Also included would be all clothing and shelter needs. Medicine would join the list, as would all medical and health services. All products of human imagination would have no costs attached. This would include crafted works like pottery and jewelry and works of art; and extend to information, communication and transportation systems and devices, both public and private. Also, all energy needs would be supplied freely. Without exception, all resources, goods and services would be unconditionally free. Immediate ramifications would arise from this system. There would be an immense simplification of life, and we could realistically witness the dismantling of currency based social ranking. We would be unencumbered from engaging our consciousness in money based mathematical calculations. And most of all, we would experience ecstatic levels of freedom which would automatically add to our happiness. Saying this type of system is unrealistic is understandable, but what must be understood, is that a currency free system accomplishes the same objective as the fully distributive one, only by different means. The fully distributive system imparts sufficient money to its PAGE 26

citizenry to enable them total access to resources, goods and services. In the currency free system, this identical state is realized by making all resources, goods and services free. They both accomplish universal prosperity, it's only the method of conferral that is different. The flaw in this economy would be the misuse of privilege that unlimited access to resources and services would allow. This, potentially, could encourage frivolous or wasteful lifestyles that exploit the prosperity of the system to the detriment of the users personal well being and to the commonwealth. This problem could be checked within a currency system by restricting funds to that individual or group. One could assume, however, that measures could be enacted within a currency free system to counteract this type of behavior. Returning to the notion of a money free society, I would suspect that acceptance can be rendered at lower levels of the spectrum, food and raw materials. But in contemplating work efforts, or providing items for peoples needs or creating crafted objects or works of art; where labor, market savvy or invention is involved, how can people not be compensated? This concern is legitimate, but largely stems from the delusion of ownership. The worker "owns" his energy, the businessman his wares and the artist, inventor or craftsman, his outpourings. Under the current economic system, and by our way of thinking, an exchange of currency transfers ownership of that personal commodity to the purchaser. Now the purchaser owns this resource. But if scrutiny is applied to the examination, a Divine Context is apprehended which supersedes all petty notions of ownership. And this applies to highly advanced systems of technical craftsmanship. Air travel involves a complex arrangement of interlocking activities. Traveling freely seems ludicrous, but if properly analyzed, this assessment is challenged. Let's compile a case. By factoring in all the elements that make air travel possible, it becomes obvious to what extent Divine Agency was responsible. At the most basic level, molecular cohesion holds all the materials together which are used in construction. And, all materials, even process related ones like metal alloys and plastics, have their ultimate origin in the natural world, which man is not responsible for. The mind that conceived the airplane, or jet, was


not only designed by God, but suffused with the ideas to Seen from this more complete understanding, this construct this vehicle. The human body, also engineered Divine Agency is totally responsible for all of our creby Infinite Intelligence, was given sufficient adroitness to build this craft. Laws of physics, like gravity and air ative acts and manifested systems. By this reasoning, . resistance, make flight possible. The electromagnetic these human generated systems are not only an extension of this Divine Agency; they spectrum allows radar and are this Divine Agency, radio to operate within operative in this capacity. their re pective wave frequencies. And, human Assigning anthroposenses allow the pilots to morphic designations, one fly, the ground and support can state that not only is the crews to function in a GOVERNMENT Intergovernmental Lord responsible for coordinated effort, and the Departments everything, and controls passengers to experience flight. In this orchestration everything, but equally of events and realities, importantly, The Lord man's ability to create and Owns Everything! From Military sustain this system, is this vantage point, all labor, LAW Intelligence entirely contingent upon resource items and crafted Police & Penal Agencies works, not only have their operating within a Divine Context that not only origin in the Lord, but they supports and sustains his are owned by the Lord. efforts, but which inspires BUSINESS So from an Absolute him with the continued Media Proprietary Position, and ideas that have been assigned to "progress." within the framework of a transaction, the Lord is the Question: Can the New Humanity be superimposed only one we can pay for Viewed from this upon this system? resources, goods and vantage point, it's apparent services. But assuming that this Divine Agency is Follow-up Thought: The main actors of these responsible for everything, transcendent indifference interconnected spheres of activity would have to be the creation and placement and having no need for any transformed - nearly enlightened for the New Humanof the materials, their recompense, how could this ity to operate in accordance with the A.;vatar's Visionability to be transformed practice be started? ary-Will. into other states, the From the foregoing physical laws and properFollowing Still: Given this degree of necessary ties and our capable human argument, it would appear transformation why must this system be maintained? that a crucial step towards vehicles equipped with Further: Just as this system was invented, implerealizing a currency free senses and a receptive mented and refined; can't an equally valid and society, is establishing an intelligence. Minus this working system be invented? One totally different and economic system that is Divine Context, air travel more conducive to the New Humanity? God-Centered and not mancould not have been centered. How this could invented or maintained. From this perspective, man realistically be formulated, is actually an extension of this Divine Agency of Creremains to posterity if this path is chosen. ation and not an encapsulated being who creates independently of this Agency, and subsequently, owns his creations. continue on the next page

Paradigm for Rulership and Control


PART" OF

The New World Culture Continued from page 27 Another critical step is the full understanding that conferring happiness brings the greatest return on happiness, and that giving ones labor, talent or crafted works to society, freely and joyously, would not only constitute an elevated form of selfless service, it would actually be a form of worship. But whichever economic system comes into being: our current one reformed, a totally fair currency system or one currency free, is not the important issue to engage our attention. What's vastly more significant is that the Lord Himself is leading us towards a Coming Civilization of His Design. When the new world culture blooms, our attention will tum collectively towards the Lord, and as we realize our commonality in spirit, our legacy of diversity will be transmuted into unity; as we celebrate our new life, in the felicitous harmony of knowing, that freedom, happiness and being one, are verities of the soul. This essay will

conclude with the words of Meher Baba, who is ushering in this Grand Adventure. "The new world culture, born from the new humanity and its integral vision, will automatically involve a cultural synthesis. The vision that inspires the new culture will be comprehensive." "The world will soon realize that neither cults, creeds, and ceremonies on the one hand, nor passionate striving for material welfare on the other, can ever bring about real happiness but that selfless love and universal brotherhood can accomplish it." "The future of humanity is in the hands of those who have this vision..."

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In This Issue Design, Production & Layout: Bob Dearborn Arts & Entertainment: Richard Arthur Bookstore Editor: Dina Snow Franklin Calendar Editor (Program Chairperson): Richard Arthur Children's Corner Editor: Adele Wolkin Announcements Editor: Linda Zavala Distribution: Clea Sucoff and Harry Thomas

Features:

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AMARTITHI AROUND THE WORLD 27TH AMARTITHI IN INDIA by James Cox THE OLD WORLD IN THE NEW LIFE by Don Stevens

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AMARTITHI IN SCANDINAVIA by Eric Solibakke

Share your artwork, photos, poetry, letters, articles, humor and ideas with us. Please submit your written work on computer disk along with a print-out (we accept 3.5" computer disks only). Or typewrite it, double-spaced, single-sided, on clean, white paper. DEADLINES: November 15 (January - March issue) February 15 (April- June issue) May 15 (July - September issue) August 15 (October - December issue) ADDRESS CHANGES I SUBSCRIPTION REQUEST: Clea Sucoff, 3122 Arizona Avenue, #C, Santa Monica, CA 90404 (310) 828-1182 BOOKSTORE: Dina Snow Franklin c/o Avatar Meher Baba Center of So. California 10808 Santa Monica BlVd., Los Angeles, CA 90025 Between 7 pm & 11 pm, phone (310) 837-6419, or 24-hour fax (310) 839-BABA (2222) or BABABOOKS @AOL.COM DONATIONS: LampPost Donations, Avatar Meher Baba Center of Southern California, 10808 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90025 WEST COAST MEETINGS In Orange County call Lynne or Steve Berry (714) 966-1262 In the Inland Empire call Jay Mohler (619) 366-9330 In Ojai call Peter Justin (805) 646-4159 (Wednesdays, 7:30 pm) In Santa Barbara call Donna Karpeles (805) 682-1877 In San Diego call Scott or Anne Makeig (619) 436-7155 (monthly) In Fresno call Sharon or Phil Scott at (209) 449-0877 (every first. second and third Wednesdays of the month) In San Francisco call Mary Weiss or Peter Ravazza (415) 221-8724 (Wednesdays, 7 pm) In Northern California call (510) 845-4339 for full schedule In Portland, call the Wilson's (503) 873-2048 (every Friday night, Discourses meetings every other Sunday afternoon) In Sacramento call Marilyn Buehler at (916) 925-4451 In Seattle call JoycelTom Geoffroy (206) 283-7027, (Fridays,

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6 ..... OBSERVANCE OF AMARTITHI AT OUR CENTER by Lois Jones 7 ..... AMARTITHI AT MEHER SPIRITUAL CENTER by Deborah Smith 3 GROUPS IN THE U.K. by Sarah McNeily AUSTRALIA 9 THE ADAMS FAMILY REMEMBERS from Meher Saba Australia

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THE WORLDS BEST KEPT SECRET by Michale Morice THE OVERPASS THAT BABA BUILT by D.S.F. Los Angeles

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CENTER REPORT by Michael Ramsden

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ANNOUNCEMENTS

16 . . .. THANKSGIVING DAY AT MEHER MOUNT by Marguerite Poley 17 19

CALENDAR OF EVENTS WHAT'S UP ATMEHERMOUNT by Gigi Driessen

20 ... THE PINK CLOUD by James Cox

20 ... ABRAHAM AND MOSES by John Page

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CHILDREN'S CORNER

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ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT

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REVIEWS

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THE MARKET FOR GOD by Meher Baba

31 ... AT THE BOOKSTORE by Dina Franklin

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The LoveStn!et lampPost keeps the Southern California Avatar Meher Saba community abR!ast 01 Center activities, along with national and international friends, it represents an historical context; and it provides a forum for contemporary accounts of life with Meher Saba, as Master and Guide. The LoveStreet lampPost is free, given in the spirit and with the intention of spreading Avatar Meher Saba's Message of Love and Truth. A publication of the Avatar Meher Saba Center of Southern California, 10808 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90025. Published quarterly (January, April, July, October). All contents ~ 1996 by the Avatar Meher Saba Center of Southern California, except where noled. Call (310) 474-9454 for membership information, late-breaking program and events information, a copy of the Bookstore catalog, to get on the mailing list, to receive upcoming Fly-to-lndia Sweepstakes tickets or just to say hello.


Since there was no other option, I told her that she was not leveraging us, but that she was denying water to Meher Baba for his followers, and that if forced, we would give her that connection, but the consequences of the action would fall on her, all of which seemingly had no effect on her, so we were forced to hook up their pIpe.

AMARTITHI AROUND THE WORLD 27th AMARTITHI IN INDIA by James Cox [Meherabad, near Ahmednagar, M.S., India] The days leading up to January 30th and 31 st were hectic, maddening and exhausting for most of us who worked to get all of the parts together for the biggest Amartithi celebration ever, the commemoration of Meher Baba's passing away in 1969.

They came by bus

After working for weeks, and almost around the clock for the last three days, water finally began to flow into Meherabad from the new well on the 30th afternoon, just as one of the other Trust pipelines burst. But there was no interruption in supply to the ten thousand that came for Baba's darshan.

I don't know the other stories, but my main focus was trying to get a major well, owned by my associate, a follower of Meher Baba, Sharad Agarkar, hooked up to the Trust supply to augment the Trust reserves in case of any problem. Naturally, as with most Baba related projects, the problems and difficulties were not only numerous, but very tricky in how they presented themselves. My favorite part had to do with a villager who had been very friendly, giving us permission to cross his land with a pipeline. After the ditch was dug with the help of dynamite, and just as we were going to set the pipe on the 29th, the farmer and son went away, and left his wife to bodily stop us from laying the pipe unless we gave them a connection for their house from the main pipeline. Other than the likelihood of a massive loss of water, there were also other technical problems making this arrangement undesirable, and of course, legally we could overcome this obstruction, but not in one day.

They came on foot

Amartithi this year was the biggest ever, nearly 10,000 registered pilgrims staying at Lower Meherabad and at the New Site, stretching the facilities to the maximum. In fact, some people were turned away for lack of sufficient tent space accommodations, and there was

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some friction created by the overcrowding, but eventually Jal and his gang of volunteers, who did a really remarkable job in the face of tremendous obstacles, were able to find a nook or cranny for everyone. How many came altogether is just a guess, but during the silence at noon on January 31 st, hundreds if not thousands of people had to stand out in the sun, as there was not room under the giant multi-colored pandal. For many inside, there was not room even to sit. Baba's love magnet just keeps on drawing in His filings.

as they had done in the past. People could meet Eruch, but were requested not to embrace him. But I suppose this change is inevitable, and foreshadows the day when we will be left with no mandali members at all.

One very noticeable change this time was the fact that parking space at Meherabad had become a premium item. Hard to imagine, but when you looked at the sea of cars, true. On the 31 st, there was literally no space left to park on the hill, and Lower Meherabad, behind Hostel C was a sea of cars, jeeps and buses, covered in clouds of dust.

To avoid having pilgrims standing in the sun for six hours to take darshan, the pandal was setup stretching from the Samadhi across to the stage.

Of course there was singing, dancing, music and movies as there are every year, but this year with a very beautiful backdrop to the amphitheater painted by Katherine Cox. (Please forgive me the plug, but it was a really exceptional piece.) The queue for Darshan was immense, and at one point, before people started bowing down four at a time, the line, after hours of hairpin cutbacks, stretched all the way down to Arangaon. Another first this year were video cameras and monitors set up so that people in line could watch people taking darshan.

The women mandali arrived at around 10:45 a.m. and went to the Samadhi for darshan. It made many of us very happy to see that everyone's health had improved enough so that they could all make it for the noon silence on the 31 st, which marked the actual time of Baba's passing, and which always has a very unique feeling.

The amphitheater with a whimsical backdrop painted by Katherine Cox

Local school children under the pandaI

Just before twelve, the recording of "Begin the Beguine" to which Baba had listened, was played, and then there was the usual fifteen-minute silence, followed by shouts of AVATAR MEHER BABA KI JAI!, and a rather

Mani and the women mandali came only for a couple of hours this year, during the noon silence, and many people were disappointed in not being able to greet them

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involved warning by Aloba about con-artists masquerading as Baba followers. But sure enough, the prayers, in many languages, did follow the warning. The transformation which Meherabad undergoes at this time is really something that is difficult to convey in words. The place becomes so suffused with the strength of Baba's love, that it takes on a unique identity of its own, ceasing to be the old Meherabad that we see for the other 363 days of the year. Stalls, colors, people and lights sprout everywhere, and the roads become impassable to vehicles due to the congestion of pedestrians. The outsides become indoors, and things happen to people's insides. An addiction is created in the hearts ofBaba's followers, and they come again and again. An interesting thing happened here on the 2nd, though, just as everyone had left. Meherabad was plunged into powerlessness at about 11 a.m., and as there are frequent outages, and everyone being exhausted, no one happened to notice for 7 hours that the problem was on our side ofthe lines. It seems some state electrical board employees had come to Meherabad on the 2nd, and without telling anyone, disconnected the entire supply in the late morning, and left for lunch before they could reconnect us. For some reason they never came back, and never contacted us. Hughie thought it was sabotage, but Ted and I assured him that there was nothing out of the ordinary here. The next morning, we sent someone to bring them back and reconnect our transformer, but it was about 4 p.m. before we could get the lights back on. During the same time, we also ran out of water at the Samadhi area for several hours.

.

Considering there were no significant electrical or water problems during Amartithi, this seemed to some of us like a bit of too coincidental humor by Youknowho.

After Amartithi A bamboo tent pole cracks; blue ruffles trail from sagging fabric. Yesterday was jasmine and roses against a whirl of bhajans and ghazals As milling throngs, dizzy with love, waited to spend one brief and blissful moment at Your feet.

Today they have gone and on the path to the railroad tracks Tea stalls and souvenir stands vanish swiftly as illusion. Two bullock carts heaped high with mattresses creak toward town. Tomorrow only bamboo skeletons Stripped bones of bright pandals Then bare earth, dust, the arid Maharashtra plain. A fierce hot wind will sweep Your hill To carry off whatever crows, dark scavengers have left behind Until no small distraction's left to catch the eyeBut what is Real remains. -Nancy Wall

THE OLD WORLD IN THE NEW LIFE By Don Stevens Often we are asked what people devoted to Meher Baba are doing in their group meetings in Europe. We have been asked by The LoveStreet LampPost to give a periodic report on such activities. We have just passed Amartithi, and this is always the occasion for special reflection and remembering of His mission on earth. Many of the groups in Europe do not hold a special day of observance, but during their regular meeting closest to this date, discuss especially their reflections on being with the Avatar whether He has now manifested, whether He has broken His silence. These continue to be as challenging, as they were the first time one contacted the fact of Meher Baba's recent physical presence among us. Not to leave the subject dangling, a great many Baba followers in Europe believe He has manifested, and almost as many feel He has also broken His silence. The Meher Baba Association centered in London, always observes Amartithi by a special occasion open to the public and often advertised in the press. This one featured readings from Mani's Family Letters, followed by the film, The Great Darshan. The combination made a great impression on the audience. In fact, Sue Biddu, the Chairman of The Association remarked that everyone felt a strong sense of Baba's presence. The English are not quite as lavish with their expressions of 4


Slovenia, with several others, have left for a Meherabad visit, and Rada from Serbia has been caring for Bhau in the hospital for some weeks. The Italian groups under the deeply caring guidance of Silvano and Silvana Brunelli, and our beloved Valeria Violalti in Assisi carry on constantly a succession of activities that tax one to try to stay abreast of what they are up to.

emotion and spiritual senses, so this was indeed a memorable happening. The Association also sponsors each Thursday evening a meeting with as its centerpiece, a film of Meher Baba. These have been very effective especially with people new to Baba. Marseille, at its early February meeting will celebrate both Amartithi and the return for a short visit of one of the founding pillars of the group. Hasan Selisik and his wife. Hasan was the first person to knock on the door of Madame Antoni, that grand lady of France who moved especially to Marseille on her retirement to Paris, to leave the door open for Baba's will in that area. Hasan soon brought his fellow students from the School of Architecture at the University of Marseille, and Madam Antoni found herself surrounded by an energetic and porous group of young people. Hasan moved back to Turkey after his graduation, but cannot resist the pull of his companions in Marseille. It ought to be that way, don't you think?

Au revoir from Neti Neti and Don Stevens.

AMARTITHI IN SCANDINAVIA by Eric Solibakke The Winter issue of our quarterly newsletter, which reached about 200 Scandinavians a week before Amartithi, had a story describing celebrations at the Samadhi. It plants in them the seed idea of observing silence at noon on the 31 st followed by a repetition of The Master's Prayer.

The two groups in the South of France, Marseille and Cagnes, enjoy each other's company very much, so for years they have had frequent joint meetings centered first at one locale and then the other.

Few Scandinavians would actually be able to do that during business hours unless they could find a moment of privacy at lunch hour. Sigrid managed to slip away from lunch with patients at her clinic and gather her energies for a number of undisturbed minutes remembering the Eternal Beloved.

What about group activities, during the usual meetings? The recent (May) Seminar put on by several of the French and London groups provided the means of bringing up several important topics which have carried over into this fall's group activity. It also gave the means for a lot of personal bull sessions which in tum brought other topics to light. Here are some of the subjects that went onto different group agendas: • • • • •

Espen was working outside in 5 degree sunshine putting a new roof on a house; I called him on his cellular phone a few minutes before 12:00 to remind him of the time. Camilla phoned in the evening to say that almost at the stroke of noon a woman in her care grabbed a knife and began making threatening gestures with it.; there was no silence there. In a remote area on the west coast, Rigmor lit candles in her Baba room and joined the Beloved in His silence and prayers.

The relationship between karma and sanskaras. How far does Baba go into our daily lives and what does he not touch? The four roles of the Avatar in this incarnation. Staying in touch with Baba. Forming a new religion?

You can well imagine the wide-ranging comments that these subjects have elicited, especially in the discussion format adopted by many of the European groups.

In one way or another we felt the wave of Divine Presence roll over us as midday passed through our area. It moved our hearts once again to remember His unfathomable suffering and equally unfathomable beauty, His frailty and awesome strength, His humanity and divinity. How can all come together so forcefully in one gentle individual?

And Italy and former Yugoslavia? Many of you know that there are very vigorous activities in both of these countries. Dusan Doblanovich and Marina Zaler from

For me personally Amartithi glorifies His victory; it is rooted in His statement that His work has been completed 100 percent to His satisfaction. It

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commemorates the perfection of his work and play in this advent and indicates the passing on of the mantle of that work and play to us who long to love Him.

Stermer, accompanied on piano by his mother, Joyce Stermer, sang his deeply moving, original spiritual, "I Dreamed I Saw the Face of God."

Arnartithi silence is a great hurrah for that victory!

OBSERVANCE OF AVATAR MEHER BABA'S AMARTITHI AT OUR CENTER by Lois Jones "Grieve not that the Lamp that burnt in its multi-bright splendor 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." (From "Ever The Avatar" - Adi K. Irani's message at the Last Darshan, April 26, 1969.) On a rainy Los Angeles night, Beloved Baba showered His Grace on our observation of the 27th anniversary of His Amartithi, on Wednesday, January 31st. We came together in our upstairs meeting room. Baba's chair at the front of the room, and the intimate crowd that gathered gave it the feeling of being in His living room. In a program hosted by Tamara Mark and Lois Jones, Baba was remembered through song, dance and His own precious words.

Janani Lee dancing for Baba. Pete Townshend's film of Beloved Baba, 0 Parvardigar, was the prelude to our fifteen minutes of silence. The film was preceded by Billy Goodrum's powerful piano rendition of the Gujarati Arti. The silence was broken with three hearty A V AT AR MEHER BABA KI JAI'S, immediately followed by "Begin the Beguine," played so beautifully by Chris (on oboe) and Pris (on guitar) Haffenden, who are Still Yet

The evening opened with a special treat: Janani Lee reprised a dance she performed last year in Mandali Hall, accompanied by a recording of the Australian Arti, sung beautifully by her brother, Joshua (who was unable to be with us that night).

More Chamber Players. We all then joined in reciting the Master's Prayer, The Prayer of Repentance, and the Beloved God Prayer. The evening concluded with our voices coming together in song when we sang the Australian Arti to Beloved Baba. Avatar Meher Baba, Ki Jai! Avatar Meher

Adele Wolkin shared her thoughts regarding Baba's Amartithi, and read a moving Christian prayer, which was written by Meher Baba. We enjoyed Deborah Ashe's touching a capella rendition of Jeff Mylett's "House of the Lord," which has become an annual tradition. Lois Jones read, "Keep Me With You," Baba's discourse number 29 in Meher Baba Calling.

Baba, Ki Jai! Avatar Meher Baba, Ki Jai!

AMARTITHI CENTER

Rosalee Dunphy sweetly sang, and translated, "Ishtiake," a song Baba wrote. The lyrics to this song were found in L.A., in the pocket of one ofBaba's coats, several years ago. The song was followed by a loving, tearful reading, by Tamara Mark, of Bhau Kalchuri's ghazal, "When You Have Gone Away." Then, Richard

AT

MEHER

SPIRITUAL

By Deborah M. Smith Deep in the woods of the Meher Center stands The Barn and it is there that Amartithi is celebrated every year. As usual it started about 11 :00 am, when the

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surrounding community poured through the Gateway, everyone dressed according to where they had just came from; cleaning houses, working at the office, digging in the garden. The atmosphere was very expansive-it felt good to be at the Center mid-morning on a spring-like day. A group of us walked down the sandy trail from the parking area and it was as if we were following Baba to the Barn as we have so often seen others do in the films of His visits to the Center in the 50's.

GROUPS IN THE UNITED KINGDOM By Sarah McNeily A motto over the door at the entrance to the London Baba Center at 228 Hammersmith Grove might well read, "That which is essential is invisible to the eye." Certainly, there is very little outward sign for a visitor descending the narrow flight of steps to a dingy-looking basement flat just off Shepherd's Bush in West London, proclaiming this to be the U.K., HQ of the Highest of the High. But it is indeed the Center ofthe Meher Baba Association of Great Britain where all the regular meetings are held.

Inside the Barn the atmosphere was very different. Usually quite dark, the room was lit by the wagon wheel fixtures hanging from the ceiling and a huge fire that had been started in the fireplace. Some folks sitting up close were sweating yet strangely the magnificent flowers on the mantle appeared unaffected by the heat. In the center of it all was Baba's photo above the mantle, illuminated by the roaring flames.

And one can't help feeling it is just as He wishes. Avatar Meher Baba is President of the Meher Baba Association here in England and this makes the Association unique. Meher Baba also held a British passport so, in more ways than one, He signaled a particular purpose for His work in this country, but it did not include the purchase or construction of a specially designed Center for His use on the occasions He came to these shores.

Ann Conlon announced the order of the program. Then Jane Haynes led our hearts to the spirit of the day by reading excerpts from a letter recently sent from Mani, who despite her own suffering, shared her struggle to let go and keep giving more and more of herself to Baba in any way she could. Baba's own words were read powerfully by Darwin Shaw and Phyllis Ott O'Toltz and Andy Lesnik recited one of his poem entitled "Origins." The music was particularly moving, each of the musicians was in fine voice; Hanna Peterson Meyer led the group in the Gujarati Arti, Gary Edelman performed his own composition, "The Amartithi Song," Cathy Riley sang a capella, "Precious Lord, Take My Hand," and Jim Meyer rendered "Begin the Beguine."

Instead, His manifestation across the U.K. is atomized rarely visible, widespread, working beneath the surface of appearances and involving His, as always, extraordinarily diverse range of individual talents. Norwich, Oxford, Lewes, Lancaster, Leicestershire, Dorset and Devon all have groups devoted to Meher Baba. Bhau's visits to the U.K. have taken him to many of these places. The ancient white horse cut into the chalk of the green hills above Sutton Courtney in Oxfordshire acquired Avataric significance on the occasion in 1993 when a summer Sahavas was held there.

The fire was a constant presence throughout the program, and it was during the fifteen minutes of observed silence that the logs broke and the fire was rearranged into a pile of glowing hot coals. It called out as a reminder that Baba's body indeed broke on Amartithi yet His fire remains, burning us daily as we try, like Mani, to give up more and more of ourselves in service to His Love.

Norwich, with its historical reputation as a center of spiritual power in mediaeval times envelops the visitor with an atmosphere of contemplation. The King of Hearts studio complex in the city houses local arts and crafts as well as Baba group meetings.

to

Lancaster is a university town and some people in the group there discovered Baba through their work as students. The theological studies department includes "God Speaks" in its curriculum.

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SERVING THE UNIVERSE God as God alone is not consciously man, and man as man alone is not consciously God. The God-Man is consciously both God and man; so the God-Man is both Lord and the servant of the Universe. Lord, in the state of helping all souls toward reality. Servant, as continuously bearing the burden of all. To serve Him who serves all is serving the universe.

Meheru's visit to the Baba group at Sutton Courtney in Oxfordshire in 1994

Selfless service and love are twin divine qualities. Only the one who loves can serve. Serve your Beloved God-Man and you are serving your own self in every other self.

Devon is of course the place Baba made a beeline for in 1932 and 1933 when He fIrst came to England. Ilfracombe in Devonshire and the farmhouse at East Challacombe are now sought out by pilgrims wishing to retrace His steps. Baba groups in this part of the country are growing in numbers and summer 1996 might even see a Sahavas in Devon.

The service He exacts is for your own spiritual benefIt; but this service must be spontaneous, willing, wholehearted, unconditional and not expecting any reward. This service is an ordeal which tries body, mind and spirit; or else wherein would the perfection of serving lie if it were to be easy and at one's convenience? The body suffers, mind is tormented, but the spirit of the selfless server ofthe Master experiences the bliss of satisfaction.

Special events gatherings in London that attract larger numbers than can be accommodated at the Hammersmith Grove Center have on occasion been held at the Violet Needham Hall, a pleasant chapel building on the garden campus of West London University which allows more space for Baba lovers traveling in from outside the London area and which also has the facilities for films, music, dance and drama.

Only the one who has can renounce. A king . giving up everything and becoming a beggar " exhibits true renunciation, and so only the one who, without any question and regardless of - consequences, serves the God-Man really serves; otherwise it would be just like paid labor.

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-MeherBaba '~~"~?oI:.:"',';!J;"""'A"U~."'~~~~""·~;~'J.;":~'~~'l:.·":1oi:"1'l;:1lo":'~~;~~"":).;~·~:~:~:'-

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"YOUR BEING WITH ME PHYSICALLY IS IMMATERIAL. IT IS MY BEING WITH YOU THAT MATTERS. SO KEEP ME WITH YOU ALWAYS."

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1Il1J!' ~. it !io biffitult to finb ~ob? 3Jt ~ btta~t pon art looking for !iOtItttIJing !'ou. babt ntbtt lot«.

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-Meher Baba i.l).Vo(1k"~':).~'':'<~ ..?-~.((.;-;''~';l:,':\·.'lIl:;<~;qlC~~f.~:i-+r.'.i:;.;~·,,~':)1~

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AUSTRALIA Thursday, 5 June 1958, 1 p.m., The Adams Family Remembers [5/13/94: Noel, Cynthia and Colin Adams are reminiscing about Colin's photos ofBaba (two ofwhich are above) which Colin took at the 1958 Sahavas at Avatar's Abode on 6/5/58. Colin was 13 years ofage at that time)

Cynthia: Yes, I got the same impression. Baba looked very somber, very abstracted. He seemed totally unaware of us all standing around looking at Him. And I felt as though the whole world including all spirits and souls were suspended there, waiting for Baba to move or decide.

Cynthia: Do you remember much about those photos Col?

Noel: Baba looked like something from outer space. He was so agitated, so deeply absorbed in something that we could not see.

Colin: Yes I do. They are still very clear to me even though many other events at the Sahavas do not stand out as sharply. But that day was a most significant time. Baba was promoting something

Colin: Baba looked like He was carrying the weight of the world on His shoulders. His suffering was so obvious, so tremendous. Many of us were very aware of this. I know I was. That is why I thought this time was so significant. That is why I wanted to take some photos of Baba at this time so we could all remember and SEE His suffering and feel it from His photo.

Cynthia: Promoting something? What do you mean? Colin: Don't you remember? We had just finished lunch and it was time for afternoon session. We all raced up the hill to Baba's House and there He was-sitting silently on His chair, His crutches nearby.

Cynthia: But why did you call it a "promotional" activity?

Noel: Baba was only silent in sound. I remember Him looking very agitated. His fingers were moving very fast and He seemed tense, very uptight and anything but relaxed.

Colin: What I just said. Baba wanted us to see His intense suffering, to see this weight on His shoulders. If you remember He told us later that He was working and this would be the last time we would see Him working. Eruch gestured to me to come forward so I could take some photos. I even tried to get a photo behind Baba to

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show the crowd, I mean all of us looking at Baba. But Eruch told me very forcibly NEVER to take any photo from behind Baba, so I could not. I don't know what Baba was promoting in His work, but I remember very clearly that He wanted to show us this work, for us to witness His work, this great weight and His suffering even though I don't know what it was all about.

Nothing is further from the truth. This part of Queensland, as indeed almost all of coastal Queensland is lush, green, rich and the fastest growing part of Australia.

Cynthia: Why do you think Baba allowed you to take important photos? Colin: Baba allowed me to do so because I was young and my understanding of events was so unclouded. Remember at that time I was occupied in practicing taking photos with my camera. Taking photos of pineapples was just as interesting to me as taking photos of Baba, so I had no other personal involvement with this event.

Baba's house at Avatar's Abode. Baba's room is the left window.

Noel: That's right. I have heard many people talk of how serene Baba was, how holy. But I felt zero in terms of Baba's "holiness" at that time. I never saw Him as serene either. In fact once I peeked at Baba through the curtain then He saw us and sent us away because He had lots of work to do. I saw Him totally on His own, His fingers going so fast. Again He looked like something from outer space and very agitated. Baba was so powerful, so tense. Baba wanted us to stand there and watch. It was a significant time and one that Baba wanted to be recorded for the future so He and Eruch organized Col to take those photos.

The Center itself is approached up a hill lined with tall trees and houses built among them, belonging in the main to Baba lovers. These, I presumed, were the core of the community living in the area, less populous than at Myrtle Beach, but substantial all the same. Arrangements to stay in the pilgrim's house were simply made and straight forward and quite casual. Australians don't stand on ceremony, and I don't think the Center is as yet heavily frequented except at specific times of the year, and of course by the local community when their time allows.

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[From the June, 1994 Meher Baba Australia, by permission.]

The result is, or was for me, a stay of utter peace in which for moments at a time I could have heard a pin drop a hundred yards away, the silence interrupted only by the bird song. The birds to my northern eyes, were exotic and their colors intoxicating.

THE WORLD'S BEST KEPT BABA SECRET

After the first night I had the pilgrim's house to myself. This was a simple place, no frills at all. No panic, it would seem, about being inundated by a flood of world pilgrims, although I believe there are plans for more accommodations in the style of Myrtle Beach.

A recent visitor to Avatar's Abode, Michael Morice from England, wrote the following in the English Meher Baba Association newsletter: I was drawn to Avatar's Abode on the presumption that this was an important spot on Baba's map! One of his three main world centers and an eventual place of world pilgrimage. I had visions of a dry, hot and exposed place, rather on the rough and ready side perhaps, with trees and vegetation planted but nowhere near maturity.

What is called Baba's House is a building mainly of corrugated steel, partitioned in two, so that one section retains its Australian farm shed character apart from the wooden floor. The other section is Baba's bedroom, wood lined walls, curtains drawn closed to protect the furniture from the sunlight. In here you are immediately

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and utterly in the company of the Beloved Avatar. Need I say more?

the Council, and 10, the name was changed to their satisfaction. Henceforth it was to be called Meher Road.

Yes, I said to myself, this is a place of world pilgrimage, except that the world doesn't know about it yet. I'm tempted to agree with the residents who say this is Baba's best kept secret, and then to keep the secret to myself and not send in this article.

Then came the year 1988. It was thirty years since the Master had stayed at His home. Each year at the same time, hundreds of people came to celebrate this momentous occasion. Now it so happened that the Government had built a very big road on which passed thousands of cars a day, and in order for the Faithful to get to the dusty road that led up the mountain to the Master's home, they had to travel an extra twenty minutes out of their way.

If! must mention any of the residents by name, I should say that Bill Le Page extended his warm hand and contributed much to the pleasure of my stay. He has the ebullience of a man twenty years his junior and obviously Baba used that energy to wonderful effect. Or should I say that the Spark created by Francis Brabazon and Bill together has created the energy Baba needed. Memories of Francis are still strong in the air.

So once more, they gathered together and petitioned the Council. The wanted an overpass built for their little community on top of the mountain, to cross above the big new road, so that they could easily reach the dusty little Meher Road. The Council laughed at them, and said, "You are only a few people, it is not worth the great expense to build such a thing as you ask, for so very few people."

I met many others, visited some in their homes and gained an immediate and lasting impression of Lovers of Meher Baba dealing with the same issues and the same challenges that all aspirants deal with whether they live in Woombye, London, Cornwall, Bombay or Chicago. They are worth the visit. But don't forget Baba's room.

But the lovers of God were persistent people, and they asked again and again. Finally, just to appease them and to give themselves a just reason for refusing the petition, they told the little group of people that they, the Council, would put a bar across the road to count the number of cars that traveled to the dusty little road each and every day for one whole week.

to THE OVERPASS THAT BABA BUILT ByD.S.F.

This made the people very happy, because they knew that this was the very week that they were having their celebrations for the Thirtieth Anniversary of their Master's visit. For this reason they had sent invitations out to some very magical people from allover the world, to please come and help celebrate. Among these people who came from across the oceans were twins by the name of Rustom and Sorab, a most leamed Judge called Kashouty, a very magical singer and musician called Kusum Singh, and sing she did! There was also a very learned Doctor who had lived with the Master, and had written many things about Him, called Dr. Barucha, and fmally there was Sam Kerawalla the Storyteller.

Once upon a time a man named Francis Brabazon built a home for God high on a mountain top on a secluded part of Queensland, Australia. In 1958 God visited His home in the Antipodes and was pleased. He named it Avatar's Abode. Now it so happened that a lot of the people living in Australia, saw this place and wanted to live there too. They wanted to be near at hand to breathe in the spiritual fragrance of the home of the Lord. There was a road of dust and stones that led to the top of the mountain. It was all wild bush, native Australian plants, and very beautiful. One by one the people came, and they built their houses there, side by side, along the dusty road at the foot of the Master's home.

Because this was such a special occasion and because of these magical visitors, many hundreds of lovers of Baba came and went many times a day over this little bar that the Council had put across the road. At the end of the week, just before everyone went back to their far away homes, and the traffic dwindled down to a dozen or so a day, the Council removed the little bar, and said to the

After 10 years or more, there were twelve homes along this road. All lived in by lovers of the Master. They decided that this was a very special road and they wanted it to have a very special name. They petitioned

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people, "You were right, this is a very important place, and we will build you your Overpass."

Director: Kevin Connor-ehairs Finance Committee. Manages budgets, accounting, investments, insurance, purchasing and tax reporting.

And so it came to pass. The Lovers of God did not have to travel a long way from the main path to get to their homes on the mountain-they now have a beautiful new paved road that flies high in the air over the very busy road far below.

Director:

Vacancy.

But Baba does not do miracles....

The Board reluctantly accepted the resignation of Billy Goodrum. We will miss his loving and inspired input this year and wish him all love and Baba blessings in his current and future endeavors. We have been very fortunate to be able to call on the services of Rocky Rodgers to take the vacant directorship until the end of 1996 (Billy's term).

CENTER REPORT: by Michael Ramsden

Rocky has been a Director many times and has agreed to accept the responsibility for fixed assets, which includes the Center's building and caretaker, archives, audio and visual libraries, equipment maintenance and storage.

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The Center Board met for the first time in 1996 on January 5th. The following appointments were made by the directors for 1996:

The Board reviewed and made plans for 1996; preparing budgets and contingency plans for all aspects of center operations. We are looking forward to membership growth and increased membership participation in all phases of center activities.

President: Michael Ramsden-Chairs the Board, Long Range Planning, and New Center Acquisition Committies.

The Budget was submitted for membership approval at the Special General Meeting 2/3/96. 164 ballots were mailed, 88 were returned and the budget was overwhelmingly approved for 1996. The Nominating Committee was also elected at this time. As Rocky Rodgers had accepted the vacant director position, he withdrew from the Nominating Committee ballot. This left five nominees for the five vacant nominating committee positions, all of whom were elected. Congratulations to:

Vice-President: Richard Stermer-Chair Program Committee. Includes Sahavas and responsibility for the development of child and youth programs. Secretary: Clea Sucoff-Secretary. Chairs Membership and mailing committees. Responsible for legal aspects of center operations. Treasurer: Kanji Miyao--Treasurer. Non-board Member

• • • •

Director: Adele Wolken-Personnel, Volunteer Co-ordination, Conflict Resolution, Staff Training Library Project. Director: Dina Franklin-Bookstore Manager, Love Street Lamp Post, Communications.

Mahmoud Ajang. Glenn Russ Vanessa Connor Arlene Stout Diana Goodheart.

A brief reminder to all members who were unable to return their ballots in time for the S.G.M. To Maintain voting membership status you must return your ballot. You may abstain if you do not wish to vote yay or nay! But you must return your ballot to state that you are abstaining to maintain voting membership rights. This requirement was approved by the membership at the November 1995 A.G.M. as a change to the By-laws. It is a small thing to ask - necessitated in large part by a

Director: Mehernoush Lorkalantari-Chairs Service Committee, Hospitality and Meet & Greet Services. Director: Wendy Ward-Chairs Fund-raising Committee. Responsible for coordinating year-round cash flow, New Center Capital Campaign.

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guest speakers from Bombay, Hoshang and Havovi Dadachanji. Hoshang met Meher Baba in 1943, and Havovi met the Beloved in 1952. The Dadachanji family has a long history with Baba, and we are looking forward to hearing Hoshang's stories about the early days as well as hearing about the couple's many visits with Baba. We can also look forward to Havovi singing Baba songs, which she "enjoys immensely." Havovi and Hoshang said that ''they are looking forward to being amongst their friends in the U.S.!"

you the songs which have touched my heart for many years." We hope you can join us. We look forward to seeing you. Jai Baba! -Lois Jones

A COLLECTION OF MEHERA SLIDES We are also pleased that Irwin Luck will be joining us, from Myrtle Beach, to tell us about his correspondence with Baba before they met, and about meeting Baba for the first time, in 1960. He has many wonderful stories about their subsequent meetings and communication. Of course, we will seize this opportunity to hear about the making of the films of Beloved Baba, and enjoy watching them together. Irwin says, "The L.A. Sahavas will give me an opportunity to share the inspiration I feel when I remember the many things that happened in my life with Baba."

A slide collection is being created for the L.A. Center and for archives. Do you have well composed photos or slides of Mehera that you would be willing to share for this purpose?

We are fortunate to have two guest singers this year, Janet Luck and Debbie Nordeen! In addition to their individual concerts, they will sing together. Janet Luck first heard of Baba in 1973, and worked at the Avatar Meher Baba Trust, in Ahmednagar, in 1978. Janet married Irwin Luck a few years later. Janet has composed songs dedicated to Meher Baba, one of which can be heard on the sound track of the film, "Meher Baba, Avatar of the Age;' and another on the cassette, The Lord and the Lady. Janet says, "I feel honored to be asked to sing for our Lord, Meher Baba at the L.A. Sahavas and I pray He grants me the strength and recovery from my present physical condition to come. His Love can make it possible." Debbie Nordeen is a singer and voice teacher in Asheville, North Carolina, where she also directs a community chorus. Debbie, along with her husband, Peter, lived in India for several years. She was a receptionist at the Pilgrim Center, and was director of the Meherabad chorus. Debbie assisted in the plays for Mehera's and Baba's Birthdays, as well as various informal programs throughout the year. Debbie can be heard on the cassette, On the Road to Meherabad, a recording made with her sisters, 3-D Jones. Debbie says, "I am very happy to be invited to the Sahavas. Though I've never been to Southern California, I feel a kinship with my Baba family there, having met so many of you in India. I look forward to sharing with

Mehera with Elizabeth Patterson's dog Kippie in the late '30s. Please call or write for more details:

Dr. Linda Zavala 195 S. Oak Avenue Pasadena, CA 91107-4031 USA Ph..: (818) 795-8322

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WHAT'S NEW WITH THE VIDEO RENTAL LffiRARY

A REMINDER FOR THE TRUST Meher Baba's Universal Work continues to manifest from work He did while physically present with us. One of the avenues for His work is the very Trust He created; the Avatar Meher Baba Trust. It is a means of support for His close mandali as well as the source of funds for a multitude of charitable objectives. To learn more about the Trust or to make a lovedonation, please contact:

We are happy to announce that the library is fully functioning again and new and exciting titles have been added. The "tape walli" Karina Page will be happy to send you a new listing of titles and particulars on the rental process. Send requests to AMBC-SC VIDEO CASSETTE LIBRARY, P.O. BOX 3247, SOUTH PASADENA, CA 91031-6247. EVE. TEL: (213) 2253910.

Lynn Berry 267 Hanover Drive Costa Mesa, CA 92626 (714) 966-1262

HELP WANTED: A word processor/typist to transcribe the many interesting taped talks that the archives library maintains. Future publication of these talks is the goal. Call Linda Z. At (818) 795-8322

If making a love-donation, please make your check payable to "FRIENDS OF THE MEHER BABA TRUST." Jai Baba!

ONE WORLD BBS One World is a FREE online service in Los Angeles that carries the Avatar Meher Baba Internet list/conference. To access One World call (310) 372-0987 using a computer and modem. To access the conference select M)essage Menu on the Main Menu and then A)rea change to "750" Meher Baba. JAI BABA!

HAVlNG A SAHAVAS SLUMP? Are you counting the days till another fantastic Sahavas talk pumps you up? Here's a quick and easy "fix" to make it through until the next Sahavas. Why not check out an audio tape from the lending library?

PASSAGES JIMMY MISTRY JOINS HIS BELOVED by James Cox

We've got lots of inspiring and entertaining talks from greats like Darwin, Filis, Padri, Kitty, Naosherwan, and many more! New tapes have been added from '92, '93 and '94 Sahavas'. Talks include Hilla Talwar and Najoo Kotwal who were with Baba since childhood and whose father Savak Kotwal worked for Baba tirelessly for many years; Charles Haynes' very funny talks on life with Baba; Jeff Maguire on Baba in Hollywood; Meheru Irani's most inspiring talks on living with Baba and Mehera; Bob and Jane Brown; Shireen Bonner's childhood memories of Baba, Franey Irani (Baba's sister-in-law), Jim Meyer and the ever charming Jack Small and his unforgettable singing.

[Dated January 21, 1996] Today at about noon, Jimmy Mistry, Trustee of the Avatar Meher Baba Trust, and long time Baba Lover, who spent time with Baba on many occasions over a 20 year period, joined his Beloved. He passed away from an apparent heart attack at Deepak Hospital in Ahmednagar, and his cremation is taking place in Meherabad this evening at around 8:30 p.m. Jimmy is survived by his wife Rhoda, and three sons, Falou (who lives at Meherazad), Sarosh (Bombay), and Merwan (Matamoros, PA).

To request a catalog, write to: Avatar Meher Baba Lending Audio Library c/o Lynne/Steve Berry 267 Hanover Drive Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Jimmy was always fond of telling the story when he was much younger and very seriously ill, he worried about who would provide for his family if he suddenly died. Baba had told him that he would grow old and walk with a stick. So Jimmy, even though he didn't get around so well in later years, always tried to avoid using a walking cane.

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I knew Jimmy for more than 20 years, and there are so many stories that it is difficult to know what to say. But I distinctly remember one time in the earlier years, playing chess with him on Meherabad Hill during Silence Day. During one game, I became so engrossed in the play, that when he made a certain move, I blurted out "but you'll lose your knight." He made a shushing sign to remind me that it was Silence Day, and I conveyed to him again by signs that he could take the move back, as it was an obvious mistake. He said it was alright, that he would live with it, and I was unable to persuade him to rescind his move. So I took the knight, we continued, and two moves later he checkmated me.

Simple and yet so deep. A jewel in His Love. -Alain Youelip

KEKINALAVALA, 1909-February 10, 1996, Baba's dear "Keki" passed into his Beloved's arms after complications from a surgery. Keki was born in Navasari in the State of Gujarat. He heard about Baba and became a "lover" before he actually met Baba in Dehra Dun in 1942. He recalled, "We were made to stand before the small curtained room as stage actors standing on the stage before the curtain is lifted. At exactly 2 p.m. the curtain was drawn aside revealing Baba sitting cross-legged in a corner with Jal Kerawala." He and Keki Desai were forbidden to say anything to Baba and Nalavala states, "It didn't matter because they were too stunned to say anything anyway." Nalavala remembers seeing "the glittering sight of the rising Sun" and being "dumbed, numbed, and stunned!" Keki was the contact person for Baba arrangements during the New Life period in the Debra Dun, Hardwar and Rishikesh areas. He met Baba frequently after the New Life. In recent years he and wife Freiny lived in Bangalore. Freiny came to Baba shortly after Keki. They were married for 55 years and devoted themselves to Baba. He is survived by Freiny, son Nosh Anzar and daughter Mahroukh who now live in New Jersey.

OLIVE PITT, a long-term English Baba Lover returned to her Beloved Baba on Saturday, 24 January 1996 after a long and devoted life of service. Her life is reflective of the many "drop souls" the Beloved called to His service, who did so quietly and unstintingly and enduring all in His love - the ''unsung heroes" that are the heart of His service. She was willing to go where ever her Master called and thus, even when traveling was difficult for her, she came to Japan in 1995, "turning the key" along with Katie Irani and giving the emerging Meher Baba Group in Japan a beautiful view of long-term service and the Love of a true old-timer for the Beloved. Her inspiration and love lives on in our hearts. -Ann Speirs, Tokyo, Japan

BANUMASI, Eruch's aunt passed away to her Beloved on Baba's Birthday, '96 at 3:30 a.m. in Meherabad. She spent most of her life close to and deeply devoted to

Olive was a teacher, a wife, a mother, a grandmother, a friend, but first and foremost she was a Baba lover.

Baba路ro

Meher Baba was the heart and soul of her existence and she lived as she felt she should - His Way. She was not involved in the "Big Picture" because she knew the REAL PICTURE and so she gave her all to being real in the unreal world.

THANKSGIVING DAY AT MEHER MOUNT, by Marguerite Poley [OJai, California]

Olive was an original and a character and her way touched so many people so quietly and yet with such power. I have been privileged to have Olive in my life for almost 30 years and she, Mollie Eva and Hilde Halpern are the unsung jewels of His crown. Olive could laugh and joke and giggle and be a part of everything and I shall remember one of our last times together when she took her immediate and adopted family to a pantomime and she was egging us all on to hiss at the villain and sing along with the best of them and enjoying an ice cream in the interval.

JAI BABA dear Baba lovers, Thursday, November 23rd provided us with a most beautiful day, warm, yet cool under the huge Meher Mount oak trees. (Continued on page 20)

16


April 27, Saturday 8:00 p.m. FILM NIGHT Our own dear Adele Wolkin promises to dig deep into her archives to find some choice offerings for this evening.

CALENDAR OF EVENTS April 6, Saturday, 7:00 p.m. SPRING FLING EASTER CELEBRATION Come one, come all to this potluck Easter celebration where we celebrate one of God's sojourns in the Middle East and raffle off a round trip ticket to India to visit the Master's tomb. Please bring your favorite edibles to share. We will have a special egg hunt and guest(s).

May 4, Saturday 8:00 p.m. SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY AND THE AVATAR E=MC2, Quantum Physics, DNA discovered. The automobile, the airplane, motion pictures, radio and television; lasers, rocket ships, computers and satellites. All this and more during the Avatar's life. Let's explore the implications for Baba's work and for the evolution of humanity's consciousness. Led by Ambassador Harry Thomas

April 13, Saturday 6:00 p.m. FARSI LANGUAGE MEETING This meeting is devoted to the discussion of Beloved Baba. All are welcome. Coordinated by Dr. Mahmoud Ajang.

May 11, Saturday 6:00 p.m. FARSI LANGUAGE MEETING This meeting is devoted to the discussion of Beloved Baba. All are welcome. Coordinated by Dr. Mahmoud Ajang.

April 13, Saturday 8:00 p.m. SGM: CAPITAL CAMPAIGN VOTE Well, here it is! The fmal discussion, vote and tabulation (accountants Err, Ah & Nee), to determine if the Southern California membership wants and can fund and support a permanent site at this time.

May 11, Saturday 8:00 p.m. PERMANENT SITE CAMPAIGN KICK-OFF EVENT Well, if the response to the April 13th vote was a positive one, this should be one heck of an evening. Same place at same time. Stay tuned.

April 20, Saturday 8:00 p.m. ART! Come share in an evening devoted to the reciting of Baba's prayers, the singing of his artis (devotional songs) and other songs and offerings of love and inspiration. Bring your favorite song, guitar, harmonica, kazoo, washboard, etc.

May 18, Saturday 8:00 p.m. MEHERA'S DAY REMEMBERED Tonight we celebrate Baba's beloved Mehera, "The purest soul in the universe." Details forthcoming.

April 27, Saturday 6:00 p.m. FARSI LANGUAGE MEETING This meeting is devoted to the discussion of Beloved Baba. All are welcome. Coordinated by Dr. Mahmoud Ajang.

May 25, Saturday 6:00 p.m. FARSI LANGUAGE MEETING This meeting is devoted to the discussion of Beloved Baba. All are welcome. Coordinated by Dr. Mahmoud Ajang.

Program suggestions? Interested in presenting a program, artwork or music? Call Richard Arthur at (310) 208-4764. For directions to any of the events call the numbernoted, or call the Baba Center at (310) 474-9454.

May 25, Saturday 8:00 p.m. VIDEO NIGHT Guess.

17


friendship and free food hosted by the inimitable Fred (McMan) Stankus..ya oughta.. And if you have well, we'll see you there.

June 1, Saturday 8:00 p.m. ARTS FESTIVAL All those involved in and interested in the communication arts, film, television, radio, stage, music, painting, sculpture, literature, etc. are invited to come and share of their lives and work in the light of our dear Beloved Master Avatar Meher Baba at this our first annual Arts Festival. Call Richard at (310) 208-4764 for any special arrangements; display, exhibit, performance.

June 22, Saturday 6:00 p.m. FARSI LANGUAGE MEETING This meeting is devoted to the discussion of Beloved Baba. All are welcome. Coordinated by Dr. Mahmoud Ajang. June 22, Saturday 8:00 p.m. BWN: BABA WORLD NEWS All right you brooding armchair intellectuals, closeted CNN addicts and Web site marauders, this is your night. Come share, exchange and discuss world news facts and information. But remember, "The mind is like a barking dog, toss it a few crumbs to keep it quiet." Meher Baba

"Meher Baba"

Painted by

Clair Mataira.

June 8, Saturday 6:00 p.m. FARSI LANGUAGE MEETING This meeting is devoted to the discussion of Beloved Baba. All are welcome. Coordinated by Dr. Mahmoud Ajang. June 8, Saturday 8:00 p.m. HIGHER TRIVIAL PURSUIT What was Mehera's favorite color? What movie did Baba say he'd like to see seven times? Test your Baba knowledge tonight with Jeff Maguire as your host.

Dr Farhad Shafa was a very welcome and interesting guest at our Center in February

June 29, Saturday 8:00 p.m. FILM NIGHT God in human form. Wow! Come see His image captured in celluloid. A first in this cycle of recorded time.

June 15, Saturday 8:00 p.m. GUTTA NIGHT Never before, in history has one man, and his dear lady, given out so many samozas, sung so loud at a dhuni, or seen so many Laker games! If you've never attended one of these evenings of fun, 18


(Continuedfrom page 16) About a hundred people from all over California, and other states, showed up for the event. As arrivals kept coming, glad greetings and sounds of lai Baba filled the air.

reason for saying thanks on this Thanksgiving Day. It was a wonderful idea. I loved it. Katie looked radiant during the entire time. There's her love, HIS LOVE, her wit, her humor...(how Baba loves this!). Later as daylight began to fade we had what? ..more food? Yes, dearest! Still later, we all stood to say the Prayers, and Katie sang with us.

Joyce Stermer, Adele Wolkin and Katie Irani at Ojai, Thanksgiving 1995. Under a huge oak tree, chairs were set up and appetizers provided as we awaited Katie Irani, and soon she came. How wonderful Katie looked as she sat mnongst us all; so lovingly she greeted each one! Happy faces to be seen everywhere!

Thanksgiving at Ojai.

It was dark when Billy Goodrum escorted Katie to the car for transportation to L.A. ..and the car slowly started down the Mountain, shouts of AVATAR MEHER BABA KI lA!, kept on, and on.

And, for yours truly, I can say without hesitation, that Thanksgiving Day, 1995 is, and will forever remain my best Thanksgiving. Yours (almost) 82 years young, Marguerite

WHAT'S UP AT MEHER MOUNT! By Gigi Driessen

David McNeely and Fred Stankus help prepare the feast.

Since Meher Baba came to Meher Mount in 1956 many people have come to Meher Mount and have relayed that there was a s~ecial quality to the place. 1995 was no exception! Since Agnes Baron left her body, this was the first year that we were on our own, and what a year it was. There was an Easter celebration; a memorial to Rusty Bostwick, where over a hundred of his friends and family remembered him and his love for Baba; and Thanksgiving where more than 100 people enjoyed a sit down feast with Katie Irani. Many came to work either on the house, land or sort through Agnes's things. What

We were to have Thanksgiving dinner at 2 p.m. but it was close to 2:30. All enjoyed a feast (no less than six turkeys were consumed)! All thanks 0 the many, many loving hearts and hanns of dedicated volunteers who graciously served us as well! When the feast was over, Fred Stankus asked all participants to stand-up, one by one, and tell his or her

19

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a job it is to keep up a center plus over 160 acres of property. To this end, there is a Caretaker, Michel SaintSuplice and a work retreatant, Daniela Brischel. If you want to volunteer some time to do gardening, clearing of land or work on the Center, call (805) 640-0000 or write Meher Mount, 9902 Sulphur Mountain Road, Ojai, CA 93023 and make arrangements to stay overnight or....?

/

"

were called to visit Baba from around 8 a.m. until noon, and then again after lunch until 6 p.m. or so. Mansari was one of those lucky ones, and she came frequently. Baba used to sit and talk and play with everyone, and sometimes people would sing songs, etc. Mansari's memory of recent events is fading, but she remembers these early times quite frequently now. One day, a large group of people were slttmg and talking with Baba. Baba indicated that he wanted to sleep for a short time, and he proceeded to lie down on a blanket on the floor and go to sleep, in front of everyone, most of whom were already sitting on the floor. After a short time, people began to notice a small pink cloud, maybe 12-18 inches in diameter, hovering and shifting back and forth about two or three feet over Baba's head. Everyone was dumbstruck and very silent, so as not to disturb Baba's sleep. Mansari said that even the children were speechless and fascinated with the little pink cloud which moved about over Baba. After a few minutes, Baba woke up and the cloud disappeared. As far as Mansari can remember, Baba never explained anything about the cloud, other than maybe to have said that it was something involved with this work.

,------'

"

'I

mebeR moant; Rendering of new Center at Meher Mount

The torch has been passed along and we are still in the formative stages as to what direction Meher Mount will go. We want to attract all, and in so doing some are attracted to Meher Baba-1996 presented new and different challenges, If you would like to be involved with Meher Mount, or in the preparation for the 40th Anniversary of Baba coming to Meher Mount on August 2nd, or you would like to have a function at Meher Mount contact Bing Heckman at 2242 Greer Road, Palo Alto, CA 94303 or call (415) 494-6443.

ABRAHAM AND MOSES by John Page Over the decades there have been many questions among Baba lovers about the two Jewish prophets and patriarchs, Abraham and Moses. What did Baba Himself say about them? Why aren't they mentioned in Baba's message, "The Highest of the High" when He listed many of His past incarnations? Well, we've got the goods for you! Beginning in 1956, Beloved Baba's sister Mani started sending a "family letter" on an occasional basis to His lovers in the West. They began as attempts to keep His lovers in the West abreast of information about the Beloved's automobile accident in Satara and His subsequent (but never full) recovery. These family letters eventually totaled 82, the last one being distributed shortly after Baba's dropping the body. The Society for Avatar Meher Baba later performed a great service for Baba lovers everywhere by publishing them as a book. They were later republished by Sheriar Press and are available at our Center. Originally, each letter from Mani was sent to Meher Spiritual Center at Myrtle Beach. They would then copy and send them to the group heads at various centers and groups. This book is

In God we trust, Jai Baba!

THE PINK CLOUD by James Cox [From the Internet] I just heard this rather interesting Baba story from Mansari that I had never heard or read before. If this is in print, could someone please let me know where? The time was the early 30s and Baba was staying at Naval Talati's large house, Shivial Motilal, in Bombay. Everyday, a large group of men, women and children 20


chock full of intimate glimpses into Baba's life, especially at Meherazad and should be on every Baba lover's bookshelf. There is just nothing like "listening" to Mani give a special peek into Baba's day to day quite personal life with His mandali. Also included are wonderful vignettes of various darshan programs from the late 50's and 60's.

High" discourse. However, it must be remembered that in that discourse Baba said, "Of the most recognized and much worshiped manifestations of God as Avatar, that of Zoroaster is the earlier-having been before Rama, Krishna, Buddha, Jesus and Mohammed." This of course does not exclude other incarnations of His, just gives a list of the "most recognized and much worshiped manifestations." There are measurable gaps also in this list. Baba has stated that Rama's advent was 7,000 years ago while Krishna's took place 5,000 years in the past. Certainly there is at least one advent between them while between Krishna at 5,000 years ago and Buddha we have another large gap that was filled by who knows how many advents?

In the 16th Family Letter, written from Meherazad and dated 4th February 1958, Mani says, "One of the things remaining vividly with us is The Ten Commandments that Baba wanted His group to see, and what was more significant saw it Himself, although He has not been to a picture for a very long time. He went with the mandali, but stayed only up to the part when Moses sees God on Mount Sinai. Baba liked the picture very much, said it was very well played and done, and that it had much to give to those who could receive it. He told us that Ramses in his next incarnation entered the spiritual path, and that the old king received mulct; because he took Moses' name when dying. Baba then smilingly recalled Cecil B. de Mille's meeting with Him in 1932, saying that he was a very nice man." Baba and the mandali were in Bombay at the time (the last time He visited Bombay, I believe) of seeing the movie.

Fortunately, while on a recent trip to India, I recorded Eruch giving Baba's explanation about Abraham. Those who have spent much time in Mandali Hall at Meherazad know about the interruptions, digressions, etc., so this is naturally, an edited version of what Eruch said. Nevertheless, it is accurate. The date is January 6, 1996, and we are in Mandali Hall. There was a child there named Abraham. Davana greeted him and Eruch said, "Here is Abraham, the Ancient One." Davana then noted that in Time magazine it was recently said that Abraham may have been a myth. Someone piped in that some say that Abraham was Zoroaster. Eruch then said, "This is what I heard from Baba at the time when He dictated that message called 'The Highest of the High.' Have you heard that message-have you seen it? It is a good one. So, naturally when He is dictating the message, there He has given a series of the advents, you see and at that time I reminded Him of Abraharn being an Avatar. 'Baba you have not mentioned Abraham.' Baba retorted that Abraham should not be mentioned as it would be confusing as Abraham is confused with Zoroaster having come again. So don't put that in. I said, 'All right.' What was the confusion? When Zoroaster was alive He said (as He does in each advent) I'll come again, I'll come again. So Zoroaster has also said I'll come again as Soshyant. So at the time when Abraham appeared on the scene, those Zoroastrians who were there said that Zoroaster has come again. So He was taken to be Zoroaster. Zoroaster has come to mean Zoroaster and Abraham both. So don't mention Abraham, Baba said."

I remember in another place Baba is quoted to have said that the burning bush was symbolic for God and that Moses was on the 6th plane, but couldn't stand the light of God and therefore did not make it to the 7th plane. Baba is quoted elsewhere as saying that when a 6th planer drops the body he gets realization anyway. However, without hard reference sources, that remains in the "maybe file". No doubt some astute reader will find the reference(s) and notify the editor. Also Baba said that the Ten Commandments were and are actually internally written in the hearts and souls of all humans and that the old testament tablets are an external symbolization of what is already inside each of us. Whether Baba meant that there were never really "outer tablets" I don't know. Well, what about Abraham-the "Father of Nations?" We know that the Mastery In Servitude emblem originally did not have the Star of David but that Baba assented to some of His Jewish lovers' wishes for it to be added and it was portrayed this way on the front of the old 3 volume set of the Discourses. Baba almost never mentioned Abraham, the father of the Jews, and many Jews felt a little irked, if not confused at Abraham not being included in Baba's list in "The Highest of the

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21


CHILDREN'S CORNER

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to get a lick of his own advice.

Let me rest assured When I was born into this world I lost the master's bet. I traded in my far sight to recite the alphabet.

With string my tongue and teeth were tied so I would hear your words, But when I saw you listening, I could rest assured.

I was told to give my armor to the one who forged my steel, But it helped my feet stay on the floor and gave my form appeal.

Ad hominea. Some things never change. The kings still bark, The dogs all run, And the servants will obey.

Adhominea for the darkness dread and fear, That stands before me laughing while the sun shines in the mirror.

Every day I'm born again And every day I ride, Keeping fans upon my heart, and a pilot light inside.

I used to tell my story: my hang-ups and grief, To any open ear, to give myself relief.

Each day I march into the world to earn a little pay, At the front of the procession, Meher Baba leads the way. -Bryan West

But the coarseness of these words wouldn't blend with any form, So I fled in eager violence to submit them to the storm.

Your Reality I'm caught in the world of illusion I'm trapped in the realms of my mind I search for the truth in this dream world of yours But only You can I find Whatever I do, you're always there in my mind & my heart This world was made for one purpose alone And you knew it right from the start The beauty of your Reality is for what I long Baba Baba please tell me how many times must I sing your song Lord Oh Lord please tell me how long have I Sung your song Living this life that You've given me I've run into so many things But the greatest is the gift that You've given me now Is the love - a love that sings the days, the years, the countless hours I'll gladly wait once more Just to be with You in your heaven alone Like a bird I would gladly soar

I thought I'd give my hours and the lock at my front door, But I can't reserve my livelihood for the tired and the poor. Adhominea for the humming birds and mice. While the crows eat crow and the pilgrims row Across the Arctic ice. When pilgrims came from far away, They freed themselves of scorn, They longed for land to breech upon and a home to keep them warm. But what the new land asked for was to manifest a feat: Tame the tiger with a wire And win the worlds seat. Adhominea For the soldiers rolling dice. The king will soon side with the pawn

--- Christopher Franklin 23


entertainingly, and as inspiringly as possible. The wider the appeal the better.

ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT This article inaugurates a new column in the LSLP. Readers are invited and encouraged to submit news and information regaraing various art events, happenings and projects that they think might be of interest to our readers; music, films, theater, fine arts, etc. Please send your submissions to Richard Arthur c/o MY EDt., 615 Midvale Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90024.

The self in fact, is a limitless, indivisible, spiritual essence-eternal in its nature and infinite in its resources. The greatest romance possible in life is to discover this Eternal Reality in the midst of infinite change.. There is no better medium to portray this than the motion pictures. Plays which inspire those who see them to greater understanding, truer feelings, better lives need not necessarily have anything to do with so called religion..Real spirituality is best portrayed in stories ofpure love, ofselfless service, oftruth realized and applied to the most humble circumstances of our daily lives, raying out into manifold expressions, through home and business, school and university, studio and laboratory - producing everywhere a constant symphony ofbliss.

By the time this issue reaches its readers world attention will have been focused, to an even greater extent, on the cinema. This will be largely as a result of the awards given out by a peer-run member organization of ind~~try professionals interested in supporting and recogmzmg excellence, called the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

This is the highest practicality. To portray such circumstances on the screen will make people realize that the spiritual life is something to be lived not talked about, and that it, and it alone, will produce the peace and love and harmony which we seek to establish as the constant ofour lives.

In 1932 Meher Baba was to spend one week in Hollywood during which time He gave this statement: I do not need to tell you who are engaged in the production and distribution of motion pictures what a power you hold in your hands, nor do I doubt that you are fully alive to the responsibilities which the wielding of that power involves. He who stimulates the imagination of the masses can move them in any direction he chooses, and there is no more powerful an instrumentfor stimulating their imagination than motion pictures.

Adds Bhau Kalchuri, in his biography Lord Meher, from which the previous excerpt was taken, Vol. 5 pp. 16561665. It is certain that Baba will 'speak' in Hollywood. From there the melody ofhis Word will spread throughout the world throughfilms. Only Hollywood will be able to delineate Baba's life story to the world, which will listen to his Song's resonance because of it. His Song, though echoless, merges within itself all the echoes ofthe world! And in him are all the images ofthe world!

People go to the theater to be entertained. If the play is strong, they come away transformed. They surrender their hearts and minds to the author, producer, director and stars, and follow the example which they see portrayed before their eyes more than they realize themselves...

Throughout this past year I have had the opportuni~ of seeing most of the major screen releases. The followmg is a list of those which I felt were stand outs in some way or another.

Man must be awakened to his true nature. He must see that all material expression depends upon and flows from a spiritual being...

Antonia's Line [NetherlandsJ How to Make an American Quilt The Brothers McMullen A Little Princess Babe The American President

Now, how can the motion pictures help man attain this realization? The character of the film need not be changed. Love, romance and adventure are themselves fundamental. They should be portrayed as thrillingly, as

24


Dangerous Minds Leaving Las Vegas Richard III Something To Talk About A Walk in The Clouds The White Balloon Pocahontas Wild Bill The Scarlet Letter Braveheart Cry, The Beloved Country French Kiss

that would have crumbled almost any 15 year old. And the story builds from there. Gift of God is somewhat unique. It tells the very personal story of Baba working

[Richard is an actor, musician/composer and is also the Assistant Theater Manager for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.]

REVIEWS Arnavaz Dadacbanji

BOOK REVIEWS in Arnavaz's life, both the outer and the inner, and how she struggled with all the emotions that are involved in living ones life for Baba; from learning how to obey His orders, to falling in love with Him. It is a very mature work, not mincing any words when it comes to confessing how hard it was to obey Baba when His wish was completely opposed to her own, and how Baba inwardly directed her life when she learned to surrender completely to Him. Gift of God is a continuous inspiration and will help many to face situations that seem impossible to bear. It is real life, all the nuts and bolts and guts of it. [$18 paperback, 242 pages]

Gift of God by Arnavaz Dadachanji Reviewed by Deborah Smith In the early 80's Dara Irani interviewed Arnavaz on audio tape asking her about life with Baba. Then aBaba lover from California, Evie Lindermann, went over the information with Arnavaz and had the tapes transcribed for her in the USA. At that point Arnavaz put them away thinking that someday her family would publish it. Unexpectedly Baba prompted Arnavaz to write this book and I happened to ask her one day, when I was living in India, if she needed help doing anything. After a long thoughtful pause she said yes, and for the next year I spent several days a week with her going over her life, clarifying story after story, so that the details were clear and the feeling behind each experience was conveyed. Then I returned to USA and worked with Nancy Wall in Tucson for a year and a half polishing the form. And finally after all the choices of pictures, fonts, etc., etc. the book is published.

BABA ART FOR SALE Wodin's Baba Pins When 1 first discovered the Meher Center in Myrtle Beach, I traveled there from my home in Kentucky several times a year. On the long drive, 1 not only thought about the Center, the lake, the beach and Baba's atmosphere, I also longed to hit Kitty's book room where I could load up on Baba pins, books and photos. (1 was greedy to own

Arnavaz met Baba when she was 8 years old, through her Uncle Chanji. The following seven years were full of times with Baba but mostly observing His ways of working with others. Arnavaz's time came and Baba began her training with a sudden and upsetting order

25


from her newest CD/tape After All This Time. Our wonderful Center guest for January 13 from the bay area was joined by my favorite local guitarist Michael Campagna for an evening of musical delights. Some old favorites like Keep Me Near and Beloved God prompted audible expressions of joy from our audience. Marguerite Poley asked Cindy to sing Beloved God at her wake while we dance in the streets!

any Baba paraphernalia I could get my hands on.) But every time I got there, Kitty declared she'd just run out of Baba button-pins. Everyone was wearing them but me. One guy had hundreds pinned to the cloth ceiling of his VW beetle. I envied them but he would not part with a single one. Recently, I was in a boutique where I discovered beautiful, artistically made jewelry pins of antique postage stamps under glass with copper foil edges. I was so pleased with their tasteful craftsmanship that I had an idea of my own: "Imagine how they would look with miniature prints of Wodin's Baba art in them?"

Cindy's charm of putting her lovely poetry to music is resoundingly expressed in her new album. And for those of you who love to sing along, the words are always printed in her album jacket cover. This time looking very much like the hand-painted boots she wore to entertain us. This lady is multi-talented!

I tracked down the man who made the pins, hired him to make several hundred for me with the Wodin art. I could hardly wait to see them and show them off to the Baba community. They now can be purchased at the Meher Baba Bookstore in L.A., the Sheriar Book room and Wodin's studio in Myrtle Beach. The scenes now available are: Baba and Three Blind Mice; Baba and the Apple Lady; Baba and a Pair O'Ducks; Baba and the Pea Babies; Baba and Baby Chicks; Baba and Eggies; Baba and Mani Flying a Kite; and one of Baba with Morning Glories. The average about 1-Y2" x 1-%". They sell for $22 each. -Steve Jameson

Cindy Lowe at the Avatar Meher Baba Center of Southern California

AUDIO TAPE REVIEWS Especially endearing were Mehera's Wailing, Fever River and the title song After All This Time. Thank you dear Cindy from all of us fortunate enough to share once again in your creative expression of Baba's love.

After All This Time by Cindy Lowe Reviewed by Patty Thome

[CD $15.00, Tape $10.00] Once again we had the pleasure of listening to Cindy Lowe as she strummed the heartstrings with excerpts

26


Thank You Beloved Baba and Don't Have A Broken Heart by Kalyan (Tony Patemiti) Reviewed by Harry Thomas

This combination of guitar and voice fulfills the task of rendering his compositions. All in all, a splendid tape that speaks the feelings of one who loves the Avatar. The Don't Have A Broken Heart tape, although intended for a general audience, nevertheless contains many songs that are clearly aimed at the Beloved. Several songs, in fact nine, also appear on Thank You Beloved Baba.

I had the pleasure of meeting Tony Patemiti in India where I was introduced to his singing and compositional style. On several occasions I heard him sing at the Samadhi and was moved by his songs. On a later trip to India I had another opportunity to experience the same.

The tape is a mixture between love songs to dear ones as in Maxine and Love is Too Much and songs sung to the Most High like If You Truly Hear which uses the line, "Hear my prayer Lord." Many of the other songs are devotional, but phrased so anyone could appreciate them.

In our talks, there was mention of a possible tape, but alas, nothing materialized. This has now changed. Tony, whose artistic name is Kalyan, has produced two cassettes whose titles are: Thank You Beloved Baba and Don't Have a Broken Heart. The former is a Baba tape, written for the Beloved and His lovers. The latter contains several songs from this tape, but is intended, I presume, for a non-Baba lover audience.

Overall, the tunes are lively and spring from an inner well of authentic praise and surrender. Either tape could be a refreshing addition to one's collection. Kalyan has given the Baba lover and the non-Baba lover world a double-dose of heart sprung gifts.

Let's focus on Thank You Beloved Baba, (words, perhaps we could all say more often). Listening to the tape, one becomes aware of the bouncy nature of the songs. There's a wonderful perkiness that emotes a vibration of celebration throughout. Certainly, the songs are devotional, but the tempo for most of the songs is lively and the mood light lighthearted, yet, the sincerity of that devotion is apparent.

THE AWAKENER by Raphael Rudd Reviewed by JLM Raphael Rudd, composer, arranger, pianist and harpist extraordinaire, has come full circle. The previously unreleased The Awakener, recorded at Eel Pie Studios in London from October 1978 through May 1980, with Pete Townshend, Phil Collins and Annie Haslam, signifies the beginning for him of a cycle which had its seeds planted when Rudd first met Townshend back in 1977. Avatar Meher Baba was the bridge.

The title track has a folk quality and it uses catchy lyrics, there's the line, "You gave my heart back to my soul." Oh Sweet Mehera is a personal reflection upon the beloved of the Beloved, and Kalyan thanks her because, you listened to my song. lt

It â&#x20AC;˘â&#x20AC;˘â&#x20AC;˘

There are songs of great ones, Ram and Rabia. Wild Mare of Spirit is a delightful tune and the closeness in sound between Mare and Meher invites an inward grin. All in Time was my favorite composition and it too had that carefree and joyous sound that most of Kalyan's songs possess.

Baba personally blessed young Raphael at a tender two years of age, when he placed his hands upon Rudd's head and recited His prayer for the boy. Raphael began studying piano at the age of 10. His early lessons went poorly as he insisted on rewriting the music to every piece his instructors assigned. Throughout his teens, Raphael totally committed himself to music, practicing the piano at least 8 hours each day, eventually destroying the tendons in his left hand. Instead of giving up the instrument, he devised an unusual right handed technique that would allow him to continue playing.

On Side Two the Prayer ofRepentance is Baba's Prayer set to song and Good Morning Baba is an acappella chant to our Beloved.

On the technical side, Kalyan's guitar playing is crisp and passionate demonstrating a command of the instrument, and the singing resonant and enthusiastic.

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Raphael, always a Marx Brothers fan, especially of Harpo, extended his musical interests to include the harp, a natural extension given his piano technique. He was accepted into the Manhattan School of Music, where he earned both a Bachelor's and Master's degree.

of certain backing tracks, sang on The Awakening, and was a technical consultant on the entire project that would eventually become The Awakening album. He brought in Phil Collins to play drums and Renaissance's Annie Haslam, to sing. One year later, Raphael arranged the brass section on the hit single Rough Boys from Pete's solo record Empty Glass, which also included the hits Let My Love Open The Door and A Little Is Enough.

At 21 years of age, Raphael Rudd was asked by Pete Townshend to record with him in London. Over the next two years, Rudd would come of age as a musical wunderkind, conducting an orchestra of musicians from the London Philharmonic and the London Symphony for the soundtrack to the Who film Quadrophenia. Townshend wrote, "Raphael Rudd and 1 met because of our mutual interest in the Indian spiritual master Avatar Meher Baba. When about fIVe years old Raphael met Meher Baba, who took the child's hands in his own and gazed into his eyes. Later, when Raphael became a musician and dedicated his work to his master, it became clear to everyone that Meher Baba had inspired the childforever. "1 didn't meet Meher Baba in the flesh. But 1 was pleased to be able to work with Raphael on this recording project that was to be dedicated to Meher Baba. "While working on this record, 1 was doing a number of other things, including working on the soundtrack ofthe movie Quadrophenia. Indeed Raphael orchestrated the final scene ofthe film and conducted the orchestra with great authority despite being only 21 years old at the time. 1 regarded myself as Raphael's musical mentor during that time. Today, we inspire each other on a more equal footing. 1 am greatly influenced by Raphael's piano style - especially his modality.

After returning to the States, Raphael joined Renaissance, the English progressive rock group that greatly influenced him as a youth. He remained their keyboardist for ten years, while also recording his own solo work. In the Fall of '95, Raphael returned to India for the first time in more than 20 years. It was a very emotional trip and served to rekindle Raphael's spiritual roots which he had denied for many years. When he returned, he felt the time was finally right to release The Awakening.

"To this day Raphael and myself regard ourselves as fellow voyagers on the path to God - who we see manifested clearly in the perfect life and continuing compassionate spiritual presence of Avatar Meher Baba. This might seem romantic, and it is ofcourse, but whatever we like to believe as spiritual seekers, and however lost or vain we might become in our pursuit of art and fame, we are both utterly certain that we are merely channels for the will of God. "

The Awakening showcases Raphael's full and textural sound in an orchestral rock oriented style he was experimenting with at the time. The songs encompass a full spectrum of moods, documenting the roller coaster ride of the period. "Homage" pays tribute to Dave Brubeck and Keith Emerson, both strong influences on Rudd, making reference to the Brubeck track "Blue Rondo a la Turk," later redone by Emerson and his

Raphael Rudd is the only musician Pete Townshend has ever actively supported in this way. During this period, Pete helped Raphael record his own album of songs, dedicated to Meher Baba. Townshend acted as producer

28


band, The Nice, in "Rondo '69." "Seasons," the album's first single, was written by Raphael with Annie Haslam's voice in mind, long before he ever met her. "Travels" was written for the harp and then turned into a piano and drum piece (Phil Collins plays drums here), while "The Game" is Rudd's first attempt at writing for a chamber orchestra, including strings, flute, piano, etc. It's theme is based on a little card Meher Baba had written called "The Game," meaning the game of life and his teachings on how to approach it. Raphael made the song an instrumental in a nod to Baba's vow of silence. "Moments" was created for piano and oboe, giving the feeling of moods in time. "Magic Grace," "Willow Song" and "The Awakening" are all filled with great light and hope. "The Awakening" was written in three distinct parts and is sung by Annie Haslam and Pete Townshend. A mystical feeling runs through the piece, starting with the first part being the beginning of time, flowing into the introduction of man, and man realizing that a being or power greater than himself exists. It closes with a piano solo signifying that we are that higher being ourselves.

arose in his mind a new longing to have the realization of God as Truth. He became so restless that he wanted to have the supreme experience instantaneously. One day he came to a Sage, who had just newly arrived at the village on a casual visit. Approaching the sage with great respect, the man said, "I have wandered as a pilgrim from one place to the other; and 1 have also visited many sages and saints to get their help and blessings. But 1 am nowhere nearer the fulfillment of my one desire, and 1 have waited long enough. Now 1 approach you in full surrenderance to get from you such light and help as 1 may." The man said this in all sincerity, believing that he was really ready to receive the highest spiritual experience, not knowing that he was really thoroughly unprepared for the receiving of such a vast thing. He did not know what he was asking for. So, in order to bring home to him how he really needed much further preparation, the Sage first took out of his own robe a precious stone which looked like a marble. Then handing it over to the man, said, "Take this stone; and bring from the market five pounds of vegetables." The devotee, who knew not the real value of the precious stone, took it for ordinary marble. And, in his ignorance, he began to hesitate, thinking that it was no use starting on an endeavor which, in his view, was doomed to fail. However, when the Sage asked him not to bring in his own considerations, but just to proceed about doing what he was asked to do, he decided to try.

The tape is $10, the CD is $15.

iEbe .market for

~ob

by Meher Baba from Sparks ofthe Truth There is no market for providing the realization of God. And even if anyone were to offer such realization, there would be extremely few customers for it. The world is so immersed in ignorance that it has no capacity to assess the value of spiritual Truth. Yet the Masters have again and again tried to help the fumbling and bungling masses of humanity by describing Godhood in a language which they could understand. By descending to their level, only some glimpses of that Truth can be imparted. However, for the most part, those who are thickly covered with ignorance remain impervious even to this bestowal, because their minds have become stiff and unyielding due to the usual worldly habits of thought and feeling.

When the devotee asked for five pounds of vegetables in exchange for the stone, every one laughed at him for expecting so much in barter for such an insignificant thing as a piece of marble. One, however, thought that it might be a nice thing for his child to play with, but he offered only four pounds of vegetables. The devotee returned to the Sage with an account of what had happened. But the Sage now asked him to bring, in exchange, five pounds of sweets. When he went to the market on this new errand, every one again laughed at him. But there was one, who wanted to set a precious stone in his ring but he could not afford to purchase it from the market of precious stones. Now, though he believed that this stone was only a marble, he thought that he might set it in his ring as a false jewel. So he agreed to purchase it in barter but offered only four pounds of sweets. The devotee again came back to the Sage and recounted to him what had happened during this second attempt.

The world mostly fails to appreciate the value of the really important things. And even among those who appreciate it, most persons are held back from deriving any benefit from them. This may be illustrated by means of a story. A devotee of God spent much of his life in worship in one village. After years of worship, there

29


The Sage now asked him to fetch from some goldsmith one hundred rupees as the price of the stone. When he went to the market on this third errand, every one again laughed at him. One goldsmith, however, thought that it might tum out to be a genuine precious stone; but he offered only ninety rupees for it. The devotee was now coming to the end of his patience. In all his three attempts, he had failed. So he requested the Sage to put it back on his own robe since he could never succeed in getting for that stone exactly what the Sage wanted.

change, because they are thoroughly dissatisfied with what they have been able to make of life. The goldsmith, who offered ninety rupees, is like a seeker who knows that there is a higher life and wants to have it, but who does not have sufficient earnestness to make any real effort for it. And the Jeweler, who knew the real value of the precious stone but offered only eight hundred rupees, is like an advanced soul who knows the real worth of eternal truth, but who wants to have it without giving its real price, which is the surrenderance of separate ego-life. He expects to cheat the Master by offering to do many other things which fall considerably short of his minimum standard.

The Sage, however, now asked him to try to get one thousand rupees from some jeweler. So he went to a jeweler with that stone. The jeweler immediately recognized it to be a really valuable precious stone and knew that its real price could in no case be less than twenty thousand rupees. He thought that here was the chance of his life to exploit someone who was totally ignorant about the truth of jewels. So, in his uncontrolled greed and desire to exploit to the utmost, he offered only eight hundred rupees, thus losing the real bargain.

The Sage then closed as follows, ". And you, my dear man, are like those unfortunate ones who refuse to learn from experience. In your successive errands, you had ample opportunity to note that the stone which I had given you was being valued at an increasingly higher rate, as you went to more and more thoughtful persons. But you still clung to your initial belief that it had no value. You further had the audacity to throwaway a really valuable thing in your desperateness. You need more experience and need to learn from that experience and also from the experience of others. Come to me after you gain sufficient experience."

Now, the devotee lost all his patience; and throwing away the stone, said to the Sage, "I came to you for realizing the highest Truth and attaining union with God, not for being harassed in fruitless errands. Either give me that for which I aspire or allow me to go back to my own usual duties." The Sage then replied "You can never attain unity with God unless you have inexhaustible patience. If you can not stand an ordinary trial like this, there is not the slightest chance of your being able to stand the severe ordeals which a real aspirant of the most High must successfully face. It is best for you to go back to the world. But before you do that, I would like you to gather the meaning of what you have seen during the four attempts you made to dispose of the precious stone."

Those who can appreciate the real worth of the life spiritual are few. But even among these few, most persons continue to be swayed by petty considerations to which they feel constrained owing to dispositional inclinations. They miss the opportunities of assimilating in their own lives the great values which they perceive as being true. The most that they do about these values is to talk or write about them for others, or think about them as an entertaining way of filling their idle hours. Value is not value unless it is lived. When a man is merely revolving the idea ofvalue in the mind, the idea is exactly like any other purely intellectual concept - a toy to play with.

The Sage then continued, "The dealer who offered four pounds of vegetables is like the multitude who know nothing of that divine immortality which is known as God. They do not even suspect that one day they must possess this invaluable treasure. The dealer in sweets, who offered only four pounds, is like serious-minded or thoughtful persons, who sometime become conscious that their mode of life needs to be changed, but who are content to accept another false thing for the false thing with which they have been fed up. They are not keen about having something real. All that they want is some

The energy which is expanded in mere thinking, talking or writing is like the steam, which escapes through the whistle ofthe railway engine. It makes noise and is even interesting, but it cannot drive the engine itself, even to the extent of one inch. No amount of whistling can move the engine onwards. The steam has to be harnessed intelligently and used in order that it may actually take the engine to its destination. That is why the sages have

30


all along insisted on practice rather than theory. This is particularly true of those who want to know and realize God.

In 1989 I made a video, a pseudo-documentary of Avatar's Abode. My mother, Diana Snow, was one of the original builders, back in The Wet of 1958. Its about an hour long and she takes us all around the property telling us what it was like when Francis Brabazon first bought the land, how it was when Baba came just a few

[Copyright Š Avatar Meher Baba Perpetual Public Charitable Trust, Ahmednagar, India. Used by permission.]

to

AT THE BOOKSTORE by Dina Snow Franklin Jai Baba and welcome to the Bookstore. I apologize to all who's Christmas gift giving plans were thwarted by my being in Australia in December! (Who does she think she is, taking a vacation??!) I know I started off the January issue with this apology, but I had written that in October in anticipation of what may happen. The sales had been so brisk in November I thought everyone must have done their Christmas shopping early. I had no idea there would be such a backlog of orders waiting for me upon my return! It took me until mid-January to catch up. The photo of my totally covered dining room table was only one weeks worth of orders! I promise I'll take my vacation in January next year. It's rather hard to get others to do the work when I am gone, as it is all done from my home. One of these years, when Baba thinks the time is right for us to have a larger Center, with storage rooms, packing rooms, offices, etc., it will be a whole lot easier and we can run it in a more professional manner. Till then, bear with us, we are doing our best.

Dina under a mountain of orders short months later, and compares it to its present state of splendor. Also interviewed are Robert and Lorna Rouse, the Avatar's Abode historians. I just know there is a book in Robert, hopefully we will get to read it one day. They were in their twenties when Baba asked them to give up their city life and come live in the country and look after His property. The video was really just made for myself and my family, but a number of people have requested copies, so $15, (shipping included) will get you a copy.

You may notice more than a few articles about Australia in this issue. I confess. I'm still terribly biased about my Homeland, and I find Avatar's Abode to be one of the most beautiful and tranquil places I have been. But don't take my word for it, read the article from the English Meher Baba Association newsletter, on page 10

We have just received 100 copies of a book that kind of snuck up on us. We had no advance publicity, nothing. One day Naosherwan Anzar calls me to say he has just published the autobiography of Arnavaz Dadachanji! ...one of the Beloved's inner circle of women Mandali. We had no idea that she was even writing it, but you can read about it on page 25, and then call me for your copy.

I had seen the photos (on page 9) of our Beloved looking so very serious, as tho He were contemplating the worst possible scenario for this world of ours, but I had often wondered just what was the story behind them. What were the circumstances under which they were taken? The time and the place? Who took them? To my amazement I found out it was a young boy! See the accompanying interview.

Remember the Bookstore is now online. You can reach me at bababooks@aol.com.

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Some very exciting news in this issue is that you can buy a CD from the Los Angeles Meher Baba Bookstore that is not yet available in Music Plus, The Warehouse or Tower Records, but soon will be. Remember in our last issue I told you about the album that was recorded almost 15 years ago by Raphael Rudd, Pete Townshend and Phil Collins? And that it was going to be released soon? Well the time has arrived. As I write this, the album is in production, and I've been told by Rob Findlay of Wedge Records, that the very first shipment will be to us! I've received a letter from Pete Townshend telling us how he and Raphael come to work together. On page 27 is a bio of Raphael. The album is titled The Awakening and vocals on the eponymous track are by Pete Townshend and Annie Haslam (the latter from the group Renaissance). Here in Los Angeles the radio station called The Wave, FM 94.7, is still playing tracks from Raphael's last, very successful album, Skydancer. (We are out of the CDS for that, but still have the tapes at $10.)

Meher Baba in Zurich, Switzerland in 1930s

Have you fallen in love with that dreamy photo of our Beloved above? Well I have great news for you. You don't have to cut up your LampPost to own it! Since none of those exquisite photos in that magnificent book, Love Personified are available to purchase, we are constantly on the lookout for negatives with which we can fulfill your longing to own more and more pictures of His beautiful face. Toby Mertens, who as a toddler, romped in Baba's arms when He was in Zurich, Switzerland in July of 1934, has so very generously made available to us from his personal collection this negative to use as a fund-raiser for the Los Angeles Baba Center. But far more important than that is the fact that this exquisite photo is now available for all who would like to have it. We have chosen to make greeting cards of it. They are 4 314" x 6Y2" blank inside, with envelope, printed on quality, high gloss stock. We are selling a pack of six cards for $12.00.

This issue of the LampPost should be at your doorstep April 1st...The Awakening may come just a little later, but get your orders in early, it will help us in the reordering process. Tapes are $10 and CDS sell for $15. Depending on just where your interests lie, we have another piece of exciting news: There exists translations of God Speaks, The Godman, Discourses and The Wayfarers in Farsi. At our Center we have quite a large Farsi group that meets twice a month. Many of those present do not speak English, and it has oft been lamented that we have no books for them to read. We have only just been informed of the existence of these translations and they are in varying stages of readiness. God Speaks is typeset and ready for printing, but the others need more work. See the next issue of the LampPost for full details.

Back to the music, we have two new tapes for you, actually three. One is by Cindy Lowe, reviewed on page 26, the tape being $10 and the CD $15. For those of you who appreciate Cindy for the excellent musician and composer that she is, we have her Complete Songbook, music and words from all her tapes for just $12.

Also speaking of Baba books in foreign languages, Companion Books, run by Don Stevens in Europe, have published the full Discourses in Spanish, ($14) and selections form the discourses in Portuguese and French, ($8 each). We also have the delightful sounding Ocoute o Humanite $14, which is the French translation of Listen Humanity edited by Don Stevens, written by Meher Baba. For those wishing something in German, we have Suche Nach Gott, being The Search for God for $8. It consists of a brief biography with limited selections for the Discourses, and other significant quotations.

Next is a newcomer to The Bookstore: two tapes by Tony Paterniti, "Kalyan." I found him on the Internet. We started chatting on the Meher Baba List Serv and then I found out he is a singer. If you like Cat Stevens, you're really going to enjoy Tony's music. It's in that genre. See the review on page 27. His tapes sell for $10 a piece.

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I am so enjoying meeting all the new BLs (as Baba Lovers are called on the 'Net). It is such fun logging on every night to read all the new mail people have posted there. It is a great place to fmd the answer to a question that has been eluding you for ages, to search for long lost friends, and read wonderful excerpts from Baba's books that good people take the trouble to type out for us. If you are on-line, please say hullo--the address is bababooks @ aol.com.

as they talk about Baba. Ted Turner would be very proud of what they have done to the old films. At 40 minute run time, it includes a lot of the old favorite films, but oh how fresh and new they look. Charles Haynes did an excellent job of writing and narrating the script. Included is a delightful scene when Mani tells us how much Baba loved Welcome to My World sung by Jim Reeves and we hear it sung in its entirety. Rafael Villafane composed the music that was heard throughout the film, adding greatly to the beauty of the work.

In our last issue I have my fax number as 310 839BABA. I forgot in Australia and perhaps Europe too, there are no letters on the numbers of the telephone keypad. The number is 839-2222. As it is a dedicated fax line (not connected to my phone) it is available for faxing 24-hours a day.

An item that has been greeted very warmly is the

beautiful new jewelry that comes from the Wodin Studios. A great many of you have bought and framed the beautiful photographic reproductions of his pastels on sandpaper originals. I would like to be able to feature a full page photo of his work in each issue of the LSLP, but of course, his colors are so vibrant and so much a factor in the beauty ofhis art, that a black and white will hardly do justice to it. But nevertheless, you can get an idea of it if you are not familiar with his work. They sell for $46 each.

Those of you who bought the very beautiful book by Carolyn Parker Poetry of Roses know what a joy it is. We found out from Abrams, the publishers, that it was among their 10 best sellers for the Christmas period. Congratulations Carolyn! It does indeed make a beautiful gift for anyone who loves roses and/or poetry. Hardbound, with exquisite full color photos throughout, is sells for a very reasonable $20. It is so wonderful when the art of a Baba lover makes good in the commercial world.

But now, you can wear his beautiful pictures. See page 25 for the story and photos. One of the pictures is from the cover of God Brother, the whimsical painting of Baba flying a kite with a very young Mani holding His hand. That piece sold the minute I put it in the display case. Just a teaser for the next issue of the LSLP, there is a possibility that we will be publishing a Wodin coloring book. I can see more than a few adults picking up the crayons for that one. We will have the full details for you in July. Also an upcoming publishing possibility is a Baba Alphabet book for the young ones (from 3-93). Both are very exciting prospects we are enthusiastically working on.

Talking of best sellers, Simon Reece's tapes - a lot of you sent in orders saying, 'after that sales pitch I just had to buy them.' I really loved the letter I got from M.l. in Texas, and I quote, "I'm faxing you an order for THREE more copies of Simon Reece's tape Echoes of the Infinite. After having listened to it for a week now, I can already tell that #1, I want to give it to some other people, and #2, I will wear this one out in the not too distant future!" So you see, it's not just me. We have just received a new shipment of Echoes and Sun and Moon, so we can now fill your orders, they are $10 each.

That's it for this quarter. See you, in the Bookstore!

The video Eternal Beloved is the other best seller of the past few months. At $50 it is an amazing piece of work very much worth the price. Produced by Meher Prasad, the old footage of Baba has been manipulated to look almost as good as the present time shots of the Mandali

33

Giji Of Go()


"Life is a mighty joke. He who knows this can hardly be understood by others. He who does not know it finds himself in a state of delusion. He may ponder over this problem day and night but will find himself incapable of knowing it. Why? Because people take life seriously and God lightly; whereas we must take God seriously and life lightly. Then we know that we always were the same and will remain the same...The Originator of this joke. This knowledge is not achieved by reasoning, but it is the knowledge of experience." -Meher Baba

~-

--

..........

'.

--.

"Meher Baba 1926" pen & ink by Claire Mataira, 1991. Handmade cards available at the Bookstore. $3.00

Oil painting by Claire Mataira, 1994. $3.00 34


f

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~

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"Baba in the Nursery" by Wodin a 15" x 19" colored photo reproduction of his original creation which sells for $46.00. AVATAR MEHER BABA CENTER OFSOUTHERNCAUFORN~

10808 Santa Monica Boulevard Los Angeles, California 90025

Non-Profit Org. U.S. Postage

PAID Redondo Beach, CA Permit No. 196

DATED MATERIAL, PLEASE EXPEDITE nus NEWSLETTER IS FREE TO ANY WHO REQUEST IT. SINCE IT IS SUPPORTED BY THE COMMUNITY IT SERVES, THE LAMPPOSTS CONTINUED PUBLICAnON RELIES ON YOUR CONTRIBUTIONS.


AVATAR MEHER BABA CE TER OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA

tta J:gveStreetÂŁgmfIbst July - September 1996

,...-------;-------

102 Years

with

Avatar Meher Baba Avatar Meher Baba and Mehera on His birthday in 1956 in Satara, India


Featured Art Works Cards by Carolyn Parker with photos copyright Hermes, $3 each.

page 10

page 8

Photos ofArt by Wodin, $46.

Photo of Mansari by RaLph Jackson. $10 page 27

Now available in the Bookstore


In This Issue Arts and Entertainment: Richard Arthur Announcements: Linda Zavala Bookstore Walli: Dina Snow Franklin Calendar: Richard Arthur Children's Corner: Adele Wolkin Layout & Design: Terry duSoleil Distribution: Clea Sucoff and Harry Thomas

Mm.i1

your artwork, photos, poetry, letters, articles, humor and ideas. Please submit them on 3.5" diskette or typed, double-spaced, single-sided, on clean, white paper. Do not submit originals!

DEADLINES: November 15 (Jan-March) February 27 (April-June) May 15 (July-Sept) August 15 (Oct-Dec) ADDRESS CHANGES I SUBSCRIPTION REQUEST: Clea Sucoff, 3122 Arizona Avenue,#C, Santa Monica, CA 90404 (310) 828-1182.

BOOKSTORE: Dina Franklin, clo Avatar Meher Baba Center of So. California, 10808 Santa Monica Blvd. Los Angeles,CA 90025 Between 7pm & II pm, phone (310) 837-6419; or 24-hourfax (310) 839-BABA. Email: BABABOOKS@AOL.COM DONATIONS: Mail to: Love Street Lamp Post Donation, Avatar Meher Baba Center of Southern Cailfornia, 10808 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90025.

OTHER WEST COAST MEETINGS: In Orange County call Lynne or Steve Berry (714) 966-1262. In the Inland Empire call Jay Mohler (619) 366-9330. In Ojai call Peter Justin (805) 646-4159 (Weds 7:30pm) In Santa Barbara call Donna Karpeles (805) 682-1877. In San Diego call Scott or Anne Makeig (619) 436-7155. In Fresno call Sharon or Phil Scott at (209) 449-0877. In San Francisco call Mary Weiss or Peter Ravazza (510) 221-8724 (Weds,7pm) In Northern California call (510) 845-4339. In Portland, call the Wilson's (503) 873-2048. (Fri, every other Sun). In Sacramento call Marilyn Buehler at (916) 925-4451. In seattle call JoycefTom Geoffroy (206) 283-7027 (Fri, 8 pm).

Features: 2 •..•........ Featured Art Works 4 •........... From the Editorial Staff 4 The WEB by Joe Stewart 5 Letters to the Lamp Post 6 Meherabad Celebrations by James Cox 7 Meher Baba's I02nd Birthday in Los Angeles by Linda Zavala 8 Adele Wolkin at Denver Sahavas by Judi Schoeck 10 AT THE BOOKSTORE 12 ON SUFFERING by Mani Irani 12 The One Real Thing You Can Do in this Life by Mehera J. Irani 13 Baba's Nazar by Eruch Jessawala 14 In Memoria by Dina Snow Franklin 15 CALENDER OF EVENTS 16 Children's Corner 17 CENTER REPORT Michael Ramsden 18-19 The Master's Prayer 20-21 Poetry 22 August 23, 1966 by Kitty Davy to Mani . 22 Borrowed Time by Andy Muir 23 Persian New Year. by R. Norrozy 24 Arts & Entertainment 25 NEWS FROM INDIA by James Cox 26 I Heard God Laughing 27 ANNOUNCEMENT SECTION 28 Letter from the Archives and Museum Committee of the Avatar Meher Baba Trust 30 Life Is A Pair 0' Ducks' 31 Review of Murshida, by Ralph Lewis in Meher Baba Association, England, Newsletter 31 Bless Us All by Adi K Irani 32 Prayer as Inner Approach Dictated by Avatar Meher Baba 33 The 101 Names of God

The Love Street Lamp Post publishes information on the activites of the Avartar Meher Baba Center of Southern California and the life and works of Meher Baba.• The Love Street Lamp Post is given free of charge in the spirit of spreading Avatar Meher Baba's Message of Love and Truth.• A publication of the Avatar Meher Baba Center of Southern California. 10808 Santa Monica Blvd. Los Angeles CA 90025' Published quarterly (January, April, July, October)' All contents © 1996 by the Avatar Meher Baba Center of Southern California, except where noted. Call (310) 474-9454 for further information on programs and services offered by the Center.


Letters to the Lamp Post Dear Lamp Post: To the Love Street Lamp Post: I have just read the April issue of the Love Street LampPost, and I can't tell you how much I enjoyed it! It was so wonderful to hear about what is going on allover the Baba world. You in Los Angeles are so lucky to have a Center. For those of us who are the 'only Baba lover in town' your magazine is a wonderful thread to make us feel involved with the exciting happenings in the Baba World! I have included a $20 check, I hope that will be enough to cover a years worth of LampPosts. There was so much in the magazine I enjoyed, but being an avid movie goer, I particularly liked Richard Arthur's piece on Arts and Entertainment. However, I felt there was one movie he left out that I would have placed at the top of the list.. .....Dead Man Walking. Why such a gruesome theme, that of a man's execution, would be at the top of my list is as follows: To the casual observer the Sean Penn character was a total scumbag, a cold callous killer. But the nun played by Susan Sarandon, (who justifiably got the Oscar!) was able to see beyond the man & his actions & could give love to the soul within him. I mean Baba tells us He is in everything, the scorpion as well as the lamb, the evil person as well as the good. If we are to live as Baba tells us, we can not be selective in our loving. We can't love only the kind person, one who loves us, one who is handsome, one who deserves our love. Yes, Babe was about kindness, tolerance etc etc, & was very cute, but I thought more than any other film Dead Man Walking gave us a prime example of a person following Baba's teaching to the letter: "Start by loving those you cannot love, then you will be loving God". Thanks again for a great magazine! Keep up the good work. Jai Baba. --- Dorothy Bishop

It was one of those lazy Saturday mornings. I

woke up early and just stayed in bed. 1 had a stack of things to read. There's a pile in my room (computer magazines, educational bulletins, textbook samples, and "The Love Street Lamp Post.") Was there an editor change lately? I studied the masthead for awhile for the answer. This current edition seems to be sweeter than some of the latest publications. There didn't seem to be a "hidden agenda" in this issue. The agenda was Meher Baba and only Meher Baba. 1 know the Divine One appreciates that very much. I don't know what changes have taken place, but I like them! ---- Larry Pesta

Dear LampPost, We just received the April-June issue and as always, it is great to hear of happenings in the wider Baba Community. I thought I'd send some of the efforts that our youngest children, Abraham (11 ) and Manija (7) produced after we returned to New Zealand from a wonderful three weeks in India this January. I hope your readers get the opportunity to enjoy them as much as we have. In His love, Brad Kunin and family.

See children's page

I just want to say how much my family appreciates the Lamp Post. The best compliment I could give it, is that somtimes you think you're reading a Glow! Jai Baba Flayton family


Letters to the Lamp Post Dear Lamp Post: To the Love Street Lamp Post: I have just read the April issue of the Love Street LampPost, and I can't tell you how much I enjoyed it! It was so wonderful to hear about what is going on all over the Baba world. You in Los Angeles are so lucky to have a Center. For those of us who are the 'only Baba lover in town' your magazine is a wonderful thread to make us feel involved with the exciting happenings in the Baba World! I have included a $20 check, I hope that will be enough to cover a years worth of LampPosts. There was so much in the magazine I enjoyed, but being an avid movie goer, I particularly liked Richard Arthur's piece on Arts and Entertainment. However, I felt there was one movie he left out that I would have placed at the top of the list... ... .Dead Man Walking. Why such a gruesome theme, that of a man's execution, would be at the top of my list is as follows: To the casual observer the Sean Penn character was a total scumbag, a cold callous killer. But the nun played by Susan Sarandon, (who justifiably got the Oscar!) was able to see beyond the man & his actions & could give love to the soul within him. I mean Baba tells us He is in everything, the scorpion as well as the lamb, the evil person as well as the good. If we are to live as Baba tells us, we can not be selective in our loving. We can't love only the kind person, one who loves us, one who is handsome, one who deserves our love. Yes, Babe was about kindness, tolerance etc etc, & was very cute, but I thought more than any other film Dead Man Walking gave us a prime example of a person following Baba's teaching to the letter: "Start by loving those you cannot love, then you will be loving God". Thanks again for a great magazine! Keep up the good work. Jai Baba. --- Dorothy Bishop

It was one of those lazy Saturday mornings. I

woke up early and just stayed in bed. I had a stack of things to read. There's a pile in my room (computer magazines, educational bulletins, textbook samples, and "The Love Street Lamp Post.") Was there an editor change lately? I studied the masthead for awhile for the answer. This current edition seems to be sweeter than some of the latest publications. There didn't seem to be a "hidden agenda" in this issue. The agenda was Meher Baba and only Meher Baba. I know the Divine One appreciates that very much. I don't know what changes have taken place, but I like them! ---- Larry Pesta

Dear LampPost, We just received the April-June issue and as always, it is great to hear of happenings in the wider Baba Community. I thought I'd send some of the efforts that our youngest children, Abraham (11) and Manija (7) produced after we returned to New Zealand from a wonderful three weeks in India this January. I hope your readers get the opportunity to enjoy them as much as we have. In His love, Brad Kunin and family.

See children's page

I just want to say how much my family appreciates the Lamp Post. The best compliment I could give it, is that somtimes you think you're reading a Glow! Jai Baba Hayton family


102 YEARS WITH AVATAR MEHER BABA! 011 Februarv 25. 1996 Baba lovers aroulld the world came together to celebrate Meher Baba's I02nd Birthday. These are reports jim-II Baba Centers in India. US: Los Angeles. Myrtle Beach. Chapel Hill. Atlallta, Washington D. C, Denver. Australia. and Norway.

Meherabad Celebrations by James Cox At about II am, the women mandali, along with Eruch and Aloba, came to the Samadhi for arti. Mani, having recently returned from Pune, stayed back at Meherazad to recuperate. After a relatively quick arti, all headed down the hill for the play at Hostel A, which is now called the Arts and Entertainment Center, or something like that. But it's the same building, and wet gunny bags had been placed on the roof to keep the place cool, if possible. As the play started, the exhaust fans were shut off, to enable people to hear, and it became a contest of whether the play could generate enough interest to distract your mind from the ever increasing heat. This year, the play won hands down. No heat strokes. The play was called, "This Man David," and it was based on a screenplay that Baba had encouraged to be written in the 30s. Baba provided personal guidance for the project in the original version, but it was never produced as a motion picture. Thi was the first time that any of the screenplays that Baba had instructed people to write was ever produced as a play in Meherabad, and the process was different from the beginning. The script wa adapted for the theater by Heather Nadel and Alan Wagner, but this year there was an unusual amount of personal differences, and various people had predicted the failure of the play, but on the contrary, I think it turned out to be hands down the best play ever produced in Meherabad. It sort of miraculously came together at the last moment, and you could even say that this performance was inspired. There was hardly a dry eye in the theater. The storyline opens in a small town called Middlesville that is very set in its ways, and that detests any kind of change. Into this village one day comes David Lord, someone that is taken as a school teacher, and who assumes the role, bringing a fresh air of love and kindness into this stale community. Of cour e there are people of power who are not pleased by this change, and they create opposition for David, but he persists with his insightful and helpful acts of kindness. There is a pregnant girl whose lover runs away, leaving her without support, and there is a ridiculed

town fool who has never had a friend. David helps these two, and is then set up by one of the townsfolk as an arsonist, and in a moment of mob frenzy, is lynched. On the tree where he is hung, later appears an image of his face, and that tree becomes a focus of pilgrimage. This preceeds Baba's face appearing on the Umbar tree outside Mehera's window by nearly 50 years. Superficially, this seems like a very stereotypical play with the same old universal themes, which I suppose it is, but the magic comes in how it all fits together, and that is almost impossible to capture in a brief revue. The music, written by Ward Parks in about a week, was nothing short of sublime, and Ted Judson's portrayal of David Lord, a potentially campy and very ri ky role, was so inspired that when I congratulated him 15

Avatar Meher Baba 1925

minutes after the end of the play, you could still feel the charge. I found myself wishing that everyone I had ever loved could have been there to witness this performance. Alan Wagner, as usual, directed the play with help from Nancy Wall and Mary Sutton, and incredible performances were also given by Rickii Sheu, Jeff Coleman, Mary Sutton and Minoo Hamilton (who did his whole part in one week.) Bravos also go out to all of the supporting cast, stage crew, and marvelous sets designed by Carmen Diaz and Katherine Cox. ~


Meher Baba's l02nd Birthday in Los Angeles by Linda Zavala A two day celebration for Beloved Baba's birthday was offered this year the remembrance of which began heartily with 7 "Avatar Meher Baba ki jai"s at exactly 3:30pm on Saturday. Dr. Allan Cohen joined us this year. He had not visited the LA. Group since '77'78 so it was really a delight to be with him again. He recounted how he came to Baba in the late '60s and how almost before he knew he was a Baba "lover" Baba decided to use this shy university student for His work and told him to go out and talk about Baba. He reminded us of how Baba as the Divine Trickster can use illusion for His Universal Work and "turn the key" which He did in the'60s bringing many new lovers to Himself. Sunday, the 25th we moved on to Occidental College in nearby Eagle Rock in Lower Herrick Hall to continue offerings to the Beloved. Baba's baraka'was palpably felt. There was a very intimate family feeling this year enhanced by the children making their offerings to Baba 0 naturally and easily. Janani Lee played the flute, Mia

Janami and Josh Lee, Danny Maguire and Mia Campagna perform a medley

D/: Allen Cohen guest speaker at LA birthday celebrations.

Mehernoush Lorkalantari dances a traditional Persian dance

Campagna sang a lovely song "If God Were One Of Us" and was accompanied by Rob Thornburn and her father Michael Campagna on guitar. Danny Maguire, Josh and Janani Lee and Mia ang the Baba alphabet song starting with "A is for Avatar" etc. Steve Sadono played Bach's "Prelude in Fugue" very deftly on piano. Mehernoush's Persian dance was so graceful in yet another gorgeous costume in hot pink. Mahmoud Ajang sang the Persian arti very soulfully. It was very heattwarming to see George Gerdes on stage, looking healthy, after undergoing heart surgery several months ago. He sang three or four folk songs on guitar. Billy Goodrum, Richard Stermer, Harry Thomas, Debra Ashe, Michael Campagna, Rob Thornburn, Scott and Prem Makeig, and Fayre Davis, offered heartfelt and uplifting song. Michael Matthias of New Jersey, as always, had some surprises for us with his cosmic poetry readings. Fred Stankus, aka Ed McMaya, waged war against the mind with his perennial favorite "Manonash Calypso". Jeff Maguire did a stand up ad lib pointing out the pitfalls of living a spiritual life in the fast lane with The One! Lastly we saw the Beloved's face and form divine at the birthday party filmed in Nasik. The celebration came to a close with Steve Shev's intimate rendition of "Beguine the Beguine" on the mandolin. Billy Goodrum and Linda Zavala, coorMarguerite Poley reads poem to dinators wish to express Baba. Linda Zavala assists. a special thanks to Tim Thelan, sound engineer, Mario Zavala, lighting engineer, Rob and Wendy Ward, Mary Kay and Leila Hage, Rose Choi, Vanessa Stout, flower arranging, David Overton, the birthday cake and others for making it such a beautiful event. .

~


Adele Wolkin at Denver Sahavas by Judi Schoeck Love, God is Love! Meher Baba, Meher Baba, Avatar, Two lodge buildings, side by side up a snowy hill Avatar! in the Rocky Mountain out ide Denver, were transformed Saturday night, Adele told us of her Sahavas with into Lower and Upper Meherabad during the third annual Meher Baba. She first saw Meher Baba Rocky Mtn. Sahavas for Meher Baba's Bilthday. This year, about 38 people from in April 1952, very early in the morning at New York's Penn Station. Baba had near and far attended the two-day gathersaid 'no interview', a he and the 6 ing and Adele Wolkin was our special guest. women and 6 men companions were on The idea for a regional gathering their way to the Meher Center, so Adele and Filis waited on an upstairs balcony was put into place for the centenary celebration of the Ancient One's Advent and, just to glimpse the Master. Adele said The as other Sahavas attendees know, it's a Abodefor One and All is the name Meher Baba gave to the Myrtle Beach Center. great way to be together and focused, away from the pull of our daily lives. When Adele first met Meher Baba (at 9:30 am on May 10, 1952), she realSaturday morning Adele spoke of learning of Meher Baba through Fili ized that He wa her mother and father, Frederick and Meher Baba s Western someone who makes you feel loved and women disciples. After Filis heard a talk protected and not self-conscious. Adele by Norina Matchabelli, Adele met Elizatold u he didn't look too deeply into beth Patterson and adine Tolstoy at Baba's eyes on her first meeting. Standing next to Baba was like standing next Elizabeth's home. orina was seated to to a tall person knowing you're shortreveal a spiritual thought transmission from Judi Schoeck. Adele Wolkin, Dixon Staples at Denver Meher Baba. He had said Norina was the you knew where you were at, as a human 23-25, 1996 Sahavas, Feb being. Adele said the contagion ofBaba' only one in the West who had spiritual thought transmis ion. During these talks, purity was such, that touching Him was not like another type of human being. Adele said, Norina's voice and appearance changed. Once Adele had met Baba, she realized Norina did take on asAdele gave of herself unstintingly during her time with us. We left our mountain retreat mid-day and our celpects of Baba during these sessions. Adele said she felt so ebration for Baba's birthday ended that evening with a party much balm and sweetness as Norina spoke, there was no held in Denver. At our regular weekly Baba meeting the way to respond negatively because the authenticity of love showed through. following Sunday night, more than one of us mentioned how the fragrance of our Sahavas stayed with us aJl week. In 1944, Adele and Filis were asked by the three if And may it ever be so! that we continue to grow in keepthey would like to help prepare for Meher Baba' coming ing company with Beloved Baba every day of our lives. to the States. After Adele and Filis spent months acting as usher during public talks, helping with elaborate teas the Meher Spiritual Center in South Carolina, adine became ill with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Baba said He wanted someone who loved her to care for her. Norina intuited that Adele would be the right per on for this and Adele took charge of nursing Nadine. Adele shared with us that Norina wa the only one Elizabeth ordinarily went along with, and that Baba had told Nadine that he would achieve what Leo Tolstoy longed for. Late Saturday afternoon, a dhuni fire was lit in the Upper Meherabad fireplace and each of us threw our intentions in Meher Baba's consuming fire of love. Sharing Meher Baba of songs and stories ended with an energy-filled circle dance 1936 as we sang the round: Meher Baba, Meher Baba, God is


Washington D.C.

ATLANTA

More than 60 people in the Meher Baba Washington (DC) Gathering celebrated Baba's I 02nd birthday with a music program at the Synergy Dance and Healing Arts Center on February 24. And on the 25th, there was a potluck brunch at Jeff and Geri Craddock's home.

About two dozen from the Atlanta environs grouped together to celebrate Meher Baba's birthday. Jeff Wolverton from Myrtle Beach was invited as guest speaker and musician. Trudy Gardiner of Athens, GA was also a featured vocalist. The gatherings were at Naozer and Kathy Dadachanji's and began with arti at 8:30 pm on Saturday, February 24 (which was 7 a.m. in India, February 25). Then there was music and Jeff's message about harmony.

The musicians invited were Raphael Rudd of New Jersey, pianist, and Jane Brown of Myrtle Beach, vocalist; with the D.C. group's own Dan Stone accompanying on guitar. The performance was a perfect example of 'the show must go on,' as Jane and Dan were fighting laryngitis and Raphael almost had to cancel as he was suffering from a broken cheekbone incurred when he slipped on the ice in New York. Despite being in considerable pain, at the last minute he decided to perform, considering several options to conceal his extensive bruising including performing as 'The Phantom of the Opera' with full mask. But he finally decided on make-up and turned his best side to the audience. He did wear his black velvet cape. Fortunately, Dan's guitar didn't need his husky voice, Jane came through, entertaining the large group using a Janis Joplin techique: sipping herbal cough medicine throughout the performance. Despite their disabilities, each performed beautifully. Troupers!

Chapel Hill NC About 50 attended when Tom Riley gave a talk in Chapel Hill on February 25 for Baba's birthday celebration. He told about his second meeting with Baba in 1962 and about his link, Vidas, a French-Hungarian composer who met Baba in Hollywood in 1932. Cathy Riley was the guest musician, performing with a number of the Baba children, plus Jerry Llewellyn and Darryl Smith.

Myrtle Beach The name is apt. "Charmian," she said, "means a bit of joy". And joy it was that she brought to Meher Center on Meher Baba's birthday week-end February 24th and 25th. It was like a radiance in her very being that spilled out in delighted laughs and smiles and chuckles as a final response to nearly every situation or subject, no matter how painful or humiliating or disastrous. This is her wisdom: "It's a good way to bum sanskaras: illness and suffering. And Baba did say to be cheerful, you know.!" Charmian Duce Knowles journeyed from the Sufism Reoriented Center in Walnut Creek, California to share her memories of Meher Baba and lessons she has learned. The Meeting Place was packed on Saturday night, and on Sunday at Dilruba House, people were squeezed into every inch of space in two rooms, overflowing into the hallway and kitchen. "Spiritual advancement comes from being in the world", she concluded. "We have retreat centers just as places to rest for a while, not stay in. We need to go back into the world and serve humanity. That's how we can serve God".

Reproducedfrom "The White Horse Journal" by permission, Vicki Warner

"It is said that the sou] has to pass through eight million, four hundred thousand (84 Lakhs) human forms after it has once commenced to reincarnate in the human form. The prehuman forms through which it has to pass before it can incarnate in the human form are innumberable. from "God speaks" by Meher Baba, page 163


AT THE BOOKSTORE Jai Baba and welcome to the Bookstore! As usual we have more new and exciting things to tell you about. But I hesitate I have been caught out before, by telling you about a new item on the producer's promise that by press time we would have it in stock. Only to find production delays have occurred, and I am faced with orders but no product! Baba seems to have tested Elaine Cox's patience & perseverance with the second volume of the wonderful Song of Huma tape. She had thought it would be ready long ere this, but is now promising to have it to us in time for the July Sahavas. So those of you who can make the trip to California to share in His Sahavas will be able to buy it in the Bookstore, anyone else can order it, and I'll be happy to ship it out to you. For those who are unfamiliar with this tape, a little explanation: Huma was the pen name Baba used when writing His ghazals and other poems in the 1920's. Here they are sung by Rhoda Mistry, Meher Baba 1931 Mani Irani, and Katie Irani. They were sung acapella & recorded in India, & then set to music in the States. Stop press, more problems, not available for another few months. Another hot item many of you have been waiting for, 10, these many years! Life is a Pair '0 Ducks . ...... the delightful video from the artistry ofWodin. See the review by Vicki Warner on page II There are two volumes at $29.95 each, available now. While on videos, the Sufis have released a tape on the life of Murshida Ivy O. Ouce, titled simply: Murshida. Actually its been available in England for some time, but is only recently released here. With a 48 minute run time, its a very reasonably priced $26. See the review on page 27 Talking of Murshida.... if you haven't read How A Master Works it is a book definitely worth having in your library. Written in 1975 by Ivy Ouce it answers questions such as "Who am I? What am I doing here? How

do I grow spiritually?". She also gives the answers to "What is authentic spiritual practice? How do I integrate the mystical with the practical? What is real discipleship all about?" In an autobiographical text, she tells of her life with Meher Baba and examines the working methods used by Baba to perfect His disciples, both in India and the Western world. Mrs. Ouce writes disarmingly and simply, but tells the story on many different levels. In firsthand detail, she subtly reveals "secrets" of spiritual development. Its a 768 page hard bound book, exceptionally inexpensive at $17.95. 'Our Lady of the Roses', Carolyn Parker, has designed us 3 new cards, one, an exquisite photo of Mehera, and 2 new ones ofBaba. Photos of these beautiful cards are scattered throughout the magazine. If you are not familiar with Carolyn's work: she grows, cuts, and arranges fresh roses on photos of Baba and Mehera. These highly colourful roses contrast wonderfully with the black and white photograph, but they are arranged so skillfully, it seems almost as tho' they are, in reality, being worn. Carolyn then photographs the assembled photos and roses, so we have a combination of colour and black and white. These photos are then adhered to high quality white stock as fold over cards with matching envelopes. They are $3 each. Another item that has caused great excitement on the Internet is the new album by Raphael Rudd. I have mentioned it in the last two issues, and many of you sent in your orders already. But mid-production there was a change of plans: instead of a tape & a CO of The Awakener, we are now being offered something much better! Remember Raphael's tape & CD called Skydancer ? Well if you wanted the CD you had to pay $21, that was the cost to Raphael, & he passed it on to me, & the Bookstore to you, at the same price. Reason for its high price was the CD had only been commercially released in Japan, and we were selling you copies with Japanese printing all over them. But the production company has just come up with a great idea!: We now have for you a double CD, Skydancer and The


Awakening at the great low price of $19.95. To refresh your memory about The Awakener tape, check your last LampPost, but if you've just come aboard as a new subscriber, here briefly, are the details: The Awakener was recorded at Eel Pie Studios in London from October 1978 through May 1980 with Pete Townshend, Phil Collins and Annie Haslam. Never before released, it showcases Raphael's full and textural sound in an orchestral rock oriented style he was experimenting with at the time. Call me for more details or to place your order. The double CD for $19.95!! To answer your question, no there will be no tapes released at this time, perhaps down the road aways ...

inside....what a treat is in store for you. Not having the time to even peak inside I sent it off to John Page, who wrote the review on page 26 Then when he e mailed it back to me with selections, ] nearly fell off my chair laughing!] know God was laughing! Its the kind of thing where you read one & then rush to the phone to call a dear one and say "you've just got to listen to this!" Paperback, 161 pages, $14.

] had always tried to get your orders out within a few days, but now that the Bookstore is also on the Internet & Baba List serv, that takes up another hour or two a night, so often the orders can not be packed, written up & sent for a week or more. Particularly just after a . LampPost comes out & you all rush An absolutely delightful to buy the things] have been telling book that just came to us is f Thought you about! J love it, but it really conf Heard God Laughing renderings of cerns me when you can't get that Hafiz by Daniel Ladinsky. Yes 1 know which you want within a few days. So Hafiz was Baba's favourite poet, but please bear with me and allow 2-3 with the limited time J have available, weeks for receipt of order. However Hafiz was not one of the books] was if you need it for a birthday present or likely to pick up for a quick read. Not a special meeting, please be sure to until now that is! When Searchlight The newly released double CD featuring "Skydamer" and the Awakening. $19:95 let me know the date you have to have Publications sent me the copy for reit by, &] will get it to you on time. view] was immediately captivated by Thats all for this issue...hope to see a lot of you at the whimsical drawing of this kindly old gentleman with a the Sahavas.....otherwise.... twinkle in his eye, that makes the lovely cover of the book, drawn by Diane Cobb. But just wait till you see See you, at the Bookstore! '.

,路~~b.J.tA (}-..-

. f

The Subject Toni2ht is Love Because this issue is so late, we have a chance to mention the second book by Daniel Ladinsky, which followed not a month after the first. As one is to humor, this is to love. It is so heartwarming, not to mention delightfull, and another one you simply have to share with a loved one. The prescription for the absolutely ideal setting to read The Subject tonight is Love is as follows: Whether your Significant Other is Meher Baba or a more corporeal personage, be alone with them. Light the candles, put a Simon Reece tape on, and then read aloud. The atmosphere will become infused with the magic, the love, the joy of life and

of knowing we live with the knowledge that the Christ was here on earth in our time, walked among us, and embraced many of us. This knowledge alone gives you a glow warm enough to light a full city block! This second book of Daniel's is published by Pumpkin House Press. 67 pages and is only $10


ON SUFFERING

The One Real Thing You Can Do in this Life

by Mani Irani

by Mehera J. lrani, from the book "Mehera"

Mani sent the following to Jane Haynes with the request that it be read aloud at the Meher Spiritual Center and then published in the Love Street Lamp Post. From the time I wa little I knew that suffering, like everything else in creation, comes from God. I noticed how much suffering my loved ones had to go through in one way or another, especially my close family. Later I would wonder why the good people I knew received more suffering while the not-good people I knew got away with whatever they did. The answer came from within me that uffering must surely be a very good thing, such a good thing that God would want to share it with His special ones. I asked Father about it, and he said, "Never question God's Love and Wisdom my child, suffering is a pas ing thing given to you for your lasting benefit." When you belong to the Lord, He takes over all that is yours - your failure, your victories, your joy and your sorrow , to work with as He wishes. With all the Baba lovers that we know of going through all the suffering that we hear of, it is not easy to see all the compassion that we are assured of. His unseen compassion is spoken of by His great lovers in the past, and illustrated by a Perfect Master in a simple analogy of a village potter.

You may have been among one of the groups accompanying Eruch on a tour of Pimpalgaon Village in the old days when he took Baba-Iovers around at village. One of the favourite ight was the village potter at work making a pot on a primitive wheel turned by hand. While the clay is whirling around on the wheel, the potter i haping the pot by whacking it with a wooden mallet. As hi right hand is visibly raining these blows on the outside of the pot, his left hand is inside the pot, unseen, silently supporting and upholding it so that it does not break. Thus a Perfect Master illustrates God's unseen compassion. Avatar Meher Baba Ki Jai!!!

~

As I have said, Baba suffered for each one of us, for His Love for each one of us. In many, many ways Baba suffered. Baba had so much work and put so much stress and strain on His body with His fasts; with His seclusions; with His mast work when He walked for miles and miles in the hot sun and travelled in third-class trains for days without rest; with His contacting the lepers; with His bowing down to the thousands of sadhus and poor people; and with His two accidents. And Baba had to constantly put up with the natures of those around Him, and with many other things. So much He has gone through. I cannot tell you of all the suffering that He took upon Himself. And He used to just keep quiet and not say a word. Baba had to swallow all the suffering and all the difficulties He had to go through. Such a strain it was, never to be able to speak out. We cannot know now great that suffering was for Baba. Keeping silence all those years wa most difficult for Baba. Baba's nature was happy and cheerful. He loved to talk and to laugh and to sing, but after silence Baba could not say anything. He had to spell everything out on the alphabet board. Baba had a very fine en e of humour, but if He wanted to be funny or to tea e someone He would have to point to the letters on the board. And by the time He had finished saying it, half the fun was lost. Then Baba gave up even the alphabet board, and with great patience He would have to repeat again and again, through gestures, what He wanted to convey. And Baba's nature was to do everything quickly. Baba loved to laugh, but even that sound He denied Himself and held back. All those years Baba had to hold back and not say what He wanted to say. Every second of the day, every minute, every day, every month, every year for forty-four years Baba could not say what He wanted to say. In 194\ Upasni Maharaj knew that He was oon going to give up His body, and He wanted to see Baba one more time. Baba agreed to meet Him alone, but not in Sakori. So it was arranged that they meet outside Sakori. They met, and with tears in His eye Maharaj told Baba, "Give up Your silence. Now it is bringing too much suffering." And Baba replied, "No, I have come to suffer, and My work is most important. J must finish My work." And how much Baba suffered as time passed. He never told us He was suffering, but He was. And for those last twelve years Baba could not even


walk. Baba lived those twelve years with great difficulty, yet not the sound of a groan or a moan did He make. Hi health was such that He must have wanted to, but He did not complain. Baba quietly suffered to the very end. Baba suffered for our sake, for each one, and for all humanity, and for all creation. Baba has given a great push to every soul in creation. He is the Creator, and it all belongs to Him. And Baba is all-forgiving, and very, very loving. Sometimes we made mistakes, because it was not easy to live with the Avatar. He always tested one. And when that time came, we did ometimes forget and make mistake . But Baba would at once forgive us and say, "Don't worry. Take it out of your head, forget it." An we did our best to erve Him and love Him to the be t of our ability. So Baba has suffered for each one of us, and now we should love Him becau e He loves us and went through all thi suffering for each of us. Always hold on to Baba's daaman and love Him, that is the one real thing you can do in this life. Baba may seem to try to snatch His daaman from your hands, but be sure not to let go, be sure to hold on tightly. Be true to His love for you.

1-:

Babals Nazar by Eruch Jessawala

Meher Baba often told us that suffering brought the individual closer to Him. One day we were all itting in the Mandali Hall enjoying a music programme in progre s with a large number of people in attendance and in the gathering wa a woman holding a smaJl baby in her arm . Suddenly at one point the baby started to cry, tugging at the mother in its efforts to be free. This greatly embarrassed the mother who kept her hold, but the more she tried to restrain and silence the child, the louder it cries became. Baba of course noticed the mother' discomfiture and asked that the baby be allowed to crawl on the floor and as soon as this was done the crie were silenced and the baby gurgled happily in it new found freedom. After the music stopped, Baba began to give a discourse and everyone's attention was focussed on what He wa saying. Halfway through the discourse, Baba stopped

and pointing to the baby who was close to falling over the threshold of the door, signalled that the mother should retrieve it and let it crawl near her. Baba then interrupted His di course to explain the following in the e word: "When I say My nazar (grace) i on you, it means I allow you to play with your own little games just as you saw this baby do, and when you are about to fall and hurt your elf, I pick you up and put you in a afe place and let you continue with your game. However, when I pick you up, like the baby you throw a tantrum, for My act of picking you up appear in a form of suffering for you, but I know what i good for you. It is only your suffering that will bring you close to Me and when you suffer, know that My nazar is on you." From THE ANCIENT ONE, p. /36 Copyright /985 Naosherwan An::.ar


IN MEMORIAM by Dina Snow Franklin Andy Muir passed on to His Beloved at 7.15 am Sunday May 19th, just 8 days after his 82nd birthday. It was a blessed release for him as he had been in fragile health for the past few years. Andy has touched a great many lives, and I don't think there is a person who could not feel that their lives were enhanced by that contact. I was one of the lucky ones who knew him as PegAndy. Baba called them this when he and his wonderful (overused word, great understatement!) wife, Peggy were the leaders of the Baba group in Washington D.C. back in the 60s. We immediately hit it off with them & formed an intimate family friendship. They both said they felt there were strong karmic ties to our children. When I invited Andy to my daughter's wedding in '94 he said "I've got to be there! The little stinker peed on my lap the first time I met her!" Unfortunately health problems prevented him from attending, and we missed him badly. Before his body started failing him, he was an indefatigable worker. In his late 70s he would stay with me each Sahavas & pack up and carry heavy boxes for me. Always the consumate gentleman, he refused to let me lift a thing. At the Sahavas he would sit to have a quiet chat with someone and after 15 minutes or so, there would be a crowd of 30 or more around him. He had so many wonderful stories to tell, thank goodnes he got a lot of it on audio and video tapes in a interview form. It would be good to get those tapes in our lending library, so those of us who know and love him can listen to him again, and those who have never heard him, can learn from his wisdom. When his beloved Peggy succumbed to Alzheimer's, Andy took on the full nur ing chores for four long heartbreaking years. From this experience he says he learned what it is to be a Mother. He would talk to any man he could get to listen about how wonderful the mothering instict was, and what amazing creatures we women were. Of course, we didn't mind hearing that! Here was a man who had truly integrated his masculine and feminine side. It made him a marvellous companion for both men and women. His love for God and devotion to the Avatar as Meher Baba was as full and as strong as I have seen in anyone shOlt of the Mandali! But Andy also had an ascerbic side, that totally delighted a lot of us. No mush ball was he! He could shoot fire and brimstone at times! We shared the same birthday, so when he was still

living in that fabulous apartment in D.C. I used to fly out for the weekend and we'd party the time away. He moved a few years ago to the wonderful little cottage in the woods which he promptly named "Muir Woods". He asked me to help him unpack the accumulation of30 plus years ofBaba treasures, and all the beautiful things he and Peggy had collected in the Orient. What a wonderful experience that was! So much beautiful 'Meherabilia', it took days longer than the job would normally call for. Andy had been in hospital for a few days after a fall that broke his hip, then lapsed into a coma, and passed on without regaining consciousness. He had his very loving Baba friends around him all the time and had a peacefull passage to the Prayers and Avatar Meher Baba Ki Jai! It was a happy time for us all, knowing how his body had been failing him, and knowing that he was now reunited with his beloved Meher Baba and his dearest Peggy. Jai Baba Andy, I will really miss you! I'm sure many of you have some wonderful' Andy stories'. If you would like to send them to us, we would be happy to share them in these pages.

t:-

Upon learning ofAndy's passage, we received the following telegram from the Mandali:

"Dear Andy, ancient lover of the Ancient One, is enjoying unbounded freedom in Beloved Avatar Meher Baba's presence. We salute his love for his Beloved Master, Avatar Meher Baba." Signed, Your Meherazad Family


CALENDER OF EVENTS July 3. Wednesday 7:30pm Lord Meher by Bhau Kalchuri

Reading and discussion

July 27. Saturday 8pm Arti An evening of prayers, song, poetry, and other expressions of devotion for Meher Baba.

July 6. Saturday 8pm Film Night

Avatar Meher Baba as recorded on film.

July 31. Wednesday 7:30pm Lord Meher by Bhau Kalchuri

Reading and discussion

July10. Wednesday 7:30pm Lord Meher by Bhau Kalchuri

Reading and discussion

July10. Wednesday 9pm The Call (Century Cable SM)

TIme in for this public access broadcast of this film on Meher Baba. Tell a friend. Much thanks to producer Fred Stankus.

July13. Saturday 6pm Farsi Language Meeting

Devoted to the discussion of Meher Baba in The Farsi language. Coordinated by Dr. Mahmoud Ajang.

July13. Saturday 8 pm Silence Day (history and sharing).

Come tell your favorite silence day stories and experiences.

August 3. Saturday 9:30am路 4:30pm Mehermount's 40th Anniversary celebration of Meher Baba's visit Special guests Billie Eaton, Tex Hightower, Marguerite Poley and Adele Wolkin.

Lord Meher by Bhau Kalchuri

Lord Meher by Bhau Kalchuri

Reading and discussion

August 31. Saturday 8pm Baba World News (BWN) News, information and art from around the Baba world. September 4. Wednesday 7:30pm Lord Meher by Bhau Kalchuri

Reading and discussion

September 7. Saturday 6pm Farsi Language Meeting

Avatar Meher Baba as recorded on film.

Devoted to the discussion of Meher Baba in The Farsi language. Coordinated by Dr. Mahmoud Ajang.

August 7. Wednesday 7:30pm

September 7. Saturday 8pm

Lord Meher by Bhau Kalchuri

Film Night

August 3. Saturday 8pm Film Night

Reading and discussion

August 10. Saturday 6pm Farsi Language Meeting

Devoted to the discussion of Meher Baba in The Farsi language. Coordinated by Dr. Mahmoud Ajang.

August 10. Saturday 8pm Orientation (Meher Baba 101)

July17. Wednesday 7:30pm

August 28. Wednesday 7:30pm

An introduction to Avatar Meher Baba his life and works.

Reading and discussion

August 14. Wednesday 7:30pm

Avatar Meher Baba as recorded on film.

September 11. Wednesday 7:30pm Lord Meher by Bhau Kalchuri

Reading and discussion

September 14. Saturday 8pm Gutta Night

Come drink in the wine of Baba's love in a feast of sharing, hosted by our own Fred and G'

September 18. Wednesday 7:30pm Lord Meher by Bhau Kalchuri

Reading and discussion

July 20. Saturday

Lord Meher by Bhau Kalchuri

Mehermount work party. Please call caretaker Michelle @ (805) 640-0000 if interested.

Reading and discussion

September 21. Saturday 6pm Devoted to the discussion of Meher Baba in The Farsi language. Coordinated by Dr. Mahmoud Aj

Reading and discussion

August 17. Saturday 8pm Baba's sister Mani Come share with Adele Wolkin and Lynn Maguire in stories & music of beloved Baba's sister Mani & her family letters.

July 24. Wednesday 7:30pm

August 21. Wednesday 7:30pm

Lord Meher by Bhau Kalchuri

Lord Meher by Bhau Kalchuri

Reading and discussion.

Reading and discussion

July 20. Saturday 8pm God Speaks

July 27. Saturday

August 24. Saturday 6pm

Mehermount work party. Please call caretakerMichelle @ (805) 640-0000 if interested.

Farsi Language Meeting

July 27. Saturday 6pm Farsi Language Meeting

Devoted to the discussion of Meher Baba in The Farsi language. Coordinated by Dr. Mahmoud Ajang.

Devoted to the discussion of Meher Baba in The Farsi language. Coordinated by Dr. Mahmoud Ajang.

August 24. Saturday 8pm . Baba in Hollywood

Details and information on Meher Baba's visits to the fabled city of celluloid.

Farsi Language Meeting

September 21. Saturday 8pm Very Special Guest: Roshan Kerawalla. She will be with us for the preceeding 4days. Tea times to be announced. * September 25. Wednesday 7:30pm Lord Meher by Bhau Kalchuri

Reading and discussion

September 28. Saturday 8pm Dance

"I am happy even before Ihave reasonJ I am ful Light even before the sky can greet the sun or th moonJ Dear companions, we have been in love ~ God for so very, very 10ngJ What can Hafiz now but Forever Dance!" Hafiz Musicians interesled in performing please contact Richard @ (310) 208-4764.


Children's Corner

The swirl of color enclosing on one picture in my room, God's face, His glorious face, Meher Baba's face. Danny Maguire age 11

11111111.1. Beloued gods faithful seruants,more precious than all the riches the world would euer dare to acquire ,euer free from the clutches of greed and hatred,and understanding eternally and foreuer . memories shine on them like a sun that neuer sets and a moon that neuer grows dim. I long to stay with them till the end and listen to their enchanting tales of their life with the lord.

nbe.- \L. U\'{)\{\

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(II)

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7

1111'1 i11A11i1 The souls of many gather in a reunion of laue, coming to pay homage to the Oeloued, asking the almighty to sweep the floors of their hearts ,and polish the gates of their minds.

Abe. KiAY'l \ ~

(J 1)


CENTER REPORT Michael Ramsden Much has happened this last quarter. Board activity has been focused on several issues that have been in progress for some time. The first activity of note has been a follow-up on membership enrollment after the approval of the revised membership requirements, approved at the Annual General Meeting by the then current membership. This enrollment period for new and renewed voting members or associate members is still open. If you have not returned your membership status card, please do so A.S.A.P. This will make our membership and mailing lists fully updated. Thank you. The Second activity is related to a change in the way the physical building can be used. Unfortunately the Center does not meet the fire and building code requirements for having meetings upstairs with more than 9 people. Rocky Rodgers is redesigning storage and utilization of the downstairs room for meetings with up to 45 people. The Center has also purchased an outdoor pandal style tent for larger gatherings which can seat over 70 people. Combined meeting space with appropriate use of sound equipment is over 100 people - weather permitting - and in So. Cal. it usually does. The Third activity that has pre-occupied most of the memberships attention was related to the Capital Fundraising Campaign. In Southern California there have been many opinions shared amongst the members and non-members alike who utilize the Center and its facilities. Suffice to say that the effort did not come to its expected fruition at this time. It did bring into clearer focus the diversity of viewpoints present in the Southern California Meher Baba community about: * ownership versus rent/lease

*

Center Functions

*

Long Term Community Commitment to run and support a larger facility.

*

the difficulty of choosing an appropriate method for asking for donations.

We Keep Each Other Happy

*

The difficulties associated with ensuring that all the community are fully informed.

*

The difficulty getting all the community interested enough to become fully informed in appropriate tin to make an informed decision together.

*

The recent board re-organization itself.

It did become very apparent that there is solid cor munity support for moving the center to a larger building wi better facilities. In fact the membership already approved tl Board to make such a move at the A.G.M. in February, shou the Fundraising drive stop. There is however a movement process, to continue the Fundraising campaign. The Boa will review its progress at the next Board meeting at the el of June and make further decisions at that time. Last year the membership did approve a similar i terim move which did not take place because donations to tl Centers operating fund dwindled markedly, making such move impossible. Once again we are faced with the same pro lem. The community may have voted with their hearts b have to reach into their pocketbooks to make it happen. Many heartfelt thanks have been extended to all t: members of the Capital Fundraising and Long Range Pia ning committees from all members of our diverse comm nity. There have been many hurt feelings in this process whir have tried the patience, forebearance, forgiveness and se effacement of all on all sides of the issues. In all things A" tar Meher Baba has been present. The community is now looking forward to its co tinued activities at the Bookstore, with the Love Street Lan Post, at the regularly scheduled Center programs, the 19 r Sahavas and other special events and happenings scheduli throughout the year.

I Knew We Would Be Friends As soon as you opened your Like t\IVO lovers \lVho have become lost mouth In a \lVinter blizzard And I heard your soft And find a cozy empty hut Sounds, In the forest, I kne\IV \lVe \lVould be I no\IV huddle every\IVhere Friends. With the Friend. The first time, dear pilgrim, I God and I have built an immense fire heard Together. You laugh, We keep each other happy I kne\IV it \lVould not take me long And warm. ~--------'------~ To turn you back into From The Subject tonight is Love God.


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 al I 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.

The Masterls Prayer This prayer was dictated by Meher Saba during the twenty-one days of Saba S special work (from the /3th ofAugust to the 2nd of Septembe/; /953). /t was recited eve/~vday by one of the Mandali i/1 Saba s presence.

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 color, 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

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; Yazdan; Ahuramazda; God Almighty; and God the Beloved. You are named Ezad; the Only One worthy of worship.


Prayer to Mehera Prayer given by Mani.

Beloved Mehera, the purest of the pure, the one who loved Beloved Baba as He should be loved. Help us to love and serve Beloved Baba so that we may please Him as you have pleased Him.

Beloved Beautiful Baba by Mehera Over the highest mountain top From over the blue sea I will fly to you For I love you, I love you From over the hottest desert Over the deep valleys and lakes The den e forests and fields

I will fly to you For I love you, I love you And when I see you I'll run to you Into your lovely arms And hold you to me Hold you to my heart forever Beloved Beautiful Baba In your eyes I'll long to see your sweet love And you, You will see sweet love For you in me.


Poetry Learn From the Prophet An Alchemy Learn from the Prophet an alchemy: Whatever God gives you, be content. At the very moment you become content in affliction, the door of paradise will open. If the messenger of heartache comes to you, embrace him like a friend! A cruelty that comes from the Beloved bestow upon it a warm welcome! Then that heartache can throw off its veil, rain down sugar, and be gentle and heart - ravishing. Seize the edge of heartache's veil, for she is beautiful but deceptive. In this lane, I am the whoremonger, I have pulled off the veil from every beautiful face. They all put on ugly veils so that you will think they are dragons. But I am fed up with my spirit I worship dragons! If you are fed up with your spirit, then hear their calls of welcome! Heartache can never find me without laughter I call the pain the "cure." Nothing is more blessed than heartache, for its reward has no end. If you do not show your manliness, you will find nothing. I will be silent, lest a mistake jump from my mouth. Divan-i Shams-i Tabrizi, poem 2675, from W. C. Chittick, "The Sufi Path of Love: The Spiritual Teachings of Rumi," (State University of New York Press, 1983), pp.293-4.

Measure

I love you more than the morning sun, more than the stars at night more than the flowers that bloom in the shade and the moths that dance in the light

I love you more than the green, green grass and more than the great blue sky. The beauty I see when I look at you is so sweet that it makes me cry.

I love you more than a veil of lavender petals caressing a tree. More precious than gold is the sparkle of joy in your eyes when you look at me. I love you more than the smoothness of rest and more than the softness of peace. When everything wanes and contracts and recedes the expanse of my love will increase.

I love you more than a breath of air and the cool of a mountain stream, and compared to the bliss of loving you, life is an empty dream. Regina Fletcher Sedano

Emily Robertson The heart is a dove, winging away from the known, Below and above, Ocean. The heart is a dove, winging away Into infinity, pure and alone. Infinitely pure, it seemed, And so I let it go.

*Thank You Beloved Baba* Thank You Beloved Baba Your love has turned the key I was running away from me until You set me free I was unable to bow my head, You brought me to my knees You held my heart, You held my hand and gave me back to me Thank You Beloved Baba Your love has set me free


to be your slave, to be your son to be what I must be I was busy bein' someone else I didn't know what for You held my heart, You held my hand and opened that locked door. Thank You Beloved Baba You are my loving Lord Your compassion is boundless Your mercies are not stored You freely give me with both hands How could I ask for more? You gave my heart back to my soul and opened that locked door. Thank You Beloved Baba Your mercy is complete May I love and serve You forever with my life bowed at Your feet May I live only to please You and to earn Your smile of grace May I drown my sound in Your Silence and my eyes in Your lovely face.

Emily Robertson Thank You Beloved Baba You gave when I could not I looked at my beggarly hands and couldn't believe all I had got Now I only long to give You at least a little of what You gave me You gave my heart back to my soul Your love has set me free. Thank You Beloved Baba May I praise You without end You raised this stalk up from the ground and made this willow bend So these branches might tough your lotus feet my Beloved and my friend Thank You Beloved Baba May I thank you to the end

PEREGRINE The road of life returns, always, To a place of silence. Singing, speaking, we are always, Of that place. We are aware In our hearts of our desire To find out where it sta11s And to travel there. Closed Now (Inner Tears)

Thank You Beloved Baba May I thank you to the end.

From "Thank You Beloved Baba" (c) Tony Paterniti, 1994

Deep love, inner tears shared by two - You and I deep love, dear Beloved share with me your deep pain and the oneness it has created between us. Fred Schwager


"I say with my Divine Authority to each and all that whosoever takes my name at the time of breathing his last comes to me: So do not forget to remember Me in your last moments. Unless you start remembering me from now on, it will be difficult to remember me when your end approaches. You should start practicing from now on. Even if you take My name only once a day, you will not forget to remember Me in your dying moments."

... August 23, 1966 by Kitty Davy to Mani ... The following is an excerpt from a letter written August 23, 1966 by Kitty Davy to Mani, and followed by Mani:~ reply, that clar(fies the above statement by Baba:

Kitty writes: Allan Cohen asked me today to explain what Baba means when He so often says on hearing that so and so has passed on - "They have come to me." My answer was "It means different things to different ones".

from the round of births and deaths and experience eternal bliss. Only Baba's grace makes this possible. 2. Those who are close to Baba in their love for Him but drop their body without their last thoughts being of Baba, or without His name on their lips also come to Baba. When they reincarnate they are born in a very intimate Baba family. Such souls "come to Baba" in human form when Baba says they have "come to Me" . 3.Those who know of Baba and die without their last thoughts being of Baba and without His name on their lips, but die with thoughts of the spiritual path or thoughts of God also "come to Baba" when Baba specifically remarks they have "come to Me". Such souls reincarnate in their intense desire to lead a spiritual life and through their search for God they eventually "come to Baba" by contacting Him in His physical body. Thus when Baba says so and so has "Come to Me" it has different meanings for different ones.

Mani replies: Kitty's answer to Allan's question was correct. But a more detailed answer is given here of what Baba explained He means by they have "come to me."

4. As for the Mandali of Baba and the very intimate men and women disciples, their case is entirely different. Their very existence is because of the breath of Baba's Grace, and with or without their body, their existence is in Baba.

1. Those who remember Baba wholeheartedly or repeat His name while breathing their last, 'come to Baba" when they drop their body. They are liberated

Meherazad September 2nd 1966

i-:

Borrowed Time by Andy Muir May 8,1987 I wonder why He spared my life? When born I weighed not quite two pounds My twin brother came with me- but dead Now seventy-nine Still making the rounds. I wonder why he gave me a perfect wife? Or how he filled our many years with love and life? More than 13,000 days I wish it had been more But when two hearts beat as one Who thinks of keeping score By His grace-she brought me to His feet Gave me to Him for I was hers alone This was May 17, 1952 But Baba gave me back to her And saved my life once more

Saying, "Do it together!" Placed His hands upon our heads Linked our lives forever. This life of love I thought Would never end But He came to her My dearest Peggy then Ran away with my Best Friend Now I know my entire life And my years with a perfect wife Were borrowed from Baba Principal was His, interest mine Master's Card working fine I cannot pay the huge amount One day He will close my account. From "Meher Memuirs" , copyright1993, Andrew Muir


Persian New Year. by: R. Norrozy Since we have such a large Farsi community at our Saba Center here in Los Angeles. (more than any where else in the Country) we thought you may appreciate this vel)1 interesting explanation ofthe Persian New Year. /t will also answer all your questions as to just what all those things on the floor in front of Saba s Sadra actually Sland for.

Nowruz [pronounced NO-ROOZ] in Persian means New[-year]-day. It is the beginning of the year for the people of Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Iran,and Tajikistan. It begins precisely with the beginning of spring on vernal equinox, on about March 21. Tradition takes Nowruz as far back as 15,000 years -- before the last ice age. King Jamshid (Yima or Yama of the Indo-Iranian lore) symbol izes the transition of the lndo-Iranians from animal hunting to animal husbandry and a more settled life in human history. Seasons played a vital part then. Everything depended on the four seasons. After a evere winter, the beginning of spring was a great occasion with 路mother nature rising up in a green robe of colorful flowers and the cattle delivering their young. It was the dawn of abundance. Jamshid is said to be the person who introduced Nowruz celebrations. NOWRUZ TABLE

but I am a good preservative. I add taste to the thing you want to preserve and relish. I symbolize tasty preservation. Second Plate: I am SUMAC, exotic in my own way, I make your favorite kabobs have a tangy taste, a taste you relish. I symbolize taste. Third Plate: I am SIR, garlic. Some may not like my aroma and others love it. I lower blood pressure. I pacify. I symbolize peace. Fourth Plate: I am SAMANU, a sweetish paste, made from germinating wheat. I symbolize the sprouting spring, the time for happy growth. Fifth Plate: I am SIB, apple. I symbolize the fruits of our world, both literally and allegorically. Sixth Plate: I am SENJED, the tasteless berry of the sorb tree. I am the fruit of a tree which provides shade in summer. I symbolize the shelter and security you need when you want a rest. Seventh Plate: I am SABZI,jresh green herbs. I come from green fields. I ymbolize prosperity. The seven plates with SH tell us: First Plate: I am SHARAB, the

wine. I am the nectar. I ymbolize health and happiness, of course, if taken in moderation! To your health! Second Plate: I am SHAKAR, sugar. I give your favorite foods their sweetness. I symbolize sweetness. Third Plate: I am SlDR, milk, the first food one tastes in this world. I symbolize nourishing food. Fourth Plate: I am SHIREH, syrup. I am the sap, the fluid essential for life, health and vigor. I symbolize vigorous health. Fifth Plate: I SHAHD, honey. I am the sweet produce of the cooperative bee . I symbolize the sweet result of team work. Sixth Plate: I am SHIRINI, candy, loved by those have a sweet tooth. I simply symbolize sweetness with no sign of bitterness Seventh Plate: I am SHIR路 BERENJ, rice-pudding, a tasty food. I symbolize food for taste and health.

Today, the ceremony has been simplified. A table is laid. It has a copy of the sacred book, a Saint' picture, a mirror, candles, incense burner, bowl of water with live gold fish, the plates and vessels with green sprouts, flowers, fruit, coins, bread, sugar cone, various grains, fresh, colorfully painted boiled eggs like "Easter eggs," and above all, seven articles with their names beginning in Persian with the letter S (seen) or SH(sheen). The usual things with Sare vinegar, sumac, garlic, samanu (consistency of germinating wheat), apple, Addition to table senjed (sorb), and herbs. Those with an initial letter SH The mirror reflects our past and shows us our include wine, sugar, syrup, honey, candy, milk, and rice- present so that we thoughtfully plan our future. The candles pudding. The seven articles are prominently exhibited in - are light, warmth, and energy to lead a righteous life that small bowls or plates on the table. The table is laid with a would, in turn, radiate light, give warmth, and provide enwhite cloth. White represents spotless purity. Let me de- ergy for others. The incense burner gives the fragrance we fine the significance of the seven plates of S and seven need to meditate, pray to God, and ask for help and guidplates of SH. Those with S inform us: ance. The gold fish symbolizes a happy life, full of activity First Plate: I am SERKEH, the vinegar. I am sour

see page 31


Arts & Entertainment Well, the months have passed and it's time for another column. It seems that there has been a quickening of pace and events all around and that the role of the arts is becoming increasingly significant. Much has been going on amongst the artists in and around our L.A. Baba community. We would love to include information about other groups and areas as well, so please send us notices and keep us informed. "Work with me."

Richard Arthur

The Still Yet More Chamber Players, Pris and Chris Haffenden have been making a name for themselves at various venues around town, with Pris on guitar and Chris on oboe playing from Baroque to the Beatles. Call them @ (310) 390-2779 for their current

performance schedule, to book them for a private gathering or to have Chris come and tune your piano. Fred Stankus continues tirelessly to produce segments on Meher Baba for public acce s television. See July lOon the program schedule... Sculptor and painter Jurgis Sapkus, whom the L.A. group has known for years for his marvelous sculpted busts of Meher Baba, had a lovely showing at The Artist's

Studio Gallery in Rancho Palos Verdes in April and May...Billy Goodrum placed an original song in the new film Kingpin, on which he plays and sings. Look for the soundtrack. The film also features the acting work of east coast resident Prudence. Performance artist Rosalee Dunphy has been entertaining around town at various theaters and coffee houses. Hers is a unique blend of organic improvisation and movement, "Improve- ing" as she calls it. You can call her at the L.A. Baba center @ (310) 474-9454 for her pelformance schedule as well as inquiries about various "open" performing venues around town seeking new talent... Tamara Mark radiated in her performance in the contemporary one act play A Man And A Woman. Yours truly is penning this article from the set of director Barry (Get Shorty) Sonenfeld's latest outing Men In Black, where I'm working for Academy Award winning make-up master Rick Baker as an extra terrestrial alien. And so it is in the Beloved's Divine Play, a few notes from around. "Art when inspired with Love leads to higher realms. Love art and that art will open for you the inner life." Meher Baba

Please send you.r notices and il~formationto Richard Arthur c/o MV Entertainment 615 Midvale Ave. L.A., CA. 90024.

And Acting So Cool

A Potted Plant

The whole world just got thick The whole world just got thick Again with God. And everywhere I look Makes me feel very proud That all the objects and creatures Can remain looking So poised And acting so cool While keeping the Great Secret Sowell. And not blissfully shout All day long the Reality IAmI Am the Wine! The whole Wl.i verse just got stoned Out of its mind again On the Beauty Of God.

I pull a sun from my coin purse each day. And at night I let my pet the moon Run freely into the sky meadow. If I whistled, She would tum her head and lookatme. If I then waved myanns, She would come back wagging a marvelous tail Of stars. There are always a few men like me In this world Who are house-sitting for God. We share His royal duties: I water each day a favorite potted plant Of HisThis earth. Ask the Friend for love. Ask Him again. ForI have leamtthatevery heart will get What it prays for Most.

From The Subjcct tonight is Love


NEWS FROM INDIA James Cox

March It was cloudy this afternoon, and at about 6 pm, we were hit with a tremendous wind and horizontal rain storm, over one inch. Most unseasonable. It feels really chilly now, but the thermometer says 76. Gotta get out a blanket!

This morning Katherine and I were sitting with Mansari talking about fights. Mansari said that her uncle always said that all disagreements were really misunderstandings, and that frequent arguments and fights used to crop up amongst the women on the hill (I'm sure never amongst the men, though. ) She asked, "Do you think we were saints? Baba used to say that it is good to fight and let the other one know how you feel. Keeping it inside just prolongs it, and is also unhealthy. But once you have gotten it out, break the ice (initially misunderstood by Mansari as "eyes"), and start talking again. Don't shut yourself off. Talk about anything, like, 'Isn't that a funny dog?' or whatever you like, but break the ice." I also asked her if she ever saw Baba get mad at Mehera, and she said, "Yes, but it was very-mild, like Mehera would try to feed Him something, and he would say not now, and she would say, 'But you always say not now,' and Baba would say sternly, 'But I know what I like.''' Earlier at Arti, Sam Kerawala had told a story about a thief at the time of Mohammed. It references another story which Eruch tells of how a thief approached Mohammed and told Him that he was a thief from a long line of thieves, and what should he do? Should he continue this lifestyle? Mohammed said yes, provided you do 3 things I. Never take everything, always leave the person something so they are not destitute. 2. If you hear the call to prayer, drop everything, and attend to your prayers. 3 Always tell the truth. So after Mohammed's death, during the rule of Abu Bakr, the first Caliph, another thief in the same line took Mohammed's instructions to his kinsman as standing orders and continued to operate accordingly. At that time, it was the habit of Abu Bakr to have a round in the night to see how his subjects were, and in so doing, he came upon this thief. Abu Bakr asked him what he did, and the man answered that he stole for a living. Abu Bakr said that he was also a thief, and asked what was the man's target that night. The thief said that it was the royal treasury, so Abu Bakr asked if he could accompany him, and the thief agreed. They proceeded to break a hole in the wall of the treasury building, and the thief told Abu

Bakr that he did not appear very experienced in these matters, and that it would be better if the thief went inside and brought out the gold, to which Abu Bakr agreed. Shortly afterward the thief emerged with 2 bags of gold, and gave Abu Bakr one, saying that there had been 3, but he left one, as it would have created an argument as to whom should get it. They then parted ways. The next morning, Abu Bakr called his treasurer, and asked for an inventory. The treasurer, upon finding a theft had been committed and that there was still one bag of gold left, thought that this was his chance, so he took the third bag, and reported that the thief had taken all the gold. The Caliph, knowing the real story, had the treasurer arrested and sent for the thief. The robber, upon seeing Abu Bakr, the previous night's fellow larcenist, received a great shock, but because he was also smart, said to the Caliph, "Before you have me taken away, please remember our friendshi p of last night." Abu Bakr laughed, and said that because the thief had been honest, he was not having him taken away, but on the contrary, was making him the new royal treasurer. Perhaps at some point in the future, there will be a compilation of Arti sories, as told by Sam Kerawala.

June 12th Sarah Schall said on Friday that her thermometer in the Nurse's Quarters was registering 122 around 3 pm, so she put it in her fridge to cool it down, and when she took it out, it went back to 122. I don't know if it was really that hot in her room, but most places at Meherabad were definitely over 110, and the farsee under the Sabha Mandap at arti time felt like it had just come out of an oven. Hopefully that was the finale, because on Saturday it clouded up, sprinkled a little, and the mercury didn't go over 100. I know it must be hard to imagine 100 as cool, but it sure felt that way in comparison. We've had light sprinkles and thunder ever since, the temperature at 10 pm in Meherabad tonight a balmy 86 with a light breeze. Quite human. The water situation here is tolerable, and it looks like there won't be any problem to open the Pilgrim Center on June 15, as scheduled. The Trust Office has two new phone numbers, and they are 343666 and 347093, replacing the old 23666 and 27093 numbers. Continued on page 27


I Heard God Laughing "renderings" of Hafiz in clear, direct and contemporary styIe. Dan Ladinsky, a resident of Myrtle Beach, began Mr. Ladinsky describes his work as "releasing the spirit of his work with Hafiz at Meherazad during an extended stay Hafiz a spirit of infinite tenderness and compassion, of great with the mandali. I Heard God Laughing releases the Spirit exuberance, joy and laughter, of ecstatic love and fervent of Hafiz longing for his several years ago. I Heard God Laughing offers a selection of sparkling poems presented in a handsome volume with a cover designed by the artist Diane Meher Baba's favorite poet, Hafiz, is given a fresh, Cobb. The book includes an informative biography of Hafiz vibrant interpretation in a new book, I Heard God Laugh- and an annotated bibliography. Altogether, this is a delightful and very readable introduction to the ing, by Daniel Ladinsky. For seven hunlife and work of Meher Baba's most bedred years, Hafiz has been the most be1 Heard God Lallghing loved poet. loved of the Persian poets, more popular Rel/deril/g! oj'Hqjiz in the East than even his great predeces'. sor, Rumi. Meher Baba explained that the I Heard God Laughing published by Sufism Reoriented, Walnut Creek, poetry of Hafiz is unique in world literature because Hafiz celebrates every exCalifornia. which publishes books by and pression of love in the universe. Hafiz about Meher Baba. They have published describes the richness and beauty of the God Speaks, Listen Humanity, Beams, the first American edition of the Discourses world when seen through the eyes of love. (in three volumes) Ramjoo 's Diaries, the And he portrays all the stages and profirst volume of Bal Natu's Glimpses of cesses of inner unfolding that transform the God-man and How A Master Works human love into divine love. His poetry by Ivy O. Duce. The editorial board of can be read as a record of a human being's Sufism Reoriented was delighted by Mr. journey to perfect joy, perfect knowing and perfect love. Meher Baba described Hafiz as "a Perfect Ladinsky's fresh approach to Hafiz and welcomed the opportunity to bring these new "renderings" of Meher Baba's Master and a perfect poet." favorite poet to a wider audience. Translations of Hafiz into English have rarely attracted Western readers primarily because the structure of I Heard God Laughing, 180 pages, paperback, retails for Persian poetry often seems awkward and stilted when it is $14, plus shipping., recast in English. Daniel Ladinsky overcomes this problem. His innovative approach offers not "translations" but

I Heard God Laughing, Renderings of Hafiz by Daniel Ladinsky

Reviewed by John Page Hafiz, who lived in Persia some six hundred years ago, was Meher Baba's favorite poet. Hafiz's poetry, which Beloved Baba descried as "matchless," describes the Path of Love wherein human love is transformed into divine love. His poetry reveals the intricacies of the relationship between the lover and the Beloved and imbues the entire divine relationship with lightness, humor and joy! Baba revealed that Hafiz also became a Perfect Master after having broken his head at his master, Attar's feet for decades

Meher Baba often quoted couplets of Hafiz's and even had certain ones posted.. The three that Baba wanted us to become thoroughly stained with are: I) Befitting a fortunate slave, carry out every command of the Master without any question of why or what; 2) About what you hear from the Master, never say it is wrong, because my dear the fault lies in your own incapacity to understand him; 3) I am the slave of the Master who has released me from ignorance. Whatever my Master does is of the highest benefit to all concerned. Baba Lovers who have frequented Meherabad and Meherazad in recent years have no doubt met Dan see page 31


ANNOUNCEMENT SECTION A VISIT TO DANA FIELD is planned on Aug.8th from 1-3pm at Beverly Manor Convalescent Home in West Covina (off#60 Fwy.) Entertainment and sharing with Dana planned. If you would like to attend please contact the Center or Mehernoush at 818.368.3800.evenings.

With special Guests (who were there with Baba in 1956) Bili Eaton,Tex Hightower, Marguerite Poley, Adele Wolkin. I What to bring: a picnic lunch (not a pot luck), a picnic blanket, water, a hat, sun screen. For direction or a map call Meher Mount: 805 640-0000

A NEW COAT OF PAINT FOR THE CENTER Many thanks to Peter Ravazza and his wife Kathleen Weiderhold, Louis Montez, Kamal Tabatabaei, and Harry Thomas for the generous support and assistance to the painting of the exterior.

AUDIO TAPE LENDING LIBRARY Do you ever find yourself in a "dry spell" spiritually?, are you bored from listening to the same old negative news, weather and travel on your way to work? would you rather have something inspiring to listen to? do you need an interesting theme for your Baba meetings? ...Well the audio library has many interesting, intellectually stimulating discourses on life with Baba. We have over 150 titles just waiting to be delved into by inquiring minds. What unsuspecting treasures to behold! Don't waste your time on this tired old world any longer. Make your choice to move into the cosmic Baba linkup. Lynne Berry (official tape walla) is ready to assist you. For catalog or info: AMB Lending Audio Library c/o Lynne Berry, 267 Hanover Dr. Costa Mesa, Ca 92626

STUDY AND DISCUSSION EVENINGS AT ADELE WOLKIN'S HOME...Beginning in July Adele is hosting Friday night meetings at 7:30 at her home for an intellectual repast and heart warming evening of reading and discussions of Baba's life and teachings. Everyone welcome. Her home address is: 714-A S. Pacific Coast Hwy in Redondo Beach. Phone her at 310.540.8404. "LORD MEHER" DISCUSSION GROUP BEGINNING JULY 17 on Wednesdays at the Center, 7:30pm. All are welcome to attend mid week discussion group led by Fred Stankus to explore in detail Baba's life and work. Fred can be reached at 213.257.8371. ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION AT MEHER MOUNT 50 years of preservation, 40 years of sanctification, Let's join together in celebration. Celebrating Meher Baba's visit to Meher Mount in August 1956 and the establishment of Meher Mount in 1946 as a place dedicated to him.

VIDEO LffiRARY Another treasure trove of inspiring talks is available through the video rental library. Seeing the guest speakers again from the L.A. Sahavas,from the many years past,brings back old memories from so many good times of Baba enrichment which the L.A. Sahavas has never failed to provide. We have many titles from over ten years to choose from. These are also excellent for meeting themes. For a complete listing of titles and particulars write to: AMBC-SC VIDEO CASSEITE LIBRARY, P.O. BOX 3247, SO.PASADENA, CA 91031-6247 or Karina Page, evening phone: 213.225.3910.

Saturday, August 3, 1996 9:30am to 5:00pm

NEWS FROM INDIA May 20, the anniversary of Mehera's passing was observed at the Samadhi by about 60 friends and relatives, with all of the women mandali coming from Meherazad. Mani, de spite her recent health problems, looked frail but radiant, and we were all very happy to see her there, only the second time she has come to Meherabad since Amartithi. Mani also commented on how she had missed being able to come, and despite her poor health, she made a special point of greeting everyone present, more so than usual.

difficult to write about. We hope to see many of you this coming year, as Meherabad continues to gear up for the ever increasing number of His lovers wishing to visit his Tomb.

Outwardly, that is about all that has happened in May, but the inner changes continue unabated, and are much more

It is remarkably contagious - So kiss me.

The Happy Virus

I From The Subject tonight

is Love

I caught the happy virus last night When I was out singing beneath the stars.


Letter from the Archives and Museum Committee of the Avatar Meher Saba Trust This letter is to inform Beloved Avatar Meher Baba's lovers around the world of the plans that His mandali are now preparing for the conservation of Meher Baba's personal articles, as well as the correspondence, diaries, photographs, films, tapes, and other records associated with His Advent. When Beloved Baba walked this earth as the beautiful God-Man, He left His imprint in everything and everyone that He touched. The dishes that He ate from and the cups that He drank from, the clothes that He wore, the games that He played with, the sticks and stones and other assorted tokens of love that He received as gifts from the "masts" (or God-intoxicated souls), His own precious nails and hair preserved and treasured by His beloved Mehera- these tangible links to Him come to us today suffused with His fragrance.

Keith Gunn, and other volunteers, much of the planning and preliminary cataloguing has now been completed. At this juncture we feel it is timely to set forth some of the vision and prospects of this vast and ongoing project before Meher Baba's worldwide family.

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What gives this conservation work such singular imc.....-- __ ,............. portance is the fact that Baba 081e _ (Miss) MANIJA SHERIAR IRANI Himself, when He was in the Hay 18th, 1996 The Love Street Lamp Post physical form, had intimated Attn. Dina Franklin Avatar Heber Baba center of Southern California 10B08 Santa MoDica Boulevard that the things closely assoLos Angeles, CA 90025 ciated with Him should be Dear Dina. Accompanying this letter to you 1s a Circular from preserved for posterity. Even the Archives and Musewn Cotllll'littee of the Avatar Heher Baba Trust wbich raakes public for the first time the Trust' S . when the ashram was being plans for the preservation of Beloved Avatar Heher Baba' s personal articles and various docum9.nts associated wi th His life and work. disbanded and its various efIt would be greatly appreciated if you could. print fects given away or sold off the enclosed circular in an upcoming issue or The Love Street LamP Post. A copy of this will also be sent to other Baba newsletters to reach out to as wide a range as in preparation for the New possible of Saba's ever-growing family. Wi th much love to you and. all Baba' s dear ones in Life, from which, Baba your area from your Heherazad family. warned, He and His companIn His all-encOlllpassing Love'.. ions would never return, still Meheru R. Irani He ordered that His used perP.S. Please let us know that this letter has reached you. sonal articles should be So too, the letters that He wrote and that were written to saved and stored in the East Him, the diaries and reminisRoom of Meher Retreat in cences, the accounts and chits Upper Meherabad. And after and records of His daily activities, the photographs and the New Life when Baba was residing again, in Meherazad, films that capture His image, and more recently, the audio annually Naja and Rano were sent to Meherabad to check and video recordings of the recollections of His close through all the trunks and make sure that their contents were ones-all of these register otherwise perishable memories in good order and pest-free. of details and fragments in that matchless Story that is the The women Mandali still remember an occasion Divine Life that He led. from the Meherazad years when Baba's beloved Mehera Baba's mandali have long been aware of the need brought Him an old sadra, tom and threadbare with wear, to take in hand the task of safeguarding for posterity these and asked Him what she should do with it 'Send it to the precious articles and records connected with His life, a task East Room at Meherabad," Baba gestured. "You have no which they regard as almost comparable in importance with idea what just one scrap of My sadra will mean to the world the preservation of Baba's Tomb. It was with this respon- in the future." Although Mehera had been entrusted with sibility in view that two years ago Mani, Baba's sister and the charge of Baba's personal belongings, she never felt the Chairman of the Avatar Meher Baba Trust, created the she should give them away to those who asked without first Archives and Museum Committee and appointed Meheru asking Baba. Sometimes with a particular item Baba would Irani, Bhau Kalchuri, Meherwan Jessawala, and Framroze say, "No, not that one-that one should be kept." Thus was Mistry as members. With the help of Janet and Ted Judson, Baba Himself making provision for His lovers in the days Meredith Klein, Dot Lesnik. Beth Ganz, Sheila Krynski, to come. lONG'S ROAD, AHMEOHA04R .4"001 .......IIIU.SleM.IHDtA.

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Some of these old treasures were deeply connected and interwoven with certain phases of Baba's life. During the 1920s, for example, Baba continuously wore the "kamli coat" and andals which, whenever in need of repair, were given to be patched or mended and immediately returned for His use. Eventually the kamli coat had become a virtual quilt in which patche covered mo t of the original material, and Hi andal had been stitched and strung together so many times that His feet were supporting and carrying them more than they were Him: yet He continued to wear them nonethele s. Several decades later, during the sahavas of September, 1954 Baba had them hown to the visiting Westerners and commented, "What the coat has in it will be revealed after I drop the body. Then thousands and thousand of men and women will come to wor hip." Baba's sadras, His alphabet board, His precious hair-each is a unique and irreplaceable link to His human form. Yet the written records serve a a different kind of reminder of Him, for they register the facts and details of His life. Over the nearly five decades of Hi mini try, Baba sustained an enormous cOITespondence, and these letters open many window to intimacie of exchange between the Beloved and His dear ones. Chanji, Adi, Mani, Eruch, Bhau, Bal, and others took part in this daily activity of Baba's, and He expected them to give it their scrupulou attention. The Trust archives contain many other treasures, including even small "chits" or hand-scrawled messages conveying Baba's instructions to the mandali. Of special importance are the diaries of close disciples such as Chanji and Ramjoo, which preserve stories and accounts that would otherwi e have been forgotten. The Trust archives have already served disciples writing Baba's biography under His direction, as they will undoubtedly serve generations of biographer, historians, and assorted scholar in the future. And of course a unique gift to humanity in this particular Advent are the photographs and films which are preserving His image for the eyes and hearts of millions. Baba once told Mani that His photos should be spread throughout the world. Modem technology has also made possible many hundreds and thousands of hours of audio and video recording of the reminiscences ofBaba's mandali;

and these too contain gems of story and in ight that must not be lost. These things that bear His touch and imprint have the power to touch the heart. They need to be preserved so that future humanity can savor the fragrance of Him that they carry.

Work Completed So Far With this goal inview, for the past two years the Archives and Museum Committee has vigorously been researching archival and mu eum conservation methods. In His own unique way Baba has expedited this process by making available expert guidance and consultation from some of the world's topmost authorities. The Director of the Museum Support Center for the Smithsonian Institution and the Registrar of the United State ational Park Service paid personal visits to Meherabad and Meherazad, and the Conervator in Charge of Textiles at the Metropolitan Museum, in New York has given us valuable advice.

In accordance with the recommendations of these and other leading experts, the cataloguing and temporary packing of Baba's precious belongings is under way. Special efforts have been made in this process to record whenever possible the mandali's recollections of these treasures. Meanwhile, we have been planning for the preservation of fragile documents and for the scanning of their contents which will ensure that a digital "image" of each page urvives even if the paper itself decays. Eventually, we hope, much of this historical and biographical material will be published in some form or made available through the "information highway" that is currently revolutionizing communications in this technological age. All of these plans depend upon the creation of an adequate building facility; and to meet this need, over the la t year architectural de igns for the Conservation Building have been drafted and finalized. The chosen site lies at the foot of the northeast edge of the Hill in Upper Cont. on page 34


Life Is A Pair 0' Ducks Video br Wodin. Pair'O Ducks AllimatiollStudios. /996. stereo video. 2 vols.. 40 mill. each

World premiere of 'Life is a Pair

0'

Ducks' is big hit!

by Vicki Warner

There's a sweet and gentle charm that permeates Life is a Pair 0 ' Ducks, the sixteen tales written and illustrated by Wodin, the professional name of Steve Jameson. But there's more than charm in this collection of fictional video stories about Meher Baba. There's strength and humor and insights of universal truth in these short vignettes of daily life and how folks manage to live it. "When you work with Baba, you never know what you'll be doing next," says the character in "Washing Leopards." All sorts of people and animals populate the Wodin stories. There are bunnies and chicks and tigers, a little baby in a gentle world, a grieving widow, a despairing sailor, the EI Paso sewing society among others and Baba and Mehera and Mani. One begins. "When Mehera died, Baba met her and together they walked up a mountain path in the Kentucky Appalachians where heaven lies." Arthur Kimball plays a beautiful guitar solo in this one. In another, Baba is playing poker with a wildebeest, a walrus, a grasshopper and a bear. The narrator reads. "Baba enjoyed his time with these surly companions." The song, , Ah Sweet Mystery of Life." plays in the background. The narrator goes on. "Baba didn't enjoy so-called spiritual wimps and fuddy-duddies." The basis of the whole enterprise is the delightful art of the supremely talented Wodin- bright winsome, imaginative, 'playful," he calls it-which the amazing Video camera work raises to a pinnacle. The video graph was conceived, created and designed by Chris Riger, an Emmy award winner who was also the production designer of Meher Baba's Call and the

cinematographer and editor of the just released Eternal Beloved.Chris calls his concept "semianimation." Shooting a still painting, the camera movements themselves are the animating factor. He might start with an extreme close up of a leopard's spot, then bounce to Baba's face and slowly slide to his eyes and linger there, then ease back for a long shot of the whole scene. Sometimes Chris' camera glides languidly, sometimes it bounces in a little tick-tock dance, and many times it devotedly caresses a leaf or a face or even a bit of confetti floating around Guruprasad. The orchestration of his shots has pace, rhythm and syncopation. It is extraordinary. To enhance the effect, birds twitter, horses whinny, and horns honk (a recording of the mandali's car). In "Pandal Merry-Go-Round," the background crowd murmurs are a recording of Indian people at a past Amanithi. Authenticity! Original music was composed and synthesized by Kem Kraft. a scorewriter for Hollywood films. His new version of "Begin the Beguine" is lush, exotic and tropical. One of the 16 stories is not from Wodin's pen, but Mani S. Irani's. She reads "Two Ducks" from her book, God-Brother. Other narrators are Beth McKee, Martha Williams, Robert Berryman, Hannah McKee, Dennery Delienne, Jane Haynes, Ann Conlon, Sher DiMaggio, Sue DiSabatino and Steve Jameson. At the premiere showing on February 23, the Meeting Place at Meher Spiritual Center had a full house that was enchanted and enthusiastic. After all the accolades at the premiere showing, Chris and Steve might well have quoted the little boy in "Lemonade Party" who said, "I lay in bed and mused over the pleasures that I enjoyed today."

Reprinted by permission from the White Horse Journal. Now available for $29.95 each at the Bookstore.


Review of Murshida, The Story of a Spiritual Guide by Ralph Lewis in Meher Baba Association, England, Newsletter This is the story of Ivy Duce, the Murshida of the Sufi order in the USA. This was founded by Inayat Khan. After his death Murshida Rabia Martin began her search for a master and realized that Meher Baba was such a one. Murshida Martin surrendered to Meher Baba and dedicated her Order to Him but she died before she met Meher Baba and it was left to Ivy Duce to meet Him and place the Order under Him.

1923. In 1933 a crisis caused by illness led her to plunge into metaphysical studies and thence to Sufism. Sufism simply means wisdom and teaches transformation of our lower selves. Baba said, "I love Sufism with all My heart" and after Ivy Duce met Him produced a Charter for Sufism Reoriented. Baba came to Myrtle Beach in 1952 and in this video there are many pictures of Baba. There are shots of Him with the alphabet board, in the USA in 1956 and at the East West Gathering giving darshan. There is also film of Mani writing to Baba lovers and finally sequences of the entombment and Mehera.

The video opens with Ivy Duce talking of Meher Baba as the spirit of illumination and Baba ordered Ivy Duce to love. Over shots of the ocean are visit His Tomb and thus setting spoken quotes of Baba, "I always the process for all Sufis. He was, I always am and always will said of her that she was "born be. I am the Ancient One." The on My Birthday and born to soundtrack is made up of songs love and serve me." The video from the Sufi Choir. Ivy Duce's MEHER BABA AT MEHERAZAD, JANUARY 8, 1948 Left 10 rigll/.jrol/I roll': Mal/ija. Charmial/. Meherll. clos~s with a talk by Ivy Duce life is traced from her early love Bach IVlr: D,: Coha Mehera. Meher Baba. Eli::.abelh to a Sufi gathering on the New of singing to service in the Red Pallersol/. II'." Duce. Norina MalcJwbel/i. Life and New Humanity. It is a Cross in the First World War and then for two years after the war riding over the Andes on talk that shows her love for Baba horseback. She married an international businessman in

I Heard God Laughing, Renderings of Hafiz Ladinsky, the author of I Heard God Laughing, Renderings of Hafiz. Who knew that he would write an innovative and vibrant, interpretative book of Hafiz's poetry? Dan's book is different - very different from other books that you may have read of Hafiz. And inn my opinion, it's also much better ... it's certainly more accessible. It is a vibrant interpretation. Why such a bold statement? It's because Dan renders and interprets Hafiz's poems rather than translating them. Past authors have usually translated Hafiz's works from the Persian and then attempted to put them into some Western version with our ideas of meter, rhyme and rhythm. Although this method has given us some memorable and inspirational translations of the great master's poetry it also left us with many poems that have a clumsy, stilted, and awkward feel. Such careful efforts to be true

to the form of Hafiz's poetry often left its exquisite beauty unrevealed. Dan has taken selected poems from H. Wilberforce Clarke's famous translation of Hafiz's poetry and carefully rendered them into English - and English that all can relate to. This is what Dan has given in his renderings. We have Sufism Reoriented and Hank Mindlin to thank for this wonderful book. Sufism Reoriented published it and Hank, the book's consulting editor, has given us a 14 page supplement about the life and times of Hafiz. The book also contains a selected bibliography. Here is a delightful smattering from selections of Dan's "Renderings." See page 35


Review of Murshida, The Story of a Spiritual Guide by Ralph Lewis in Meher Baba Association, England, Newsletter This is the story of Ivy Duce, the Murshida of the Sufi order in the USA. This was founded by Inayat Khan. After his death Murshida Rabia Martin began her search for a master and realized that Meher Baba was such a one. Murshida Martin surrendered to Meher Baba and dedicated her Order to Him but she died before she met Meher Baba and it was left to Ivy Duce to meet Him and place the Order under Him.

1923. In 1933 a crisis caused by illness led her to plunge into metaphysical studies and thence to Sufism. Sufism simply means wisdom and teaches transformation of our lower selves. Baba said, "I love Sufism with all My heart" and after Ivy Duce met Him produced a Charter for Sufism Reoriented. Baba came to Myrtle Beach in 1952 and in this video there are many pictures of Baba. There are shots of Him with the alphabet board, in the USA in 1956 and at the East West Gathering giving darshan. There is also film of Mani writing to Baba lovers and finally sequences of the entombment and Mehera.

The video opens with Ivy Duce talking of Meher Baba as the spirit of illumination and Baba ordered Ivy Duce to love. Over shots of the ocean are visit His Tomb and thus setting spoken quotes of Baba, "I always the process for all Sufis. He was, I always am and always will said of her that she was "born be. I am the Ancient One." The on My Birthday and born to soundtrack is made up of songs love and serve me." The video from the Sufi Choir. Ivy Duce's MEHER BABA AT MEHERAZAD, JANUARY 8, 1948 Left to rigllt.jrol/t roll': Mal/ija. Cllarmial/. Mellel'u. c1os~s with a talk by Ivy Duce life is traced from her early love Bacll IVI\': D/: Gallet: Mellera. Meller Baba. Eli:abetll to a Sufi gathering on the New of singing to service in the Red Pattersol/. 11'.\' Duce. Noril/a Matc/label/i. Life and New Humanity. It is a Cross in the First World War and then for two years after the war riding over the Andes on talk that shows her love for Baba horseback. She married an international businessman in

i-:

I Heard God Laughing, Renderings of Hafiz Ladinsky, the author of I Heard God Laughing, Renderings of Hafiz. Who knew that he would write an innovative and vibrant, interpretative book of Hafiz's poetry? Dan's book is different - very different from other books that you may have read of Hafiz. And inn my opinion, it's also much better ... it's certainly more accessible. It is a vibrant interpretation. Why such a bold statement? It's because Dan renders and interprets Hafiz's poems rather than translating them. Past authors have usually translated Hafiz's works from the Persian and then attempted to put them into some Western version with our ideas of meter, rhyme and rhythm. Although this method has given us some memorable and inspirational translations of the great master's poetry it also left us with many poems that have a clumsy, stilted, and awkward feel. Such careful efforts to be true

to the form of Hafiz's poetry often left its exquisite beauty unrevealed. Dan has taken selected poems from H. Wilberforce Clarke's famous translation of Hafiz's poetry and carefully rendered them into English - and English that all can relate to. This is what Dan has given in his renderings. We have Sufism Reoriented and Hank Mindlin to thank for this wonderful book. Sufism Reoriented published it and Hank, the book's consulting editor, has given us a 14 page supplement about the life and times of Hafiz. The book also contains a selected bibliography. Here is a delightful smattering from selections of Dan's "Renderings." See page 35


~.V~*G~.~~*G~.~~*G~.~~*0

Prayer as Inner Approach Dictated by Avatar Meher Baba For most persons, the outer ceremonies and rituals prevalent in the diverse religions are the established approach to God and Divinity. They are regarded as indispensable. However, they are neither essential nor necessary, though at times they have been allowed or given by masters by way of inevitable accommodation to human weakness. They may also be practiced with benefit when they are thus allowed or given by a master, but only during the period for which they have been prescribed, and in the context in which they are intended to be given effect. They have no lasting' value nor can they be made eternally binding. They were never essential or indispensable; they are never essential or indispensable; and they will never be essential or indispenable. What constitutes the essence of prayer? Many prayers to God are current among the lovers of God, arising as they do from diverse cultural contexts. Some of the prayers invariably contain an element of asking something from God, either material or spiritual. In fact, God is so merciful and bountiful that even without their asking He always gives much more than His lovers can receive. He knows their real needs more deeply than they do. Therefore the element of asking something from God is superfluous. It often mars the inner love and worship which a prayer tries to express. The ideal prayer to the Lord is nothing more than spontaneous praise of His being. You praise Him, not in the spirit of bargain but in the spirit of selfforgetful appreciation of what He really is. You praise Him because He is praiseworthy. Your praise is a spontaneous appreciative response to His true being, as infinite light, infinite power and infinite bliss. It is futile to attempt a standard prayer and hold it up as an ideal for all people of all times. The glory of the Almighty transcends all human understanding and defies all verbal descriptions. Eternally fresh and selfrenewing in its unlimited amplitude, it never fades. Nor is it ever confined within the limits of the best of hymns. All hymns and prayers reach out towards the eternal Truth of Godhead only to merge those who utter them in silent and unending adoration. If by ideal prayer to the Lord is meant a set formula, any search for it is a wild goose chase. All prayers ultimately initiate the soul into an ever deepening silence of sweet adoration; and all formulae are dissolved and assimilated into the integral and direct appreciative perception of divine Truth. That which seeks to reach towards the immeasurable, itself becomes incapable of being measured by any set standards. The ritu-

alistic and repetitive expressions of prayer do not and cannot do justice to the innermost essence of prayer, which is adoring love for the eternal Beloved. To attempt to standardize prayer is to mar its intrinsic beauty. If you pray with a motive to do good to some one, your prayer may actually bring about good both to him and to yourself. Some people pray for the spiritual benefit of those who have done them some wrong. There also, they are helping others spiritually. But all prayers with a motive fall short of the ideal prayer which is without motive. In the entire spiritual panorama of the universe nothing is more sublime than a spontaneous prayer. It gushes out of the human heart, tilled with appreciative joy. It is self expression of the freed spirit without any actuation of a motive. In its highest form, prayer leaves no room for the illusory diarchy of the lover and the Beloved. It is a return to one's own being.

Prayer for Westerners On another occasion at Meherabad after Meher Baba had been explaining the Bhagavad Gita to some of the Western disciples, He gave them the following Western hymn to memorize and added 'Everything in the Gita is expressed in these few lines by the Western mystic.' .... MEHER BABA JOURNAL, MAY 1940

Take my life and let it be Consecrated, Lord to Thee. Take my moments and my days, Let them flow in ceaseless praise. Take my hands and let them move, At the impulse of thy love. Take my feet and let them be Swift and beautiful for Thee. Take my voice and let me sing Ever only for my King. Take my lips and let them be Filled with messages from Thee. Take my solver and my gold, Not a mite would I withhold Take my intellect and use Every power as Thou shalt choose. Take my will and make it Thine; It shall be no longer mine. Take my heart, it is Thine own, It shall be Thy royal throne. Take my love, My Lord, I pour At Thy feet its treasure store. Take myself, and I will be Ever, only, all for Thee.


The 101 NaInes of God 011 2-4-1963, at a Poolla gatherillg Beloved Baba said, "If you repeat this prayer with Love. Anyone can repeat these names with Love, irrespective of the religion he belollgs to. "

110

other prayer remains to be said.

.... MEHERBABA I. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. II. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27.

Yazad Harvesp-tawan Harvesp-Agah Harvesp-Khoda Abadeh Abi-Anjam Bun-e-stiha Frakhtan-taih Jamaga Prajtarah Tum-aflk Abaravand Paravandeh An-ayafeh Hama-Ayafeh Adro Gira A-chern Chamana Safana Afza Nasha Parwara Ianaha Ain-aenah An-aenah Kharoshid-tum

28. 29. 30. 31. 32. 33. 34. 35. 36. 37. 38. 39. 40. 41. 42. 43. 44. 45. 46. 47. 48. 49. 50. 51. 52. 53.

Mino-tum Vasna Harvastum Hu-sepas Har-Hamid Har-naik-faraih Baish-tarana Taronish Anah-aoshal;a Farasaka Pajohdehad Khwafar Avakhshiaea Abaraja A-satoha Rakhoha Varun A-faretah Be-fareftah A-dui Kam-rad Farman-kam Aekh Tan A-faremosh Hamarna Sanaea

... Worthy of Worship ... All-Powerful ... All-Knowing ... Lord of All ... Without Beginning ... Without End ... Root of Creation ... Endless Bliss ... Primal Cause ... Exalted One ... Purest of the Pure ... Detached from All ... In Touch with All ... Unattainable ... Attainer of All ... Most Rit,hteous ... Upholder of All ... Beyond Reason ... Soverign Reason ... Bountiful One ... Ever Prolific ... Reaching Equally to All ... Nourisher ... Protector of the World ... Never Changing ... Formless ... MostSteadfast among the Steadfast ... Lord Invisible ... All Pervading ... All-in-AII ... Worthy of Our Profound Thanks ... All EmbracingGoodness ... All-Embracing Holy Light ... Remover of Affliction ... BeyondAffliction ... Immortal ... Fulfiller of HolyDesires ... Creator of Holy Attributes ... CompassionateJudge ... Mercifui Giver ... Bountiful Giver ... Unconquerable ... Freest of the Free ... Deliverer from Evil ... Never Deceiving ... Never Deceived ... One Without a Second ... Lord of Desire ... Decreer of Sovereign Desire ... Soul Supreme ... Never forgetting ... Just Accountant ... KnowingAIl things

54. 55. 56. 57. 58. 59. 60. 61. 62. 63. 64. 65. 66. 67. 68. 69. 70. 71. 79. 73. 74. 75. 76.

77. 78. 79. 80. 81. 82. 83. 84. 85. 86. 87. 88. 89. 90. 91. 92. 93. 94. 95. 96. 97. 98. 99. 100. 101.

A-tars A-bish A-frajdum Ham-chun Mi no-satihgar A-minogar

... ... ... ... ... ...

Fearless Devoid of pain Most Exalted One Ever The Same Invisible Creator of the Universe Creator of the Profoundly Spiritual Mino-nahab ... Hidden Without The Spirit Adar-bad-gar ... TransmuteI' of Fire Into Air Adar-nam-gar ... TransmuteI' of Fire Into Dew Bad-adar-gar ... TransmuteI' of Air Into Fire Bad-nam-gar ... TransmuteI' of Air Into Dew Bad-gail-gar ... TransmuteI' of Air Into Earth Bad-gerd-tum ... Supreme TransmuteI' of Air Into Dust Adar-kibrita... SupremeTransmuterof FirelntoDivine tum Sparks Bad-garjae ... Spreading Air Everywhere Ab-tum ... Creator of Life giving Water Gail-adar-gar ... TransmuteI' of Dust Into Fire Gail-vad-gar ... TransmuteI' of Dust Into Air Gail-nam-gar ... TransmuterofDust Into Water Gar-gar ... Master Craftsman Garo-gar ... Rewarder of Sincere Desires Gar-a-gar ... Creator of All Human ity and Its Actions Gar-a-gar-gar ... Creator of All Human and Animal Life A-gar-agar ... Creator of All the Four Elements A-gar-a-gar-gar ... Creator of All the Planets and AI I Other Worlds A-guman ... Neverln Doubt Ajaman ... Ageless A-Khuan ... Eternally Awake A mast ... Ever-Alert \ Fashutana ... Ever-Protecting Padmani ... Recorder of Man's Actions Firozgar ... Victorious Khudawand ... Lord of The Universe Ahuramazd ... Lord of Life and Wisdom Abarin-kuhan- ... Preserver of Creation tawan Abarib-nao... Renewer of Creation tawan Vaspan ... Embracing All Creation Vaspar ... GiverofAHThings Khawar ... Infinitely Patient 2 I Ahu ... Lord of Existence Avakhshidar ... Forgiver of Sins Dadar ... Divine Creator Raiyomand ... Rayed in Glory Khorehmand ... Haloed in Light Davar ... Lord of Justice f Kerfaigar ... Lord of Just Rewards Bokhtar ... Liberator Farsho-gar ... Awakener of Eternal Spring


Cont. from page 29

Meherabad, as near as possible to the East Room of Meher Retreat where many of the precious artifacts themselves have been housed for half a century. A large structure encompassing 15,000 square feet of floor space, the Conservation Building will not be a museum or library-those will come later-but a facility for storage of precious items and documents in museumquality cupboards, for scanning, and for specialized treatment if needed. Since power supply in India is erratic and the future prospects are always uncertain, reliance on high technology has been avoided. Temperature and humidity, therefore will be regulated not by air conditioners but by the building design itself, which will work on the same principle as a thermos bottle: that is, a sealed air space will serve as a buffer between an outer and an inner wall. The ground for the building will be broken this year. By present plans the finished structure will be ready for use in 1999.

Present Needs and Future Prospects As this construction work gets under way, the Committee will be tuming its attention in the coming months to new issues. The furnishings and supplies required for the new building will be expensive and, in some cases, hard to get. A single museum-quality cupboard with shelving, for example, if purchased in the United States, may cost between $3000 and $7000 (i.e. between Rs.1 ,00,000 and Rs.2,50,OOO). Some of the equipment, such as the computers and scanners, can possibly be bought in India; but the acid-free folders and boxes-which must be procured in large numbers-are available only in the West. This makes unavoidable the confrontation with problems and expense of shipping, duties, import licenses, and other complications. Baba's worldwide family has the opportunity to participate in this effort in a significant way, through donations. Donations are in a real sense the bricks and mortar that will shelter this precious legacy for the future. The building alone will cost an estimated $240,000-- i.e. about Rs.85,00,000-and there will be other comparable expenses. Knowing that many Baba lovers would want the

privilege of sharing in these costs, for your interest and information the Committee will send further updates as the work unfolds. Meanwhile, those who wish to contribute now may send donations to the Trust for "Corpus," earmarked "for archival and museum building and facilities." These gifts will be lovingly received and set aside for this project. All this current focus on matters of conservation and preservation is only preparatory to the greater objective of this project, which is the sharing of these precious treasures with the family of lovers of Avatar Meher Baba and, indeed, the world at large in the future. Meherabad itself will one day embrace museum, library and research centres that will draw upon and make broadly available the fruits of this present conservation effort. Meher Baba's own personal articles and other irreplaceable objects, of course, will always require special care and supervision. Duplicable records such as letters and diaries, however, once the preservation of originals has been seen to, can be shared and disseminated more freely. Baba is for all; and these things used by Him or registering His touch are gifts of His for all humanity. Of course, the members of the Archives and Museum Committee know only too well that no garment, document, or facility can ever replace that beautiful, divine Person whose passage through this world has left a longing nothing but Him can ever fully assuage. Religions have their books and their relics, to be sure: but we have nothing to do with this. Our work is to safeguard those tangible links which remind us of His human form and can reawaken in the heart the experience of His living presence. It is the sense of this living presence that will sustain His humanity through the coming ages of His manifestation and beyond, until His next glorious Advent when He descends to earth and walks amongst us as the Perfect Man once again.

fildwr-L4.

~ tU~'

Meheru Irani, Shau Kalchuri,.and the members of the Avatar Meher Saba Trust Archives and Museum Committee Avatar Meher Baba P.P.C. Trust, Post Bag No. 31, King's Road, Ahmednagar 414001, M.S. India May 1996


I Heard God Laughing,

from page 19

Persian New Year.

Renderings of Hafiz

A Divine Invitation You have been invited to meet The Friend. No One Can resist a Divine Invitation. That narrows down all our choices To just two: We can come to God Dressed for Dancing, Or Be carried on a stretcher To God's Ward.

and movement. The plates of green sprouts represent creativity and productivity, and so do the colorfully painted eggs. As you see, the whole table is beautifully laid. It symbolizes the Message and the Messenger, light, reflection, warmth, life, love, joy, production, prosperity, and nature. It is, in fact, a very elaborate thanksgiving table for all the good and beautiful things bestowed by God. Family members, all dressed in their best, sit around the table and eagerly await the announcement of the exact time

Manic Screaming We should make all spiritual talk Simple today: God is trying to sell you something, But you don't want to buy. That is what your suffering is: Your fantastic haggling, Your manic screaming over the price!

For A While We have all come to the right place. We all sit in God's classroom. Now, The only thing for us to do, my dear Is to stop Throwing spitballs for a while.

When Bubu uisiUd Melzer Houst, Navasari, India, in 1923. ht pointed a pouruil of Zoroaster on tht waU which IuuJ betn painted by a youn9 Pars; boy of [if!an. Daba said. "This is an (lacl piCIUrt of rhe. Prophet Zoroasru." The boy died just afrtr finlshln9 dlls plCrure, saying lht angels had comt for him.

(0

The Only Sin I Know If someone sits with me, And we talk about the Beloved, If I cannot give his heart comfort, If I cannot make him feel better About himself and this world, Then Hafiz, Quickly run to the mosque and prayFor you have just committed The only sin I know.

Now that you've sampled this delectable poetry you must immediately purchase it! Our Center's bookstore has an ample supply - and yes, we do ship worldwide! Paperback $14. 161 pages

of vernal equinox over radio or television. The head of the family recites the Nowruz prayers, and after the time is announced, each member kisses the other and wishes a Happy Nowruz. Elders give gifts to younger members. Next the rounds of visits to neighbors, relatives, and friends begin. Each visit is reciprocated. Singing and dancing is, more or less for the first two weeks, a daily routine. The festivity continues for 12 days, and on the 13th morning, the mass picnic to countryside begins. It is called SIZDEHBE-DAR, meaning thirteen-in-the-outdoors. Cities and villages tum into ghost towns with almost all the inhabitants gone to enjoy the day in woods and mountains along stream and riversides. People sing, dance, and make merry. Girls of marriageable age tie wild grass tops into knots and make a wish that the following Nowruz may find them married and carrying their bonny babies! PRECISE TIME OF NOWRUZ March 20th.


Baba and Mehera in Heaven by Wodin, 15" X19" colored photo reproduction. 46

AVATAR MEHER BABA CENTER OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA 10808 Santa Monica Boulevard Los Angeles, California 90025

Non-Profit Org. U.S. Postage

PAID Redondo Beach, CA Permit No. 196

o

o

ADDRESS CORRECTION REQUESTED

DATED MATERIAL, PLEASE EXPEDITE

TIllS NEWSLETTER IS FREE TO ANY WHO REQUEST IT. SINCE IT IS SUPPORTED BY 1HE COMMUNITY IT SERVES. 1HE LAI\.1Pposrs CONTINUED PUBLICAnON RELIES ON YOUR CONTRIBUTIONS.


October - December, 1996

,CoveStreetLampposu

Mani Sheriar Irani December 15, 1918 - August 19, 1996


.A. publication of the A.vatar lVleher Baba Cen ter of SOUthC1"11 Cal~f'ornia

,CoveStreet,CamfPosv features:

\velcome The Love Street LampPost is dedicated with love to Avatar Meher Baba. Its primary

Mani S. Irani

purpose is to contribute to a sense of com-

Notice From India

men and women mandali ......... 12

munity among all His lovers by providing a

Mani's Reunion

place for sharing His remembrance. All the

Special Memories of Mani

members of the Baba family are invited to

Some Thoughts From a Pilgrim

contribute to this feast of Love.

Experiences the Soul Must Go Through

Your stories, photos, art work, poetry, letters, articles, and humor are all actively solicited. We seek expressions of Baba's message of Love & Truth.

Meherabad, India More From Pilgrims Interment Program

Please submit your text on computer disks if possible (in any software format); typewritten copy on white paper is also acceptable. Be sure to clearly identify all suhmissions and credit every quote or reference.

subnlissiollS: Dina Snow Avatar Meher Baba Center of Southern California 10808 Santa Monica Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90025 -orBABABOOKS @ AOL.COM

I Want to Be With You Always

for the January - March April - June July - September October - December

issue: issue: issue: issue:

November 15th February 15th May 15th August 15th

subscriptions & changes of address: Clea Sueoff 3122 Arizona Avenue, No. C Santa Monica, CA 90404 310 828-1182

Love Street Bookstore: Dina Snow (at the addresses above) 310 837-6419 between 7:00 & 11:00pm 310 839-BABA (2222) 24 hour fax BABABOOKS @ AOL.COM

donations:

Meheru

18

Jeff Maguire

21

Mani Irani ......... 22 Billy Goodrum

23

contributors

24-34

Meherabad ......... 34 Mani Irani.. ....... 36

ne,,\rs froin around the \vorld: Baba's Birthday in Oslo Silence Day at Meherabad L.A. Silence Day Sahavas Youth Sahavas 38th Anniversary at Avatar's Abode

deadlines:

Heather Nadel ......... 13

Eric Solibakke

5

Marjorie Sucoff

6

Harry Thomas

7

Victor Anderson

9

Ray Kerkhove

11

departments: Editors' Page

2

Letter to the LampPost

2

Announcements

3

Welcome to the Love Street Bookstore

38

Center Report

41

AMBC of SC CalendarAnnouncements

43

.

reVIe\VS: The Subject Tonight Is Love

John Page

Love Street LampPost Avatar Meher Baba Center (address above)

credits: editors: editor: dcsi~n & layout: distrihution: cop~'

Dina Snow & David McNeely Diana Goodheart David McNeely Clea Sueoff & Harry Thomas

The £oV45tred£,a.tntfPosf.; is published quarterly, in January, April, July, anJ October. All contents © 1996 Avatar Meher Saba Center of Southern California. All quotations of Avatar Meher Saba, or books, or of Mani © AMSPT, India

42


Editors' Page From Dina Snow: elcome to this issue of the Love Street LampPost, devoted to God's beloved little sister, best friend to all who knew her, Mani S. Irani. Thanks mostly to the power of the Internet, we were able to put out worldwide our intention to dedicate this issue to her. 'Ve asked you to send in your stories, your memories, and your photos, (and your money!), and you responded magnificently. The results you see before you. The beauty of this issue comes from Mani and the inspiration she gives to us all. The technical beauty comes from the new co-editor, David McNeely. The design and layout are all his, and his input has been invaluable in assemhling this sweetest of October issues. From the bottom of my heart, David, welcome aboard!

W

To lessen any confusion that may arise, David insists that I should inform you of my decision to drop the Franklin in my name and return to my maiden name of Snow. (Not to be confused with my well-known mother, Diana Snow.)

Letter to the LampPost

l

In response to the feature on Prayers in our last issue, we received the following: 'Ve hear wonderful stories about the Prayers these days, like the one of the priest in a dirt-poor parish in Kingstown, Jamaica whose parishioners recite the Master's Prayer in Mass everyday! Or of the people in a drug and alcohol abuse program in Chicago who, writes a Baba lover who works with them, are very drawn to His Pntyer of Repentance and have asked for copies. Another letter from an elderly lady in England tells of her sending both prayers (The Master's Prayer and the Prayer of Repentance) to a vicar whose Christmas Eve sermon she had enjoyed on the radio. The vicar wrote her he was so impressed by these Prayers that, besides sharing them with his congregation, he had sent them on to his Bishop, who was also was very moved by them.

mention.

I

I

Another McNeely nugget was the new name for our bookstore. It had always been casually called the Baba Bookstore, but Mani has told us that for official names, especially in print, we should always write Avatar Meher Baba, not just the personal "Baba." Since we will soon be on the 'VorId 'Vide 'Veb, we felt a more eyecatching title for the general publicand one that has special meaning fQr us-would be The Love Street Bookstore. Our publishing arm will likewise be called The Love Street Press.

room for many of the expressions of love that we have received, we have moved several items forward to the January '97 issue.

Vve had many ideas on how to improve your magazine, and this issue had just about been put together when we received word of Mani's passing. In order to make

Baba and Mani have worked their magic on many people. There are so many people to thank for making this issue possible, but there are a few to whom I would like to give special

Guess it's the season for prayers! From Mani, by hand of Heather Nadel

'Vhen I asked Seda, a printer, how much she would charge to do the color pages, the price she quoted was half what another printer would have done. '\Then I told her she would lose money on the job, she said firmly, "If what you tell me is true [about Baha], then I will not lose!" Can't argue with that. Soledad and Teresa, the girls who work Seda's computers, scanners, color separators etc., both worked many long hours, completely free of charge. To these three ladies, we say a very big Thank You! To Vesta Clinton of Santa Barbara, who told us "Yes we could!" do a color issue, "'Ve will get donations"and then proceeded to raise almost $1000 from many hours on the phone, we say a big Thank You! To all of you who have contributed, Jai Baba to your love for the Godman and his dearest little sister.

From David McNeely: "\1 That a blessing it has been to be VV able to offer my efforts in the service of honouring Mani. I have only thanks to give, and I know I speak for Dina here as well: To Heather Nadel and Meheru: we are a family because you make us feel like one, sharing the big news and the little details which are so important to us, and most especially for revealing to us the depth of your love for Mani. To all of you who have been so generous in your sharing. The pages herein are a hot bonfire of love for Mani and Meher Baba, and it is


Announcements because you have contributed kindling and firewood from the hearths of your truest homes. Let the reader come in, shed overcoat and sweater, and be exposed to a glow which penetrates the soul! To all who have contributed photographs. Look at these closely. I have discovered in working with them, in magnifying them, nudging them one pica at a time ... they afford a very direct link to Love. A special thanks to John Page, who provided with gracious enthusiasm many of the color photos. To Vesta Clinton, and all of you who have contributed the dollars which made it possible to have color pages in special honor of Mani. The excitement with which you shared your vision inspired us to lift our own sights of what this issue might be.

Pilgrim Office Announces New E-mail Address Ahmednagar, India Last year we initiated the use of email for requesting Pilgrim Centre reservations. This service has been very successful and we invite Baba pilgrims to use this quick mode of communication with us. Sprintmail (our e-mail service) recently announced a change of format; please use the follOWing address to contact us (type without breaks or return):

pimco.office@ambppct. sprintrpg .ems.vsnl. net. in When e-mailing us, please remember the following:

To Diana Goodheart, for reading everything carefully, word by wordfor embracing the labor of it; also for your council in defining the role of editor in a Baba community.

1. We incur long-distance phone charges as well as service fees for both incoming and outgoing messages. We will ask you to reimburse the Pilgrim Reservation Office for these costs.

To Dina Snow, for welcoming me as a comrade in marching with Baba banner held high! Also for your incredible energy, which initiated the momentum for this grand endeavor. You have done this so well for so long-I had no clue how many hours you devote to it.

2. This service is for Pilgrim Reservations business. Please do not use it for personal messages to Baba lovers here. And please don't expect to use it for personal business when you come to India; we just don't have the time or facilities to provide this service.

Gratitude most of all to Beloved Baba, for allowing me to act in this role. Being mailbox and scribe for all that has been offered for this issue has felt like sitting on the threshold of Your samadhi, and being greeted by each pilgrim after they have just taken Your darshan. It has been no less than a Sahavas with You, my Beloved.

3. Because of occasional delays within the sprintmail system, messages sometimes take a few days both coming and going. Also, due to time constraints or power/ phone outages, we may not be able to immediately answer your e-mail, but will do so just as soon as possible. So, do not expect to receive a reply as quickly as you are used to in your other e-mail communications.

4. Please include your snail-mail address as part of the initial communication, so we may update our records, as well as communicate that way if necessary. Also, please put the date of sending in the text portion of the message. Thank you. Jai Baba! In His Love and Service, Pat, Irene, and Meredith at PIMCO

About the cover Thi~ photo was taken in August of 1990 by Georgeann Erskine~ of Malibu California. When she returned home and saw how beautifully the photo had turned out, she sent it to Heather Nadel. Heather immediately wrote back, saying Mani took one look at the photo,>commandeered it, and asked for ten more for her family! Mani later wrote to Georgeann, saying, "This photo is a 'rare species', as your camera has caught me 'on the Wing' as it were ... "

We ,have learned since printing the cover that Mani herself would use two forms of her name: Manija Sheriar Irani, or Mani S. Irani. She would not have referred to herself as Mani Sheriar Irani. This experience reminds us of Mani's comment to one of the editors that every Baba book contains some flaw, however small, but the purpose of that work still prevails. We believe Mani would feel that what prevails in this issue is our love for her.


Bombay name changed Where will your plane land if the ticket says Bombay? We have been advised that if you address an envelope to a friend in Bombay they will never get it. You must, instead, write Mumbai.

Holiday Inn arrives in Pune David Fenster of Meherabad tells us that Holiday Inn now has a brand new five-star hotel in Pune. Their brochure features beautiful rooms and grounds and says on the cover "Now in Pune: International Hospitality that is truly State-of-the-Heart!" Inside, it continues "Wonderful climate, sprawling greens, great people, seat of the arts, exciting business opportunities, yet a touch of Old World charm. There is no dearth of reasons why you should be in Pune." They only missed one thing: birthplace of the Avatar!

Warrior, can be seen through October at Tommy Tangs restaurant, 7313 Melrose Ave. This exhibit is well worth the visit, featuring some 30-odd pieces illustrating Debra's wonderful creative artistry. Treat yourself to an outing. Feed your eyes and your stomach too.

Charlie Morton Weds! Beyond imagination and conception? That's what some thought when

The address is 441/1 Somwar Peth Pune 411011 Phone 011 91212-7846

Art Debra Ashe's art exhibit, Love

Meherana Update Meherana has been granted its zoning permit and is now working toward a conditional use permit. If you are going to Yosemite or Mariposa, you might attend a dhuni (on the 12 th of every month) or a Saturday night meeting. All are welcome.

Live on top of the world! Walk where Meher Baba has walked, high above beautiful Ojai. If you like to make people feel welcome and you also possess handy-person or gardening skills, the position of caretaker for Meher Mount, a universal center dedicated to Meher Baba, may be for you! Couples are also invited to apply. If interested, please send a letter with a description of your background to Gigi Driessen, 6230 Poppy Peak Dr., Los Angeles, CA 90042.

A Favorite Alternative For those of you who are happy with less luxury and much less damage to your wallet, you will be very warmly received by the extremely gracious and loving Ramakrishnan-the soft-spoken person whom Baba asked to start and run the Avatar Meher Baba Center in Pune. You will be awakened each morning by the sounds of arti being sung in the Main Hall, immediately adjacent to the sleeping quarters. Accommodation is spartan, but fresh clean linen and hot showers are available. The cost is a donation to the Center, whatever your heart moves you to give.

on their summer marriages-Mehera on May 3pt in Claremont, California, and Rabia on June 16th on Long Island, New York.

God Speaks in Farsi Charlie and Ana Maria

they heard that Charlie Morton had married Ana Maria Donahue on August 7, 1996 in a private ceremony, but some of us figured it was inevitable after watching Anna ride in Charlie's VW bus without embarrassment and tirelessly assist Charlie in Video-taping the Sahavas. It was only a matter of time and we couldn't be happier for them. Congratulations!

Welcome to the married life Congratulations to the two daughters of John Page and Judy Stephens

The collection of donations for the publishing of God Speaks in the Farsi language continues apace. We are almost at the projected cost of $8000. It is such an expensive venture because of all the color enclosures the original book has. We want the quality of this book to be every bit as good as the original published by Sufism Reoriented. Los Angeles has the largest population of FarsilIranian people in the country, and our Farsi language meetings are very well attended. Many of these people can't speak English, and the need for Baba literature in their native tongue is quite urgent. All donations can be sent to the Center, earmarked for the God Speaks Farsi Project.


News from Around the World Note: thefollowing article was intendedfor the last issue. We apologize to Eric for the delay in publishing this lovely birthday story! -ed.

Eric Solibakke Oslo, Norway

Meher Baba's Birthday Celebration in Oslo

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he children arrived early. Their eyes stretched to take in the huge spread of birthday goodies laid out on the dining room table expanded to include all its leaves. Everything from sprouted chick peas to potato chips and plenty of cakes and sweets could be seen there. The rules were no rules, so they got right to work on the celebration. The PAL format version of Eternal Beloved had become available in England just in time to reach us for the Beloved's birthday gathering, and for 40 minutes the twelve adults sat immobilized on chairs in higgledypiggledy rows in front of the TV monitor while Baba baby-sat the children all over the house. We were aware of a few mysterious thumps and bumps, and every now and then one or another child checked in to see if we were okay. At those moments, we'd hear a giggly "There's Baba... " from Julian-Sheriar (2 years 3 months) as he pointed with delight at the screen. After the video we basked in the atmosphere the Beloved had created for us. Nobody wanted to puncture that beautiful balloon of bliss surrounding us. I said a few words in appreciation of the video, and Hilary

Michiels took up the thread with lively praise. She is the only one here who has actually embraced the Beloved in His physical form, and she has a special aura and place among us because of that. Of the many videos we have shown here, this is the first to catch the Beloved's spirit as she knows it. Speaking with great conviction and love, she spoke of the supreme importance of God Speaks and treated us to a vigorous elucidation of several points which she considers essential to an appreciation of Meher Baba's advent as the Avatar. Ose Melsom then pulled from her pocket a newly-arrived letter from Bal Natu, which I read aloud. He encouraged us to accept the Beloved's will in the matter of publishing the Norwegian translation of his Conversations. Four publishers have turned it down so far and we begin to wonder if He wants it to come out at this time. Bal Natu repeated again one of the Beloved's sweetest lines: "Do your best and leave to Me the rest!" A few minutes later the core of this group gravitated upstairs to the Baba room where we gathered quietly to view the great treasure sent by Mani last year, a sadra worn by the Beloved. The atmosphere became rarefied and purified as I unwrapped it. All fell into deep stillness and time ended for a period as the room filled with an aroma which eventually everybody noticed. Having just seen the video where Mani and Dr. Goher describe how they would bury their faces in the Beloved's sadra, the desire to do exactly that was strongly present. And in fact one person did do it! Then the necessities of lifesleepy children to put to bed and

long, icy roads to travel-began to whittle away the group. Only Hilary and Johannes Solberg remained. Johannes' parents had been disciples of Hazrat Inayat Khan before Baba reoriented the Sufis in the u.S. When he and his twin brother were born several weeks premature on Hazrat Inayat Khan's birthday, they were blessed and given names by the Sufi leader: Jemal and Jelal. Johannes has indeed lived a blessed and charmed life. He is like the East-full of stories. We rounded out this evening in honor of the Beloved's birth with a lively exchange of stories between these two veterans until at last we arrived at a fullness of silence, and they departed warmheartedly into the Beloved's larger presence.

News from Europe Don Stevens reports on several translation projects. God Speaks, for example, nears completion in French. The book has already been beautifully rendered into Spanish by a professional translator for one of Argentina's best publishers, and it is in its second edition in Serbo-Croat. The Discourses have been translated into Italian, leaving only details of its publication to be worked through. The Everything and the Nothing has been translated into Czech, and numerous other projects, completed or in process, occupy hearts and hands as Baba's message of Love and Truth comes to the world.

r


Silence Day at Meherabad by Marjorie Sucoff Roseville, Minnesota

I

would have thought that keeping Baba's Silence on Silence Day in Meherabad was a breeze. After all, everyone around was silent. And to be where Baba is so present, rather than at home in Minnesota, I would have thought it easier to obey Him. Well, I was in for a surprise.

were there, so many many roses, so lovingly placed for Baba. Their scent wafted in all directions, carrying my thoughts to the Beloved's beloved, Mehera, and to their Perfect Union. My thoughts of Mani were particularly poignant; while reading the quote of Hafiz in the tin shed and then bowing down, I was struck with

Mani coming to life. But on Silence Day the Hum emanating from their faces overwhelmed me. I blurted out, "Oh! It's coming along so wonderfully!" Diana looked up, her eyes Wide, index finger at her lips. I had broken the Silence! Then, just as the self-flagellation began for having failed to obey Baba, there was The day before July 10, the train suddenly the stopped at ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Hum againthe Samathe Hum of dhi crossing Baba-in the and people room, in the tossed out portrait, in suitcases Diana and, and jumped Yl6~ut?wriatyouhearfrom the fMaste1jneVer~say itis-,Jj;.oljg,i[,e~aus.e~:!my. amazingly, in to the me. dear,.tftefauft lies in your own incapacityto1:lnierstan:d~m. railroad bed. Others The day I am tlie sfa-ve· of the :Master wliiJliasrefeqsed me fromignoranc~.Wliat­ came by drew to a bus and close with ever:my'Jvfasterdoesis of tlie li:ighestEeneJit to d£fconcemed. private car. films in -Hafiz There were Hostel D at 600 to 800 9:00p.M. L;;;;;;;;;;';;;;';;;';;';;;';;';;;;:;;;;;';;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;~;;;;';;;;==;;;;;;;;;=;;;;;;;=;;;;;;;;;==iiiiiiiiiiiI==iiiiiiiiiiiI===;;;;';;;;===~==~~ Hundreds of pilgrims arriving, and the hubbub was exciting. us, keeping silence, sat on metal a sense of her suffering on this chairs in a steamy auditorium. Silence Day. At evening arti Baba gifted us with Occasionally a child would shout in a an incredible sky. Above a dark cloud What image can best describe that sing-song way, "Meher Baba, Meher rose a plume of colors resembling day for me? Baba's Hum. In the Baba, Meher Baba." And during the Baba's flag. Then His face appeared in beginning the Hum was Within, as if films the Indians would clap whenthe cloud, and this was followed by a between Baba and me alone. Then it ever Baba appeared. The last film was descending thread of gold as if an was within and without simultaPete Townshend's 0 Parvardigar, electric current was suspended above neously, everywhere, in everything, shown without sound. Samadhi, the real Generator of the in everyone, engulfing, permeating. world. When the program ended we The Hum was in the scrabble game became a mass of shuffling feet, that afternoon when Clea, Sandra On Silence Day there were no artis moving slowly, steadily, through the and I played in silence. It was in the to be said, but the Tomb was open to exit door. No one spoke of our caroms game with Murthy. The Hum all, as were the Rahuri Cabin and the carrying Baba within our hearts. But was in the women's dormitory, where Jopdhi. Pilgrims moved quietly about, when the flashlights cut the darkness over the days Diana LePage was and often there would be a glance, a I felt the Hum all around. The Baba painting a portrait of Baba and Mani, nod, a smile, or a bringing together of Brother and sister side by side. HU~. ~iS~_~a~:f ~Vi::~~o~:~'r hands in a silent Jai Baba. Throughout the day they stood in a queue at Baba's tomb. Large baskets of roses

Each day I watched Baba and


Keep Me With You (theme afthe L.A. Sahavas)

by Harry Thomas Los Angeles, California

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he 22nd Los Angeles Sahavas was a work of art. Held once again at Pilgrim Pines, a camp ground in the San Bernardino Mountains, it featured Hoshang and Havovi Dadachanji, Irwin and Janet Luck, and Debbie ordeen. It was a perfect combination of intimate stories, meaningful insights, divine entertainment, and interactive fun. Our guests shared deeply fronl their experience with Meher Baba. Hoshang began by crediting his father's brother, Chanji (Baba's secretary) as the one responsible for bringing the Dadachanji family to Baba. Hoshang met Baba for the first time in 1942 during the engagement of Arnavaz and his brother, Nariman, and again in 1944 in Meherabad at their wedding, but at that time he had no concept of who Meher Baba was. Back at home, Hoshang was still aligned to the Zoroastrian community and was ashamed to profess an affiliation with Meher Baba. Baba visited Bombay often, staying in Arnavaz and ariman's home, and during these times Hoshang had the opportunity of being in Baba's company and of driving Baba around Bombay to visit masts. Hoshang was impressed by the amount of love Baba showered on everyone and by the devotional love reciprocated by His mandali. He attended "the three incredible weeks" in 1954 and recalls Baba's practicality and endearing human qualities, His

and being embraced by Him, she wasn't the least bit impressed. Baba had given the perfection sign at their meeting, and Havovi thought, "I don't think he's all this" [referring to the sign]. Of the early days, she says, "I really went to all these Baba gatherings to protect Hoshang." She was cautious in those days and didn't want her husband falling under the spell of Meher Baba. Eventually her heart thawed and embraced her Beloved. In fact, during one of the Guruprasad Darshans in the late '50s, Baba said, "Freny [Havovi's sister-in-law] and Havovi didn't love me-but now they love me this much" [He opened His arms wide]. On one occasion, Baba, knowing that Havovi and Freny were Havovi and Hoshang Dadachanji anemic, told them to come Pilgrim Pines, July of 1996 near Him and to pull down the . ._._ _.. _.. ._.__._.__._.. . _.._. . . . lids beneath their eyes. Baba stared into their eyes and in mingling with people and His sense of tum pronounced them anemic. "Oh, humor. Of all the discourses they but how deeply I was able to look into received from the Godman, Hoshang Baba's eyes," Havovi said. remembers two messages which were constantly repeated by Baba: "ReIrwin, while living in Miami with member that I am God in human his father, who was quite the antagoform" and "Always hold onto My nist in Irwin's search, saw The Ten damaan." Commandments and was inspired to know what God wanted him to do. He Havovi, who was raised as a was inwardly drawn to read the works Zoroastrian and carries the name of of the great religions until he received the prophet's wife, entered the Baba a copy of Listen, Humanity sent to fold as a skeptic. After meeting Baba him by his brother, Edward, which


created a longing in him to meet Meher Baba personally. Irwin met Baba in Guruprasad in May of 1960. When he drew into Baba's presence, he was embraced and kissed on both cheeks. Baba asked him, "How did you come?" "By Your will," was the reply. Later Baba informed him , "You were sent to me by another master." At one point in their meeting Baba asked, "If I gave you Knowledge, what would you do?" Irwin's sincere response was, "If you give me Knowledge, I'll know what to do." On a later visit, this time with his brother

Historical Footnote: Havovi ,and t:foshang's, son Raiyomand, at agetenwiUfa small camera;. took the lastphotographof Baba (at Dara and~mrit'sweddiQg).,

Edward, Baba said to them as they exited His company, "One day I will give you the Highest Experience." Baba repeated this, and Irwin thought, "Today's a good time too." Irwin's first visit with Baba was to last for one hour. However, grace descended and he enjoyed the repeated company of the Godman and was able to accompany Baba and His entourage to many places in Poona, staying with Him for two weeks. The Sahavas entertainment was glorious! Both Janet and Debbie were marvelous. Their performances and selection of material was different yet equally spirited and involving ~f the audience (especially Havovi, who joined each one for a song). Janet showcased songs she had written over the years. She also included a poem, written by Mani in Satara in 1956 which she had set to music [see box]. She serenaded us with Meherazad Gardens and The Grand Fisherman which was featured in Irwin's film ' Meher Baba, The Human Side of God. Janet's voice was vibrant yet sweet, and she thanked Baba, as did all who were there, for providing the strength for her to make the trip to the

Sahavas and to perform. Debbie, in the full spirit of a '30s or '40s torch singer, in a crushed black velvet dress and glittering jewelry, sang love songs from that era in her concert. The music-songs to a worldly lover-easily embraced the Avatar and were sung, in fact, as love songs to Him. Backed by a competent band, Debbie treated the audience to Begin the Beguine, The Very Thought of You, Unforgettable, and other favorite compositions. Her concert was entitled A Stroll Down Lovers' Lane, and the music put all listeners hand in hand with Meher Baba. Joy reigned supreme. Many of the expected features of the L.A. Sahavas were here this year too. For example, Bobby Manonash led a game of Higher Trivial Pursuit where contestants (the Sahavas guests) slowly made their way up the evolutionary and involutionary continuum towards God Realization at game's end. The teenagers and other young ones found companionship in one another. People made new friends and reestablished old relations. The toddy shop was as refreshing and happening as ever, and a bear wandered down the dry creek to visit the camp. The food was great, the bookstore-graciously stocked with materials-was well-frequented and appreciated, and the workshops were informative and interactive. Irwin's film, Meher Baba, The Human Side of God, was shown in its entirety, and the dhuni on the last night closed the gathering in a hallowed embrace. And Baba's presence, most would agree, was strongly in evidence. As always, a special thanks to the Sahavas committee and all the other workers who made this event possible. Most of all, a hearty thanks to Meher Baba for being the perfect Host and for sharing His company, allowing us the opportunity to drink in His love. After all, that's what a Sahavas is most essentially about.

Jai Baba.

~'Asa beginning; I thought that I w()].ll~

stattoffh\s!ngipgiapoem that

~ani had written in 19561n Satara. I

'lmd found <thisihthe!ii.wakener '~ctually,~lo~gtimeago,and wrote it l!flown.;;Aud I jus~fou~ditagain,and. I sang j~Jor;~~~:~henJi,wa~~~erein > rune. ThiSisjus~"ab9~6aweekago. ';And'she said,;~Afe you singing ,that at ,;the;Sahavas?',$ogIsaid,'¥es lam. YNoiw.Jam.' "

:~a}ja,YotlFoundMe :~en I waS a rose . pining "in my static pose?

¥oucame 10 me shining a:dewdrop on IllY lips I held· you close, ,to me. M'hen I was athrush pouring myyeaming from a bush, was in song adoring You in wondrous"praise all day long. Wh.en I was a grain of sand sleeping .in parched desert land, , weeping -fora breath of love You kissed me as caressing i?raindrops from above.' ,Iw~s

once a gur,gling brook stealing ... o'er.arid paths forsook; in all my ups and-rlowns feeling You in every stone and nook.

And now I am a human wondering whereto £indthe loved one wondering. ' But once againiWou found. me, dear beloved one.

Mani Irani Satara, 1956


The Youth Sahavas by Victor Andersen Walnut Creek, California

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he Youth Sahavas is a yearly gathering of Meher Baba's followers who happen to be unfortunate enough to be in high school. The Sahavas is held at the Myrtle Beach Center and is coordinated by three wonderful people-Buz Conner, Linda Hansen, and Lois (LoLo) Jones-they deserve much applause for pulling this off year after year along with many other helpers. The sixth annual Youth Sahavas began as attendees arrived from all over the world (we had people from England, Australia and Puerto Rico). After unloading their baggage, some people headed out to the playground for a rousing game of volleyball while others met in the Meeting Place to discuss volunteer work for the Sahavas. A few people glided out on Long Lake in the gondola and some, delighted at seeing old friends again, simply hung out and talked. We did an art project that night in which 10 sketches of Baba were cut up into 10 pieces each and distributed to 10 groups of 10 people each. Each person colored in one piece of Baba and then the pieces were put back together and hung up on the wall in the Meeting Place for the remainder of the Sahavas. On the first morning at seven sharp, Lela Stephens and Angie West discovered exactly how to make the whole camp hate them-they woke everybody up! Once the early morning groggies had been shaken off, the few of us who were actually coherent at 7:30 A.M. walked down to the Meeting Place for morning arti. Discussion groups began at 10:30. Discussion groups were held throughout the Sahavas and focused on topics ranging from the Discourses to gender issues to what Baba had to say

about drugs. Workshops were held every afternoon. There was a wide variety of workshops to choose from, including theater, music improvisation, digeridoos, creative writing, video/film-makinglediting, drum Circle, photography. Art tent activities included making tiles for the Peace Wall, sculpting clay, and painting murals. Evening arti was at six (similar to morning arti except that people were actually awake this time). We had dancing after dinner on several nights-even square dances. William Files deserves special thanks here, as he devoted much of his Sahavas time to organizing the dances and setting up and operating all the sound and lighting equipment. Thursday evening, we had two Baba films, followed by a slide show organized by Prem Makeig. It consisted of art that Sahavas attendees had submitted earlier in the year. On Friday the evening program was the Celebration (a.k.a. Talent Show) where people played piano, drums, guitar, digeridoo, and sang, danced, and rapped. The hosts for the evening were Mehera Blum and Erich Morton dressed up as Erich Morton and Mehera Blum respectively. The Celebration ended as usual with the Men's Play. The Men's Play-which is written, organized, and performed only by the men-is traditionally the last thing that happens on Celebration night. Saturday was the last full day of the Sahavas. The Barn Ceremonyuntil now the last major event on the last night of the Sahavas-was held in the evening. Each person lines up in the bam, takes a flower from a basket, and places it on Baba's chair,

and receives a gift from Mani. This year, Mani gave each Sahavas attendee a piece of bark from the umar tree in Meherazad which had borne the image of Baba's face. The Barn Ceremony is generally the part of the Sahavas where all the attendees feel closest to each other, and there is much crying and hugging going on. It is about this time when the reality of leaving the next day really begins to set in. This year we were delighted to hear that, thanks to a wonderful suggestion by Ben Hay, we would all be a part of the first EVER dhuni at Meher Center. It was an honor to be a part of such a wonderful event. After the Barn Ceremony, everybody made the one-third mile trek down to a patch of beach set behind some sand dunes, where we held the dhuni. On Sunday, the last day, we headed out to Baba's House-walking in silence and holding hands in a long chain of over 100 people-for the closing ceremony. At Baba's House, still holding hands, we all walked past a video camera, said a quick message to Mani, and then gathered around the camera to sing Mani's song. The video was then sent off to India as a get-well gift to her. Then we went inside Baba's House to absorb the love that was flOWing and to say goodbye to all the people we had grown to love so much during the Sahavas. It was kind of a shock knowing that we wouldn't see most of these people for another year, especially since we all had grown so close to each other during the Sahavas. But in reality we are always with each other, deep in our hearts, as is Baba.

.lai Baba!

9


Avataric Display: The 38th Anniversary of Avatar's Abode Ray Kerkhove Queensland, Australia

A

s our anniversary of Meher Baba's visit falls during the Queensland winter, we always hope for bright, fine weather. This allows us to have a true picnic in Baba's love, scattering over the lawns, enjoying meals and ball games in the sun. Happily, Baba allowed us unusually mild weather. As if on cue, several days of mud and drizzle cleared into sunshine just as the flagraising commenced. Perfect weather persisted until the precise moment Baba's flag was lowered (when Anniversary traditionally ends). The weather epitomised the Anniversary mood: mild, well-timed and on display. Chief amongst the "well-timed exhibits" were our special guests. Baba's nephews, Rustom and Sohrab Irani, returned (henceforth to be known as Baba's budgies after their marvellous skit with Peter Davies and Peter Rowan). They discussed their exceptional upbringing, played intoxicating bhajans, and coached us in Indian games. Leatrice Johnston flew in from New Mexico. She brought an air of gentle sweetness, touching hearts with tale after tale of Meher Baba's thoughtfulness. From Sydney, Jehangir Daver arrived to share fascinating segments of his translations of the diary of an early disciple, one of Baba's school friends, Baily. Much else was subtly "on display:" a new cassette (Silently Singing, by Lorraine Brown), a new t-shirt (a Robert Rouse design of Baba's face

Very active octogenarian Diana Snow (one of the builders of Avatar's Abode) charging up the hill to Saba's House.

among leaves), a new introductory book on Baba, and a glossy new booklet about Avatar's Abode. Moreover, there were walls and walls of Baba to be seen-paintings, sculpture, posters, pamphlets and ancient programme guides, all set up for pubic viewing. The centerpiece of all this showiness was the freshly built Reception Centre-the first addition to Avatar's Abode in about fifteen years. On Sunday it was formally dedicated to the Avatar. Sam Saunders piped a group of children down the Abode's grassy slope to the building. There they garlanded a bronze bust of Baba to cheers of Avatar Meher Baba ki Jai. Sym Simons and John Borthwick then detailed the building's purpose and related Mani's comments on the project. Mani sent scrapings from the walls of Baba's bedroom in Meherazad for the occasion. These were incorpo-

rated into a special alcove in the Reception Centre's back wall. But the show which most touched me was the growing sophistication of our local talent. Examples of this were almost too numerous to recount: a wonderful sing-along children's picnic organized by Janice Rice and Kaye Lindsay; subtle harmonies by the Wineshop Singers; a hilarious 1940s-style detective skit, The Search for God, by the Brisbane group; Arab dancing featuring Sky Ladner; and the ever-popular Rowan brothers, Eruch and Merwan, who performed Rap songs about following Baba. The healing balm of Baba's dazzling Presence-and a good dose of His playfulness and humour-was obviously being carried forward, once again. May it continue forever.


Behold today the gates of Paradise are open wide

victory unto Thee!


Notice from India Mani Sheriar Irani, dearest sister of Avatar Meher Baba, soared triumphantly into her Godbrother's open arms on 19 August, 1996 at 7:01 A.M. to be reunited with Him whom she adored with all her heart and served with joyous dedication. The time had come for her darling God-brother and Lord to free His beautiful nightingale sister to be with Him evermore. As Mani wrote to the Baba-family recently, the bird was singing sweetly, but the cage was in need of repair. Now the Eternal Beloved has released His little sister from the cage of illusion to fly freely in His eternal domain and presence. The Ancient One, whom Mani served faithfully and tirelessly till the end, called Mani His true sister in service. Whatever the duty Baba entrusted to her, whether it be as close companion to His beloved Mehera, scribe to the west, or Chairman of the Avatar Meher Baba Trust, Mani ceaselessly endeavored to please her Beloved Lord. Her exemplary life shall be a guiding star to all Baba's lovers. Mani not only leaves behind generations of Baba-Iovers whose hearts have been deeply touched by Baba's Love through personal contact with her, but an invaluable legacy to the generations to come of a life lived in His company, shared through stories, songs and wisdom, which will continue to light the way for all His lovers until He comes again. We shall miss our dearest Mani whose lively presence and loving company, sparkling vivacity, warmth, unique wit and humour shall ever remain alive in our memories. We, Mani's lifelong companions, join our worldwide Baba family in saluting her unparalleled life of supreme love and total dedication as sister to the Lord of the Universe, Beloved Avatar Meher Baba.

Avatar Meher Baba ki Jai!!!

Eruch, Goher, and all Meherazad men and women mandali.

"On December 15, 19l8, when Merwanwas 24 years old,a sister named Manija was bom.'Vhile his mother was in the Bassoon Hospital he would often visit, bringing her gifts. Merwan was the first to see Manija as soon as she was "born; he picked her up and kissed her even before the nurses could give her a bath. At this time, Merwan would sleep at different places, and when Shireen returned home with Manija, he would come to the house to see his baby sister. He would often sit rocking her cradle, singing to her. He said, 'She is so fortunate. She is mine'." Bhau Kalchuri

Lord Meher ,'vol. 1, page 262


Mani's Reunion As Beloved Baba s family around the world now knows, His darling sister Mani rejoined Him on 19th August 1996, in Meherazad after a prolonged illness. This account is to share with you some of the events of her final days of love and service to Him.

A few years ago, Mani related that 1""\.she had heard a voice, clear and distinct, saying within her: 路'1 am the bird, I am not the cage." Perhaps that is why, when her health first began to fail in March 1995, she often would remark, "The bird is singing away, but the cage is in need of repair!" Despite her ensuing struggle against "NPH" (Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus) that involved two surgeries (in November '95 and February '96) Mani remained a radiant singing "bird"-meeting Baba-Iovers in Meherazad whenever she could, scooting around Mehera's garden in her Begum (motorized scooter) as her walking became more and more difficult, and finally greeting people for a few moments from the confines of her chair inside the house in Meherazad. At the end of February 1996, having returned to Meherazad from her second surgery, she appeared on Mehera's porch just before Meherazad closed for the season. She was eager to spend time with her Baba family, and she loved the hour that followed as she "held forth" to a porch full of people as they performed for her, a wonderful giving and receiving of His love. Afterwards many remarked that it was like a darshan, and Mani was more joyous and radiant than they had ever seen her. That memorable day in February

Heather Nadel

turned out to be her last "love--feast" with pilgrims at Meherazad. When pilgrim season opened again in July 1996, Mani was in the hospital in Poona, having been diagnosed with an inoperable malignant tumor. How touching in retrospect was the vision of Mehera that Mani had just before leaving Meherazad to go to Poona for what we thought at the time would be a simple investigation! In the middle of the night, Mani sat up for a moment, and gazing over towards Mehera's bed, was amazed to see her darling Mehera lying there. "Oh!" she thought happily, "Mehera's come back to her old place!" and then she saw that Mehera was looking at her with an expression of great compassion and sadness. Mani was deeply touched, and soon afterwards in the hospital, when her diagnosis became known, she was heartened by this evidence of Mehera's loving presence and care. After three weeks in the hospital, how happy and grateful Mani was to return home to Meherazad in early July! There she was often joyful in spite of her growing pain, and more than anything else in her last weeks , except gazing at pictures and slides of her beloveds, Baba and Mehera, Mani would love to sing. The bird indeed was singing, despite the condition of the cage, and Mani often entertained us with wonderful renditions of all kinds of songs: Baba's artis, her own songs, Baba-songs by others, hymns,

traditional Indian songs, Mirabai songs, bhajans, village songs, lines from ghazals. She'd sing alone, or with Khorshed, Katie, Manu or Roda, or with a chorus of us, always very happily. One day, as Mani was being helped to the dining room, she said, "So this is what Baba wants me to do now." And she turned to this new, most difficult task, with the wholehearted concentration and discipline that always characterized her work for Him. She participated in her care with 100% focus, carefully taking the pills and alternative medicines prescribed for her with such great love and concern by Dr. Goher and Shelley, resting when she was tired (something it had always been hard to get her to do), and, in spite of the pain, almost never complaining. In fact, her sweetness and at times genuine cheerfulness often cheered up her caregivers! And we felt she was doing all this for Baba, not for herself. As always, she was striving to live as He wished, moment to moment, wholeheartedly accepting whatever He ordained. As the weeks went by, Mani seemed to become less and less attached to the world and more and more immersed in thoughts of Baba and Mehera. She would recall old days and reminisce with the women about their happy times with Baba. Or sometimes she'd tell jokes, complete of course with fantastic facial


expressions, perfect mimicry, and a myriad of funny voices that would leave everyone in stitches. On Silence Day, she gestured as eloquently as she used to speak-and of all of us, she was the one who managed to maintain total silence! At tea when we inquired through signs as to whether she had finished her nutritional drink, she scribbled on the chalkboard, "Fait accompli"! "Thank God for a sense of humour," she had remarked during her earlier illness, and her humour lightened many moments as she became weaker and weaker and more and more confined to bed. In the

"I do not know when or how I go But this I know to where 1 goIt is to a place of indescribable beauty, Where OO(1's Inve enfolds completely. " beginning she was able to sit up in her chair in the sitting room or on the porch for short periods, and enjoyed hearing get-well cards and heart-messages from Baba-Iovers, and especially attending to last-minute details about her new manuscript Dreaming of The Beloeved that she had dictated in May with such interest and meticulous attention. Something else she really enjoyed was hearing stories read aloud from her book God-Brother. She would become so childlike and excited reliving her childhood times with Baba, and amused and impressed with her own remarkable story-telling! Gradually, the sessions at the dining table and in her chair became shorter and more infrequent as she became too weak to sit for long. Eventually she could no longer walk to Baba's Room for her morning darshan which had meant so much. It was so hard to see her weak and in pain, but true to what she had

"You ha'Ve no idea how much He lO'Ves me. You ha'Ve no idea how much I lO'Ve Him. You hacve no idea hO'W happy I am. " written in her article "On the Topic of Suffering," Baba was upholding her from within as He dealt her blows of pain and weakness from without. This we knew from things she would say. Once we remarked to her how strongly we felt Baba's and Mehera's presence in her room, and Mani said that she felt as if Baba was there with her always, and even more so Mehera whom she often felt was moving around in their room "doing this and that." One day after hearing from Arnavaz of a beautiful Baba dream had by one of the men mandali, she said so happily, "Baba keeps sending me messages!" On one of the last days she was able to sit up, Mani sat for a little while on her bed, facing Mehera's bed. All the windows of her room were open and from outside the room, Baba's image tree seemed to lean in to lend her support and strength. As she sat there, our tapewalli played a tape of Mani's song written for Mehera, "To the Glory of Love," and Mani swayed back and forth in time to the music, singing along with closed eyes and a gentle smile, lost in the beauty of the song. Baba and Mehera seemed specially present then, in the atmosphere of the pink room and in the joy of her glowing face. It was to be our last such session. Despite an IV drip and all possible treatment, a few days later Mani slipped into a semi-conscious state. This was hardest to bear for Goher and the other women, her close companions of so many years. In their distress and concern for Mani they would often wake at night, and one night around this time, waking

from sleep and thinking of Mani, these comforting words came to Meheru as if from her: "I do not know when or how I go But this I know to where I goIt is to a place of indescribable beauty, Where God's Love enfolds completely." Yet despite Mani's condition and our sorrow, there remained an atmosphere of overflowing love, sweetness, purity and innocence radiating from her that seemed to grow as the days went by. Mohammed Mast had said on 9th August, Friday, that "Baba's sister will go tomorrow. Her pain will be over." Mani lived on past that Saturday. But looking back later, we all felt that her state changed that day and, as Mohammed had "predicted," she did indeed "go," turning further and further away from this world and closer than ever to Baba. Soon after she was in a coma, and her niece Gulnar, visiting a few days later, upon entering the room perceived the difference immediately, remarking, "She's with Baba now."

"I 'Will go at the moment Baba has chosen for menot one second before or one second after. "

It was at this time that one of her caregivers dreamt of Mani saying to her "You have no idea how much He loves me. You have no idea how much I love Him. You have no idea how happy I am."

Many dreams about this time heralded her reunion with Baba: dreams of Mani lying weak and sick then suddenly turning into Baba, of Mani skipping and dancing full of joy, of a great celebration soon to take place, of Mani walking down the front


t steps of her childhood home BabaHouse on the arms of her brothers Beheram and Adi and touching each step with reverence as they stepped down and walked away, of Mani entering Baba's Room and inviting everyone outside to come in and meet her. Earlier Mani had been touched by a letter from a Baba lover who wrote that while wa tching the video of Mani gesturing to Welc01ne to My World, she saw Mani's face turn into Baba's face. And someone close to the family saw Baba's brothers Beheram, Jal and Adi, plus Pendu r and Padri, standing on Meherabad Hill awaiting Mani, proud of all she had done for her Brother.

t posed, self-contained, almost regal, Mani had said, "That is me as I was with Baba" and it was that same Mani that I saw now in her. How could we not rejoice to see

From there, across Mehem's garden past her favorite flowering china-box bush, she was carried into Mandali Hall.

~ .+''C'

Mani had always told her family, "I will go at the moment Baba has chosen for menot one second before or one second after." His chosen moment for their Reunion was early morning, 7 :01 a.m., Monday, the 19th of August, when Mani opened her eyes with a look full of love and wonder, and after a few quiet breaths, slipped softly and gently into her Beloved's welcoming arms. It was as she had wished, in her room in Meherazad, facing her beloved Mehera's bed with the women mandali and a few others around her holding Baba's picture and saying His arne. From the moment she went, her face assumed an expression of joy and triumph, and as the moments went by her luminous smile seemed to deepen until you could not look at her without feeling her happiness. Once years ago, seeing a picture of herself in which she appeared com-

favorite "dress up" outfits of pink, mauve and beige, with a chiffon pink scarf framing her lovely face and a tiny "diamond" tilak on her forehead, Mani was gently placed on the same , stretcher used for .Mehera, and taken by Mehera's bed where rti was sung. Then she was carried into Beloved Baba's Room and as she rested at His feet, the prayers were recited, the Seven Names of Goel sung, and rose petals and flowers that had been offered to Baba were sho\\ered over her form.

Mani with Heather Nadel

the end of all her suffering written so clearly on her beautiful face? We said the prayers around her, and then Eruch-her dear partner in His

"I dreamt we were all dressed up and going to a great celebration. "

service these past 27 years-and the rest of the men mandali filed in for their own farewells. They departed, and after being dressed by the women in one of her

As she lay in her last repose before Baba's chair in the Hall, her face shining, her form covered with flowers, surrounded by singing, Baba-Iovers from Meherabad, Ahmednagar, Poona and Bombay streamed in to pay homage. Bhau was first to come, and DaraAmrit, followed soon by Khorshed. What a tribute to her loving personality to see the variety of people who came to honor her: the trustees of His Trust, all of the devoted Trust Office staff from the head clerk and chief accountant to the peons government officials, Pimpalgaon villagers young and old, the tailor and many other local people who had been touched by her kindness. Late morning, her family from Poona arrived, and despite their grief, RustomSohrab and the "Irani gang" from Baba-House entertained Mani with zest as they had so often before, singing ghazals, songs she had

15


written for them, and comic songs that used to make her laugh. At 3:15 P.1\1. it was time for a final Arti, and the Meherazad women mandali, with great love and grief, tenderly kissed their precious sister for the last time in Meherazad, the home she loved so dearly. It was moving to hear even the Meherazad pet dogs calling out a farewell. Then Mani's form was carried on the stretcher into the Swanee, and with Goher, Meheru, Katie, Gulnar and a few other women, she began her last journey to Meherabad. Reaching there, as they turned into the road going up the Hill, some of the women saw her face flush, as if she was exulting in the approach of her final goal. On the Hill, a group of Babalovers carried the stretcher into Baba's Samadhi, where Mani was placed on Baba's right-hand side as the prayers were said. From there, she was taken to Mehera's shrine, and lying in the space between her beloveds, she seemed to grow pinker with happiness.

property. Mani had always loved the atmosphere of freedom and renunciation surrounding cremations, and especially those that took place at evening time. As her form rested on the pyre,

6 P.1\I., at twilight, a time of day she loved, the men of her devoted family, Jangu, Rustom, Sohrab, Dara, Arvind, Meherdil and Jamshed lit her pyre to resounding calls of "Avatar Meher Baba ki JaU"

If legends are to grow from this

Open Up the Door Lyrics by Mani Irani There's someone at the door Lord Knocking at your door Open up the door Lord Open up the door

Chorus: Open up the Open up the I can't stand Open up the

door Lord door any more Lord door

Your face I adore Lord A glance I implore Lord 1 don't ask for more Lord Open up the door

Chorus I don't seek to soar Lord To planes above the shore Lord Just drown me in the core Lord Open up the door Chorus To your kingly store Lord Tears of pearls 1 bore Lord My rosary has more Lord Open up the door Chorus I kneel upon the' floor Lord Your grace upon me pour Lord To be with you for evermore Lord Open up the door Chorus

farewell to Mani, surely there will be one about her pyre. For those who have seen many cremations it was extraordinary in many ways. Extraordinarily beautiful, as the flames whipped by a west wind leapt up, dancing, intense, and bright against the deep blue evening sliy. Extraordinarily meaningful, as Meheru, dazed by sadness, suddenly saw forms among the flames dancing and bowing to Mani, and then Baba's face and Zoroaster's face alternating in the center. Extraordinarily rare, for as Eruch was standing silently nearby, two sadhus approached him, asking whose pyre was this? They had been passing by, and observed the smoke-but it was not the black smoke of the pyre of an ordinary person, it was the gray-blue smoke of the pyre of a saint. And so they had come to ask about this great soul and to pay their respects. The sister of Meher Baba? Ah, that explained it.

Mani's form was then placed on the Sabha Mandap, the large platform near the Samadhi. It is hard to And the pyre was extraordinarily describe the amazing atmosphere of long-lasting, for when all was done this gathering, the heightened sense and the mandali had returned to of Baba's presence, of Mani's joy, of Meherazad and others to their homes the immensity of the event of her and resting places, it went on burnReunion with Him, all against a ing and burning and burning. Norbackground of flowers garlanding her mally a pyre will burn for twentyform, songs in English, Marathi and four hours. A very large one, for Hindi, an outpouring of reverence thirty-six. The fire of Mani's love and respect from the villagers, the must have ignited the very air intimate moments of farewell from around her, for her pyre burned for her dear old friends Mansari and three days. Even thereafter the place Gulu, and others who had just where she had lain was warm. Those arrived from Bombay, and the three days were another kind of combined focus of the huge crowd ~iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii~ darshan for the Baba-Iovers who kept on her glowing form. round-the-clock vigil at the site, she looked sublime and serene, like passing the time with songs and the Princess she truly is. Poignant At about 5:30 P.M., once again Mani stories, energized by the atmosphere farewells from her dearest ones, was carried into the Swanee, and a of great peace and sweetness that heartbroken with grief. And then all caravan of cars, motorcycles and came from the fire. How delighted stepped back for the final covering of people on foot wound down the Hill Mani would have been to see among her form with sandalwood, and the to the Meherabad cremation ground them young people from the Youth finishing of the pyre. Sometime after at the southernmost end of the Sahavas recently held at Baba's


Center in Myrtle Beach (USA). One of them remarked that Mani's song to Baba, Open Up the Door, which had been sung so often at the Youth Sahavas, for the first time really meant something to him hecause of this experience. Even the flora paid her tribute that night. Years ago, Mehera had given a cutting from a "Christ's Cradle" plant at Meherazad to grow in the Pilgrim Centre. The Christ's Cradle flower, which Mehera had shown to Baba, is a beautiful white fragrant flower that blooms only at night, and then rarely. On the night of Mani's reunion, all the Christ Cradles in the Pilgrim Centre bloomed. Only the next morning did anyone notice there was one more plant outside, stuck away in the corner of the nursery, that had given seven blooms in the night-in direct view of the distant pyre. Mani's ashes, now collected and in Meherazad, will be interred on Meherabad Hill on September 8th, 1996 at 11 A.M. As per Meher Baba's wish, she is to be interred on His left (at the left side of the Samadhi), just as His beloved Mehera is on His right.

S

uch touching tributes to Mani have come from Baba-lovers around the world that it is fitting I share some words from them: "For a while she shone for all of us and lightened our burden with her joy of living, her singing, her laughter, her words of wisdom, her childlike manner-all of her a unique reflection of Baba's diamond that we will always cherish in our hearts.... For truly she was teaching us how to love Him. Now when we remember Mani, we will be truly remembering Him, because she was 100% Baba's." "It is difficult to imagine that our dearest Mani will no longer be at Meherazad to greet us and cheer us with her incomparable personality. For me, she was the one person,

besides Kitty Davy, who never seemed to grow old-who always projected such a magnificent, childlike zest for life and fun, and whose unquestioned faith and surrender to Baba was such that it permeated everything she did. She was, indeed, Beloved Baha's sister, but she was also, in a very real sense, everybody's sister. She was, and is, a beacon of Baba's Light, reflecting not only His Love and Compassion, hut also drawing us all closer to Him by her shining example."

"Surely the hea'Vens and the hea'VertS beyond the hea'Vens are recverberating with Be10'Ved Baba s di'Vine satisfaction at His glorious handi'Work in the form of His little sister Mani!"

"Mani, we always think of you as the one person who helped us the most through our most difficult time. Your compassion and understanding lifted our hearts. \Ve miss your effervescent presence and heartwarming stories." "So thanks! For the jokes, the toys, the scoldings, the hints, the pictures in words and mime, advice, your own good example, and the precious encouragement you gave us to try to love and please Him." "The world has lost a luminous star of love and dedication." "How we will miss your most special presence uniquely energized wi th such a keen focus upon your divinely human Brother, enlivened with the very intensity and humor and spirit of the Beloved Himself! ... How much difference you have made-and your memory will continue to make-in the lives of all who have known you! How beautiful and uplifting have been your words and your actions in a life lived solely for your Beloved Meher Baba!"

M

ani had a dream towards the very end of her life that she related to us. She woke up from sleep, and looking around, asked, weren't we going? \Vhen we said, no, we weren't going anywhere, she said, "Oh, it must have heen a dream. I dreamt we were all dressed up and going to a great celebration." So now we can imagine that celebration in His highest Court, with Beloved Baba at the head of the table, Mehera on His right and Mani on His left, as in the celestial company of Perfect Ones, saints and angels, He welcomes her to His \Vorld! As one of Mani's close ones wrote: "Surely the heavens and the heavens beyond the heavens are reverberating with Beloved Baba's divine satisfaction at His glorious handiwork in the form of His little sister Mani!"

T

o end this account, I turn to Mani. Some years ago, while writing her bool\. God-Brother, Mani laughingly said, "This is what I want for my epitaph!" She was pointing to a line written by Shireenmai, her mother, in a letter to Baba, describing Mani who was then seven years old. What Shireenmai wrote to her Son about His little sister was simply: "Mani remembers You night and day." There can be no higher tribute than that.

Avatar Meher Baba Iii Jai! -Heather Nadel Meherabad, India 24 August 1996


t

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These memories were shared at a renlenlb1'"ance gathe1'"ing f01路 Mani 路in Mandali Hall, Mehe1'"azad on 22 August, 1996.

Baba's dear ones gathered here today, we greet you with lai Meher Baba! Our Beloved One, the Highest of the High, the Omnipotent and Omnipresent is the One who brought us all here. He is the One who will ever be our friend and our guide all the wayan our journey Home to Him. For His beloved sister Mani as it was for His beloved Mehera, the journey has been completed and they are in blissful reunion with their Beloved Lord. For the moment in all our hearts there is a bottomless grief for our loss that only His Love sustains and helps us to bear. I have Imown them both all my life, and was fortunate that all my adult life with Baba I was permitted to be so close to Mehera and ManL It was a privilege and honor for me to be with Mani and help care for her in her time of need. They were not always painful times for us in the hospital. Baba's and Mehera's love was around us, and those precious times when we talked of them and remembered them or sang to them-especially since Mani initiated the singing-are for me truly beautiful memories imprinted on my heart for always. And we have felt all the love and good wishes and prayers of our Baba family the world over pouring in on her behalf in oceanic waves. He holds the key and it was so easy for Him to turn it on her behalf. But Baba's ways are unfathomable, and He who is all Merciful and Eternally Benevolent sees so much beyond our limited vision into far infinity. No matter how much we pleaded and prayed for His Mani's recovery, His is always the last say-the only say as it has always been. And this Mani wholly accepted.

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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~th~rpresencearound Mani was so courageous and cheerful, yet at one point in the hospital when her spirits were very low, she said in a small voice while sitting on her bed, "If this is what He wants of me, I must have Baba on one side of me and Mehera on the other," pointing to either side.

I danced in the morning when the world was begun, And I danced on the moon and the stars and the sun And I came down from heaven and I danced on the e'arth At Bethlehem I had my birth. '

I immediately came to her and looking into her eyes said in Gujerati, "Of course thev will be. They are both here" with you now, encircling you in their loving care." And I know she felt comforted.

I danced for the scribe and the Pharisee, But they would not dance and they wouldn't follow me; I danced for the fishermen, for James and John They came with me and the dance went on.

In the last week at Inlak's Hospital, there was an urgency in Mani-yearning to return to Meherazad to Baba's Home, so filled with precious memories of her times with Baba and Mehera. How could we know the time was to be so short?

Lord of the Dance

Chorus:Dance, then, wherever you may be, I am the Lord of the Dance said He And I'll lead you all, where~er you ~ay be, And I'll lead you all in the dance, said He.

Chorus I danced on the Sabbath and I cured the lame" The holy people said it was a shame; , They whipped and they stripped and they hung me high, And they left me there on a cross to die. Chorus I danced on a Friday and the sky turned black It's hard to dance with the devil on your back. They buried my body and they thought I'd gone. But I am the dance and I still go on.

very tangibly. Even when we were not with her, we felt Mani with us all the time. Every night I always fell asleep remembering her, and often woke up several times in the dark thinking of Mani and how she was doing. In the early hours of August 2, around 3:00 i\.~I., I was lying awake thinking of her, when around 3:30 i\.~1. I heard these words: "I do not know when or how I go But this I know to where I go: It is to a place of indescribable beauty, \Vhere God's Love enfolds completely."

And I know it was Beloved Baba in His tender from Mani. Knowing if caring for her had gathered I fell asleep I would Chorus around His dear Mani really forget the message, I wonderful dedicated helpers got out of bed and They cut me down and I leap up highto care for her every need scribbled it down on I am the life that'll never ever die' under Goher's supervisionan old envelope I I'll live in you if you'll liv~ in m~ especially Shelley who was found. I am the Lord of the Dance, said He. with her night and day. This great responsibility of caring \Vell you all know Chorus for His sister was a privilege, that in spite of all our an honor that touched each ~~~~~~~~~~~~路~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~heartfultprnye~Mani heart to its very core. went to Baba, but in the gentlest way. morning as long as she was Every Such an atmosphere of His presable to walk Mani would come to ence and love coming through Mani Seeing her face and form relax Baba's room for Darshan. One day permeated all around. It was a gift of beyond the bounds of pain is what after bowing down to the cast of His Sahavas, which even in her sustained us all. She was now comBaba's lotus feet, she mentioned frailest state she was giving to us pletely in her Beloved's loving care Mehera's name. Not wishing to each and all. where her heart had yearned to be interrupt her Darshan, I did not these many years, especially after remember till next day to ask her At night time we would all gather Mehera's passing from our midst. Our about it. Quite matter-of-factly she around her in her room whether she pain and grief for her suffering, and replied "Yes I see Mehera continuwas conscious of us or not, and we our loss, are beyond words. The two would sing together Baba songs or talk ally-she is here all the time." And I roses of Baba's garden are now hidden knew that Baba was there too. She of our times in Baba together-it was from our eyes, entirely in His care in once tried to point Him out to us and with reluctance that we left her blissful reunion with their Beloved. describe His radiant beauty. We felt presence.

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Looking bach. beyond these days into the past where Baba was so vital and present in our midst-the memory of those times with Him are a treasure beyond measure. There were difficult times, not always comfortable times, but also heautiful and happy times, lighthearted and filled with joy. Even the times when we-Mehera, Mani, Goher and I-were \\lith Baba

"}es I see Mehera continually

-she is

he1~e

all the time. ,.

in the ew Life could he descrihed as such. For in spite of the hardships, Baha was with us and we could laugh easily with carefree hearts. Once Mehera and Mani wanted to entertain Baba to amuse Him when we were in Belgaum, and they felt Goher was their star performer. Poor Goher, so self conscious, who took herself seriously, was persuaded much against her inclination to sing for Baba. The learning of the song took no time, but getting Goher to accept the idea of singing to Baba needed all Mehera and Mani's persuasive powers. At last the day came and Goher gave her performance. Baba listened with a very grave face and said, "\\That is this song you are singing to Me?" And He repeated some of the words with a slight difference which completely changed their meaning, and in mock surprise, looked askance at Goher. Poor Goher was so overwhelmed with bashfulness she almost disappeared into the ground, protesting that Baba was teasing her. There are innumerable memories of such precious times with our three most Beloved Ones. The last journey with Mani to Meherabad was spent by all who accompanied her just gazing at her

20 !'"'"

heautiful face and delicate form, savoring those last moments of the time she was to be with us. And for me, in remembering her lifetime of service for her Beloved Lord. \Vhat work she had done, what responsibility she had shouldered with love and grace and cheerfulness, and what joy and caring she had given to all around. This was reflected in the loving homage given to her by all who came to bow down to this perfect life lived in and for her God Brother. During the cremation, as with dazed and saddened heart I looked on not really seeing, I suddenly realized that the flames were dancing with a joyful gladness, and I realized how happy Mani would have been watching them trying to spring higher and

That night we all felt a lightness in our hearts, for we all felt that Mani had been freed fronl pain and was in indescribable bliss.

how much I love Him. You have no idea how happy I am." Then going into Baba's room, I heard Baha say in Gujerati, "She is mad to weep hecause Mani has come to Me." And He repeated it again, "Because Mani has come to me, she's weeping. She's crazy." That night we all felt a lightness in our hearts, for we all felt that Mani had been freed from pain and was in indescribable bliss. May these two whom Baha loved the best ever he watching over us and guiding us, with Beloved Baba, to help us to always please and obey Him as He should be pleased and obeyed. One of Mani's frequent requests to Ted when we visited Baba's Samadhi was for him to sing Have Thine Own Way Lord, but she would always say-"Have it Your \Vay." And that was the way it was for her with Baba all her life-that it should be His "Vay.

Jai Baba! ever higher in the wind. And I asked Janet that Ted sing The Lord of the Dance. Observing the fire with more attentive eyes I saw a host of forms bowing towards Mani in humble adoration. And in the center I kept seeing Baba's face one moment and Zoroaster's face the next. It was deeply comforting. aturally our tears also flowed freely for the loss of our sister. In Meherazad, quite wiped out with emotion, I heard Goher softly giving way to grief in her bed as I was entering Baba's roonl. I tried to console her as best I could and repeated Mani's words spoken to Heather in a dream: "You have no idea how much He loves me. You have no idea

... Baba knew how deeply we were suffering, but He spoke of His own pain, asking, "Why do you feel for Chanji? Who is he to you? It is I who should feel for him. You have no idea what a loss he is to Me." Baba's sadness over Chanji's death emphasized to us as that as Avatar He experienced everything on the human level as well as from His God state. As God, Baba felt the loss of no one, but as man, He was affected in the same ways we were. Arnavaz Dadachanji Gift of God, page 86


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rriving in Ahmednagar on August 9th, we were met by Bhau who had visited Mani that morning. "She no longer exists for the world," Bhau told us. "She exists only for Baba."

For the next nine days, pilgrims and mandali waited helplessly, wondering how long Baba would have her linger. During visits to Meherazad we would gather on the veranda not far from where she lay unconscious and inquire about her in hushed tones. There was sadness and concern to be sure, but there was also humor, which of course is how the Lord's ebullient sister would have wanted it. Reminiscences about her inevitably result in smiles and often hearty laughter. As Ted Judson remarked, "She was the life of the party." The seven women who served as her care-givers were referred to as the seven dwarfs, guarding over Snow \Vhite asleep in her glass case while she awaited her Prince.

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"She was not in a coma," Bhau would later say. "She was with Baba. Baba was coming closer and closer in order to bestow His final kiss." On the day of His final kiss, events happened quickly. At the Samadhi, Ted had just sung the last song of morning arti when Alan \Vagner arrived to announce Mani's passing. Appropriately, the last song had been Happy Trails. There was a unique atmosphere at breakfast, a mingling of sadness over our loss and joy for Mani's moment of triumph and reunion with her Beloved Brother. At 10 u.!. the buses took us to Meherazad where we filed past Mani who lay on a stretcher in front of Baba's chair in Mandali Hall. She was covered by garlands, wrapped in a yellow and pink flowered cloth, with a deep rose-pink chiffon scarf about her head. She looked radiant, her face luminous and white like marble. There was no trace of the illness

Iovejl!,etÂŁamfÂŁo~,'

which had caused so much discomfort to her in recent months. Some noted the hint of a smile. I halfexpected her to sit up and laugh, eyes twinkling, as one by one we Imelt and bowed our heads at her feet while \Vard Parks and others offered songs. After an hour, Aloba herded the pilgrims back onto the buses. (Yes, even for an occasion like this, Aloba was loudly adamant!) The events of the afternoon and the lighting of Mani's pyre are described beautifully in Heather's account, Mani's Reunion. Many of us stayed up late that night to sit by the fire. It had been a long and extraordinary day and we could only wonder about its significance. In the days that followed, a trench was dug on the east side of the Samadhi (the opposite side from where Mehera is buried). Alongside Mani's place beside Baba, the ground has been prepared for the eventual interment of Goher, Meheru, Katie,

21


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Korshed and Mansari, the work being done now so as not to disturb the area in the future.

our point about cancer and illness interested me-it is of course the old point of our lacJ{ of understanding that the enlightened ones have. We always see it from the material point of view, and they (experiencing creation as illusion) must act for the spiritual good. It's far from the Divine Plan to have no illness of the body-after all it is one of the main mediums of experiencing pain which is the opposite of pleasure. Duality (however illusory) expresses itself in dual experiences, and misery is as much in the Divine Plan as is so-called happiness. They are both experiences the soul must go through some time or another.

Y

"'\Vhy, that's an olive,' the stewardess replied. "'Yes, of course,'" Mani responded with as much savoir faire as she could muster. At this point, we were all in hysterics, for Mani's gift of narrative had brought each detail of the scene to wonderful life and now we all laughed along with her. "Did you like the martini?" a pilgrim asked. "I loved it," she said. "It was delicious." "Did you have another one?"

I I

Another way I look at it is this: even with all the misery there is, it is so difficult to 'tum away' from the world-well-nigh impossible to be disgusted sufficiently to tum to God :one. Just imagine if everything fine and serene, no illness, no

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22

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by Mani S. Irani

"It came in the most beautiful glass,' she sighed, raising the imagined vessel in her hand and describing it so vividly that we all saw it clearly. "Like a stork standing on one leg... " But her delight turned to revulsion when "I noticed there was this strange green thing in it. I thought it was a bug! I called the stewardess over: 'Excuse me, but what's this in my martini?'

What memories of Mani there are tucked beneath pillows all over the world. How lucky we are to have drunk from that glass.

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Experiences the Soul Must Go Through

Throughout this time, I kept thinking of a story Mani told us on the veranda at Meherazad three years ago. She was remembering her 1952 flight to the U.S. Baha had told her that this one time she could drink whatever she liked on the airplane. She knew the names of two drinks: a hloody mary and a martini. Since the former sounded rather crude, she ordered a martini (which she lmew of from the Nero \Volfe books she'd read to Baba).

" ro. Just that one," she smiled contentedly. "But I've tucked the memory of it under my pillow where I'll keep it always."

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misery, we'd stick to our ignorance like leaches, and such a stagnant way would hardly serve the development of the ever-awakening soul! I remember someone remarking, "Whv if there are spiritual masters in India don't they do something about the backwardness and disease of the country?" Just as though they were a crowd of missionaries, or a society for the prevention of disease and dirt! I replied that although they did a sweeping job it was not on germs, but on our ignorance, and even if they do not completely wipe it out, at least they jolt us enough from our selfsatiated complacency of accepting our illusory existence as the only and all.

Letters Fr01n the Mandali ed. Jim Mistry, p. 37 excepted from letter dated 27 December 1955


19 August, 1996

Meherabad, India by Billy Goodrum

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woke up right at seven that morning. I pulled myself out of bed and instead of going up to Baba's tomb I went into the reading room and began reading God-Brother. Mehrnoush Lorkalantari came in and was singing Open Up the Door. At this point neither one of us knew that only minutes before Baba's dear sister Mani had rejoined her Eternal Beloved. I heard the news, which had been announced at the tomb, a short while later when I walked into the dining hall for breakfast. Although I had resigned myself to the fact that Mani was not going to regain her health and wanted her to be with Baba, it was hard to accept that Mani, in all her love, joy and complete and utter devotion to Baba, was no longer going to be there shining like the sun and lighting up Meherazad. By Baba's grace, the day was to proceed in such a rapid manner that any self-indulgent feelings were to be swept away and overwhelmed by the moving and powerful events that were to follow. We boarded the bus and went to Meherazad at 11:00 that morning. Mani was lying on a stretcher on the floor in front of Baba's chair in Mandali Hall, her head toward the window and feet towards the door. She looked very beautiful and peaceful. \Ve entered from the rear of the Hall and one by one we had an opportunity to bow down in love and respect to the one who had freely given so much joy to us all. Before departing Meherazad that morning we performed Baba's arti. Mani's body was brought up Meherabad Hill that afternoon. The air felt electric, really almost a wild

quality, as people rushed to get close to the Samadhi when Mani's body was taken in. After being laid beside Baba and Mehera, Mani was moved to the Mandap where her body was profusely garlanded by all. Throughout all this there were many shouts of Avatar Meher Baba ki Jai, and the energy and intensity began to build. I looked

rise as, amidst shouts of Avatar Meher Baba ki Jai, the male members of Mani's family, led by Rustom and Sorab, lit the funeral pyre. I cannot even begin to elaborate on the feelings that were visihle on the faces of those present, particularly the women mandali and the men mandali and those who had cared for Mani throughout her illness.

I looked for a long time at the truly staggering beauty of Mani's face. It was glorious. There was a feeling of Baba's tremendous power and energy present...

Strains of songs to our Beloved rose to the sky with the white smoke from the pyre. The crowd remained for quite some time, the songs continued on into the night, and the intensity in the air gave way to a deep peacefulness. By eleven or so almost everyone had left except for several young men from the youth Sahavas, a couple of the residents, and myself. I couldn't leave. I couldn't pull myself away. And so I stayed throughout the night as the fire slowly burned.

for a long time at the truly staggering beauty of Mani's face. It was glorious. There was a feeling of Baba's tremendous power and energy present while at the same time a certain underlying peace permeated the whole atmosphere. Everyone came down the hill as Mani's body was taken to the cremation grounds at lower Meherabad. It was here that the intensity built to its height as many people attempted to get as close as possible for one last look at dear Mani's physical form. The women mandali each put flowers on Mani's body. Then a long line formed as everyone was given the final opportunity to put more roses on the growing mountain of flowers and garlands. Finally, the area immediately surrounding the foot-high brick platform on which Mani's body rested was cleared and large logs were arranged around her body in a manner resembling a log cabin, concealing her body. The energy continued to

As the first rays of the sun began to fill the sky, the few of us who had kept the night-long vigil rose from the fire and turned to go up the hill for morning arti. \Ve all looked at each other. We knew that even if we didn't see each other for years after this that we now shared a closeness that could be rekindled with a mere mention of this incredible night under the stars with Mani. The experience had made us friends for life-a sweet gift from Baba's dear sister Mani, a gift from a beautiful soul who had spent her entire life giving and giving more and more of Baba's Love to all who knew her. \Ve are all blessed indeed to have had the wonderful experience of knowing, loving and being loved by our Lord's dear sister, Mani Irani. Avatar Meher Baba ki Jai!


* More From

Pilgrims ...

Ron Greenstein

Mani, during one of her last appearances on Mehera'a porch

EI Cerrito, California

Prayer to Baba

Long Beach, California

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eloved Baba help us to be stron ger, for one of Your great towers of strength is no longer here with us to uphold You. Beloved Baba, help us to be more responsible, for one You could always count on has left us in order to heed Your call for her to come home. Beloved Baba, help us to better bring You into focus, for Your shining, sparkling lens is no longer here to bring us closer to You and clarify Your love for us. Beloved Baba, help us to be more loving to all we meet, for now our sweet sister in God has left us with this enormous treasure, grown so large as a result of a life spent in giving it away freely, creatively, unreservedly. Beloved Baba we will help You as we help one another in remembering Your lover, Your disciple, Your servant, Your sister, for through our remembering Your Mani we will be pleasing You, because remembering her is to remember You.

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Michael Shepard

Wendy Ward ast vear after Mani had been ill and had had the shunt inserted, I found myself with a strong urge to go to India, expressly to visit her. I felt that I would probably never get the opportunity to see Mani again if I didn't go quickly. Of course, I found out after I got there that the main reason for visiting was for Baba's darshan. When Mani greeted me in Meherazad, I inquired about her health and told her that I had been concerned. With a look of great patience, she put both hands on my shoulders and faced me squarely. Her gaze was so intense I felt she was looking into my soul. She radiated such light and beauty and joy that I was mesmerized. She said, "I am perfectly fine. You can see that, can't you, Wendy?" All I could answer was, "Yes, Mani, you are absolutely fine." I believe that Mani did not want me to worry over her illusory form. She really was absolutely radiant. This gift from her helped to ease the pain I feel from her physical loss.

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Avatar Meher Baba ki Jai!

Southington, Connecticut Mani, Keeper of most-precious mani-fold letters of family, Truly you were Baba's instrument, getting right to a visitor's core within the first minute, as lightly and casually as an aside. Picking up the end of a strand woven into Baba's Family Tapestry, like the thread of a conversation after one of those inevitable fiveminute interruptions, though it really might have been years, You reminded anyone that Home is there. And still you are And still you do in Baba in Love


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t Steven Barrie-Anthony EI Cerrito, California

Dear Mani, '1 Jhen

I was ei~ht years old, ,in the VV year 1990, I first stepped foot on Indian soil. I was surprised at the differences in the two cultures, and was interested in the many different customs and ways. My mother, my father and I all settled into the Pilgrim Center, and I quickly joined a group of kids around my own age, and began to pla~ with them. I remember going up to Baba's Tomb, and listening as many different voices sang songs to their Beloved Baba. I sometimes joined in with the melodic tones of the singing voices, and sometimes I just sat there, listening and watching and thinking, breathing in the heavy Indian air. One day, my father took me to bathe Mohammed. At that time, I did not realize how lucliy I was to be able to bathe a mast. I am very happy that Baba gave me that special opportunity. There are many memories that I have of India during that visit, and I could go on much longer talking about them, but one of my most special memories from that time is a memory of you. You were so kind and caring to me and the other children; you even took some toys for us to play with, and then you smiled and played with us.

purse, ,{ani!"

my attention, and it was then that I asked you, "\\That have you got in that purse, Mani?" j

You responded with grace to my nat-out question, stopping completely to give me my answer. You even took

\Ve then walked a few paces, but after just that few I once again exclaimed, "I really like that purse, 1ani!" You responded in a caring manner, and then told my parents that since I liked that purse so much, they might want to think ahout huying me one; there was one left at the Trust Office, and you told them how much you thought it cost. Then the day went on, and after a while v,Ie took our leave. After we left the Samadhi we went into town shortly, and then returned to the Trust Office so tha t we could catch a rickshaw. Just as we were pulling out of the compound, we saw your head sticking into the rickshaw! You were running alongside of the rickshaw as it was pulling out of the compound! You said, "Oh, the purse! The purse! You want to get that purse for Steven!" The rickshaw was quickly stopped, and we hopped out. My mother, my father and I all followed you into the Trust Office store where you showed us the purse for sale. It was more expensive than you had previously thought, so you graciously offered to pay the extra! You handed me the purse and said, "When I use my purse, I'll think of you. \\Then you use yours, you think of Baba. You can keep your Baba treasures in it."

Steven Barrie-Anthony with Mani 1990

I had a wonderful trip that One day, you and the other L;;iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii路iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii路-iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii iiiiiiiiii-iiiiiiiiiii.:.l summer, and I have many memories women Mandali were coming to visit from that time, but I think that I will out the contents of your purse, Baba's Samadhi, and my mother and always remember how kind you were showing it to me with loving care. It father and I rushed to be there with to me, and how loving and playful was so gracious of you to stop for this you. \Ve saw you and the other you were. \Vhen I picture you in my little boy on your way to Baba's tomb. women Mandali striding toward us, mind, the image that comes is you \Vith all the people around you, in and I rushed to your side. \Ve have a with your radiant smile, walking front and behind, you took the time picture of that moment: I am standtoward the tomb, to visit your Beto satisfy my young curiosity coming next to you, my baggy shirt loved. pletely, without any rush or annoypushed by the wind, and you with the ance. I have always remembered largest smile adorning your face, Thank you for your kindness, that, and I think I always will. \Vhen striding across the land toward our \\ ith love, you had finished explaining and Beloved's Samadhi. You were carrying Meher Baba's infinite love. In showing me the contents of your a beautifully beaded purse that day, purse, I exclaimed, "I really like that with many colors adorning it. It held

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Nancy Wall Tucson, Arizona

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f the many photographs I have of Mani, taken over the past seventeen years, one I particularly treasure is a simple shot of the two of us standing together, smiling at one another. I have many better pictures of her; this one is darl\, a bit grainy. But it's the first one, and it always reminds me of how quickly dear Mani's irrepressible playfulness and humor overcame my initial discomfort in Meherazad. I was in India the summer of 1979 at the insistence of a friend whose certainty of my connection to Baba was far stronger than mine. The previous two years had been filled with loss-and I had agreed to make the trip mostly out of curiosity. On the July day the photograph was taken, I had ridden the bus to Meherazad, thousands of miles away from home and friends, filled with apprehension. \\Then we arrived, I stood around feeling as though I ought to be somewhere else. Almost anywhere else. Mani, of course, immediately tuned into my uneasiness, and she came over and took my hand. Like a little girl, she looked up at me with that now familiar twinkle in her eyes and asked, "\Vould you like to see my tortoise? My nephews gave him to me." I was instantly charmed. How did Mani know I loved animalsr~ All my insecurity disappeared as we played, like two children, with the tortoise. Mani was so easy to be with-she reminded me of one of my aunts. (This aunt, I later learned, knew all about Meher Baba and was delighted to hear that I'd been in India with His followers.) Despite my insistence that I was not a Baba lover, Mani, from the very beginning, felt like family.

Baba's Jewel

Just over two years later I returned to India, due in part to Mani's willingness to take a risk. My persistent Baba friend had convinced me to apply for a sabbatical from the college where I was teaching so that I could again go to India with him in the fall of 1981. I needed a project to qualify for the sabbatical, and Mani, to my surprise, agreed to let me direct the play for Mehera's birthday. Even though I was still certain I was not a Baba lover, I was overjoyed by the prospect of the play, and I very much looked forward to seeing friends from my first trip, particularly ManL Working on Mehera's birthday play was a powerful experience, never easy, but the process broke the last threads of my resistance to Baba. \\Then, at the end of my two-month stay, I admitted to Mani that He had won me over at last, she didn't seem particularly surprised. "Oh, I knew you'd be back," she said with great conviction. Over the years I watched again and again as Mani greeted newcomers, welcoming them to Baba's home. She always seemed to know instinctively just the right way to relate to each one. Mani means "jewel" in Sanskrit. And like a jewel, Baba's little sister caught the light of His love and reflected it to all who came in contact with her.

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t Betty Lowman:

of vatar Meher Baba IG Jai! Our Palo Alto, California : hearts \\ ere full to overflowing as the hus bounced down the dirt road "'1 Then our familv went to India in ; little to town. VV 1987, we descended noisily on the Pilgrim Center. There were five of us in all and our three kids happily joined with all the other kids there in Sarah Dwyer: August. Because we couldn't tear Menlo Park, California ourselves away, we extended our three-week stay to six weeks. All the or me, a memorable experience with you involves a wall\ in Mandali were wonderful to us. 'Ve loved it when you called our daughter Meherazad garden and a pair of Shireen "Mummy" whenever you sa\, earrings. One day J was blessed with her. Gary our 11 year-old, was just the good fortune to walk with you under the wire age-wise and got to go through the garden. As J looked at to tea with Mehera. It was a wonderyou it occurred to me that here, indeed, was the most beautiful ful visit. woman I had ever laid eyes on. You \\Then the day to leave finally appeared to be a queen, an angel and also my "big sister," all rolled into one. How can I describe the aura of purity and joy that surrounded you, like a fine mist of invisible light.

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I then noticed your earrings-a pair of deep red ruby pendants. They looked like something right out of the Italian Renaissance. I commented on the charming ruby earrings. You responded b) telling me, in a lighthearted tone of voice, that the earrings were only cheap plastic ones found in the bazaar. "Baba," you said, "would never allow us to wear real jewelry." After I recovered from this surprise, I wondered what it was that could make those cheap fal{es look so rich, so brilliant. Your regal demeanor is such that ordinary mundane objects become like precious jewels through coming into contact with you.

Sue Jamison: EI Cerrito, California here was a delightful time in the early '70s when you were in Mandali Hall at just the right time of day for hand shadows. You proceeded to deligh t the spellbound pilgrims with an impromptu performance of all kinds of animals, birds, and fishcomplete with dialogue-that you magically made appear on the wall. All of this, using only your hands, fingers, and voice! At that time there were no children in the room, but every adult there was captivated by this wonderful, spontaneous concert. To this day, I have tried to duplicate what you did, and have never been able to get my fingers and hands to work together the way yours did. Another gift from the God Man to His baby sister.

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came, we went to Meherazad with the other pilgrims, said all our heartfelt good-byes and then, just as we were to leave, I peeked into Mandali Hall for one last quick wave. You were sitting with your back to me, but turned around and said "Oh!" and got up. Then everybody else in Mandali Hall got up too, and they all followed us out to the bluebird, sending us off with much love and a hearty chorus

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I feel myself to be lil{e those plastic bazaar earrings. I thank Beloved Baba from the bottom of my heart for transforming me, for purifying me by the vision of His exquisite beauty that shines so brightly in His dear, dear Mani. I thank the Divine Alchemist for turning our dross into gold. Avatar Meher Baba Ki .J ai!

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Steven Slemenda

David McNeely

Silverton, Oregon

Los Angeles, California

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mong the family of Baba lovers worldwide, only a relative few were blessed to lU10W Mani on any kind of intimate level, but surel~ all who met her were touched in some way by her exuberance, her charm, her wit. Much more significantly, in her presence one so strongly felt the love for Baba and the love from Baba that she exuded.

To me, Mani epitomized the essence of spiritual poise. Her lif' was so completely harmonized in love and service to Baba as a beautiful instrument of His glor~ -an Aeolian harp through which (in the words of , Adi's Prayer") His" breath of joy, breeze of compassion and wind of strength" played a continuous serenade. That sweet essence of poise is preserved in the memory of the last time I saw Mani, the summer of 1994, at Samadhi. The women mandali had come for their monthly arti and were seated in the portico as various lovers sang and played. One family, a father mother and two girls, launched into a song that had several verses. Early into the song, the older girl was stricken with a case of hicL:;; coughs that she could not suppress. In her love for Baba she continued to sing, and every several seconds through the song a very conspicuous "Hic!" punctuated the tender words and beautiful melody. I felt so embarrassed for her, as I'm sure did others. But after a brief pause when the song concluded, Mani said to her so gently, with a glimmer in her eye, "You are drunk with Baba's love!" Everyone laughed, all the tension immediately evaporated, and Mani had turned an awkward moment into a gesture of praise to the Master. That's poise, I thought. That was Mani.

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ears ago, I visited Meherabad as a favor for a friend. Knowing just about nothing of this Avatar Meher Baba, I bowed down at His samadhi rather with an attitude of "\\That the hell ';J" Two days later, on the morning of His birthday, I got clubbed over the head and pierced through the heart by His love.

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God because I wanted to, in any natural moment. That it wasn't something I had to aspiTe to do, it was something I was already doing! Learning sometimes seems easy and magical when the teacher has authority. From that day my concept of spirituality changed: what had been discipline became joy, and will became volition. Mani had authority.

Ursula Van Buskirk \\ alnut Creek, California

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len we first brought Eric to India he was three years old. You, Mani, sweetly offered him M&Ms. Eric, who never ate anything unfamiliar to him, refused to take them. I assumed that you thought that he was a Berkeley health-food kid, and told him that the candies were vitamins. Of course, you then succeeded in introducing him to M&Ms and Eric loves them to this day.

On a stopover in Paris on the way to India, a man near the Eiffel tower was selling paper birds based on a design by Leonardo da Vinci. Vve bought one for you and you invited us to come out early the next morning to witness its flight. All the Mandali were assembled in front of the clinic ._....--;;;-;;;-_'----------~ when we arrived. The bird's rubber band was wound up and off it went Some days later, still entirely right on top of the clinic roof. A serbewildered about what it all might vant boy had to climb up and get it mean, I asked Mani privately just down. We played with the bird until the what I was supposed to do now. She bus came. \Ve were so happy to share said, "Just remember Baba, and say in this entertainment with you and His Name two, maybe three times bring you this toy. every day." \Vell that was easy; I was already doing more than that whether \Ve remember the many charming I wanted to or not! But in this moOrigami things you made. One that ment I spent with her, she gave me a stands out was a whole group of nuns lifetime lesson on loving Baba. you made one day and put in front of Baba's picture. \Vhen I told Alexandra I was a stranger without stature of this story, it made her think of your any kind; yet Mani, the sister of God, childhood story of knowing that you allowed herself to be so wonderfully would be a real nun, a nun for Baba. simple and available to very little me. She taught me that I could approach


Louise Barrie El Cerrito, California n our last visit to India , in 1991 , I had a bit of an obsession about what seemed to be the pilgrims taking too much, wanting too much from the mandali. I had the feeling that people should back off and give you all a little more peace.

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Then, on our last day at Meherazad, when saying good-bye to you, you hugged me and as I looked at you, your face became Baba's. I just stood there in this embrace, looking into Baba's face, Baba's eyes. And I realized that it's His love that all of us pilgrims are clamoring for from those of you who spent so much time with Him. And I also realized that He had given you all so much love that it was right for you to pass it along to us, that, in a sense, you owed it to us, that it's what Baba wants. And also, I remembered that when we return from a pilgrimage there, that so many people here are clamoring to get together with us right away. They all want that fresh scent of love. And, by the same token, we don't have the right to say, "No, I'm too tired to get together with you." We owe it to them to get together and tell our stories of the trip. And then they pass it on. Just the other evening at the Discourse meeting someone was there who had just recently spoken to a pilgrim upon her return from India. He told us some of what she had said and we all clung to every word. There was such a strong feeling of Baba's love and presence filling the room. And, of course, Mani, you were much in our hearts that night, as you are always these days. Thank you for passing on so much of what He gave you. All His Love.

Cindy Lowe Oakland, California

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ne day at Meherazad I was sitting in the caravan playing classical guitar. Just as I began to play a particularly lively piece by Ruis Pipo, you appeared outside the door, listened for a moment and began dancing to the music. It was the most beautiful dance I've ever seen. \Vhen I finished the piece, I told you it was called Danza. You said, "You see! I

knew that!" and went on your way. I will always remember how you looked, perfectly framed by the doorway, dancing and smiling at me while I played. I also remember a time when you played sitar and sang in Mandali Hall for another western musician and me when no one else was there. It was ' the most musical and magical singing and playing that I have ever heard. I wanted the time to go on forever.


Hughie Macdonald Menlo Park, California

I Gave Mani the Power id you know that Baba gave sharp eyesight on Mani's part. Mani is \Ve finished fine and, to my surprise, I an incredible actress and her every discovered from the many comments Mani the PO\VER? Yes, she was given the power to read minds and move gave me lessons in presentation, that no one had noticed that Mani ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ needed her glasses in order to divine thoughts by Baba Himself. I've forgotten the precise read minds. \Ve were all details, but one day He gave having too much fun-Mani some answers to Mani which made it fun-but it sure gave she was to memorize and speak me a test. And a fond memory, to boot. out, one at a time, upon getting the proper secret signal from Baba. Later Baba announced to the group that he had given the PO\VER to ManL Baba then tested Mani's powers by having Mary Marino her give answers to various Portland, Oregon questions asked hy the group. The question would be posed, n 1993, Mani described Baba would give a secret signal, looking closely at Baba's and Mani would give the signedface on the tree outside of for answer. The group was Mehera's window, not all that impressed and became fully long after its appearance. She convinced that Mani had the discovered that the bit of bark PO\VER. Many in the group forming Baba's nose appeared became jealous and were sad to be loosening. She grew that Baba hadn't given them the concerned over what to do. power also. I don't remember if Dare she interfere with this Baba let them in on the joke or image of Baba that He crenot, but Mani later realized that ated? Dare she risk the loss of the trick was more magical than His nose? How would Mehera she had at first thought. For ~~~~~~ ~~~~_~~~iiiiiiiiiiiliiiiiiiiiiiliiiiiiiiiiiI _ _~ feel were that to happen? Of Baba had to know the questions course, Mani brought the so I was feeling quite confident that our problem to Baba. in advance in order to give answers rather unrehearsed trick would succeed. for her to memorize! Real magic disguised as a trick? And lots of fun The next day, still very concerned, The trick went just fine for the first too! she went outdoors to look at the tree. part, and then Mani began having And there, [can't you just hear Mani's some difficulty 'when the next phase Not to be outdone and forever advoice saying "and there, before my required that I hold some objects dicted to fun, I, the Great Humble eyes"] she saw that Baba's nose was rather close to her. Making some Hughdini the third, aka Hubris Hudibras as if glued in place by a spider that natural excuse it seems she now had Hughdini, wondered if I, too, could give makes a thick, sticky web. She had to put on her glasses in order to fully Mani the PO\VER. I was at quite a dis"knitted" her way under the bark, advantage, not being God and all, but I read the thoughts! Not yet 40, I had successfully gluing it to the tree. Baba not anticipated that the ability to see persevered and came up with a secret had taken care of the situation fully: close up diminishes as presbyopia sets method to allow Mani to read the minds Mani's dilemma was resolved and in. I felt that the trick was exposed and thoughts of pilgrims during a SunBaba's image on the tree was preand became nervous and began to day show-and-tell. \Vhile a good magiserved for Mehera's continued rush things, which made it even cian never tells his secrets, I can tell upliftment and enjoyment. harder for Mani to have the PO\VER. you that the mind-reading did require

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Alexandra Cons Kensington, California

Michael Campagna South Pasadena, California

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felt very blessed to have met ManL When Deborah and I performed for her she said she was reminded of quwalli music. She got out her sitar and tapes and taught us songs, and even gave me her sitar and had me keep it in my room for three days. She would wink at me and say, "Are you sure you never played this before?" The best thing was one day she sat in the garden and sang in my ear. I have no idea how long because time had stopped. One day we were all sitting on Mehera's porch. It was very hot and she was not pleased with the entertainment-Jamie Newell was singing his beautiful song about how Mehera loves Baba and Mehera began weeping. Mani slugs me in the arm and says, "Can't you see what's happening? Do something silly." I don't know why but I began singing Every time I go to town the boy~ keep kickin'my dog around in a silly Appalachian voice. So Mani holds her nose and starts singing along and all the women mandali and Mehera hold their noses and sing along. Now Mehera is happy and laughing. Then Mani turned it into a nledley and began singing Old McDonald. When she did her first animal imitation-a dog-I actually looked around for the dog. Every animal she imitated was stunningly accurate.

have many memories of your bright, sparkling humor and your ability to charm and entertain us. One of my own sweet memories of your loving concern is from my visit in 1987. At that time, my dear friend Kay, who was only in her 40s and had two young children, was dying of lung cancer. I was shocked and saddened by this and had brought her photograph to Baba's samadhi to pray about her. I was very focused on wishing for Kay to feel that Beloved Baba was with her. Although I felt shy about asking to meet with you and taking your time away from your busy Trust work, I also felt that I should tell you about Kay's illness. Your response was so loving, instantly putting me at ease and assuring me that you did want to know what was happening in Baba's American family. I also felt especially blessed in your telling me that the following day, when you and the other women mandali were going for Baba's arti at the samadhi, you would tell Mehera and that you and she, too, would pray to Baba on Kay's behalf. When I later spoke to Kay's husband, he told me how inspiring Kay's passing had been and how radiant she was in Baba's love. I knew that Baba had been with her and that you had helped Kay in her journey home to Him. This experience, and your Baba-filled love, touched me deeply.

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Avatar Meher Baba ki Jai!


Cynthia Barrientos Seattle, Washington

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n November,1994, I made my first pilgrimage to Meherabad. As a new Baba lover, I felt pretty special since I had experienced a number of vivid visions of Him. Without much humility, I shared the dreams with anyone who asked about my coming to Baba. As each person oooed and ahhhhed, my ego grew and GREW, and GREW! In this boasting, I began to separate myself from others and ultimately lose my sweet connection with Baba. When I arrived at Meherazad, Mani approached me and said with a twinkle in her eye, "So, here is our dream girl!" I felt pleased that she had heard about my visions. Knowing that she, too, had seen Baba many times since He dropped His body, I believed that the two of us were part of an exclusive circle. She moved in, close to my face and whispered, "I want to hear about your dreams. Come see me on Tuesday and we can share." Now my ego was getting REALLY huge, knowing that Baba's sister was wanting to hear my stories. When Tuesday rolled around, I imagined a private meeting, sitting quietly with Mani on the porch and secretly telling her about seeing, hearing, smelling and touching Baba. As I sat on the veranda steps waiting, a woman came rushing across Mehera's garden, spotted me, ran over and said with urgency, "Mani is WAITING for you! She wants you in Mandali Hall right away!" Yikes! Mandali Hall? Realizing her mischief, I hurried over to a VERY crowded room and saw that she had reserved that space on the floor, just to her right, for me. She grinned with that familiar twinkle in her eye, motioned for me to come and sit, then said, "Now, about those vi. S1Ons ... " Thud! My heart raced and I felt an embarrassing glow fill my cheeks. "What happened to our exclusive

meeting?" I thought with momentary disappointment. As soon as I sat down next to her, I completely understood the concept of "the One in the many". I realized that I AM a part of a very special circle that includes ALL of humanity! I silently asked Baba to help me share His visions as gifts I have received and to communicate in a way that allows HIM to let us know how we all get to "wake up" in a variety ways. For me, it took vivid sensations to know that He is the God in us all, who I long to see and be with forever. Thank you Baba, for placing Mani in my life at that moment.

Ron Greenstein El Cerrito, California

J

ai Baba! One day in Meherazad in the fall of '73, the pilgrim population reached a new high (in numbers). This was before Pilgrim Center busses; and, as the day ended, Meherazad was thick with cars, rickshaws and bicyclists. The routine was to embrace and say "Jai Baba" to each of the mandali members. It was very hectic as I made the rounds to each one. I approached you twice and both times found crowds around you, waiting to say their good-byes. Instead of waiting patiently with the others, I went off to say good-bye to some other mandali. On my third approach I found still yet another batch of pilgrims before you, patiently waiting their tum. I thought to myself that during this day I had greeted you with a wonderful embrace when I had arrived, and had an opportunity to embrace you another time as well. This, I thought, was quite sufficient, and maybe I should be satisfied; give the others their chance, and just get into my rickshaw to drive away. While sitting there waiting, what do I hear above the din and commotion but my name being called out by Mani in search of me. What could be the problem? You were searching for me because

we had not embraced and said our "Jai Baba's." "Come here," you said to me . 11" with open arms, '" you re speCla . To be remembered in this manner was truly a glimpse of a love so beyond anything I had ever come in contact with, and it will remain with me forever as a gauge of what Meher Baba has come to give us all.

Greg Dunn Pleasanton, California

"'\1 Then in India in 1987 I heard VV from several different people that Baba had said Mani would return for one more lifetime, as a Perfect Master. To this day I have no idea about the reliability of this story, but it matters not: I found myself entertaining the idea while there: Then one day I happened to be standing outside the Trust office when Mani emerged. She was decidedly businesslike as she did so, and was headed directly for a car which was to take her to some other appointment of an importance I can hardly imagine. Nevertheless, on impulse, I took up stride with her, and with astonishing impertinence related what I had heard about her forthcoming incarnation, then asked: "What I want to know is-can I be part of your circle?" She stopped and looked straight at me, at which point I knew my entire career as a Baba lover and even Marginally Acceptable Person was on the line. Even now, when I think of that moment, I imagine a laser beam about an inch in diameter emerging from the area of her third eye and melting me into a pool of butter. But all she said (in a queenly British accent and with a tone somehow both gentle and stinging) was: "Ask me then!" She then disappeared into the waiting car. This was the last time I saw Mani alive.


Stephanie Ervin age 13 Long Beach, California

O

ne time when I was in India I took Mani the notebook whe~e I had written all my dreams about Baba. I remember Mani taking her reading glasses out and reading every word loudly and clearly. I felt special as some people nearby listened to my dreams. It was a feeling I will never forget. Sometimes when I was on Mehera's porch, Mani would show me the toys there. They were so neat. Mani had a flower with sunglasses that danced. She had wooden tops that she was a master with, spinning them onto my hands. I remember laughing at how much it tickled. Mani was always a child inside. One time I asked her, "Mani, how old are you?" "Seven hundred years old," she answered my questioning face. "Sometimes I feel as if I'm seven, and sometimes I feel like I am a hundred." She would usually say that I was her walking stick, to help her walk. I remember she used to go with the children and wear a paper hat. One time when I was there a friend and I got into an argum~nt. Before I knew it, Mani took us together. She brought us over to a cabinet and said, "Princess... Princes Oh, yes, it's Baba's children well, they're here to see you... can we come in?" She opened the cupboard. It was full of toys. She took out the wind-up toys and played with them. Soon more children came, too. Mani told my friend and me that we should be happy. Mani will always touch my heart. I have these memories of her to keep forever. And her spirit will not die.

Clockwise from top left: Mani reading Stephanie's notebook; Mani trying on Josh's sunglasses;Mani greeting unknown girl; Mani hugging Chanton Smith.

The following letters were read out to Mani shortly before she left usfor Baba. They were much appreciated by the other women mandali.

to because Baba already knows. Mani, don't feel scared or worried, and know that we will always remember you and know that you are in the beautiful warm and safe hands of Baba.

Josh Lee

Janani Lee

age 10 South Pasadena, California

age 8

Dear Mani

Dear Sweet Mani,

It's Josh. I heard about what happened to you. And even though I'll miss you, I feel very happy for you because you are going to Baba. Even though I only met you once, I feel like I've known you and Baba forever, and that is why I'll miss you. When you meet Baba, tell Him about us. Well actually, I guess you don't have

I remember India and the wonderful time I spent on the porch with you. I heard that you are not feeling good. I love you very much and I think about you when I pray to Baba. I know that you are not dying, but going to Baba.

f1vfSmetCam~ b

.,m

_N

,m

I love you! Jai Baba!

33 ~,.,

..~ _ _â&#x20AC;˘

.,


Program for Mani's Interment Meherabad, India

James Wilson Scotts Mills, Oregon uring our last trip to India in January of '94 I was one of the pilgrims present at Baba's tomb when the Meherazad family came for their regular Samadhi visit. After arti and songs of love to Baba, Mani stopped for a visit at the gadi across from Mansari's kitchen, and a group of us gathered around as she told how, as a young girl, she would be with Baba and Mehera in the beautiful and tranquil atmosphere of the courtyard. Baba would be reclining on the gadi, birds chirping, the breeze fanning Baba, and she described the setting with such tenderness and poetry. One day Baba told them that the time would come when thousands of people would come there from all over the world. Mani's eyes opened wide, so filled with amazement, as she recalled her child-like thoughts wondering how that could ever happen. There she was, some 60 years later, eyes fixed on the gadi, undoubtedly seeing her Beloved resting there, and telling us of that sublime time in their life. aturally we were all aware that thousands of pilgrims would be arriving soon for the Beloved's Amartithi. Mani folded her hands across her chest, closed her eyes, and bowed to her Beloved.

D

i ~i ,.l~u""",."""' ... I ft.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _w==o

34

_

.

.

Khorshed placing rose petals

7 September 1996, Saturday Morning Meherazad open for pilgrims a half day-Buses leave at 12:30 pm. Evening Janet & Heather take Mani's Urn in the car to Meherabad. At Meherabad Urn is given to Dolly up the Hill to place in the Samadhi immediately. Urn is placed in Samadhi at Baba's right-hand side on upper pharsi platform so that pilgrims may offer their respects to Mani after taking Baba's darshan. An attendant is to be on duty to keep watch during the darshan period until Samadhi is

closed. Urn is to be kept locked inside the Samadhi overnight.

8 September 1996, Sunday Morning During the morning cleaning of the Samadhi, Urn is to be placed on Baba's right-hand side window sill. After cleaning, Urn to be kept again on upper platform until 11 AJ,,1. so that pilgrims may pay their respects. ( 0 sitting in Samadhi during this period.) Once again an attendant is to be on duty at all times until the mandali arrive at 11 A.M.


10:50 A.M.

Darshan queue is stopped, and area immediately in front of Samadhi door is cleared of people. Men volunteers to form a line across the portico by Samadhi entrance up to the entrance of the interment site enclosure.

age and physical frailty of some of the mandali members, there is an enclosure around the interment site. As the enclosure is small, only the men and women mandali and Mani's immediate family are to be inside during the interment. Those include: Goher, Meheru, Arnavaz, Katie, Manu,

come forward and drop a few pinches of sacred earth from Baba's and Mehera's resting places into the chamber, along with flower petals and a small garland. Hari Paramatma is sung. Ted slides a pharsi lid over the chamber as Baba's JAI is said. Flowers are put on the pharsi lid.

Interment Ceremony

11:00A.M.

Please do not embrace mandali on this occasion. Women and men mandali arrive from Meherazad. \\Tomen mandali go into the Samadhi, for arti and Beloved God prayer. After their darshan, women mandali go to Mehera's Shrine, while men mandali go into Samadhi for darshan. After men mandali come out from Samadhi, Jangu brings Mani's Urn from the Samadhi into the enclosure around Mani's interment site, accompanied by the women and men mandali and Mani's family members.

Gulu, Khorshed, Mansari, Roda, Eruch, Bhau, Aloba, Bal, Meherwan, Falu, Jangu, Gulnar, Dara, Amrit, Mehernaz, Meheriar, Arvind, Meherdil, Meherose, Dilruba, Shireen, and Jamshed, only. Ted will be present to position the Urn. Intennent Ceremony As Jangu holds the Urn, mandali say a few words about Mani. Then Jangu hands the Urn to Ted who places it into the chamber as all call out "AVATAR MEHER BABA ki JAI!" The Master's Prayer is said.

Please Note: Due to the large crowd, and the

Then mandali garland Mani's marble calling out "AVATAR MEHER BABA ki JAI!!!" Mandali and family leave the enclosure and mandali depart for Meherazad. The enclosure is opened so that Baba-Iovers may pay their respects to Mani at her resting place. An attendant is to be on duty at the interment site at all times thereafter until Ted can move the permanent stone pieces onto it.

Jai Baba!

Each of the mandali and family

35


I Want to be With You Always

I

n Toka we were to stay in little huts of "tatta" (bamboo matting). Workers were at it night and day in order to complete them within the deadline given by Baba. Even so, our huts weren't quite ready when we reached Tolm. After we got down from the bus, we had to wait outside for a while until the cow-dung flooring had dried. As some last-minute touches were also being given to the roof, there was a bamboo ladder leaning against one of the huts. The women's quarters always had a closed-in courtyard in the front. Made of tatta, it served to give privacy to the cloistered women mandali. Here in the courtyard the women could step out from their huts without seeing men or being seen by them. Here they would sit to clean the vegetables and grains, and here is where they would keep their rolledup beddings during the day. Excitement was when it would start to rain and everyone ran out to gather up their things. I loved joining in the squeals and the scamper. As soon as we could enter the huts, Mehera, Naja, and the other women began setting up things which would be needed for Baba's care and comfort when He came over from the men's side.

36


by Mani S. Irani

Being children, Myna and I ran out to play in the courtyard. In one corner of the courtyard was a large tamarind tree. Tamarind is a very sour and tart fruit that grown-ups forbid children to eat because it is "bad for the throat." So children are always stealing tamarind from other people's trees, just as my school friends and I did many a time. Of course, if Baba ever ordered me not to eat tamarind, I would be bound forever by His order. Therefore, Baba must not see me picking up or eating a tamarind. Which is why, as we stood in the courtyard looking at the tempting tamarinds lying under the tree, I looked around carefully to see if Baba was in sight. He was not there. Nobody was there. \Ve were free to gather up the fruit. But just as I bent down to pick up a tamarind, Myna and I were startled by a clap, loud and clear, coming from behind us! We turned around sharply and couldn't believe our eyes! There was Baba, sitting on the bamboo ladder which the workmen had left standing against the hut. Baba was sitting on an upper rung of the ladder as naturally and gracefully as though He were in the most comfortable chair.

Not an easy thing to do, I know, I have tried it. We stared. Baba looked very beautiful with His flowing hair and long sadra. He held out both hands and gestured to us, "Come to Me." We ran over and stood on either side of him. Baba looked at us lovingly, and turning to Myna His hands gestured, "Ask, ask for anything you want. Ask right now, and I will give it to you." I stood transfixed. This was truly like a fairy tale where the good fairy waves her wand and says: "Make a wish, I will grant it." "But here is no fairy," I said to myself. "Here is God Himself saying 'Ask Me for anything you want, and I will give it to you.!" There was no time to think it over. Myna was taken totally by surprise and was unprepared for making a wish. She said what any Hindu girl of her age might say, especially a girl whose marriage was soon to be arranged by her family. She said, "Baba, I want a very handsome husband and a very grand wedding." Baba smiled at her and gestured. "Granted." Then He turned to me and

His fingers moved swiftly, saying, "Ask. What is it you want? Ask quick!" It was like Baba was saying, "Right now I'm in the mood to give. Ask, and I'll give you whatever you want." I looked at Baba and said, "I want to be with You, always." Baba looked very happy with my reply. "Granted!" He said and hugged me. This "Make a Wish" game was forgotten after a while. Some years later Myna got married to the most handsome man you can imagine. Wedding guests would ask in wonder, "Where did Patel find such a handsome son-in-law?" And my wish was granted too. I shall be for ever and ever thankful that I added the word "always" at the end of my wish, "I want to be with you-ALWAYS." As you can see, you have to be a bit of a lawyer when asking God for a boon. You have to make sure that you don't leave out any clause in your favour.

God-Brother, pages 97-102


Welcome to the

Love Street Bookstore by Dina Snow Step right in

.

The name has changed, but not the interior!

T

he most exciting thing to tell you about is that Avatar Meher Baba will soon have a page on the World Wide Web! We are working toward having our catalogue-complete with photos of every book cover-out there in cyberspace where anyone and everyone may encounter it. Since the biggest selling item on the Internet is books, we may have many visits from curious net surfers. It will also afford us the opportunity to provide better service to you because we can add new items as they come to us and keep everything else up-todate. Our current paper catalogue is nigh on two years old. We are adding a page of new items to it and will be sending it out to people not currently on our list. When the supply is gone, we will have a new one printed. Look for that some time in the new year. But for now, the best (and only) way to keep current with the new releases is to read this column... which I know you do.

T

he first book to tell you about is a paperback from Australia. Ray Kerkhove, who lives on Avatar's Abode in Queensland, conceived the idea, did the research, and wrote it. You may feel that there are ample introduction-to-Baba books around, but there are none quite like this one. It fills a niche that has hitherto been empty. Titled Avatar Meher Baba, His Life, His Message and His Followers, it measures roughly 6" X 8", is 60 pages in length, is published by Peter Milne, and sells for $6.00. Its title is

such a mouthful that it is affectionately known at the Bookstore as the OZ Book (OZ being the unofficial abbreviation for Australia.) This new book stands apart from many that have come before it. It contains the events of Baba's life from start to finish, two sectons on the status of Meher Baba and the concept of Avatar, His message, key concepts, charts from God Speaks, many quotes from Baba, and a section on Baba's methods. Baba's words are used copiously throughout, so a newcomer is not left wondering what He said. The final section is the one that is a radical departure from any other introduction. Ray talks about us! The section on His followers discusses their behavior, their rites and ceremonies ("They don't have any"), how to tell them from other people ("You can't... except perhaps a Baba lover will have photos and books about Meher Baba in his home"). He talks about the trusts and foundations, special days (e.g. Amartithi, etc.), the absence of a hierarchy, and the four main Baba centers. A few reviews from people in high places: ".. .It's a very very good addition to the Baba literature... " Eruch Jessawala; ".. .I liked every page..." Bal Natu. I certainly can't top that!

I

have just spoken to Elaine Cox, producer of the very long awaited Song of Huma, part 2. This fabulous tape is finally available! Five years in the producing, the tape will sell for $12 even though it's worth much more than that. In case you are not lucky enough to have heard or, better yet, bought part 1 (now completely unavailable), this is the story: In the 1920s Baba wrote many profound

(how could they not be?!) ghazals that were published under the pen name of Huma. The women mandali used to sing these ghazals a cappella, and they sounded very beautiful. In 1991 Elaine took some top quality recording equipment to India and recorded Katie, Mani, and Rhoda Mistry singing many of these ghazals. Elaine then brought the recordings back to the States and started the search for the best of musicians to accompany the women's exquisite voices. This she has done with some unobtrusive yet enhancing flute, tabla, synthesizer, tamboura, and sitar. Elaine reads a translation of each ghazal before the singing starts. The result is beautiful, moving, soulful music. Song ofHuma, part 2 $12.

N

ow is the time to be thinking about how many of the Baba calendars you will be wanting for 1997. We should have them in by late October. Christina Arazmo, the very talented graphic artist who designs and produces them, tells us they will be a little larger this year. They are full of wonderful photos of the Beloved with many of His most inspiring messages at the top of the page. All the dates of the important happenings in the life of the Avatar are written in small print at the top of the square for the date, leaving you room to write in your own notes. Try to get your orders in as early as possible. Often, people order one for themselves and then write back to request many more after realizing what great Christmas gifts they make. Operating on a very limited budget, Christina only prints up the quantity she gets prepaid orders for, and I had to put the order in for 300 in Septem-


ber. So please do realize there is a limited quantity. There were so many disappointed people last year! Calendars sell for $7 each.

F

rom Australia we have beautiful silver Baba medallions made of solid sterling silver-92.5% They have a profile of Baba on one side and Mastery in Servitude, some Indian writing, the date, and the five religious symbols on the back. They were originally cast as gifts for those who had contributed 5,000 rupees or more to the construction of Meher Puri Center in Hamirpur in 1975. One was presented to Mehera who eventually passed it on to Dhun, the sister of Roshan Kerawala. Roshan received it from her and asked John Borthwick of White Cloud Trading Company to have the coin reproduced. This he did, adding the very nice touch of a small loop at the top through which a silver chain can pass. This silver Hamirpur medallion is one pendant that you can keep on permanently, through showers and all. It sells for $35. hris and Pris Haffenden, known locally as The Still Yet More Chamber Players, have been getting lots of work lately playing at coffee houses, weddings, bar mitzvahs, etc. Chris plays a very sweet-sounding oboe, and wife Pris plays accoustic guitar, and transcribes and arranges their music. Together they have assembled a very extensive and eclectic repertoire. Whenever they play for us at the Center (when they are not off on a commercial gig somewhere!) it's a delightful addition to the program. In response to our constant requests, they have finally released a tape. It is entitled Sum-

Mani with Friend, and two adoring admirers Dina and Diana Snow

C

mertime Serenade and has some of the most beautiful compositions of Gershwin, Porter, Berlin, Mozart, Tchaikovsky, and others. It runs for 45 minutes and costs $10.

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hope nobody ever forms a Love Street Bookstore Anonymous for those fortunate souls who are addicted to buying Babaphenalia and Baba books! I received two letters which gave me a such a giggle that I have to share them with you. The first is from Flagg Kris of California,

who writes, "Jai Baba, Dina. I'm writing you from Mexico on vacation, but have had an uncontrollable urge to order another book!" ...and proceeded to order yet another copy of Gift of God for a friend. This book, the autobiography of Arnavaz Dadachanji, is one of the most compelling books we have ever had the privilege of selling. Arnavaz shares such intimate details of her life with Baba, it takes our breath away. There are things written here that have never been in print before and

39


give us greater depth and insight into the life of Meher Baba. I have noticed that about 80% of the people who buy a copy for themselves ask me for more to give to their friends. As Nancy Wall just said, "Please send me two more. I can't seem to hang on to them!"

the involutionary process (or unwinding of impressions) until your soul consciously realizes its true existence as God-Infinite Power, Knowledge and Bliss. The apparent difficulties and adventures within this dream are what makes The God Realization Game interesting (and maddening)!

The second funny letter comes from a doctor in North Carolina who was staying at the Pilgrim Center on Avatar's Abode the last time I was home in Australia. (He has been to the Abode seven times. He feels it is that special.) He says in his letter, "When I read your words in the LampPost, I hear your voice in my head-loud, bright, and clear as a bell. I listen, and therefore, I buy!" I love it!

How to play? An infinite number of people can and do play this game more or less continuously, but 2-6 players are suggested with this game board. Players become soul mates, and even though you are trying to beat each other, you will find that the game often goes better if you feel a sense of kinship (and even sympathy) with your fellow players. There are many dangers on the path, so for Heaven's sake, be careful!

J

e have a new supply of Raphael Rudd's double CD, The Awakening. For those of you who didn't catch the last two issues of the LampPost, The Awakening includes the previous CD and tape from Raphael, the incredibly popular Skydancer. This features Raphael on piano and harp, with a vocal by Annie Haslam, Seasons, and the most wonderful version of the Gujerati Arti I have yet heard, by Jane Brown. The other CD in The Awakening is a series of recordings, both vocal and instrumental, that Raphael made in London in 1975 with Pete Townshend and Phil Collins. The set sells for the very low price of $20.

im Meyer-artist, singer, songwriter, and musician extraordinaire-has shown his Renaissance talent in yet another direction: he has invented The God Realization Game. Yes, you too can achieve God realization-and for only $10!! Be the first on your block! It took Jim about six months to design and produce the game. To check its accuracy, Jim sent the game to Bhauji, who was delighted with it and gave it a great review. Bhau said, "...the board game is really nice, and it does not require any addition, deletion, or alteration. It is quite perfect... " The game is based upon the explanation of creation and its meaning by Avatar Meher Baba. The goal of The God Realization Game is exactly the same as the goal of lifeto become God-realized as fast as humanly possible. In this game you achieve God-realization by moving your game piece (which represents your individualized ego-mind or Jeevatma) from the beginning of its apparent creation (or OM point) through its ever-expanding gross consciousness via the evolutionary process (or winding of impressionssanskaras) until it perceives itself as a human form. Then you move through

W

W

ith our intense focus on Baba's darling sister at the moment, I would be remiss in my duties if I did not point out that we have two books written by ManL God-Brother was written just a few years ago and tells us what life was like with her GodBrother when Mani was a child. These are positively delightful stories with whimsical illustrations by Wodin. Paperback, $12.

Starting in the 1950s and continuing until Baba dropped His body, Mani, at Baba's order, wrote The Family Letters. These beautifully

written, chatty, informative letters were sent out to group heads around the world and kept Baba lovers updated on the latest happenings with Baba. Also $12. We have two videos featuring Mani alone. The longer one is called Welcome To My World. In this video, Mani shows us in great detail Baba's hand gestures, and with her powerful sense of mimicry, you can almost believe it is Baba. She also tells us about one of Baba's favorite western songs, Welcome To My World, sung by Jim Reeves. Then, to the music, she does the hand gestures that Baba would use to 'sing' it to His mandali, making sure they listened to it over and over again. One hour, $20 The second one, Mani in Meherazad Garden, is a delightful retelling of her life with Baba, from her childhood up to fully fledged mandali. There are many amusing incidents along the way, told in her inimitable style. This is a 35 minute video recorded in 1982. $30 Finally, if you would like your own 9" X 12" photo of Mehera and Mani in the intimate moment Win Coates so beautifully captured on our back page, it's yours for only $20.

I

f you have misplaced or given away your catalog, drop me a line or call me evenings at (310) 837-6419 and ask for another copy. Don't wait for the new one! We have to go through a lot before that comes out. Center group heads, I will be happy to send you a pack of catalogs and Love Street LampPosts to have at meetings if you would like. Just in case, that is, that there are actually Baba lovers who do not yet receive this magazine!! I will be in India for the last three weeks of this month (October), so hope to see a number of you there. For those who can't make it there, I'll see you in the Bookstore.


Center Report by Michael Ramsden

H

ow can any year be normal in which God's sister leaves us to join her Beloved? We strive to honor her by proceeding with our business, remembering her as an example of a consummate server and worker for her Beloved. In this last quarter the board of directors has focused on the usual center activities. Currently, we are working to: •

dinner auction, and the Fly-toIndia sweepstakes. • •

Fund Center activity for the final four months of 1996 and the first four months of 1997. We will have a pledge drive in the immediate future, followed by a yard sale, •

Remember the Trust Avatar Meher Baba has given us an extraordinary privilege to allow us to participate in His very special Trust work. Meher Baba tells us that He is the Personage by whom serving we serve the whole universe ! Baba Himself established the Trusttocan-yout His wishes once He dropped the body. The Trust supports beneficiaries named by Baba, as well as funding the many charitable operations at Meherabad. If you wish to contribute to this most worthy of causes-Baba's Trustplease make your checks payable 'to "Friends of the Meher Baba Trust," and forward to Lynne Berry, 267 Hanover Drive, Costa Mesa, CA 92626; her phone number is (714) 966 -1262.

• •

Revisit options for raising capital for our move to a new site. Nominate candidates to four board positions for 1997-1998. The nominations will be made by the Nominating Committee. Mail updated bookstore catalogues and the Love Street LampPost to over one thousand potential subscribers. Our loving thanks to Meherana and the Oregon group for their cooperation, their support, and the use of their mailing lists. Fund the publishing of Filis Frederick's book of poetry, Light on Running Water. A big loving thank you to Mary Lloyd Dugan for her production efforts over the last few years. The book is being printed now and will be ready for distribution in November. In accordance with the recommendations of the Long-range Planning Committee, revise the by-laws concerning the terms and responsibilities of the Nominating Committee, the structure of the board of directors, and the directors' responsibilities. Finalize our accounting and budget planning and reporting system. Make the Center as comfortable as possible for all, until our move to a new site.

Unfortunately, this report will not be complete until I advise all our members that funding for Center activities and operating expenses is at an all-time low. Your support is

urgently needed. May I remind you that you need not wait for the pledge drive to make a donation! Our loving thanks to our Sahavas guests, Hoshang and Havovi Dadachanji, Irwin and Janet Luck, and Debbie Nordeen. Avatar Meher Baba ki Jai!

Fundraisers November 16

Dinner. Auction! Our annual event promises to be as elegant as ever. We will return this year to the home of Pat Griffin. The Still Yet More ChambefPlayers will contribute to the ambience. Fred will liven things up as auctioneer. Expect your invitations in the mail soon. If you do not receive one, or you would like to donate something, please contact 'Wendy Ward by leaving your name and number at the Center.

Mehermas Sweepstakes The drawing this year will take place at the Genter on December 21st. Watch for your tickets in the mail. Don't miss this year's opportunity to win a flight home to Baba's samadhi.


The Subject Tonight Is Love 60 Wild and Sweet Poems of Hafiz Versions by Daniel Ladinsky reviewed by John Page

T

his is Dan's second volume of his renderings of Hafiz's poetry. Hafiz, who lived in Persia some six hundred years ago, was Meher Baba's favorite poet. Hafiz's poetry, which Beloved Baba termed "matchless," describes the Path of Love wherein human love is transformed into divine love and the lover unites with the Beloved. His poetry reveals the intricacies of the relationship between the lover and the Beloved and imbues the entire divine relationship with lightness, humor and joy! Baba also revealed that Hafiz became a Perfect Master after having broken his head at his master, Fariduddin Attar's, feet for decades. This new book of Hafiz's poetry is full of many intimate and sweet poems of Hafiz. Dan's gift is to take the often stilted translations of the original Persian poems and render them into simple, joyous and ecstatic verses for all to understand. Hafiz shows the ironies, as well as the joys of the return-path to the Creator. Hafiz's poetry is God speaking-as a man, companion, commiserator, Master, and friend. This second volume of Dan's renderings of Hafiz's poetry brings many new delicious morsels for us to savor; such as the sample to the right. This book offers you 60 fresh new meals-but they are meals that don't disappear after they've been eaten. Instead they reappear, more delectable and filling each time they are consumed! Paperback, 67 pages. Published by Pumpkin House Press. $10.

This Place Where You Are Right Now This place where you are right now God circled on a map for you. Wherever your eyes and arms and heart can move Against the earth and sky, The Beloved has bowed there The Beloved has bowed there knowing You were coming. I could tell you a priceless secret about Your real worth, dear pilgrim, But any unkindness to yourself, Any confusion about others, Will keep one From accepting the grace, the love, The sublime freedom Divine knowledge always offers to you. Never mind, HafiZ, about The great requirements this path demands Of the wayfarers, For your soul is too full of wine tonight To withhold the wondrous Truth from this world. But because I am so happy and generous, I have already clearly woven a resplendent lock Of His tresses As a remarkable truth and gift In this poem for you.

r


Saturday Meetings

October 5

November 23

Hafiz

Annual General Meeting

Readings and discussion of one of Baba's favorites, the 14th century Persian poet. Hosted by Mahoo Ghorbani.

Tonight we elect S new members to the Board of Directors for 1997 and 199k. Reports on all Center activities for 1996 will be presented. All are welcome to attend, but only members may vote.

October 12

Baba World News (BWN) Discussion of news from Baba communities around the world. Coordinated by our own reporter, Marc Brutus.

October 19

November 30

Fil1nNight Treasure gems from our collection of films and videos. Gaze at Meher Baba's beautiful form. Coordinated by Charlie Morton.

Arti An evening of prayers, songs of devotion, and other expressions of love for Meher Baba. Bring music and poetry to share.

All e<oents, unless otherwise noted, are held at the Cen.te1"; 10808 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, (310) 474-9454. Meetings arefree and open to the public. Refreshments and flowers are always welc01ne.

If you have ideas or requests for jilture progrmlls, contact Richard Stenner at (310) 208-4764. Ijyou wish to present music or art, contact the host listedfor the meeting that interests you, or Richard. All are invited to share.

December 7

A Night of Dance

Farsi Meetings

Film Night

Come dance to the strains of Eastern & Western music. Musicians wanted. Call Richard Stermer.

Press Meher Baba's image into your heart. Coordinated by Charlie Morton.

December 14

Saturday evening discussions in Farsi about Meher Baba. All are welcome. Prayers and arti at the end of the meeting.

"Life is a mighty joke"

Coordinated by Dr. Mahmoud Ajang.

October 26

-Meher Baba November 2

Bill & Diana LePage Visit Join us for an evening with members of our Australian Baba family. Stories, news and informal visiting are always on the schedule when these two residents of Avatars Abode are in town.

November 9th

Gutta Night Freddy & GiGi, hosts par excellence, preside over what always proves to be a wonderful evening of sharing in the spirit of the divine Beloved. Refreshments will be served.

November 16

Special Event! Fund raiser dinner and auction. Contribute to the fun at this annual event which helps keep our Center dancing to Baba's tune. Please call Wendy Ward immediately with your auction contributions.

Bring a story that reflects Baba's divine sense of humor at work in our lives. Let's laugh at ourselves with the Godman!

December 21

Mehera S Birthday Celebration "She is closer to me than my own breath," said Baba of Mehera. Come to an evening devoted to remembering the Beloved's beloved.

December 23 Monday at 7:00p.M.

Christmas ce ebration Come and celebrate the birth of the Godman as Jesus in a traditional Christmas celebration with food, song and gift exchange (bring a small gift if you like). You may also bring canned food and used clothing for distribution to the poor.

December 28

Film Night This evening features the greatest star in movies-Avatar Meher Baba. Coordinated by Charlie Morton.

These meetings begin at 6:00p.M. Oct. 5 Nov. 2 Dec. 14 19 16 28 30

Wednesday Meetings Drop in to drink the nectar of Meher Baba's divine love. Reading and discussion路 of Lord Meher, by Bhau Kalchuri. These meetings begin at 7:30p.M. There will be no meeting on Christmas or New Year's Day.

Saba on Televjsion Phe .Toddy Shop Presented and produced by our own incomparable Fred "St. Francis" Stankus. Thursday, Oct. 3, 9:00p.M. Century Cable TV


A Final Note Invitation to Participate This issue is a choir's song to Baba. All the voices heard and all the financial support given are expressions of love to the Beloved. Let's do it again!

II Contribute Baba touches us in ways that are deeply personal, and sharing the love we are given is important. Retelling a story is one more way to rememher Him. Also, listening to the unity of

Photograph Credits Page

Photographer or Owner

cover

Georgeann Erskine

inside cover back cover - above below inside back cover page 11 12 15 18 21 22 Center pages: A - above below B - all C - all D - all

page 24 25 26 27 27 28 29 30 31 33 - top left top right bottom right bottom left 34 -left right 35 36 39

AMBC of SC Win Coates Win Coates Dina Snow Hermes Reiter Hermes Reiter John Page Hermes Reiter Bruce Ecker Dave Lowman

Location & Date

August, 1990 (please see description on page 3) Amartithi, 1973 Mehera's Birthday, 1987 Baba's Birthday, 1982 Meherazad, circa 1993 Meherazad, 1944 Meherabad, 1934 in front of East Room Meherabad, 1993 Mandali Hall 1978 Mandali Hall, 1987

Dina Snow Peter Ravazza John Page John Page John Page Pamela Wolfe Louise Barrie Nancy Wall Dina Snow detail of above photo Dina Snow Michael Ivey Bevan Eaton AMBC of SC Margaret Magnus Ray Lee John Page Betty Lowman Hermes Reiter Mahoo Ghorbani Mahoo Ghorbani Peter Ravazza Dina Snow

Meherazad Garden, 1976 Myrtle Beach, 1952 circa 1993 circa 1993 Meherabad, circa 1994 Mehera's porch, 1996 Meherabad, 1990 1979 Meherazad, circa 1970 circa 1950 December, 1994 Guruprasad, Great Darshan, 1969 1992 summer, 1995 1993 1987 1927 1996 1996 circa 1950 Mehera's Porch, 1994

love for Baba within the diversity of our experiences strengthens our family bonds. No matter where you live in the world, your voice can join this choir's song to Baba. Share your art, anecdotes and stories of how Meher Baba is active in your life, or how you are active in remembering Baba. These can be life-changing events or simple ones, stories as long as a page or as short as a paragraph. For our forthcoming issue, we especially welcome contributions related to the topic of prayer. \Ve ask that all submissions be about Meher Baba or your relationship with Him. \Ve are looking for personal experiences. As in most publications, submissions may be edited. Please read the frontispiece on the table of contents page for details.

Support To produce the Love Street LampPost requires paper, printing and postage. At this writing, we have no funds to cover these costs for the next issue. Please consider the value of this magazine to yourself and to others when you weigh how to spend the earnings from your everyday life. We have spent everything in our account; without donations there will be no next issue. Thanks again to all who have contributed to this special issue. Contributions of words and dollars-it could not have been done without all of you. Let's continue to join hands and sing to Avatar Meher Baba!

A _ _v_a_ta_T_M=e_h_e....T=B_a....b_a.-=-ki....路....J....a.... i !w-=~r_


Profile for AMBCSC ARCHIVES PRINT LIBRARIES

LOVE STREET LAMP POST 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Qtr 1996  

AMBCSC ARCHIVES RARE PRINT LITERATURE PUBLICATION Printed and Published by Avatar Meher Baba Center of Southern California Archives. This...

LOVE STREET LAMP POST 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Qtr 1996  

AMBCSC ARCHIVES RARE PRINT LITERATURE PUBLICATION Printed and Published by Avatar Meher Baba Center of Southern California Archives. This...

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