EAST-WEST GATHERING -DARSHAN
EAST-WEST GATHERING -DARSHAN
In November 1962 there was another darshan of Baba's Eastern and Western followers in Poona. It was a unique event; for the first time in the history of mankind East and West met in oneness at the feet of the God-Man. Among those who had come from the West were doctors, lawyers, architects, professors, and businessmen, students, teachers, farmers, ballet dancers, actors, as well as wives and mothers and some children. The Easterners were of all castes, classes and religions and came from India, Iran, Pakistan and the Middle East. Baba addressed this large gathering as "My dear children" and said that "All religions of the world proclaim that there is but one God, the Father of all in creation. I am that Father."
One morning in 1963, a visitor from the Theosophical Society came to see Baba for the first time and asked him for a message. Baba said, "My message is love God to such an extent that you become God. That love is a gift from God. One of the means by which it can also be won is selfless service — but the selfless service should be so sublime that you should not even have a thought that you are serving!" And on yet another occasion Baba said, "God is not to be found in the skies or in the caves of the Himalayas. God is in the heart of each one. Once your heart is clean, God will shine out in it. But it is not easy to clean one's heart. It is like diving deep into a sea of fire! To love me is to lose yourself. Hence, where you are, God is not; and where God is, you are not. It is easy to become good but very difficult to become God." With tongue in cheek, one of the mandali remarked that it should be easy to become God after becoming 'good' — one just had to knock off an 'o.' Baba replied, "It is no joke to do that — even if one were to die in the attempt to knock off that 'o,' one would not succeed!"
Towards the end of the year, when news came of the assassin¬ation of U.S. President, John F. Kennedy, Baba said of him: "He was a great man, good and sincere. Dying as he did has not only made him immortal in mankind’s memory — and history, but it has given him a great push forward spiritually. However, although he was assassinated because it was ordained to be, it is not a good thing and it portends more suffering ahead for the world." In a message on his birthday, Baba said that the aim of life is to love God and the goal of life is to become one with God. The surest and quickest way to achieve this goal is to hold on to his daaman by loving him more and more. He added, "I have suffered much and will have to suffer much more till I break my silence."
Meher Baba's secretary, Adi K. Irani issued a circular to all group heads in India on April 10, 1964. The letter stated that a man in Delhi called Krishnaji was trying to contact Baba-lovers. "This man is of South India (Kerala) and was for a time with Baba in Satara. Often he had confessed to the mandali that Baba’s love and compassion had retrieved him from a life of degradation, and that he had not known what love was before he met Baba. Being by nature an exhibitionist, Krishnaji wore a robe and kept his hair long, but Baba directed him to discard such sham and had him dress in ordinary clothes. Although he lived with the mandali for a while, he could not accommodate himself to the simple life lived by Baba's men. Shortly he found that his presence in his hometown was imperative due to some unpleasant affair he had been involved in, and beloved Baba instructed him to return home for good.
"Later this Krishnaji came to Delhi and reverting to robe and long hair began to observe periodic silence and to pose as the 'Chargeman of Meher Baba.' Now he calls himself ‘Baba’, claims to be observing complete silence and is said to communicate with visitors by means of an alphabet board."
A significant instance, this, as it reveals how Baba tried to guide his lovers and followers to distinguish the false from the real, although he himself had suffered from criticism both in India and abroad. There were many who had first claimed to love him and later had vilified him if their demands were not met. Among such individuals were journalists who, without enquiring, condemned Baba and sought to criticize him. But Baba always observed that if his universal work was to succeed fully and completely, it was imperative that he be faced with opposition. In fact, often when Baba was accused he would ask his lovers not to be angry or violent. On the contrary he blessed those who had opposed him, in the same way as Jesus did when he said from the Cross, "Father, forgive them for they know not what they do."
When India's Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, died in the summer of 1964, Baba remarked, "Jawaharlal Nehru was matchless as a statesman and India will have to wait another seven hundred years to find another jewel like him; he can be said to have been a Karma Yogi. Only when I come again through my next advent on earth will there be another like Jawaharlal."
THE WILL OF GOD
In December Baba’s youngest brother, Adi S. Irani, who lives in England, visited him with his family. It is on record that on this occasion it was astonishing to witness the tremendous awareness of seven-year-old Shireen, Baba's niece.
When Baba told her that he loved her, she went over and said in his ear: "I love you even more."
Shireen asked several intelligent questions which intrigued all those around her.
"Baba, I know we are born again and again, but you are God so how is it that you get born?"
Baba replied, "Once in a while God takes birth because of his Love for His Creation. I am born in human form so that you may see me as you are, and if you are fortunate to know me and love me then some day you will see me as I really am."
Shireen shot back, "You are in all of us, then are we all in you, Baba?"
Baba nodded, "Yes, that is so."
"We are your children, then why can't we stay with you?"
Baba very lovingly replied, "If you love me, then I am with you wherever you are staying."
A very puzzled Shireen asked, "If I did not love you, Baba oh, I am not saying I don’t, because I do love you! — But just suppose I didn't, then it would not be my fault, would it Baba? It would be because you did not want me to love you?"
Baba said, "Yes, it is all my Will. My will governs the creation. You love me because I want you to love me."
Shireen then asked the last question, "You are beautiful and so merciful, then why did you create snakes and scorpions?"
"You, Shireen, are so pretty and sweet, yet when you sit on the potty you bring out what is dirty and stinking. Why do you do it? Because it is necessary - and moreover it keeps you well and pretty. And so are all things in God's creation necessary. Both good and bad are mine."
In May 1965 Baba held a mass darshan in Poona where thou¬sands came for his sahavas. His message this time had a different note: "All these years I used to embrace you, my lovers, and bow down to your love for me. Now I cannot embrace you, so I allow you to bow down to my Love for you." During this sahavas Baba told his lovers that on the occasion of their being with him he did not wish to give them a lot of words to exercise their minds because he wanted their minds to sleep so that their hearts might awaken to his love. "You have had enough of words, I have had enough of words. It is not through words that I give what I have to give. In the silence of your perfect sur-render, my love which is always silent can flow to you - to be yours always to keep and to share with those who seek me. When the Word of my Love breaks out of its silence and speaks in your hearts, telling you who I really am, you will know that that is the Real Word you have been always longing to hear."
After the week-long darshan program, Baba gave me personal interviews for three days. Baba enthusiastically approved the launch of a magazine devoted to him. I would be the Editor and the title was THE GLOW [later GLOW INTERNATIONAL]. Baba called this magazine "my child" and asked me to nurture it with love and care. The first issue of THE GLOW appeared in February 1966 — with a message from Meher Baba: "I am the Sun which is hidden by the shadow of yourself. Cease thinking that you are your shadow, and you will find that the Sun, which I am is your own Reality." Another message in the same issue: "Be composed in the Reality of my Love for all confusion and despair is your own shadow which will vanish when I speak the Word." The magazine is still in print and distributed from Hamilton, New Jersey, USA. In 2016 Meher Baba lovers gathered in New Jersey to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of GLOW INTERNATIONAL.
The sahavas for the Westerners scheduled in 1965 was cancelled by Baba because "the world situation is very bad, and growing worse daily. The pressure of my universal work is affecting my health tremendously and the pain in my neck is beyond limit. It is the universal Cross that I bear...." He added, "Sometime, somewhere, somehow, I will meet my old and new Western lovers before I break my silence." All of Baba's Western lovers were informed of the cancellation of the sahavas, except one young American, Robert Dreyfuss, who had set out from Boston in September 1965 and had hitch-hiked his way to India, to be on time for Baba’s darshan. He reached Meherazad three months later only to be told by the mandali that the sahavas had been cancelled. Baba did not allow the American boy to return disheartened. On the contrary Baba received him and asked him to return to America and persuade the youth of his country to give up drugs. Baba said, "Tell those that are, that if drugs could make one realize God, then God is not worthy of being God. No drugs. Many people in India smoke hashish and ganja - they see colors and forms and lights and it makes them elated. But this elation is only temporary, it is a false experience. It gives only an experience of illusion, and serves to take one farther away from Reality.
"Tell those who indulge in these drugs (LSD, etc. ) that it is harmful physically, mentally and spiritually, and that they should stop the taking of these drugs. Your duty is to tell them, regardless of whether they accept what you say or if they ridicule or humiliate you, to boldly and bravely face these things. Leave the results to me; I will help you in my work. You are to bring my message to those ensnared in the drugnet of illusion, that they should abstain, that the drugs will bring more harm than good."
Later in reply to Richard Alpert, later known as Ram Das, a leading exponent of drug ingestion, Baba said, "No drug, whatever its great promise, can help one to attain the spiritual Goal. There is no short cut to the Goal except through the grace of the Perfect Master; and drugs, LSD more than others, give only a semblance of 'spiritual experience,' a glimpse of false reality." From time to time Meher Baba continued to clarify doubts and misgivings on the subject of drugs while his anti-drug followers spoke to audiences, gave radio and television interviews and set up drug guidance centers.
Dr. Allan Cohen, who started work with the leader of the psychedelic movement, Timothy Leary, was later disillusioned with drugs and dedicated himself to the dissemination of Meher Baba's messages of 'No Drugs.' Seeking clarification relating to the LSD controversy raging in the U.S., Dr. Cohen posed several questions to Meher Baba.
Baba from his seclusion answered:
.The user of LSD drug could never reach Subtle consciousness in this incarnation despite its repeated use, unless the person surrendered to a Perfect Master. To experience real spiritual consciousness, surrenderance to a Perfect Master is necessary.
.The experiences gained through LSD are, in some cases, experiences of the shadows of the subtle plane in the gross world. These experiences have nothing at all to do with spiritual advancement.
.Repeated use of LSD leads to insanity which may prove incurable in mental cases, even with LSD treatment.
.Medical use of LSD helps to cure in some cases mental disorders and madness.
.There is no such thing as areas in the brain reserved for subtle consciousness, and the question of LSD affecting them has no meaning.
.When LSD is used for genuine medical purposes, in controlled doses, under the supervision of specialists, there are no chances of brain, liver or kidney being damaged.
.Continued LSD use for non-medical purposes results in madness and death eventually.