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Articles

CCCs
  – Billy Goodrum

Amartithi
  – Bruce Felknor

"You'll find Me in the garden"
  – Jenny Keating

'Heart Tires of Its Gaudy Dress' – Francis Brabazon
  – Buck Busfield

HOLLYWOOD
  – Billy Goodrum

Trust and Intimacy
  – Jenny Keating

Living with Baba
  – Bruce Felknor

When Words Fail . . . Just Use More Words
  – Buck Busfield

Suffering and Service
  – Juniper Lesnik

SPOILER ALERT
  – Billy Goodrum

The charm of His ways. . .
  – Jenny Keating

The Importance of Being Furnished
  – Bruce Felknor

It's Been Fun
  – Steve Klein

Let’s Talk about Love
  – Juniper Lesnik

Cannes
  – Billy Goodrum

In the world but not of it . . .
  – Jenny Keating

Give Me Your Imperfections
  – Wendy Connor

Children of the One God
  – Bruce Felknor

As the Poet Says
  – Steve Klein

Happy Endings
  – Jenny Keating

Thoughts on Furniture
  – Billy Goodrum

Going Home
  – Juniper Lesnik

A Tale of Two Connections
  – Bruce Felknor

The Flowering Seed
  – Wendy Connor

Baby Steps
  – Steve Klein

Patience
  – Jenny Keating

Hold On!
  – Juniper Lesnik

Waiting for the New Humanity
  – Billy Goodrum

Remembering
  – Bruce Felknor

The Beloved's Beloved
  – Wendy Connor

Compare and Contrast
  – Steve Klein

It's in the struggle . . .
  – Jenny Keating

Time
  – Juniper Lesnik

The Tipping Point
  – Billy Goodrum

Learning Poise
  – Bruce Felknor

When "Good Enough" Isn't
  – Steve Klein

Conflict and Joy
  – Jenny Keating

Sleepless in San Jose
  – Juniper Lesnik

Vacation Incarnation
  – Steve Klein

Nerve Endings of the Soul
  – Jenny Keating

"Let the World Wait"
  – Wendy Connor

Religion vs Spirituality
  – Steve Klein

The Bigger Challenge
  – Wendy Connor

Que Sera Sera
  – Steve Klein

To Be Honest
  – Juniper Lesnik

Praise and Blame
  – Steve Klein

Being Right
  – Steve Klein

To Love God is To Love Our Fellow Beings
  – Juniper Lesnik

God is Alive in the World
  – Wendy Connor

Determined to Be His
  – Steve Klein

The Stuff We're Made Of
  – Juniper Lesnik

"I Will Always Be With You": Memories of the East West Gathering
  – Wendy Connor

Half Full or Half Empty?
  – Steve Klein

Love The One You're With
  – Steve Klein

Ordinary Life
  – Juniper Lesnik

Baba Loved Us Too
  – Wendy Connor

Feeling His Love
  – Steve Klein

He is both Father and Mother
  – Juniper Lesnik

A Leap of Faith
  – Wendy Connor

Becoming His
  – Steve Klein

Don't Worry, Be Happy
  – Juniper Lesnik

A Life Worth Living
  – Wendy Connor

Love The One You're With
  – Steve Klein

What a Mighty Beloved our Beloved is
  – Wendy Connor

To thine own self be true?
  – Steve Klein

The Sweets of His Love
  – Wendy Connor

Sickness and Health
  – Juniper Lesnik

Giving Advice
  – Steve Klein

"Garlic-Faced"
  – Wendy Connor

To Love and Be Loved
  – Juniper Lesnik

Talking About The Truth
  – Steve Klein

The Script was Written Long Ago
  – Wendy Connor

Excuse Me, Which Way to God?
  – Steve Klein

Letting Go
  – Juniper Lesnik

The Mosquitoes are Bad Today
  – Wendy Connor

What If A Teaching Moment Never Comes?
  – Steve Klein

Beads On One String
  – Juniper Lesnik

Youth Sahavas '07
  – Wendy Connor

Stop, You're Both Right!
  – Steve Klein

God, Please Give me a Job
  – Juniper Lesnik

"It Just Passes More Quickly"
  – Wendy Connor

Multiple Meher Babas
  – Steve Klein

Winking Back
  – Juniper Lesnik

The Treasure Within
  – Wendy Connor

Holding On, But Losing One's Grip
  – Steve Klein

1969
  – Ann Conlon

Obedience
  – Ann Conlon

Meher Center – The Way It Was
  – Ann Conlon

Armageddon, Anyone?
  – Ann Conlon

What Does Baba Want Me to Do?
  – Ann Conlon

Baba's 'Things'
  – Ann Conlon

What Does THAT Mean?
  – Ann Conlon

The Way It Was – Meherabad
  – Ann Conlon

Broken Heads
  – Ann Conlon

Doing "Baba Work"
  – Ann Conlon

On Being Ill
  – Ann Conlon

Enid
  – Ann Conlon

To Each His Own
  – Ann Conlon

Meherjee
  – Ann Conlon

Youth Sahavas
  – Ann Conlon

Kitty
  – Ann Conlon

The Lonely Path
  – Ann Conlon

Isn't He Enough?
  – Ann Conlon

He Said What?
  – Ann Conlon

Goher
  – Ann Conlon

Taking a Dare
  – Ann Conlon

Seeking Suffering
  – Ann Conlon

Dreams
  – Ann Conlon

Amartithi
  – Ann Conlon

Margaret
  – Ann Conlon

"The Disciple"
  – Ann Conlon

I Wonder ...
  – Ann Conlon

Backbiting, etc.
  – Ann Conlon

Hearing His Name
  – Ann Conlon

Rites, Rituals and Ceremonies
  – Ann Conlon

"Baba's Group"
  – Ann Conlon

His Promise
  – Ann Conlon

Then and Now
  – Ann Conlon

Middlemen Revisited
  – Ann Conlon

Padri
  – Ann Conlon

Gateway Days
  – Ann Conlon

The New Life
  – Ann Conlon

Books, Books and More Books
  – Ann Conlon

Elizabeth Patterson
  – Ann Conlon

His "Last Warning"
  – Ann Conlon

Detachment
  – Ann Conlon

Is That A Religion Coming?
  – Ann Conlon

Manifestation: Did He Or Didn't He?
  – Ann Conlon

A Country of Our Own?
  – Ann Conlon

Remembering Mohammed
  – Ann Conlon

Advice (Sort-Of) for Newcomers
  – Ann Conlon

You're a Baba Lover If...
  – Ann Conlon

Real Happiness
  – Ann Conlon

Baba Lover, Baba Follower or Both?
  – Ann Conlon

Meherazad – The Way It Was
  – Ann Conlon

The Strongest Memories
  – Ann Conlon

All (Baba) Things Considered

Excuse Me, Which Way to God?

A few weeks ago, I was fortunate enough (excuse me, Bal Natu) to stay on the Meher Center for a while. It turned out that there were a couple of people there who had attended the '69 darshan in India and, with a little prompting, they regaled us for hours with their stories. As I particularly enjoy hearing Baba stories, I had a blast, but it also got me to thinking.

Fewer and fewer people are still alive who met Baba in His physical form. Even my generation--those who got to spend a lot of time with the Mandali in the '70s and '80s--are now "senior" citizens or close to it. And there is a new generation of Baba folks who never got the opportunity to spend much time, if any, with many of the Mandali. Does this portend anything for the future?

I used to think that meeting the Mandali and hanging out with them was the next best thing to being able to be with Baba in person. And I wondered how people could possibly get by once the Mandali were gone. I see that there were at least two fundamentally wrong assumptions in that.

First, I assumed that if it was important to me to spend time with the Mandali, then it must be important for others as well. Yet I am slowly coming to see--unfortunately (excuse me, Bal Natu) everything I learn comes slowly to me--that just because I needed the Mandali's guidance doesn't mean that others automatically do as well. Just because I like listening to Baba stories, doesn't mean that everyone should, or that it even serves any purpose for others to do so.

And secondly, I totally overlooked Baba's ability to do His work on His own, in His way, whether He is physically present or not, or whether His Mandali are alive or not. I have no doubt, and Baba has said this very clearly, that the Avatar works directly through His Mandali as if they are an extension of His physical body. But the Avatar, as the Eternal Perfect Master, has never been confined to just doing His work through His physical form.

As the numbers of the Mandali dwindle, as the time people can spend with them evaporates, Baba's ability to touch people's hearts and reduce them to tears (Mani used to call it "melting in His love," not crying) remains unaffected.

The same phenomenon occurs at Myrtle Beach. Baba is still palpably present to many, even though it's been 50 years since He was here last in physical form, and quite a few years since Kitty and Elizabeth carried on in His name.

Instead of feeling sorry for folks who didn't meet the Mandali, or worrying about how they will find their way, I have come to acknowledge that many have a more intimate inner connection with Baba than I have. The outward form of this connection is not important.

It doesn't matter if they don't enjoy listening to Baba stories. It doesn't matter if they don't like meeting in groups or reading the Discourses. It doesn't matter if some of them interpret following Baba's directives in a way I do not, because they are on their own path to and with Baba and that's all that does matter.

The Perfect Master, Ramakrishna, used to say that if you wanted to reach a distant city, you couldn't wait until you had a perfect set of directions to begin your journey. If you did that, not only would you never arrive, you would never even leave. The key was to simply start walking and, as you went, to ask for directions. At the beginning, most of the people you asked wouldn't have a clue how to get there and they would send you in lots of wrong directions. If you persevered, however, you would eventually get closer. And, as you got closer, more and more people would actually know the way and be able to give you good directions. We are all starting out from different places, so our paths will all be different. But as long as we are honest enough to admit to ourselves the possibility that we might be temporarily lost, and willing to ask for directions then, eventually, we will be given the right advice and will find God.

So I have concluded that I don't need to worry about the future, as I would have known if I had paid attention to the Mandali to begin with. Bal Natu used to avoid ever using the words "fortunate" or "unfortunate." He felt that this showed a lack of faith that everything that happens is determined by Baba's will. There is no question of good or bad luck, there is only His will and the way we react to it. I might be following a long and winding road to His door while others are on the express superhighway, but He is directing it all.