THE MOST FORTUNATE
In late April , Baba again entered a seclusion. He was in the underground crypt and gave orders that no one was to be sent up the hill. One day, three groups of visitors unexpectedly came to Meherabad for Baba's darshan. The first group was a large number of Parsis from Bombay who had come to Ahmednagar for a few days. Since they were close to Meherabad and had heard of the "Irani Saint," they decided to visit one morning and arrived at about ten o'clock. Only a few of them sincerely wished to take Baba's darshan; the rest merely wanted to sightsee.
Just before the group arrived, a Hindu couple also came to Meherabad with the intention of having Baba's darshan. The couple and the group of Parsis were told that Baba was in seclusion and was not seeing anyone or giving darshan. On hearing this, those who had come to sightsee merely laughed cynically and decided to go back. The sincere Parsis who had come for darshan were disappointed but decided to stay, hoping Baba would come down the hill or call them up. They sat with Chanji and inquired about the Master, listening attentively to his stories. They left at about four o'clock after six hours of waiting.
Also deciding to wait, the Hindu couple sat near Baba's seat by the dhuni and began meditating. They continued meditating, waiting patiently until nine o'clock that night in vain hopes of having Baba's darshan. Finally, believing it was God's will that they not see Baba, they left with heavy hearts.
The same day, a mendicant fakir showed up at about five o'clock, expressing his desire to see Meher Baba. On being told the Master's instructions, he spoke very forcefully, saying that he would have Baba's darshan or else he would not leave. He went to the well where he washed himself in preparation for meeting with the Guru. Afterward he sat under the neem tree near the dhuni, silently repeating God's name.
According to Baba's wish, travellers and mendicants who came from long distances were always given a meal, and so the mandali requested the fakir to join them for dinner. He answered, "Without the Guru's darshan, I shall not touch food or water!" The mandali tried to persuade him not to act so stubbornly and overrule the Master's orders, but the fakir would not listen. That night, after hours of useless persuasion, he was invited to come and sleep inside with the men, but he even refused this and continued to sit by the main road.
The next morning the mandali found the fakir sleeping on the verandah of their quarters and concluded that he must have given up his foolish behaviour. But when the fakir awoke, his face with beaming and he declared, "The Guru heard my voice. My desire has been fulfilled. I had the Guru's darshan last night."
Thinking he must have seen Baba in a dream, the mandali told him that Baba often appears to his followers in their dreams and he was fortunate to have had such an experience. At this, the man jumped up, rebuking them, "What are you talking about? This was not a dream! Meher Baba came to me in person and gave me his darshan and then returned up the hill."
The mandali did not believe him, as Baba was in seclusion and never came down the hill once he retired for the night. But then one of the mandali who had been on nightwatch appeared at lower Meherabad and related how for some unexplained reason, Baba had walked down the hill during the night and then returned. The fakir was given breakfast and left happily.
Baba later explained to the mandali the events of the previous day:
The three groups that came yesterday reaped the benefits according to their capacities. Those who came to sight see carried back, unbeknown to them, the benefits of this sacred atmosphere. The Hindu couple who came with devotion and stayed to listen to stories about me gained more spiritual benefit. They reaped the fruit of their faith and devotion, though they are unaware of it.
But the one who was the most fortunate was the fakir. Due to his firm determination and intense devotion, I had to disturb my seclusion and come down the hill. There has to be such true faith and longing to have the darshan of God — to move Him and bring Him down from the mountain!
LORD MEHER, Vol. 3, pp. 1040-1041
1988 © Lawrence Reiter