Baba arrived at Meherabad the following morning, February 22nd, at eight o’clock. After going to his room and meeting with the mandali, he entered the main pandal at 8:40 A.M. amidst the usual acclamations of praise, and greeted the sahavas group with a sweet smile on his face.
“Baba is the Soul of souls,
The Beloved of the gods,
The Life of his lovers, and
He is the slave of his dear ones.”
Baba inquired if all were present in the pandal. Though the time to be present was scheduled for 8:30 A.M., some were absent, whereupon he commented, “When I say 8:30, you should be ready by 8:00, because I may come at 7:30.” The group laughed.
Baba then asked those standing to be seated and added, “There are five days for the sahavas. You should not feel hurried or pressed. You should pass these five days laughing and remaining cheerful.”
A woman said she could not squat, because her knees would not bend. Baba remarked, “I am glad I am in good company as I, too, cannot bend my knees.”
Yogi Shuddhanand Bharati, a well-known personality of south India who had a considerable following of his own, received Baba’s embrace and sat down near Baba on the dais.
Baba then addressed the sahavas group: “I want all of you to take care of your health; otherwise, there will be no sahavas in the real sense. There will be coughing, sneezing and disturbance. When taking a bath, take precautions not to get a chill. Dry your body thoroughly before coming out of the bathroom, wear dry clothes and do not expose yourself; otherwise, you will catch the flu and also infect others.”
Eruch was interpreting Baba’s gestures in English, which Kutumb Sastri translated into Telugu and Burjor Mehta into Gujarati. Baba commented: “This sahavas will be a good opportunity for the Gujaratis to learn the Telugu language, (1) and the Andhraites to learn Gujarati. If some of you cannot follow what is going on, just look at me and I will look at you. This is sahavas. Sit silently, gazing at me. Sahavas means companionship intimate companionship.” While translating this into Gujarati, Burjor Mehta used the word dosti. Baba liked it and observed, “It is the correct word, which means friendship.”
(1) This Biography is for the most part a compilation of translations of various accounts in various languages; mainly, Marathi, Hindi, Urdu, Persian, Gujarati, English and Telugu. As the times change, transliteration practices change. The Telugu language was once spelled Telegu; now it is spelled with a “u” instead of an “e.” As an example of expunging colonial usages, the city of Bombay has had its name restored to Mumbai, and Poona has been changed to Pune (both are literal renderings of the names in Devanagri).
Lord Meher, 1st. ed., Bhau Kalchuri, Vol. 15, pp. 5319 – 5320.
The Avatar Meher Baba Perpetual Public Charitable Trust, Ahmednagar, India are the copyright holders of all of Meher Baba’s messages, discourses and photographs, unless otherwise stated.