STORIES AND SIMILES BY
AVATAR MEHER BABA
01-A GREAT OBEDIENCE
A certain Perfect Master had one disciple whose loving obedience was remarkable. He, without hesitation or questioning, would attempt and fulfill the most difficult orders quite simply and with no fuss.
One day the Master almost casually told this man that he must return to his home, kill his young son, and then return to his Master.
Without argument, hesitation, or any sign of refusal he did exactly that.
Upon his return, he found his Master smiling and happy, and standing beside him, well and unharmed, was the disciple's supposedly dead young son.
Master demands implicit obedience without any question of why and what.
02-A MIGHTY JOKE TO ME
Meher Baba in his discourses said:
You, as gross body, are born again and again till you realize your Real Self. You, as mind, are born only once and die only once; in this sense you do not re-incarnate. The gross body keeps changing, but mind (mental body) remains the same throughout. All impressions (sanskaras) are stored in the mind. The impressions are either to be spent or counteracted through fresh karma in successive incarnations. Buddha's wheel denotes the cycle of births and deaths. The wheel goes on in its ceaseless round. It lifts you to the heights; it brings you down to the depths.
To show you how karma persists as a connecting link and a life-determining factor of future lives I give you an example. There is a king who has vast possessions. But he is a worthless king. He spends all his energy and money in selfish pursuits and luxuries and has no care for his subjects. In his next birth he is born blind and becomes a beggar and thus compensates for his wrong doings.
Now this king has a servant who is honest and faithful and hard-working. In his next birth because of his merits he is born into a cultured and well-to-do family. One day, when he is going along the street he hears a pitiable cry from the pavement. It is from the blind beggar who was the king in his previous life crying aloud with outstretched hands, Have pity. Give me a penny in the name of the Lord. And because all actions however trivial, are inwardly determined by the Sanskaric ties, creating claims and counter-claims, the rich man is unconsciously drawn towards the beggar and gives him a few copper coins.
A king crying out for alms and a servant taking pity on him — what a comedy, what an irony of fate! This is the working of the law of karma, the expression of justice in the world of values. The law of karma is impartial and inexorable. It knows no concessions, gives no preferences, and makes no exceptions. It dispenses justice.
By the divine law you are shielded from remembrance of past lives, for it would not help you in living your present life but would make it infinitely more complicated and confusing.
For me "past" does not exist. I live in the Eternal Present. I clearly see your former lives, with all your intimate and intricate relationships with so many individuals. Your various reactions to others seen in the context of your mutual connections in previous lives serves as a mighty joke to Me and helps to ease My burden of suffering.
Now, I give you another example. It is not an uncommon happening. A Moslem after death is buried in a graveyard. After a few incarnations he is born again a Moslem family in the same town. It is customary among Moslems to offer prayers for the dead when they visit graves, to pray to God Almighty to save the departed ones. And so it happens that this person stands before his own grave and solemnly prays, "May God save his soul!" What an absurdity! How pathetic!
Law of Karma is impartial. One has to counter experience for his good or bad actions. One is ignorant of actions or experience of past life.
There was once a Perfect Master who was walking along a rough country path which wound its way between and under trees of many varieties. The Master came upon a man seated under one of the trees in the act of meditation.
The man, becoming aware of such a strong spiritual presence, opened his eyes. He immediately reacted to this advanced being with a cry of, "Oh, Master, will you tell me how many more lives I must pass through before realizing God?"
The Master looked at him and replied, "It will be four more lives before you reach your goal." The yogi reacted badly to this, complaining that it was too long; especially as he was working so hard to obtain his freedom.
The Master then continued his walk through the trees. After a time he came across another yogi who also opened his eyes and asked the same question as to the amount of time that must pass before he would receive God-realization.
On being told that he had about 300 more years before this longed-for event, he also grumbled, but was not as aggressive as the first yogi had been.
Again the Master walked on, and again a meditating yogi asked the same question.
The Master looked at the tree under which the man was sitting, and saw that it was covered with thousands of small leaves and then replied, "You will have as many lives as there are leaves on this tree."
The yogi reacted by joyfully saying, "Oh, thank you Master, thank you; it is such a wonderfully short time."
Immediately at such submission to the will of God, this yogi received the longed-for realization.
A great deal of patience is required for God-realisation.
(Still Dancing with Love, pp. 7-8, Margaret Craske, 1990 © sheriar press, inc).
04-ALL EXISTENCE IS WITHIN YOU (SIMILE)
An ant was trying to cross a stream on a leaf. Tossed by the wind, the leaf overturned in midstream and the ant cried, "Help, help, the world is drowning."
A frog close by said, “What rubbish! The world is not drowning, you mean YOU are drowning."
"Well," said the ant, "once I drown the world might as well not exist for me, so for me it means not only that I am drowning but that the world is drowning too!"
In the same way, all existence is within you. God is to be found within yourself, and once you find Him you have found the only treasure worth finding. I give you my blessing that you may love God and find Him.
God is within and can be found within by oneself with the help of a Master.
(Life at its best, pp. 47-48, ed. Ivy O. Duce, 1957 © Sufism Reoriented, Inc.)
05-AS LONG AS WORLDLY ATTRACTIONS LAST, THERE IS NO HOPE!
In Panchgani, the men and women mandali had been instructed to meditate according to Baba’s order. Some were having thoughts as to why they had not yet realized God, despite serving Baba for so many years.
Baba narrated to them a story about a Sadguru in answer to their unspoken question:
A disciple used to always ask his Master why he could not realize God, in view of the fact that he had served him so faithfully for so long. The Sadguru continued telling him to have patience, and the disciple, in his eagerness, kept pestering him.
One day, a fair was held in a nearby village. The Sadguru told his disciple, “Go to the fair with a cup of milk in your hand, and return with the cup still full. Then you will be One with God!”
So the disciple, thinking it an easy thing, did as he was told. But when he reached the fair he was so engrossed with the alluring sights around him, he forgot about God-Realization. He pushed through the crowds, so as not to miss seeing anything, all the while spilling the milk. When he came back to his Master’s residence, no milk was left in the cup.
Seeing him approach, the Master said, “Now, according to my promise, I will give you God-Realization; but let me first see the cup.” The disciple was ashamed, and confessed that all the milk was lost amidst the wonderful carnival.
The Sadguru said, “What can I do now? You were attracted by worldly allurements and forgot my order. Had you real desire for attaining God, you would not have been caught napping, and tried your best to save the milk. But you were ensnared by filthy things of the world which bind you, so how could you long for God?”
The disciple then realized that, despite years of service to the Master, as long as worldly attractions last, there is no hope!
As long as worldly attractions last, there is no hope of God- realisation
06-BALANCING OF SANSKARAS
Baba explained sanskaras must balance perfectly. This cannot be done by a mathematical process, or it would be easy. Good and bad sanskaras are both bindings. If you have good sanskaras, you may take birth as a great, rich man; with bad sanskaras, you may be born as a miserable leper, and so on. But you cannot get freedom without a Master. You do not know how many bad sanskaras you have, and how many good ones you need. But the Perfect Master knows, and he will work with you to balance them.
Once, when Buddha was not yet unveiled, God-conscious, after He had renounced his kingdom, wife and child, and had gone into the forest, where He remained doing penance and fasting, He encountered an old woman who was advanced on the Path. She told Him that He was bound more than ever before! Before, they were fetters of iron, now they were of gold, but both were binding, all the same. Then, she told Him the secret.
Good and bad are mere terms. Hitler sincerely thinks he is doing good, and the world thinks he is doing bad! What is good for him is bad for the world. Good and bad are just man-made expressions. Real freedom can only be obtained when you give up all desires. You have to renounce them all to attain freedom.
Returning to the subject of sanskaras, Baba recounted this true story:
There was a man who was a great murderer. In his life, he murdered ninety-nine people. One day, he felt very depressed and sick of it all. So he went to the Buddha, and frankly and openly confessed before him all his crimes, adding that he was feeling most dejected and wanted to end it all. The Buddha told him to go and sit by the side of a certain road and think of him. The murderer did so. Years passed.
One day, while he was sitting there thinking of the Buddha, a rider came by, stopped before him and told him to move aside. The man refused, and the rider started lashing him with his whip. Instantly, reverting back to his old ways, the man pulled the rider from his horse and stabbed him! He killed him. However, at that very moment the man realized God!
The rider was carrying on his person a message from one king to another ordering the death of one hundred spies. By saving the exact number of lives that he had murdered, his good and bad sanskaras balanced. The man, of course, did not know all this, and was only thus saved by the Buddha, because the Master knew. Therefore, if you obey implicitly and unquestioningly, you win, because whereas your conception is limited, the Master knows all, and gives you just what is best for you.
On another occasion, Meher Baba explained that an old woman unveiled Gautama the Buddha by giving him pudding to eat after his many months of fasting. That old woman, a Sadguru, played the same role as Hazrat Babajan did for Merwan.
Only Master knows about quantum of one’s good and bad sanskaras and gives what is best to counter balance one’s sanskaras.
07-BEWARE (A PARABLE)
I want to give a loving warning to all those who love Me that they should be very watchful about their grip on My daaman, particularly during this phase of helplessness and humiliation. They should not keep their fidelity towards Me a secret for fear of impending circumstances and they should guard all first moments lest they may unknowingly be taken astray. May they not fail in facing the challenge offered unawares by trying circumstances?
There was an innocent, pure-hearted widow who with simple faith in God, decided to pass her life in His remembrance. Being beautiful, she received many offers of marriage, all of which she refused including that from the king. So in a rage, the king declared that she was an unchaste woman and had her tied with ropes before the palace gate. The order was issued that all those who passed her must abuse and stone her.
It so happened that this widow had a daughter who had to pass the place where her mother was tied, but being fearful of royal wrath, the daughter just moved her lips and threw a flower at her mother. The widow felt this deeply and said, "Dear child, the mere movement of your lips and the most gentle touch of the flower has caused a deeper wound in my heart than the bleeding wounds caused by the stones hurled at me."
So beware. Be honest in the expression of your faith in Me and I am ever with you to help.
A slight derogatory remark by close disciple casts more pains to his Master than any other seeker.
(The Ancient One, p. 178, ed. Naosherwan Anzar, 1981 © Glow International
08-BONES FLESH AND BRAIN (SIMILI)
The scriptures are like rotten bones rotted and are as food for worms. Theosophy and philosophy are like good bones rotted and are as food for vultures.
The writings of inspired poets are like fresh bones and are as food for dogs. The writings of spiritually advanced saints are like flesh and are as food for tigers. The writings by living Perfect Masters are like brain and are as food for men!
Good bones when rotted have some semblance of bone, but rotten bones when rotted are like filth.
So, you may go through the scriptures superficially – only to drive away the barking dogs when necessary; for instance, when you are called upon to answer the queries of the priests and the orthodox.
One should read the literature given by Avatar and Perfect Masters. These are real food for thought and worth to be read by aspirants. God Speaks and discourses by Avatar Meher Baba are unparallel to any past scripture and must be read by any spiritual seeker.
09-CASHIER IN BANK
One day, a man came into a bank and was watching the cashier. The cashier, very much absorbed in counting the money in order to keep proper accounts, did not notice the person watching him. After a while, the man left.
One evening, this man went to call on cashier at home. Although the cashier did not know him, he let the man inside and asked what he wanted. The man said, “You are very rich, and I need your help.”
The cashier was surprised to hear that this man thought he was wealthy and said, “I am not wealthy. Whatever I get is by way of salary to support my wife and children.”
And the man said to him, “But that day in the bank, I saw you were absorbed in counting the money that you did not even notice me watching you. Now you tell me that you are not wealthy? You must be the owner of the bank. No one could be so absorbed in counting like that if money were not their own.
At this, the cashier laughed, and said, “Honestly, I tell you that the money you saw me count does not belong to me. It belongs to bank. I only work there. My duty is to count the money properly and keep a proper account. When I am in the bank, I do this work with complete concentration. But when I come back home, I forget about the work, because I know that money does not belong to me. I do the work in the bank according to the duty that is given to me. Then I am free of my duty when I leave at night.
Avatar Meher Baba wants us to live in the world like the cashier of a bank, who counts money the whole day, keeps account but at the same time, he remains detached, knowing fully well that money does not belong to him.
(Spiritual training programme –Bhau Kalchuri ed. 2005 pp-64-65)
10-CURSED OR BLESSED
A Sadguru once set out with his disciples for begging. He approached a rich merchant, who instead of giving alms, shouted abuses and obscenities. Nevertheless, the Sadguru blessed him, saying, ‘Your profits will double.’
The Sadguru then approached another wealthier merchant, who mistreated him even more badly. He, however, blessed this man, saying, ‘Your profits will quadruple.’
Then the Sadguru, with his disciples, approached the shop of a poor old man, who received them with reverence, and offered whatever he could provide from his meager store. The old shopkeeper had only one son, whom he loved dearly. Before leaving, the Sadguru cursed him: ‘By the power of God, I pray that your son dies soon.’ The next day the son was found dead.
When the Sadguru’s disciples found this out, they were bewildered by their Master’s behavior. The only man who had received them with humble reverence had been cursed, not blessed.
Afterward, the Sadguru explained: ‘Both merchants were immersed in the mire of worldliness, and did not want to be extricated. For that reason, I had to submerge them even more in the mire of the world by My blessings, so that one day they will cry to be pulled out. The poor shopkeeper was spiritually inclined. However his love for his son was much too binding. It was an obstruction to the old man’s progress on the Path. The son was, unknowingly, a thorn in his father’s side, and so I opened the door to the Path by removing his son. Now you tell me, who was blessed and who was cursed?’
Suffering is blessings in disguise from the Master.
(April-1922, Poona, to His men Mandali, Lord Meher vol. 2 p-361-362)
11-DAULAT SINGH IS A GEM.
Daulat Singh had spread Meher Baba's name in Srinagar well, and was eager for His darshan.
Baba praised him, and in the midst of talking with everyone observed, "Daulat Singh is a gem!"
The recluse replied with a knowing smile, "He is a gem, but he is still worldly. He has not yet renounced the world."
Baba just smiled and did not comment. After a while asked, "I remember a story. Would you like to hear it?" All expressed their eagerness and Baba's fingers flew across the alphabet board, which Vishnu read:
A man renounced the world and was passing his time in meditation, solitude, repeating God's name, and so forth, and also visiting different saints and mahatmas. Years passed by like this. Once he had the luck to encounter a Perfect Master. He prayed to him for God-Realization, and the Sadguru told him to stay with him in his ashram.
The Master also had other followers who were living under his orders. There was no spiritual practice of any sort in the ashram and he thought all the others there were useless, as he did not observe them doing anything spiritual. Some were cooking, some were washing, some were cleaning and thus, according to the words of the Master, keeping themselves busy.
Although now living with the Perfect Master, the sanyasi had continued his spiritual practices and become a recluse. One day he asked the Master, "When will I see God?"
The Master replied, "If you act according to my orders, you will gain the sight of God very soon." The recluse nodded in accord. The Master, picking up a small piece of stone, then told him, "Go to the market and, in exchange for this, bring five seers (cup measurements) of vegetables."
Looking at the stone, the recluse replied, "Master, this is a stone. Who will give five seers of vegetables in exchange for it? No one will touch it."
The Master said, "You have promised to obey me and now you are arguing. If you do as I say, you will have God's darshan."
The recluse went to the market, but no vendor was ready to agree to the bargain, and all laughed in derision. With great difficulty, one agreed to give him two seers of vegetables. Refusing, the recluse returned and said to the Master, "Master, I had told you from the beginning the exchange was foolhardy. Who would give five seers of vegetables for a stone? I could get nothing."
The Master said, "Now go to a sweetmeat shop and bring five seers of sweets for this piece of stone." The recluse left thinking his Master deranged. No one was willing to give five seers of sweets and the most he could argue for in one shop was three seers. So he returned, again empty-handed.
The Master then directed him to approach a goldsmith and bade him to bring back not less than five thousand rupees in exchange. Now the recluse was convinced the Master was completely crazy, but he went anyway.
The goldsmith examined the rock and announced that he was ready to pay one thousand rupees. This surprised the recluse as now he was being offered a thousand rupees in exchange for a stone against which previously he could not even get five seers of vegetables. He then thought the Sadguru knew what he was doing and there was something more to it than met his eye. He returned to the Master and told him what had transpired. The Master next asked him to go to a jeweler and sell the stone for one hundred thousand rupees. So he went and the jeweler agreed to the sale and paid him the amount. The recluse brought the money and the Master told him, "You did not value the stone, but the jeweler knew its true value. He knew that it was in fact a diamond. Only a jeweler's eye could recognize the stone's genuine worth.
"The vegetable vendors, the sweetmeat shopkeepers, the goldsmiths – all are like those who are veiled; they can only evaluate things according to their consciousness."
The Master then told the recluse: "I am the Jeweler and I know the capacities and capabilities of those around me. They act according to my wish, leaving their own aside. Those who reside with the Jeweler are truly spiritual. Whomever you have approached in your years of wandering until now have all been like vegetable sellers, shopkeepers and goldsmiths – limited by their own limited viewpoint. So, it is better to remain with the Jeweler who knows your true worth and who, in time, will make you a Jeweler like himself." In this manner the recluse was convinced and held fast to the Master's feet.
One’s present, past and future is open book for a Master. He only knows when and what is best suited to one.
(Lord Meher, 1st. ed., Bhau Kalchuri, Vol. 8, pp. 2975 – 2977)
12-DIFFERENCES BETWEEN THE POWERS OF A GOD-REALIZED MASTER AND A YOGI.
Divine miracles are generally attributed to Avatars, Sadgurus, or Realized human beings, while occult powers belong to yogis. The former is the outcome of extremely high and unselfish motives, while for the latter the mainspring is invariably the worst kind of selfishness. An Avatar or Sadguru performs miracles when He intends to give a general push to the world toward spirituality, but a yogi generally enacts his supernatural powers to serve his own ends.
For example, a child is tightly holding a parrot by the neck to the point of strangling it. Now in order to save the bird’s life it will not be advisable to try to snatch it from the hands of its young captor because there is the chance of his tightening his grasp. The child must therefore be offered a coin, which will make him let go of his hold on the parrot. In this instance, the offering of the coin means performing a miracle, and saving the parrot from the child’s grip means saving the mind from ignorance and Maya’s grip. Such is the way of Avatars and Sadgurus. However, if a yogi sees a very beautiful woman and desires her, he will materialize gold jewellery in order to attract her. It is evident that there is a world of difference between the motives involved in both these actions.
To give another example, a man has put on spectacles of white glass which make him see everything white, though in reality all things are colorless. A yogi’s powers consist in putting red or green spectacles before the man’s eyes, and to the man’s amazement everything appears red or green. A Sadguru, knowing that everything has no colour, not even white, and that everything is nothing, does not believe in wasting time over changing the colour of glasses. He works toward removing a man’s spectacles that he is wearing, thereby enabling a person to see things as they are; however, the yogi only adds to the illusion which a person sees by putting yet another pair of glasses before his eyes.
Avatar or Sadguru performs miracles for benefit of humanity but yogi for his personal gain. Avatar or Sadguru removes illusion but yogi adds to it.
(Lord Meher, 1st. ed., Bhau Kalchuri, Vol 3, p. 958)
13-DISCOURSES TO THE CHILDREN
Meher Baba gave discourses to the children, often using similes and analogies to illustrate his points.
On December 18th 1927, Baba brought out a doll and explained the progression of evolution. Bending the head of the doll downward and folding all its limbs inside, Baba stated, “This is the state of inanimate objects in the world, such as stones, rocks and minerals. Life is there but it is curled up like the doll and you cannot see it. Everything is latent.”
Unfolding the doll’s arms and legs, Baba pointed the legs toward the sky and explained, “This is the state of the soul in the plant form. Its mouth is at the roots and its legs or branches are in the sky.” Baba brought the legs down and placed the doll on all fours, indicating that the doll was now in the animal form. Finally, Baba made the doll stand on its two legs and explained,
“The soul has now reached the state of a human being – this is the final and highest form.”
To illustrate the working of sanskaras, Baba one day took a mirror out of His coat pocket and explained:
Suppose this mirror represents the mind’s sanskaras while Chaitanya is Unconscious Consciousness. Now the moment Chaitanya is created in the unconscious mind, it arouses the sound sleep state of God to know its Self. Also at that moment sanskaras begin. The mirror, which was placed aside, now begins to move toward the eyes.
Drawing a diagram on the chalk board to illustrate His point, Baba continued:
One of the first movements of consciousness takes the mirror to the stone forms where only a corner of the mirror falls within the boundary of one’s vision. The next movement, to the vegetable form, brings a greater area of the mirror within sight. The next, to the worm, fish, bird and animal kingdoms, brings a still greater area into view. Then the final movement, toward the human form, brings the entire area of the mirror before the eyes and one sees his own reflection therein and believes the reflection – the shadow of the Self – to be the Real Self or I, which is not true.
So the mirror, which was slanted with the evolution of forms, is slowly brought upright with heightened consciousness. But the soul, instead of seeing itself inside and toward its own body, sees into the reflection in the mirror and what it sees is illusion
So what should it do now to see the Self? It must remove the mirror; not only remove it, but destroy it! That is, one must destroy the sanskaras which create illusion. If you do not destroy them, they remain as they are and present themselves again and again whenever you take birth. For example, the mirror is there, even when you have left bodies after bodies and taken another. Therefore, remove this mirror of sanskaras and see your own Real Self.
Avatar Meher Baba, through the example of doll and mirror explained evolution and involution to children and grown-ups.
(Lord Meher, 1st. ed., Bhau Kalchuri, Vol. 3, pp. 976 – 977.)
One day, a refugee from Pakistan who wanted to see Beloved Baba. He had lost everything and traveled to India along with his family. In Dehra Dun, he came to know about Beloved Meher Baba and would go to the Meher Baba Centre there. One day, he mentioned his plight to one of the Baba lovers, and that he had nothing. "I am a mechanic, and I want to open a workshop. But I have no money. Is there a Baba lover who can help me?"
The Baba lover replied, "Yes, there is one man, a nice person and very kind. He may help you.” And he gave the address of the potential helper to the refugee.
The refugee went to the man's home, and when the man heard of his guest’s plight, he asked, "How much do you want?"
"If you give me 5,000 rupees, that will be sufficient to open a workshop," the refugee replied. "I assure you that I will return your money as soon as possible, along with any interest."
And the man said, "Interest? You are a Baba lover. I don't charge interest to Baba lovers!”
The refugee was amazed and said, "Please take this down in writing, regarding the money you have given to me."
"What are you talking about? I have full faith in you. I trust you. You are a Baba lover, and therefore there is no need for me to put anything into writing. Please open your workshop. Whenever it is possible for you, return the money to me, without any interest."
The refugee was very impressed. He thought, "Indeed, there are kind people in the world. I have encountered so many difficulties. I had to leave Pakistan because of harassment. But now, how kind Beloved Baba is to arrange such a deal for me."
The refugee opened his workshop, repairing cars, motorcycles and other vehicles. Because he was an excellent mechanic, his shop was soon running very well, and he earned good money.
Within a few months, he returned the loan. And then what happened?
When the refugee met the person who had given him the loan, the latter asked, “How is your workshop going?”
"Because of Beloved Baba's grace, it is earning very well," the refugee told him.
"Since the earning is good, when are you going to return my money?"
The refugee thought that the man was joking. He said, "Did you forget? The first thing I did was to return your money to you?"
"What are you talking about?" the other responded. "I am not cutting a joke. I am telling you the truth. You have not returned my money, and I want you to return it as soon as possible!"
The refugee could not understand this. He had been very much impressed because of the man's kind help, but now he was in trouble. He told Kishan Singh, who, in turn, told Baba. "All right,
Baba said, “Call that refugee.” which Kishan Singh did.
When the refugee came to Baba, Baba asked him, "What is the matter?"
The refugee told the whole story.
Baba asked, "When the man gave you money, did he take anything down in writing?”
"No, Baba," the refugee replied. "He did not take anything in writing from me.”
Baba said to him, "But there must be some witnesses?"
"No, Baba, there was no one. The man was in a field, so I went there. We both were sitting under a tree. Then I gave him the money."
Baba heard this and asked him to call that man who had loaned him the money. So the refugee brought him and Baba asked, “Did you give this refugee 5,000 rupees?’
And he said, “Yes, Baba.”
“Did he return it?” Baba asked.
"Why did you not take it down in writing when you gave him the money?"
"I trusted him because he was a Baba lover."
Then Baba asked the refugee, "You don't have any witnesses?"
"No, Baba. We both were sitting under a tree in the field when I gave him the money.”
So Baba said, "Then the tree is a witness! Go and call that tree."
The refugee was just looking at Baba - he could not believe what Baba had just said.
"Did you not hear?" Baba said. "I just want you to go to that tree and call it here.”
The refugee asked, "How will the tree come here, Baba?"
Baba replied, "This is My order. Go and tell the tree, and it will come."
So the refugee left. The man who loaned the money remained sitting there, and Baba started attending to other work. After two hours Baba asked, "That refugee has not yet come? How long should I wait for him?’
"Baba, that tree is far off," the man answered. "He will take another two hours to come back.”
Immediately, Baba said, "How did you come to know that the tree was that far off?”
The man was caught. He said to Baba, "Baba, please forgive me. He did return the money to me, but I played mischief. Please forgive me.”
And Baba said to him, "Never deceive anyone. You take yourself as a Baba lover? Are you a lover? You must be honest. What a sin you are committing! Stop doing such things. Never in your life do it again. Do you think I don't know? I know everything! I see everything, every moment. Nothing remains hidden from Me.”
Then Baba added, "You speak a lie, and you can hide it from others, but can you hide it from yourself? You know that you spoke a lie. I am thousands of times closer than your very breath. So when you cannot hide a lie from yourself, how can you hide it from Me? Remember this and never repeat such things. I forgive you now, but never play such mischief on anyone."
Then the refugee returned, and Baba asked him, "Where is that tree?"
And he said, "Baba, I prayed and prayed to You before the tree. I told it that You wanted it to come to You. I bowed down to it 1000 times, but still the tree did not move.”
Baba told the refugee, "The tree had come here, and he gave witness! Ask this man.”
"Yes, Baba, the tree came here and gave witness," the man admitted. "I am really very sorry." Then he said to the refugee, "Please forgive me; I deceived you. You did return my money. I will not do such a thing anymore.”
Then the man turned to Baba and said, "Please, Baba, forgive me. I know You are All Knowing. You know everything, and nothing remains hidden from You. Henceforth I will be honest, and I will never deceive anyone.”
One cannot hide anything from God who is all knowing and omnipresent and omniscient.
15-DO AS I SAY
For relaxation, Baba would go to Munshi Ram’s house to play cards. Once, while playing cards at Munshi’s, he quietly stole a card from Ramjoo, and as a result his side won. In the middle of next game, Ghani did likewise; but this time Ramjoo saw it. He complained to Baba, who rebuked Ghani for cheating. Ghani for some time bitterly thought: “Meher Himself pilfers cards and then rebukes me for doing the same!”
After a while longer, Baba stopped the game and told the men a true story about a Perfect master:
One day a Sadguru went with some of his disciples to a city where he was known. He approached a candy shop and entering, put some sweets in his mouth. His disciples too, mimicked him in this respect. He then visited a bakery and there also the same thing happened. He picked up some cookies and put them in his mouth, and his disciples did the same. Then he went to a blacksmith’s shop where there were red hot pieces of iron in the furnace. The Master picked up one of the pieces and ate it.
Disciples stared at him. The Sadguru then said, “Now eat this too!”
Not one dared move and Master admonished, “Why did you did you do as I did? Are you parrots? Never do as I do. But do as I say.”
After hearing this tale, Ghani burst out laughing, and Baba asked the reason. He replied, “I bow down to your knowledge. You have answered my question superbly
One should not copy the actions of Master but obey Him.
16-DON'T BE A SLAVE TO MATERIAL HAPPINESS
Christmas was celebrated on the 25th, and that night they took a boat ride on the Narmada River. Baba dipped His hands in the water and posed as Rano took a photograph of Him. Gaimai wistfully observed, "How long the Narmada has awaited You, Baba." Baba just smiled.
After their return from the river, Baba said, "While we were on the boat I remembered a story about a Perfect Master." All the women eagerly requested him to tell it and so He began to spell out the tale:
There was once a Sadguru staying in a certain place with a few of his disciples. One night his mandali were conversing among themselves, saying that though they had stayed with the Master for the past so many years, still they had gained nothing. A Sadguru is all-knowing, and he of course knew what his disciples were talking about. But he did not say anything and appeared innocently unmindful of them.
The next day, all took their seats before the Master. He noticed they seemed to be in a sad mood. The Master inquired the reason, and they told him what was on their minds. He laughingly told them to be patient and, in a short time, had completely changed their remorseful mood into one of gaiety. All forgot their dejection.
Some days later the Sadguru told his disciples, "Don't do any work today and enjoy yourselves for a change. You have the whole day to yourselves, so eat, drink and be merry." This made them jubilant, and they spent the day happily playing cards, listening to music, reminiscing and joking with one another.
In the evening the Sadguru said, "We will go out in the boat tonight." This made his disciples even more happy and they said, "Master, it would be grand if you allowed us to take a little wine this evening." The Master readily agreed, and all drank and ate to their heart's content. They took their seats in the boat and continued playing cards, listening to music and enjoying themselves thoroughly. The Master told them to take turns rowing the boat by two. And so it went.
They were overjoyed to be allowed so much freedom, and after a few hours the Sadguru observed, "We have come a long distance and we won't be able to return before dawn."
The disciples said with bravado, as they were slightly tipsy by now, "However far we have proceeded, we will surely return home by morning; we will row even harder!" The Master did not say a word.
It was a moonlit night, and all got very drunk. Dawn began breaking over the horizon and the Master said, "Oh, it is morning now and we still have not returned home!" The intoxicating effects of the wine were wearing off by now, and they thought that they had come a long distance. But then, carefully observing their surroundings, they saw to their astonishment that they were where they had boarded the boat the night before! In their intoxication, instead of rowing the boat, they had stayed right where they had started from!
The Sadguru then commented, "The whole night you were rowing and rowing and I was also seated with you. But the boat did not move at all; you are where you were and have not gone a step further. What is the reason for this?"
One replied, "We were drunk and thought we were rowing the boat; in fact, it was tied to the dock all the time!"
The Master explained, "Because of your remaining absorbed in worldly enjoyment, you are exactly where you were. Although I was with you, what could I do when you were merged in material pleasures? In the same way, despite your being with me for years, instead of coming closer to me, you remain drowned in temporal pleasures. What do you expect to gain? How will you benefit by my contact? You will remain as you are!
"Therefore, don't be a slave to material happiness. Be my slaves and see what you gain without even asking!"
This made all remember their mood of dejection and they trusted and believed what their Master was saying was true.
Baba then explained to the women, "I am showing you beautiful sights, boat riding with you and taking you here and there. All this is to free you from material bondage. Doing all this, all the while I am attentive of whose mind is where, and when I interrupt you in your reveries with a view to free you, you take it ill and your mood is upset.
"If I do not behave like this, of what use would it be your remaining with Me for years together? Remember to focus your attention always on Me, even while enjoying things. Don't remain drowned in material pleasures. Don't give rein to your desires.
"Only love Me! When you love Me only, then in the intoxication of that love, you will find all physical pleasures lifeless."
Baba then teased them, "Those disciples believed faithfully in the word of their Master, but you are such types that in spite of My telling you this, you are eagerly waiting for Me to finish so you can all go and eat!" Everyone laughed.
As long as, one seeks material happiness or attached to worldly allurements, no spiritual progress can be achieved. One’s love for Master is must to get detached from worldly pleasures.
(Lord Meher, 1st. ed., Bhau Kalchuri, Vol. 7, pp. 2348 - 2352.)
17-FAITH IS TO BE CONNECTED WITH HEART
Meher Baba told following story to mandali.
Three were a husband and wife living in a village. At that time, the only way to travel anywhere was on foot. The wife’s parents would come from time to time to see their daughter. But her husband would not take the wife to see them, although each time her parents came, they would invite the couple to visit.
One day, the wife told her husband that her parents had always invited them whenever they came to their village. So she and her husband should go at least once to her parents. This time the husband agreed and so they decided to leave in the morning of the following day.
Her parents lived 20 miles away from their village, and in between, there was a forest. The husband and his wife thought that by evening they would have walked the 20 miles.
But what happened? When they reached in the middle of the forest, cloud covered the sky. It became dark. Soon it started raining very heavily. Even though his wife had begged her husband so often to make the journey to visit her parents, she now told him that they should return. But the husband knowing how much his wife has wanted to visit her parents explained that they had already crossed half of the forest. There was no sense in returning, because the same distance would have to be travelled. But the wife was afraid and could not hear what her husband was saying. She grabbed him and told that she only wanted to go back. The husband again tried to console her, but she would not listen.
Then the husband took a knife out of his own pocket and threatened to kill her. Upon seeing this, the wife only laughed. The husband told her how surprised he was to see that she could only laugh when he was about to kill her. And the wife said that she knew he loved her very much. How could he kill her? She was confident that he was just scaring her. She had full faith in him that he could not do such a thing.
Then the husband told his wife, “I am threatening to kill you with this knife. But you are laughing, because you know that I love you and because you have faith in me, you know I will not kill you. So why not have the same faith in God? We are all His children, and He is our father, and because we are His children. He loves us. The rain is like this knife I am threatening you with. Although the rain seems threatening, it cannot kill you. So have faith in God and do not be scared.
And the wife felt comforted by his words. She calmed down and realised that they had already crossed half of the forest. So why not continue on the rest of the journey.
Faith is more than intellectual belief. Intellectual belief may waver but faith by heart is permanent. One must have sincere faith in his Master.
(Spiritual training program –Bhau Kalchuri ed. 2005 pp-58-59)
18-FOUR TYPES OF KNOWLEDGE (SIMILE)
Thereupon Baba discoursed on the four types of knowledge – worldly knowledge, inner knowledge of the planes, Self-knowledge of the seventh plane, and All-Knowledge which only the Avatars and Sadgurus have in order to work in and for the three worlds.
Baba then explained the seven planes and seven heavens:
Corresponding to the seven planes are seven parts of the physical body:
1st plane – the navel;
2nd plane – the left part of the chest;
3rd plane – the right part of the chest;
4th plane – the lower part of the throat;
5th plane – the center of the throat;
6th plane – the third eye (between the two eyes);
7th plane – the top or center of the head.
The parts corresponding to the seven heavens are quite different and are in the back part of the body. The parts corresponding to the seven planes are in the front. The 1st heaven – back of the navel; 2nd heaven – back of the left chest and so forth up to the 7th heaven at the back of the head.
The yogis take the path through the heavens, but it is a path fraught with obstacles which are next to impossible to overcome. Marvelous splendors exist in the heavens and it is virtually impossible not to be drawn into them. The seeker becomes enchanted in the beauty of the heavens, with the result that his progress comes to a grinding halt.
Every plane is like the railroad station of a city, and every heaven is like the actual city. For this reason, the way through the heavens is longer and has the additional risk of the seeker's becoming engrossed in the attractions of the city.
Take an example of a man who is quite penniless, a beggar; however, he has forty-five children! While wandering with his family, he thinks that if he could beg one dollar he would manage the food for his children for the day. In the meantime, he comes across a pile of jewels. Now tell me will he stop? He cannot help but stop! But if there is a Sadguru he would enable him to proceed – to go to the station instead of the city. However much you may try to persuade a drunken man that a small puddle of water is nothing, he does not believe you and sees it as an ocean. He staggers while walking under the delusion that he is flying. He sees things magnified as double or sometimes triple, and as much as you try to convince him that there is only one of a thing, he sees two or sometimes more.
In the same way, you all have the false belief that the world is real. You cannot digest this truth, this fact, when I tell you that everything is false – a dream, an illusion. But just have faith in Me. Listen to Me, love Me, and one day you will have the awareness that God alone is the Reality; He is the Truth, and everything else is illusion.
(Refer to The Nothing and the Everything, for a description of the journey through the seven planes, pages 59–114)
The world around what one sees is dream or illusion (Maya). Only Master can make aware of it when one invokes love for his Master.
(Lord Meher, 1st. ed., Bhau Kalchuri, vol. 3, pp. 999 – 1001)
19-FREEDOM –TALE OF TWO BIRDS
Explaining about freedom, Baba narrated the following tale that ended with a few riddles, to which Baba did not reveal the answers:
There were two birds, a male and a female, who were always together. They were quite independent and would fly wherever they liked. They were always free, but they did not know what "freedom" was.
One day a man caught them both and put them in a cage. The male bird began beating his wings against the bars of the cage, hoping he could force his way out. But he gradually lost all his feathers.
Subsequently injuring his wings, he became nearly unconscious
But the female bird was intelligent. She saw how foolish it was to try to break through the doors with the beating of her wings and she remained quiet, patiently waiting for the cage door to open. She saved herself from injury, because she wisely remained calm.
After a long time, the door was eventually opened and the pair flew out. The moment they were free, they realized what true freedom meant. They knew the pangs of suffering caused by the lack of freedom. Because they had been caged, their subsequent freedom had meaning.
The female bird flew away, but the male could not fly well because of a broken wing and he was eaten by a cat!
Now tell me who was the man who caged the birds? Who were the birds? Who was the cat? Try to grasp the meaning of this riddle and compose a poem about it.
The soul is caged in human body. When one invokes God’s grace and patiently waits for, he realises his freedom from the cage (body) after having achieved God-realisation.
(Lord Meher –pp-1534)
20-GOD-MAN NEEDS WATCHMAN
Once, when someone asked why Baba needed a night watchman, He related this story:
The Sufis call all human beings, except Sadgurus, dogs, because, according to them, ordinary men of the world are not worthy of being called anything else.
Once there was a Sadguru living on the banks of a river; he always had a man guarding his door. One day the king of that city came to the door of the Sadguru and demanded his darshan. The watchman stopped him. He went inside and asked his Master's permission, which the Sadguru refused, saying that he would not see the man now. The king began to quarrel with the watchman, asking why the Master kept the doors closed. "Being a man of God, he should keep his gates open every minute," he said. "They should never be closed. No one should be prevented from going inside. What need is there for a watchman like you?"
The Sadguru replied from within: "A watchman is very much essential to drive away dogs like you!" The king at once realized his insolence and ego in demanding an audience. He fell on his knees and humbly requested the watchman to beseech the Master to grant him audience. The Sadguru at once allowed the king inside and met him.
The ego always tickles us, especially on the planes when we realize that we are on the path and feel important and are tempted to tell others of our experiences. Several days ago, a man came to me and related his experiences. I later explained to him that he was on the first plane, but for all of you present it [the planes] is immaterial and unimportant.
These experiences of the planes are illusions within this great illusion (creation). I told the man not to tell others of his experiences, to take my name and not to give himself importance.
Master can be approached with good faith only. No one can claim or has right to be worthy of Master’s grace unless it is destined. For anyone, it is a rare opportunity to come into contact of Avatar or Sadguru. It requires lives of preparation for one to come in contact with an Avatar or Sadguru. Once, one has come in contact of Avatar or Sadguru his spiritual progress gets accelerated.
(Lord Meher pp-5022-1963)
21-GOD'S SENSE OF HUMOR
It was a day for light talk and it seemed most appropriate that Baba touched on the subject of God's sense of humor. He stated that Creation is God's Lila (Divine Sport) and that it is sustained by His sense of humor. He also explained that the expression of God's humor varies with the scope and range of work that is ordained and accomplished in each advent through the Avatar, Sadgurus, saints and masts. In fact, God's sense of humor is so pervasive that there is not a person who is totally devoid of it.
Baba began in a humorous vein. "Whether I am the Avatar or Shaitan (Satan) one thing is certain and that is I have a great sense of humor. It is My sense of humor that makes Me rejoice to see Anna 104 and happy to listen to the irrelevant talk of Babadas. Anna's type of personality is more than enough to exhaust the patience and forbearance of rishis and munis (saints and sages). Yet, I cannot help but humor them both, and going out of My way to keep them near Me. Both of them have rendered great and unique service to Me and I know that they both love Me sincerely."
Baba then referred to incidents from the different lives of the Avatar that expressed a deep sense of humor. He continued:
"It is said that once Rasool-e-Khuda (the Messenger of God) felt indisposed and someone suggested that that was due to an evil eye and that He should sleep on a pillow with an open knife underneath it. He did so, and thereafter declared Himself to be all right. Call it ordinary or call it Divine; it was Mohammed's sense of humor.
"It is a fact that, during the childhood of His grandsons, Hassan and Hussain, the Prophet predicted the Moharram "Karbala" to His daughter Fatima, the mother of (the) martyrs, the Prophet did not try to avoid (or avert) the tragedy and that was only because of God's Divine sense of humor in Mohammed.
"Likewise, the strife between the Kauravas and the Pandavas and the consequent bloodshed was not only due to the Divine sense of humor in Krishna, but its height was reached when Krishna himself died through an arrow that accidentally struck one of his legs from the bow of an ordinary hunter who never had any intention of harming the Rangila (playful) Avatar in any way.
"The kind-hearted Jesus knew very well that His nearest disciple would betray Him and thus lead to His crucifixion; but, because of the Divine sense of humor, Christ could not help getting Himself crucified, although the world rightly continues to look upon Him as the Savior of humanity.
"The funniest Divine sense of humor was on the part of Buddha when He simply died of simple dysentery, though His "medicine" for the spiritual beemaries (illnesses) of mankind holds the field to this day.
"In short, save for a change in the circumstances, the atmosphere and the surroundings, the same old, old story goes on repeating again and again which by itself proves the Divine sense of humour.
"The manifestation of the Divine Fun (Sport) or Lila, however, depends upon the Great Ones (Perfect Ones) of God who achieve Oneness with God; and, thus, in spite of raising themselves above the Law of Duality, they still retain the Divine sense of humor to uphold the universal law of ignorance through which Knowledge Divine is achieved for all eternity.”
"Those who were with Me at the spot at the time of My car accident in America can alone well describe My own sense of humour as to how thoroughly battered, bruised and literally helpless and hopeless I was when lying with broken bones in a pool of My own blood together with My dearest ones, I yet maintained My silence and My consciousness throughout the crisis and the long period of convalescence."
In every Avatarhood, the Avatar retains His sense of Divine Humour and uses it as an instrument in His Avataric activities to sustain universal suffering.
Glimpses of the God-man, Vol. 3, pp. 155-157, Bal Natu , 1982 © Avatar Meher Baba Perpetual Public Charitable Trust
22-GOOD & BAD
Baba was in a good mood and asked, "Who is good and who is bad?" To illustrate, He told this story:
Once there was a thief who committed many robberies at so many different places. One day he entered a house where he saw a poor woman in great pain about to deliver a baby. He felt so sorry for her, because she was all alone, that instead of robbing her house, he helped her deliver her baby. He looked around and saw that there was nothing to eat in the house and very little clothing. So he went out and bought food and clothing for the woman. He attended her for a few days, and after she was on her feet again, he went on his way.
So, what do you think of this man? Is he good or bad? People call him bad because he was a thief, but then he did a good turn, so he became good. In reality, there is nothing like good or bad. There are three things I don't like: greed, anger and lust. These are the three things that, according to Me, are bad, so abstain from them
According to Avatar Meher Baba, there is nothing good or bad. There are different degrees of goodness. Attainment of absolute good and absolute bad is the state of God-realization. Greed, anger and lust are bad and hindrance in spiritual progress.
23-GROSS, SUBTLE AND MENTAL PLANES (SIMILE)
Would you like Me to play some tricks? Take this glass as God the Infinite. God cannot be seen with our limited eyes. He is Infinite, absolutely invisible, independent, yet He pervades everything. Baba took a large glass in his hands which was covered with bright golden paper and marked "GOD." Inside the big glass were three other smaller ones. He explained:
Now see that there are three illusory existences inside God — three smaller glasses inside the large glass. Here is one of them, the gross world; it is the smallest (the innermost glass covered with a coppery shade). Although to us it is so big, so infinite. This gross world depends on the next illusory existence, the subtle world (second inner glass). The gross existence depends on the subtle and is within the subtle.
And this subtle existence depends on the mental world (the third inner glass).
This mental existence depends on God (the large glass). Thus the gross depends on the subtle, and the subtle depends on the mental, and the mental depends on God, and God is independent. Note that there are four glasses, and that each one is different and separate; but each one is dependent on the other; except the large outer glass marked GOD. Only GOD is independent — like the outermost glass that holds all the others.
The gross, subtle and mental planes are different but interdependent. Three planes and God are explained with simile of four glasses by Avatar Meher Baba. Subtle plane superimposes over gross plane and mental plane superimposes over gross and subtle both.
Anything that forms itself into a habit loses its freshness, sincerity and enthusiasm – even repentance. If you every day become weak and repent for having been weak, in the end you find your only weakness has been repenting. Only love remains ever-fresh.
The habit of questioning and doubting in the end reacts on the questioner himself. Vivekananda used to always ask questions: "Why? Why this? Why that?" Ramakrishna loved him very much so he used to answer. But one day he got fed up and did not reply. Vivekananda asked again and again, but got no answer.
Then one night at midnight, Ramakrishna said, "Bring me food," and he requested certain kinds of dishes. Vivekananda could not find the food in the house at that hour. Ramakrishna asked him, "Why? Why is it not available?" and Vivekananda said, "Because it's twelve o'clock at night! It's not the time for eating!" At that moment, Vivekananda got his answer. From that day, he never asked another question.
Now I, who have formed the habit of answering, will now ask questions and you all answer honestly. Is there real harmony here?
To this question, there was no reply.
A questioning mind may lag behind in faith for God
(Lord Meher, 1st. ed. Bhau Kalchuri, Vol. 6, p. 2178).
25-HOW STRONG IS MAYA’s GRIP
There was a big temple in a city. A beggar used to sit by the side of the doorway, begging for alms. He could save twenty five rupees in coins and securely put them in a tin pot under his rags. He became ill and feared that he was going to die. Lest his savings should fall into other's hands, he thought it prudent to put all the coins in his mouth and shut it tightly at the time of his death. He did so and died. His body was buried on the banks of a river.
Many days passed by. Playing children picked up his skull and kicked it. The ring of the coins amused them and it was a regular sport for them.
A wily fellow observed all this. He took the skull home, unobserved by anyone, put it in his pooja room and began worshipping it with all attendant formalities.
One day standing with all reverence before the skull, he addressed it, "Look here, the people of this place are very bad. They wanted your money and therefore they kicked you all the time. I have brought you here, worshipped you and now I want to put many more coins in your mouth to increase the amount of your savings."
He stood before the skull with folded hands. The skull opened its mouth. He lost no time and smacked at the back of the skull. The coins rolled down; the cunning man collected them and threw away the skull.
Baba concluded, "Even after one's death one must cling to the love of one's master."
Impressions of desires are carried birth after birth with our mental bodies. Avatar Meher Baba wants one to carry His love death after death in every life
(In the company of Avatar Meher Baba, pp. 162-164, 1988, 1992 © M. R. Dhakephalkar)
26-I AM JUST LIKE WALL. (SIMILE)
On February 1st, 1927, Baba did not eat and remained only on water. That day, with Baba present, another discussion took place about starting the new school. Rustom, Behramji, Chanji, Vishnu and Afseri were ready to take responsibility for it. The expenses for its re-establishment were debated and all agreed that it should be started soon, without wasting any unnecessary money erecting a permanent structure. Pendu then asked if Rustom would agree with this plan since he was in favor of constructing a large building. Baba smiled and began tossing a rubber ball against the wall - at first softly and then more forcefully. He explained:
The ball will rebound to you with as much force as with it is thrown. The wall is firm, stationary and inactive - doing nothing - and in that respect it is like a Sadguru. It is for you to determine what force you use to throw the ball against the wall so that when it rebounds it may be caught.
In the same way, before doing anything or taking any action, you should first determine what force you should use in doing it. You have to ascertain what is really requisite and then act accordingly. Here in the case of erecting a building, if you devote more attention to small things, like the appearance and beauty of it, the expense will naturally increase. First look at the means at your disposal and then decide. If you become taken by making the building comfortable and fancy, spending more than you have, it will come around your neck.
I am just like the wall - doing nothing. You have to throw the ball and catch it. So throw it in such a way that you can easily catch it without getting tired. Remember to look before you leap!
One must intellectually decide his work to be undertaken and force which he can put in according to his capacity. Avatar Meher Baba’s response is like a wall which reflects according to the gravity of your faith and devotion in Meher Baba.
Lord Meher, Bhau Kalchuri, Vol. 3, pp. 903 – 904
27-I AM LIKE THE OCEAN (SIMILI).
On April 22nd, (1932) Baba went for a walk to the beach after lunch. Pointing to the ocean, Baba remarked to the group present:
I am like the ocean you see before you – always ready to receive anything, good and bad. All your thoughts, feelings, all and everything lay them at my feet and be free!
I am like the sunshine which falls evenly on all objects. But if a person holds an umbrella over his head, he does not benefit from the sun's rays. The umbrella prevents you from receiving rays of light from the Guru. You have to close this sanskaric umbrella in order to receive the light from the Master. Only then will you tangibly acquire the light.
To do this, only think of Me and keep Me in your thoughts. The umbrella (sanskaras) will be gradually closed as a result of My nazar – sight.
One can unburden or shed his sanskaras by remembering Avatar Meher Baba or Sadguru in his thoughts, words and actions.
(Lord Meher, 1st. ed., Bhau Kalchuri, Vol. 5, p. 1594.)
28-IF YOU WANT TO BE WORTHY OF MY LOVE, BE LIKE AYAZ
Once, when explaining to the women about love, Baba narrated this story about the ancient Persian king Gaznavi:
King Muhammad Gaznavi had a slave named Ayaz, who loved him very much. He obeyed the king in every detail and carried out all his behests. Ayaz had no care for his own life and, to keep Gaznavi happy, would do anything.
But, because the king loved Ayaz more, the other courtiers were jealous and could not tolerate the king's expression of love for his slave. The king knew all about this. He once gathered his courtiers around him and, placing before them a valuable pearl, ordered them to break it into pieces with a stone! They were bewildered and thought the king had gone mad to order the destruction of such a valuable gem! Not one of them was willing to obey the king.
Gaznavi then called Ayaz and ordered him to destroy the pearl. Ayaz immediately carried out the order, shattering the pearl to pieces! Gaznavi said, "Ayaz values my word more than the pearl! What value has a gem before my words? He does anything I tell him and respects my commands. He knows nothing other than to treasure and fulfill my orders and keep my pleasure. Because he loves me so much, I love him most of all! In your eyes, the pearl is valuable, but in the eyes of Ayaz, the worth of my words and my pleasure is more!"
After the story, Baba concluded with these remarks:
If you want to be worthy of my love, be like Ayaz! But, at the moment, you are not like Ayaz, but like piyaz – onions! Because every time I handle you, I weep!
Implicit obedience of a Master without use of intellect is desirable for a disciple.
(Lord Meher page-2331)
If understood, life is simply a jest,
If misunderstood, life becomes a pest.
Once overcome, life is ever at rest.
For pilgrims of the Path, life is test.
When relinquished through love, life is at its best.
Life is a mighty joke! He who knows this can hardly be understood by others.
He who does not know it feels himself in a state of delusion. He ponders over this problem day and night, but finds himself incapable of knowing it.
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 ever remain the same — the originator of this joke! This knowledge is not achieved by reasoning; it is born of experience."
Life is like a movie
In movie in which a villain annoys an innocent, decent man. He catches him, harasses him and wants to kill him. The spectators are fascinated by such drama and want to know if the poor man will manage to free himself from the clutches of the villain. If the victim overcomes his dilemma, the spectators feel happy; but if the villain gets the upper hand, they feel miserable. When the show is over, they realize it was merely a film – a picture on the screen – and the feelings that surged within them while watching it were without any basis. It was a mirage in which they were absorbed.
Your life is like that. It is a mere movie which has no substance to it for it is false – made-up. All that you see about you is absolutely nothing. Everything is false – an illusion, a play, a film, a mirage! Therefore, I repeatedly emphasize to one and all, do not be attracted by Maya; always pray sincerely to God and remember Him. Hold fast to My feet and I will lead you on the path to Realization.
Everyone is in the grip of Maya or worldly illusion. One’s role is like a puppet or an actor who is being directed by God. Only constant remembrance of personified God the Avatar or Sadguru can lead to God-realisation.
In order to solve the problem of sex, the minds first understand that both alternatives are equally creation of imagination working under influence of craving.
Foremost, you should try to get rid of lust, as all other vices are on account of it. For instance, if a parrot's throat is cut, it dies. But if its wings are clipped, it does not die, after some time the feathers of the wings grow back. Lust can be compared to the parrot's head. Therefore, when lust is still present and we conquer other evils, such as anger, the evils again revive; everything rises out of the head. But if lust is killed once and for all, every other evil is also destroyed; you have cut off its head.
There is no need to stop thoughts from coming. This is a very important thing. In no book it is mentioned. It is only for My lovers that I am pointing out today the secret of this spiritual darkness.
Lusty, good or bad thoughts should not be checked. Let them come, rather encourage them to come! Do not feel nervous or get despondent, but never allow them to express themselves in actions.
What happens then? To clean the slate of the mind these sanskaras should be spent in any way. If they are not spent in this birth they will have to be spent in the next birth. So they should be spent through thoughts only. If they are spent through physical actions, as we have said, new sanskaras are created. So they should only be spent mentally. When their force is spent, you are free.
Now why do these thoughts come? From where do they come? They are not borrowed, nor do they come from somewhere outside. They were deep within you. If they do not surface now, they will surge up some other time. So I repeat, don't worry, and if you follow Me hundred percent you will be free.
Lust is a gravest vice. Its sanskaras are of deepest red color which are very difficult to wipe out. If lust is not controlled it brings back other vices such as anger etc.
31-MAJZOOB, PERFECT MASTER AND AN ORDINARY MAN (SIMILE)
Baba gave this simile:
For example, there is a man sailing in a boat on the ocean. He is enjoying the sea breezes and being out on the water. But if the man himself turns into the ocean, what is the use of the boat? When the man was without knowledge of the ocean and its greatness, it was necessary for him to use the boat as a means of enjoying the pleasures of boating. But what care does he have for the boat when he himself becomes the ocean? This is the state of a Majzoob, who does not care for the boat (body), which now drifts here and there at the mercy of the waters.
The Sadguru, however, does care and make use of the boat. He can move and carry it whenever and wherever he likes, by catching hold of it from the bottom from under the water. Whereas, mankind is drifting here and there, without advancing at all towards the Goal. Such is the difference between the states of a majzoob, Sadguru, and an ordinary human being. But this difference, though apparently quite trivial, is actually tremendous, beyond imagination.
Majoob (God-realized), Avatar and Sadguru are like ocean and man is like a boat. Boat as man has to turn into ocean to realize himself as God. (Lord Meher pp-686)
32-MASTER AND THE OLD MAN'S FOUR SONS
Here is a story, as told by Baba, of a Perfect Master, an old man and his four sons:
All his life, the old man would come to the master. One day, he said to him, "Master, now I am old. Very soon I will die. I also want my four sons to follow you, so please advise them."
"All right, bring them tomorrow," the master replied.
The next day, of course, the old man brought all four sons to the master.
"One at a time, send your sons to me," the master instructed the old man.
The first son came before the master, who enquired, "What do you want to do?"
"Master, whatever you want me to do, I will do," the first son replied.
So the master told him, "I am very, very happy. Last night, I was thinking about you and what would be good for you. If you do a normal job, then, of course, you will become a slave. You will be bound. This is not good for you, you should be free! Do you want to cultivate land?"
"Yes, master, if you want me to do it."
"Become a farmer. Cultivate the land, and you will be free. But don't tell anyone, this is a secret for you. Now go."
So the first son left, thinking that the master had given him something secret and that he must not tell anyone.
The second son then came to the master.
"If I ask you to cultivate the land," the master said, "what might happen? Sometimes it will rain, and sometimes it will not. If it rains, then you will have a good crop. But if it does not rain, then you will have a bad one. So do you want to cultivate land?"
And the second boy answered, "Master, you please decide."
"No, land cultivation is not good for you. Go into business. If you do, you will earn a lot. So, do you want to go into business?"
"Of course, master, if that is what you want!"
"Good. But this is a secret for you. Go out and go into business. Do not tell anyone."
Then the third son came to the master.
The master said to him, "I was thinking about you, and what you should do. If you cultivate land, that will be no good. If I ask you to go into business, then sometimes you will incur a loss and sometimes a gain. So, this also would be no good for you. But if you take a job, on the first of every month, you will get a salary. Do you want this?"
"Yes, I would like a job if you want me to have one, master," said the third one.
And the master said, "Okay, good. But this is our secret. Do not tell anyone."
Then the fourth son came to the master.
"Of course, I have been thinking about you," said the master. "If you do land cultivation, there will be rain at some times, and no rain at others. This is no good for you. If I ask you to do business, you will incur a loss also no good. If I ask you to do a job, you will become a servant, and this, too, will be no good for you. So why don't you remain here with me?"
And the fourth son replied, “Master, I had wanted to be with you!"
"This is a secret, so do not tell anyone," the master informed the fourth son.
Why did the Perfect Master give different orders to the different sons? Because their treatment needed be according to the disease from which each one suffered.
Though we don't know our own disease, everybody has one. Only the masters know this.
So why Baba has said, "Remember Me and follow My Wish?"
Only the One who knows impressions can give a person proper treatment according to their disease (impressions). You cannot say, "Just do this or do that" as a spiritual discipline, because spiritual discipline is different for everyone.
Spiritual discipline is different for each and everyone. Only Master knows one’s spiritual need and assigns activities accordingly. One is supposed to remember Him and follow His wish.
(Lord Meher, 1st. ed., Bhau Kalchuri, Vol. 3, pp. 1106 – 1107).
33-MEHER BABA’S SCENT
One day after Meher Baba had emerged from a long period of seclusion, we were sitting in Mandali hall with some of His close lovers whom He had permitted to visit Him, and Baba asked them whether they remembered Him during the time they were away from Him.
In unison, all those present said they loved Him and remembered Him. “And how do you do that? Asked Baba.
One of them said that all the lovers gathered and performed His arti; another said they sang bhajans and third said they repeated His name. Yet another mentioned that his group not only remembered Baba but created a Baba atmosphere as well.
“How did you do that?” said Baba.
“Baba,” he replied, “We heard of a saint in our town and we visited him often. You have told us not to go saints and yogis but you have also said that you are in them. So I went with my family to visit this saint and I saw You in him.”
“If you saw Me in him,” said Baba “where was the need for you to come here today? You wanted a Baba atmosphere and you felt it in the presence of that person. There was no need therefore for you to come here.”
When the man had no reply, Baba commented, “I am also in the prostitute, in the vagabond and in a thief. Why do you not visit them? You will find Me there.”
Then as tears of remorse began to trickle down from man’s face, Baba continued. “What you say and you felt is right. I am in everything, but I am not that. That saint is a saint while I am the God-man. What do the police do to track down the criminals? They use dogs which will smell out the criminal first bringing the dogs to the site of the crime. Similarly, your coming there is like a preparation to catch the stealer of your hearts. I steal the hearts of mankind and if you want to track Me down, you must come to the site where I have spent much time.
“Sometimes the dogs loose the scent and the police bring them again to the site. Likewise, you must come again and again till you are certain that you have My scent and are not likely to lose it. When you have saturated that scent in yourself, then there will be no need for you to come here.”
It is desirable that one should visit Avatar Meher Baba samadhi very often as one can. Visiting samadhi is like sitting near camp fire from where one receives direct spiritual vibrations or His scent. Till one does not forget Avatar Meher Baba in his worldly affairs, one needs to have His scent or charge by visiting His samadhi
(Ancient One-p-125© Avatar Meher Baba Perpetual Public Charitable Trust)
34-MUHAMMAD FORBADE WINE
With Christians wine is used as a symbol of communion with Jesus, in remembrance of his last supper on the night before his crucifixion, whereas with Muslims wine is forbidden. In Islam, it is said, "Wine is the root of all evil!" Wine (khamr), meaning all things (of liquor or alcohol) which intoxicate the brain. Taken to an extreme, it is said that even if a drop of wine were to drop on a Muslim's arm, he should take a knife and cut that part of his flesh away.
During Meher Baba's advent, wine is not considered an "evil to man," though he acknowledged in California in 1956 that there was a serious "liquor problem" in America with public. But the illicit use of drugs, such as LSD, hashish, marijuana, narcotics, barbiturates and methamphetamines is considered an evil – harmful to mind, body and spirit. However, in Islamic countries, such as Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, India and others, smoking hashish and opium is a widespread common indulgence, and it is not written that these substances were forbidden by Prophet Muhammad.
Since so much has been said and done by Meher Baba and His followers against the use of illicit drugs, some light may be shed on this plague of Western man by looking back on how Prophet Muhammad decided against the use of wine for his followers. According to scholars, several stories have been told about the occasion when Muhammad first prohibited the drinking of wine. The following story is considered traditionally true:
Muhammad, making a journey to a friend at noon, entered into his house where there was a marriage feast in full celebration. Sitting down with the guests, Muhammad observed them to be very merry and jovial, kissing and embracing one another, which was attributed to their cheerfulness of spirits raised by the wine. So impressed by that, Muhammad blessed wine as a sacred thing in being thus an instrument of causing much love among men.
But, returning to the same house the next day, Muhammad beheld another face of things – there was gore and blood all over the floor! A hand cut off, an arm, foot, and other limbs dismembered, which He was told was the effect of the brawls and fighting caused by the wine, which turned them mad and inflamed them into a fury, thus destroying one another even at a marriage feast. Whereupon Muhammad changed His mind,
According to Avatar Meher Baba, any kind of intoxication is not good physically, mentally or spiritually. Wine is the one which must be avoided.
35-NO INSTANT REALISATION BY AVATAR OR SADGURU
The discourse of Perfect Master Ghaus Ali Shah Qalandar was quoted by Meher Baba in reply to a question and He also narrated the following anecdote:
A certain man, having two vessels encrusted with the rust and dirt, decided to have them cleaned. He gave one vessel to a professional who promised to cleanse it in forty days, and the other to a man who undertook to do the job in a single day. The professional man began to work at his vessel scientifically. He subjected it to many processes over a period of forty days, and he made the vessel not only spick and span but also a thing for use.
The second man, who had promised to finish the job in one day, adopted the very drastic procedure of burning the vessel in a huge fire. This cleansed the vessel quickly and completely, but made it brittle and worthless. it can be seen, therefore , that although both the vessels were made clean, only that which underwent the lengthy process was of any use.
The Master went on to say that it was for this reason that a Perfect Master seldom gave realisation to an aspirant instantaneously, but led him to it slowly so that he might become a robust, useful vessel for God’s work.
In this connection, Meher Baba remarked to His disciples, “Realisation can be imparted to anyone in a second. It will then be for one’s own self only with no profit to others. The period austerity, self denial and hardship which one undergoes with a Master, engenders power and gives authority to use realisation, when achieved, for the spiritual awakening of others.
One essentially needs God’s grace for God-realisation but one has to earn it by himself going through lots of labour of love and develop longing for union with God like fish out of water. Avatar or Sadguru appears before deserving soul and bestows His grace of God realisation instantly.
36-THE PEARL DIVER
Baba quoted Hafiz and narrated simile of Pearl diver:
“When I became a lover I thought I had gained the Pearl of the Goal; foolish I did not know that this Pearl lies on the floor of an ocean which has innumerable waves to be encountered and great depths to be sounded.”- Hafiz
In the beginning the seeker of Truth is like a man who, having heard that a priceless pearl is to be got from the depths of the ocean, goes down to the seashore and first admires the vastness of the ocean and then paddles and splashes about in the shallows and, intoxicated with this new excitement, forgets about the pearl.
Out of many who do this, one after a while, remembers his quest and learns to swim and starts to swim out.
Out of many who do this, one masters swimming and reaches the open sea; the others perish in the waves.
Out of many who master swimming, one begins to dive; the others in their enjoyment of mastery, again forget about the pear;.
Out of many who practise diving, one reaches the ocean bed and grasps the pearl.
Out of many who get hold of the pearl, one swims back up to the surface with it; the others stay stuck on the floor gazing with wonder at the pearl.
Out of many who swim up to the surface, one returns to the shore. This one is the Perfect Master (Qutub) and He shows His pearl to the others -- the divers, the swimmers, the paddlers,
and so encourages them in their efforts. But He can if He wishes cause another to become the possessor of the pearl without that one having to learn swimming and diving.
But God-Man or Avatar is the Master of Masters (Qutub-al-Aktab), and can give possession of the Pearl to any number He likes. The Qutub is perfect Perfection, but is circumscribed by His office in regard to His help to men. The Avatar is beyond limits of function; His power and the effects of His power are boundless. The absolute Perfection of the Perfect Master is the same as God-Man's. The difference between them is in the scope of their functioning. One is limited, the other is unlimited.
One has to make all efforts to become a pearl diver to reach the pearl (God–realisation) at the bottom of ocean and bring it on the shore. But one who invokes extreme love for His Master, the possessor of pearl can get the pearl (God-realization) directly from His Master without entering in the ocean.
(The everything and the nothing, pp. 20-21, Copyright 1989 AMBPPCT)
Baba had told mandali a little anecdote which possibly some of His devotees had misconstrued.
When Baba asked "Are you familiar with Quaker Oats?" Baba went on to explain that the oats were good for children, as they gave nourishment and enabled the children to be strong and vigorous. He then told us the following story."
Baba began, "A mother has been feeding her son with Quaker Oats. She has been doing this for years and is quite convinced that the oats are beneficial for her son. Well, one day, as she pours some out for her son's breakfast, she notices that she only has enough left for one more serving. It is just after the war and there is a scarcity of consumer goods, there is rationing. So the woman is very concerned. She doesn't know whether she will be able to find any more tins of Quaker Oats in the stores.
"After breakfast, she rushes down to the store, and to her great relief, she notices that there is one tin left on the shelves. Immediately she goes over to get that precious last tin when the storekeeper appears and says, 'Don't take that tin.' The woman is startled and says, 'But I have to have this tin. I am almost out of Quaker Oats at home, so I need to get more.'
"I understand that,' the storekeeper replied, 'But please don't take that tin.'
"But I'm your old customer,' the woman pleads, 'I have been shopping here for years. Surely you can sell that to me.”
"I know you are my old customer, that is why I am asking you not to take that tin. I can sell it to you but. . .'
"I will pay extra,' the woman suggests, thinking that this is what the storekeeper has been leading up to. ‘I don't care what you charge; I have to have that tin.”
“No, no, you don't understand. It is not a question of paying extra at all. You see, I have just received a new shipment of Quaker Oats. That is the last tin from my old stock. Let me get you a tin from my fresh stock.”
Baba then asked, "What mother is there who would insist on buying the old stock when she could purchase a tin of the fresh new stock? I am the fresh stock," Baba added. "It is all Quaker Oats, the ingredients are the same, but I am the fresh stock."
Avatar Meher Baba said about Himself that He is like fresh stock of medicine and past Avatars or Sadgurus as outdated ones. The present Age is the Age of Avatar Meher Baba. Baba also said I have brought the same old wine in a new bottle- means the same truth with new explanation best suited for present mankind.
(That is how it was, p. 272-275)
38-RELIGION AND SHARIYAT IS LIKE ALPHA BOARD-(SIMILE)
Meher Baba discoursed:
This alphabet board which I use may be given to a child to make him begin to learn the ABC’s. But if he merely learns the alphabet without any efforts at proceeding further, he will learn practically nothing. It is the same in religion. The shariat, doctrines and dogmas are given as a preliminary beginning – like the alphabet – to reach the ultimate aim of the Realization of the Truth. After one learns to master the fundamentals, one advances; but if a person merely sticks to religious ceremonies and rituals and believes that religion is that alone, then he does not advance at all. God and Truth are far, far above shariat – doctrines and dogmas, ceremonies and rituals.
Shariyat or doctrines of any religion is like alpha board for common man. Further these fundamentals of ABC can make one to advance on spiritual path leaving behind alpha board.
39-REMAIN IN MAYA BUT DO NOT GET ENMESHED IN IT.
During this brief visit to Madras, Baba explained about Maya to Sampath Aiyangar:
It is like this: If a person wants to take the pearl from the bottom of the ocean, then he should not shout at the pearl to come up while he sits on the beach. If he really wants the pearl, he should try his hardest to plunge to the bottom of the ocean to get it.
Now, say that the water of the ocean is Maya and the pearl is God. According to spiritual law, it is then essential that the diver not get wet nor even touch one drop of water while diving! This means it is possible for him to dive and obtain the pearl, but it is impossible for him to not touch even a drop of water in the effort. This impossible aspect of spiritual things really makes the diver worthy of the prize.
In order to not touch water, the diver must put on a full diving suit; and after putting on an air tank, he can dive down. Only then will he be able to follow the rule of bringing up the pearl without getting wet.
To compare the above with spirituality, take the water of the ocean as Maya, the pearl as God, the diver as the seeker, the diving suit as love, or the willingness to renounce the world, and the man on the beach or boat in charge of the air compressor as the Sadguru. Without the help of the Sadguru to manipulate the air compressor, it is thus impossible for one to dive down and take the pearl, which means to free oneself from the clutches of Maya while remaining in Maya.
A man may discharge his worldly duties and maintain a household with a wife and child. But at the same time, he should remain detached from all this, come what may. This does not mean that he should be neglectful of his duties toward his near and dear ones, but that he should have no attachments to it at all. You know that a pen is yours and you use it. But if you lose it, you should not care about it; you should remain detached.
The meaning of God-Realization is emancipation – freedom from the bondage of Maya. But one has to be in Maya to come out of it. So remain in Maya but do not get enmeshed in it. Keep away from its tricks and snares
One should sincerely perform worldly duties and at the same time always keep in back of his mind that every thing around him is illusion (maya) and be not attached to it.
Lord Meher, 1st. ed., Bhau Kalchuri, Vol. 5, p. 1860.
Baba discoursed on the Sadguru:
Without the sanskaras being totally eliminated there is no spiritual liberation. To dispose of sanskaras one has to create "reverse" sanskaras, which are opposite in nature. Opposite impressions reverse the sanskaric makeup of the mind. To remove stains, soap or lime is necessary. But the mind never dies of itself.
For example, suppose your hand is to be broken. It is difficult and almost impossible for you to twist your own hand enough to break it. But if a sturdy fellow comes along and twists it, your hand fractures in a second. That sturdy chap is the Sadguru who is required to deal with the mind and all its mischief.
But a Sadguru is not to be found so easily. It requires love, the search for Truth amidst hardships and sufferings, and undergoing untold difficulties — these draw the Sadguru to the deserving ones.
If by hurting a person temporarily you provide a permanent healing, this apparently cruel act of yours is, in fact, a blessing. In the same way, suppose that by rendering a temporary healing you create a permanent hurt; this apparently blessed act of yours is, in fact, a curse. A doctor cutting open a boil and causing so much pain to the sufferer is considered an enemy who has hurt one; but when the pus is removed the patient is relieved, and the doctor is considered a real friend who helped.
So the Sadguru is at first apparently considered an enemy when he tries to remove sins and wipe out desires and sanskaras of the aspirant by forcing strict discipline on him, renunciation, et cetera. But when the bliss of union with the Divine Beloved is attained through his grace, he is considered a true friend.
To come into contact of a Master requires preparation of many past lives. Action of a Master may appear adverse and pain giving but ultimately results in spiritual benefit.
41-SADGURU, JEEVAN MUKTA AND MAN (SIMILE)
A Sadguru is like an ocean, a limitless stretch of water. Empty your mind of all mayavic desires and the waters of the ocean will find a way in – the waters of Knowledge, Power and Bliss.
The jivanmuktas and majzoobs and other spiritual beings on the subtle and mental planes are the pipelines for the waters of Realization. They distribute the ocean’s waters to deserving candidates who are prepared and who are being prepared.
Continuing the simile of water, Baba stated:
In gaseous form, water evaporates and forms clouds. Now you cannot use this gas or vapor in clouds for railway engines or any other steam-driven conveyance. For that you have to pump water from the ocean, river or some subsidiary; then you fill the tanks of the engine and produce steam to work it.
These clouds of condensed vapor may be compared to majzoobs, the steam being formed and used for work in the world by Sadgurus. And you the bhaktas (lovers) are the water which must be heated, boiled and transformed into steam. In other words, the essence must be prepared to change its very form. On the other hand, ice and snow are like worldly people who have no inclination toward spirituality – they are so cold!
Sadgurus are like ocean, Majzoobs like condensed vapour, devotees of God like water and men are like ice.
(Lord Meher, Bhau Kalchuri, Vol. 3, pp. 815 – 816.)
Baba explained self knowledge by a simile
The soul knows itself as its own bodies and knows other souls as their bodies, thereby sustaining a world of duality where there is sex, competition, aggression, jealousy, mutual fear, and self-centered exclusive ambition. Hence self-knowledge of the soul by means of any external sign is a source of untold confusion, complication, and entanglement.
This form of ignorance may be illustrated by means of the famous pumpkin story referred to by the Persian poet Jami in one of his couplets. Once upon a time there was an absentminded man who had no equal in forgetting things, even his own identity. He had an intelligent and trusted friend who wanted to help him to remember himself. This friend attached a pumpkin to his neck and said, "Now listen, old man, one day you might completely lose yourself and not know who you are. Therefore, as a sign, I tie this pumpkin around your neck so that every morning when you wake up you will see the pumpkin and know that it is you who are there."
Every day the absentminded man saw the pumpkin upon waking in the morning and said to himself. "I am not lost!" After some time, when he had become used to self-identification through the pumpkin, the friend asked a stranger to remain with the absentminded man, take the pumpkin from his neck during his sleep, and tie it around his own neck. The stranger did this; and when the absentminded man woke up in the morning, he did not see the pumpkin around his neck. So he said to himself, "I am lost!" Then he saw the pumpkin on the other man's neck and said to him, "You are me! But then who am I?"
This pumpkin story offers an analogy to the different forms of false self-knowledge growing from identification with one of the bodies. To know oneself as the body is like knowing oneself by means of the pumpkin. The disturbance caused by ceasing to identify with the gross, subtle, or mental body is comparable to the confusion of the absentminded man when he could no longer see the pumpkin around his own neck. The beginnings of dissolution of the sense of duality are equivalent to the man's identification of himself as the stranger who wore his pumpkin. Further, if the absentminded man in the story were to learn to know himself through himself independently of any external sign, his self-knowledge would be comparable to the true Self-knowledge of the soul — which, after ceasing to identify with the three bodies, knows itself to be none other than infinite God. Arriving at such Self-knowledge is the very goal of creation.
One always identifies himself with his false self.
43-SHEEP AND TIGER
Everything is in God, but the help of the Sadguru is needed in order to know and experience God." To illustrate this, Meher Baba narrated the following story:
Once in the jungle, a tigress died after giving birth to a cub. The cub remained hungry, without food or water for days. A shepherd found it and took pity on it. He reared it among his sheep. The cub grew up thinking he was a sheep. He did not know that he was a tiger.
One day, a grown-up tiger saw the cub playing among the flock and was surprised. He went to the cub and did his utmost to persuade it that it was a tiger and not a sheep. But the young tiger would not believe him. So the tiger took him to a pool of water and made him look at his own reflection there. The young tiger was astonished and at last was convinced of his true identity. He forgot the notion of his being a lamb and passed the rest of his days among tigers.
In this story, the sheep represent worldly people who are ignorant of the Truth. The flock of sheep represents the general public. The tiger cub is an ignorant man; the full grown tiger is the Sadguru; the pool of water symbolizes the path; and recognizing the reflection is attaining God-Realization.
Although the tiger cub was a tiger, out of ignorance, it took itself to be a sheep. And as long as the other tiger did not show it its reflection in the pool of water, this misconception continued. In the same way, though man is potentially God, being quite ignorant of his Real Self, he thinks himself to be only a man and passes through cycles of births and deaths. He continues wallowing in ignorance until the Sadguru makes him see his own true image.
One thinks of himself as human being but his real identity is God. Only Avatar or Sadguru can make man to realize God.
44-SPLENDID METAPHOR ABOUT GOD-REALIZATION
Suppose the ocean equals God. But in the beginning, the ocean did not know that it was a mighty ocean. This desire to know itself is the wind which created a bubble. The bubble is an atom, and the water in the bubble is the soul. After gradual advancement, the atom becomes a human form which becomes a wave. Now the wind gives the human form a small boat, meaning lifetimes, and the sea air is sanskaras.
The state of the man in the boat is that his hands are tied and hence he cannot take an active part in moving the boat — his life. He only breathes in and out. This breathing, which is an exchange of sanskaras, moves his boat. If he breathes in a good way and creates good sanskaras, the wind blows in such a way that his boat is led to a boatman who is a Sadguru. The boatman has dived into the ocean and now again swims to the surface of the water. He grasps the helm of those boats which come to him.
The boatman unties the man's hands and actually drowns him in the ocean. The moment he is drowned, he realizes that "I myself am the ocean." Now instead of remaining in the ocean, he surfaces and takes command of the boat — over which previously he had no control, but which now comes under his control — and he begins to move it wherever he wishes.
Boatman who commands boat is Avatar or sadguru and if Avatar or Sadguru wishes He can make man a boatman like Himself
(Lord Meher, 1st ed., Vol. 3, p. 957, Bhau Kalchuri)
45-THAT'S HOW YOU SHOULD LIVE IN THE WORLD
Hazrat Nizamuddin Awliya, the Perfect Master of Delhi, was once asked by a visitor how one should live in the world. At that moment it so happened that a few women were passing by with pitchers of water balanced on their heads, and, as they walked, they gossiped and gesticulated. Pointing to them Nizamuddin said, "Look at those women — that's how you should live in the world."
Asked to explain this cryptic remark, the Master continued, "These women returning from the well with pitchers balanced on their heads seem to be thinking of nothing else but exchanging tit-bits of gossip with each other; and yet they are all the time concentrating on something far more important, on balancing the pitchers on their heads.
Thus, whatever your body, your senses or the purely surface part of your mind may be occupied with, see that the root of your mind is constantly focussed on God."
Exercising all our worldly activities, one’s mind always needs to be focussed on his Master.
(God Speaks. 208, 1973 © Sufism Reoriented, Inc.)
Once there was a forest, and in that forest, a bird flew and flew until it reached a palace. In front of palace there was a mirror. When the bird approached mirror, it thought that another bird was behind mirror. In fact, that second bird was the first bird’s own reflection, a shadow, its illusion. But the real bird thought that the reflection as another bird. So the bird started pecking against the mirror with its beak. The bird got tired from doing this continuously. It did not understand that there was nothing in the mirror
This story was told by Beloved Baba and depicts different states of comciousness. In fact these states are planes-gross, subtle, mental-are nothing but illusion. In realty, subtle and mental states are “fine” illusion, while the gross state is not “fine” illusion, and Reality as Reality.
The reflection, the shadow, has no existence; it is nothing. Though it was an illusion, to think the reflection exists in delusion. And as long as you go on thinking that nothing but the world exits, you will find yourself in illusion.
The story shows that we take the illusion as real, though it is not there. Therefore, it is necessary that we have the knowledge that illusion is illusion and has no existence. Only God exists, and whatever appears to exist beside God, is nothing but illusion.
A Perfect Master had a wonderful disciple whose time for the realization of God seemed to be not far off.
He had, however, one very great difficulty. He would obey his Master implicitly, but sometimes not exactly enough. Just a little sloppy.
One day the Master gave him an order to knock on the door of the Master's room promptly at six o'clock the next morning.
He was, however, late.
But at six o'clock exactly the milkman knocked on the door, and as the door opened it was he who received the overwhelming flood of realization.
Appointed time given by Master is most important and non-recurring.
Meher Baba himself gave us this story of a king, his ring and his slave Ayaz. It is a beautiful story, and Baba repeated it many times.
The king was a spiritually advanced being; you could call him a saint or a spiritual master. He had a slave Ayaz, and this slave was so perfect slave that he was even equivalent to his master. So close was he to the master, the king, that in all matters to do with the kingdom he had the final word.
The king would ask his ministers for their opinions and then before a decision was made he would seek the advice of his slave. The ministers became more and unhappy about this, until the king decided that they must have an explanation.
So one day in court, the king shows his signet ring and points out that ring is used as a seal to all orders and laws of the land. He puts the ring on the table before him, and asks all his ministers and courtiers, “What is the ring’s worth? Tell me, what is the ring’s value?”
So the ministers and the courtiers express their ideas on its value; even jewelers are called to help in making estimates. After all have had their say, the king turns to Ayaz and asks him the ring's worth. Ayaz says, "As long as the ring is on the table it is worthless; no sooner is it on the finger of my lord it is priceless.”
After the story Baba would say: As long as you hold fast to Me, you are priceless, even though no one knows your worth; no sooner your hold on me is lost, you are worthless, no matter what your greatness or wealth in the world.
Disciple has to keep his Master above everything.
(It so happened, p-82)
49-THE STORY OF AN ASS
In the spiritual life it is not necessary to have a complete map of the path in order to begin travelling. On the contrary, insistence upon having such complete knowledge may actually hinder rather than help the onward march. The deeper secrets of spiritual life are unrevealed to those who take risks and who make bold experiments with it. They are not meant for the idler who seeks guarantees for every step. Those who speculate from the shore about the ocean shall know only its surface, but those who would know the depths of the ocean must be willing to plunge into it.
It can better be understood by a well-known story of an ass. An ass, who was plodding along a road for a long time and was very hungry, happened to see two heaps of grass—one at some distance on the right side of the road and the other at some distance on the left side of the road. Now the ass thought that it was of utmost importance to be absolutely certain which of the two heaps was clearly the better before he could intelligently decide to go to one heap rather than the other. If he decided without thorough thinking and without having sufficient grounds for his preference, that would be impulsive action and not intelligent action.
Therefore he first considered the distance at which the two heaps were respectively placed from the road he was treading. Unfortunately for him, after elaborate consideration, he concluded that the heaps were equally distant from the road. So he wondered if there were some other considerations that might enable him to make the "right" choice and speculated upon the respective sizes of the heaps. Even with this second attempt to be theoretically sure before acting, his efforts were not crowned with success because he concluded that both heaps were of equal size. Then, with the tenacity and patience of an ass, he considered other things, such as the quality of the grass. But as fate would have it, in all the points of comparison he could think of, the two heaps turned out to be equally desirable.
Ultimately it happened that since the ass could not discover any deciding factor that would make his preference appear theoretically sound, he did not go to either of the two heaps but went straight ahead — hungry and tired as before and not a whit better off for having come upon two heaps of grass. If the ass had gone to one heap, without insisting upon the theoretical certainty of having chosen wisely, he might perhaps have gone to the heap that was not as good as the other. And despite any mistakes in his intellectual judgment, he would have been infinitely better off from a practical point of view.
One cannot have complete road map of spiritual path before stepping. It is like diving into river of fire or entering into a tunnel. To one who takes risk and plunges, the secrets of the path are revealed to him step by step automatically.
50-THE STORY OF BAHLUL
The great mystic Bahlul wanted to contact certain notables of Persia for reasons of his own. The only way of doing so was to the Prince’s party attended by those notables. Unfortunately Bahlul was bald-headed, and those days no one without hair was allowed to attend any party given by the Prince, for the Prince had lost his own hair and to see others without hair prevented him from enjoying the party. And so when Bahlul went to the party he was thrown out. As the party lasted for three days Bahlul borrowed cloths and a wig and distinguished himself and went again on the following day. No one recognized him in his fine clothes. He made great impression, and was liked so much that the Prince asked him to sit next to him. No sooner Bahlul seated, and then he winked at the Prince. This the Prince did not understand but vaguely felt that such a gesture from the illustrious man must mean something important. Thinking that it merited a suitable response, he winked back. Those were near saw this exchange of winking and were impelled to imitate it. Soon the winking spread throught the company.
Then Bahlul cried, “Stop! O you wise men, why do you wink?” And the notable replied, “We are winking because you great man were winking. We only imitate you”. Then Bahlul took off his wig and said, “We two are both bald. Imitate us.” Then notables went away and on the third day returned with shaved heads. Bahlul turned to the Prince and said,” We are permanently bald; these men will have to shave their heads daily to remain bald.” Thus through his sense of humour, Bahlul secured access to those who he wanted to help.
No one should copy Master’s action, rather do everything as asked by his Master without any question of why and what.
51-THE STORY OF BAYAZID
On the morning of Good Friday, 15 April 1960, Baba explained about the Perfect Master Bayazid:
Bayazid was a Qutub, well known in the Sufi world.
A Sufi poet has sung: "Only after cycles is one born like Bayazid!" He hailed from Khurasan (Iran). Once a man, who walked 70 miles, came to him and told Bayazid, "My brother has deep love for you. He is seriously ill and is calling you to him. He could not travel such a distance, so he has sent me to you with a request for you to visit him before he dies."
Although very old, Bayazid went to his lover, walking ten miles every day for a week. People were amazed that he, who had never set foot in their town before, came only to see one man.
After seeing the man, Bayazid declared, "My work is done." And covering ten miles each day, he walked back home.
It was his habit to change his kafni (robe) each day and see if anything was left in the pockets. When he returned home, he took off his kafni and on examining it found an ant. Bayazid thought: "This ant has come from that town," and so saying, he started out on foot again back to that place. He walked the 70 miles and, leaving the ant in the town, he walked back home again and soon after gave up his body.
Why did he go back? How meaningful was it? How much work did he do? Intellect cannot grasp it. Only he knew why he was doing this particular work. So, I always say: Do as the Perfect Master tells you to do, and do not use your common sense. The Perfect Master's work and statements are beyond the reach of intellect. Just go on doing as he directs.
Once, an inquisitive and doubting man went to Bayazid and said, "You, being perfect, ought to know the thoughts of others. What am I thinking of just now?"
Bayazid replied, "You are thinking that which you ought not to have thought of, and asking that which you ought not to have asked. Had you come with an open mind and curbed tongue, you would have received that which you ought to have received, instead of this well-deserved rebuke."
Master is slave of His lovers and undertakes all hardships to help His disciple. He never lets His lover down.
52-THE STORY OF FARIDUDDIN GANJ SHAKKAR
Dr. Bharucha told Baba of a man in his home town (Navsari) who professed to have the power to drive out evil spirits from people possessed by them. Bharucha asked Baba, "How such powers are developed, and are the people who have them really advanced souls on the path?"
In reply, Baba stated:
It is possible to derive such powers if you gain tantric knowledge –mystical formulas for attainment of supernatural or magical powers. These powers may then be utilized for good or bad purposes – good when they are used for removing evil spirits from people and ghosts, bad when they are used for selfish ends and self-aggrandizement. These tantric powers have nothing to do with the spiritual path and the divine powers of the planes. Miracles performed by people possessing such powers are very childish. Even Vivekananda got himself in a terribly bad predicament when he began to crave such powers. His Guru, Ramakrishna, saved him in the nick of time. (1)
Baba then further explained:
A person wanting to possess such powers makes a small circle (chilla-nashini) (2) around himself and sits within its limits for forty days and nights repeating a particular mantra. If he succeeds in sitting there for the full forty days without a break, he gains certain powers. But it is not easy to go through such an ordeal and do such penance, as the person often sees weird and terrifying sights and is practically forced to leave the boundary of the circle due to fright. If he leaves the circle, he gains no occult powers and would have to start the process again.
Regarding miracles, Baba narrated the tale of Baba Fariduddin Ganj-Shakkar:
Farid did a lot of penance in order to gain powers. He did not eat for days on end and developed a severe gripping pain in his abdomen. As a last resort, he hung himself upside down deep inside a well. After several days, he was miraculously brought out of the well and found to his utter astonishment that he had derived some great powers. He at once began using them. Some birds on a nearby tree were sitting. He uttered: "Let the birds fall dead," and all the birds fell to the ground dead! He then said: "Let the birds come to life and fly away," and immediately the whole flock was alive and flew away!
He went from village to village, showing off his powers and thus feeding his ego. At a particular village, he saw an old woman drawing water from a well and splashing it just outside the well. The woman continued this monotonous procedure for a long time. Farid, desperately disgusted with the seeming madness of the woman, confronted her and asked her why she did such a foolish, time and energy-consuming action. She cryptically replied: "Son, by splashing water here, I am trying to put out a fire raging in a village ten miles from here! This action is not as easy as making dead birds fly away again!"
Farid realized at once that the woman was not an ordinary person and asked for forgiveness for his past deeds. She directed him to a Perfect Master sitting underneath a tree some distance away. Farid approached him and found that the tree he was sitting under was totally dry, and the hot sun was beating fiercely upon him. At once, he made use of his powers, turning the tree's branches full with green leaves. The Master just looked up at the tree and the branches became barren again. Farid again made the tree green, but a glance from the Master denuded it again. This happened five times. At last Farid realized that his powers were nothing compared to the Master's, and he surrendered himself to him. The Master advised Farid to become a real fakir, and not to play like a child with such powers. He said that miracles are not the criterion of fakiri (fakir-hood).
Baba Fariduddin Ganj-Shakkar eventually became a Perfect Master. Baba then narrated another story of a Mohammedan who had gained certain powers through tantric knowledge:
This man even had powers to give sight to the blind (3) and so had a very big following. He stayed in a huge building that had several floors. One day while he was standing on the terrace of his house, he saw a cow fall in a well. He instantly stretched out his hand toward the well and pulled out the cow.
Very close to his house was a river and on the other bank lived a Perfect Master. Since the Master did not perform any miracles, his following was very limited. The Master, on learning of the cow incident, sent one of his men to ask the Mohammedan to stop all that nonsense. The Mohammedan flew into a rage and swore that he would revenge himself on the Master, and made his plans.
One night, he sent for a very beautiful prostitute and, for a fee, asked her to go to the Master with wine and pork. She was instructed to entice the Master to eat the pork and drink the wine. So she went. The Master appeared very happy to see her and thoroughly enjoyed her company, and also the food and wine she had brought for him.
The next morning, the prostitute returned to the Mohammedan. Mohammedan was very happy with the news of her success. The Mohammedan was also very happy now that he had the proof to denounce the Master and his spirituality, as he had gone against the tenets of the Muslim religion (by eating pork and drinking wine).
The Mohammedan, with a band of his ardent followers, decided to go to the Master to denounce him. He rode on a horse and soon began crossing the river, while his followers waded after him. When the horse was in midstream, the horse stopped and began to urinate in the river. Observing this, the Master shouted out and reprimanded the Mohammedan for allowing his horse to pollute the river.
The Mohammedan scoffed at this and thought the Master was completely insane, for he could not imagine how a little urine could pollute the whole river. He shouted back at the Master: "How can this urine pollute a river?"
The Master replied: "How then can a little wine and pork pollute the Ocean that I am?" The Mohammedan understood the depth of these words and went to the Master and surrendered himself to him.
Baba concluded, "Powers have no importance. Only love counts on the path. This requires the daring to annihilate oneself. Miracles are childish things."
Power to perform miracles by tantrik is no sign of spiritual advancement, but it de-generates the spiritual progress. Avatar and Sadguru are like unlimited ocean and no amount of filth can pollute it. Only love for God counts on the path of spirituality.
(1) Refer to a most remarkable and revealing biography of any modern Guru, The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna about the life of the Sadguru of Calcutta, Ramakrishna Kathamrita, translated by Swami Nikilananda in 1942.
(2) Regarding chilla-nashini (forty days of austerities), also called a penance, refer to The Nothing and the Everything, page 78.
(3) Refer to God Speaks, page 47, regarding the miraculous occult powers attained in the third plane of the subtle world.
53-THE STORY OF HAFIZ
Meher Baba related following story of Hafiz:
There is no one equal to Hafiz in poetry. He was a Perfect Master. He was fat and very ugly and born of poor parents. His father was a coal merchant. Hafiz, too, was a coal merchant and very black with soot, so imagine how he must have looked.
From his childhood, he had a penchant for hearing stories of Perfect Masters. He knew the Koran by heart, and hence was given the title of Hafiz.
When Hafiz was 21 years old, while passing by a big mansion, he saw a very beautiful girl on the terrace. He fell in love with her at that instant and decided he would marry her. The girl did not even take notice of the ugly Hafiz in the street. Hafiz felt helpless, and he thought of gaining her by the 40-days' penance. He succeeded in his attempt (of chilla-nashini), and on the fortieth day, the archangel Gabriel came to him and told him to ask for anything he wished. Gabriel's beauty was so astounding that Hafiz forgot the beauty of the girl. He thought that if Gabriel could be so beautiful, how much more would be the beauty of God! So, he at once replied, "I want God!"
Gabriel directed him to the Perfect Master Attar. Hafiz served Attar for 40 long years. He broke his head at the feet of Attar, so it is said, but the Master still seemingly had no compassion for Hafiz. After 40 years of such hell on earth, one day Attar suddenly gave Hafiz God-realization. After having the divine experience, Hafiz began reciting poems, and that is why his poetry is Truth, and so beautiful and knowledge-giving.
Baba ended by stating:
Powers have no significance. Hafiz says that the one who does not lay his life at the feet of a Perfect Master cannot know God. It is very difficult to become one with God. A Master's grace makes it very easy, but to get his grace is as difficult as trying to realize God by one's own efforts. It becomes easy once one becomes a slave at the feet of a Perfect Master. Ages of restlessness get eased as soon as one drops one's life at his feet. This does not mean cutting off one's head and putting it at the feet of the Master. It means literal obedience. (Lord Meher-pp-4970-1963)
Avatar (God personified) is ever beautiful. Nothing in creation can be compared with beauty of the Avatar. It is everlasting beauty of the Avatar reflected in the creation. The Avatar always descends in male form with most beautiful personality. He selects His form, His parents and even His place of birth.
54-THE STORY OF MAHBOOBI PERFECT MASTER
The tales of Sadgurus and Qutub, and power of their words and blessings, make the most marvelous of spoken and written thoughts. There is a wonderful and mysterious story stated by Meher Baba of a Perfect Master who lived in Lucknow, India. In medieval times, between the 13 th and 14 th century. The exact centaury was not revealed and Baba did not reveal the name or his whereabouts of his tomb. This Perfect Master is not recorded in any book and he is not included in any spiritual lineage. He is known as “the Mahboobi.” He was unique because he was physically a hermaphrodite. Speaking in symbols, that human being born free of sex, sexless, by being born without male and female organs.
In medieval India there was a class of hermaphrodites, who dressed as women and lived as wandering minstrels. Although they were outcaste from normal society, in order to earn a living they were hired to sing and play music at weddings. And also hired to wail and mourn at funerals. Such was their profession. This Sadguru from Lucknow was one of those and the leader of a tribe.
The following is the tale that Meher Baba related to the men mandali during the early 1960s, passed on by Eruch Jessawala. It is not recounted in any other Sufi or Vedantic book.
No one in Lucknow but his fellow hermaphrodites knew he was spiritually advanced. He was, in fact, a Sadguru and that is how his fame spread.
One day a groups of ruffians, in a bullying mood went about to harass and do violence to the small band of hermaphrodites. One of the ruffians pointed the leader of the hermaphrodites (namely, the Sadguru). As the man pointed to the leader and caught his eyes and was about to confront him, the man suddenly stopped and could not take another step and could not lower his arm. For several minutes, no matter how he struggled, he was paralyzed in his tracks. Only when the man pleaded with the leader to release him from this spell and assured him no harm would come to the Baba of the hermaphrodites did the leader restore the ruffian’s ability to move. Soon after, this story spread and the occult power of the leader became known, and people recognized him as a Master.
Later, as the people of Lucknow began to worship this hermaphrodite, opposition naturally arose, for he was of a low and disdain class. To disprove the power of the leader of the hermaphrodites, a devilish plot was conspired. Two influential families in Lucknow plotted the wicked ruse. It was decided that two boys, the sons of two families, deceive the hermaphrodite and approach him disguised as a married couple; one boy dressed as a women. The ruse was to approach the Master and seek his blessing in form of a child; naturally, this would be impossible. For both were males and this would prove to the people of Lucknow that the hermaphrodite Master was false and be cast into exile.
One dressed in disguise, the two boys approached the Master, who asked what they sought. “We are newly married, Master, we seek your blessing for a child.”
The hermaphrodite inquired if they were sincere and if they were certain they wanted a child. They assured him that a child would prove a blessing.
“So be it.” Said the Master. “You will bear a child.”
The two boys returned to their homes with the news, and the families were convinced that this would eventually put a stop to the worship of that hermaphrodite and exposé him as a fraud.
Weeks passed and the boy who was dressed disguised as girl started to undergo subtle physical changes which he afraid and embarrassed to admit. His body was changing into a girl’s body, and to his utter horror he was indeed showing all signs of being pregnant. Finally, the boy, not knowing what to do, confessed to his family what was happening to him and exposed his body, which now had female organs. The family now knew that they had cursed themselves. They had no recourse but to confess to the leader of hermaphrodite that they had tried to deceive him and therefore begged him to lift his curse from their son.
When the family approached the hermaphrodite, he explained that he did not curse the boy and could not undo his blessing, and the child was destined to be born. Within month that boy turned into full-breasted women who bore a child and the family became devotee to the hermaphrodite. Thus his name and fame spread, though his full story has been lost to be recorded in history.
Thus, Meher baba remembered this unique Perfect master, but did not name him, simply referring to him in the Sufi symbolic term “the Mahboobi.” The symbolism of the Sufi term means a human being who is interchangeable as both a man and a woman.
To approach an Avatar or Sadguru with malice intention or to defame Him may be very disastrous for anyone. Blessing of the Avatar or Sadguru is irreversible.
55-THE STORY OF MOUSE
Meher Baba illustrated following story.
There was a sanyasi. He had a mouse as his pet and would feed him every day. The mouse became fond of him and would visit him quite often.
One day the mouse informed the sanyasi that he was afraid of the cat.
"All right, I'll make you a cat," assured his master and immediately the mouse became a cat. The cat would purr and gambol at the sanyasi's feet.
One day the cat expressed his worst fears about the dog.
"All right, I'll make you a dog," the sanyasi complied with a benign smile. The cat changed into a dog. When he heard the roar of a lion from the neighbouring jungle, the dog became jittery and pleaded with his master, who turned him into a lion.
One day thick clouds gathered in the sky and the peals of thunder made the lion get panicky. He scampered to the sanyasi and told him that he was afraid of the thunder. The sanyasi reproached him.
"You were a mouse; I made you a cat, then a dog and next a lion; still you carry the heart of a mouse and fear everything under the sun. It would be nice if you go back and take your original form."
At once the lion changed into a mouse and lived with the sanyasi happily as before
Everyone is ambitious by nature and gets frustrated in non fulfillment of desires. One should ever resign to the will of God.
(In the Company of avatar Meher Baba, pp. 162-164 1988, 1992 © M. R. Dhakephalkar)
56-THE STORY-OF NARDA & HOUSEHOLD
Once, Narada was sauntering in a town singing the glory of Lord Vishnu on his lyre. He noted with satisfaction a house-holder performing a religious act and felt glad that the inhabitants of the earth were loving God. He stepped into the house. The house-holder was overjoyed at this windfall and received Narada with deference.
Narada was given a place of honour at the feast that followed. On hearing that the host was not blessed with children, Narada rose to his feet and refused to accept food. He went post haste to Lord Vishnu and complained of the injustice done to his devotee.
Lord Vishnu said, "I know nothing about his issues. Go to Chitra gupta, he will tell you about his future — whether he will have issues or not."
Wasting no time, Narada hurried to Chitra gupta and referred the matter to him. Chitragupta verified the records and said, "Sorry, no issues in this life." Narada became sullen.
Now the scene changes to earth. It is midnight. A sadhu goes about the streets begging for food proclaiming that whosoever gives him bread will be granted children — one for one bread, two for two loaves of bread and so on.
This falls into the ears of the childless house-holder. He invites the sadhu into his house and bids his wife give food to the hungry sadhu. She readily consents and serves him four hot loaves of bread and also offers him delicious dishes. The sadhu is well satisfied and while departing gives his benediction, "You will have four children in fulfillment of my promise."
The pious house-holder is blessed with four children.
Once again Narada calls on the house-holder and finds to his surprise four children running and playing in the house. He questions the house-holder about the children. Pleasantly surprised at the episode Narada makes a dash to Vaikuntha to call for the Lord's explanation.
"What sort of divinity are you! I found four sons with the house-holder quite contrary to Chitragupta's account."
Lord Vishnu smiles and says, "True, there were no issues in the life of this religious man. But he obtained the blessings of a man who loved Me all his life. So, if My devotee gives a certain blessing, I must carry it out because of the love of the devotee for Me.
"Narada, you are My greatest devotee and an eternal lover. Had you given blessings to him, I would have certainly fulfilled your wish. So, even though there were no issues for the man, because of My love for the devotees and to keep up their words, I had to do it. I always see that the words of My devotees come true.
Avatar or Sadguru is slave of His lover. Avatar or Sadgurus never allows His lover to let him down.
(In the Company of Avatar Meher Baba, pp. 162-164, 1988, 1992 © M. R. Dhakephalkar)
57-THE STORY OF PIRAN-E-PIR DASTAGIR
Baba added, "The aspirant who sees the divine hallucination can be helped by a Perfect Master, pir or wali." He ended with this tale about Piran-e-Pir Dastagir:
This is a story about the knowledge and power of the Qutub. There was once a Muslim Perfect Master named Piran-e-Pir Dastagir in Baghdad. He was a Qutub and loved a boy very much. The boy loved his father very much. At the age of seven years, the boy's father died and the boy joined the Qutub.
One day, twelve years later, the Qutub Dastagir was in an exceptionally pleasant mood and told the boy that he would grant whatever he desired. The foolish boy, instead of asking for God-realization, requested his father be risen back from the dead.
Dastagir repeated the same question three times, but the foolish boy asked only for his father. The Qutub granted his wish, and the boy found his father alive and lovingly embraced him.
Now see the power and knowledge of the Qutub. In order to make the boy's father alive, who died twelve years before; he had to make innumerable alterations in an instant, because his father must have been connected with so many relatives and friends, who in turn were connected with many others. In short, to make a seemingly small alteration, the Perfect Master has to make innumerable alterations in the universe.
Avatar or Sadguru (God personified) has power to change one’s destiny. It very rare for which Avatar or Sadguru had to make numerous adjustments in sanskaras of souls connected with the soul whose destiny is altered.
58-THE STORY OF SABIR SAHEB
Touching on Sabir Saheb of Iran and his spiritual attainments, Baba stated:
Sabir was staying with his maternal uncle and had much wealth. Once, his mother asked him to prepare a vast amount of food and feed the poor. For twelve years he kept on feeding others, but during this time, he was living only on figs. He had become quite weak, and once his mother asked why he was not taking food cooked for others. He replied that he was told he should cook for and feed others, and so, whatever he was preparing, he was not eating himself.
Once, Sabir saw a flash of the divine light, and was so merged in it that he remained in that state of bliss for a year and a half. When he came to, he found himself sitting under a tree eating a fig. Such a state is called mukam-e-hairat (divine enchantment caught between the third and fourth planes]. He got that flash of bliss and became dazed. Can you understand his condition? It is infinite bliss, continuous bliss, eternal bliss, but not in ordinary human consciousness. It is infinite bliss, infinite knowledge, infinite power, but he cannot use them. Sabir had that Experience, and only a rare one knows what it is.
Infinite bliss is permanent and perennial. Happiness of worldly pleasures is temporary and fleeting. Worldly pleasures are nothing compared to infinite bliss of God.
(Lord Meher, pp-3247-1953)
59-THE STORY OF SAINT ZIKARIA.
On December 2nd, Rustomji Ratanshah, his wife and daughter-in-law came to see Baba in Kandy. Baba met them in the men's quarters and then took the two women to meet the women mandali. As he brought them in, a song was playing on the radio entitled, What Do You Know of Love? Baba repeated the refrain and asked the women:
What do you know of love? This love on the radio is broadway love, but what do you know of real love?
Here is a story of an example of that love. There was a great saint named Zikaria. He would always do what pleased God. Once in a dream, God ordered him to sit under a certain tree. When he awakened, he went and sat there and never moved for five years, in spite of tears and pleading from his family and friends. Hearing about this, the king of the place sent his men, ordering Zikaria to come to him, but the saint would not budge. The king then ordered his men to saw him in half if he did not obey, and Zikaria let himself be sawed without moving!
This is an instance of great, real love, obeying God's order in a dream. And here you have God in person, who asks you to do such little things, and you cannot do it!
There is no trace of fear in true love for God..
(Lord Meher, 1st. ed., Bhau Kalchuri, Vol. 7, p. 2647)
60-THE STORY OF SAKHU BAI
Sakhu was her given name. From childhood, she was a devotee of Lord Krishna and spent her private hours alone in worship. Misfortune befell her; she was married to an unkind man who had no religious inclination. Her mother-in-law was a cruel woman who showed no fear of God. She harassed Sakhu terribly, scorned her devotions and kept her overworked maintaining the household. Sakhu's duties became so many that she was hardly allowed time to eat and sleep.The following story of Sakhubai should interest those who long to know the lives of real saints:
One day, after she had an inner experience, Sakhu escaped the house and left on pilgrimage to Pandharpur to have darshan of Vithal (Lord Krishna). A very large celebration was being held there, and pilgrims were praying for a manifestation of Krishna.
It is legendary in India that when one's love is true and devotion is pure, statues and pictures of the Lord and Gods come alive.
Meanwhile, the mother-in-law had no idea that she had gone, for the Lord Himself had taken the form of Sakhu and was doing all the household chores. When some people returned to the village from Pandharpur, they told the mother-in-law that they had seen Sakhu there. She could not believe them! She went to find Sakhu, but Krishna had disappeared — no one was in the house!
The mother-in-law went in search of Sakhu. To her surprise, she found Sakhu in the festive procession. Upon inquiry, people informed her that it was true that Sakhu was returning from Pandharpur with them. The mother-in-law then realized that the Lord himself had done all the work in the house while Sakhu was absent, and she repented. From that time on, Sakhu's devotion was recognized as that of a saint. She was reverently called Sakhubai, and she led many Hindus into Krishna's fold.
Avatar or Sadguru (personified God) is slave of His devotees. He takes over the responsibility of His devotees and plays the role of His devotees in exigency.
61-THE STORY OF SHAMS-E-TABRIZ
Baba had forbidden Aloba to stare at him. Each day, Baba would catch him at it, reprove him severely and have the Prayer of Repentance said. Once when Baba caught Aloba looking at him, after scolding him and then forgiving him again, Baba pleaded, "Can't you help Me even a little? You love Me; but help Me in My work!
Yet, Baba's daily castigation of Aloba for staring at him went on. It went to such an extent that it became difficult for Aloba even to glance at Baba. On account of this, Aloba was so distressed that he found it impossible to sleep. One day, Baba remarked, "You are growing old. Why do you look so tormented?"
Aloba now pleaded, "I am unable to follow your smallest instruction which causes you to get upset. Because of it, I cannot sleep at night.”
Baba corrected him, "Why use your head? Just do as I tell you! By becoming wise, you yourself come to trouble!" Citing the following instance, Baba related:
Once a tipsy man, like yourself, came in contact with the Perfect Master Shams-e-Tabriz, and the man prayed to the Master to guide him on the Path. Shams advised him to do as he told him, without altering his original instructions by using his common sense. But the man could not refrain from doing so. Once, both of them came to a river bank. They wanted to cross the river, but it was flooded. There was no way to go across it.
So the man asked Shams how they should proceed. Shams told him: "Follow me, repeating 'Shams, Shams!' And while saying this, Shams stepped into the river and began crossing it. The man followed with "Shams, Shams, Shams!" on his lips.
After a while, he noticed that Shams, too, was saying something. Listening closely he heard Shams repeating "Allah, Allah! Allah!" and saw that the river was parting for him. So the man thought: "When Shams is saying 'Allah, Allah!' why should I say “Shams, Shams?”
And using his powers of reasoning, he stopped the repetition the Master had given him and began saying "Allah, Allah!" and was thus drowned!
Baba concluded, "Aloba, I have told you a thousand times: do as I say and don't use your discrimination or discretion. You come to trouble by doing against My orders.”
Aloba was always in such a hurry to carry out Baba's orders that even before Baba had finished giving them, without listening fully to the instructions; he would start to execute them.
One night, Baba dictated these poetic lines to Bhau.
One night, "We walked so fast that even while nearing the Goal We could not check our speed and went past it!
There is great power in the name of Avatar or Sadguru. The word uttered by Avatar or Sadguru is always true and never fails.
62-THE SYMBOLISM OF THE COCONUT FRUIT (SIMILE)
The symbolism of the coconut fruit, conventionally offered to the Master in certain areas, may be explained as follows.
The outer threads on the hard cover of the coconut represent the physical body. The outer hard covering represents the subtle body with all its surging impressional desires. The inner kernel in the coconut represents the mind with seeds of impressions. And the inmost water is essentially not different from the water of the ocean, from which it is ultimately soaked up by the roots of the trees on the shore. It may therefore be likened to a portion of divinity itself.
Now, because of the sheaths of the inner kernel, the outer cover and the thick layer of threads, the inmost water remains completely hidden from view; and the identity of the inmost being of the coconut with the ocean itself is not even suspected. So the coconut, with all the covers, is symbolically offered to the Master in order that he may reveal the inmost essence of the soul as it is.
The Master takes off the threads on the exterior one by one. This is like relieving the burdened mind of ordinary men. It corresponds to taking from them all bodily attachments one by one and ultimately taking away from them the attachment to body itself. Destruction of the body through physical death does not solve any problem, because the ego-mind grows new bodies in new incarnations.
Through utter non-attachment to the physical body, the soul is relieved of the limitations of the outermost covering, symbolized by the threads of the coconuts. When the hindrance of the physical body is removed the body begins to function consciously. This is the state of the Yogis.
But the sheath of the subtle body, with all its surging desires, has also to be shed. This corresponds to the Master's breaking open the outer hard covering of the coconut. And when the obstructively of the subtle body is removed, the soul begins to function consciously through its mental ego-body. This is the stage of the advanced souls.
The ego-mind corresponds to the inner kernel of the coconut; and the Master has to break open even this inner kernel to take the soul to its own essence, which, in this analogy, corresponds to the inmost water in the coconut. Breaking the inner kernel means that the mind of the person ceases to function completely. It comes to a standstill since the seeds that activate the ego-mind are all burnt up.
When the hindrance of the ego-mind is removed, the Master, as it were, drinks the inmost sweet water and makes it unite with the ocean of life that he is. Lover and Beloved have become one consciously.
Outer hard cover and inner kernel of coconut is symbolic of subtle body and ego mind.
(Sparks of truth, pp. 13-14, C. D. Deshmukh, 1971 © Universal Spiritual League in America, Inc.)
63-TRIAL OF A SEEKER BY SADGURU
Baba narrated this story:
A yogi once went before a Sadguru with a request to be shown something, such as God, the heavens or the planes. The Sadguru asked him to stay near him and take the name of Sitaram only for one hour. The yogi took this trial to be very trivial, thinking what possible great reward such a small trial would give. Although it is very difficult, practically impossible, to stay before a Sadguru even for a short time.
Reading his mind, the Sage said, "I have a still easier course, should you prefer. Go sit under a tree for twelve years observing strict fast and I will show you what you want."
This satisfied the yogi, who thought it would be a hard trial at least that would surely bring a good and substantial reward.
The story, in short, means that it is very hard to stay with a saint (who may be compared to fire!). Not only this, but in spite of a strong determination in the beginning to "stay" at all costs, one would feel (compelled) to go away at the first available opportunity, if the Sadguru turns the key internally, (despite) making an external show to keep one near.
It is extremely difficult for disciple to stand in trail of an Avatar or Sadguru. One cannot love Avatar or Sadguru as He is ought to be loved without His gift of love.
64-WHY BABA SOMETIMES GETS ANGRY (SIMILE)
Once, when Baba was in an open mood, Sarosh asked Him, "Why do You sometimes get so angry with us?"
I am never violent or angry. For Me anger, pride, lust, happiness or miseries do not exist. Nothing like that exists for Me. But when I appear angry at someone, it is his anger that expresses itself through Me. I am the medium through which both your good and bad show themselves. You see your own face reflected in the mirror. Whatever you look like — this is what you see in the mirror. The image is not only there in the mirror, but in the face itself. The mirror is unchanging. If the face is not good, can it appear differently in the mirror? What you see in the mirror is your exact likeness — it is not the likeness of the mirror!
Using another analogy, Baba continued:
A ball thrown against a wall rebounds to you with the same force with which you throw it. The wall is always at a standstill — absolutely stationary. You receive whatever resulting force you use in throwing the ball against the wall.
In conclusion, however I appear to you, it is only your own reflected image. I am always still and unchangeable — like the wall or the mirror.
Avatar Meher Baba’s anger is the reflection of our ego.
65-WOMEN STONED BY HER DAUGHTER
Once Eruch said something bad to Baba in frustration, Baba related following story:
A woman in a village once cohabitated with a man who was not her husband and the people came to know of it. It was the custom then to punish such a crime by making the adulteress sit in a circle. Every villager would then pick up a stone and strike her.
The woman was made to sit in the town square and the villagers began stoning her one by one. When the woman's daughter's turn came, she could not bring herself to stone her own mother. Instead, she picked up a rose and threw it at her.
But the rose wounded the woman much more than all the stones combined, because it came from her daughter, one whom she dearly loved and had raised so tenderly.
Similarly, others' "stones" do not hurt me as deeply as your rose.
The more you love someone the more you are hurt on his/her betrayal.
STORIES BY DISCIPLES OF AVATAR MEHER BABA
66-A GOOD LAUGH FOR BABA
Sometimes people ask, "What was the most humorous event you can remember with Meher Baba?" There were many humorous incidents I can recall. And Baba's sense of humor was so perfect that even relatively minor things could become a source of great amusement for us all. But I happen to recall one time when Baba was greatly amused at something.
It so happened that we were on a mast tour. On this particular occasion we were traveling by car, and I was driving. Baba sat beside me on the front seat. We were driving through a town and we were just on the outskirts when the crowd on the road became very dense. There were so many people in front of us that we could barely move.
I was concentrating on inching the car forward, trying to find a path through the sea of humanity, impatient because Baba was always in hurry when we travelled, and I thought He would not be pleased at this unexpected delay. But as I was driving I suddenly became aware of Baba's body shaking. I could feel the vibrations of the car seat, and I glanced over and saw that Baba was laughing heartily.
In fact, more heartily than I had ever seen Him laugh before. Of course, Baba made no sound when He laughed, but He would go red in the face and His body would shake with the laughter contained inside. When I saw Baba in such a mood, I was so surprised that I asked Him why He was laughing. Baba pointed to the side of the road.
Up ahead, where Baba was pointing, was a shrine of some saintly person. That was why there were so many people on the road. Apparently it was the anniversary of this saintly person's death and so many people were coming to bow down and pay their respects.
"Yes, Baba," I said, not able to see what was so funny. Baba pointed to someone in the crowd. There were so many people it was hard for me to know whom Baba was pointing to. Baba gestured that the man was wearing a hat and a coat but there were many who were. "That man?" I asked as I described the man I thought Baba meant.
Baba shook His head, "No," and pointed again, "Oh, that man who's just about to bow at the shrine?" Baba nodded, "Yes," and then gestured, "He is bowing down to himself."
From this I understood that in a previous life, that man had been the saintly person that all had come to honour. But see the fun. The saintly person, in a new incarnation, had also come and was now bowing down in reverence to his own tomb! This fun in illusion was a great joke for Baba.
One is not made to know his past incarnations to get fresh sanskaras of improved actions in new life. For a Avatar or Sadguru, past incarnations are like open book and He can enjoy the humorous situation of a man bowing down to his mazar of his past life.
67-AN OLD STORY BY HAZRAT INAYAT KHAN
Many, many years ego, Moses needed to talk with God, so he started up the trail that led to the summit of Mount Sinai. On his journey he came upon an old drunk sitting by the side of the trail. Now, this old drunk was “Three sheets to the wind: and he saw Moses walking and he cried out in loud voice “Hay Moses where you are going?” and Moses said, “To talk with the lord” and the drunk said “Hey, tell God “hey” for me” and Moses shook his head at the old drunk and said “I will brother, I will.” Well, a little farther up the path, Moses came upon a priest. The priest was sitting in all his fine regalia, very proper, very proud and a little condescending and he saw brother Moses coming up the path and he said to Moses, “Mosses where goeth thou?” and Moses said “To talk with the lord” and the grand priest said “Tell the Lord that I am keeping His covenant and I will await the great anticipation the reward of heaven” and Moses said “I will.”
Moses gets to the top of Mount Sinai and toward the end of his visit he mentions coming across the drunk and the priest and the Lord say “I am aware of both” and Moses said “but father what is to become of them?” and God said “The drunk is headed for Hell and the priest for heaven” and Moses says “Yes Lord.”
Well coming down from Mount Sinai Moses walks by priest and the priest says “Did you give God the message?” and Moses says “Yes” and then the grand priest says “It shall be.” Well, down the trail a bit he sees the drunk still three sheets to the wind and the drunk sees Moses and he takes another drink and call out “Hey Moses did you tell God “hey’ for me?” and Moses says, “Oh yes brother and God says you are headed for Hell.” Well, the drunk heard none of this; he leapt up and did a little jig, laughed, had another swig of booze ad just kept dancing and laughing and crying out “The lords actually thought of me!” Well, Moses finally grabbed the drunk and said “But the Lord said you are bound for Hell” and the drunk said “Let’s have a drink, the Lord remembered me! Well, Moses went on.
Many months later the Lord called Moses to Sinai and on his walk to the summit Moses came by where the drunk had been and all he saw was a discarded liquor flask; the drunk was no-where to be seen. And a farther up where the priest sat, the place was also abandoned. Well, Moses went up to the summit and after finishing his business with God, Moses matter of factly said, “Lord, whatever happened to the priest and the drunkard?” and the Lord said “Why Moses they are both dead.” and Moses said “But Lord what happened to them?” The Lord said, “Why, the drunk is in Paradise and the priest is in the Hell!” Moses said “But Lord, how can that be?” And the Lord said “The priest thought he had made a deal. I do not make deal! And the simple drunk, he rejoiced just at being remembered. He expected nothing, he could have cared less about Heaven or Hell, and he was happy at just being remembered and nothing for drunk became the everything.”
One cannot claim to deserve for God–realisation however sincere he may be in his devotion to God. It much depends on depth of his love for his Master, great patience and desirelessness of even God realisation.
68-BLIND MEN AND ELEPHANT (SIMILE)
"Once, there were four blind men who were sitting and talking among themselves.
"'I have heard that the elephant is a very big animal,' said the first man.
"And the second man said, 'People say that he is such a big animal that he needs a lot of food. Because it is not possible for anyone to supply a lot of food to this animal, he eats leaves and branches.'
"The third man suggested, 'I want to 'see' this big animal. Why not? I am very anxious to do so.”
“I'm also very, very anxious to see this animal," the fourth man said. "But if he is hungry, how can you can provide it food?”
"And the third man replied, 'We want to see the animal wholeheartedly. We do have not to provide him food.”
"As they were just talking, fortunately an elephant and his mahout (elephant keeper) came along. The mahout heard the blind men talking, and he thought, 'These people are blind. And they are very anxious to see an elephant. Why should not I show it to them?”
"So the mahout brought the elephant to the blind men and said, 'Friends, I have brought an elephant. Now you can determine how big an animal he is.”
"So the four blind men went to see the elephant. One was touching his legs. Another was touching his tail. The third one was touching his trunk, and the forth one was touching his ear.
"Afterwards, they were so happy and told the mahout, 'Thank you very much, friend. We have seen an elephant. Now you can take him away.”
“And the mahout left.
"The blind men again sat down together, and the one who had touched the elephant's tail said, 'The elephant is like rope.”
"But the man who had touched his legs, he said, 'No, the elephant is not like rope. He is like a pole.”
"Then the man who had touched the elephant's ear said, 'No, the elephant is like a carpet.”
"And the one who had touched the trunk of the elephant said, “No the elephant is like a serpent.”
"So the blind men started fighting among themselves. One would say that the elephant is like a pole, another would say, “he is like a rope.”
"The third man would say that the elephant is like a carpet, and the forth one would say that he is like a serpent. They would fight and fight and none of the blind men would consider that he himself was wrong. Each one thought that he was correct.
One finds different religions in the world and everyone think that his concept of God and religion is the best. They do not agree with each other and fight with each other in order to prove themselves right. But they are like the blind men who cannot see the elephant and believe that the elephant is like a rope or pole, or carpet or serpent. This will go on and on and there will be no end to it unless one is cured of blindness with the help of a Master. Then only one will see the elephant (God) clearly and there will be no fight
(Bhau’s awakening, 1 st August, 2001. Part-1)
69-BOY FOLLOWS MASTER’S INSTRUCTIONS)
"There was a boy who loved God very much. His parents were very worried, and they thought, that if they could get him married, he would be alright. So they arranged for him to be married. The day he was married, he left the house. He was moving here and there. Afterwards, he found a Perfect Master and lived with him and served him. After some years, the master asked the boy, 'You have been with me for years, and you don't know the city which is only three miles from here. I want you to go there and enjoy tonight. Eat good food and then go to a prostitute.'
"The boy did not understand what he would do with a prostitute. But he had to obey the master. So he went to the city. The master had given him money, and according to instructions, he went to a restaurant, and he ate. This was quite a different thing for him, but he did it under obedience to the master. He had no desire; he was just following the master's orders. After the restaurant, he went to a prostitute. And what happened? He had no desire, but he wanted to follow the instructions of the master. He was with the prostitute in her room, just sitting there. She had covered her face, so he said, 'Show me your face.'
"She did so.
"And what did he find?
"She was his wife. And then the boy understood why the master had asked him to go to a prostitute. He told his wife, 'I did an injustice to you. Please forgive me.'
"The wife told him that she had been leading a pure life, but culprits had caught her, and sold her there the very same day. Then he took her to the master. The boy had no lustful desire. He had longing for God and that's why he was serving the master. And then his wife, too, started serving the master.
An order from Avatar or Sadguru always carries a hidden meaning for the benefit of disciple therefore it should be followed without any doubt and hesitation.
70-CHANGDEV AND GYANESHWAR
"Once there was a yogi named Changdev, who was living in Pune and Ahmednagar. He had many followers. He would perform miracles, and more and more people followed him.
"There was another person, Gyaneshwar. He was not a yogi, but a jivan mukta.
"A jivan mukta is a person who is God-realized and comes down to Creation consciousness. He does not have the work of a Perfect Master. He can make one person a jivan mukta like himself, and that is the duty he does. It is a most blissful state. The jivan mukta knows what is happening in Creation, but at the same time, he has no headaches to look after.
"Gyaneshwar was staying a few miles from Pune, in a place called Alandi. He would live quietly and not perform any miracles.
"One day, a man from Changdev came to Gyaneshwar and said, 'There is a yogi named Changdev who performs many miracles, and many people follow him. Why don't you perform some miracles, so that people may also follow you?'
“Gyaneshwar did not say a word.
"The man felt very disappointed. He returned to Changdev and told the yogi, 'There is a man named Gyaneshwar. He does not do anything. He keeps quiet. He does not perform miracles. Why don't you write him and tell him that if he has no power he should not call himself a jivan mukta?
"Changdev heard this and sent a messenger to Gyaneshwar asking whether the latter had any power. If he did have powers, why did he not perform any miracles?
"The messenger delivered the message to Gyaneshwar, who remained quiet for some time. In reply, he sent a blank paper to Changdev. When Changdev received the blank paper, he became very upset. 'Gyaneshwar is insulting me,' he said. "But now I must show my power to him.”
"He called his followers and ordered them, 'You all get ready. We have to go to Alindi. I will ride a tiger, and you follow me. Gyaneshwar has insulted me. Now, when he sees me riding the tiger, he will run away. I must show my power to him.'
"A very big procession assembled and started towards Alindi. Changdev, full of pride, was riding a tiger.
"What did he see in the sky?
“Gyaneshwar was flying, standing on a slab of stone!
"When he saw this, Changdev could not believe it. He dismounted from the tiger and was looking at Gyaneshwar. Gyaneshwar came down upon the earth and embraced Changdev, whose pride disappeared.
Gyaneshwar sent Changdev to his sister, Muktabai, who was a Perfect Master.
"And Muktabai gave Changdev God realization.
"Yogic power can only work on the animate only; it doesn't work on the inanimate. When Gyaneshwar was flying on the slab of stone, Changdev realized that Gyaneshwar had real power. He could influence the inanimate too.
(Bhau’s first awakening, 28th August, 2002, part I)
71- CONCENTRATE ONLY ON ONE GOAL
A young, handsome well educated man was one day enjoying a cup of coffee at a sidewalk café, when he suddenly saw young women of extra-ordinary beauty. The first glance was sufficient for him to fall deeply in love with her. Realising that she might the next moment disappear, and that he must therefore move swiftly, he boldly approached her saying, “With my very first glance of you, I have fallen so very deeply in love with you, that I know that I cannot live without you for a second. Without you, even death would be better than life. I beg you to accept me as your lover and husband.
The young women quietly looked at him, and said, “Yes, I find you too very handsome, and of a good character and disposition. I see no reason why should not accept your proposal. But there is however this condition: never set eyes on my sister. She is so very beautiful, that compared to her, I am but an ugly duckling. If this condition is acceptable to you, then I am willing to marry you. The man replied, “Where is this sister of yours?” ‘She is standing behind you.’ As the man turned around, the young women gave him a resounding slap, and said. A moment ago you were swearing eternal love, that you could not live without me for an even a second, and the very next moment you turned to look at another women! Your profound over-whelming love should make you forget everything except me, Go away you hypocrite! I have no time for such love as yours.
If one wants Beloved Avatar Meher Baba, then he must have total concentration on one and only goal of loving Him.
(The divine humanity of Meher Baba volume III, Bill Le page pp-137)
72-CREEDS AND THE INNER PATH
C. D. Deshmukh
Once upon a time a sage sent his son to a debtor's house to recover a loan. The son was advised never to sleep under the shade of a tree, or pass the night in a city during the journey, or sleep at the debtor's house. But the sage also instructed the son to obey the commands of an experienced guide, if perchance he happened to meet such a one.
The boy started on his journey and by sunset he met an aged person, who seemed to him to be a man of much experience. The old man said that he too wanted to go to the same destination and offered his company to the boy, which he willingly accepted. After some time they came to a big and shady tree where the old man decided to halt for the night. The boy remembered his father's words that he should obey the experienced guide. So he raised no objection to sleeping under the shade of a tree, though this was against the general command which he had received.
He soon fell asleep and was long in dreamland. The old man, however, kept watch, and when at midnight a big snake appeared under the tree, the vigilant guide soon killed the snake; and the night passed off safely.
Next morning the boy and the guide resumed their journey. At night, they came to the big city. The old guide decided to pass the night there. It was contrary to the general advice of the boy's father. But the boy again accepted the order of his guide and agreed to spend the night in the city.
The king of the city had a daughter. Anyone who got married to her never came back alive after the wedding night. This happened invariably in the case of all who were successively married to the princess. And when this fact became known to the inhabitants of the city, no one in the city was willing to marry the princess. So the king decided his daughter would marry a young man who came from outside the city.
When the king heard of the arrival of the two strangers, he accordingly summoned the boy to his palace. The old guide, however, gave some definite instructions to the boy before he was taken from him. When the boy found himself in the royal harem he got bewildered. But he scrupulously stuck to the instructions of his guide and the result was that he passed a safe night and he was the only one like him to tell the tale next morning. He was allowed to go his own way. He returned to his guide and they again resumed their journey onward.
Ultimately when both reached their destination the debtor of the boy paid back the loan. The boy was about to return immediately, but the old guide insisted upon their availing themselves of the hospitality offered by the debtor to spend the night under his roof. The boy who had all the while met no harm by following the order of the guide decided not to disobey him even this time.
After supper the host inquired as to where they would prefer to sleep at night. And the old man requested that they be allowed to sleep on the verandah. Both slept there for a while. But at midnight the old guide awakened the boy in his care and asked him to come with him inside the house.
Two sons of the debtor were sleeping inside. The old man requested them to change places with them, since they, being new to the place, could not withstand the cold outside. The sons of the debtor agreed to the suggestion and obliged the guests. In the morning when the boy got up he witnessed a gruesome tragedy. The host was wailing and weeping over the murders of his two sons who, he declared, were killed by robbers that night.
The fact was that the debtor himself, in his uncontrolled greed and miserliness, had committed the foul deed, believing that the two persons on the varandah were the visitors and hoping to get back the money which he paid the boy.
When the old guide started their return journey, the boy began to assert that all the restrictions which his father had put on him were groundless, since he discovered through his own experience that every time he disregarded those restrictions he came to no grief. The old man smiled and reminded him that among other things, his father had also given him the instruction to follow an experienced guide. The boy, however, felt sure that the other instructions imposed by his father were meaningless.
Then the old guide discussed all the incidents on the journey and convinced the boy that he would surely have come to grief and even might have lost his very life by disregarding the initial advice given by his father, had it not been for the fact that he was saved every time by the intervention of the one whom he had accepted as his guide.
Master is our real companion. He can help and guide us in our worldly and spiritual life.
(Spark of the truth, pp. 16-18, C. D. Deshmukh, 1971 © The Universal Spiritual League in America)
73-DESCENT OF LORD IN HUMAN FORM
A Mogul emperor of India was very interested in metaphysics, philosophies, love for God relation between and His creation, so forth. His prime minister was Hindu and the emperor would ask this minister many questions concerning the things that interested him.
One day emperor said to him: “You say that your God is all-powerful.”
“Yes sir, but your God and mine are one. They are not different.”
“I know you say that your God and my God is one. We too only know of one Allah. But why it is that our God is so powerful that He does not need to descend on earth to protect or awaken His children? Our God is so powerful that wherever He be, His wish is enough. He can control His creation without descending on earth. Whereas, your God has to descend on earth in order to awaken and help the creation. Don’t you think that your God is a little bit less powerful than our Allah?
“Oh, no!” said the prime minister.“You are absolutely misinformed about this.”
“Then why it is that our God never descends on earth?”
“My lord, your question is such that I need some time to answer it. I must have a vacation from the court.”
“Yes, have your vacation and give me solid proof of what you say about my God and yours”
After some time the prime minister returned and the emperor and he were enjoyed to see each other again. The minister suggested that the emperor take the whole court for a holiday an outing by boat on the river. The emperor had a deep a deep respect for his minister and readily agreed to a day of relaxation in each other’s company. The prime minister had made all arrangements, the boats were ready, and also the prince, the emperor’s son, was to go with them in one of the boats.
They set off and it was very pleasant on the river. Suddenly there was commotion and a shout, “The prince has fallen over board!” The emperor jumped to his feet and began taking of his coat. But the minister said, “Why do you go in? There are so many here. See they were jumping into water.” “Leave me alone He will be drowned. I must get to my boy.” exclaimed the emperor, and jumped in. So of course the prime minister had to go with him. They floundered around and were eventually pulled out, the shocked emperor crying out, “Where is my prince?”
Quickly, the minister answered: Pardon, sir, but there is no prince.”
“But I saw him in the other boat. “Where is he?” “Sir, the prince was not here at all, there was only a wax replica of him. It was all to show you the answer of your problem.” “What do you mean? Where is the answer?”
“You are emperor, sir. A word from you and a million people would have jumped in to save your son. But you were not satisfied –you yourself wanted to plunge in, in order to save your son. You didn’t feel satisfied, contented, unless and until you yourself plunged in to save him, retrieve him, redeem him. That is why the Hindus believe in the descent of the Lord. The Lord descending into form is known as Avatar-Reality descending into illusion. “
The minister continued:”But how can the reality and illusion go hand in hand? They cannot. This act of compassion is so unfathomable that although He is a Reality, He clothes Himself in the body so that as Reality He does not shatter illusion. He wants to awaken us to the nature of illusion. If the illusion is shattered, the whole game is over. He does not want that. How can He awaken us to the illusion? He clothes Himself to such an extent that light of reality is not shed into illusion, and yet the warmth of the Reality is felt.”
In the descent of God as Avatar in human form, there is warmth, which gives us the feeling that something is there. The Avatar comes in our midst, allows illusion to remain and yet gives the feeling that it is illusion. He awakens us.”
(Over the years with Meher Baba, Bill Le Page, ed. 1999, pp-107)
There was a man who was an alcoholic. His parents were very unhappy and were always after him to give up drinking. One day, the father decided heart to heart talk with his son. When the two of them were alone, the father asked the son, “Why do you drink so much? Is there any kind of sorrow in your heart? Is there something you want in life and are disappointed in not getting? Is that why you drink so much?”
The son said no, that wasn’t it. The father persisted, “then why do you drink? Don’t you know it causes us so much pain to see you in this state? Not to mention that it will ruin your health too. Why do you drink so much?”
The boy turned helplessly to his father and confessed, “I am addicted to it, dad. I have tried giving it up several times and have failed. I just can’t control the craving.”
The father thought about this and came up with an idea which he thought might help his son. He told him, “Look, I will help you give up drinking.”
The son looked surprised. “How can you help me? He asked.
The father replied, “Every day I will sit with you and drink the same amount of alcohol that you drink. We will do this for one month. At the end of one month I will stop drinking completely and that should inspire you to stop along with me. We shall do it together.”
The son agreed to father’s suggestion. So from the next day, they started drinking together. Initially, the father was drinking the same amount as the son, but as the time passed, the son noticed that the father was drinking more than him and appeared to be enjoying it. When thirty days were over, the son expected his father to stop, but the father continued drinking. After several days passed, thinking that his father had lost track of time, the son said, “Dad, you remember we made a promise when we started drinking?”
The father replied, “Yes my son, I remember.”
Do you know that more than thirty days have passed by and that you were supposed to stop drinking after thirty days in order to help me stop drinking?”
The father replied, “Yes my son, I remember all that. But I did not know when I made all those promises that alcohol can be so intoxicating, so addictive and so much fun. Now that I know what it is, I have decided not to give up. If you wish to give up drinking, you can do so, but I won’t give it up.”
Avatar Meher Baba gave drink of His love which intoxicated mandali. They got addicted to Meher Baba’s presence and could not live without it.
75-DRAUPADI AND LORD KRISHNA
Draupadi was wife of the five Pandava brothers. When they were undergoing exile in the forest, Draupadi also accompanied them. She had a boon from Gods, a pot that produced food. With this, she could feed any number of people and the food never be exhausted. There was, however, one condition: once Draupadi ate, the pot would produce no more food until the next meal. Utilizing this power, the Pandavas not only fed themselves while they were in exile, but they were often found to be feeding hundreds of sadhus, saints, and people visiting them. Their generosity became known to everyone.” ‘”One day, Durvasa Muni, with his thousand disciples, happened to be in the area and came to visit them. Now this muni was known for his great rage; when he stared at anyone with anger, the person would be reduced to ash; such was his power. When he approached the Pandavas, he told them to prepare meals for himself and his thousand disciples. In the meantime, he along with his disciples went to the river bank for a bath before the meal.
“When Draupadi heard of this, she was very worried for she had already eaten her meal and the pot would not produce any more at that moment. Knowing of the Muni’s rage she was very apprehensive for safety of the Pandavas.
“She cried out to Krishna for help. Krishna appeared and before Draupadi could say anything; Krishna said to her, I am very hungry today, so prepare for Me a meal immediately.”
“Hearing this, Draupadi started weeping. When Krishna asked her what was wrong, Draupadi told Him about the whole situation and said,” I have called you to help me in this crisis but , instead, You have added to my worries by asking me to give You a meal, knowing full well that the pot will not produce any more.”
“Krishna said, “Bring Me the pot and let Me see for Myself.”
“Draupadi brought the empty pot to Krishna who peeked inside and found a single morsel of food grain lying in one corner. He showed that to Draupadi and picked up and ate it, having eaten, He said her, and “Now My stomach is completely full and cannot eat any more.”
“At that precise moment, Durvasa Muni and his thousand disciples finished bathing and were approaching for their meal. Suddenly the Muni, along with his disciples, started to belch and their stomachs felt full as if they had eaten a very large meal. Their hunger disappeared and they left without coming for the meal they had demanded. In this way, Krishna saved Draupadi.”
Any small act of Avatar or Sadguru on gross plane has universal effect.
76-EVERYTHING IN LIFE IS DESTINED
It is said that one day there was a tussle in the heavens between Shankar the Lord and his consort Parvati. She was being reserved and silent and the Lord asked why she was cross with him. She said, “How indifferent, how callous you are to your devotees! And this has made me think- is your love for me so very great or you also callous with me?” The lord replied; “What is matter? How can I be callous? Everyone is looked after, everybody is provided for.” (As Meher Baba himself said once: I dare not to care for My lovers)
Parvati continued: “I assure you that you are callous and indifferent to your closest devotees.” “Why, what has happened? “ “Come and see.” she said. “There is devotee who spends every day chanting your name and living only what people give him to eat. He has left the world, he has nothing to provide his family, he has dedicated his life to you.” “Well, is that is his lot. And that is how it should be; it will promote his progress on the path to Me.”
She said: “No, I don’t believe in that. you must provide him with some worldly means because he is wholly and solely yours.” “What do you want Me to do, further than what I have already done in My omniscience?” “I would like to give him a lot of wealth.” “All right, I will give him lot of wealth because you want it that way.” It seems that even God has to submit to the wishes of the consort!
Well, the devotee used to take regular path from his hut to the market place where he would beg, and throught the day and night he would chant the name of the Lord. So while he was on the way to beg that day a thought came to his mind. I am getting older and the world seems to be changing; there does not seem to be the same comparison. What if I were to pose as being blind? Then they might give me more.
So on this very day when the Lord throws down from heavens a sack full of gold on to the path which devotee always takes, the devotee decides to practise blindness. He shuts his eyes and walks with them closed so that he can throw upon himself the mercy of mankind-and he walks right past the gold lying there. The Lord looks at Parvati and says: “See, that is law of karma.
Whatever is destined in one’s life, only that much he gets and no more?
(Over the years with Meher Baba, Bill Le Page, ed. 1999, pp-115)
77-FATHER AND SON
In a village there lived a father and son. The son’s mother died when she was delivering him, and the father brought the boy up. The father and son loved each other very much, and the son was so devoted to father that he would not leave him for a minute. Now and again, the father would consider how the son never left him for any change whatsoever, even for recreation or sightseeing. When the father would ask the son to go sightseeing, the son did not want to go. One day, the father thought of a plan to give some change in scenery to the son.
He said to him,” Your maternal uncle is about 50 miles from here, and I would like to see him. Will you come with me?”
The son said, “Of course, how can I leave you alone? I will go with you.”
“We have only one donkey. How can we both go?”
“I am quite young, and I can walk the distance,” the son said. “There is nothing difficult for me. I am strong.”
The father was very happy, and he thought that in this way his son would get a change. So early in the morning of the following day, they started on their journey. After traveling awhile, they came upon a village. The villagers stared at the pair as they travelled down the street.
The people said,” just see this man. He is riding the donkey, and he has no shame in seeing that young boy walk beside him.”
When the father heard this, he felt ashamed that he was riding while his son was walking.
So the father said, “Son, now you ride the donkey. I will walk for some time.”
Because people were laughing at them, the son, feeling ashamed, also agreed. The son and father switched places and the son was riding the donkey. They went a further distance and came upon anther village. There again, people started looking at them and speaking amongst themselves.
This time villagers said, “What kind of young man is, he that lets older man to walk while he rides the donkey like a prince? He has no shame.”
When the son heard this, he felt very ashamed. So the father decided that both of them should ride the donkey. They went further distance and came across another village.
There, too, people looked at them and said, “Just see their cruelty. Both of them ride the donkey, while the poor, dumb animal cannot say anything. How cruel they are!”
When father and son heard, they felt bad because they were being so cruel to the donkey. They decided then that both of them should walk and drag the donkey. Now sun was near setting, and they came across another village. Once again people looked at them and said, “What fools they, that they are dragging a donkey while they themselves are walking. They are so ignorant that they don’t even know that a donkey is meant for riding. They walk and drag the donkey.”
Now the father and son felt really confused. They were feeling ashamed and cruel and foolish all at the same time. As they passed through that village, the father and son decided to sit under tree, feeling overwhelmed from everything that everyone had said to them. Wherever they went they were found in the wrong by others. And they did not know how to proceed on their journey.
Just as they were thinking such thoughts, a saintly person cane by and he said to them, “Why are you sitting. They said, “We are thinking what to do.”
And the father told the saintly person what had taken place in the journey. “If you have any remedy for this situation, please let us know. We will act accordingly.”
The saintly person replied, “The reason that all this is happening because you want to please the people of the world. But this not possible because each person has their own ideas. Even though you did what they wanted, you are now confused and ashamed. They found you cruel and foolish. This is your weakness, because really you are neither. But if you continue to listen to the people as you travel from one village to the next, you will never be able to get your destination. Then you really would be foolish. Do not listen anymore to their chatter, but listen to God within you. He will guide you properly.
In Bhau’s words:
The father and son had not listened to the voice inside themselves, and so they were at loss as to what to do. All they could do was listen to everyone else. And that is why it is most important to listen to how Meher Baba is prompting one. That is the voice one must follow, otherwise one will not get the destination. But one should hear the voice one’s heart; one has to be very honest with him. Desires of every kind will always be in one’s mind, urging one to follow their lead. So one has to develop the discretion to distinguish between what is the voice of heart and what is the noise of mind and its innumerable desires. If one is not honest with himself one will be led by false modesty, thinking that one is leading a spiritual life. But what one will be leading only ideal life, and no real inner change will take place.
(Spiritual training programme –Bhau Kalchuri ed. 2005 pp-111-114)
78-FIGHT BETWEEN GOD AND DEVIL
There was once a duel between God and the Devil. It was over who could win over the souls of men or women the most. The devil agreed to the duel but asked God to give him some weapons with which he could tempt the souls on men. God gave the Devil material wealth, like property, jewelry, money etc. The Devil did not look pleased and said, “This is good nut not enough, for there are souls who would renounce this for the sake of your love.”
So the God gave him the weapon of addiction, such as wine, drugs, etc. The Devil still looked displeased and added, “This is better but there are souls who would renounce these pleasures for the sake of your love. The fight is uneven.
So the God gave him the weapon of sex. As soon as, the Devil received it, he was totally overjoyed and laughingly, he said to God, “I was waiting for you to make a mistake and give me something like this. With these weapons I can win almost every soul. You have lost the duel by your mistake.”
When the Devil said this, God realised His mistake and started weeping for He knew that now it would be difficult to win over the souls of men. It is these tears of God that fell into the hearts of men, wiping away their sins, making them look towards the source from where it came and, in the process, helping them to turn towards God.”
In words of Eruch:
There is constant duel between God and the Devil within everyone. Go within and recognize that it is all within you. On one hand, the temptations of materialistic possessions, addictions and sex are trying to entice your heart, and on the other hand, there is eternal bliss of God-realization calling out you.
Dr. Ghani Munsiff
Four travelers-a carpenter, a tailor, a goldsmith and a spiritual mendicant- became associated with each other. As their Journey through a dangerous tract of country infested with wild animals, at nightfall they decided to camp by roadside underneath a spreading tree. It was also arranged that each one of them should keep watch a part of the night against possible danger.
The first watch fell to the carpenter, who just to kill time took a twig from the tree, and using few instruments with him began carrying out human figure. by the time he finished the job of his watch for the night ended, waking up the tailor he retired.
Witnessing the fine craftsmanship of his companion, the tailor too felt like doing something to while away the time. He could think of nothing better than to give an exhibition of sartorial art. The result was a fully draped figure of a beautiful doll.
The third watchman, the goldsmith, could not help being impressed with what the two had done. With a few beads and pieces of wire, he adorned the figure round its neck and arms with what looked like jewellery.
The last one, the fakir, was greatly amused on seeing the beautiful piece of art, to finish which every one of his companions had contributed. At the same time he felt depressed at the thought of them looking down upon him because he was not able to contribute. In this frame of mind he began to pray ardently, saying; ‘Oh, God, my honour and shame is in your hands; don’t make me look small in eyes of my companions. Deign to put life into the image; you are Almighty and Powerful.”
The heart-felt prayer, rendered in humility and helplessness, was answered; the figure was miraculously transformed into a damsel, transcendently beautiful. In the morning a battle royal of fists and wits ensued among the companions, everyone claiming her for himself. The carpenter asserted priority of his claim on the originality of his idea; the tailor and goldsmith based their claim on development and beautification of the theme; the fakir flouted everyone on the ground of his miracle. To end impasse, they all decided to approach a Kazi (magistrate) for a decision. What a maze they found themselves in. struck by the unsurpassable charm and beauty of the damsel, Kazi himself wanted to possess her. He denounced the claimants as imposters and declared that she was his maid servant who had been missing since morning.
There was nothing left to do but to approach king, the final tribunal of justice in the hand. The heavenly glamour of the beauty before him disturbed the impartiality of the king. He declared the damsel was one of his wives from the harem and threatened everyone with punishment for molesting her. This was more than they had bargained for and a tumultuous uproar ensued.
A sage happened to pass by and enquired as to the cause of the trouble. Taking in the situation, he suggested all should go to the place where the matter first developed and where, perhaps, even the tree itself might suggest the solution. No sooner had the king, Kazi and all led by the sage approached the spot, then there appeared an opening in the tree and the phantom of their fantasy disappeared in it. Thus eluded, the claimants, one after another, sulked away, crestfallen.
In words of Ghani Munsiff:
Such is the predicament of man on the earth. No sooner does he become “grown up” than all sort of imposters and claimants crowd upon him for recognition. The parents demand filial duty for his upbringing, the teachers insist upon respect to them for his education, the wife and children claim his love, the community his services, he country his patriotism and the Church for saving his soul from damnation. Distracted and torn by different passions, to escape it all man takes refuge in a vicious circle of births and deaths endangering hopes and disappointments seemingly eternal, he at long last comes across a mastermind, who gives him the knowledge of his Real self. No sooner does that part of him- the individual self –becomes one with whole, the Real-self than the various claimants to his body, mind and soul, namely kith and kin, community and country, teacher and preacher, all vanish into air.
(Over the years with Meher Baba, Bill Le Page, ed. 1999, pp-93)
A man goes to the bank where he has an account and asks the banker for a sum of Rs. 1500/- because he wants to go on pilgrimage and needs the money. The banker asks the man to wait as he needs to check the man’s account. After checking, the banker says, ‘Sorry, but you can only withdraw Rs. 1000/- from your account because that is all that you have.’
Now if the banker’s son was to approach him with the same request, asking for Rs 1500/- to go on a pilgrimage, the banker’s response would be different. He would ask his son to take at least Rs 2000/ and even then, would express concern that it might not be sufficient for the journey.
He would not insist on checking his son’s account. Out of love for his son, he would want to help.
In words of Bal Natu:
Karma is like that. You only get what is due to you, which is decided by your actions, whether good or bad, which get recorded in your account as your sanskaras. You can call it destiny.
Baba’s grace is like the banker’s love for his son. You have your karma following you from the past, but His grace supersedes karma. In order to invite this grace, one has to remember Him constantly and call out to Him.”
In the same way, if we insist on going through our karma instead of accepting Baba’s loving grace, Baba says, ‘All right, if you want what’s due to you by way of karma, it’s okay. I wanted to give you more by way of grace, but since you want karma, it’s okay.'"
Bal Natu often quoted:
“Agar na abhi, to phir kabhi, hum mast banege kabhi na kabhi.”
“If not now, then later we will become God intoxicated some time or another.”
(The Real treasure vol-1 by Rustom B. Falahati-page-14)
81-GRAB JUST ONE THING
Manija S. Irani
I'm basking in the profound depths of our Beloved's book God Speaks which He has told us to read. The explanations He gives to us are a glimmer (if only intellectually) of the immeasurably vast pattern of creation which is but a shadow of His Glory. But most of all it increases our eternal gratitude to Him for awakening our hearts with the divine breath of His Love.
How foolish then must man seem who asks Him merely for material benefit? It makes me think of the story of the king who on a spontaneous impulse announced suddenly to the subjects present in his palace to grab just one thing (anything within the palace) for himself, which he could then retain possession of. As you can imagine there was a wild rush — some made for the best of the jewels, others ran for the costliest thing they could see or had set their hearts on, while the king looked on. Amidst this mad rush of people who were trying to make the most of their sudden and short good-fortune, a slave girl walked quietly to the king and held his hand ... later the king said, "She's the only one who had sense — owning me who is the owner of all, she possesses all that is mine — she went to the source."
God is supreme authority and possessor of all heavenly and worldly things. When it comes to choose one between God and worldly pleasures one must select God only.
(Letters from the mandali, p. 38, ed. Jim Mistry , 1981 © Avatar Meher Baba Perpetual Public Charitable Trust)
At one time at Guruprasad, Meherwan recalls Baba had Nilu tell the following story to lighten their mood on seeing Baba so pulled down in health. Baba began by pointing to Nilu, who was exceedingly fond of sweets, and said, 'See, he is getting fatter and fatter, and I am getting thinner. If he continues to put on weight, he could meet the fate of a man in earlier times, so Nilu, tell the story of that man.'
Nilu began: There was a Master who wandered the country with his disciple, and they lived on whatever was given them. It was a very hard life, yet the disciple clung to the Master. One day they entered a certain kingdom and found a very strange situation. The King was very capricious and despotic, and his decrees were most odd. For example, a bundle of vegetables and the costliest sweets were the same price and the smallest crime and the greatest merited the same punishment — hanging! The Master gave his disciples permission to eat as they wished, and with what money they had, they enjoyed the richest food at the lowest price. This was a wonderful change from their usual fare, so much so, that when the Master said it was time to move on, one disciple pleaded that he be allowed to stay. (Here Baba interjected that this disciple was like Nilu — exceedingly fond of sweets.)
Although the Master warned him that this kingdom was very strange and strongly advised him to come with him, the disciple would not agree. So finally the Master gave his permission but said, 'Well be happy here, but if some real difficulty occurs, remember me and I will help you.' The disciple was delighted and inwardly could not imagine that he would ever need the Master again. The food situation was the best he had ever encountered. So he continued to thoroughly indulge himself and he grew fatter and fatter without a care in the world. But he was the only one in the Kingdom to do so; because everyone else lived in constant fear of doing even the most minor crime, aware that it would bring about the punishment of hanging!
As a result of this fear, everyone except the disciple was totally emaciated. But the carefree disciple continued to eat to his heart’s content. (Here Baba again interjected, 'See, despite My telling him not to do so, Nilu keeps eating and fattening.' All the mandali and visitors were now quite caught up in the story, and the heavy mood that had been created by Baba's frailty lightened considerably).
In the kingdom some construction work was being done, and in the process a wall collapsed and a donkey was crushed beneath it. The donkey's owner went to the King seeking justice. So the builder was called, but he protested that the fault lay with the man throwing water on the wall because he did not throw enough. So he was summoned, but he said that the goatskin water bag had a hole in it and therefore the goatskin supplier was to blame. That fellow was then called, but he maintained that it was the stitcher of the skin who should be blamed and so it went on until some poor wretch was sentenced to hang. But now that person was so emaciated and thin that no rope was able to hang him!
The king was not to be thwarted; someone had to hang, so he ordered that a fat man should be found in the kingdom. The only fat man in the kingdom was the disciple, so he was hauled, bewildered, before the king and told he was to be hung. The disciple pleaded, 'Sire, what have I done wrong?'
'You are the only fat man in the Kingdom!'
Then the disciple, in his desperation, remembered the Master and called inwardly for his help: 'Oh Master help me, I erred in not heeding your words.'
The Master suddenly appeared, and told the disciple to ask to be hanged and leave everything to him. The Master then approached the King, and sought to know what was happening. The King explained, and the Master cried out, 'No, no! please hang me instead!'
But at that the disciple came forward, 'Sire, you said I was to be hanged, and I beg you to do that'.
So thereupon the Master and his disciple appeared to have an argument, each seeking the right to be hanged, until the King intrigued, intervened, 'Why are you both so anxious to be hanged?'
Then the Master said, 'Today is a most auspicious day. Death by hanging today means a direct path to heaven. So naturally we are both seeking the privilege.'
The King was thrilled, declaring, 'The prerogative is mine' and he gave the order for himself to be hanged. All the people were delighted to carry it out and get rid of him, and they promptly did so before he had another caprice and changed his mind!
Master always appears to help His true devotee on his sincere call.
(The divine humanity of Meher Baba, pp. 31-33, Bill Le Page, 1999 © Avatar Meher Baba Perpetual Public Charitable Trust)
83-HARUN-AR-RASHID AND A SLAVE GIRL
Dr. Ghani Munsiff
Once Harun-Ar-Rashid, the Caliph of Bagdad was celebrating a royal occasion. He ordered a grand display of all manner of jewellery and artwork for it, and invited not only courtiers and nobles but many commoners also.
At the height of the celebrations the Sultan developed a magnanimous mood, and all of sudden he ordered every person present to touch any article they liked, and that article, no matter how precious, would belong to that person. No sooner the royal command was given than a rush was made to possess the costliest things within reach.
A beautiful slave girl, remaining composed and serene by side of the throne, asked sultan to reaffirm his command. On hearing it, she immediately touched him on the arm, saying, “Why should I run after secondary things when the primary object is here.”
The sultan never bargained for this, but in admiration of the high standard of discrimination shown by the girl he complimented her and said; “ Now that you possess me, the whole of kingdom is yours. Greater than all these hundreds, you have shown high moral courage and discrimination.”
In words of Meher Baba
Spirituality sought apart from life, as if it had nothing to do with material world, is a futile search. Creed and cults emphasize some aspect of life, but spirituality is totalitarian in its outlook. Spirituality is enlightened attitude to all life. It includes the whole of life.
(Over the years with Meher Baba, Bill Le Page, ed. 1999, pp-99)
84-HAS MY BELOVED ESCAPED FROM MY HEART?
The following story reveals something of the nature of the real love that Baba was talking about. It concerns a king and a queen who lived and ruled some centuries ago. They loved each other and were happy together. The king was a wise and just ruler, and under his reign his kingdom flourished and peace and prosperity prevailed over the land. The King's subjects were happy and content. In short, it was almost an idyllic existence, but there was one flaw, one minor thing which prevented the queen from being completely happy. And this was that the king seemed to have no interest in God. It was not that he was against God. He had no objection to his subjects or his wife worshipping God as they saw fit, it was just that he never seemed to join in.
Because the king was such a good man, whose life seemed naturally full of virtue, it was not immediately apparent that he was not a believer. But, as time passed, the queen noticed that the king always seemed to make some excuse so as not to attend religious festivals. And while she understood that the nature of his duties prevented him from worshipping as regularly as she did, she realized after a while that not only had she never seen him perform worship, she had never even heard him utter a short prayer. In fact, she had never heard him mention the Lord's name.
Now, the queen was very religious, and when she began to suspect that her husband, the king, was not a lover of God, she became quite upset. She did her best to persuade him to join her in her devotions, but no matter how hard she tried, he always found some excuse for not joining her. This was the only thing that marred her happiness, but as time passed, it became a bigger and bigger thing. She would think to herself, "My husband is such a good man, his kingdom is peaceful and prosperous, his subjects are happy. Just think how perfect life would be if only he loved God." Or sometimes she would fear that because her husband did not love God, the peace and prosperity might be taken away, and the more she thought about it, the more upset she got.
She began to lose interest in her duties as queen. Uppermost in her mind was the thought that her husband was not loving God as he should. Next to that, nothing else seemed important. She began to spend more and more time by herself in the palace temple. Her eyes, which previously had always twinkled with delight, now seemed pensive and brooding. Her constant cheerful smile was replaced with a frown. The king observed this and was sad, but whenever he asked the queen what was wrong, she would say, "Nothing." For she had already told the king she would like it if he worshipped regularly, and he had said, "Ask me for anything but that."
And so life went on, with the king attending to his duties, and the queen becoming more and more despondent and withdrawn. Now it so happened that one day, after this had been going on for some time, the king awoke and went to the ramparts of his palace. This was his usual custom. He would rise early and climb up to the ramparts and look out over his kingdom. He used to feel that he could ascertain the pulse of his kingdom from there. He had learned to tell, just from standing there in the early morning hours, whether there was any unhappiness or sorrow in the kingdom that needed attending to.
Well, this morning, as he looked out, he was surprised to see that many people were already awake and were busy putting up decorations. Others were cleaning the streets or their homes, and it was clear that some sort of major celebration was about to take place. This puzzled the king. He couldn't think of any festival or celebration which took place at that time of year. He called his prime minister and asked him what was happening.
"It is the queen's order, sire," the prime minister replied.
"The queen's order?"
"Yes, sire. Early this morning she got up and ordered that today was to be a day of rejoicing. She instructed that orders were to be given to all your subjects that today was a day of celebration."
"Why did she do that?"
"I don't know, sire. She didn't say."
The king was puzzled at this. Of course it was in the queen's power to pass such an order, but as she had taken no interest in the affairs of the kingdom for some time, this was a complete mystery to the king. Why had she suddenly given such an order? He went to see the queen, who greeted him in her best clothes and with a dazzling smile on her face.
"Did you order this celebration?" the king asked.
"Yes," the queen admitted.
"Why? What is it? What has happened that has made you so happy all of a sudden?"
"Oh my king," the queen exclaimed, "I am so happy. At last what I have been praying for all these years has come true. Last night, while you were sleeping, you turned over and I heard you utter the name of God. That is why I have ordered this celebration."
"What!" exclaimed the king "Has my Beloved escaped from my heart and passed through my lips?" And with that the king sighed and dropped dead.
One need not tell his experience to others which reflects one’s Self-expression (ego) to some extent. It results in enhancement of ego even unconsciously and hinders the progress on the path of spirituality.
(That’s how it was, pp. 306-309)
85-HOW TO PRAY GOD
There was a farmer who used to work in his field the whole day and, towards evening; much before sunset he would go to jungle to collect firewood. He would return home with the firewood before the sunset and spend rest of the evening with his wife. The couple had been recently married and was madly in love with each other.
One evening, the farmer did not return home at his usual time. After waiting for a little while, the wife became restless as the sun was about to set and there was still no sign of her husband. She was worried and this prompted her to go into the jungle in search of her husband. The king of that country, who was a Muslim, happened to be in the jungle at the same time as well. As the sun was going down he was reciting his evening prayers or namaz. The farmer’s wife was calling out to her husband and was so engrossed in searching for him that she did not notice the king who was bowing down in obeisance.
She tripped over the king and, after getting up she did not even bother to look at what she had tripped over. Such was her engrossment that she simply walked away, deeper into the jungle in search of her husband. This infuriated the king, but he and all his men were reciting prayers and had to wait till the prayer was finished before he could do anything. As soon as the prayer ended, king ordered his men to arrest the woman and bring her before him.
By this time, the women had found her husband and were happily returning with him when she ran into the gaurds. The guard arrested them and brought them to the king who angrily demanded, “Tell me why I should not behead you for your insolence? “The women looked surprised and said to the king, “Sire, I don’t know what are you talking about. Please tell me what my mistake is? What is it that has made a noble king like you so angry that you want to behead me?”
This king even more and he angrily retorted,” You disturbed my prayers. You tripped over me and did not even stop to apologize and now you tell me that you did not even notice the whole incident. How dare you show such insolence to a king? Why should I not put to death and now?”
The women calmly replied, “O noble king, I believe you when you say I did all these things and you would be justified in putting me to death, but I tell you this honestly that I was so engrossed in search of my husband, whom I love very much, that I did not notice anything at all. I am sorry, O king, but I fail to understand one thing. If you were really engrossed in offering prayers of God, how come you noticed all these things?”
King not only did he forgive her, but instructed his minister to reward the women. When the minister asked him, why he was doing such a thing, the king replied, “Today, she taught me how to pray.”
In words of Eruch
If you are engrossed in Avatar Meher Baba, nothing would disturb you. So when you are up at the samadhi, try to get engrossed in His remembrance just like the farmer’s wife.”
86-IS THAT SO
It so happened that in a certain area of the country there lived one who loved the Lord. He had settled in an isolated area some distance from the nearest village. There was a small cave in a hill a mile or so outside of the village and that is where he stayed. You may call him a recluse if you wish, but what need did he have of other people's company when his constant companion was the Lord? But, as Ramakrishna Paramhansa said, "When the flower is ripe, the bees come of their own accord." And so it was that the villagers started coming to visit.
First, probably, it was just one of the boys herding goats who happened to notice that someone was living in the cave and he told the other boys and they told their parents and so people started coming to see who was there, out of curiosity and to pay their respects. For it was obvious that it must be a devotee of the Lord, for who else would chose to live in such an isolated place?
And so, bit by bit, the villagers started to go visit their recluse, and what did they find? They found him absorbed in his devotion to the Lord. So the people would humbly bow, pay their respects and leave. But every once in a while, they might come when he was just sitting at the entrance to his cave, seemingly lost in admiration of God's creation. And they would seize this opportunity to begin a conversation, as they were naturally curious to know where he had come from, how long he planned to stay, what sect, if any, he belonged to, whether he could give them mantras to protect their livestock, in short, the usual endless questions that worldly people have for those who have given up the world.
But no matter how hard they tried, they could not engage him in conversation. For his response to everything and anything they said was always the same, "Is that so?" If they told him how they had come just to see him, he would look up very serenely and reply, "Is that so?" If they wept and said one of their family members was sick, he would reply just as calmly, "Is that so?" In short, to each and everything his answer was the same, a very gentle, "Is that so?"
This was a disappointment to those thirsting for gossip or words of advice or comfort and yet, the villagers found that they were comforted and sustained just by sitting in his presence. They began to send him small offerings of food which they would leave outside the entrance to his cave. And sometimes they would sit there for a while, enjoying the peaceful atmosphere, before returning home. All were happy. The recluse was pleased to be left alone to his worship and adoration of his Beloved, and the villagers were happy that their area was blessed with the abode of a true lover of God.
Now, it so happened that in the village itself we find an entirely different scene. One of the unmarried girls had become pregnant. Her mother eventually discovered this and was horrified. She began weeping and wailing at this calamity. When the father returned home in the evening he was even more upset at this revelation and began yelling at his daughter, berating her and demanding to know who was responsible for this outrage. You see, in those days people were very strict, such a happening brought disgrace and dishonor on the whole family – even the village felt itself shamed.
The girl began to weep but she was afraid to name the one responsible for fear that her parents would hurt him, so the more her parents demanded to know who had done it, the more she wept. Finally she blurted out, "Don't keep saying, ‘who is responsible?' If you must know, you are the ones at fault. It is because of you that I am now in such a wretched state."
"Our fault! But how can that be?"
"It is because you are the ones who used to send me every morning with the bowl of curds for the saint living outside of town."
"So? What has that to do with? You mean he is the one?!"
And the girl tearfully confessed that one morning after leaving the curds, the saint came out of the cave and raped her and she hadn't dared say anything until then because she knew what high esteem he was held in by all.
Well, the parents were understandably shocked and outraged at this, and the father began cursing the scoundrel and muttering, "I knew he was up to no good." See how the mind works. Only that morning he had sent the saint a bowl of curds and spoken of him with the greatest reverence, but as soon as his daughter confessed that he had raped her, then suddenly he always knew that the saint was an imposter, a rascal.
So the father goes to the village elders and tells them what has happened. Most are for going to the cave immediately and thrashing the man. But a few, remembering the feeling they always had in his presence, found it difficult to believe that he could have done such a thing and insisted on confronting him first, before taking any action.
Thus, parties of the village men tramp out to the cave and call the saint out. After a while he emerges, as unconcerned and benign as ever. "You rascal," the father shouts on seeing him. "You raped my daughter!"
"Is that so?" the saint replied, as if the father had merely said, "It seems like it might rain." The father rushed forward to strike the saint, but one of the elders held him back and addressed the saint himself. "This man's daughter is pregnant and she claims you are the father."
"Is that so?" the saint replied with equal unconcern.
"She says you raped her!"
"Is that so?"
Well, this was too much for the father. "Have you no shame!" he declares. "And to pose as a lover of God, you hypocrite!" and he began beating the saint.
The other villagers are also enraged that the saint showed so little concern at such a serious accusation and they conclude that such indifference can only reflect callous guilt and they are also outraged that all these years they have been duped into feeling the man was a saint when in reality he was the lowest of the low, and they all take their anger out by hitting and kicking the saint. Finally, leaving him for dead, they return home, satisfied that they have done what honour demanded.
But the saint did not die. He crawled back to his cave and went on with adoration of the Lord as always. Meanwhile time passes and the daughter gives birth. The parents don't want the child as it only reminds them of their disgrace so the father, who has heard from the goat herders that the saint is still living in his cave, goes there and takes the baby with him.
The saint is sitting outside the cave, silently marveling at the beauty of His Beloved when the father approaches and thrusts the baby in his hands. "Here, this is yours."
"Is that so?" the saint asks, looking at the child.
"This is the fruit of your evil action, now it is up to you to look after it."
"Is that so?"
The father stalks off and the saint, as unruffled as ever, begins to raise the child. Some of the shepherd boys give the saint some milk which he feeds to the child and so time passes.
Meanwhile the parents feel that the only way they can really get over their shame is to get their daughter safely married. Of course, it is out of the question to marry her to anyone in their own village but, by promising a large dowry, they manage to arrange for her marriage to an older man living in a nearby village. With great happiness they announce to the daughter that they have found her a husband. But, to their astonishment, the daughter starts crying. "I won't marry," she says.
"What are you talking about? You have to get married. You are of age, you can't stay in our home forever, and we have a good man in the next village who is willing to marry you in spite of your past." And they begin to extol the virtues of this marriage. But the more they go on, the more their daughter weeps.
She declares, "If you make me marry with any other person, I will kill myself." The parents can't understand this at all. What does she mean, "Any other person?" Finally the girl confesses, "I love another. I have loved him for years. If I marry anyone it will be him or I won't marry. He is the one who fathered my child and he will be my husband or nobody will."
The parents can hardly believe their ears. Immediately the father feels crushed with guilt. The saint had not been responsible for his daughter's dishonor, but he had dishonored the family by abusing the saint. With great embarrassment and shame, the father goes to the village elders and confesses to them what has happened. They are also all abashed at their former treatment of the saint and they realize there is nothing for it but to go and beg his forgiveness. So once more the father and the village men climb the hill outside the village and stand humbly at the entrance of the cave.
They beseech the saint to come out and soon he appears, carrying a small happy child in his arms. The father is so humiliated at this that he almost can't say anything, but he falls at the saint's feet and finally blurts out, "Forgive me, I have done you a great wrong."
"Is that so?" the saint asks mildly.
"Yes, I am sorry. My daughter has confessed. Here, this is not your child," and the father takes the infant back.
"Is that so?" the saint replies. All of the villagers join in begging forgiveness and asking the saint's pardon, but all he ever says is, "Is that so?"
After confessing their errors, begging forgiveness, and leaving all the gifts and garlands they had brought, the repentant villagers tramped down the hill while the saint went back inside his cave to continue his worship of the Lord as if nothing had ever happened.
When he was given the baby and told it was his, he said, "Is that so?" When the baby was taken away and he was told it wasn't his, he said, "Is that so?" When he was abused, "Is that so?" When he was honoured, "Is that so?"
In words of Eruch
The saint as a true lover of God took all that happened as will of God. As long as we are for ourselves, even if we try to love the God, we cannot be resigned to His will. But if we become His, then His will becomes our pleasure and every manifestation of it is a fresh marvel of His divine attributes. If we are His, our equanimity is never disturbed because it is all His doing, and His presence sustains us.
(Is that so?, pp. 106-110, ed. Bill Le Page, 1985 © Bill Le Page)
87-JUST HOLD FAST TO ME
One day the emperor announced that he wished to make a show of the royal treasury. "I want my subjects to know just how much wealth I have," he declared.
"But sire," urged his courtiers, "what of the dangers? What about loss, or bandits? How can we be sure the treasure will be protected?"
"Nothing will happen," the emperor assured them. "It is my whim to do this and there is no danger. I myself will head the procession."
So the diamonds and rubies and gold and silver and pearls and precious stones and all the other treasures were loaded into large baskets which were hung on camels, one basket on each side. The camels made up a long procession, so great was the treasure, and at the head rode the king and his courtiers and guards and, of course, by his side, the faithful Ayaz.
Slowly the long caravan set off through the capital, and the citizens lined the streets to get a look at the treasure. But the emperor was not content with simply going through the main streets; he led the procession through all the little alleyways of the capital as well. These streets were so narrow that the baskets on the sides of the camels rubbed against the walls. Soon holes began to appear and gems and coins began to spill out on the roadside.
The king was at the head of the caravan and Ayaz was walking by his side. Suddenly he stopped and looked around. "Where are all the courtiers?" he asked Ayaz. "Nobody is following us anymore. Where are they all? Go and find out."
Ayaz left and he did not have far to go. Back a little distance he found all the courtiers and subjects fighting and squabbling over the treasure lying around.
When Ayaz returned and told the king what was happening, the emperor said, "But why don't you go back and try and pick up some of the treasure yourself? This is your opportunity to become rich. You don't have to stay by my side."
"To stay by your side and have you is my treasure," replied Ayaz. When the emperor returned to court, he used this incident to reveal the worth of Ayaz.
In the same way, Baba went on to tell us, "When you have Me, you have everything. What need have you for anything else? Just hold fast to Me with both hands."
To be with Avatar or Sadguru has most meaning. Only fortunate ones come in contact of Avatar or Sadguru.
(That is how it was, pp. 332-333, 1995, © Avatar Meher Baba Perpetual Public Charitable Trust)
88-KHAWAJA SHAMSHUDDIN AND HIS MASTER
Dr. Ghani Munsiff
Khawaja Shamshuddin dedicated himself to the service and company of the spiritual Master Ali Ahmed Sabu. After a period, he was given true knowledge. He was later advised to take leave of his Master and at the same time to seek service in cavalry of the Sultan. When the Master had said this he also remarked, “the day you happen to work a miracle that will be the day of my departure from earthly life.” Khawaja Shamshuddin became a cavalryman in the service of Sultan.
When the Sultan sought to capture the fortress of Chittorgarh and failed to do so after much effort, he searched for a saintly personality to intercede for him in the matter and pray for his success. In his search, he met an advanced spiritual man who said to him, “Why are you wasting your time wandering hither and thither? In your service there is a cavalry man who is Perfect One. If you prevail upon him to pray for you, the fortress will immediately fall. The truth is that God had decreed the fall of this fortress to be dependent on the words to be said by him.” “How am I to recognize such a one? ‘At midnight a great windfall will pass over the camp of your army extinguishing all the fires and torches but one. A lamp will be found burning despite the high winds and that will be the pointer to the man you seek.”
It happened, as the holy man had predicted. A cyclone wind developed, and the king found all the lights extinguished except one. Approaching that place, the Sultan found the saint deeply engrossed within himself and lamp flickering before him. When the saint raised his eyes, he found the Sultan standing before him, and immediately knew the worst. – The consequence of Sultan’s presence foretold the death of His Master. However, he received the king respectfully and asked why he had come at such an hour. The Sultan apologized for intrusion and expressing his ignorance of the real state and stature of the saint, requested him to pray for the fall of the fortress. The saint did his best to put the Sultan off, saying that the king was misguided and misinformed but he found the king adamant in his request. Ultimately the saint said; “I shall have to pray for your success but on condition that you immediately pay my salary and accept my resignation. Six miles from here I shall pray you desire, and as early the next morning you are to attack the fortress. It will fall to you. This means that my Master Ali Ahmed Sabu will bid farewell to his earthly life today.”
The king did as requested, and the saint prayed at a point six miles from the camp. The fortress fell to the attack of the Sultan the next morning.
Reaching Kalyar, Khawaja found that his master had indeed died, and that through lack of other attendants, the body was guarded by tigers and other wild animals. On his approach, they departed and left him to attend to the burial of the body of the Master Al Ahmed Sabu.
Avatar and Sadgurus are not affected by adverse worldly situations as they are the part of the situation or to say the situations are created by them.
(Over the years with Meher Baba, Bill Le Page, ed. 1999, pp-97)
89-KING HARISCHANDRA–CREMATION LABOURER
There was one king in India named King Harish Chandra. He was a very, very honest person. One day he had a dream, and in his dream, sage Vishwamitra appeared. The king asked him “what do you want from me, O sage?’
“If you so want, “the sage replied, give me your whole kingdom without keeping anything back to yourself.”
“The king was delighted, and he said, “it is given to you. Now you are the king.”
“And the sage left.
“The king woke up. He thought about the sage. “Now this kingdom belongs to him. It does not belong to me. I have already given everything to him.”
“He was waiting and waiting for the sage.”
“At last sage came. King Harish Chandra bowed down to him, and said, “Now you take care of your kingdom.”
“You are handing over the charge of your kingdom to me in order to fulfil your promise,” the sage said. “But there is a custom that when you meet any sage, you must give them dakshina (gift).
“Now, because the king had given his kingdom to Vishwamitra, the king did not have anything of his own, and he could not take anything from his own kingdom. So he told the sage, “Please wait for some time, and I will give your dakshina. Please wait.”
“And the sage agreed.”
“The king left the kingdom along with his wife and son, Parikshit, and went to Benaras (Varanasi). He was searching for a job, but he could not find one. With great difficulty, the queen obtained a job of cook in the house of a very cruel, high-caste Brahmin. King Harish Chandra obtained a position in cremation grounds. His job was to collect tax whenever a dead body would come.
“One day, prince Parikshit was bitten by cobra, and he died. The Brahmin was so cruel, that he did not give the queen any money for the prince’s cremation. The queen, weeping, carried the dead body of her son on her shoulder to the cremation ground. King Harish Chandra recognized dead body of his son. He also recognized his Queen, but said, “I am appointed here to collect the tax. Therefore, I cannot permit you to cremate our child unless you pay the tax.”
“I have nothing.” the queen replied, “I have nothing else, only this sari.”
“Her husband, the king, replied, “I cannot allow you to cremate our child until you pay the tax. So you must give half of your sari by way of tax.”
“Whatever you like, you can take.” the queen replied. She offered her sari to Harish Chandra and asked him to cut it half, and take half of it for the tax.
“The king was about to cut off his wife’s sari when the sage Vishwamitra appeared, and said to the king. “I was testing your honesty. And you passed my test. I am very much touched with your honesty. Now go back to your kingdom and rule over it.”
“And prince Parikshit woke up on the queen’s shoulder, as if he had only been sleeping.”
In Baba’s words:
Honesty is to win the victory over your false self. Each person has a higher self (Reality) and lower self (false self). So long as your false self is there, you will remain attracted to false-hood. So aim of life is to get rid of your false self.
90-LAW OF KARMA
It is said that there was one day a tussle between Shankar, the Lord and His consort Parvati, in the heavens. Parvati was being reserved and silent with the Lord, and the Lord asked why she was cross with him. She said, 'How indifferent, how callous You are to Your devotees. And this has made Me think, “Is your love for Me so very great or are you also callous with Me?”
The Lord replied, 'What's the matter? How can I be callous? Everyone is well looked after, everybody is provided for. (As Meher Baba Himself said once, I dare not to care for My lovers.)
'I assure you that You are callous and indifferent to Your closest devotees.'
'Why, what has happened?'
And Parvati said, 'Come and see; there is a devotee of Yours who spends every day chanting Your name, repeating your name, and living only on what people give him to eat. He has left the world; he has nothing to provide for his family, he has dedicated his life to You.'
'Well, that is his lot. And that's how it should be; it will promote his progress on the path to Me.'
But she said: 'No, I don't believe in that. You must provide him with some worldly means because he is wholly and solely Yours.'
'What do you want Me to do, further than what I have already done in My omniscience?'
'I would like you to give him a lot of wealth.'
'Alright, I will give him a lot of wealth, because you want it that way.'
It seems that even God has to submit to the wishes of the consort!
Well, the devotee used to take a regular path from his hut to the market place where he would beg. And throughout the day and night he would chant the name of the Lord. So while he was walking towards the market place that day, a thought came to mind. I am getting older and the world seems to be changing. There doesn't seem to be the same compassion and pity in people as previously. I shall have to do something more in order to draw upon the compassion of mankind. What if I were to pose as being blind? Then they might be drawn to give me more.
So on the very day that the Lord throws down from the heavens a sack full of gold on the path that the devotee takes each day. The devotee decides to practice blindness. He shuts his eyes, walks with closed eyes so that he can draw upon himself the mercy of mankind and he walks right past the gold that is lying there on the path.
The Lord looks at His consort and says: 'See, that is the law of Karma. According to what is determined as your share in life that much is yours and no more.
Everything in one’s life is predestined by God. It is also guided by Law of Karma which is impartial.
91-LAWYER’S HOMAGE TO MULTIMILLIONAIRE FRIEND
Manija S. Irani
A multimillionaire was on his death bed and he invited three of his close friends for a private meeting. One was a lawyer, another was a priest and the third one was a doctor. The dying man said to his friends, “I have lots of money and it is said that when you die you have to leave everything behind; but no one knows if it is truth as no one has come back to share that. So it is my wish that as my most trusted friends you three carry out my instructions at my funeral time. I am giving you each rupees 10 lacs and I wish that you place this money on my body, along with garland when it is placed in the grave, for who knows, I may be able to take away with me. I trust you three will do this for me.” All three of them gave their promise to their friend and took the money from him and left. On the day of funeral all the three were present and each was seen to place a packet on his dead body before the coffin was closed and placed in the grave.
“A month passed by after this incident and all three of them had a get-together over evening tea. They were doing some small talk and missing millionaire friend. The priest suddenly blurted out, “There is an honest confession that I need to make both of you.” referring to his friend’s dying wish the priest said, “I did as my friend had asked me to but I didn’t put the entire amount on his body. I placed half of it and the other half I set aside. I did not do it for myself nor did I spend a single penny on myself. I used it in repairing the church and other church expenses.”
At this, doctor commented, “Since you have mentioned this, I too wish to say something. I too placed only 50% on his body and kept the rest aside, not for myself but for my poor patients.” At this the Lawyer berated both of them. Speaking furiously he said, “Shame on you both. He trusted us and this is how you uphold the trust. This how your honour a dying man’s wish. Look at me; I honoured his wish 100%. I placed the entire sum over his dead body –by cheque payment. ” Mani giggled and said, “She how smart the lawyer was. He pocketed the entire amount and also honoured the dying man’s wish. Only a lawyer can do it.”
God cannot be fooled. God makes no deal. One’s mind always tricks and deceives oneself to gain material benefit.
92-LOVE FOR THE MASTER AS THE WAY OF ATTAINMENT
The Master drew mankind through His personal example of all-compassionate love, yet He did not make it easy to follow Him. He enjoined those who would follow to "Leave all." Christ said: "He that loveth father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me; and he that loveth son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he that taketh not His cross and followeth after Me is not worthy of Me.
To follow a Master has ever required complete detachment. Many centuries before Christ, Krishna said words to this effect: "One who is never affected by circumstance, one who is calm in all trials, who no one else's moods or behavior upsets, one whose faith is never shaken, one who is cheerful even in the jaws of death – such a one only is worthy of loving Me."
An ancient tale which illustrates love for the Master as the way of attainment has been related by Meher Baba: *"In Rama's time a yogi once did penance for one hundred years. There was another man who loved the Master. He did no penance, no fasting. He only loved Rama. One day the Master went walking in the jungle. The first yogi opened his eyes and said to him, 'Oh, Rama, when will I see your formless face?' Rama replied, 'In fifty years.' The yogi was frightfully disappointed and said, 'I made penance for one hundred years and I suffered much, and still fifty years to wait!”
"The next day the Master accosted the happy devotee, and this loving one asked, 'Oh, Rama, when will I see your formless state?' Rama replied, 'After fifty more lives.' The devotee said, 'So soon!' And thereupon he got into such an ecstasy that he died; and as he was dying he saw Rama's formless state." Concluding, Baba added: "Love is the very essence of Godhood."
A great deal of patience is needed by spiritual seeker. Yogis develops ego of their austerities performed by them and therefore lack patience whereas a true lover or sincere devotee seeks happiness of his Master in loving Him and even does not think of God-realisation.
(Treasures from the Meher Baba Journals, (1938 – 1942); Pp-6 – 7, Compiled and Edited by Jane Barry Haynes, Copyright 1980 AMBPPCT
93-MASTER ABEL HASAN KHARGANI AND HIS WIFE
Dr. Ghani Munsiff
Once Avicenna, an Arabian physician and philosopher (AD 980-1037), hearing the spiritual fame of Abel Hasan Khargani, visited the Master at his home in Khargani. At that time the Master was absent, having gone to nearby jungle to fetch firewood at the request of his wife. When the wife was asked by Avicenna where the Master was, she replied hotly: “Why do you wish to see that lunatic and imposter? What business has you with and she went on at length, criticizing and belittling the Master, and disregarding his spiritual status.
Avicenna was greatly perplexed. What she said contradicted what he had previously heard, and he felt disinclined to continue his search for him. However, seeing he had come so far just to see the Master, he finally decided to do so. On going towards the jungle, he was astounded to see that the Master was returning with a great bundle of firewood loaded on back of a tiger. The philosopher, after paying respects, enquired of the Master the meaning of and difference between what he had been told by his wife and what he had seen. The Master replied, “There is nothing amazing about it. It is a mere equation of labour. When I put up with and bear the load of suffering from wolf (wife) in my house, then automatically this tiger from jungle carries my load for me.”
Every individual is in ignorance and cannot recognize the advance soul or a God-realised soul. Therefore Avatar or Sadguru are unmindful of what others think or say about them
(Over the years with Meher Baba, Bill Le Page, ed. 1999, pp-95)
94-MIND IS LIKE A BIRD CAGE (SMILE)
Mani S. Irani
Baba once remarked, "Mind is like a bird cage with its many bars imprisoning the bird. The door of the cage is the heart, through which (when opened) the bird can fly to freedom so easily."
But even when the Keeper comes along and opens the door, the captive bird flutters about dashing against the cage, hurting its wings and trying frantically to get out through the many narrow openings between the bars and giving up each time. I've witnessed this a number of times with caged birds. After a while the bird is exhausted with its effort and collapses, dropping to the floor of the cage looking dazed and helpless — and then, then it sees the open door, and in a moment is out of the cage and flying to freedom!
When mind turns inward and starts analyzing his good or bad actions it reaches higher and higher in controlling it and finally annihilate itself through the grace of a Master.
(Letter from the mandali Vol. 1, p. 34, ed. Jim Mistry , copyright 1981 Avatar Meher Baba Perpetual Public Charitable Trust)
95-NO INJUSTICE BUT COMPASSION
There was sincere seeker and lover of God who spent most of his days in praying and remembering the Lord. Although his heart was pure and he longed for God, his questioning mind would often come in the way of his devotion. Once, it so happed that his mind felt greatly disturbed by the situation around him. You know how the mind is-once it catches on to a disturbing thought, it won’t let go of it. So it was with this devotee. As the time went by, he was unable to calm his mind and he gave in to its promptings. He decided that he wanted nothing to do with God and gave up praying.
“The reason for this was that he saw so much injustice around him in the world that he began to feel that if God allowed such things to happen, then he wanted nothing to do with Him. So he stopped prayers. No sooner had he done that than Lord appeared before him. See how the Lord plays His games? When a lover prays and longs for his Lord, He becomes indifferent, but as soon as the lover becomes indifferent, the Lord becomes concerned and appears. It’s all His Leela, His divine game plan. So Lord appears to the devotee and coaxes him into speaking out what was troubling him. The devotee, who is very upset, blurts out, “What kind of God are you to allow such injustice in this world? How it can be? I can’t bear to see all this and want nothing to do with you.”
“The Lord appeared surprised and said, “Injustice in the world? How can that be? It is impossible. I would never allow such a thing. My sense of justice is also laced with compassion and mercy-something very few understands or grasp.”
“The devotee was even more upset and blurted out, “Don’t try to trick me with your words; I shall have none of it” So, like a loving parent, the Lord says pleadingly, “All right, if you can show me a single instance of injustice in this world, I will rectify it immediately.”
“The devotee was now happy with this suggestion and he and Lord set out together. No sooner had they gone short distance, than the devotee points to a man walking down the road. The man was a very honest man and a thorn had pierced his leg and he was bleeding profusely. There was no medical help close by and he was suffering terribly.
The devotee and the Lord walked some more and they ran into businessman. The man was very rude and arrogant. He became rich by indulging in all kind of illegal activities. As the man is walking he sees a bag in his path. Picking up the bag, man discovered that it is full of gold.
After pointing this out to the lord, the devotee takes him closer to the village. They happen to run into a labourer. This man worked hard all day just to earn enough money to feed his wife and children. That day this man had been beaten up by robbers and his money had been stolen. He and his family had to go hungry that night. After showing this to the Lord, the devotee took the Lord to a very mean looking tribal chief. He treated his tribe very badly while he had good time, surrounded by luxury, good food, wine, money and women. The tribals, who were suffering badly under him, prayed that they be relieved of such an oppressor. Having shown the Lord all this, the devotee asked him, “What do you have to say about all these instances of injustice?”
The Lord smiled with a look of compassion and said, “The honest man who bled profusely because of the thorn, was a murderer of the past. He had a death sentence coming to him in this life because of his past deed, but because of his good acts, and out of mercy, I reduced it to thorn in his leg.”
“The businessman who was rude and arrogant and did his illegal business was karma yogi who had done a lot charitable work in his past life. He had a kingdom of gold coming to him because of his past action. Because of his bad behaviour in this life, however, I reduced it to a bag of gold.
“The lord continued, “The common labourer had a food grain shop in past life. He caused hundreds of deaths by hoarding grains during a draught so he could make more profit. He and his family were destined to die of starvation in this life but out of compassion, I reduced it to one night starvation.
The leader of the tribe was to be ruler of the whole country because in his past he was very generous and helpful. Seeing his nature in this life, however, I reduced it to make him a leader of small tribe,”
“The Lord then asked the devotee if his mind was still troubled with doubts. The devotee wept and asked for forgiveness. With a look of compassion and mercy, the Lord forgave him and gave some parting advice to the devotee. “In the future, if a thorn pierces your leg and it appears as injustice to your mind, remember at that moment that may be a death sentence was coming your way and the lord, in his compassion and mercy, reduced it to just a thorn in your leg. If I did not lace justice with My mercy, then the world would suffer immeasurably. Not only do I do justice but I lace it with my mercy and compassion.
God is most impartial and law of Karma is applied to everyone. God only knows what is best for anyone and gives out of His compassion and mercy.
96-PARTING ADVICE OF A MASTER TO THE EMPEROR
It so happened that the emperor of certain country came to know that such a master was in his kingdom, and exclaimed: “What blessedness is this? I must go to him and pay my respects.” He set off with a large retinue, but knew that no amount of wealth, pomp and splendour would ever gain the attention of a Master who is only drawn to one who is humble, natural and loving. So five miles from the Master’s village the emperor left his horses, tents and servants, and walked the remaining distance with his courtiers. Near the Master’s dwelling the watchman stopped the party, asking who they were. “I am the emperor of this country, and we have come to pay homage to the Master. Please seek his permission on our behalf for us to see him.” and the emperor with his courtiers waited there.
When ushered in, they all remain standing and were introduced by emperor. The Master was very, very happy, asked them to be seated, and then talked to them about all sorts of mundane things. Here Eruch commented that Master never talk of spirituality; they are not the ones to teach from a pulpit, but within their informal talk there is often a dissertation – they may for example ask you about your health, and while doing so, some sentences may not strike you personally but “The cap will fit’ the others who are listening and everyone feels happy. The Master asked about emperor’s wives, his children, his last war, the economic conditions of the country, and the journey to him. Naturally the emperor answered politely, although he had come with the wish to pay the Master homage and to hear spiritual advice. The Master went on, but soon said, “Now it is time to go back.” This was his order, so all rose, and the king with folded hand asked for some parting words of advice. In reply the Master said, “Some advice, I will tell you a story. You are hunter, I believe?” “Yes.”
“This is story of a king, a great hunter. On one occasion it so happened that whole day was spent in chasing prey. The king would not give up. He became separated from his courtiers, his steed and finally fell dead from exhaustion, and king found himself alone in a desert, far from his kingdom. The prey had escaped; the king was exhausted, did not know where he was, and now was a faint from thirst, moved with difficulty, and continually fell. Thinking he saw water at great distance he crawled and crawled towards it, but it was only a mirage. Extremely weak and distressed, he was about to die.
“Just then,” continued the master, “I appeared with a pitcher of cool water, and offered it to the king, but said he would have to pay price for it.” “Anything-ask what you will.” gasped the king, “but please give me water.” “I told him, just half your kingdom.” He readily agreed, was given the water, soon regained his strength and began to return homewards. The Master resumed the story: “But now another crisis occurred- the king became unable to pass water and eventually suffered such agonizing pain that he again he felt near death. I appeared once more, bringing a remedy but saying that the price is other half of the kingdom, and he gladly gave it so that he might live.”
The Perfect Master now looked at the emperor and said: That story is my parting advice.
Deal with your subject, dependents or subordinates honestly. Do everything good possible for them. Always remember and keep at the back of your mind that all your possessions are not yours. You are just a caretaker in reality like a cashier of a bank.
(Over the years with Meher Baba, Bill Le Page, ed. 1999, pp-91)
97-PLEASE DO JUSTICE TO ME
Baba is Love personified, He is Truth personified, He is Everything. There is no difference between Truth and Love. But there is a difference between one who loves the God-Man and one who aspires for the Truth. The aspirations of the seeker of Truth will lead him through all sorts of byways and alley-ways, mountains, passes and valleys.
But for the one who loves the God-Man there is no wandering. He is simply in love with the God-Man, for him He is the Beloved, and he has one-pointed absorption in Him. He simply loves his beloved Lord and is completely content with no aspirations whatsoever. He has no questions to ask and nothing to seek or to find. He is quite content in just loving the Beloved.
There is story of such a one. And there was another person who was a seeker, and in his seeking he observed all sorts of austerities. He underwent fasts, he meditated; he carried out many yogic exercises. He was told that in the course of his pursuit of Truth, he would gain many powers, such as raising the dead, causing death, curing the sick and the blind and so on. He was charmed at the thought that through these things he would be able to help others, and he sought in right earnest to invoke the blessings of the Lord.
Years passed by. He continued strenuously in his efforts on the various paths to Truth. And while doing so, he remained in one place and was seated all the while on the same stone. He thought that by renouncing everything and remaining in the one place, God would be pleased with him.
And it so happened that after years of these practices, God was very pleased with his devotion. While seated on the same stone in the same place these many years, he heard God asking him what he wanted. He replied to the Lord: "Lord, you are the doer of justice and it is foolishness for me to ask anything else of you but justice. Please do justice to me."
The Lord replied, "All these years you have been a burden on this stone, sitting here and invoking my blessing to gain powers. If I were to dispense justice, justice demands that you unburden the stone of its burden, and put the stone on your head and have it as a burden on you."
Avatar or Sadguru does not make deal for imparting God-realization. One has to beseech the grace of the Master.
(It so happened, ed. William Le Page, pp. 70-71, 1978 © Meher Baba Foundation)
98-PLEASE SHOW ME MAYA
One day Ananda, Buddha's close disciple, said to Buddha, "Lord, you are always talking about Maya, but what is it? Please show me Maya." A few days passed and it so happened that Buddha and Ananda were travelling through a hot, dry part of India. After walking several miles, the Buddha sat on a rock under the shade of a tree and said, "Ananda, I am thirsty. Can you fetch some water for me?" Ananda went at once to try and find water.
He walked quite a ways and came upon a small farm. He thought the farmer might have a well and went up to the house to ask permission to draw some water. He knocked at the door, and it was opened by the most beautiful woman Ananda had ever seen in his life. Instantly he was spellbound. He just stood there and stared at her, speechless. He had completely forgotten why he had knocked at the door; all thought of water was gone. The woman, for her part, was equally struck with Ananda, for he was a handsome man and his love and devotion to the Buddha had changed him so that all who came into contact with him were struck by his presence.
So the two of them just stood there staring at each other without saying a word. After a while the farmer returned home and asked Ananda what he wanted. "I was wondering if you had any work that I could do for you," Ananda answered spontaneously, for his only thought was that he had to spend more time near this beautiful woman he had just met. Of course, farmers always have work that needs doing, so the farmer agreed to hire Ananda to help him in the fields. And so the days passed, and Ananda's love for the woman did not lessen in the least. If anything, it increased, and the only thing Ananda knew was that he wanted to stay near her. He also wanted to please her father so he would not be sent away, and he worked hard every day and came home exhausted, but content that for an hour or two, before bed, he could sit near the daughter.
After a while, Ananda got his courage up and asked the farmer if he could marry the daughter. The farmer was happy because Ananda was a good worker and he knew he would look after his daughter well. And, of course, the daughter and Ananda were happy and so the marriage took place.
The years passed and Ananda and the woman had three children. Ananda continued to work very hard and the farm prospered. After a while, the father-in-law died and Ananda inherited the farm. There was more work to do now, but Ananda was happy. His life seemed perfect. He loved his wife and his children, and there was enough to eat because the farmland was fertile and it seemed that there was nothing else Ananda could wish for.
Then, after twelve years of contented married life, there came a flood. Overnight the river rose and overflowed its banks and came rushing towards the farm. There was no time to save anything. Ananda put one child on his back and held his wife with one hand and the other two children in his other hand and was swept away by the current.
Ananda started swimming hard so as not to go under, and as they were pushed along by the flood they saw animals drowning in the torrent. Ananda felt his only hope was to try and swim across the current to the other side because there was a hill there which was not submerged, and if he could make it there they could be safe. But a flood means what? The current is not like that of an ordinary river, and Ananda had not gone very far at all when the child on his back was swept away by the current. His head was seen briefly above the raging waters but then disappeared from sight and was never seen again.
Ananda cried out in despair but kept on swimming. But the current was too strong and before long his two other children could not hold on any longer and were also swept away before their parents' eyes. Now Ananda only had his wife left, and he was determined to hold on to her. They had almost made it to the high land where they would be safe when the flood tore them apart. Ananda desperately reached out for his wife, touched her for a second, but the current drove her under and she too was lost. With his last strength, Ananda kicked and managed to throw himself on the dry land, where he lay exhausted and weeping bitterly about the loss of his family. His heart was broken.
Behind him came a gentle voice, "My child, have you brought the water?" Ananda looked up and there was the Buddha, sitting on a stone, looking at him with great compassion. "The water?" Ananda repeated, unable to take it all in. "Yes," Buddha replied. "You left at least half an hour ago to fetch water, and now that you have returned I was wondering whether you had brought any."
"Half an hour!" Ananda exclaimed. "But that can't be. I..." and now he lowered his head in shame, for he remembered how he had forgotten his Lord. "But what about my wife? I was married. I had children. Twelve years have gone by!"
The Buddha smiled and shook his head. All of Ananda's twelve years of married life had taken place in less than half an hour. "That is Maya," said the Lord.
Whole world is Maya (illusion). One finds it difficult to resist Maya and gets entrapped in it. Only the Avatar or Sadguru can make realise its falseness.
Maya, worldly allurement always distracts one’s mind and deceives. These mayavic impressions are carried by soul incarnation after incarnation unless one comes in contact of a Avatar or Sadguru who can only help to get rid of worldly allurements.
That’s how it was- pp. 400-403 1995 © Avatar Meher Baba Perpetual Public Charitable Trust
99-PRACTICE WHAT YOU PREACH
Muhammad was very fond of eating dates. One day a mother brought her son to him, complaining that the boy ate a lot of dates every day and so suffered from dysentery. The boy refused to obey his parents, and told them that he would not eat dates only if Muhammad told him not to do so. Muhammad could not tell the boy not to eat dates, when He himself was very fond of them and ate a lot of them. He told the mother and son to come back after a few days. Meanwhile, Muhammad stopped eating dates and when the mother came with the boy, He told the boy not to eat dates. The boy obeyed at once.
Unless one has mastered a virtue, he has no right or authority to teach or preach it to others.
(Lord Meher, pp-4995-1963)
100-RABIA AND THE SECRET OF BASRA
Rabia of Basra was considered one of the most beautiful women living on earth in her time. Her youth and beauty were unsurpassed. Now it so happens that a young man from Shiraz in Iran comes to Basra while travelling and sight-seeing. He is vigorous and handsome and very successful in business. His business takes him from place to place and country to country. At this time it brings him to Basra. He's fond of sight-seeing. So while having tea or food he asks whomever he meets, "Are you from Basra?"
"Tell me what's to be found in this place? Is there anything out of the way, anything unusual, anything special?"
"Well, we have fine gardens and we have fountains and all that."
"Oh! I have roamed many countries and seen a number of big cities. There are many such beautiful things; but is there anything here that is out of the way?"
"What is it?"
"The most beautiful woman on earth!"
"What? The most beautiful woman on earth!" He's young and handsome, and youth is always attracted by beauty. He hears this and laughs. "Well, I've seen thousands of beautiful girls. Can there be any more beautiful than those in Iran?"
"Well, that's what I'm telling you," says the man.
And the young Iranian again goes sight-seeing and again asks some people, "Is there anything special to see in this place?" And they tell him about various sights, and again he asks, "But is there anything special?"
And they say, "There is nothing better here than Rabia of Basra. Her beauty surpasses all beauty."
"How can that be?" he asks. "What makes you say that?"
And they reply, "Those who are starved for beauty, they will find that out when they meet her."
"All right, where can I find her? How does one see her?"
"Well, where else? In a brothel!"
"Oh, that's a common story. We have prostitutes in Iran too. We know about that kind of woman."
"Yes, but this is different!" they answer.
He goes around to different places in the city, and again he hears the name of Rabia from someone he meets, and then from another man and then another and another. Gradually he comes to realise that this whole city is somehow different from other cities he has visited. This place is charged with such an atmosphere that people talk freely about the beauty of a woman, and yet there seems no trace of vulgarity in their talk. What is it? Who could she be? What makes her so beautiful and at the same time approachable by all? He thinks, "Well she's only a beautiful prostitute. That's why she is approachable for all."
After some days he decides to visit Rabia even though she's in a brothel. Although he is from a social stratum that customarily does not frequent brothels, he makes himself bold to go there. For the first time in his life he makes up his mind to go to such a place and see for himself what he has heard about from other people. He makes discreet inquiries about the place and time she's available. Somebody leads him there in the evening, saying, "Go up the stairs and there will be a matron who will see you and ask you to pay a fee."
"She takes fees?"
"She doesn't, but the matron asks for them. Without paying you won't be able to go in."
"Okay, never mind. I have money."
So up he goes, slowly climbing the stairs. And all the time his mind is working, full of this beauty he has heard about and anticipating the moments he'll spend with her. When he arrives, the matron questions him, "What do you want? Are you a stranger in this country?"
"Yes, I am a stranger here, and I want to see Rabia of Basra."
"What do you mean you want to see Rabia of Basra? Is she an exhibit in a zoo or something?"
"Well, isn't she approachable?"
"Yes, but you have to be with her, not just see her. And you have to pay a fee."
"Yes, yes, I want to spend time with her."
"All right, but the fee is exorbitant."
"I don't mind; I'll pay whatever it is." He pays and she takes him to the suite, ushers him inside and shuts the door.
He finds the room is vacant; there is nobody to wait upon him. Then he gradually ventures further in. There is a little room to the side and in it a figure is praying. A prayer carpet is spread and the figure is kneeling, absorbed in prayer. What beauty she has! He has never seen such beauty! "Oh, how could she be here?" he thinks, "How could she allow men to co-habit with her?" He sits and gazes at her beauty and loses himself. Yet, his passion is aroused, and he waits for her to be finished with the prayer.
She prays and prays. An hour passes. Gradually there is ebb in his passion. He is attracted by her beauty and at the same time by her purity. After another hour or so she finishes her prayer and looks at him; it is as if lightning has struck him, the very sight of her!
She apologizes and says, "I'm so sorry. Pardon me for keeping you waiting so long! I was absorbed in prayer. You must be hungry." She claps and her maidens come. She orders, "Spread the feast for him. He is our guest tonight." And to him, "Would you like to drink something? What sort of liquor do you prefer?"
"Well, I'm from Iran...." And he thinks, "That's good, she's not too absorbed in prayers; she offers me food and drink also. And it's true what people say — she's truly beautiful!"
So he takes an interest in conversing and opens up his heart. He tells her his whole story while she listens intently. As he talks he just gazes at her, feeding upon her beauty. She also participates in the conversation, inquiring about his well-being, and about his travels and his work.
"You must have visited many places and seen many fine sights. Have you visit Basra properly?"
"Yes," he says, "I have almost finished my visit to Basra, and everywhere I go I hear about your beauty. And so I wanted to be here with you."
"You are most welcome," she says, "But after all, what is this beauty of mine? It's a passing show! Very soon I'll get old and become all wrinkled. Age will tell upon me just as it will upon you."
And she takes up the thread there. The talk about beauty and truth and God starts, and it goes on and on into the early hours of the morning. Eventually she leads him to the point where he becomes a real devotee.
"What a discourse you've given me tonight!" he says. "Now I begin to realise what real beauty means, how one should behave in life, how one should seek that eternal beauty which never perishes."
"Yes," she says, "that's right. That's how it is."
Finally he feels it's time to go. "I'm your slave," he says from his heart. "Tell me anything, anything in this world I can do for you."
"I have one little request."
"Anything," he replies. "Ask for wealth. Ask for anything you want."
"There is just one little thing, if you could do it."
"What is it?"
"Never tell anyone what transpired here tonight. Allow the people to come to me. This beauty is bait to lure them. It motivates them and gives them strength and right understanding and the right perspective on life. God has placed me in this particular place so that I can do His work and tell people about true beauty and real love. Promise me that you'll never tell others what you've experienced here tonight."
"Oh!" he says. "So this is the secret of Basra! The whole city clamours after your beauty. Yet nobody tells me about his experience."
"Yes," she smiles. "They all promise. You see, my beauty is my strength to fight in the cause of my Lord."
Baba added: It took a long time after that for Rabia to become Babajan, the Perfect Master who awakened me to my own Divinity!
In Baba’s words:
Every Baba-lover who is beautiful can use her beauty as a great strength to get many more hearts to Baba. But one must be as stable as Rabia.
A Master had come to a particular village. People got attracted to him of their own as usual. Not only did the villagers come to him for his blessings, but also some of them chose to live with him, serve him and become his disciples. After a few years, Master decided that his work with the village was over; that he needed to leave the village. So he instructed his disciples to go back into the world and to practice all the things that he taught them while living a worldly life. He encouraged them to meditate on God, repeat God’s name, practice detachment, be honest in work, love everyone and everything, and be resigned to God’s Will in every situation. Although all the disciples agreed to obey the Master, one of them insisted on accompanying the Master rather than obeying him.
The Master knew that the disciple was a better off living in the world and pursuing God rather than accompanying him and told him so. The disciple thought the Master was making excuses and kept insisting that he was sincere in his longing to accompany the Master. Finally the Master agreed, but put a condition as a test to live in a hut on the bank of a nearby river and wait for him to come back, which he would do after two years. During this time the disciple was to lead a simple life of a mendicant, beg for food and carry on with the practices and meditation taught by the Master.
With this, this Master set off on his journey, blessing the disciple. The disciple built a small hut near the river bank and sincerely started the task given to him by his Master. He got up early in the morning and recited prayers. He removed his dhoti (A fine cotton material covering his lower torso), put it on the bank and walked into the river.
In the rural India, It is practice that holy people get up before sun rise, bathe in the river and as the sun rises, they stand in the water, cupping their hands and lift the water in a gesture of offering to the sun, all the while reciting mantras or prayers. This disciple, too, was following a similar practice. After finishing his prayers, he felt happy and walked towards the bank to collect his dhoti. As he bent to collect it, he noticed holes in it as if some animal had chewed it. He wondered what has happened.
The next day, again as he finished his morning prayers and returned to collect his dhoti in a blissful mood, he noticed that there were more holes chewed in it in a similar pattern. This disturbed him so, on the third day, as he recited the prayers he kept a watchful eye on his dhoti. The disciple noticed a rat chewing on his dhoti, so he ran towards the bank, leaving his prayers unfinished to chase the rat away.
Next day, the disciple brings a cat to keep the rat away and ties it near the his dhoti to keep watch. That morning the disciple is able to recite his prayers with complete focus. He was happy to return to the bank to find his dhoti intact. However as the day progresses, the cat gets hungry and starts crying. The disciples get annoyed because it is disturbing his meditation. So when he goes into town to beg for his food, he also begs for some milk for his cat.
As the days go by, he finds it hard to get milk for the cat and so he decides to keep a cow. That way not only will the cat get milk each day, but he could partake of it as well. The disciple now continues with his morning prayers and tries to spend the rest of the day meditating on God. However, as time passes, he realises that a large part of his time is utilized in washing, milking and feeding hay to cow, leaving him with little time to meditate.
So he decides to recruit someone to take care of the cow. Now the disciple has to take care of the needs of the person he has hired and has to beg for two. Although he managed well for few days, it became difficult. So he decides that it would be easier for him to cultivate food on his own with help of his worker and, in this way, he would not have to beg for food. Once they became self sufficient, he would be able to meditate without further disturbance.
The mind kept fooling the disciple and getting involved in new situations. As the work load increased, the disciple recruits more workers. The food, after being harvested, needs to be stored and protected, so he had to build a shed. To raise money for the shed, he sold the excess food in the market and so on. In two years time, the disciple now owned a huge farm, with several workers and a nice palatial house with servants and vehicles.
As promised, the Master returned to the bank of the river looking for his disciple and the small hut he had left him in. Unable to find his disciple, on the hut, he inquired with passerby, but none seem to know such person. After repeated inquiries, someone told the Master about this wealthy man who comes early in the morning with his cat to the river bank to offer prayers. He seemed to fit the description of the disciple, except that he lived in a palatial house and not in the hut.
The next morning the Master went to the bank of river and noticed this wealthy man walking down towards the river with cat. He did not recognize him, but the disciple, on seeing his Master, ran and fell on his feet. On getting up he looked at the surprised expression on his Master’s face and asked “Don’t you recognize me? You left me at the bank of this river two years ego.
“Yes, I recognize you now, but what happened to you? Where had the hut gone and what about the simple clothing you used to wear?
The disciple explained the sequence of events; how one thing led to another and how, now he had the responsibility of looking after his workers who took care of his farm which produced food for him and his cow so that the cat could be fed the milk in order that it would protect his dhoti from the rat so that he could pray peacefully.
“And what about rest of the day,” the Master asked. “Do you meditate on God?”
“How can I do that when I have so many responsibilities?” the disciple protested.
At this, the Master remarked, “I had wanted you that worldly life was the best path for you and not a life of renunciation.”
The disciple knew the Master was right, but also did not know what else he could have done under circumstances. So he asked the Master, “What should I have done? Where did I fail?”
The Master replied, “It was your attachment to your dhoti that took you away from God. When the rat ate your dhoti you should have given up wearing dhoti and focussed on God. Why did you not give up wearing dhoti? Had you done that the matter would have ended then and there? Your attachment created a desire to protect your dhoti and from this small seed of desire grew a whole big tree of desire. You have to be desireless to walk on the path.”
With this the Master blessed the disciple to continue to live the worldly life and remember the Lord.”
In Eruch words:
Be careful of how the mind tricks even one is sincerely attempting to walk on the path to God. It is not easy task. It requires great daring where one has to prepare to renounce everything at His stake. One has to be prepared to become completely naked, if necessary, for His sake and have no worldly attachments.
102-REPEAT THE NAME OF GOD AND BECOME GOD
There was a Master who in his public talks always emphasized the same point, “Repeat the name of God and you will become God.” Wherever he went, whenever he talked, it was always the same thing, “Repeat the name of God and you will become God.”
One day at large public gathering the saint was delivering his usual message when someone stood up in the crowd and said, “I don’t understand how you can say that. It makes no sense. Repeat the name of God and you become God? Do you mean to say that if I repeat the name “bread” over and over I will become a loaf of bread? That’s obvious nonsense.”
The Master was unperturbed by the interruption and just went ahead exhorting those present to constantly repeat the name of God and become God. In fact, he paid no attention to the man at all. This irritated the man quite a bit and he blurted out, “why don’t you answer my question, if you call yourself a Master?”
The Master turned and scolded the man saying aloud, “Sit down, you bastard” and then continued with his talk. The man was so shocked and stunned that he just collapsed in his chair and was quiet for some time. After a while when the shock was down, the man became furious. Before his question had been ignored, but now he had been publically insulted and humiliated, and the more he thought about it, the more enraged he got. His face turned bright red, and started breathing quite rapidly and his hands unconsciously balled into fists as he stood there trembling to contain his anger.
The Master turned to him now and said, “Yes, is something wrong? Are you upset about something?
“Upset?” the man sputtered. “How dare you? I demand an apology for what you just did.”
“What did I do? The Master asked in all innocence.
“You called me unspeakable name. You…”
“Oh, is that all?” the Master said. “Yes, just think about it. I called you a name and only hearing it once the power of that word was so strong that it changed you completely in just a few moments. If an ordinary profane word can have that effect when uttered about once, just think what the name of God can do when uttered by you continuously over a long period of time. Now do you see why I always say, “Repeat the name of God and become God?”
There is great miraculous power in the name of Avatar or Sadguru. Avatar or Sadguru can save anyone from disaster if remembered dearly. Constant and wholehearted remembrance of God’s name is the easiest, surest and safest way to find God. -Meher Baba.
Saint Mira is another example. She was a queen who lived in a palace. She was detached from the world, absorbed in God's love, and she did not care for any worldly thing. All the time, she was singing songs for Krishna. Her mother-in-law and sister-in-law did not like this gave her a lot of trouble. But she was so absorbed in love for Krishna that she did not know that her in-laws were plotting against her. One day, Mira's mother-in-law gave her poison, and Mira drank it in the name of Krishna. Nothing happened to her.
Every morning, a gardener would bring Mira a basket filled with flowers for her to offer to Krishna. Her mother-in-law and sister-in-law arranged for a cobra to be put in the basket along with the flowers. The gardener brought the basket and set it before Mira, who happily accepted it. When she opened the basket, there were only flowers, no cobra.
"She would leave her palace and go out onto the road and sing for Krishna. The mother-in-law and sister-in-law did not like her behavior. They did not know why she was acting as she did. Once, Mira went out singing and singing and ended up in Mathura, Krishna's birthplace. Her husband, the king, loved her very much and would not take part in troubling or harassing her. He searched round and round for Mira, and when he went to Mathura, he found her sitting in a temple, singing for Krishna. He bowed down to her. Then Mira's mother-in-law and sister-in-law also came, and they, too, bowed down. Mira was absorbed in Krishna. The world did not exist for her. She saw Krishna in everything, Krishna and nothing else. This is longing for God. One becomes mad after God
Mira was devoted to Lord Krishna. Her devotion was like a fiancés (wife) of Lord Krishna (one of nine types of Bhakti) and got liberation. Anyone following any one of nine types of Bhakti can get liberation.
104-SO THAT MY LOVE MIGHT FLOW
Narada, one of Krishna's close ones, came one day to the palace to give Krishna a message. But as he approached, a watchman stopped him and said, "You cannot enter."
"What do you mean I cannot enter? I am Narada. I have access to Krishna's bed chamber." Which was true? Narada was so close to Krishna that he had permission to come anytime, anywhere, to see him.
But the watchman replied, "I know who you are, but on this particular occasion you must remain here. The Lord Himself has ordered me to stop anybody from coming just now."
"What do you mean on this particular occasion? What is the Lord doing that I can't go to see him?”
The watchman replied, “He said he wanted to pray.”
"Pray? My Lord is praying? To whom does he pray? Who is greater than my Lord?"
Narada demanded and accused the watchman of blasphemy.
But the watchman persisted in keeping Narada out, saying, "I am only telling you what he told me. He said he wanted to pray and that I should not let anyone in because he did not want to be disturbed while he is praying." Narada had no choice but to
wait, and all sorts of confused thoughts were going through his head.
After half an hour or so, Krishna came out of his room and saw Narada waiting outside the door. He greeted Narada warmly but Narada was so agitated that he made only the most perfunctory of greetings. "What's wrong?" Krishna asked. "You seem upset."
Narada was so upset, in fact, that he totally forgot about the message he had come to deliver, he totally forgot that that was why he had come in the first place and he blurted out, "The watchman said you were praying."
“Yes that is so,” Krishna affirmed.
"But to whom do you pray?" asked Narada, whose confidence in the Lord was shaken by Krishna’s admission.
Krishna laughed. "Do you really want to see to whom I pray? Come with me." And Krishna led Narada to his prayer room. “Here, here is my God,” Krishna said.
And what did Narada see? He saw little figures, little images of Krishna's mandali. There was a little figure of Narada, of Arjuna, of all the close ones. "These are the ones I pray to," Krishna explained. "I pray to My lovers. You see, the whole purpose of creation was so that My love might flow. I eternally love My creation, but periodically I take birth to receive the love of My lovers. My lovers worship Me and I worship their love for Me.”
Avatar or Sadguru) is the slave of His lovers and never lets His lovers down in fulfillment of their sincere wish.
“Is that so?” Ed. Bill Le Page, pp. 86-87, Copyright 1985 Bill Le Page
Ivy O. Duce
There is a well-known story in India, many versions of which exist, which points up that the Avatar brings his close disciples through the planes under veil. It seems that Lord Krishna had a disciple named Narad who, after many years of service to Krishna, began to be discouraged because he could see no sign in himself of any spiritual advancement. He hungered for spiritual experiences, which he felt would indicate his spiritual progress, like many people today. He complained to Krishna that although he had lived with Him all his life, he still was no better than any person who had never met the Master. Krishna assured him that by living a dedicated life with Krishna he was literally on the threshold of God's abode, and that some day he would come to know where he was spiritually.
Narad, however, persisted in feeling gloomy about the years passing by without his having acquired any knowledge. Finally after some years, the Lord Krishna told him that on a certain day he wanted Narad to go to a particular spot under a tree and just watch the ground. Narad did this, finding there only a large lump of fecal matter. He became more and more agitated over having to stand and stare at this. His feelings of unworthiness intensified. Finally a worm crept out of it, and as Narad gazed upon it, the worm keeled over dead on the spot.
Narad journeyed back to his Master and related the incident when asked what had happened. Narad's mind was full of protest that here he was, living with the God-Man and not even having the experience that he had lived a worthwhile life. Krishna ignored him for a while and then ordered him to go to another place in the woods, where he was to stare at a certain tree. On the prescribed day Narad did so and suddenly noticed a bright parrot on a branch. As soon as the bird caught his eye, it dropped dead. This frightened Narad, and he felt that since the very sight of him caused creatures to die, he was most unworthy. However, the deep impression of unworthiness now caused him to feel that living with the God-Man was his only recourse.
Krishna ignored Narad for some time then one day told him to go to the house of a village Patel (headman), where a little colt had been newly born. This prospect frightened Narad, but he felt that he had to obey the Lord Krishna. Patel was quite religious and received Narad reverentially. He finally asked Narad what had brought him to his dwelling, and Narad replied that he had heard about the newly born colt and would like to see it. This flattered the owner, who brought out the little colt with great pride. As soon as Narad's eyes fell upon the colt, it dropped dead. Narad was beside himself, although the owner did not connect him with the death of his little colt.
Sometime later a neighboring king came to Krishna and begged him to visit and bless his newly born child. Krishna decided to send Narad as his representative, but Narad was terrified that his glance might kill the little prince. Krishna, who knew everything, offered comfort and encouragement to Narad and stated that although there had been three failures, the disciple should now go to the palace and visit the newly born child.
Since it was known that Narad was one of Krishna's favorite disciples, when he arrived in time for the naming ceremonies the king, with all due respect, conducted him to the cradle to bless the child. Narad stated that the child had Krishna's blessing, but steadily refused to really look at him.
The story goes that the child sat up in his cradle and thanked Narad for all he had done and asked, "Why now do you deny me your glance and darshan?"
Narad was stunned and asked what he was supposed to have done. The prince said:
"When I was a worm I had your darshan, which enabled me to avoid many rebirths. I at once assumed the form of a parrot, and in that form I again was blessed with your darshan. This helped me to be born immediately in the form of a colt. While I was a colt, you again appeared before me, and that blessed meeting has hurried me here."
When Narad returned, Krishna with a smile asked him if now he believed that he had gained some spiritual status by serving him, whereupon Narad fell at Krishna's feet.
Avatar or Sadguru keeps His disciple under veil and does not let him know of his spiritual status to safeguard from display of powers. Avatar Meher Baba said that He will take us to final destination (God-realisation) blindfolded.
106-STATE OF READINESS
One day a disciple of Ramkrishna asked Him. “You tell us that the Lord will appear when we are ready, but can you tell us as to when exactly this happen? How do we know for sure that the time has come for the Master to appear? How do we know that the time has come where the soul has reached the point of readiness?
In response, Ramakrishna asked his disciple to follow him. They walked towards river where he undressed and asked his disciple to do the same. They walked into the river, clad only in their undergarments and, when the water was about the chest deep, he caught his disciple’s head and forcibly pushed it under the water and would not let him come up for breadth.
Eruch paused for a moment and continued, “Do you know how it feels when someone pushes your head under water and does not allow you to come out? You start grasping for air. You desperately want to come up, because if you stay under too long you will die. And that how the disciple felt. He was struggling for his life to come up, but Ramkrishna would not allow it. Being Perfect Master, Ramakrishna held his disciples head under water until the very last moment and then pulled it out.”
The disciple started gasping in deep breaths. It took few minutes before he was able to regain his breadth, his composure and balance. Ramakrishna then asked him. “Tell me, what was the last thought that came to your mind before I pulled you out of the water?
The man replied, “My last thought was that if you help me down even for a moment longer, I would die.
Ramakrishna said, “When you have the same feeling about seeing God and becoming one with Him-when you feel that you can’t survive a moment longer without His sight-then you will know that you are ready and the moment for the Lord to appear has come. But this feeling has to be constantly there in your heart. You must feel that you can’t bear the separation even for a moment and that you will die without His presence. When such intensity is created, the Lord appears immediately.
When disciple is ready in his love for Master and feels like fish without water; Master appears and gives instant God realization making His disciple like Himself.
There is a good illustration of the nature of anger given by the Perfect Master Ramakrishna. He was from the area around Calcutta and the Ganges flowed by his ashram. One day Ramakrishna was standing by the river with his disciples and, pointing to a boat moving upstream, he gave this parable on anger.
The boatman rowing upstream sees another boat, far off, moving downstream towards him. He shouts. "Hey, watch out! Change your course, look out!" But the boat continues to rush towards him and, as it comes closer, he sees that there is nobody in the boat. Now is he going to continue to yell at the boat to change its course? No, he is simply going to change his own course and steer around the onrushing boat.
Ramakrishna said, "The one who is angry is like a boat which has no captain. When you see there is no captain, steer away. Don't stand and throw words back at the boat in anger. Steer aside. Otherwise neither boat has a captain."
Anger is a brief madness. Angry man is like a boat without captain. It is difficult to control anger. Avatar Meher Baba gave a solution. When one feels angry he should think that man before him is Meher Baba.
(Is that so?, ed. Bill Le Page, p. 38)
A young Egyptian coming from a very rich and aristocratic family was the disciple of the great Sufi Master Zu-el-Noon, a fisherman by profession. The Master gave the young man orders to utilize his vast wealth for the upkeep and running of the ashram. Accordingly the young man started attending to the task entrusted to him. However, one thought continuously rankled him, the fact that Master totally ignored him, let alone even once offering thanks for all he spent and did for the ashram.
A time came when he had spent all his wealth in service of the ashram. With a touch of arrogance and pride he said to himself, "Now let's see how they run the show."
That night Zu-el-Noon called the young man to His room and after a little talk ordered him to bring a fistful of white clay lying outside the room. When the clay was brought to the Master, he casually began to press it in His hand and in no time it turned into a beautiful precious ruby the size of a duck's egg.
Zu-el-Noon told the young man, "Tomorrow go to the jewelers and find out the value of this ruby. That's all, don't ever sell it." Accordingly, next morning the young man went to the jewelers to value the ruby. To his utter surprise the value worked out to be the exact amount he had spent on the ashram.
He returned and reported his findings to the Master and when the Master asked him as to how much he had spent all these years in the service of the ashram, the young man confessed it was the exact value of the ruby.
The Master gave orders to smash the ruby and then said, "You came to me for spiritual enlightenment and running of ashram was the task I gave you. You did carry out my orders but all the while the thought was there that you were obliging me and your fellow disciples. Know it was an opportunity I gave you to serve; otherwise I am fully capable of running my ashram. Also note that had I even once acknowledged your presence and said, "Thank you" Then you would have had your reward in this world itself. Whereas I wanted that you should have your true reward in Allah's Darbar. Go now, remove such thoughts of self and begin serving with love and diligence."
The young man bowed at his Master's feet, begged Him to forgive him and said, "But Master, I have no wealth left of mine."
The Master told him not to worry and sure enough in no time he regained his lost fortune and now began serving in the true sense and with love and reverence for his Master.
Avatar or Sadguru obliges the disciple by helping him to progress on the path of spirituality. It is fault of disciple who has no capacity to understand Avatar or Sadguru’s action and therefore, sometimes acts in opposition.
(Words of Kabir & other stories, pp. 133-134, 2006 © Sam Kerawala)
109- THE BODDHASATVA AND YOUNG MAN
After Lord Buddha dropped His body, there followed a chain of Masters known as Bodhisattvas. One morning, in the ashram of the third Master after Lord Buddha there came a young man. He bowed before the Master and said, “Oh Master, accept me as Your disciple.” “What is purpose behind this request?” I want to search for God. I feel in my heart that He is the only Reality and I want to become one with Him.” The Master perceived that the Young man was sincere and worthy, but to test him He said, “This path is only for those who are high-born. tell Me about your birth-what station of life were you born into?’ The man replied that he did not know, but that he would return home and ask his mother.
When he reached home, his mother was eagerly waiting him, embraced him, and asked, “What did the Master say to you?” “Master wants to know my lineage, my birth. Can you help me?” The mother then opened her heart and said that as young women extreme poverty was her constant companion. She had nothing of this world, and because of that state she had to serve many masters. She continued, “I know I am your mother but do not know who your father is.”
He returned to the Master, at the time when many disciples were present, and told the Master openly what his mother had said. The devotees present hearing this, angrily called for him to be thrown out, and thus not pollute the ashram. But the Master told all to sit down and be quiet. Then He called the young man to Him, and said, station in life is never determined by birth, where you were born or who your parents are. One’s station in life is always determined by intensity of love and desire to be one with the Beloved. Today, by uttering the exact truth of your lineage, without slightest hesitation, without thinking of telling a lie, you have surpassed the height of any Brahmin present here. So you are welcome in My ashram.
Caste and creed have no place in domain of spirituality. It is only love for God that counts to tread on the path of spirituality. Avatar or Sadguru does not discriminate His disciples for caste or creed.
(The Divine humanity of Meher Baba vol. III, Bill Le Page, pp-146)
There was a forest where there was a hole. Many mice were living in that hole. And the mother of the mice would not allow any mouse to go out of the hole, because outside of it, there was a cat.
One day, all of a sudden, one mouse came out of hole. The cat immediately ate that mouse.
Nearby was a hunter’s dog. That dog then ate the cat.
Then the dog was eaten by a tiger.
There was a hunter who shot the tiger with a gun and killed it.
In words of Bhau
Though the story appears very simple, a book can be written in order to explain it. But in order to understand this story, the evolution of consciousness and then involution of consciousness should be explained. Only then can the story be understood.
In this story, the Ocean of consciousness is called “The forest”. And this ocean, there are innumerable drops, or, in the story, mice.
The mother of mice represents Nothing, the original shadow of the Everything. The Nothing is the state of Nirvana, and creation has taken place in the Nothing. Someone who achieves Nirvana experiences the Nothing, and then immediately experiences the Everything. Mother of mice did not want any mouse to go out of the hole. The hole is the OM point, from which creation has taken place.
The mouse eaten by the cat means consciousness is eaten by gross consciousness. The hunter’s dog eating the cat means gross consciousness eaten by subtle consciousness. Then the tiger killing the hunter’s dog means subtle consciousness is eaten by mental consciousness.
Though the tiger has achieved mental consciousness, still the journey of consciousness is not complete. Therefore, the hunter shoots the tiger with a bullet. The hunter represents a Perfect Master, and killing of tiger means that tiger gets real consciousness, the consciousness of God.
(Bhau’s awakening, 12th July 2001, Part I)
111-THE MASTER’S WAY OF TEACHING
A young Japanese boy growing up in a remote village had his heart set upon becoming a swordsman. He had heard of a master swordsman who lived in a monastery, where only pupils with great courage were accepted. This monastery was located in a deep jungle, the path to which was very difficult. Most of those who attempted to reach the master would give up and turn around half-way. Others, who succeeded in joining the master’s monastery, would leave the training half-way, finding it too difficult to go through. The boy was determined to learn the art of swordsmanship from this particular master. He undertook the journey through the jungle and after great trials and tribulations reached the monastery. His first meeting with the master left him confused. The master accepted him, but straight away put him to work, of sweeping and mopping the whole monastery.
Every day for several months the boy continued to sweep and mop the entire monastery, hoping that soon one day the master would begin training him. Finally after six months had passed, the boy decided to approach the master to ask him when his training would begin. The master saw the boy coming and asked, “What do you want boy?” The boy said, “Master I have been here for six months sweeping and mopping. During this time I have not received any instructions on swordsmanship.” The master became very annoyed and began reprimanding the boy, complaining how useless he was. “You cannot even sweep and mop the floor properly.” The master shouted, “If you cannot even do this simple chore properly, how can you possibly hope to become a skilled swordsman?” The master chased the boy away, telling him to leave if he were going to be so useless. But the boy returned to his sweeping and mopping, though now he felt even more confused. Also the thought that he had upset the master made him feel worse. He swept and mopped the floor with extra care now in order to please the master.
As he was mopping one day, the master came walking by him, and as he passed, he struck the boy on his back with his stick and then walked away. The next day again the master did the same thing. This happened repeatedly for the next several days. The boy was wondering why the master was beating him. So one day, he approached the master and asked, “Master are you upset with me?” The master said, “No my child, but why do you ask that?” The boy said to him, “You beat me every day. Why do you do this if you are not upset with me?” The master laughed and said, “This is part of your training. From now on you must attempt to dodge my blows.” The boy was confused by all this, but he continued to follow the master’s instructions. So the next day, as he continued to sweep and mop with great care, his attention was focused on the blow that he knew the master would attempt to deliver. Sure enough that day the master came in through the same hall he had the day before, and the boy was able to dodge his blow successfully. The next day the master appeared not once but several times, especially when the boy least expected him to deliver the blow. Although the boy managed to dodge some blows, for most part the boy got a good beating as the master constantly changed his strategy catching him unawares. It took months, but finally the boy became so alert to the master’s every possible move and strategy that he was able to anticipate and dodge all his blows. The boy enjoyed playing the master’s game because it seemed to please the master and it was also a diversion from his routine job of sweeping and mopping. Still, the boy continued to wonder how this beating would make him into a swordsman.
Soon after the boy had mastered the art of dodging the master’s blows the master called him one day and instructed him, “As of today, I do not want you to dodge my blows any longer. Instead, you will try to block them using your mopping stick. By the way your mopping is better but still needs improvement.” The boy could not understand the master’s ways but continued to follow his instructions.
Blocking the master’s blows proved far more difficult then dodging them. So for days the boy received a good thrashing. He would continue to focus on mopping the floor properly, while at the same time, concentrate on the master’s attack. With great difficulty, finally the boy began to defend himself using his mopping stick. The game went on for many years, until finally one day, the boy had mastered the art of defending himself with his mopping stick. He could now counter every blow the master made with his stick. The master could change his strategy to any extent, but the boy’s sense of concentration had become so sharp that even with closed eyes he could sense the master’s blow coming and turn quickly enough to block it. When the master knew that the boy had mastered this art he called him one day to say, “Your training days are almost over now and it will be time for you to leave me.” The boy was confounded, for he had not even held a sword in all these years. He complained to the master, “But master, I came here to be a swordsman and in all these years I have not received any instructions on the subject, nor have I ever held a sword.” The master looked at the boy compassionately and said, “My child, you have already become a great swordsman. But you do not believe me, so here catch this.” Saying this, the master reached for a sword nearby and threw it at the boy. The boy caught the sword and felt it in his hand. The master then removed his own sword and went to attack the boy. Without thinking, the boy moved to counter the master’s blow. The master attacked again but every blow the master made the boy easily countered. He dodged and blocked the master’s attacks in the same way that he had learnt to defend himself with the mop stick. This dance between the master and student continued for some time. At the end, the boy felt completely amazed by his own skills. He understood now that all the years of sweeping and mopping, along with the game of constant beatings that the master had played with him had made him into a great swordsman.
Master sends each of His disciples to different directions. Two souls cannot have the same direction towards spirituality. Master only knows and He teaches His disciple according to His plan which is best.
112-THE MILK-FILLED LAKE
There were two kings. One king was very fond of lakes and created different ones in various parts of his kingdom. He landscaped lush scenery, his whole kingdom he made very green and attractive.
One day he visited to other king and took him around to various places in his kingdom. The other king was very impressed. When the latter king returned back to his kingdom he thought, “I can also create lakes in my kingdom. It should be even more attractive than the lakes of that other king.”
“He asked his minister to have one lake dug in his kingdom. When the lake was dug, the second king instructed that it should be filled with milk not water. The he would invite the first king to show him. So the minister employed thousand of labourers to dig the lake. When it was excavated, the minister asked all subjects to bring a vessel of milk and fill up the lake during night.
“And then what happened?”
“Each person was thinking. Everyone is bringing a vessel of milk. If I pour in one vessel of water instead it will not be detected.”
“So everyone thought the same and poured a vessel of water into the lake.”
“The next day, it was found that the lake was filled with water. The matter was reported to the king. The king was very much upset. He called the minister and asked him to assemble the subjects, which minister did.
“One after another they approached the king. The king asked, “How did it happen? Why did you pour water into the lake when my order was to pour in a vessel of milk?”
“Each one said, “I thought that everyone would pour in a vessel of milk. So if I poured in a vessel of water, it would not make any difference.”
In words of Bhau
Avatar Meher Baba said, “There can be no compromise between truth and illusion. This is the game of illusion which deceives everyone. One cannot find truth if there is even a little bit of compromise with illusion. If you follow the truth, you should pay all attention towards the truth and don’t think about anything.”
113-THE MISCHIEVOUS CHICKEN
Before the beginning of Creation, there was nothing. No space. No time. No form. Nothing at all. Absolutely nothing.
But there was one Hen. And she had many children. She would keep all her children under her wings. She would not allow any chick to come out.
But there was a Mischievous Chicken, who felt fed up with being under her wing for ages and ages, though there was no existence of time.
One day, he got so fed up, he could not control himself. He journeyed out from under his Mother's wing. As soon as he journeyed out, the Mother Hen got scared. The Mischievous Chicken also got scared, because he saw a dazzling light. He could not face it. So he went back under his Mother's wings. The Mother Hen was very happy.
But this chicken was very, very mischievous. After ages and ages he felt fed up, and again, he journeyed out.
The Mother Hen felt scared. The Mischievous Chicken saw the dazzling light. But this time the color of the light was different. Once again, he could not face it. He returned under the Mother Hen’s wing.
In this way, after ages and ages, he journeyed out six times. Each time he returned. Each time when he journeyed out, the color of the dazzling light was different. He could not face it, and he would return.
Then the Mother Hen got upset and very angry. She decided that if the Mischievous Chicken journeyed out again, she would not care.
The Mischievous Chicken again felt bored, and the seventh time he journeyed out, and indeed, the Mother Hen did not care for him.
So the Mischievous Chicken decided to go further, though he could not face the dazzling light. And then what happened? He felt hungry. He asked himself, “What should I eat now?”
Imagination came, and Imagination said to him, "Don't worry, I am here, Eat as much as you like.”
The Mischievous Chicken felt very, very happy. He made adventures, and things that he should not have eaten, he went on eating and eating and eating.
Up until the seventh adventure, he went on eating and eating. But when he entered into the eighth adventure, his hunger was less, and he would eat less.
He went further and further, and his hunger was less and less, and he would eat less and less.
In this way, the Mischievous Chicken completed his 13th adventure. When he completed his 13th adventure, he did not feel hunger. He cried out, "What should I do now?" And he heard the words, “You eat yourself.”
So the Mischievous Chicken ate himself. And when he ate himself, he was All-Knowledge, All-Bliss and All-Power. But when he looks around, what did he find?
All the innumerable chickens that were under the wing of the Mother Hen had followed Him. So the Mischievous Chicken had to take on the responsibility of those innumerable chickens that had followed him.
That's why the Avatar comes down on earth, age after age, to look after the innumerable chickens, and He suffers. Because He is duty bound, He must look after them. He is the One who shoulders the responsibility.
In words of Bhau
In the beginning, when the Mischievous Chicken came out from under the Mother Hen's wing and saw the dazzling light, what was it?
It was the sixth mental plane, and because he had no impressions at that time, he could not have any consciousness. The different colored lights that he saw represent the different colors of the planes inside of us. These are the planes of the Subtle and Mental sphere. When he entered the seventh adventure, then, of course, he was near the gross world. When he felt hungry, and started eating, he made seven adventures in the Gross World -- that is stone, vegetable, worm, fish, bird, animal and human being. Until the seventh adventure, particularly in the animal stage -- worm, fish, animal and human being, he was eating and eating. But when he entered into the eighth adventure, he had no connection with the Gross World.
That's why his hunger was less. And it went on becoming less. When he reached the 13th adventure, that is, after crossing four planes of the Subtle World and two planes of the Mental World, there was no hunger. This is the state where you long and long for God, to become One with Him. When you cross the six planes of the Inner World, and enter into the seventh plane, you become One with God.
When the Mischievous Chicken had 13 adventures, it means that he crossed seven kingdoms of the gross World and six planes of the inner World.
When the Voice said, "You eat yourself," it means, "Eat your mind." As long as the mind is there, you remain bound with the world. When the mind goes away, then, of course, you become one with God.
What were the seven journeys in the beginning -- coming and going and seeing the dazzling light?
The Mischievous Chicken was passing through the planes. But because he had no impressions, he could not experience anything, though he was passing through the planes. Afterwards, he got consciousness of the gross world, and he passed through seven kingdoms, that is, from the stone through human being. Again, he entered into the inner world (Subtle and Mental), because this time he had impressions, and that is why he could experience it.
We also travel to the seventh plane when we are in sound sleep. But we cannot experience that we are on the seventh plane. Why? Because we have gross impressions. When we wipe out gross impressions, and have subtle impressions, then we experience the Subtle World. And when we wipe out subtle impressions, then we experience the Mental World.
But we have to become impression less. And that is why the mind has to be annihilated. And when the mind is annihilated, we experience God.
The Mischievous Chicken, after becoming God, looked around. That was the sign of coming down to Creation consciousness.
When someone gets God consciousness, Creation consciousness is necessary to work for the Universe. When that person becomes One with God, he achieves the goal of life, but he cannot work for the Universe. Why? Because for himself, he alone exists. Nothing exists beside himself. Since he only finds himself, for whom should he work?
The perfect masters and the Avatar work for the Universe, it is their duty.
Therefore, when the mischievous chicken received creation consciousness, he found creation. He deals with manyness and works for manyness, but he remains One.
The mischievous chicken story is really very important. The first time the mischievous chicken made seven journeys, he had no impressions, so he could not experience those planes. He was unable to face the light. But when he came down to the gross world, he made thirteen adventures. Of these thirteen adventures, seven are the evolution of consciousness. Then he goes through the involution of consciousness for six adventures, for a total of thirteen adventures. When he made the fourteenth adventure, he realized who he was. So, though at first he made journeys through the planes, he did not experience them, because he had no impressions.
But when he had impressions, he experienced the evolution and involution of consciousness.
The first one who became a Perfect Master is the one who comes down on earth as the Avatar. He is the same One who comes age after age, with different names, but always the same One. He came as Zoroaster, Rama, Krishna, Buddha, Jesus, Mohammed, and, in this age, as Meher Baba. But He is always the same Ancient One.
114-THE MISER'S LUCKY BREAK
Mani S. Irani
Mani told that to say God's name at the moment of dying is of great spiritual benefit, even if said inadvertently.
She related the little story of an old miser whose son was named Krishna. As the miser lay dying, devils were on one side of his bed, gleefully waiting to drag him down to hell, while angels were on the other side weeping in despair over the fate in store for the poor sinner.
With his very last breath the old miser called out to his son, "Krishna, Krishna!" and died. So now it was the angels' turn to laugh joyfully as they carried him off to heaven, while the devils gnashed their teeth over the miser's lucky break.
There is great power in the name of Avatar or Sadguru. It can lead to salvation (God-realization). Avatar Meher Baba said if anyone takes My name at his dying moment or remembers Me, he comes to Me.
(Lives of love, Mani Part 4, p. 8, Judith Garbett , 1998 © Avatar Meher Baba Perpetual Public Charitable Trust)
115-THE OLD MAN, ARJUNA AND RADHA
After the great Mahabharat war and Lord Krishna had returned to the Pandavas. He found Arjuna to have become somewhat egoistical. He had began to believe that he was most loved one of lord Krishna, and that it was because of him that Lord krishna had joined Pandavas and thus the war had been won. In short, he held that Krishna loved him the most, and that he loved Krishna the most.
Krishna did of course really loved Arjuna, and therefore He was distressed that Arjuna should be feeling and thinking thus, and this story, heard by me in my childhood, illustrates so beautifully the ways of the God-Man. One morning Krishna takes Arjuna for a walk, and as they did so, they perceived something in a nearby field. it appeared to be some creature grazing. Krishna turned towards it accompanied by Arjuna, and as they came closer, the object became an old man bending over, apparently looking for something on the ground. He seemed a simple person, old, but with a long naked sword tied his waist. When they came to him, they asked what he was doing, and he replied that he was looking for food.
“Food?” said Arjuna, “What sort of food can you find here on this earth? There is only dry grass, nothing more. “Yes, that is what I seek, dried grass, because I do not wish to hurt any living creature, or even green living vegetation. So I seek dried food.” But Arjuna the asked, “If, as you say, you do not wish any harm any creature, why do you carry sword with you?” “Oh,” he replied, “I have a long-standing grudge against some of the lovers, the so called lovers of Krishna, and particularly against certain ones.” Now that is the part of the divine game, that the God-Man remains incognito when He wishes, and so the old man did not know that the Lord was before him. Nor did he know Arjuna by sight.
Arjuna became very interested and intrigued with these words, and asked who these persons are. “Oh, what have such matters to do with you?” Go your way.” “No we are very interested, said Arjuna. “We would like to know who these persons are.” so the old man said, I am a lover of Lord Krishna. He is my beloved God, and I abhor the idea of persons who hold themselves as lovers of Him, and yet are a pain in the neck for my beloved lord.” “What do you mean by that?’ “Have you heard of Radha?” ”Yes, we have heard of Radha. She is a great lover of Lord Krishna, and indeed is the beloved of the Beloved.” The old man as it were snored at this, “Oh, you don’t know what a pain that women has given to my Beloved lord! Had she really loved Krishna even a wee bit, she would not have given Him such pain.”
(There are many stories of the pain that Lord suffered because of Radha’s love for Him, but let us just give one here)
Radha, a married women, came from her home to visit Krishna, and He was as always delighted to have her with Him in His palace. He directed the queens and maids of the palace to care for her every wish. But there were among His close women-folk, some who were jealous of Radha, being the obvious favourite among His lovers. So it is said that the hot milk given to Radha as she retired to bed, was so hot that it burnt her mouth and throat. However, absorbed as she was in the thought of her Lord, she drank it all, unaware of its heat and unaffected by it.
But at the same time, it so happened that one of Krishna’s queen was pressing His feet, and she suddenly noticed blisters on your feet. “How have you burnt them?” “yes it happened just now, because Radha, who holds My feet in her heart as most precious, was given some scaling hot milk to drink, and so the blisters came on My feet.”
Then this old man turned from Radha, and spoke of another of His lovers who regarded himself as great lover, “Have you heard of Arjuna?” Arjuna kept quiet, merely saying, “Yes, we have heard of him-but what of it?” “Do you know, he calls himself a great lover of Lord Krishna, yet he made Him his charioteer, and thus repeatedly bruised His delicate temples.”
How did this come about?
The charioteer sat below the warrior, protected from the enemy, and guided the horses according to the directions of the warrior sitting or standing above the charioteer. These directions were given by the warrior pressing his two toes to the temples of the charioteer, thus guiding the chariot this way and that as needed. So Krishna, in condescending to be Arjuna’s charioteer in the long terrible war of Mahabharata, suffered greatly in the constant bruising of His temples. The old man finished by saying, “that is why I carry this sword. If I were to meet Arjuna or Radha, I would surely kill them-even though I do not wish to harm any living creature; yet such so-called lovers of Lord have given Him so much pain that they deserve this punishment.
Thus did the lord bring home to Arjuna the folly of thinking he was one of the greatest, even the greatest lover of His.
Avatar or Sadguru always takes care of ego of His disciples. The moment it surfaces; Avatar or Sadguru brings remedy for it.
(The Divine humanity of Meher Baba vol. III, Bill Le Page, pp-134)
116-THE PERFECT MASTER ABU SAID AND YOUNGMAN
A man approached the Perfect Master Abu Said, and requested him to tell something of the spiritual path. The Master said, “The only thing I can say that your life and my life are of short duration, and we do not have enough time to waste on talk. I suggest you to go home and start remembering him. That is the best advice I can give you.
He was also asked: which is the greater blessing of God- a long life or short life? Abu Said gave this beautiful answer: if life is spent exclusively in remembrance of Beloved then a hundred years of such life is too short a span. Whereas a life of twenty-four hours spent in sensual enjoyments is too much of a burden for the soul to bear.
While he was saying these words, a young man who had spent his life to date in sensual pleasures paid heed, and approached the Master, “I have heard your words. Can you help me?” The Master replied, “Yes I can.” But the young-man was from a very rich and aristocratic family, and he did not approach Abu Said in the manner befitting one seeking help from a Master. Then he asked Abu Said, “I here you give Divine Love.” “Yes I do.”
So the young man said, “Name the price for this love. I can afford to pay.” The Master replied that he could not afford the price, but the man persisted, “No I can-I am very rich.” Abu Said smiled and said, “Divine Love is not for sale for mere gold and silver. But there is certain price which I demand for one to become my aspirant.” “Name it.” With that the Master reached under the mattress on which he was seated, and pulled out a huge meat chopper and said, “Cut off your head as offering to me.” for a moment the young-man was frightened, and the Master said, “Quick! Don’t waste time! The price is very cheap if you have the will to do it.” And suddenly for that Youngman it was the right moment and the right words, and he said, “Give me the chopper!” As he was about to cut his throat, Abu Said stopped him, and then accepted him as his disciple. In that moment of life of the man totally changed.
Master always teaches us to desire only to be one with Beloved God. It is priceless as compared to cost of life.
(The Divine humanity of Meher Baba vol. III, Bill Le Page, pp-145)
117-THE RICH MAN IN THE DESERT
"There was a Perfect Master, and he had some followers. They would garland him, bow down to him and give him presents. Every day, this program would be there with the Perfect Master. The Perfect Master would only give a short discourse, and then his followers would go away.
"One day, a rich man came. He did not bring anything. From a distance, he observed people garlanding the Perfect Master, bowing down to him and giving him presents. Then the Perfect Master gave a short discourse, and the people dispersed.
"After the people left, the rich man went to the Perfect Master.
"He did not garland him, did not bow down to him, did not give him any presents. He was teasing the Master and said, 'O Master, what a comfortable life you are leading. People come, they garland you, they bow down to you, and they give you presents. Whatever you need, you get. You are leading a very comfortable life without working. You receive all respect from people. How fortunate you are!'
"The Perfect Master said, 'One day you will come to know.'
"'Why one day?' the rich man asked. 'What is the secret behind it? There is nothing. Just see, I work and work and work. I perspire, then I earn. And without doing any work, you are better off than I am. You get everything!
"'One day you will come to know,' the Master repeated.
"Three or four times this happened. This rich man would come to the Perfect Master, but he would not pay him any respect. He would not give him anything, and he would tease him. Each time the Perfect Master would say, 'One day you will come to know.'
"Eventually, the rich man had a whim that he should go on some adventure, such an adventure that no one had done up until now. He was thinking and thinking, until he decided, 'Why not cross the desert? No one has done it. If I do it, I'll become very popular. Because I am very rich, I can afford it.'"
This is an ancient story -- at that time, there were no means of transport other than walking. Sometimes when people would go to the desert, they would use camels, but they would not cross the desert.
"This rich man called his workers and said, 'Get 100 camels ready. Load eatables and water on them in a large quantity. We have to cross the desert.'
"The workers did as instructed, and then they all started off.
"When they reached the desert, it was very hot. The rich man started pouring water on his body, continuously. The caravan went a certain distance, and the workers thought, 'He is using so much water. Suppose we find ourselves in the midst of the desert, and there is no water. We will die. It is better to warn this rich man not to use so much water.'
"The workers went to him and said, 'Master, you are using so much water. Suppose we are in the midst of the desert, and there is no water? We all will die.'
"This rich man was very, very proud. He said, 'I am paying you. Therefore, you should not make any complaint.'
"The workers said, 'When there is no water, we will not be able to drink the money which you are giving us. We will want water.'
"'Either listen to me without complaint or go away!' the rich man told them.
"All the workers left, and the rich man was alone. But because he was proud, he was going ahead, pouring water on his body. When he was in the midst of the desert, there was no more water. He was very, very thirsty. He was dying.
"Then he said, 'O God, I am dying. Give me water to drink.'
"And a man appeared with water. When he saw him, the rich man said, 'Please, I am dying of thirst. Give me a little water.'
"The man said, 'Give you water?! You have to pay if you want water.'
"'Yes, yes,' the rich man replied. 'I will pay you. How much do you want?'
"'Whatever you have here, you have to give me. Then I will take you back. Otherwise, you will die. When I go back with you, whatever you have -- your business, property, everything you own, you have to give to me.'
"The rich man said, “You want so much for water?!”
"'Then die if you don't want to give this to me. I don't care,' the man with the water answered.
"But the rich man was dying of thirst, and he had to accept this offer. Then the man started supplying him water.
"He brought the rich man back home and said, 'Now give me charge of everything.'
"The rich man had to give over his property, business, money, everything, to the man with the water. And the rich man was on the street. He was penniless; he had nothing. 'What to do now?' he asked himself.
"Then he remembered the Master.
"The rich man thought, 'He is the only one who can help me.'
"He went to the Perfect Master, who looked at him and said, 'You look so miserable! What happened to you?!'
"The rich man told the whole story to the Master.
"The Master said, 'For water, you have given everything to that man. He deceived you!'
"'I gave everything to him because I was dying,' said the rich man. 'I would have died had he not supplied water.'
"And the Master said, 'this shows that water is more valuable than your property, business, everything!'
"'Yes, Master, I realize this. I was attached to what I was doing. It is good that that man has taken everything away.'
"The Master said, "You are not free from attachment. It is still there in you. You are suffering externally and mentally. If the situation changes, you will be just the same.'
"The rich man said, 'No, Master, now I have realized.'
"And what happened?
"The man who had taken everything from this rich man was approaching. When the rich man saw him, he said, 'This is the man, Master, who has taken everything from me. But don't say anything to him, because he has saved my life.'
"When that man came, the Master said, 'You took away everything from this rich man? You charged so much for the water? Have you no shame?'
"The man replied, 'Master, he was dying, but he wanted to live. He could not live without water. So I put my conditions before him: If he wanted to live, he had to give everything to me. And he did. So it is not my fault. I did not do any injustice to him. On the contrary, he wanted to live because was attached to this world. That's why he gave everything to me.'
"The Master listened, and then he said to the rich man, 'Do you remember when you were dying? What did you say?'
"The rich man said, 'Yes, Master, I do remember. I prayed to God: 'Please give me some water, I am dying.' Then this man appeared.'
"The Master said, 'Do you know who heard your voice?'
"'No, Master, I don't know.'
"'I heard your voice,' said the Master, 'and I sent this man to you to supply you with water. And you say that I don't do anything? That I just sit here, and people come and garland me; they bow down to me, and they bring presents. That you could see, but what I really do, you cannot see.'
"The rich man said, 'Master, I now realize. Please give me shelter near you, and I will do whatever you ask of me.'
"'It is a very difficult life. You have to obey my order. You have to walk on the edge of a sword. So be careful, because you are not ready to do whatever I like.'
"'Master, I have realized it. I will never leave you. I will do my best to please you.'
"So the Master said, 'Now that property, business, your money, everything, belongs to Me. Nothing belongs to you. And this is my order. I make you the caretaker of my property, business, everything which is in your possession. I am the owner. You are only my caretaker. You eat, you have a good life, but never think that it is yours. Whatever you had, it belongs to me now. Will you do it?'
"And the rich man accepted these conditions as the Master's order.
Never think that anything belongs to you. Everything belongs to God, and you are the caretaker. If you have this attitude then God (Avatar or Sadguru) helps you because whatever you do, you do it in order to please Him.
118-THE SAINT AND THIEF
There was saint who lived on the outskirt of particular village and people will flock to him for his darshan. The saint lived in a room which housed a statue of a deity whom he worshipped wholeheartedly. People will came to take his darshan would sit with the saint and sing devotional songs along with him. The saint would encourage all who came to him to remember God every moment of their life while continuing their normal duties. And easiest way to do this was singing devotional songs or humming a tune in remembrance of the Lord. This way remembrance becomes interesting. After he would finish his song and discourse, as people departed, the saint would bless everyone by saying, “Carry on doing it my child, do it more and more, for it will lead you to God one day.
This was daily routine of the saint. One day a thief happened to be in group of the villagers sitting with the saint. He noticed the golden ornaments with which the deity was adorned and decided to steal them. When everyone was gone and the saint has retired to his room, the thief, who had hidden himself, came out and removed all the ornaments and put them in a bag. As he was about to leave, he heard the saint blessing him, “Carry on doing it my child, do it more and more, for it will one day lead you to God.”
The thief was surprised to find the saint standing next to deity. He was even more baffled by saint’s blessing. He asked the saint, “O holy one, I do not understand why you are blessing me to continue stealing.” The saint smiled compassionately and said,” I know my child that you are a thief and you have stolen the golden ornaments of the deity. The reason why I blessed you to carry on stealing is very simple. Unless you do it to such an extent that you really get fed up in your ways, you will not turn to God. So continue doing it till you are totally fed up and then you will naturally give all this up and seek God. That is why I blessed you my child.”
The thief realised the wisdom of the saint’s words and asked the saint for forgiveness, promising never to steal again.”
Often indulgence in wrong habit by taking it to extreme limit makes a person feel fed up and eventually helps him to give it up.
119-THE SEARCH FOR ETERNAL BEAUTY
And then there is the story of Raja Gopichand. He was not ugly. In fact, he was exceedingly handsome. So handsome that it is said that sixteen thousand women fell in love with him.
One day his mother was standing behind him and contemplating his extraordinary physical beauty. Suddenly she realized that his physical form was impermanent and that his beauty would vanish with the coming of old age. With this realization, she wept, and the tears fell upon his bare back.
Feeling her tears, the Raja turned around and asked her the reason for her tears in spite of all his care to see that she had all the comforts the palace could afford. She told him of her realization, and such was the power of her vision that he immediately gave everything away, became a sannyasi, and devoted his life to the search for Eternal Beauty.
One’s physical beauty is temporal and short-lived. It is the God’s unique beauty only which is reflected in living and non living beings in the world. .
(That is how it was, pp. 330, 1995 © Avatar Meher Baba Perpetual Public Charitable Trust)
Once upon a time in India, there was prince who seemed to have everything anyone could want. He lived in a large and beautiful palace filled with every luxury imaginable, and a multitude of servants waited upon him to provide for his every need and to fulfill his every wish.
Surrounded as he was with material luxury, he also had a spiritual side. He had a guru, who lived in a forest, and would visit the prince for a few weeks once a year in order to bring him spiritual instruction.
The guru lived a simple life, wearing a loincloth, carrying his staff and a begging bowl and sleeping under the trees of the forest, except when he visited the prince in his palace.
The guru and the prince would take long walks in the fields and woods outside the palace walls during their annual sojourn at the palace, and the guru would elucidate points about the spiritual path.
He would particularly recommend practicing detachment from worldly things, and would suggest the prince leave the luxuries of his kingdom and join the guru in the forest, where he could live a simple and truly spiritual life.
The prince would graciously thank his guru for his concern for the prince's spiritual well being, but would invariably respond that the time was not right for him to leave his kingdom and live in the forest.
On one of their walks outside the palace, as the guru was explaining a particularly subtle spiritual principle, he suddenly stopped his discourse in mid-sentence and started shouting, "Fire. Fire."
He became very agitated, and said, "Prince! The palace is on fire! It's all burning...a disaster. You must do something!"
The prince did not seem disturbed. He gazed upon the fire, which was indeed consuming the palace and all the bountiful luxuries within it, and said, "The fire is beautiful, isn't it?"
But his guru was beside himself, and continued to demand that the prince do something to stop the fire.
Seeing that his guru was so profoundly upset, he asked, "Why does the fire trouble you so much? What is in the palace that means so much to you?"
And the guru said, "My second loincloth is in there!"
It is very difficult to be get rid of desires which is only possible with the grace of Master.
121-THE SHE-MOUSE (SIMILE)
There once was a saint who lived in the Himalayas. He wanted to remain in a trance, undisturbed. So he made a circle and sat inside it. Many insects, however, would disturb the saint, until one she-mouse came along. She ate all the insects, thus allowing the saint to remain undisturbed.
When the saint came out of his trance, he found the she-mouse eating the insects. He was very, very happy with the she-mouse, and he said to her, "Ask anything today and I will give you that boon.”
The she-mouse replied, "I want to become a most pretty girl."
"So be it," said the Saint. "You will become a most beautiful and pretty girl!”
Instantly, the she-mouse was transformed into a most beautiful girl.
The Girl who had been a she-mouse went to the sun and said to him, "You are the most powerful, and I am the most pretty, so marry me!”
"I am not the most powerful," the sun replied. "The clouds are more powerful, because they cover me.”
The Girl then went to a Cloud and said, "I am the most pretty, and you are the most powerful, so marry me.”
The cloud said, "I am not the most powerful. The mountain is the most powerful, because when I blow, the mountain checks me and prevents me from moving.”
The Girl then went to the mountain and said, "You are the most powerful, and I am the most pretty, so marry me!"
The Mountain said, "I am not the most powerful. The mouse is most powerful, because she makes holes in me."
The girl went to the saint and said, "Please change me from a pretty girl back to a she-mouse, because a mouse, who can make holes in the mountain, is the most powerful."
In Bhau’s words:
This story is very significant. In the evolution of consciousness, you must pass through different kingdoms, but you cannot jump from any kingdom to the last one (human being). Evolution is a natural process and happens according to Divine Will.
The she-mouse achieved her ambition of becoming a beautiful girl, and she became a very beautiful one indeed. But this change was not according to Divine Will. Divine Will is very, very natural. The she-mouse had an ambition. She wanted to fulfill this ambition, and so it was fulfilled. But then she had to come back to her Original State.
Had this happened according to Divine Wish, there would have been no difficulty. She would have received a clear way to proceed further in the progression of consciousness. Ambition becomes a great distraction in the path.
122-THE SPARK THAT KINDLED THE FLAME
Dr. Abdul Ghani
Hazrat Mohiyuddin Ibnularabi relates that one of his kith and kin, by name Yahya bin Yaghan, was the king of Tilmsan. In his kingdom there lived a great soul known as Abu Abdulla Tonsi who having renounced the world was leading an ascetic life far removed from the haunts of men.
One day the king Yahya with his retinue happened to pass by the place where Abu Abdulla lived, and as they did so one of his men described the Master to the king and pointed to his place of seclusion. The king inquisitively headed his horse in that direction, and finding himself before the saint, bowed reverentially.
Conscious of being draped as he was in rich and costly garments, the king asked the saint, "Sir, is the worship of God permissible in these clothes?" The saint laughed aloud in reply and on being pressed by the king to give the reason for his laughter, explained, "I laughed at your lack of understanding. Your case is that of a dog who having feasted himself on a carcase and being smeared with blood from top to toe, yet takes particularly good care whilst urinating to raise one leg to save being polluted by stray drops. Your belly is stuffed daily with things that are unlawful, you are overloaded with acts of atrocity and injustice to people, and yet you are anxious to know what style of dress is best pleasing to God."
The words of the saint did not miss the mark, and the message cut deep into the heart of the king. He immediately renounced his throne and kingdom and asked that he be allowed to serve the saint. He was accepted.
After three days of hospitality the saint reminded the king, "A guest is welcome for three days. After this period his allowance may be said to be derived from the poor tax. You have to work now for your living. Here is a piece of rope; go to the forest, cut down firewood and sell it in the market." The king Yahya willingly submitted to the orders. He began to bring loads of firewood from the jungles, and from the price of their sale he would keep just enough for his sustenance and the remainder he would give away to the poor.
To the end of his days Yahya plied his trade in the very city of which he had been the king. People seeing him in this plight used to shed tears of pity and regret for him. But if any one approached Abu Abdulla for his spiritual help in their worldly difficulties and desires, the saint would invariably direct them to the ex-king saying, "It is better you induce Yahya to pray for you. His prayers for you will be more effective since he has renounced his kingship for God. Who knows I may have failed in such an ordeal!"
Avatar or Sadguru can bring a turning point in life any seeker to lead him on the path of spirituality,
123-THE STORY OF ANGULIMAL
Mani S Irani
This is the story of a dacoit who ruled a jungle. He was so ferocious that no one would dare cross the jungle. His name was Angulimala, which means garland of fingers. He would murder his victims, chop off their fingers, and make a garland to wear around his neck.
Despite everyone’s warnings, Gautama Buddha decides to undertake his journey through the jungle. The dacoit, on sighting Buddha, first wonders who the foolish man was to venture to his death. When he sees Buddha dressed in a monk’s robe, he felt that it would be nice to kill a monk and have his finger garland made. So he follows this monk, but he finds that the distance between them is increasing. So the dacoit increases his speed, but to his surprise, the distance between him and the monk was still increasing, although the monk was walking leisurely.
“In desperation the dacoit breaks into a run, but still the distance between him and the monk was increasing, even though the monk was not running. Totally exhausted from the chase the dacoit shouts at the monk and says, ‘Please stop, please stop.’
Buddha turns around and tells the dacoit, ‘I have already stopped my child; it is time for you to stop now.’
In words of Mani Irani:
Stopping refers to the stopping of the mind. Baba said, ‘Mind working is man, mind working fast is mad, mind slowed down is mast and mind stopped is God.’ So how do we go about stopping the mind? First slow down by introducing speed breakers.
What are these speed-breakers? Your coming and visiting Meherabad is one, visiting Baba-centers is another. If you can’t do that, then just a few Baba-lovers getting together and reading His books and discussing or talking about His stories of love and compassion, is a good way of slowing down. And if you can’t do that, then create some time during the day to remember Him or remember Him in any way you think fit. Increase these speed-breakers more and more and finally a time will come where the speed will slow down and eventually stop.”
124-THE STORY OF BALKIMI
Balmiki was a dacoit, He robbed and killed people and that’s how he made his living. This was his profession and why did he do all this? Well, he had a family to feed and this was the only profession he knew. He had killed several people like this. One day, a Perfect Master happened to pass his way. He caught the Perfect Master with intention of killing him. The Master asked, “Why do you do all this? What’s the reason?
Balmiki replied, “I have a family to feed and money that I earn goes towards supporting them. This is the only way I know.”
The Master said, “Killing and robbing is a sin. Will your family share your burden of your sin?”
Balmiki said, “Of course they will. After all, I am doing for them.”
“Have you asked them, “The Master asked?
Balmiki said, “No, But I am sure they will support me, they are my family.”
“Go and ask them, “The Master insisted “and make sure they will share the sin with you.”
“I know, “Balmiki said, “When I go to ask them, you will run away. You are only trying to trick me.”
The Master calmly assured him, “I won’t run away, if you do not trust me, then tie me up.
“This made a sense to Balmiki who proceeded to tie up the Master then went back to his family. He told his wife and children about his profession and how he earned the money that he gave to them. Finally, he asked them if they would share in his sin. When his all family members refused to share his sin, he was shocked and overwhelmed by the burden of his sins. He went back to the Master and asked for forgiveness. He pleaded with the Master to show him a way for his salvation as he was ready to undertake any kind of penance for his sins.
The Master told him to sit at one spot and not move from it, no matter what happened, and repeat the name of God, to repeat, “Rama, Rama.”
This was before Rama’s birth. Ram was one of the God’s names as given in the scriptures and the Master asked him to repeat the name of God-Rama. Balmiki said, “I will not repeat the name of God.” So the Master said, “All right, then say, Mara, Mara.”
“Balmiki agreed to this. Being a dacoit, he had killed so many people that he did not mind repeating it. So he sat on one spot for years and kept repeating, Mara, Mara.”
Over time the “ma ra” became “ra ma” and without knowing it, Balmiki was saying “rama, Rama.”
He kept repeating the name for years, sitting at one spot and he got God-realisation.
There is great power in God’s name. Even if one repeats God's name mechanically, he will reap the benefit of unburdening of sanskaras. To achieve the goal of realization one's effort and longing has to be sincere.
(Real treasure by Rustom B. Falahati, ed. 2008- Vol-2 p-116)
125-THE STORY OF KALYAN
There once was a perfect master named Swami Ramdas, who had a lover named Kalyan. Ramdas loved Kalyan very much. Though Kalyan was very obedient, he was not in the circle of the master. One day, Swami Ramdas said to his circle members, “It is dark. Bring a lamp.”
His circle members laughed. "Master, it is daylight. There is no darkness. What would we do with a lamp?”
The master took that in, and afterwards, he called Kalyan. "There is darkness everywhere. Don't you see? Bring a lamp.”
Without saying anything, Kalyan immediately brought a lamp. The circle members were very ashamed of not obeying the master as did Kalyan. Kalyan not only brought the lamp, but when the master said, "Don't you see? It is dark. Why don't you bring the lamp?" Kalyan thought it was dark and brought the lamp immediately.
And another example
Swami Ramdas came to his circle one day, a bandage around his knee. "Oh, there is terrible pain in my knee," he said. "I cannot bear it. It is really unbearable.”
The members asked, "What should we do to make you free from this pain?”
And the master replied, "Pus in my knee joint is causing me terrible pain. There is only one cure. If anyone sucks out the pus, I will be all right. But whoever does so will die."
Since Ramdas had given his circle members a choice, they were hesitant. Had it been an order, they would have done it to please their master. The master's pleasure is everything, and to seek it is the aim of life.
When Kalyan came, the master repeated, "My knee joint is full of pus. I cannot bear the pain. If anyone sucks out the pus, I will be all right. But whoever does so will die.”
Without any hesitation, Kalyan sucked out the pus. But it was not pus. Randas had hidden a mango inside the bandage, and Kalyan enjoyed the juice of the mango as he was sucking.
Kalyan was seeking the pleasure of the master. And that is a great thing.
A disciple is supposed to have such a degree of faith that if Master says it is night the disciple must sees no light but darkness even in day time. That was the degree of faith of Kalyan.
126-THE STORY OF KING JANAK AND SEEKER
Janak was a king, but a God-realized one. Though he was a king, he did not have thoughts of detachment or attachment. He had the experience of his Godhood.
"There once was a seeker roaming about for a long time. He spent twelve years going from one place to another. He did not stay in one spot. He would beg for food, he would meditate, and he would do all types of spiritual practices.
"One day, he was sitting under a tree to take rest. An old man was also sitting under that tree. He asked the seeker, 'Where do you come from?'
"This young man said, 'I am a seeker of God. I don't have any home. I do not stay in one place; just move about here and there. So how can I tell you where I have come from?'
"'What else do you do?' the old man asked.
"'I meditate. I beg for my food, and I do many spiritual practices.'
"'How long have you been doing all this?'
"'For the last twelve years,' the young man replied.
"Then the old man asked, 'Did you find God?'
"Have you received any experience of God?'
"'No, no experience. But I will definitely get it. Because I am doing this for God,' answered the young seeker.
"'Do you really want God?' the old man asked.
"'That's why I am doing this. I have nothing to do with the world. I am completely detached from the world.'
"'If you want God, I can tell you whom you should approach. And I know definitely that you will get God.'
"The young man was very curious. He said, 'Yes, please tell me. I want God!
"'There is one place called Nepal,' said the old man. 'A man who knows God lives there. His name is Janak. If you go to him, I am sure that he will give you God because you want Him.'
The old man gave the young man the address, and the young man went there.
"What does he find?
"There was a big palace, with guards standing at the gate. The seeker was amazed. The old man had mentioned the name 'Janak' but had not said that Janak was a king. The seeker asked the guards, 'Is Janak here?'
At first, the guards did not say anything, but then they answered, 'Yes.'
"The young man said, 'I want to see him.'
"The guards replied, 'Without Janak's permission, you cannot see him. So we will give him a message from you. If the king wants to see you, then, of course, we'll let you know and take you to him."
"As soon he heard the name of the king, the seeker's mind started working. 'Here I am. I just roam about here and there seeking God. And this man is a king. How can he give me God? That old man deceived me.'
"Anyway, he told the guard, 'Yes, I want to see him.'
"The guard went and told Janak. When the guard returned, he said to the young man, 'The king wants to see you. Come with me.'
"The young man went along with the guard. He saw the king sitting on a throne, surrounded by all sorts of comforts. He was thinking, 'Now I have been misguided.'
"Janak asked the young man to sit on a luxurious chair, and asked, 'What do you want?'
"'I want God,' the man replied.
"'I can give you God. But you have to obey my instructions.'
"'If you give me God, I will obey everything.'
"Janak said, 'You have come a long way. You are tired. So I want you to take rest for three days. Then I will tell you what you have to do.'
"The young man said, 'I am not tired. I just go on walking from one place to another. So please give me an order. What do you want?'
"'You said to me that you would obey my order. But now when I gave you an order, you say that you are not tired!' the king replied. 'This is not obedience. This is what you want; not what I want.'
"The young man could not say anything. He was taken into a room furnished with all sorts of comforts. He had a sitting room, a bedroom. The rooms were decorated; different pictures were on the walls. He was thinking, 'How can I get God here? To find God, one has to observe fasts and silence, do meditation, beg for one's food. Here everything is luxury and nothing but.'
"Then his food came, many dishes, and the young man thought, 'Definitely, I cannot get God here. I must go out of this place. But how? Everywhere there are guards. Now I am in trouble. What to do?'
"Though he ate, his mind was working. He had not seen any dishes like these at any time during his life. He was from a poor family; he would beg for food. It was too much for him and also too embarrassing.
"Afterwards, he was taking rest, but his mind was working: How to get out of this palace? He was preparing a plan. How to escape?
"And what does he find?
"The ceiling of the room was coming down and down. He thought that if he slept, the ceiling might fall down, and he would die. So he could not sleep at all. All the time, he was observing the ceiling gradually coming down and down. Then, the next morning, he was given a nice breakfast, but he could not eat. He was very restless, surrounded by so many thoughts.
"King Janak called him and asked, 'Did you sleep last night?'
"'Not at all.'
"'Was the bed not good?' the king asked. "Or the food?'
The man said, 'Such a bed I have never seen in my life. It was so comfortable. I never ate such food in my life; it was delicious.'
"'Then why did you not sleep?' the king asked.
"'My mind was full of thoughts -- that for God one has to follow all types of austerities, but here I find all luxury. Then I saw the ceiling coming down and down. I thought that if I slept, I would die, because the ceiling would fall down. So I could not sleep.'
"Janak asked, 'Do you know what spiritual life is? The spiritual life is not just simply to beg for food, walk long distances, and follow all austerities. These have no meaning. You were scared because you saw the ceiling coming down and down. It shows that you have attachment to the world. Had you remained detached, you would not have felt fear. Here you see me. I am a king. I am ruling over the country, but I am always detached. Therefore, what is spirituality?
"'Spirituality is complete detachment from the world, from desires, from temptation and from all wants and expectations. I have no attachment to anything, and I am always happy because I am not attached. I do my duty in the form of a king. But I am not bound. If good food is served or bad food, it is just the same to me. Now you are thinking about spirituality, and you make distinctions about good food and bad food. You make distinctions between comfort and discomfort. This is the play of your mind. As long as your mind is there, you have thoughts, you have desires, and you have attachments. When you think of detachment, you remain attached with your negative thoughts. As long you have attachments, you are not free.'
"Then the young man understood, and then he said, 'Now I understand. Give me your order.'
"The king said, 'Still you have to roam about, because you are not free from your attachment to detachment. Go and beg for food and do meditation for a further twelve years. Then you come to me. I will give you God-Realization'
"'I will obey your order one hundred percent, and according to it, I will return after twelve years,' replied the seeker.
"Again, the young man went out and started roaming. He would get many thoughts and counter-thoughts. Actually, he was spending the bindings of attachment and detachment which are created through the mind -- desires, wants, temptations, etc. After twelve years, the young man again went to King Janak. Because he was ready for it, the king gave the seeker God-Realization in a moment.
In words of Bhauji
Detachment is freedom from desires and wants. You must have observed a cashier in a bank. He deals with money during his duty hours. But when he goes home, does he think about money? He does not. Thinking about money, of course, is very natural when he is at work. He is very careful about it and keeps a proper account of everything. When he goes home, he forgets about money. He does not remember it. He remains detached, because he knows that it is the bank's money, not his. So also, if you do any duty, know well that you are doing it for Me. When you are doing it for Me, you will remain detached. Everything belongs to Me, so do not think that it belongs to you.
"It is very difficult to obtain detachment. If you just take the negative side, that nothing belongs to you, and you meditate that nothing belongs to you, this meditation comes to you through your mind. And the mind is the thing that keeps you attached to everything. The mind should become completely empty of impressions, only then will you be completely detached from everything. The mind itself allows you to go on repeating things which do not belong to you. You feel that you are advancing. But you are not advancing, you are bound.
"When you are free from impressions, you think about neither attachment nor detachment. You enjoy full freedom. Never think that if you just have negative thoughts, you will become detached from anything. You are still attached, but in a negative form.
127-THE STORY OF TUKARAM
There is a story of saint Tukaram. He lived in a hut with his wife and children, but with no means of livelihood. Yet his poverty was enriched by the Name of the Lord and the love of the Lord. The ruler of the time, Shivaji, tried to provide Tukaram with wealth, sending a platter of jewels to him, which his wife received and was very happy. But when Tukaram returned to the hut he said, “What are you trying to do? Do you want to become poor by possessing this?” and he snatched the platter and threw it in the river saying, “No, no, our wealth is something quite different! These jewels are pebbles, they are sands! What will you do with these things? The treasure we are holding is something much more. This platter will reduce you to poverty, whereas our poverty is making us live in the palace of Lord, in his presence all the time!
One is bound to get what he sincerely prays for. Avatar or Sadguru can give anything but at the same time Avatar or Sadguru wants one to think as why, how and what to ask for?
(Over the years with Meher Baba, Bill Le Page, ed. 1999, pp-111)
128-THE VISION WAS GRANTED
Dr. Abdul Ghani
There lived a saint Syed Hasan Rasul-mema who was well-known as an adept in giving spiritual aspirants a vision of the Prophet Mohammed. His wife once requested him to give her, too, such a vision. The saint agreed and asked her to prepare herself by bathing and adorning herself with beautiful garments and jewellery as befitting a bridal occasion. The wife was delighted and busied herself accordingly.
In the meanwhile, her brother came to the house and the saint said to him: "Go and see what your sister is doing. Is it befitting her age that she occupies herself thus? I have become old now and indifferent to such enticements. Is she thinking of marrying again?"
The brother was shocked to find his sister in fact dressed like a bride and taunted her: "Are you in your proper senses? What is the meaning of making yourself up as a bride at your age? You must be surely mad. Or perhaps your husband is right and you are thinking of a second marriage."
The saint's wife crumpled up completely at being made to look such a fool, and in a fit of anger and intense disappointment, she shattered her bangles, tore her clothes and burst into uncontrollable tears and wails. After a time, she became exhausted and fell into sleep; and in that sleep she had a vision of the Prophet Mohammed.
She woke very cheerful and happy, and told her husband of the experience. But she asked him why he had treated her as he did. He replied: "You had pride in your heart. You never really believed that I was capable of giving to anyone a vision of the Prophet. In the situation I created, you were humiliated, and as soon as that occurred, the vision was granted. In the same way the aspirant never achieves the Goal as long as the ego is active within him in any form."
Avatar or Sadguru adopt many ways to draw His disciples towards Him. Avatar or Sadguru makes use of maya itself to distract His disciples away from Maya.
(It so happened, ed. William Le Page, pp. 96-97, 1978 © Meher Baba Foundation
129-THE WASHERWOMEN’S SON AND HIS LOVE
Once the Perfect Master Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya was attending a musical concert and singers were giving a feast of songs on Divine Love. At the height of performance the Master developed an ecstatic mood, and waving his handkerchief aloft he cried, “Alas, I have not equaled the washer women’s son in this respect.
The disciples and attendants around the Master, out of respect for him, did not ask about his exclamation. But a few days later the great disciple Amir Khushru had opportunity to tackle him on the matter. Master related this story in reply:
A washerwoman’s son, doing laundry work for royal household, fell deeply in love with the princess without having seen her physically. The youth would pass his days in dreaming of her celestial beauty, and his sole occupation became one of the washing and ironing her clothes in all manner of artistic and loving care.
For some time the youth continued to hold this love for the princess in secret, and the world had no inkling of the agonies of separation he was suffering in her innermost heart. But his health in consequence began to deteriorate, and eventually his mother came to know the real cause of it. She was greatly frightened; this love of a menial for a royal princess could be a matter of life and death. It could not in any form be confessed, nor could it be suppressed if the youth’s health was to improve. The washerwomen therefore finally decided upon a trick which she hoped would succeed in wearing her son’s love for the princess.
One day after returning from the palace wailing and crying and with beating of head symbolic of great distress, she told her son the sorrowful news that the princess had died. The young man paused for a moment in silent grief, and then with a painful cry dropped down dead. Imagine the thought and feeling of the poor mother! She never dreamt that her action, meant for the best, would produce such result. But she could not share the secret of her son’s death with anyone, and so continued to suffer greatly alone.
One day on her usual visit with laundry to the royal household, the princess very carefully remarked to her, “Oh, woman, of late I find yours washing not very neat and tidy, it does not smell of love as usual. At this washer women could not control her hidden grief any longer; she wept and related her whole story. The princess heard the sorrowful tale very gravely, and requested women to take her to place where the silent lover lay buried. So one night the princess stealthily slipped out of palace accompanied with washerwomen. When she beheld the grave, the young man’s kindled her own latent flame and miraculously the grave opened and the princess interned herself alive.
The king was shocked at the news, and ordered that grave be opened to be sure of the real facts. It was so. The king and his courtiers saw the two lovers fused as it were, into one body with only heads entirely separate. The king ordered the grave to be closed again and said, “Thus the Divine Love joined them, and we should not disturb them any way.”
After recounting this tale, Master remarked, “It is this type and quality of love which brings about the state of Divine Union.”
Love on subtle plane need no physical contact. Love for God from gross plane to mental plane varies in degrees and ends in divine union.
(Over the years with Meher Baba, Bill Le Page, ed. 1999, pp-123)
There was a poor woodcutter who earned his livelihood by gathering firewood in the forest and selling it in the market. Because of his constant work in the forest, in course of time he became friendly with a monkey. They would both share woodcutters’ food of chapatti and vegetables, and in return the monkey would share with him fruits of the forest. This continued over a time, and both were very happy in their friendship. Then one day the woodcutter found in the forest a beautiful diamond bracelet, and thinking it could be valuable, he went immediately to the city, and finding a jeweller, he was paid a fantastic price for it. Overnight he had become a very wealthy man, and built a huge home and garden with all manner of luxuries and naturally no longer went to forest to cut wood.
Some months passed, and his friend the monkey came to him saying, “Friend, why don’t you come to forest and be with me anymore?” “I am sorry but I have no need to come. I am now very rich man.” The monkey wept on hearing this, and said, “You were the only friend I had in the forest. Now I am alone, without shelter, and often without food you brought with you, I have so little to eat. I am starving.” This touched the heart of the simple man, and taking the monkey with him to a lawyer, he transferred the entire estate to the monkey.
Overnight he became again a poor man, and the monkey very rich. So the woodcutter returned to the forest to begin with his old profession. After some months he noticed that the monkey no longer comes to join him. So he went to him in his great home, and asked, “Friend, what is wrong? You no longer come to the forest to be with me.” The monkey raised his snout and replied, “I never associate with fools.”
The disciple has to be innocent like a child
(The divine humanity vol. III Bill Le Page, III, pp-137)
131-THE YOUNG SUFI'S LOVE FOR GOD
Bill Le Page
Three young Sufis were condemned to death by the Sultan for heresy. One stepped forward, asking to be beheaded first. The Sultan was amazed, and asked why a man in the prime of life should seek death so eagerly.
The Sufi replied that every moment in life is precious because it can be spent in remembrance of the Beloved, and he wished to give his brothers the extra moments of life by dying first. "One moment of this world is better than a thousand years of the next world, because this is the place of service and that is the place of proximity, and proximity is gained by service."
The Sultan was so impressed by the young Sufi's love for God that he pardoned all three and said, "Ask a boon."
They replied, "The only boon we ask of you is that you should forget us, and neither make us your favourites nor banish us from your court, for your favour and displeasure are alike to us."
The Sultan wept, and dismissed them with honour.
Remembrance of God while carrying duties in the world is most desirable and it can lead one on the path of spirituality.
(The turning of the key, pp. 153-154, 1993 © Bill Le Page)
132-THEN WORK LEFT ME
Bill Le Page
Or the story of the great Sufi Master who even after taking the vows of discipleship continued his trade of blacksmithing.
Then one day whilst listening to a blind man reciting The Koran outside his shop, he became so absorbed that he put his hand into the fire without using the pincers and drew out a red-hot piece of iron. Seeing this, his apprentice fainted.
But when the Master came out of his state of ecstasy he left the shop forever, saying, "I left work and returned to it; then work left me and I never returned to it again. It is only God Who in His providence gives and takes away
A soul on subtle plane remains unaffected from adversities of the gross plane as subtle plane superimposes gross plane.
133-WHY I SAY THIS WAS NO SACRIFICE
After the battle of Kurukshetra, the five Pandava brothers performed a great sacrifice and made very large gifts to the poor. All people expressed amazement at the greatness and richness of the sacrifice and said that such a sacrifice the world had never seen before.
After the ceremony, there came a little mongoose. Half his body was golden, the other half brown, and he began to roll on the floor of the sacrificial hall. He said to those around, "You are all liars; this was no sacrifice."
"What!" they exclaimed. "You say this was no sacrifice! Do you know how much money and how many jewels were poured out to the poor? Everyone became rich and happy. This was the most wonderful sacrifice any man ever performed."
But the mongoose said, "There was once a little village and in it there dwelt a poor Brahman with his wife, his son, and his son's wife. They were very poor and lived on small gifts made to them for preaching and teaching. There came in that land a three-year famine, and the poor Brahmin suffered more than ever. At last, when the family had starved for days, the father brought home one morning a little barley flour which he had been fortunate enough to obtain. He divided it into four parts, one for each member of the family. They prepared it for their meal and, just as they were about to eat, there was a knock at the door.
"The father opened it and there stood a guest." Now, in India a guest is a sacred person; he is as God for the time being, and must be treated as such. "So the poor Brahmin said, 'Come in, sir, you are welcome.' He set before the guest his own portion of food, which the guest quickly ate. But instead of expressing thanks, the guest said, 'Oh sir, you have killed me. I have been starving for ten days and this tiny morsel of food has only increased my hunger.'
"Then the wife said to her husband, 'Give him my share,' but the husband said, 'No.' The wife, however, insisted, saying, 'Here is a poor man. It is our duty as householders to see that he is fed, and it is my duty as a wife to share with you your obligations. You have no more to offer him, so it is my duty to now offer my portion.' And so saying she gave her share to the guest, who hungrily devoured it.
"'I am still burning with hunger,' the guest complained after eating the wife's portion, so the son said, 'Take my portion also. It is the duty of a son to help his father to fulfill his obligations.' The guest ate the son's portion also but was still not satisfied. The son's wife then offered her share, and the guest ate this as well and, at last, felt satisfied. Blessing the family, the guest left the house.
"That night, all four in the family died of starvation. A few specks of the barley flour had fallen on the floor, and when I rolled my body on them, half of it became golden as you see. Since then I have been traveling all over the world, hoping to find another sacrifice like that, but nowhere have I found one. Nowhere else has the other half of my body been turned into gold? This is why I say this was no sacrifice."
Sacrifice may be of many degrees and is a kind of love for God. It much depends on as how much one can give his happiness and own the suffering of others.
(That is how it was, pp. 278-280, 1995 © Avatar Meher Baba Perpetual Public Charitable Trust)
134- WILL AND WISH
At the time of Prophet Muhammad, people were very illiterate and if someone in the village knew how to sign his name he would be considered to be very learned and the whole village.
Prophet Muhammad would tell the people that everything happens according to Divine Will. So one day one person from the village went to see Prophet Muhammad and he saw some people sitting near him and the Prophet was telling people that everything happens according to the Divine Will. When villagers returned to his village He told the village headman, “Sir, today I had gone to see Prophet Muhammad and he was telling the people that everything happens according to Divine Will. Is it a fact?
And the village headman said, “No, it is not a fact. When I feel hungry, I eat. No body can stop me and if don’t want to eat, I won’t. It is my will, my free will. Whatever Prophet Muhammad is telling is wrong.
So the villager told village headman, “Why don’t you go and tell Prophet Muhammad? Everyone listens to him without raising an objection. You are clever and when you ask such questions Prophet Muhammad will stop repeating such things.
So the village headman said, “I will go see Prophet Muhammad.”
Prophet Muhammad was sitting with the people and the village headman goes to see him and said, “May I ask one question?”
And prophet Mohammaed very lovingly said, “Yes, yes, ask. What do you want?”
And the village headman said, “I have heard that you are saying that everything happens according to Divine Will.”
And Prophet Mohammed said, “Yes, it is a fact. Everything happens according to the Divine Will.
And the village headman said, “I am not going to accept this. I am very learned. Do not think that I am illiterate like other people. Whatever I want to do, I do. Whatever I don’t want to do I don’t do. When I want to eat I eat. And when I don’t want to eat I don’t eat. I don’t. This is my free will. Where is your Divine Will?”
And Prophet Mohammed said, “Yes whatever you say the Divine Will is also there.”
And the village headman said, “Prophet Mohammed you have not been telling the truth. You are making the people timid. I can do anything according to my free will. I am brave. And whatever I say is also correct. Whatever happens for me is according to my free will and not according to the Divine Will.
Prophet Mohammed said. “Everything happens according to Divine Will and whatever you are saying is also according to Divine Will.”
Then the village headman said to Prophet Mohammed, “You have to prove it.”
And Prophet Mohammed said, “I will prove it. All right stand up.” And the villager headman stood up. Prophet Mohammed was looking, ignoring the village headman until he got angry and said to Prophet Mohammed, “Why don’t you reply. Why do you ignore me? All you are doing is looking around. This means that you don’t know and accept what I say.”
And Prophet Mohammed said, “You are very, very impatient. I am replying to your question and it appears you are in haste. All right, lift one of your legs. And the village headman lifted one leg. And again Prophet Mohammed continued to kook from side to side completely ignoring him.
This time the village headman could not bear it and said,”I know Prophet Mohammed you cannot reply to my question. You just ignore me. Just accept that whatever one does is according to one’s free will.”
And Prophet Mohammed smiled and said, “Young man you are really impatient. All right now lift your second leg.”
And the village head man said, “Lift the other leg. What do you want to say? If lift the other leg I will fall down.”
Ans Prophet Mohammed said, you wanted an explanation about free will and I have given it to you. You think yourself as very learned but you did not understand.”
And the village headman said,” You can deceive others but you cannot deceive me. You made me exercise and you say that you have explained freewill to me.
And the Prophet Mohammed smiled and said, “Young man, I have explained it all to you but you could not understand. All right I explain it again to you. When I asked you to stand up, you were able to stand up. I say to you that both of your legs are under the Divine will. But you do not believe Me. When I asked you to lift one of your legs, you did so thinking that you were able to because of your freewill. But look now at your free will you could not move. Even you tried how much could you move? This shows the extent of what you think your free will is. But when I asked you to lift the other leg you could not do so at all. And you became useless. So you see your own free will of lifting your leg made you useless. Really speaking, there is free will it is only product of your intellect. Now I will tell you not to become useless. Follow the Divine Wish, one day you will know the divine Will. Actually everything happens according to Dine Will. And if you think free will is there, it makes you useless.
In Bhau’s words:
Avatar Meher Baba said that the divine wish changes age after age when the Avatar comes down on earth. He gives a fresh wish according to the situation of humanity
(Spiritual training programme–Bhau Kalchuri ed. 2005 pp-149)
135-WINNING THE MIND
A slave went around looking for work. He would tell those who might employ him that he would work for free, but that he had to be kept busy all the time. If an would be master failed to keep him occupied all the time, then he would eat him up.
The slave worked for a lot of different masters and ended up eating them all because, sooner or later, the master would run out of work for the slave.
Nobody knew to control this slave and all the masters who tried would eventually fail and be eaten. Then, there came a wise master. He had heard of the slave and agreed to hire him. Even when the slave explained the condition under which he would work, the master agreed. He told the slave to bring a ladder and set it up against the wall.
Then the master asked the slave to do some work around his house and told the slave that as soon as the work is done, he should start climbing up and down the ladder; that was his next job.
The slave finished his work and was happy that he could now eat up the new master when he suddenly remembered that the master had given him another task as well, to climb up and down the ladder. So the slave kept doing this until the master came around and gave him some other work to do. But again he instructed him, “As soon as you finish this work, then your next job is to climb up and down the ladder,” This went on day after day, month after month and finally the slave died.”
In words of Mansari
Here slave is one’s mind. The masters whom the slave ate up are ordinary human beings. The wise Master is the Perfect Master. Climbing up and down the ladder represents repeating of God’s name.
Most ordinary humans are unable to keep their mind occupied, unable to control it and mind overwhelms them. However, under the guidance of the Master and constant repetition of His name while attending worldly duties, keeps the mind under control and eventually quiets it.
136-YOGI WALKING ON WATER AND SADGURU
There was a yogi who was engulfed in making miracles and collecting flowers and he had many followers, He was very, very proud. He was thinking that he had great power and that no one was equal to him.
At the same time was a Perfect Master, who lived in a secluded place along with his few followers. He did not meet with anyone; he would remain in seclusion doing His universal work. One evening, someone came to meet Master.
“but the Master did not meet him. So the man went to tell the yogi. “There is a man who calls himself a Perfect Master. I went to see him, but he did not meet me. You just see, yogi maharaj. You have so many followers. You meet everyone. And this Perfect Master did not meet me. I felt very bad. Now, the only recourse is that I go to him and challenge him on your behalf. Should I do it?”
“Yes, yes. Do it.” replied yogi. “Go and challenge him. I don’t like such false gurus. He has no power, and still he poses as if he does. Go and challenge him in hard words.”
So the person went to the Perfect Master. This time, the Master was informed about the man. The Master called him. When the man went to Master, the Master asked very lovingly, “What do you want.”
“That man said, “I want to know whether you are a Perfect Master?”
“Yes, yes. I am Perfect Master,” Perfect Master answered politely.
“What miracles do you perform if you are a Perfect Master?
“And the Master replied, I do not perform miracles.”
Then the man spoke angrily. “Stop calling yourself Perfect Master. If you cannot perform any miracles, it shows that you have no power. See my yogi. He performs so many miracles because he has power. You don’t have any.”
Again, very politely, the Master said, “Whatever your yogi does is just child’s play. It has no meaning. It is useless.
The man even got angrier, “Should I go to the yogi and tell him, that whatever he does is a child’s play. It is useless.”
The Master smiled and said, very lovingly, “Go, and tell him.”
The man left. He told yogi, “Whatever miracles you perform, the Perfect Master says that it is just child’s play?”
“Wait and see what I do.” responded yogi. “I will make this Perfect Master bow down at my feet, just wait.”
So Master gave the yogi the opportunity. Along with his close disciples, the Master left his place for the yogi’s ashram. There was a river in between. The Master sat down on the bank of the river, waiting for a ferry boat.
The yogi collected all of his followers, thousand of them, and came to river. He looked at the Perfect Master and said, “You are waiting and waiting for the boat. And see what I do?”
The yogi walked on the water and crossed river. When he came to other side, he said, “O, Perfect Master! Did you see my power? I walked on the water to cross river while you remained waiting for the boat.”
“Yes, I accept that you are very powerful,” the Master said very politely. “You walked on the water to cross the river.”
And the yogis said, “Then come and bow down to my feet.”
“I am waiting for the ferry boat. When the boat comes, I will pay one penny and cross the river. So what is the worth of your power? “One penny.” said the Master.
And yogi realised that whatever the Master said was correct. And the yogi himself came to the Master and bowed down to him before all others.
Display of occult power before others is no good. It is no sign of spiritual advancement. Instead it de-generates spiritual progress. Real power is that which makes one free from all bindings and gives eternal freedom.
(Bhau’s first awakening, 28th August, 2002, part I)
|SL NO||NAME OF BOOK||AUTHOR|
|1||Ancient One||Eruch Jessawala|
|2||Bhau Messages||Bhau Kalchuri|
|3||Bhau’s awakening||Bhau Kalchuri|
|5||Divine humanity of Meher Baba Volume II||Bill Le page|
|6||Divine humanity of Meher Baba Volume III||Bill Le page|
|7||God Speaks||Meher Baba|
|8||In the Company of Avatar Meher Baba||Dhakephalkar|
|9||Is that so||Eruch Jessawala|
|10||It so happened||Bill Le page|
|11||Letters from the mandali||Jim Mistry|
|12||Life at its best||Meher Baba|
|13||Lives of love||Judith Garbett|
|14||Lord Meher||Bhau Kalchuri|
|15||Meher awakening||Bhau Kalchuri|
|16||Meher Baba Calling||Adi K. Irani|
|17||Over the years with Meher Baba||Bill Le page|
|18||Seekers of Love||Amiya Kumar Hazra and William Keith|
|19||Spark of Truth||C. D. Deshmukh|
|20||Still Dancing with Love||Margaret Craske|
|21||Story by||By Agnes Baron|
|22||That is how it was||Eruch Jessawala|
|23||The Ancient One||Naosherwan Anzar|
|24||The real treasure vol. I, II , III &IV||Rustom B. Falahati|
|25||The spiritual training programme||Bhau Kalchuri|
|26||The turning of the key||Bill Le page|
|27||Words of Kabir & other stories||Sam Kerawala|
|Abhor||Regard with distrust or hatred|
|Alluring||Attracting / enchanting|
|Arrogant||haughty/full of assumptions|
|Ascetic||One who leads a retired life/recluse|
|Austerity||Self discipline/ severity|
|Battered||Damaged/ worn away|
|Blurted out||Utter abruptly|
|Bravado||Show of courage/boast|
|Brim||Upper edge/filled to top|
|Brittle||Fragile/ not tough|
|Budge||Not make slightest movement|
|Cohabited||Had physical sex|
|Communion||Fellowship/ exchange of ideas|
|Consort||Spouse /husband or wife|
|Convalescence||To regain health|
|Crucifixion||Dying on cross|
|Despondent||Depressed / dejected|
|Discreet||Judicious / thoughtful|
|Discrimination||To make difference|
|Duckling.||A small young|
|Encrusted||Covered with crust|
|Exhaustion.||State of being exhausted|
|Exorbitant.||Excessive/ beyond limit|
|Fecal Matter||Green weeds|
|Figs||Many seeded fruits/ (anger)|
|Filthy||Dirty / morally impure|
|Furious||Agitated/filled with anger|
|Gesticulated||Expression through body|
|Giggled||Laughed in silly manner|
|Glimmer||Faint or dim light/ inkling|
|Gnash||To grind teeth|
|Harem||Ladies room (Janan-khana)|
|Hospitality||Friendly reception to strangers|
|Imitate||To copy act|
|Insolence||haughtiness / impudence|
|Intercede||Plead/ act for another|
|Interjected||To speak in between/ interrupt|
|Intrigued||Thought of foul play|
|Jig||A lively dance|
|Kernel||Soft inner part of the shell|
|Magnanimous||Noble / kind|
|Matron||House keeper/ elderly women|
|Medieval||Pertaining to middle ages|
|Mire||Bog/swamp/ (dal dal)|
|Monastery||Convent/ residence of retired men|
|Monotonous||wearisome / uniform tone|
|Morsel||A small piece of food|
|Obscenities.||Indecent / Filthy utterance|
|Paddles||To move in water splashing it|
|Pecking||Strike with a beak|
|Peeked||To kook inside|
|Penance||Act of self-mortification|
|Pork||Flesh of swine used as food|
|Profound||Intense / deep|
|Prostitute||Harlot/ who sells her body for sex|
|Pulpit,||Platform/seat for preacher|
|Pumpkin||Large globular edible fruit|
|Rascal||Mean fellow/ rouge/villain|
|Regalia||Privileges of a king|
|Remorseful||Full of regret|
|Renunciation||Self denial/ to lead ascetic life|
|Retinue||Train of attendants|
|Reverence||Act of respect|
|Reveries||Day dreaming/ illusion|
|Ruffians||Lawless brutal person/robber|
|Sauntering||Walking in leisurely manner|
|Scampered||Fight in haste|
|Scoffed||Taunted / mocked at|
|Scorned||Hold in contempt/blamed|
|Scrupulously||Without any doubt/fearfully|
|Shallow||Having little depth|
|Shepherd||A man who tends sheep/ (garedia)|
|Snored||Made noise as in sleep|
|Sojourn||Short stay in a palace|
|Solitude||Seclusion / loneliness|
|Soot||Black substance coming of burning wood|
|Speculate||Form opinion /Imagine/guess|
|Strangling||Killing by pressing neck|
|Submerge||To get into water|
|Tormented||Put to severe pain|
|Torrent||Violent flow of water|
|Torso||Trunk/lower part of body|
|Tramped out||Walked with heavy steps|
|Trivial,||Small / unimportant|
|Twig||Small branch of tree|
|Vultures.||Carrion eating bird|
|Waded||Entered into water|
|Weird||Strange / unnatural|
|Whip||A lash attached to rod / (chabuk)|
|Whit||A bit/smallest part|
|Wretch||Miserable man/vice man|
O Parvardigar — the Preserver and Protector of all!
|You are without Beginning, and without End, Non-dual, beyond comparison, and none can measure You.|
You are without colour, without expression, without form, and without attributes.
You are unlimited and unfathomable, beyond imagination and conception, eternal and imperishable.
You are indivisible; and none can see You, but with Eyes Divine.
You always were, You always are, and You always will be;
You are everywhere, You are everything; and You are also beyond everywhere and beyond everything.
You are in the firmament and in the depths; You are manifest and unmanifest, on all planes and beyond all planes.
You are in the three worlds, and also beyond the three worlds;
You are imperceptible and independent.
You are the Creator, the Lord of lords, the knower of all minds and hearts;
You are omnipotent and omnipresent.
You are Knowledge Infinite, Power Infinite, and Bliss Infinite.
You are the Ocean of Knowledge, all-knowing, infinitely knowing, the Knower of the past, the present, and the future, and You are Knowledge Itself.
You are all-merciful and eternally benevolent;
You are the Soul of souls, the One with infinite attributes.
You are the Trinity of Truth, knowledge, and Bliss,
You are the Source of Truth, the Ocean of Love; You are the Ancient One, the Highest of the High;
You are Prabhu and Parameshwar; You are the Beyond-God, and the Beyond-Beyond God also;
You are Parabrahma, Allah, Elahi, Yezdan, Ahuramazda, and God the Beloved.
You are named Ezad - the only One worthy of worship.
We repent, O God most merciful, for all our sins; for every thought that was false or unjust or unclean; for every word spoken that ought not to have spoken; for every deed done that ought not to have been done.
We repent for every deed and word and thought inspired by selfishness, and for every deed and word and thought inspired by hatred.
We repent especially for every lustful thought and every lustful action; for every lie; for all hypocrisy; for every promise given but not fulfilled; and for all slander and backbiting.
Most especially also we repent for every action that brought ruin to others; for every word and deed that has given others pain; and for every wish that pain should befall others.
In your unbounded mercy, we ask you to forgive us, O God, for all these sins committed by us, and to forgive us for our constant failures to think and speak and act according to Your will.
Beloved God, help us all to love you more and more ,and more and more, and still yet more, till we become worthy of union with You; and help us all to hold fast Baba’s daaman till the very end.
WHY AND HOW TO SPREAD BABA’S NAME?
It is ground reality that we always find Baba lovers very short in number in any public functions or gathering as compared to followers of other so called saints and leaders of various religion and sects. Though they are neither God-realised nor they claim so, except a guru or teacher but have large followings, funds and have established number of institutions.
If you ask any outsider whether he knew or heard of Meher Baba’s name? Hardly, one in 1000 or one in 10000 would answer yes. Take Sai Baba, almost everyone knew whether he is devotee of Sai Baba or not. Even local or regional saints are known to many in addition to their large following. These lines may be disappointing but Baba lover need not feel discouraged rather we should accelerate our efforts to spread Meher Baba’s name.
Let us think what could be the reason. Following answers may be read as guess work of mine.
Answer-1- It is all going according to Meher Baba’s will which superimposes over all events in the world.
Answer-2- It is also acceptable that everything and any event in the world in one or other way is the manifestation of God- Avatar Meher Baba and so to say all other saints & leaders of all religions and sects, represent Meher Baba and they including their followers are indirectly following Meher Baba.
Answer-3- It is also consistent with Baba’s assertion that I have not come for the crowd; I have come for those few ones who are lost in the crowd exclusively meant for masts. Coming into direct contact of a Sadguru or Avatar requires lifetime past preparations, hence lucky ones could reach Meher Baba
All Baba lovers even mandali anticipated breaking of silence and manifestation of Meher Baba in His lifetime. There are different opinion of Baba lovers about breaking of silence and manifestation of Avatar Meher Baba. Someone would say Baba has broken His silence; manifestation has taken place as so many have come to Baba after dropping His body, or manifestation is yet to take place. No one knows in what language (out of three) Meher Baba spoke on breaking of His silence and manifestation. Any guess may fall short of reality. Meher “Baba made it clear to the mandali, “The five living Perfect Masters would not be in the limelight for at least one hundred years after He, the Avatar, dropped His body. It may be wise to conclude, therefore, that if anyone claims to be a Perfect Master within this span of time (1969 to 2069); He should be looked upon with considerable suspicion.”
Baba also said “All Masters are one in consciousness. One Master is not greater than another; the disciple must, however place his own Master above other Masters, until he transcends the domain of duality and realizes unity.” So we are to look towards Meher Baba only.
It is another guess which may be found logical. Almost all other sects and religious leaders give some kind of physical or mental training which brings some kind of relief at physical or mental level and common man gets attracted easily who are always in search of material benefit which may come from any source. Even many get addicted in process of meditation or yoga in delusion of progressing on spiritual path or to have attained some status or position to train even others. But Baba said it is far from reality. One does only get physical or mental relief from such practices temporarily but no spiritual benefit. One’s aim should be to go spiritual. Baba said in simple words, “Your goal is to become one with God since I am God (your Goal) so come to Me. Pray and remembers Me.” These simple words are even difficult to believed and grasped by even intellectuals. General approach towards easy, cheap or priceless things is always to undermine it. So is the case with Meher Baba in general approach.
Meher Baba was not against spreading (Prasar) of His name. He was averse to any propaganda (exaggeration), preaching His philosophy and insisting on anyone of other faith to come to Baba. He directed us to live the life of love and so other may follow us. He also said you can bring my name to others. It is My responsibility to reach their hearts from their ears.
In Baba’s words
Your work is to tell the people who Baba is and also clarify that Ram bhakti or bhakti to any deity is Baba’s bhakti. There should be no quarrel over Jai Ram or Jai baba. Explain that Baba is God –Fresh stock –in Human form and if they do not listen stop talking.
As Baba Lover especially as worker, one must try to spread Baba’s name among general public without any expectation of its result or effect on others. It does not necessarily need any stage or a platform. Here are few suggestions which I feel, are not in contradiction to Baba’s directives on spreading His name.
1-Tell your relatives, friends, and aquitances, the name of Avatar Meher Baba.
2-Conduct Baba functions on any occasion like birthdays and anniversaries of any member of family.
3-Conduct series of celebrations on anniversaries of Baba’s birthday, silence day, first visit and even foundation day or inauguration day of the centre.
4-Put Baba’s badge on person and carry few handbills or brochure and hand over to anyone who queries you seeing your Baba’s badge.
5-Distribute introductory pamphlets or hand bills through news paper hawkers in your residential area.
6-Distribute introductory pamphlets or hand bills to co-travelers while travelling in contract carriage of marriage or picnic party.
7-Distribute of hand bills /brochures on Meher Baba to morning and evening walkers in parks.
8-Distribute Baba’s handbills in exhibitions. Almost 5 to 10 exhibitions are held in Delhi every day. This one of the easy platform for spreading Baba’s name without expenditure needs volunteers.
9-Get your visiting card printed one side with small saying of Baba or at least name of Avatar Meher Baba. Don’t leave word Avatar Meher Baba.
10-Put sticker of Baba’s name in front or back or both side your car, motorcycle and bicycle.
11-Display Baba name and photo on invitation cards anniversary of birthday, marriage and condolence ceremonies.
12-Stick wall posters at strategic locations in the city.
13-Announcement of meeting on loud speaker in local area before function/gathering.
14-Baba lovers having shop or commercial establishment can keep the handbills/brochures at the counter and pass on to customers /visitors
15-Arrange public function in your locality or any other common place preferably in an open area. A conference hall or auditorium is not necessary. These arrangements in indoor halls and serving food to Baba lovers or visitors restrict common man to even to take look on Baba’s photo compared to program conducted in open area or in a tent. Our focus should be to reach to masses who are not aware of name of Meher Baba.
16-Take out procession in local area before conducting program.
17-Donate important books in the libraries reading centres like “God Speaks”, “Discourses” or “Questions Answers” on Baba.
18-Place advertisement in local news papers.
19-Documentary relay on radio channels.
20-Documentary video on TV media which is most effective method of reaching common man.
All these approach may be made on individual basis or as part of Center’s activities, of course on the basis of availably of funds. One must keep in mind the Baba’s directives in this matter; “In case you find that money is the hindrance in carrying Baba’s work better drop My work. A single penny collected in My name, misappropriated may cause million of rebirths.”
ACTIVITIES OF AMB PRASAR KENDRA
|1||An exclusive website in English on Avatar Meher Baba was launched with web id. www.ambprasarkendra.com on 31st January-2016 (it contains exhaustive messages and information)|
|2||Compilation of "Divine Sense of Humour of Avatar Meher Baba Volume-1(204 episodes) released in December 2013|
|3||Compilation of "Divine Sense of Humour of Avatar Meher Baba Volume-2 (258 episodes) released in June 2014|
|4||Compilation of "Lessons for spiritual Aspirants" (81 topics) in January 2015|
|5||Compilation of "Semblance Episodes" (50 episodes of Baba compared with mythological episodes) released in August, 2016|
|6||Compilation of "Articles" (87 articles on different topics based on Baba's discourses) released in November, 2016|
|7||Introductory Pocket book on Avatar Meher Baba in English titled "Avatar" (16 pages)|
|8||Introductory Pocket book on Avatar Meher Baba in Hindi titled "Yugavatar" (48 pages)|