10-BHAU KALCHURI (Bhau)

10-BHAU KALCHURI (Bhau)

Bhau Kalchuri (January 13, 1926), born Vir Singh Kalchuri, was an Indian author, poet, trust administrator, and one of Meher Baba’s mandali (close disciples). Bhau Kalchuri was also the principle biographer of Meher Baba’s life.

Bhau Kalchuri was born one of seven children to well-to-do parents in a northern Indian village. When Bhau was ten, his father sent him to a district school for a better education, and from then on Bhau excelled in all his studies, completing master’s degrees in public administration, law, and chemistry.

At that time, Bhau had no special interest in spirituality, and in truth, did not understand what it was. Still, he was a devotional soul, and considering this and his studious tendencies, his colleagues and professors had nicknamed him Punditji. Daily he recited prayers with all his heart, but beyond that he knew nothing.

Many of his life time events and his conversation with Meher Baba are produced below:

In 1952, Two months before Baba's arrival in Nagpur, Bhau became restless and lost interest in his college studies. He went to Segaon, Mahatma Gandhi's ashram near Wardha, but was not happy there. Returning to Nagpur, he went to a Ramakrishna ashram, but there too he was disappointed. Thinking he would become a renunciant and live for the rest of his life in the Himalayas, Bhau wrote to a swami in Rishikesh, and the swami called him to Rishikesh on 9th January 1953. Bhau decided to inform his family, and relieve himself of all worldly burdens before joining the swami's ashram.

Meanwhile, Bhau had read in the newspapers that Meher Baba was to come to Nagpur. He had never heard the name so did not think it would be worthwhile to wait for him. So, on 25th December Bhau left Nagpur to meet his family, who resided 80 miles away. Clearing up matters for his wife and daughter, Bhau returned to Nagpur on the 30th. There he learned, again from the newspapers, that Baba was to give darshan in Saoner on the 31st. He was surprised, as he was under the impression that Meher Baba had come and gone. He did not know that Baba's programs had been postponed. So, because there was still some time left before he was to journey to Rishikesh, he considered taking Baba's darshan at Saoner. His sister Nira, whom he occasionally visited, lived in Saoner and was known to many people there.

Bhau decided to go for darshan the next day, taking with him his wife Rama and their seven-month-old baby daughter Sheela.

Baba left Meherazad for Saoner on 29th December 1952. Adi drove Baba in Sarosh's car; they arrived at Victoria Terminus, Bombay where Nariman, Meherjee, Jalbhai and Gadekar met them. Adi then returned to Ahmednagar as Baba was to take a train to Saoner. The other mandali joined Baba at Karanja, and all reached Saoner, 26 miles from Nagpur, the following evening. As previously instructed, Dhake had brought a select boy and also the boy's father.

For Baba's arrival, Saoner had been transformed into a festival ground. Reception festoons and buntings adorned every corner. Roads were swept and cleaned, arches constructed over them and a huge pavilion erected. Pophali Pleader and his sons, Abdul Majid Khan, Naib Tahsildar (a government officer), and many devotees from the surrounding villages of Ajangaon, Kheri, Angewada, Patkakhedi, Malegaon, Ajni and others were responsible for this marvelous metamorphosis of Saoner.

Baba stayed at the Circuit House and the mandali at the home of Bhawalkar Pleader. His daughter Basumati loved Baba dearly and in her intense devotion had stopped taking food and water. When Baba was in Amraoti, she was brought to him, and he fed her himself.

As Bhau got off the train at the Saoner station and entered the town he surveyed this wonderful scene. Instead of going to his sister's house, he, Rama and their baby went straight to the darshan pavilion.

The message "The Divine Heritage of Man" was read out and darshan started. The people sitting in the queues had to go to Baba by scooting toward him on the ground. When they got to Baba they would stand, and Baba would smile at some, kiss some, and rest His hand in blessing on the heads of others. But when Bhau's turn came and he stood in front of Him, Baba looked in another direction and put a banana in Bhau's hand as prasad, without turning His face to him. Bhau was hustled away immediately, as there was a long queue of people waiting. The crowds were so dense that no person could stand before Baba for more than a few seconds.

Baba, being infinitely mischievous, played havoc with Bhau's feelings. His heart was totally restless and it longed to speak with Baba, but Baba had not even looked at him. Bhau ate the entire banana- including the skin! It was not a banana but a spark of divine fire, and on consuming it his whole being began to burn!

Bhau had not a clue who the companions with Meher Baba were, and he began asking each, "Are you with Baba?" At last Bhau met some of the mandali, but was told that an interview with Baba was not possible. Savak Kotwal suggested him to write to Adi's office in Ahmednagar. Ranga Rao of Andhra had come to Saoner with his son and Dr. Kanakadandi Suryanarayana of Eluru. Bhau met them, and though they too were new, Ranga Rao assured Bhau he could arrange for him to get an interview with Baba. Gadekar advised Bhau to read Jean Adriel's book, Avatar, and reiterated that an interview at this time was impossible.

The darshan lasted until evening, and when it was over Baba left for the Circuit House, where no visitor was allowed. Until nightfall, Bhau circled the bungalow in an uneasy frame of mind. All ideas of proceeding to Rishikesh were fading; he felt in his heart that the One for whom he had been searching was found.

Late at night he went to his sister's home. She had been worried about him and asked what the matter was. But Bhau did not divulge the reason for his restlessness.

Bhau could not sleep that night. He was about to leave the house at 4:00 A.M., when his sister asked where he was going so early. "For a walk," he said. She wanted to accompany him and her presence prevented him from proceeding to Baba's bungalow. When they returned, Bhau's brother-in-law, Ramlal Singh Gaharwar, asked him, "Why do you look so forlorn? You look positively lost."

"I'm all right," Bhau muttered. "Nothing is the matter with me. I'm just going out for a while."

Unbeknownst to Bhau, Ramlal's father, Maharaj Singh, had attended the Meherabad meeting of November 1952 to prepare for Baba's visit. Nira Devi (Bhau's sister) and Ramlal also had Baba's darshan in Saoner in 1944, but they had never told Bhau about it. Although Bhau had seen Baba's name for the first time in the newspapers, his initial meeting with the Divine Beloved set his heart afire.

Bhau again went towards the Circuit House. Ranga Rao, his son and Dr. Kanakadandi were on their way back to Andhra, but Ranga Rao's son desperately wanted a garland from Baba before they left. Thinking this was a good excuse to have Baba's darshan, Bhau asked Ranga Rao to give him a note, requesting a garland from Baba and offered to take it to the Circuit House.

Ranga Rao wrote the note, and Bhau went with it to Baba's bungalow.

One of the local lovers was on watch outside and did not allow Bhau to enter. Instead, he took the note from him and went inside, returning shortly with a garland. Bhau got the garland, but without seeing Baba. He left, and on the way picked up and ate any loose petals from the flowers which fell on the road. He gave the garland to Ranga Rao, who said, "Baba is to come to Andhra to give darshan. You should come to Andhra for the program. I will definitely arrange an interview with Baba there."

Bhau also met Babadas, whom Baba had kept on silence. He kept telling Bhau through hand signs to open the book, Avatar, and read certain sections of it. But Babadas did not know English, and no sooner would Bhau open the book and begin reading, than Babadas would motion to turn the page and read there. Then again, before Bhau could finish the passage, Babadas would turn the page and point to another section. Bhau could not meet any of the other mandali because they were all so busy.

Twenty thousand people assembled on 1st January 1953, for another program. Thousands of villagers, from places where there were Baba centers established, had poured into Saoner during the past few days. Ragho Patel, Moti Jagan Patel and other heads of different villages had brought hundreds of people with them for the two days of mass darshan. Saoner was merged in Baba's divine light. It was like Hamirpur all over again, replete with a raging fire which swept through the district and affected every heart.

Bhau tried again to attract Baba's attention while taking darshan, but on that day also Baba did not look at him. Baba's message "The Unquenching Fire of Spiritual Longing" was given, and at the end of the program Baba stated, "Due to the loving labor of Pophali Pleader and Abdul Majid Khan, Saoner is blessed by my presence. I will be leaving for Nagpur tomorrow."

Baba also visited several families in their homes, but because the visits were private, Bhau could not attend. Qawaali singing was held at Abdul Majid Khan's home, and during it Aloba began dancing as if in a trance. He was prevailed upon to stop and was sent back to Bhawalkar Pleader's, where the mandali were staying.

At last he met Vibhuti, an early disciple who had spread Baba's message throughout India. Vibhuti informed Baba about Bhau's sincere desire, and Baba sent word that Bhau should see Him in the afternoon at Verma's bungalow. Only then did Bhau discover where Baba was staying. At long last he was about to meet his heart's only Beloved face to face.

When Bhau went to Baba's residence that afternoon, qawaali music was being sung. Baba asked him, "What do you do?"

"I am about to appear for the final examination for my master's degree," Bhau said.

"What do you want?"

"To live with you."

"Are you married or single?"

"Married."

"What is your wife's name?"

"Rama."

"Do you have any children?"

"A baby daughter named Sheela."

"Would you obey my instructions?"

"I have come with that preparedness."

Pankhraj was present and interjected, "Baba, he should know what you mean by obedience ..."

"He knows better than you!" Baba replied sharply. "He's a M.Sc. (masters of science degree)."

To Bhau, Baba continued, "If I tell you to go about naked begging, would you do it?"

"Yes."

"Leaving behind everything, would you be able to stay with me?"

"That is all I wish for."

"When is your examination?"

"In March."

"Take the exam, and then come to Me wherever I am."

Bhau wanted to join Baba that very day. But he accepted Baba's wish and asked, "Could I attend the Andhra darshan?"

"If it doesn't interfere with your exam, you may come," Baba replied.

Bhau had Baba's order and firmly decided to join Him permanently after his exams. His wife, Rama, 20, had taken Baba's darshan twice in Saoner, and had also come to Nagpur with their infant daughter Sheela. Because of her own firm conviction, she did not interfere in Bhau's decision.

In 1953,

Bhau Kalchuri passed the examination for his master's degree and, as ordered by Baba, came to Mussoorie from Nagpur. Baba asked Bhau, "Are you firm in your resolve to stay with Me?"

"I am quite firm," Bhau stated. "That is why I have come."

"I am extremely pleased with you. In the darshan programs there were innumerable fishes," He remarked to the mandali, "but only one was caught!"

The next day, Baba called Bhau and asked him, "Are you prepared, on your own responsibility, to do as I order you?"

Bhau said that he was, and Baba continued, "I might ask you to stay here, or might ask you to go from place to place, or ask you to do certain work, certain things. Will you do it willingly?"

"Yes," Bhau replied.

"I might ask you to go to Bombay or to certain places and work with the lepers on My behalf, or go preaching, or go to Badrinath (in the Himalayas) and sit there, or go begging, or go to work as a tongawala, earn money and bring it to Me.

"In short, will you do whatever I ask you to do? I might, after a few months, tell you to go stay with your family for some months; I might ask you to go into business or attend to worldly affairs. This means you will have to do anything I dictate, whether you like it or not, but do it because I ask you to do it. If done willingly, then whatever you do will be for Me; whether good or bad, you will be doing it for Me."

Baba explained that if Bhau did something according to Baba's orders, the responsibility for that action would rest with Baba: "If all my orders are obeyed 100 percent with love, you will be free.

But if you let your mind come into the picture, it will cause great confusion. The mind is so treacherous that it is impossible to obey. Obedience must be 100 percent."

Baba then related stories about Upasni Maharaj to Bhau. One story was about a man named Taramek, who lived with Maharaj at Sakori and used to look after affairs in the ashram. Maharaj's spiritual mother, Durgabai Karmarkar, was also there, but rarely would she do any work. One day she and Taramek got into an argument. Maharaj told them to leave, because both had a love for money. There was another man named Mahadev. He was a farmer who loved Maharaj very much, and he did nothing but remember Maharaj all day long. One day the question arose at the ashram about Taramek working the whole day, but Mahadev doing no work at all. Maharaj said, "Those who do nothing for years together perform the most arduous work. To do nothing for years is great tapa (penance)."

Baba added, "Jawaharlal Nehru and Churchill, who hold the keys to their nations, do a great deal of work. But Nilkanthwala Mast, who does nothing and remains lying on his cot all day, does infinitely greater work than Nehru!

"What does doing nothing mean? To eat is work, to fast is also work; to sleep is work and to remain awake is work. The remedy then is: Whatever work is entrusted to us, if done according to the wishes of the person entrusting it, we have done nothing."

Baba explained at length about desires, how they are stored in the mind and how the mind generally revolts. At the end, he remarked to Bhau, "Now you will live for Me."

Although Bhau had been called for fifteen days, after three days Baba sent him back home. Baba instructed, "Go back to Nagpur and take complete rest for one month. Thereafter, come to Dehra Dun where I will break every bone in your body!

"Don't think I am sending you back. I will keep you with Me. It is definite." Baba gave Bhau certain instructions, and he and Deshmukh left.

According to Baba's order, Bhau Kalchuri came to Dehra Dun to stay with Him permanently on 8th July 1953. Baba explained to him, "The first order I am giving you is to visit the rooms of the mandali every night and say loudly, 'You fool! Keep silence after nine o'clock!' "

Baba added, "This is only the beginning for you."

Bhau was a newcomer, the youngest of the mandali at 27, and some of the older members had been with Baba since the 1920s. Soon after sunset, Bhau became very nervous (and twice had to go to the toilet!). At last it was 9:00 P.M. and he started out on his "sadhana." He went to every room and, hesitatingly, did as Baba ordered. Nothing happened by his repeating the statement. All the men thought it was a joke and enjoyed it, though they did not know it was Baba's order. But when he came to Kaikobad's room, Bhau saw that Kaikobad was silently praying. Bhau opened the door and shouted, "You fool! Keep silence after nine o'clock!" Kaikobad turned to Bhau with a mingled look of surprise and anger, but his duty being over, Bhau hurriedly slipped away.

The next day Kaikobad told Vishnu, "This Bhau is an absolutely rude chap. Last night when I was praying in my room, he quietly opened my door, came in and said, 'You fool! Keep silence after nine o'clock!' I was, of course, already silent."

"He said the same thing to me," said Vishnu. "He is new and we should forget about it."

"He has a master's degree," Kaikobad continued, "but still is quite a fool. And he has no manners!"

The second night also Bhau repeated Baba's order, again disturbing Kaikobad in his prayer. What could Bhau do? It was his act of "prayer," and he had to do it. Kaikobad, though, again complained to Baba, who withdrew the order. Meanwhile, Bhau was assigned the duties of handling Hindi correspondence, night watch (for a few days), looking after Isa (the troublesome sweeper's son) and most importantly-attending to Nanga Mast.

Four days after Bhau's arrival in Dehra Dun, this mast of Najibabad (whom Baba had contacted in March) walked more than 62 miles to Dehra Dun. Seeing him on the road, Elcha informed Baba. He was about a mile away, and Baba sent a car to bring him. When he was brought, Baba ordered Bhau, "Serve this mast.

Attend to his wants and look after him well." Bhau had never seen a mast before and he was not quite sure what Baba saw in him. All Bhau could see was a man completely naked, with thick matted hair, covered from head to foot with years of dirt from never washing. After bathing Nanga Mast, Baba showed Bhau the room where the mast was to be kept. The mast was made to lie down on a bed, and provision for his toilet was made. He was like a majzoob, mostly unconscious of his body, though he was often seen wandering about.

After instructing Bhau, Baba returned to His bungalow. Going to His room, Bhau began his correspondence work. After a short while, Baba came back from His bungalow and went straight to the mast's room. Bhau followed and was taken aback by the scene. The mast had moved his bowels, excreting in the bed, and it was filthy. Baba looked at Bhau but did not say anything. Instead, He Himself cleaned the bed and the mast, and Bhau felt ashamed for not being more attentive.

From that day onward, Bhau dedicated himself to the care of the mast, but daily Baba would find some fault with him. The mast would pass stools four or five times a day, and each time Bhau had to clean him and wash his clothes and sheets. Baba would come abruptly to the mast's room, at any time, and would always take Bhau to task for some minor fault.

When Bhau would bring the mast his food, the mast would tell him, "You eat it, you eat it!" It took Bhau a long time to feed the mast; only with great difficulty would he be prevailed upon to eat something.

One day the mast was clean and everything in the room was absolutely spotless. Bhau thought Baba would be pleased at last. But no sooner had Baba come than the mast urinated in the bed, and Baba reproved Bhau.

Usually, the mast had a peaceful temperament, but one night he slapped Bhau soundly. Bhau was convinced the mast must be truly mad.

The next day, Baba asked Bhau, "Speak the truth; what do you think of Nanga Baba?"

Bhau replied, "I have no idea about masts, but this one seems to be quite mad."

"How did you pass your M.A. degree?" Baba asked. "Did you have to bribe someone?)

You have no sense at all. You say he is mad, but I tell you he is a mast, an advanced soul. He is not mad; you are mad!"

Bhau paid more and more attention to the mast, but the more attentive he became, the more Baba rebuked him and pointed out various small mistakes that Bhau would never have thought of. Day and night he looked after Nanga Baba. The moment the mast would urinate, Bhau would clean the bed and change the sheets. The mast would never leave the bed and use the toilet, and though Bhau did his best to induce him to use the commode in his room, he was unsuccessful.

One day something incredible happened. After all the scolding he had taken on the mast's account, Bhau resolved that this day, at least, there would be no cause for Baba to be upset. Very early in the morning he cleaned and scrubbed the mast's room. He put fresh linens on the bed and kept extra bed sheets ready in case the mast spoiled the ones on his bed. Finally everything was ready, and Bhau stood outside the door waiting for Baba to come.

Baba arrived, walked into the room, and Bhau followed. As if struck by lightning, Bhau was dazed by the sight that met his eyes! A part of the wall next to the mast's bed had collapsed. Luckily, it had fallen outward, away from the mast. The amazing thing was that the wall had been in good condition, and Bhau had been standing just outside the room, and yet had heard nothing. Very displeased, Baba asked him, "Did I give you the duty of serving Nanga Baba or killing him? Had the wall fallen inwardly, he would surely have been crushed. Have you no eyes?" Bhau was aghast and could not reply.

"Why don't you speak?" Baba demanded. "Do you want to kill My mast? Is that why you have come here?"

Bhau finally stammered, "It is beyond my understanding. How could such a strong wall have collapsed? It was all right just moments ago."

"If your intellect does not help you, why try to use it? I say he is not mad, so why do you still use your brain and think he is? Now, tell Me how the wall came down."

"I don't know. Such a solid wall could never have fallen on its own, and I didn't hear a thing. I can't understand it."

"Give up reasoning and simply do as I tell you," Baba advised.

Other incidents firmly convinced Bhau that Nanga Mast was not an ordinary man. For example, Bhau had appeared for his college exams, but the results had not yet been announced. One night the mast suddenly said to him, "You will pass." This was astonishing, as the mast seldom spoke, and if he ever did, whatever he muttered or mumbled was totally unintelligible. And Bhau had never mentioned to Nanga Baba that he had taken college exams. The very next day, true to the mast's words, a telegram arrived that Bhau had passed his exams.

Another night, Bhau was sitting by the mast when he said, "You will have a son."

Bhau's wife, Rama, was still in Nagpur with their infant daughter and was pregnant. Four months later, Bhau received a telegram that a son was born to him. Bhau had thought the mast insane, but one day when the mast spoke about the greatness of Meher Baba, Bhau's eyes were opened. After these incidents, Bhau realized that the mast was not a madman.

Baba started giving two hours of night watch duty to Bhau in Mahabaleshwar. Krishna would be on watch from 9:00 P.M. to 4:00 A.M., and Bhau from 4:00 to 6:00 A.M. At six o'clock, Rano would come for half an hour. At the time, those on duty had to sit outside Baba's room and be alert and watchful; only when Baba clapped did they enter his room. When their duty was over, they were to lock Baba's room from outside and then leave, handing the key to their replacement.

One night Krishna locked Baba's room and forgot to tell Bhau where he had put the key. Shortly, Baba clapped, and Bhau frantically searched for the key. There was a window which Bhau pushed open and looked inside. Baba gestured for him to come in but Bhau replied, "The room is locked."

Baba again signaled, indicating that he should open the door and come in at once, because Baba wanted to urinate. Bhau replied that he could not find the key, and Baba gestured that he was quite useless and that he was to sit back down. Baba himself got up and took the pan to pass urine. Due to these frantic, tense moments, Bhau was perspiring even in the winter cold.

The episode did not end here. Krishna had told Bhau that he should tell Rano that Baba wanted to be awakened between 6:30 and 7:00 A.M. When Rano came Bhau gave her the information, but she counter-questioned, "Am I to wake him at 6:30 or 7:00?"

Puzzled, Bhau hesitated then replied, "At seven."

When Baba came to the mandali's quarters at eight, He teased Bhau, "I fail to comprehend how you passed your M.A.! You have no sense at all." He then informed the others what had happened during the night, and the other men had a good laugh. (Lord Meher-p-3424-1954)

In April 1954, Bhau was sent on a three-month tour throughout the state of Madhya Pradesh in Central India to give talks on Baba and spread His name. At first, Bhau did not want to go, but Baba stated it was important work, and later, many people became devoted to Baba as a result. Nana Kher accompanied Bhau on the tour.

It was during their journey that the 78-year-old renowned saint of Maharashtra, Gadge Maharaj (who had a large following of his own devotees) came into the love orbit of Meher Baba. Bhau and Nana went to a place where a large gathering of Gadge Maharaj's devotees was being held. Bhau requested that the saint allow him to say a few words about Meher Baba. Gadge Maharaj agreed and told him to wait on the platform. The saint then proceeded to sing a kirtan about God and Lord Krishna, and it went on for several hours.

Bhau began thinking: "This old man has deceived me! He told me I could speak, but he goes on singing! ... Should we leave?" He glanced at Nana, who was also growing restless.

By now, it was midnight. The huge crowd was absorbed in the kirtan performance. Soon after midnight, Gadge Maharaj told Bhau to speak. Bhau spoke for two and a half hours, and later realized that Gadge Maharaj's songs had raised the pitch of the audience to an intense climax, thus preparing them to hear about the Avatar of the Age.

Baba's dictation of God Speaks to Eruch continued in Satara, and Eruch completed his writing work in July. Bhau, who had returned from his tour at the beginning of July, was given the duty of organizing the material into chapters, and getting the manuscript typed. A local typist was hired, who typed it, working eight hours a day. Bhau would read the material to him as he typed, so the manuscript was finished in about a week or so. )

March 21st 1955, was the Irani New Year of Jamshed-e-Navroz. On this festival, it is customary to have a sweet, cool drink made with milk called falooda. When Baba came to Rosewood, He told Bhau to go back to Grafton to bring the drink for the mandali. Bhau thought some servant would be there to carry the large pot of liquid, but as soon as he arrived, two women servants lifted the pot onto his head. It was so heavy they had trouble lifting it.

Grafton was about 600 feet from Rosewood, and in between was the house of the property manager, Sohrabji Damania. Damania knew Bhau and was friendly with him. Bhau was embarrassed by doing such menial labor, and fervently hoped he would not come across Sohrabji just then. Although his neck was bent, and his shoulders ached under the weight, he was glad that today Baba was kind, in that Sohrabji was not seen on the road. But, just as he was thinking this, Sohrabji appeared from a side lane and offered his namaskar (greeting) to Bhau. Bhau felt ashamed, but Sohrabji did not linger and went on his way. Bhau began thinking that Baba had not only made him labor much, but had also made him face this awkward situation!

He arrived at Rosewood, where Pendu and Eruch lifted the burden from his head. "Was the pot heavy?" Baba asked.

Before Bhau could reply, Eruch interposed, "It is very heavy!"

Pendu observed, "One would break his back were one to carry such a load for long."

Baba asked Bhau, "Did anyone see you on the way?"

"Only Sohrabji," Bhau lamented.

Seeing the expression on Bhau's face, the men burst out laughing, and Baba asked, "Did you feel ashamed?"

"Very much so!"

"How will you obey Me if you feel ashamed by being seen by others? You will act according to the ways of the world and not according to Me. He who has thought for Me does not care for the world! I will see to your sense of shame in Khuldabad."

Baba then ladled out a portion of the falooda into a small pot and told Bhau to take it to Sohrabji. He did so and Sohrabji asked him, "Don't you have any servants to carry such a heavy load?"

We are all servants of Baba," Bhau said. "It is our good fortune that Baba assigns us such work."

When he returned, Baba asked what Sohrabji had said, and Bhau reported it. Baba advised him, "Learn to live like a stone! People trample on it, and in the form of an idol also worship it, but is the stone affected thereby? Not in the least. Whether it is kicked, spit upon or worshiped, it remains unaffected. All of you should consciously be like the stone. You will attain the goal of life if you become like a stone."

In 1955, Baba's night watchman had to sit outside His room at Grafton and go in when Baba clapped.  One evening Bhau went to Baba's room for night watch, and as always Baba warned him: "Don't make any noise; don't make any movement; and keep awake!" Baba would repeat these same three instructions daily. After this, Baba asked Bhau to go out and take his seat. Before leaving the room, Baba's door was to be closed then Bhau sat outside on the chair.

Usually, every 20 or 30 minutes, Baba would invariably clap; but that night He did not clap for two hours. Bhau's legs grew stiff from sitting rigidly in one position and the mosquitoes were biting — but Bhau did not move at all. After two hours, Bhau heard Baba snoring loudly. Thinking that it was now his chance, he began lifting his leg very slowly, without making the slightest noise. But the instant he started to raise his leg, Baba clapped.

Bhau went in, and Baba asked, "Why did you move?"

Stunned, Bhau replied, "My legs had fallen asleep and I was trying to straighten them out."

Gesturing, Baba said, "You moved thinking I was asleep. But remember, even in sleep, My eyes roam over the entire universe. When I can see so far, can I not see you who are so near to Me? Don't ever think that because you are outside, I cannot see you! Even in sleep, I see everything, and I hear even the breathing of a stone! My sleep is conscious sleep."

Another night, the mosquitoes were particularly thick and pestering Bhau terribly. Slowly, he raised his hand to swish them away. Baba clapped just at that moment and rebuked him for moving. While on watch, one had to sit like a statue, and even check the urge to urinate. It was next to impossible to be on watch near Baba; and when, after the accident, the watchman had to sit inside Baba's room, it became even more difficult.

Clapping one night at Satara, Baba summoned Bhau inside, whereupon he made some hand signs. He raised both arms widely, and Bhau thought Baba wanted to embrace him. Overjoyed, Bhau spread his arms to receive the hug. Baba looked puzzled and asked, "What are you doing? I told you to pull the covering over Me, and here you want to sit on My chest!" Bhau suppressed his laughter, and after adjusting the blanket walked out of the room.

The next morning, Baba informed the mandali, "Last night, I was feeling cold and called this man inside to spread my blanket — and he comes to embrace me! I felt so frightened my heart was palpitating!" Baba and everyone had a hearty laugh at Bhau's mistake.

Another night when Bhau was on watch near Baba, this thought came into his mind: "You have to write books." Bhau was startled, but for several minutes kept hearing this sentence repeated over and over. At the time, Bhau could not understand its meaning, and four years would pass before Baba mentioned anything about writing books. Bhau was told only to reply to letters and compose an occasional article or speech. But later, beginning in 1959, Bhau was told to write different books, and Lord Meher is one of those Baba ordered him to write!

Soon after 11:00 P.M., Baba retired for the night. To keep watch by His side, He had organized the mandali into four pairs in one and a half hour shifts: Kishan Singh and Kumar, Nilu and Nariman, Bhau and Adi Sr., and Pendu and Meherjee. The first pair did their duty but they could not follow Baba's gestures and would often disturb Pendu to interpret them. Nariman and Nilu took over, and their hour passed smoothly. Then it was Bhau and Adi's turn, and Nariman and Nilu went to sleep just outside Baba's room. Soon Nilu began snoring. Baba asked Bhau who was making the noise.

Bhau said Nilu, and Baba told him to wake him, which Bhau did.

Nilu indignantly stammered, "What's the matter?"

Bhau said, "You were snoring so loudly, Baba told me to wake you up."

"I am awake, I was not sleeping! Someone else must have been snoring. Why have you come to me?" Bhau went back to Baba and reported what Nilu had said, and Baba laughed.

Then Nariman started snoring and by Baba's instruction, Bhau awakened him also. Nariman protested, "What? I am keeping awake the whole night. How could I be snoring? Have you gone insane?"

Thus Nariman and Nilu went back to sleep and kept snoring, and each time Bhau kept waking them up. Each time, both would claim, "No, we are not asleep. Why are you bothering us?"

Baba found the situation hilarious, but Bhau was embarrassed and at last told Adi, "Both of them are furious with me. Now you go wake them up." And Adi was confronted with the same answers.

From 19th February 1956, Baba left Jal Villa and again began staying at Grafton at Dehradun with the women mandali. Bhau, besides attending to Baba, was still looking after the "needs" of Krishnaji, who treated him like a common servant. Krishnaji occupied a room in Jal Villa, and when Baba ordered the bungalow vacated, Krishnaji ordered Bhau to carry his luggage to Rosewood. Bhau rolled up Krishnaji's bedding, put it on his head and carried Krishnaji's trunk in his hands. Walking to Rosewood, Krishnaji led the way, swinging a walking stick, and Bhau followed him like a coolie.

Nilu saw them and asked Bhau whose luggage it was. Bhau replied that it was Krishnaji's. Nilu became furious and asked, "Are you his servant?"

"Baba has ordered me to do this work," Bhau replied.

Nilu was extremely upset and went straight to Grafton, where he complained before Baba. Bhau was sent for, and Baba asked him, "Why did you carry Krishnaji's luggage on your head?"

Bhau was startled by the question and said, "It was your order, Baba!"

"Yes, it was My order but you have no sense! As long as a flower is fresh, its fragrance lingers and it is to be cherished — but when it dries up, it is thrown away! I gave Krishnaji the chance to remain like a fresh flower, but he could not. Now he is dried up, so throw him out! I will again give him another chance, and if he benefits by My love, he will be fortunate."

Much relieved, Bhau returned to Rosewood, and within minutes Krishnaji began browbeating him as to why he had not yet unrolled his bedding. "Look after it yourself!" Bhau retorted. "I have no time to attend to you."

Krishnaji reported this to Baba, who explained, "Where is the time for Bhau? He works from morning until night. Have pity on him." Krishnaji kept quiet.

Two days later, Baba ordered Krishnaji to get a haircut and shave, and he had to do it.

In Satara, Baba had asked Bhau to grow a (Fu Manchu) Chinese-style mustache, which he had done. Several times, when he went to the post office, people would look at him and laugh. Once someone asked. "Why are you growing this type of mustache? It looks uncouth."

Bhau replied, "I am going to China and I am trying to follow their ways and customs so that I may be accepted as one of them."

"But you don't look Chinese!" the man argued. "What are you going to do about that?" Bhau said, "Well, if my features aren't Chinese, at least my mustache is!"

In 1956, a strange event occurred in Satara. Baba was on His way from Grafton to Rosewood with Bhau and Aloba, when He saw a fifteen-year-old boy collecting cowdung on the road. Calling him, Baba asked, "What are you doing?"

The lad began weeping. "My family is poor," he said.

Baba instructed him, "Go home and come to Rosewood after washing." The boy left and Baba went to the mandali's quarters at Rosewood.

The boy, whose name was Ismail, came to Rosewood and Baba asked him, "Don't you go to school?" He replied he had quit school.

"If you are sent to a school, will you go?" Baba asked. "We will meet the expenses."

The boy answered, "I don't want to go to school."

Baba asked Pendu to pay the boy one rupee, and taking it, he walked home. After he had left, Baba remarked to the mandali, "The lad seems to be clever. It would be better if he goes to school."

Shortly thereafter, Ismail returned. After inquiry, he said, "I have come back to return your rupee. My mother says not to accept anything without working for it."

"There is not much work here," Baba replied, "but if you agree to study, it can be arranged."

"I told you I don't want to go to school! But if someone were to tutor me here, I will come for lessons."

Baba turned to the mandali and gestured, "Bhau, you teach him and acquire his blessings! At least learn how to do some good for others!"

Ismail chimed in, "If he teaches me, I promise to study."

So Baba gave the duty of schoolmaster to Bhau. Bhau was soon to learn how Ismail, besides being his pupil, also would become his boss!

Baba said that the boy was clever and He wanted him to study as if he were in school.  Baba had ordered Bhau to tutor him, and one day calling Bhau to Grafton, Baba observed, "Ismail is a very good boy, teach him with all your heart. He has studied up to the fourth standard; but see that he passes the matriculation exam within a year!"

This meant accelerating from a fourth grader to a high school graduate within a year! Naturally, this seemed an impossible task to Bhau, but Baba added, "Don't worry about it. I will help inwardly. Just try your best."

Going to the market, Bhau bought books for Ismail and started teaching him. Two days later, Baba told Bhau, "Ismail has no clothes; go to the bazaar and purchase expensive outfits for him, so that he remains pleased and pays attention to his studies. I am helping you so that within one year you will make him pass his matriculation."

So Bhau bought fine clothes for Ismail, and a few days after this, Baba commented, "Ismail's parents are very poor and he does not eat good food at home. When he doesn't have proper nourishment, how do you expect him to apply his intellect? If you want him to pass the matriculation exam in a year, then first provide good food for him."

"How am I to arrange food for him?" Bhau asked.

"How much help I am giving you!" Baba said. "I am telling you to do all this, so that you may enable him to pass the exam in a year. Just approach his parents and pay them every month whatever they spend on cooking food for him. Don't worry about money, I will provide everything needed."

Visiting Ismail's parents, Bhau made arrangements with them to provide good meals, milk, fruits and sweets for the boy, and Baba was pleased. But he further ordered, "Just do one thing more. Go to Ismail's house every morning and bring him to Rosewood for studying, and accompany him back home when he is through. If he falls into bad company, cold water will be thrown on his studies! And if that happens, you won't be able to make him pass.

Remember that."

Daily, Bhau began fetching Ismail and escorting him back to his house in the evenings. Again, after several days passed, Baba reprimanded, "You are not taking proper care of Ismail. It is so hot, and you are bringing him unprotected in this heat! If his health suffers, his studies will be ruined, and you won't be able to help him pass his exam in one year — and that would be disobeying me! Bring him to Rosewood shielded by an umbrella, so that he won't be affected by the sun. What help I am giving you! Do you ever think about it?"

Therefore, Bhau had to begin holding an umbrella over Ismail's head, while the neighbors were wondering why so much honor and respect was being showered on a poor boy who used to collect cowdung! At first, Ismail was studying well, but the more he was pampered, the more careless he became toward his studies — and the more he began arrogantly troubling Bhau.

Several days later, Baba instructed Bhau, "Bring Ismail to Grafton every day. He needs some refreshments to maintain his health and he will also be more attentive to his studies!" So Bhau would take the boy to Grafton, with the umbrella over his head, and Baba would make him sit on the sofa in front of him, while Bhau remained standing. Such was the teacher's condition: the pupil was sitting comfortably on the sofa, and the teacher had to stand before him. Goher would bring a tray full of eatables and a glass of sherbet, and Bhau would offer them to Ismail. And when the boy finished, Bhau had to wash his plate and glass.

This heaping of indulgences on Ismail made a dent in Bhau's forbearance. The room in which Bhau was tutoring him contained a bed, and Ismail would lie down on it. When Bhau would tell him to read, he would say, "Just wait a minute. I am tired, let me rest. I will read afterwards." At times, relaxing against some pillows, he would stretch out his legs, and when Bhau would ask him to be attentive to his studies, he would reply, "You read, I will listen. It is your duty to teach me; continue lecturing for two hours."

The result of all this was that Ismail would not learn anything. Even after hours of persuasion, he would say, "What is there in your teaching?

If Baba's nazar is there, I will learn everything in a second!" Baba would go on praising Ismail and castigating Bhau. This happened almost daily. But Ismail did do one good thing for Bhau. Once he told Baba, "I don't like Bhau's mustache. He accompanies me from my home every day, and people laugh at him!" So Baba immediately ordered Bhau to shave off his Chinese mustache, and that was just fine with Bhau.

Dealing with Ismail was a long lesson in tolerance for Bhau. Had he not been so mischievous, how else would Bhau have the chance to control his temper and learn to keep quiet? Baba had arranged matters with this end in mind, and Ismail played his part to perfection. Occasionally, he would taunt Bhau with such words: "You'd better learn how to teach better! You don't know how to do it. How far have you yourself studied?"

Or, at times, he would say, "Your pulse is in my hands! If I mention one word of complaint to Baba, you will find yourself in an awful plight!"

Thus, during the stay at Satara, Bhau found himself saddled with this "worthy" pupil.

After returning from England, America and Australia, Baba resumed his seclusion work in Satara. He stayed at Grafton with the women, but worked at Judge's Bungalow with Kaikobad. The men mandali at Rosewood were under orders not to speak to any woman. One day Baba sent Bhau to the town market to buy brooms, which were usually sold only by women. Bhau looked for but failed to find any brooms being sold by a man. As he was wondering whether to buy some or not, a woman stepped away from her stall or shop leaving her son in charge. Bhau immediately went to him and bought five brooms. He was about to hand over the money when the mother returned. Throwing the money on the ground, Bhau hurried off with the brooms, thus avoiding speaking to the woman. The woman looked at him, shaking her head at his peculiar behavior.

Bhau also had the duty of bringing flour from a nearby mill. One day Aloba complained to Baba that the flour from the mill was not of good quality. Baba told Bhau, "What Aloba says is true. Go to another mill to have the flour ground." Aloba showed him another flour mill two miles away. Bhau had to walk there carrying the heavy sack of wheat on his shoulders.

There was not the least difference between the flour ground in the two mills, and Bhau soon brought this fact to Baba's attention. Baba said, "What? There is as much difference between them as between the earth and the sky! It is my wish that you get the flour ground from this new mill. So why do you insist there is no difference? Why consider the flour? Have regard for my wish."

Baba looked serious and asked, "I must send him an important telegram. How can it be sent?"From the time Krishna Nair joined Baba during the early 1940s in Bangalore, he had been doing night watch by Baba's side. But from Satara, Baba had sent him back to his home in Kerala.

 One day in March 1957, when Bhau went to Baba for his watch, Baba asked, "Do you know Krishna's address?"

Bhau replied, "No, but I have heard he is in Bombay."

Bhau replied, "Sorabji Siganporia (the secretary of the Bombay Center) may be aware of Krishna's whereabouts. If a telegram is sent to him, he will inform Krishna."

Baba then dictated this telegram: "Don't worry. I am with you. I will never abandon you. Love, Baba."

He instructed Bhau to send it at once. Coming out of Baba's room, Bhau learned that the boy who daily carried messages and mail to Ahmednagar had already left for town. Bhau returned to Baba and informed him. Baba was extremely distraught and gestured, "If he has left, then another boy should have been sent. How can I trust you now? You are useless! You don't understand the significance of my work. I said at once, and I meant at once!"

The fact was that the other servant boys were under Kaka Baria's reign, and Kaka was the type of man who was so strict in his manner with the other mandali that they dared not even talk with these boys.

Baba tore the paper that the telegram was written on into pieces and continued to reproach Bhau. The barrage of rebukes lasted in one form or another until 5:00 P.M., when He dictated another telegram for Krishna: "You are dear to Me. Have courage. Everything will be all right."

Bhau was ordered to send it immediately with another boy. So Bhau asked Kaka to tell another boy to take the telegram to town. "The other boy has gone to bring milk," Kaka snapped. "Do you expect me to take the telegram? Why didn't you send it with the errand boy this morning?"

Bhau returned to Baba and reported that the telegram remained unsent. This further upset him, and for two hours he ranted and raved at Bhau, who had to listen to Baba's tirade of choice abuses. Evening Baba asked for sherbet, which Bhau handed Him in a glass. After taking two sips, he handed the glass to Bhau and motioned to him to drink the rest. Baba's mood suddenly changed. He became jovial, chitchatting and joking.

Baba's strange behavior that evening perplexed Bhau, and when he returned to his room, he made a note of the date and time. The mystery was cleared up a few weeks later when Baba visited the Saint Mira High School in Poona to give darshan. Krishna Nair attended the function, and Bhau spoke with him. Without telling him why he was inquiring, Bhau learned that on the same day Baba had caused such a storm in Meherazad, Krishna, out of desperation, had gone up a mountain to commit suicide.

In 1957, once, Baba asked Bhau to bring Gustadji a plate, and then instructed him to go to his room and write what Baba said was a very urgent letter. Just as Bhau was about to start writing, Baba clapped for him. Pointing to a few crumbs on the floor that had fallen from Gustadji's plate, Baba gestured, "Clean this up or ants will come here." Bhau did as he was instructed. "Now go, go!" Baba gestured. "Finish that letter; it is urgent and most important."

Bhau returned to his room, but hardly had he finished two lines when Baba clapped again. "Gustadji wants a glass of water," he told Bhau. "Bring it for him."

The other mandali were seated in the hall, unoccupied, but Baba had called Bhau away from his work to perform this task. "That old man [Gustadji] is doing this on purpose to harass me," Bhau thought. Nevertheless, once again he did as he was told.

Baba then motioned, "Finish that letter! Hurry! You must complete it before the boy leaves with the mail for Ahmednagar."

Again, Bhau went to his room. But five minutes later, Baba called him to clean more crumbs from under Gustadji's plate. Then he asked, "Have you finished that letter?"

Bhau was so irritated by this time that he blurted out, "How could I finish it, Baba? You keep calling me every two minutes — and Gustadji is just sitting here doing nothing but causing trouble!"

Baba replied, "Is he doing nothing? He is doing much more important work than you! The work Gustadji does by sitting by My side here is such that you can never do it even while working your utmost for Me. The reason is that he sees to My pleasure. You are obeying Me that is true. I asked you to write the letter, and you are complying, but your obedience does not give Me pleasure. He is doing this purposefully because he knows that it pleases Me. Gustadji's obedience gives Me pleasure. He knows what I want and he does it in order to please Me.

"It is My pleasure that he should eat sweets, which he does. It is My wish that he should want something or other from you, which he does. While pleasing Me, he has never had a thought that you are disturbed in your work. If he did that, then he would be keeping your pleasure, not Mine.

From the time Krishna Nair joined Baba during the early 1940's in Bangalore, he had been doing night watch by Baba's side. But from Satara, Baba had sent him back to his home in Kerala.

 One day in March 1957, when Bhau went to Baba for his watch, Baba asked, "Do you know Krishna's address?"

Bhau replied, "No, but I have heard he is in Bombay."

Baba looked serious and asked, "I must send him an important telegram. How can it be sent?"

Bhau replied, "Sorabji Siganporia (the secretary of the Bombay Center) may be aware of Krishna's whereabouts. If a telegram is sent to him, he will inform Krishna."

Baba then dictated this telegram: "Don't worry. I am with you. I will never abandon you. Love, Baba."

He instructed Bhau to send it at once. Coming out of Baba's room, Bhau learned that the boy who daily carried messages and mail to Ahmednagar had already left for town. Bhau returned to Baba and informed him. Baba was extremely distraught and gestured, "If he has left, then another boy should have been sent. How can I trust you now? You are useless! You don't understand the significance of my work. I said at once, and I meant at once!"

The fact was that the other servant boys were under Kaka Baria's reign, and Kaka was the type of man who was so strict in his manner with the other mandali that they dared not even talk with these boys.

Baba tore the paper that the telegram was written on into pieces and continued to reproach Bhau. The barrage of rebukes lasted in one form or another until 5:00 P.M., when He dictated another telegram for Krishna: "You are dear to Me. Have courage. Everything will be all right."

Bhau was ordered to send it immediately with another boy. So Bhau asked Kaka to tell another boy to take the telegram to town. "The other boy has gone to bring milk," Kaka snapped. "Do you expect me to take the telegram? Why didn't you send it with the errand boy this morning?"

Bhau returned to Baba and reported that the telegram remained unsent. This further upset him, and for two hours he ranted and raved at Bhau, who had to listen to Baba's tirade of choice abuses. Evening Baba asked for sherbet, which Bhau handed Him in a glass. After taking two sips, he handed the glass to Bhau and motioned to him to drink the rest. Baba's mood suddenly changed. He became jovial, chitchatting and joking.

Baba's strange behavior that evening perplexed Bhau, and when he returned to his room, he made a note of the date and time. The mystery was cleared up a few weeks later when Baba visited the Saint Mira High School in Poona to give darshan. Krishna Nair attended the function, and Bhau spoke with him. Without telling him why he was inquiring, Bhau learned that on the same day Baba had caused such a storm in Meherazad, Krishna, out of desperation, had gone up a mountain to commit suicide.

In 1957, once, Baba asked Bhau to bring Gustadji a plate, and then instructed him to go to his room and write what Baba said was a very urgent letter. Just as Bhau was about to start writing, Baba clapped for him. Pointing to a few crumbs on the floor that had fallen from Gustadji's plate, Baba gestured, "Clean this up or ants will come here." Bhau did as he was instructed. "Now go, go!" Baba gestured. "Finish that letter; it is urgent and most important."

Bhau returned to his room, but hardly had he finished two lines when Baba clapped again. "Gustadji wants a glass of water," he told Bhau. "Bring it for him."

The other mandali were seated in the hall, unoccupied, but Baba had called Bhau away from his work to perform this task. "That old man [Gustadji] is doing this on purpose to harass me," Bhau thought. Nevertheless, once again he did as he was told.

Baba then motioned, "Finish that letter! Hurry! You must complete it before the boy leaves with the mail for Ahmednagar."

Again, Bhau went to his room. But five minutes later, Baba called him to clean more crumbs from under Gustadji's plate. Then he asked, "Have you finished that letter?"

Bhau was so irritated by this time that he blurted out, "How could I finish it, Baba? You keep calling me every two minutes — and Gustadji is just sitting here doing nothing but causing trouble!"

Baba replied, "Is he doing nothing? He is doing much more important work than you! The work Gustadji does by sitting by My side here is such that you can never do it even while working your utmost for Me. The reason is that he sees to My pleasure. You are obeying Me that is true. I asked you to write the letter, and you are complying, but your obedience does not give Me pleasure. He is doing this purposefully because he knows that it pleases Me. Gustadji's obedience gives Me pleasure. He knows what I want and he does it in order to please Me.

"It is My pleasure that he should eat sweets, which he does. It is My wish that he should want something or other from you, which he does. While pleasing Me, he has never had a thought that you are disturbed in your work. If he did that, then he would be keeping your pleasure, not Mine.

"So, he is doing much more important work than you. Both of you are obeying Me 100 percent, but the difference is that his obedience is giving Me pleasure, yours is notHe knows what pleases Me, but you don't! You know he is doing all this to please Me. Yet, without having any thought for My pleasure, you on the contrary become angry with him. And you think that you are working while Gustadji is doing nothing, but sitting here and eating sweets. He really works! Whatever work you do is useless. If I do not give any sweets to Gustadji and send them to you with him, he would do it willingly without thinking any other thoughts. This is called work!

"The mast never left before, how is it he wandered off today?"

"It is truly surprising," Bhau said. "I looked for him on the road in all directions, but could not find him anywhere. I do not know where he was or how he happened to be coming back."

Baba replied, "You did not pay proper attention to My warnings, and that is why he left. Let this be a lesson to you."

In 1956, one day a mast-like man named Rambhau was brought to Satara from Poona by Baidul. He was not a full-fledged mast, but was somewhat spiritually intoxicated, having a "whiff" of the Path.  Bhau was ordered to care for him — to serve him food, make his bed and generally see to all his requirements. In addition, Baba ordered Bhau to wash and lay his head on Rambhau's feet seven times each day.

On one occasion, Baba instructed Bhau, "Today, I will cut Rambhau's hair and bathe him, so have everything ready by 1:30 P.M." Baba warned him three or four times to keep the mast ready and added, "I will cut his hair at exactly 1:30. Be alert and see that Rambhau does not leave the bungalow then."

Rambhau would never go outside; he would always remain seated docilely in one place. Bhau made the necessary arrangements and kept Rambhau ready. But, while he was in the bathroom, Rambhau slipped out of his room and, for the first time, walked off.

Exactly at 1:30 P.M., Baba arrived at Rosewood from Grafton. Bhau left the bathroom and went to Rambhau's room to fetch him. He was stunned to find the room vacant. Bhau had left him alone for only five minutes, never thinking he would behave like this. Terribly distraught, Bhau searched throughout the bungalow compound but could not find him. Baba sent for him and asked, "Didn't I tell you to bring the mast? What were you doing? I am waiting here for you ... Where is he?"

Bhau faltered, "The mast has gone somewhere."

Baba was furious and scolded Bhau, "I warned you repeatedly to be attentive, be very attentive. Still, you did not listen to me. How careless you are! How can I trust you?

You have spoiled my work."

He then ordered, "Find Rambhau and bring him within half an hour or else you will have to pack your things and leave!"

Bhau rode a bicycle and searched up and down the roads, but he could not find Rambhau. Frightened and dejected, he returned empty-handed. Baba was still fuming. Baba sent him out again with Pendu in the car, but they could not locate the mast.

Rambhau had disappeared. Bhau stood guiltily before Baba, feeling the ground slipping out from under his feet. At last, Baba ordered him, "Now, go out on foot. Find the mast and come back with him within five minutes. Otherwise, you will not be allowed to remain here."

Bhau left and saw Rambhau walking on the road back to the bungalow! Bhau felt a profound relief at seeing him. He took him to Baba immediately, who asked, "Where did you find him?"

"On the road."

"The mast never left before, how is it he wandered off today?"

"It is truly surprising," Bhau said. "I looked for him on the road in all directions, but could not find him anywhere. I do not know where he was or how he happened to be coming back."

Baba replied, "You did not pay proper attention to My warnings, and that is why he left. Let this be a lesson to you."

It was later learned that Rambhau had hidden himself in a public urinal, and when Baba had sent Bhau out again to search for him, Rambhau had just stepped back onto the road.

Once,

Baba reached Ashiana He told Bhau, "Despite whatever I may tell you, eat your meals to the fullest." Bhau did not completely understand what Baba meant, but he said he would. He was only eating one meal a day, as he had to be on watch near Baba from early in the evening until midnight. Eruch, too, would eat only once a day.

The first night, Baba remarked, "Plenty of good food will be available at Ashiana during our stay, so drink only one cup of tea in the morning (at Rupamai's) and then come here to eat." At midnight, Bhau had to trudge almost a mile and a half to Rupamai's, and then return to Ashiana by seven o'clock in the morning.

The next afternoon, when everyone was seated for lunch, Baba sat next to Bhau and asked, "How much are you eating? Your plate is overflowing! Are you a giant? If you eat all this, what will be left for the others?"

Addressing the mandali he continued, "Look how much Bhau eats! What kind of manners does he have?" Baba went on belittling Bhau in front of the others until lunch was over, and Bhau felt very upset about it. Baba's taunts about Bhau's gargantuan appetite became a daily ritual at lunchtime, so Bhau began taking only one slice of bread. Twenty days passed like this, but Baba did not let up for a single day, teasing and harassing Bhau whenever he sat down for lunch. Each day, Baba would come and sit next to him, and unleash a string of comments and criticisms about him and his appetite.

As lunchtime would approach each day, Bhau began to feel nervous, and would while away some time by pretending to have to go to the toilet, coming back to the table only long enough to consume his solitary piece of bread. But Baba would not leave him alone.

Finally, one day Bhau got exasperated. He said to Baba, "From tomorrow, I will not come for food. Give me only eight annas [50 paisa] a day and I will make my own [food] arrangements outside. For the past three weeks, I have been living on one piece of bread, and still you do not leave me alone and keep taunting me that I eat like a giant!"

Baba replied, "What a fool you are! The very first day, I told you that despite what I say, you should have your fill. Isn't that so? But you disobeyed me. You broke my order. And every day, when you were breaking my order by not eating, you were breaking my heart! How hurt I felt when you would not eat well."

Bhau realized his mistake and started eating regularly. Baba continued to taunt him, but was pleased that Bhau now ate in spite of it.

The story does not end here. Six months later, when Baba was again staying at Ganeshkhind in Poona, several Bombay and Poona lovers were called. At lunch, everyone sat down to eat and Baba also took a chair opposite Bhau. In the presence of all, he asked Bhau, "How is it that you eat like a giant? If you do so, others will go hungry!" Bhau acted as if he did not hear him and continued eating, whereupon, Baba commented, "See how shameless this fellow is! I tell him he takes too much food, yet he goes on stuffing his mouth. This is the height of brazenness."

Those present glared at Bhau, but in obedience to Baba, he kept on eating. Baba kept criticizing him, and Sorabji Siganporia looked at Bhau, puzzled by his actions. What could Bhau say? The fact was that by eating once a day, his intake was comparatively less than the others.

Baba left after the meal was over, and the guests asked Bhau, "You are one of the mandali; how can you disobey Baba?"

"I was very hungry," Bhau replied.

"But it was Baba's wish that you should not eat. Would it have killed you to miss one meal? When you cannot do such a small thing, how can you serve Baba properly?"

Laughing, Bhau replied, "I serve only my stomach, and despite how it appears, it really is not against Baba's wish."

In the evening when he went to Baba, Baba embraced him and said, "Today, I am very happy with you.

Baba's night watchman had to sit outside his room at Grafton and go in when Baba clapped.  One evening Bhau went to Baba's room for night watch, and as always Baba warned him: "Don't make any noise; don't make any movement; and keep awake!" Baba would repeat these same three instructions daily. After this, Baba asked Bhau to go out and take his seat. Before leaving the room, Baba's door was to be closed, and then Bhau sat outside on the chair.

Usually, every 20 or 30 minutes, Baba would invariably clap; but that night he did not clap for two hours. Bhau's legs grew stiff from sitting rigidly in one position and the mosquitoes were biting — but Bhau did not move at all. After two hours, Bhau heard Baba snoring loudly. Thinking that it was now his chance, he began lifting his leg very slowly, without making the slightest noise. But the instant he started to raise his leg, Baba clapped.

Bhau went in, and Baba asked, "Why did you move?"

Stunned, Bhau replied, "My legs had fallen asleep and I was trying to straighten them out."

Gesturing, Baba said, "You moved thinking I was asleep. But remember, even in sleep, My eyes roam over the entire universe. When I can see so far, can I not see you who are so near to me? Don't ever think that because you are outside, I cannot see you! Even in sleep, I see everything, and I hear even the breathing of a stone! My sleep is conscious sleep."

Another night, the mosquitoes were particularly thick and pestering Bhau terribly. Slowly, he raised his hand to swish them away. Baba clapped just at that moment and rebuked him for moving. While on watch, one had to sit like a statue, and even check the urge to urinate. It was next to impossible to be on watch near Baba; and when, after the accident, the watchman had to sit inside Baba's room, it became even more difficult.

Once Bhau quietly sat on the chair in Baba's bedroom, but after a while he felt a tickle in his throat and wanted to cough. Suppressing it, he covered his mouth with both hands, but the harder he tried to subdue it, the more forcefully the urge came. So he took his handkerchief from his pocket and stuffed it in his mouth. It did not help and finally the sound "ummh, umh, uumh," came from his throat.

Baba opened his eyes and acted upset, indicating that Bhau had disturbed his rest. He lambasted Bhau severely. But as soon as he began scolding him, Bhau's chest constricted and in a fit of coughing the handkerchief was spit out of his mouth. Baba taunted him, "Have you come to serve me, or to harass me? I repeatedly told you not to make the slightest sound, but you disturbed my sleep, and now I will not be able to rest the whole night."

Baba went on rebuking him every half hour and then, calling Goher, he complained about Bhau to her. The matter did not end there. Baba sent for Mehera, Mani, Meheru, Naja and Rano, and told Bhau to leave the room and stand outside by the door. This was something new, because whenever Baba spoke with the women, he would always send the watchman far away. This time he had purposely kept Bhau nearby so that Bhau could listen to everything going on inside the room.

"Then why did you make that noise?" "What can I say, Baba? I was about to die!" A look of absolute innocence came over Baba's face. With loving concern he asked what had happened, and Bhau told him how he was trying not to cough but was about to choke. Really?" Baba asked, "Why didn't you tell me this before?" "You didn't ask me and gave me no chance to explain."

"Still you should have told Me," Baba insisted. "Don't you know? You put on this whole show on purpose!" Bhau declared. Baba touched his Adam's apple and gestured, "I swear I did not know anything about it." While swearing, Baba looked most innocent, and Bhau's anger was swept away and he laughed. Baba embraced Bhau and caressed his face. Then Baba added, "Because I love you so much, I harass you so much. This harassment is my prasad for you."

Another incident on night watch taught Bhau an equally valuable lesson

We are all servants of Baba," Bhau said. "It is our good fortune that Baba assigns us such work."

Clapping one night at Satara, Baba summoned Bhau inside, whereupon He made some hand signs. He raised both arms widely, and Bhau thought Baba wanted to embrace him. Overjoyed, Bhau spread his arms to receive the hug. Baba looked puzzled and asked, "What are you doing? I told you to pull the covering over me, and here you want to sit on my chest!" Bhau suppressed his laughter, and after adjusting the blanket walked out of the room.

The next morning, Baba informed the mandali, "Last night, I was feeling cold and called this man inside to spread my blanket — and he comes to embrace me! I felt so frightened my heart was palpitating!" Baba and everyone had a hearty laugh at Bhau's mistake.

In 1956, after returning from England, America and Australia, Baba resumed his seclusion work in Satara. He stayed at Grafton with the women, but worked at Judge's Bungalow with Kaikobad. The men mandali at Rosewood were under orders not to speak to any woman. One day Baba sent Bhau to the town market to buy brooms, which were usually sold only by women. Bhau looked for but failed to find any brooms being sold by a man. As he was wondering whether to buy some or not, a woman stepped away from her stall or shop leaving her son in charge. Bhau immediately went to him and bought five brooms. He was about to hand over the money when the mother returned. Throwing the money on the ground, Bhau hurried off with the brooms, thus avoiding speaking to the woman. The woman looked at him, shaking her head at his peculiar behavior.

In second incident, Baba sent Bhau to post office to send a cable. Bhau was under strict order of Baba not to speak to women. At post office counter one lady asked for pen. Bhau gave his pen to her. Coming back to Meherabad Bhau did not take back the pen from the lady afraid of speaking her by mistake though the lady kept calling to return pen.

So Bhau began to write. He would write in the daytime, and Baba would come to his room and ask him to read aloud a few pages. Baba had given the title as Divya Leela (Divine Game). As it was being read, although it was not very good, Baba would gesture, "Wonderful! Wonderful!"

Once Bhau thought however cruel a man may be, He can't possibly be crueler than Him! Baba knows that I have this trouble, and yet, He is doing this deliberately to cause me more pain. Even an ordinary man would have taken pity on me, but He, being God, has no such consideration."

At that moment, Baba clapped, and asked, "What are you thinking?" "Nothing," Bhau said.

Baba scolded him, "Are you obliging Me by doing this? On the contrary, I am obliging you by giving you this opportunity to serve Me. You frighten easily. This is nothing! Even if I were to cut you into pieces, you should bear it without a word of complaint. Not even a whimper should escape your lips. "This is love. This is service. My real mercy lies in making mincemeat out of you! "This is nothing, not even the beginning!" he continued, "And even then, you complain. You think: 'What service I am rendering!'

"What is there in your service? It has not even begun, I tell you. Were you really to serve me, there would not be any thought of self. How will you serve me when you are having thoughts about your small trouble? You are serving your affliction, not me! This is not my cruelty, but my kindness."

Baba's words convinced Bhau of the meaning of real service, and he could only regret his misplaced thoughts. Baba then sat up and gave Bhau a painkiller tablet. The next day he instructed Goher to give Bhau an anesthetic injection in mandali hall. The procedure was repeated four or five times, every week.

Besides night watch, one day, Baba asked Bhau to write a play and explained its theme. Baba titled it Prem Mahima (The Glory of Love). He gave certain points to be included which Bhau expanded upon. The play was finished while Baba was still at Guruprasad and was read out to him. Baba composed two ghazals to be included in it and these were sent to Rustom Kaka, who was told to begin the meeting at the Ahmednagar Center with the songs.

Once Bhau was with Baba during night watch, Baba would ask about the letters received. One day Bhau answered, "All of the letters seek just one thing — your darshan, and you do not give it!"

Explaining, Baba replied, "My work is different. It is not My work to travel continuously and hold darshan programs simply to allow people to bow down at My feet. It is not my work to give long discourses, to perform miracles, or to attract crowds to Me. I do not come for this. I come for all; I come to awaken all!

"Never before in any age have I given as much darshan to people as I have given during this advent. And still you and others complain! My darshan is something quite distinct."

He continued to explain, "You have no idea what I am really doing. The more you stretch a bow, the greater the distance the arrow will fly and the harder it will hit the target. I am in seclusion now, yes, but I am drawing back my bow farther and farther so that when I release the arrow of my love, it will strike deep and wound the hearts of all. The wounds will make them have My darshan continuously. They will have that longing for Me, and that is My real darshan."

Baba concluded, "I am working in seclusion to give the world my darshan. It is this darshan that will have meaning for those who love and know Me."

In 1969, Baba went on giving him instructions. When He got the jolts, He would stop and lie quiet for a few moments; then He began again. Watching see the Beloved suffering so was the most painful sight of Bhau's life.

Baba instructed: "Write 800 pages. Write in a simple and engaging way. Make it interesting. Make it instructive. Use four types of meters. Include the lives of the five Perfect Masters at the beginning, and also my father's life.

"Save 100 pages for My manifestation. I will give you the meters and also tell you about My manifestation later.

Don't worry. I will explain everything to you."

Bhau listened and did not interrupt. To ask Baba anything at such a crucial moment would only have added to his suffering. Besides, Bhau thought, he would ask Baba for clarification when Baba improved.

It took nearly one hour for Baba to convey what he wished Bhau to write, and in the end Baba added, referring to Bhau's writing in Hindi, "Always remember that I like your writing very much. Even if the world finds fault with it, you should not mind. I tell you honestly, remember it, I like your writing very much. And when I like it, what more do you want?"

In 1958, Bhau came into the pandal and introducing him. Baba complimented him, “He is a hard-working and sincere worker. He is with Mein Meherazad and does many various duties. He works year round and is now in Meherabad to help management.

Baba spent the first 40 days of His seclusion in strenuous activity. Bhau would do night watch.

Bhau was required to be with Baba from 6:30 P.M. to 6:30 A.M.; and he was not allowed to leave the room even once to urinate or any other purpose. He had to remain with Baba behind closed doors for the full twelve hours. In addition, during the day Bhau had other duties; so during this particular seclusion period of Baba's, Bhau too had practically no sleep. Yet, the marvelous thing was that Bhau would not feel sleepy or in the least tired after keeping awake the whole night.

In morning, Baba would come to the hall to be with the mandali, and if Bhau happened to be in the toilet, Baba would send Pukar to call him. While he was using the toilet, Pukar would deliver this message from Baba: "Baba has come to the hall, but you need not hurry. Take your time." After three minutes, Baba would send someone else with the same message. Bhau would then hurry up, wash and run to Baba. On one occasion, Baba asked, "Did you finish so soon? Didn't I tell you to take your own time?"

"You were sending the same message repeatedly," Bhau replied, "and therefore I came."

Baba gestured, "I did not mean that you should hurry. Now remember, take your time."

The next day, when Bhau was in the toilet, Baba sent the message three separate times and Bhau took his time. After finishing, when he came into the hall, Baba scolded him, "I was waiting for you, and you made me wait a long time! I had some urgent work for you."

Bhau said, "Yesterday you told me to take My time."

Baba replied, "I asked you to take your own time, but you should take your time according to My wish. Honestly, I had some urgent work for you to do today, but now I have forgotten what it was."

Occasionally, Baba would come to mandali hall at 9:00 A.M. when all, including Bhau, had to be up and ready. This was Baba's way: "Take your time, don't hurry — but come soon! Don't rush, but come immediately!" That too while one was on the toilet!

One day Baba came to the hall in morning. He asked whether Bhau was up yet. Bhau was still sleeping and Baba was informed. He gestured to the other men, "Do not make any noise; otherwise, Bhau will wake up.

He keeps watch near Mme the whole night and he should not be disturbed." Everyone kept quiet and Baba also sat quietly for some time.

After fifteen minutes, Bhau woke up and came out of his room. Baba called him and asked, "Why did you wake up? Were you disturbed?" Bhau told him that he wasn't. Baba then remarked, "Do you know, I was on watch and did not allow anyone to make noise. You keep watch near Me, so I kept watch near you today." (Lord Meher-p- 4457-1958)

As mentioned, during this period of Baba's seclusion, Bhau was keeping watch by Baba all night, and also had various daytime duties to attend to. Even when he tried to get some sleep for a few hours, the loud repetitions the other mandali were ordered to do would disturb him. When he would go for his tea at 9:00 A.M., he would get that which had been made at six o'clock. It was kept aside for him in a mug, and he had to drink it cold. After tea he would sit in the hall before Baba, and when Baba left, Bhau would go to His room to do correspondence or writing work. He could not have his lunch on time at eleven with the other men, because the errand boy from Ahmednagar would leave Meherazad at 4:00 P.M., by which hour he had to have all the outgoing mail ready. After completing his work, he would go for his meal. Baidul was the cook then, and after serving everyone he would keep Bhau's rice and dal aside on an uncovered plate over which, as time went by, flies would hover and land. Such was the food he had to eat.

Once He asked Baidul to at least keep the food covered to avoid the flies landing on it, to which Baidul replied angrily, "This is your reward for not being on time for lunch! You should be regular, and that's why I don't cover your food." Bhau said he could not help being late, as he had to finish work given to him by Baba. Baidul retorted, "For lack of time, would you also stop answering calls of nature? To take food is necessary. I don't accept what you say. I do my duty by cooking and serving food at 11:00 A.M. I have not been given the duty of keeping food aside for anyone." Such were the conditions under which the resident mandali had to pass their days — and it was exactly as Baba wished. This is how the Master, though loving all inwardly, was often ruthless outwardly.

Bhau's eye problems persisted. Dadi Kerawala was present one day and suggested he apply mustard oil essence which was reputed to be beneficial. Baba told Dadi to procure it (from Bangalore). When it arrived, Baba himself applied it to Bhau's eyes the first time and then told Bhau to apply it every day. It burned so badly that tears would pour forth from Bhau's eyes. He would have to leave the hall, and people would observe his tears and whisper among themselves, thinking Baba was giving him an overwhelming experience of love. This went on for a few days, until Baba stopped him from applying it.

The mustard oil did not help. Bhau was on watch one night, his eyes still terribly painful, when at 1:00 A.M., Baba inquired, "Do your eyes hurt?"

"The pain is too much, Baba!"

Baba sent for the women, ordering Bhau to stand outside the door. He complained to the women, "Bhau is troubling Me a lot; he does not allow Me to rest. (Lord Meher-p-4480-1959)

He keeps complaining about the little pain in his eyes. He does nothing but harass me!"

Goher said, "His eyes really do hurt, Baba."

"So? What can I do about it? Is he supposed to think of my comfort or his? It is his duty to see that I am comfortable."

Baba added, "I am fed up with him! I am so disgusted that I want to send him away. These days he gives me a lot of trouble. Despite my ill health, I meet people all day long. I feel exhausted. Now, at night, he tortures me!"

Mani said, "Baba, don't send Bhau away. Give him another chance to serve you."

"What service will he do? He will kill me! He only thinks of himself." Bhau was listening to every word. Baba sent the women away.

He called Bhau inside and asked if he still had pain in his eyes. Bhau, quite upset, replied, "No!" But Baba gave him some eye drops with his own hands. Bhau said, "It is not necessary."

"Why not?"

"Before the women just now, you prescribed some very good medicine!"

"You fool! You have no idea the worth of this medicine. It is priceless and only good luck can obtain it. I have love for you, and because of that, I give it to you. But you don't value my love. You should think that whatever Baba does is for the best. This medicine is being given to you to give you this understanding."

Baba embraced Bhau, and Bhau calmed down. The next day, Baba sent him to a doctor in Poona and arranged for his treatment. But despite the best care, he had no relief. One day, however, after he stopped the treatment, the pain suddenly left him.

In 1959, on another occasion, Bhau's body and head ached all over with fever. His eyes were inflamed, and his mouth and throat were dry. He was wondering how he would be able to do night watch by Baba's side that night. When he went for his duty, Baba informed him, "My health is very bad today. My head feels as if it is going to burst open from the pain, and my whole body aches. I have a temperature, my mouth is dry and my eyes are burning. Be attentive tonight and press my feet."

Baba had precisely listed all Bhau's symptoms. So what was there to tell him?

Bhau quietly continued to massage Baba's feet. After some time Bhau's fever lessened and by midnight he felt quite well.

Once Baba was sitting in Guruprasad with the mandali. Also present were a few lovers from the Poona Center. Bal Natu had delivered a speech on Baba at the center, which all were praising. Baba commented, "Bal Natu is a gem, and see these two (pointing to Vishnu and Bhau), they are coal!"

Those who did night watch near Baba encountered many difficulties while doing their duty. The watchman had to press Baba's legs, which in the summer heat was exhausting. That too, at a constant pressure. If one massaged Baba a bit harder, he would ask, "Are you angry with Me?" If done too softly, He would say, "Are you sleepy?" When not attending to Him, the watchman had to remain absolutely still like a statue. The slightest noise disturbed Baba's rest. It is hard to imagine that even the swallowing of saliva would be enough sound to disturb Baba. To keep watch by Baba's side at night was therefore among the hardest duties of all.

One time when Bhau was keeping watch near Baba, he was wearing a pair of thin pajamas. Baba was lying down snoring. He had reminded Bhau not to make any noise, and so Bhau was sitting quietly.

Suddenly, he saw that Baba's mosquito net was not closed properly, and if it was left as it was, mosquitoes might enter it and bite him. Slowly Bhau stood up, very careful not to make any noise, and he began taking a step toward Baba's bed.

Baba got up and asked, "Why did you move?"

Bhau said, "I did not make any noise, Baba."

He replied, "I heard the rustling of your pajamas." Bhau had a look of amazement on His face.

Seeing his expression, Baba lost His temper. He scolded Bhau harshly and motioned with a disgusted look, "Go back to your home. You can no longer stay with Me. I don't want to see your face ever again."

Bhau pleaded, "Baba, trains are running nearby, buses, cars and trucks are running on the roads. They are making a lot of noise! Occasionally there are even loudspeakers blaring music outside. You do not complain about that noise, but you complain about the fluttering of my pajamas."

Baba sternly asked him, "Tell Me whether I have chosen the trains, buses, trucks and cars to serve Me, or have I chosen you for this purpose? Whom have I chosen? I have concern with you because I allow you to serve me. What concern do I have with trains, trucks or anyone else?"

Bhau realized his mistake and felt touched by Baba's concern for him and for the privilege he had been given by being allowed to be near Him.

Once Baba was sitting with the mandali and brought up the subject of the play he had asked Soman to write in Marathi when Baba was at Guruprasad. Interrupting the discussion, Meherdas exclaimed, "Baba, there should be a play in Hindi also."

Baba agreed, "Yes, I want someone to write it in Hindi, but who will do it?" Remaining quiet for a few moments, he then addressed Bhau, "Why don't you write it?"

I don't know anything about plays," Bhau protested. "I am not a writer."

Baba replied, "This is not my order, but try."

Bhau felt relieved, as Baba had said it was not his order; but in the evening, when he went to Baba's room for night watch, Baba asked, "How many pages did you write?"

Surprised, Bhau replied, "Not a single one."

"Why not?"

"It was not your order, Baba."

"Yes, it was not My order — but I said to try? That was My order."

So Bhau began to write. He would write in the daytime, and Baba would come to His room and ask him to read aloud a few pages. Baba had given the title as Divya Leela (Divine Game). As it was being read, although it was not very good, Baba would gesture, "Wonderful! Wonderful!"

During night watch at this time, two incidents occurred. Bhau's health too had deteriorated. He was having terrible anal-fistula trouble and could not sit for long periods. There was constant throbbing pain and discharges of pus.

One night, the moment he entered Baba's room, Baba asked him to massage his legs. Bhau sat on a stool by the bed, and Baba lay close to the side. Bhau began massaging Baba, even though the pressure on Bhau's fistula was great. Gradually, Baba would shift to the other side of the bed, and Bhau had to continue pressing. The further away Baba moved the more pressure and pain Bhau felt.

When Baba was completely on the other side of the bed, Bhau picked up his stool and moved to the other side. Baba did not like it and gradually He would move back across the bed. Again, Bhau took the stool to the first side. Finally, Baba positioned himself in the middle of the bed, and Bhau had to bend over and massage his body for a long time, causing the rectal pain to be felt more intensely.

Baba did not let up. He would often remind Bhau, "Use more pressure. Do it harder. Are you sleeping? Don't you have any energy today? Didn't you have supper?"

Thus it went on for four hours, with Baba adding fuel to the fire, and Bhau continuing to massage His legs. Not once did Baba sit up.

In this state, these thoughts came into Bhau's mind: "People call Baba the Ocean of Mercy, but He is the Ocean of Cruelty!

However cruel a man may be, he can't possibly be crueler than Him! Baba knows that I have this trouble, and yet, He is doing this deliberately to cause me more pain. Even an ordinary man would have taken pity on me, but He, being God, has no such consideration."

At that moment, Baba clapped, and asked, "What are you thinking?"

"Nothing," Bhau said.

Baba scolded him, "Are you obliging Me by doing this? On the contrary, I am obliging you by giving you this opportunity to serve Me. You frighten easily. This is nothing! Even if I were to cut you into pieces, you should bear it without a word of complaint. Not even a whimper should escape your lips.

"This is love. This is service. My real mercy lies in making mincemeat out of you!

"This is nothing, not even the beginning!" he continued, "And even then, you complain. You think: 'What service I am rendering!'

"What is there in your service? It has not even begun, I tell you. Were you really to serve Me, there would not be any thought of self. How will you serve Me when you are having thoughts about your small trouble? You are serving your affliction, not Me! This is not My cruelty, but My kindness."

Baba's words convinced Bhau of the meaning of real service, and he could only regret his misplaced thoughts. Baba then sat up and gave Bhau a painkiller tablet. The next day in mandali hall Baba instructed Goher to give Bhau an anesthetic injection. The procedure was repeated four or five times, every week.

Another incident on night watch taught Bhau an equally valuable lesson. One night Baba said He felt hungry. This was not unusual, and chocolates or some other snacks to nibble on were always kept in his bedroom. Bhau brought a tin of chocolates, opened it, and put the lid on the edge of the bed next to the tin. It was dark inside the room, as there was no electricity in Meherazad at that time. The only light source (apart from the flashlight used to read Baba's gestures) came from a kerosene lantern outside a window. The curtain was closed, so Bhau went to open it. As he was opening it, Baba reached for the chocolates without looking at the tin. As He put His hand in the box, the lid was accidentally knocked off the bed and fell on Baba's shin.

Becoming furious, Baba berated Bhau, "Oh, how hard the lid landed on My foot. The pain is terrible! Have you come here to serve Me or to cause Me pain? How careless you are."

Bhau felt frightened and realized his mistake. Baba continued, "I will not be able to sleep now with so much pain. I cannot bear it!"

Baba did not take any chocolates and continued to scold Bhau for half an hour, using such choice epithets for him as: "ill-omened fellow ... madcap ... fool ... careless idiot ... stupid blockhead," ending with, "You are My enemy; you have come to kill Me!"

Baba then said, "I don't think I will be able to sleep, but I will try." He lay down to rest, but after five minutes sat up again, gesturing, "There is so much pain in My foot, I can't bear it. I can't sleep now. Why are you so careless? What sort of service are you rendering? You are really killing Me!"

Bhau felt repentant and kept quiet. Baba motioned, "I'll try again, but I don't think I'll be able to sleep," and he lay down.

But again, after five minutes Baba sat up and began complaining, "It is terrible, I tell you, terrible! My leg is aching so much, it is now unbearable. It is not possible for me to sleep!

"Have you come here to kill Me? Don't you feel bad about my suffering? Don't you at least repent for your carelessness? Is your heart made of stone? Do you do night watch only to harass Me? You are shameless!" He went on in this vein for about an hour.

Bhau felt miserable, but the lid was so thin it could not possibly have hurt much. Bhau's mind began to work. He started thinking: "Baba says He bears the infinite burden of the world and suffers infinitely. How can He feel so much pain from such a small, practically insignificant injury? Even an ordinary man would hardly have felt it. It was nothing!"

Moments later, Baba sat up again. "What do you gain by tormenting Me?" He asked. "Just answer Me. I suffer so much, and you don't feel it one iota. What a shameless man you are! Now I don't even feel like seeing your face! You have come to kill Me!"

Baba lay down, and Bhau's mind continued thinking: "If He cannot bear this much, how is he able to endure universal suffering, as He says he does?

It is all just words, mere philosophy!"

Bhau had seen Baba suffer continually. He had observed for Himself how, after the second automobile accident, even when grievously injured, not a single sound had passed from Baba's lips. Yet, the human mind is like this: It wanders here and there on the slightest pretext. Bhau forgot everything and began to question Baba's unendurable anguish.

Baba got up and gestured, "Come here, sit down."

Bhau was standing and, because he was upset, he said, "I am all right here."

"Obey me."

Bhau sat near him, and Baba explained, "Listen to what I say. What were you thinking?"

"Nothing."

"What do you take Me to be? Tell Me."

"You are my Master."

"And what are you?"

"Your slave."

"What is the duty of the slave?"

"To please the Master."

"And do you please Me? If you are My slave, it is your duty to serve Me. You should treat Me as you would a tender flower. Have you any idea what happened to this flower when the lid struck it? Its petals were crushed, not from the injury but because of your carelessness.

"Because you have accepted Me as your Master and I have accepted you as My slave, it is the duty of the Master to see that the slave does his duty properly. And because I have accepted you as My slave, I am duty-bound to see that you serve and please Me correctly.

"If the Himalayas fell on My head, what would that be to Me? Nothing. If someone threw a stone at Me, it would not have hurt as much as what happened here tonight. Why do I have this pain? Because of the carelessness of My slave. Because I have accepted you as My slave, I cannot bear the slightest carelessness on your part.

"But instead of thinking that you have displeased Me, you thought only: 'How can he bear infinite suffering?' Have you the least idea of My suffering? Your duty is to serve and please me at any cost, not to think about My infinite burden. It does not behoove you to think like this. By pondering such things, you cannot really call yourself My slave.

"So remember: Your negligence makes Me suffer much more than untold suffering, as I cannot tolerate the slightest carelessness on the part of My slave. And since you are My slave, treat Me as you would a flower."

Bhau cooled down at once, and he repented greatly for his thoughts. To make this lesson penetrate his heart, Baba had spent four hours over this matter. It was a lesson Bhau would never forget. The Avatar's mercy is unimaginable. He is Mercy Personified, and He dispenses only that.

Bhau had never written devotional songs in his life (he had studied chemistry, agriculture and law in college), and his abilities in these literary pursuits were all due to Baba's encouragement, inspiration and inner help.

In 1960, one day, however, when Baba asked him to write something else, Bhau protested, "Baba, I am neither a writer nor a poet. I don't know the use of language properly. Why do you give me such work? There are many good writers and poets in India, and if they come to you they would write sublime things."

Baba considered this for a moment and then asked, "Do you know any of these writers and poets?"

"Yes, I have heard of them," Bhau said. "They are very popular in India."

"All right," Baba acquiesced. "Write to them about Me, and if they are interested, I may call them."

Bhau wrote to several well-known poets and writers, and Baba appeared anxious to bring them in his contact. Bhau thought that they would definitely come, because Baba was showing so much interest in them. After a few days, polite letters were received from a few of them. They were read out to Baba and He felt happy to hear them, but He did not give any instructions to be conveyed to them, which disappointed Bhau. Bhau wrote to them on his own and sent them some of Baba's messages.

Again, he informed Baba, "Some of these famous persons will definitely come to you, and if they come they will write sublimely about you."

Baba asked, "Have you got any of their writings?" Bhau said he had a few copies of some of them. Baba asked him to bring them and read them out to him. After he did so, Baba commented, "What is there in these writings? It is most dry! Only the language is good, nothing else. Is there any flow of love? Tell Me the truth, isn't it just words? Never write to them again. They will not come to Me."

He then said, "Do you think I ask you to write in vain? Have you got any idea about your writings? There is a flow of love in it. It flows and flows. Remember that I like your writings. What more do you want?" Bhau kept quiet and continued writing when Baba requested.

Bhau's anal fistula had become severe. Baba dropped him off at Booth Hospital in Ahmednagar where he was to have surgery two days later. Don attended the operation and looked after him, assisted by Sidhu. Baba also visited the Satha family at Akbar Press at 8:15 A.M. on the 6th, and again at 8:30 A.M. on the 15th, when He also visited Bhau in his room at Booth Hospital.

In another event, Bhau was keeping watch in Baba's room as usual. A taxicab suddenly pulled up outside. Hearing it, Baba sent Bhau to find out who had come. From it stepped Dr. R. P. Asthana, the principal of Nagpur College where Bhau had gone to school. But neither recognized the other until they introduced themselves. Asthana asked, "Kalchuri, what are you doing here?"

"I am a night watchman," Bhau said.

Surprised, Principal Asthana declared, "A night watchman? What do you mean?" Bhau just smiled and inquired where he was staying. Asthana said, "I am staying at the Agha Khan's bungalow," which was a grand residence.

Bhau asked him to be seated and went to inform Baba, who said, "Tell him to come tomorrow morning at eight o'clock. But since he was your principal, send him to the Agha Khan's bungalow in our car. He will feel pleased that his former student takes such good care of him. Instruct the driver to come back immediately after dropping him there."

Bhau went and told Principal Asthana, who protested, "No, no, that is not necessary.

Bhau would keep watch until midnight, and afterwards. During these days, Bhau felt as if a thunderstorm were bursting over his head. Baba showed His aversion to him and would not allow him to come near Him. At night, Bhau would be on watch, and during the day he would remain in His room writing. He was working on Hindi ghazals at the time (later titled Meher Geet Sudha (Songs of Meher's Wine), but Baba was totally indifferent toward his efforts. Bhau felt as if Baba's days were numbered and His life was coming to an end. All the mandali felt similarly.

Becoming indifferent to all, Baba made them interested in His disinterestedness. The more passive He was, the more attentive they were to Him. On account of His indifferent attitude, the mandali were more determined and cautious than ever in following His behests to avoid the least cause of annoyance to Him.

In 1965, because of the impending sahavas, the mandali's work was increasing. Moreover, due to Baba's constant scoldings, Bhau felt terribly harassed. At night, he was to be on duty by Baba, but even during the daytime he had to be present most of the time in Baba's room. As a result, Bhau had no time in which to do either correspondence or the writing of speeches. Baba was sending Sarosh, Viloo and Chhagan to Uttar Pradesh and other places, to participate in important public functions, and one of Bhau's assignments was to write their various speeches in Hindi.

One day Baba gave Bhau some urgent work to do, but, because he was with Baba in His room the entire day, there was simply no time to finish it. When Baba asked if Bhau had done the work, he replied, "No, I did not have time."

Baba scolded him and later that night, as he was pressing Baba's legs, Bhau was so distressed he thought: "It would be better if I die. I cannot leave Baba because I know I could never be happy without him, but I cannot serve him, either. I don't do anything right, and he gets annoyed with me. It is best I die!"

While Bhau was thinking these thoughts, suddenly Baba sat up and gestured to him, "Show Me how you will walk when you are 70."

Bhau blurted out, "But I don't want to live to be 70! I want to die!"

"But just show Me how you will walk."

So Bhau had to walk back and forth across the bedroom hunched over like an old man.

Baba made him go from one corner to another about four times. After the third time, Bhau began laughing and his depression lifted. Baba remarked, "You still have lots of work to do. You have no idea about it now.”

In another incident in his room at Meherazad that afternoon at about 4:00 P.M., Baba remarked to Bhau, "Today, the Ahmednagar people are going to celebrate My birthday publicly. This evening, they are having a big parade through the town. I know they have all worked very hard, and this makes Me happy. I, in turn, want them to feel pleased that the celebrations come off well. But if it rains, then everything will be spoiled! Do you think it will rain?"

Bhau said, "No, Baba, it won't rain! The sky is clear."

"But if it rains, what will happen? Sarosh will be the most upset, because he has worked day and night for the procession. Do you think it will rain? Go and look at the sky."

Bhau went outside to look and came back and repeated the same thing, "It won't rain, Baba”.The sky is very clear. There is no sign of rain. Don't worry, Baba. Just rest now."

Baba lay down and did not reply, but after five minutes he sat up again and asked Bhau to look outside to see if there were any clouds. Bhau looked and reported that there were no clouds. "This is not even the monsoon season," Bhau pointed out.

Baba continued to send him outside every fifteen minutes or so, and when he went to look at five o'clock, dark rain clouds filled the sky. Bhau hurried to tell Baba, who exclaimed, "See! I warned you! Now, what will happen?" and as soon as Baba gestured this, rain started pouring down.

Bhau was stunned. Baba gestured, "Go right now and tell Aloba to ride [on his bicycle] to the pumping station and phone Adi and ask if it is raining in Ahmednagar." Since it was pouring outside, Bhau asked Goher to bring him an umbrella, but Baba gestured impatiently, "Hurry! Go right now!" So, Bhau ran across the compound to the men's side without an umbrella, getting soaking wet. He gave Aloba the message and returned to Baba.

Baba immediately asked him, "Did you tell Aloba to bring the message to Me here after he phones Adi?"

"No, Baba. How could I tell him that? No one is allowed to come to your room unless you call them."

"Go! Go and tell him," Baba said. "I have never seen such an idiot like you!" Again, Bhau had to dash out into the rain and give Aloba the instructions to bring the news about the phone call to Baba's room. Aloba had already left, so Bhau told Meherwan to tell him when he returned.

When Bhau returned to Baba's room, he was drenched and quite irritated, thinking: "What is the hurry about phoning Adi? If it is raining in Ahmednagar, it is raining! What will Baba do about it? Here I am, soaking wet, and I have to sit with Baba until midnight in these wet clothes!"

As Bhau entered Baba's room, Baba gestured, "If there is rain in Ahmednagar, everything will be ruined!"

Bhau replied, "Whether the program there gets ruined or not, My program here is completely spoiled! I am drenched!"

Baba just smiled and gestured to him, "Come here," and taking His own handkerchief, he tenderly and lovingly began to wipe Bhau's face.

Bhau said, "I can do it."

Jim Mistry and Khorshed had been invited to Meherazad from Bombay for the birthday celebration. One afternoon in the hall, while Bhau was massaging Baba's legs with powder, Jim Mistry said, "Baba, I have brought a special bottle of oil which is very good for massaging."

Baba told him to bring it, and Jim handed it to Bhau. Because Bhau knew that Baba did not like anything greasy, he took just a little of the oil and began rubbing it into Baba's legs. Jim joked, "You miser! Why do you take so little? Use more!"

It was very warm that day, and Bhau was perspiring as he massaged Baba's leg. Jim kept teasing him to use more oil. Eventually, Baba motioned for Jim to come over and instructed, "Now, you massage one leg and Bhau will massage the other." Jim was caught in his own trickery! He was not used to such exertion, and after more than an hour, he was completely worn out. Bhau was accustomed to it, but Jim had never massaged Baba before. Afterwards, he had a good laugh at himself for the lesson Baba taught him.

During this period, an entire week passed by, during which Bhau had no opportunity to read aloud those letters forwarded to him. On the morning of the eighth day, Bhau took the considerable stack of letters with him into the hall, thinking that that day Baba would hear them and dictate suitable replies.

Baba looked at him and gestured, "Today, I have got a headache; you reply to them."

As soon as he conveyed this, a thought came into Bhau's mind: "What sort of God is He? His lovers are really great.

Baba lovers do not want anything spiritual or material from Him; they only want His darshan. And He says, 'No darshan!' Then they expect a few loving words from Him directly, and He says, 'You reply!' "

But Bhau did not say anything, and Baba also did not ask him anything. When Baba retired to His room that afternoon at three o'clock, Bhau followed Him. At one point, Baba asked, "How many letters did you write today?"

Irritated, Bhau replied, "Not a single letter, Baba!"

"Why not?"

"Where was the time? I was with you in the hall and when you came here I followed you."

"Yes, you are right. But tell Me, what were you thinking back in the hall?"

"Nothing."

"Tell Me the truth!" So Bhau repeated what had passed through his mind — about Baba's lovers being great and only wishing for His darshan. Baba replied, "Yes, you are right. My lovers are really great. But what do you mean by thinking this? You have been with Me for so many years, yet you still don't understand what I am doing for them! If they come to Me, what will they see? This physical form. This is nothing!"

Baba hit His thigh with His fist, the sign He would make for His seclusion work, and gestured, "This is the real thing I am giving them, and you will witness with your own eyes what will happen to those who have not seen Me physically. Although they have not seen Me physically — they are with Me and I am working for them. They are present here."

During these final months, Baba had also been dictating lines to Bhau to be incorporated into ghazals. On the evening of the 29th, he dictated this line in Hindi, and told Bhau to write a ghazal based on its theme: "What will we live for now, when you have gone away?"

In Meherazad one day, the men were observing silence sitting before Baba in the hall. Through hand signs and gestures, "silent conversations" took place. An amusing incident occurred the previous night. Bhau was on watch. When Baba asked him something, Bhau was unable to make himself understood. Baba was amused at His expressive finger signs and facial expressions, and for fun kept asking him one thing after another. Bhau was a total failure at hand signs and Baba asked, "What would you do if I were to keep you on silence for a long time?"Bhau wondered about the line's meaning. Soon he would understand. This was one of the last lines Baba ever gave Bhau. The hearts and minds of the mandali were focused completely on Baba, but all were helpless before His supreme will.

To mark the 38th anniversary of Baba's silence, all His devotees and lovers throughout the world observed silence from midnight of the 9th of July to midnight of 10 July 1963. Those who could not keep silence, due to unavoidable circumstances, fasted for twelve hours, from 8:00 A.M. to 8:00 P.M. on the 10th. Not even water was allowed during this twelve-hour fast.

Bhau did not know which gestures or signs he should make to respond properly.

Bhau tried his best to "say" something with his hands, and Baba enjoyed his predicament. At last, Baba remarked, "I would go mad trying to understand your signs! Are you gesturing to speak or performing some sort of charade?"

As mentioned, Baba did not like any breeze in His room when He slept. Besides all the windows, doors and ventilators being tightly shut, Baba put cotton in his ears before resting at night, at both Meherazad and Guruprasad, to block out any noise. When Baba would nibble on something during the night, He would often give Bhau a little of whatever He was eating — chocolates, cake, cookies or cheese, for example. One night He sat up and gestured, "I am hungry. Give Me something to eat." Bhau brought the chocolate tin, put it on His bed, and went to open the window. Meanwhile, while his back was turned, Baba took out the cotton from His ears. When Bhau came back to the bed, Baba handed it to him. Thinking it was a piece of chocolate; Bhau popped it into his mouth and started chewing. Seeing him do this, Baba laughed and laughed.

It was a scorching summer that year in Poona, and even at night it was hot. On one occasion, while Bhau was on night watch, he was sitting in a corner of Baba's room perspiring profusely; Baba was also perspiring as he lay on the bed. After some time, Baba sat up and asked him, "What are you thinking?"

Bhau replied, "Nothing, Baba," though he had been thinking that it was unbearably hot outside and even more so inside Baba's room. "Why does Baba wish all the doors, windows and ventilators closed as soon as he retires for the night?" Bhau wondered.

Baba looked at him and commented, "I am feeling very cold tonight."

Bhau was taken aback and immediately replied, "No, Baba, it is terribly hot in here!"  "I am telling you I am cold," Baba insisted. "It's very cold tonight!" and He repeated this several times.

Bhau argued, "Baba, it is hot. Ask anyone. I am feeling so hot and uncomfortable." Baba kept insisting how cold it was.

Finally, Baba got fed up and asked Bhau, "What do you take Me to be?"

Bhau replied, "You are God."

"You take Me to be God, and yet you do not believe what I say! If I am God, I am the Truth! The Truth can never speak a lie. Truth always speaks the truth.

"If you have this conviction, then you will feel cold, because I say it is cold! I always speak the truth."

And Bhau realized that he had been wrong to argue.

Thereafter, Baba would send the men out of the hall, except for Bhau, who was to write down Baba's dictations. From 21 July 1967, Baba began dictating material to Bhau for a new book, which Baba titled The Nothing and The Everything. Baba told him, "I am giving you ten percent of the book which I wrote in Meherabad during 1955–56... The other 90 percent is in God Speaks." (Lord Meher-p- 5279-1967)

One night during his watch, Baba asked Bhau, "Who is your best friend?"

Bhau replied, "Nana," since he had known Nana Kher since his college days in Nagpur.

"Do you feel lonely here without him?" Bhau said yes.

"Should I call him here?"

"Baba, how can you call him during your seclusion?"

"Never mind that," Baba replied.

The next day in the hall, Baba instructed Eruch to send Nana Kher a telegram, informing him to come and stay at Meherazad. Pendu and Eruch objected, but Baba did not give any further explanation.

Nana Kher arrived on the morning of 28 August, and remained for almost a month.  He would keep watch near Baba at night for three hours, and was then relieved by Aloba. It was the first time Nana had been given this duty, and it was Aloba's first time as well. (Aloba continued doing it until February 1968, at which time Baba stopped it.)

Putting His two forefingers together, Baba had told Bhau, "When Nana comes, you two do everything together. Take walks together, eat together, be with each other at all times." Bhau followed Baba's instructions and became Nana's constant companion, but after some time Bhau became fed up because he had other work to attend to and Nana was always by his side. Soon, Bhau was sorry he had ever mentioned Nana's name to Baba!

Baba also sent Chhagan to two other "Meher Melas" in Uttar Pradesh, one at Bagda and another at Khandarka, and later Baba sent him to Kanpur for Baba's birthday celebration. Each time, before Chhagan left, Baba would call him to Meherazad to read out the Hindi speeches prepared by Bhau. Chhagan would read them in the hall, before both the men and women mandali. It was a pastime for Baba, but for Bhau it was one more additional duty. He had to do night watch, the Hindi correspondence, be present with Baba in the day, write speeches for Sarosh and Amar Singh Saigal and then Chhagan, besides working on other writings.

One day in mid-November, Baba asked Bhau to write ghazals. Bhau replied, "Baba, it is not possible to write ghazals in Hindi. They can only be written in Urdu or Persian."

Baba said, "What do you take Me to be? I am Ustad (the Master)! I taught Ghani to write ghazals, and I will also teach you. But first, try."

So, Bhau tried and wrote almost 200 songs in ghazal form (which were later printed as Meher Geetika). Baba liked them, but noted, "These are songs, not ghazals. I will teach you when we're in Guruprasad next summer." Meanwhile, Baba instructed Bhau to translate Don's The Wayfarers into Hindi, and Bhau began this work.

Baba had actually paved the way for Bhau to write ghazals seven years before when he dictated two ghazals in Hindi to him in 1960, but at that time Bhau never thought Baba would ask him to compose them.

At Meherazad, Baba had instructed Bhau to translate Don's book The Wayfarers into Hindi, but as he had little or no time to do it there, once they arrived at Guruprasad he began this work. Baba did not wish him to translate the book literally, as He felt it was too matter-of-fact an account, but He wanted a complete written account filled in with more details, of His mast work. After discussing it with the mandali, however, it was decided to translate the book as it was and then to write a supplement of Baba's contacts with masts and the poor after 1948, updating the book to the last mast contacts during the 1950s and 1960s.

One day in April 1968, at 3:00 P.M. Bhau went to Baba's room as usual to keep watch near him until 8:00 P.M. Baba's room was suffocatingly hot. Stepping into it was like walking into an oven or sauna.

Every ventilator, window and door was tightly shut, as Baba had instructed. Baba sat on His bed in His underwear; His chest was bare, perspiration dripping from His forehead and arms.

Baba was in a splendid mood. As He had previously hinted in Meherazad, He informed Bhau, "Today, I will teach you how to write ghazals."

Bhau stood before Him sweating profusely and did not say a word. He had protested against writing ghazals before when the subject had first come up, and he was still working to complete the "ghazal-like" songs he had written.

Baba complimented him, "You have written with all your heart and the songs are good, but I want you to write ghazals and today I will teach you. I am going to give you one line and I want you to repeat it to the rhythm I will beat on My thighs."

So saying, Baba dictated this line in Hindi: "Now My heart is terrified even to hear the name of love."

Bhau began repeating it aloud as Baba played a rhythm with His fists, pounding His thighs like a tabla. Standing before Baba, Bhau repeated the line over and over again in Hindi. "Now my heart is terrified even to hear the name of love ... Now my heart is terrified even to hear the name of love ..." Half an hour passed, but Bhau did not understand what Baba meant.

Bhau was perspiring; Baba was also perspiring. Still Bhau had no idea what Baba was trying to make him comprehend. So he said, "Baba, I don't follow, please don't take this trouble for me. You are already burdened with seclusion work."

Not once stopping his constant rhythmic pounding, Baba only gestured, "Continue."

Bhau repeated the line again for another half hour, but he still had no notion of the poetic meter Baba was trying to convey. Again he pleaded, "Baba, it is too hot in here! Now, please stop!"

Baba again gestured, "Continue." And once again for another fifteen minutes, the sound of Baba slapping His thigh to Bhau's repetition of the same Hindi line went on.

Finding it monotonous, Bhau became more and more exasperated during this final fifteen minutes. He found it hard to concentrate because of the oppressive heat. Baba, too, was wringing with perspiration from the exertion. It had now been going on for an hour and fifteen minutes.

Bhau could not contain himself any longer and blurted out, "Baba, please stop now; I cannot follow anything!"

This time Baba looked at him in disgust and stated, "You are useless! Go sit down." And he lay back down on his bed and continued to pound his thighs with his fists, as if he were playing a tabla.

Bhau sat in the chair feeling both foolish and sorry for having failed and for having displeased Baba. Then something wonderful happened. As he was sitting in the chair, all of a sudden it was as if a breeze of understanding blew across his mind — instantly he knew what Baba wanted! He understood how to write ghazals — the meters and style.

Immediately, without saying a word, Baba sat up in His bed, and snapping His fingers said, "Compose, compose!"

Within half an hour, Bhau composed the first ghazal of what was to become the book of ghazals titled by Baba, Meher Sarod.

He read it out, and Baba was quite pleased. He embraced Bhau and assured him, "Yes, this is what I want. Now, I will continue giving you one line or so every day, and you should continue composing in this way."

Every day for two months, Baba would give Bhau one, sometimes two, sometimes many couplets from which to compose ghazals. Sometimes when Baba was in the mood, He Himself would compose the entire ghazal. At times, He would describe a story, such as about Sar Mast, Majnun & Laila, or Farhad & Shirin, or give Bhau points which He wanted him to versify.  And each day when Bhau would go to Baba in the afternoon, Baba would inquire, "How many ghazals did you write today? Read them out."

Some of the ghazals were composed in Baba's room itself. At times, Bhau would be so absorbed in his thoughts after Baba had given a line that when Baba would gesture for water, Bhau would walk over to get it, but then forget what Baba wanted. He would stand there and look at Baba, thinking of the ghazal, and Baba would laugh and gesture again to bring the water.

Baba would sometimes ask Bhau to repeat a certain line, or sometimes the entire poem. Often Baba would embrace and kiss him, and gesture, "Do you know, have you any idea what you have written? How touching it is?

You have no idea how sublime it is — how high, how deep! You have no idea what you have written! Your writing flows; it flows like a river!"

Once, Bhau was with Baba during night watch, Baba would ask about the letters received. One day Bhau answered, "All of the letters seek just one thing — your darshan, and you do not give it!"

Explaining, Baba replied, "My work is different. It is not My work to travel continuously and hold darshan programs simply to allow people to bow down at My feet. It is not My work to give long discourses, to perform miracles, or to attract crowds to Me. I do not come for this. I come for all; I come to awaken all!

"Never before in any age have I given as much darshan to people as I have given during this advent. And still you and others complain! My darshan is something quite distinct."

He continued to explain, "You have no idea what I am really doing. The more you stretch a bow, the greater the distance the arrow will fly and the harder it will hit the target. I am in seclusion now, yes, but I am drawing back My bow farther and farther so that when I release the arrow of My love, it will strike deep and wound the hearts of all. The wounds will make them have My darshan continuously. They will have that longing for Me, and that is My real darshan."

Baba concluded, "I am working in seclusion to give the world My darshan. It is this darshan that will have meaning for those who love and know Me."

Still, as His lovers went from place to place spreading His message, a greater and greater number of letters were received from people asking for darshan. Baba would hear these letters as they were read aloud in mandali hall, those in English and Gujarati by Eruch, and the Hindi ones by Bhau. Those in Persian were read by Aloba.

An entire week passed by, during which Bhau had no opportunity to read aloud those letters forwarded to him. On the morning of the eighth day, Bhau took the considerable stack of letters with him into the hall, thinking that that day Baba would hear them and dictate suitable replies.

Baba looked at him and gestured, "Today, I have got a headache; you reply to them."

As soon as he conveyed this, a thought came into Bhau's mind: "What sort of God is he? His lovers are really great.

Bhau pleaded, "Baba, don't say anything now. You are in terrible pain. Wait and tell me when you are better."January 24th was also Francis' birthday and he received an embrace from Baba. During Bhau's watch on the night of the 24th, Baba gestured to him, "Listen carefully to what I say. I am giving you very important work. I want you to write My biography in verse." As He was gesturing, Baba would get frequent sharp jolts, and Bhau's heart broke at seeing His suffering while He was straining to communicate.

But Baba went on giving him instructions. When he got the jolts, He would stop and lie quiet for a few moments; then He began again. Seeing his Beloved suffer so was the most painful sight of Bhau's life.

Baba instructed: "Write 800 pages. Write in a simple and engaging way. Make it interesting. Make it instructive. Use four types of meters. Include the lives of the five Perfect Masters at the beginning, and also My father's life.

"Save 100 pages for My manifestation. I will give you the meters and also tell you about my manifestation later. Don't worry. I will explain everything to you."

Bhau listened and did not interrupt. To ask Baba anything at such a crucial moment would only have added to His suffering. Besides, Bhau thought, he would ask Baba for clarification when Baba improved.

It took nearly one hour for Baba to convey what He wished Bhau to write, and in the end Baba added, referring to Bhau's writing in Hindi, "Always remember that I like your writing very much. Even if the world finds fault with it, you should not mind. I tell you honestly, remember it, I like your writing very much. And when I like it, what more do you want?"

This scene in Baba's room on the night of 24th January 1969, will always was before Bhau's eyes; he alone knows this story of tears. Meher Darshan (the biography in Hindi verse) and Meher Prabhu (the biography in Hindi prose) are the results of Baba's final instructions given then. As Bhau later recollected: "It was His wish that I write it, and by doing so, I have fulfilled his last orders to me."

Baba repeated this to Bhau on several occasions during these last days. While Bhau was on watch, Baba explained, "John was the youngest of Christ's disciples. Christ used to kiss and loved him dearly. Similarly, I love you. I love all, but this is My personal love."

On the afternoon of 30th January 1969, Baba did His Universal work as usual. Bhau was with him in his room, and had to beat Baba's chest with his fists as he had been instructed. After this final day of working, tears flowed down Baba's cheeks. Baba looked up at Bhau and then drew Bhau to himself and embraced him. Baba looked completely exhausted and in anguish. His body had been broken into pieces, crushed after being ground in the mill of the forces of creation's universal suffering.

On the 30th January 1969, Baba dictated four prescient lines to Bhau, which Bhau often quoted in the months after Baba dropped His body:

Sab ke sab khamosh the
Aur mae uchal ke kood gaya
Kuch nahi ke madhyam se
Sab kuch nikal ke reh gaya

(All were silent.
And I jumped up and leapt away.
From the Nothing
Everything went away.)

Later, Baba began moving His fingers to give Bhau another line for a ghazal, and was overtaken by a terrible spasm. Bhau pleaded with Him, "Baba, please do not dictate anything now. You are in too much pain. Give me when you are feeling better." And Baba stopped.

After a short while, Baba sent for Eruch and gestured, "My condition is serious."

Eruch said, "We feel that also, Baba, but we are helpless against your will."

Bhau was feeling bad that he had not been able to strike Baba's chest that afternoon as forcefully as Baba wished. To console him, Baba asked Eruch, "How do you find Bhau?"

"Bhau is matchless," Eruch replied. Baba gestured for him to leave.

Bhau Kalchuri was a relative latecomer to Meher Baba’s circle, meeting Meher Baba in 1952 and joining him permanently in 1953 at the age of 27. He served Meher Baba in various capacities including as his night watchman. Meher Baba gave Bhau several writing assignments, many of which he completed only after Meher Baba died in 1969. In 1973 Bhau became a trustee of the Avatar Meher Baba Perpetual Public Charitable Trust. Today he is its chairman and oversees all operations at the trust office in Ahmednagar and the trust mandated developments at Meherabad, India.

Kalchuri is best known for his exhaustive biography of Meher Baba, Lord Meher (also known as Meher Prabhu), a twenty volume 6,472 page chronicle based on diaries kept by Baba’s followers from as early as 1922, as well as recorded interviews. He is also author of Avatar Meher Baba Manifesting and The Nothing and The Everything, a book on spiritual mechanics based on notes given to him by Meher Baba. He has also written several plays and books of verse. Bhau writes in Hindi and English.

Bhau Kalchuri was one of the most publicly accessible figure in his life time. Kalchuri had given talks all around the world on the life and teachings of Avatar Meher Baba, and published online periodical Awakenings. Starting in 1985, he had made extensive speaking tours both inside and outside of India, predominantly the United States, but also many trips to Europe and Australia. He had been interviewed in both press and radio.

He published following English books

>Meher Prabhu: Lord Meher, the Biography of the Avatar of the Age, Meher Baba. Bhau Kalchuri, Manifestation, Inc. 1986, a 20-volume biography was published by him taken from numerous diaries and personal interviews conducted by him.

>Meher Baba’s New Life
>Avatar of the Age Meher Baba Manifesting
>While the World Slept (>The Nothing and the Everything
>Let’s Go To Meherabad)
>Mastery in Servitude
>Meher Geetika
>Meher Roshani
>Meher Sarod
>Ocean Waves, Volume I and II)
>Sun Rays

Hindi books published by him are as under.

>Divya Leela (play)
>Jai Meher (play)
>Meher Darshan
>Meher Jyoti (Flame) (songs)
>Meher Leela (biography of Meher Baba up until 1965 in verse)
>Prem Mahima (The Glory of Love) (play)
>Vishvas (Faith) (play)
>You Alone Exist (prayer)