79-SADHU CHRISTIAN LEIK
Sadhu C. Leik was dedicated Baba lover from Russia and Baba’s circle member.
Following are the narration in his own words about his biography and how he came to Meher Baba.
I left Europe with high ideals about Sadhu-hood. Swami Vivekananda's famous "Song of the Sanyasin" was so vivid in my mind. But what an awakening I had in the Himalayas, where I spent nearly a year in a modern ashram in inward solitude. How orthodox the sadhus were about external observances! The ideals of the "Song of the Sanyasin" were hardly realised in actual life.
How entirely different I found Meher Baba and Meherabad to what they had been pictured to me! The Master, a personification of the highest spirituality and love, and Meherabad so peaceful and appealing! The very atmosphere seems to be charged with spirituality and love, which literally radiate from the personality of my beloved Master. All seemed so natural and homely, all seemed to love their "Baba," as the Master is affectionately called by the devotees. And Baba, simplicity and homeliness Himself, free from that awe-inspiring solemnity attributed to the occult hierarchy. That love which I had craved for, and had been denied in my own family, I experience here more and more as the days pass by. It needed only a few days to set my mind at ease and Baba struck the keynote when He told me that He would help me to become a real Sanyasin by renouncing everything in my mind.
The first teaching I received from the Master was about the three stages of intellectual understanding; then of seeing and feeling the truth and lastly of being and becoming truth, which meant perfection. I felt that I had not reached the latter state yet. Words are of the intellect, said the Master. The help He would give me would be an entirely internal one, by His very presence in my heart. Afterwards I realized why the Avatars themselves never commit their teachings to dead paper, in dead letters, but leave this to their disciples to do.
When the Master told me that one day I would realize Him as the Divine Mother Herself, I was somewhat puzzled. Afterwards, when the Self revealed itself to the self as the Self of all, I realized the truth of it. The true meaning of another saying of the Master, viz., that He had always been with me, was always with me and would always be with me till eternity, also became self-evident to me after that revelation. Realizing later, on one of the Master's divine aspects, the truth of that saying of Shri Ramakrishna a few days before entering Maha Samadhi, viz., I am seeing through millions of eyes and hearing through millions of ears, I am speaking and eating through millions of mouths and working through millions of hands, came home to me so forcibly. The Master had told me that gradually I would realize Him completely in all His divine aspects — aspects of that real Self, the one without a second.
"What I Owe To My Master Shri Sadguru Meher Baba,"
Few of his life time incidences and his dialogues with Meher Baba are written below.
Adi Sr. and Nusserwan arrived, bringing with them a gray-haired Russian called Sadhu Christian Leik. He was the European that Baba had mentioned, and Leik was overjoyed at finding the atmosphere in Toka so congenial and uplifting, as he had been searching a long time for a guru. Vishnu accommodated him in the room previously occupied by Chhota Baba. "There is something here," Leik said. "I feel it. After 20 years of longing and worship of such departed Masters as Ramakrishna, today I have finally met and seen a living Master!"
Leik was 58 when he came to Toka. Born in the Russian province of Estonia in 1870, from childhood he had a contemplative, scholarly nature, and he became interested in Western and Eastern philosophy at an early age. As a young man, he had a lucrative position as the manager of a business firm in Moscow, but in 1902, he quit his job and traveled to England and France seeking knowledge of spirituality. During the subsequent years, he served as a naval officer and met Meredith Starr with whom he shared similar interests.
After reading about Sadguru Ramakrishna and his chief disciple Vivekananda, Leik traveled to India in 1910 and began staying in Ramakrishna monasteries.
He had been to the Himalayas, but found the atmosphere spiritually dry. After some years, however, he found himself longing to be under the guidance of a living guru. He heard that his old acquaintance, Meredith Starr, had recently gone to India and surrendered to a Master. He wrote letters to Starr and was informed of Meher Baba's ashrams at Meherabad and Toka.
The day he arrived, Baba sent for Sadhu Christian Leik. When Leik was taking the Master's darshan, Baba rested His head on Leik's back. Baba did not embrace him then, but later that night He did. Baba personally showed him around the Prem Ashram where the boys were meditating.
The following morning, Baba ordered Leik to observe silence and then instructed, "Remain here with a completely free heart. Keep silence from tomorrow. Do not worry. Whatever you may need, ask Vishnu. Don't let your mind think of things that have bothered you. Have patience. I will make you steadfast in the Path. I am pleased with you because despite so many hardships and sufferings, you have stuck to the Path for years."
Leik replied, "As for patience, I have enough of it. I know I will be given the right thing — at the right time — when I deserve it."
Baba then instructed, "As long as I do not send for you, do not come to Me. Even if I don't call you for days, don't come and don't worry. I am with you. I will speak with you internally."
"I know," said Leik, "Masters always speak internally."
Leik was a humble and unassuming person, which impressed the mandali. (For instance, he washed his own clothes, which was unusual for a European in India.) Baba too was pleased that he had come and indicated that he was a genuine seeker.
In 1928, after the move from Toka, Sadhu Christian Leik had been sent on pilgrimage to different places in India but subsequently returned to Meherabad.
At noon in the dining hall, Baba spoke admiringly of Sadhu Leik and made these remarks about him: "He is the member of the circle about whom I have been speaking often. He is a real man. There is a world of difference between Meredith Starr and Sadhu Leik. They are poles apart. Starr, however, was instrumental in bringing him here."
Baba concluded with this comment: "The real one comes; the unreal goes
On 1st April 1929, Sadhu Christian Leik left on Baba's instructions to tour India and speak about Baba to whomever he met (orders similar to those given to Rustom before he left for England). Leik described his first stop at Madras, in a letter to K. J. Dastur:
The only service I can render (to Baba) is to visit houses and have a talk with those to whom I am introduced. I have a feeling that Shri Baba wants me to go to different parts of India to establish a spiritual or inner connection with those parts, just as he sent Mr. Rustom K. Irani to England in the spring of 1928 to establish a connection with the West. Since Baba said He would be with me and I must not worry, I am gradually getting proofs of such care and this makes me grow in faith. I can see that through His inner workings He brings me in touch with those whom He wishes to help and bless.
Leik subsequently traveled to Bangalore, Mysore, other parts of India, sometimes spending two weeks at each place. He was gone for six months.
Adi reported the news that Sadhu Christian Leik had recently expired. Leik had returned from his tour of India on 16th October 1929, in an emaciated and debilitated condition and stayed at Akbar Press. He was moved to Meherabad two days later, seriously ill and extremely weak. He died at 5:15 P.M. on 29th October, and was buried at ten the next morning in the Christian cemetery in Ahmednagar (the same one where Nelmes was buried).