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31

 

something in BABA's ear. BABA leaned forward to lend his ear to the earnest little fellow and was very, very happy to hear that young master "Big Mustachios" wanted to become his disciple.

 

In the afternoon a few hours were reserved for the exclusive gathering of women. It was the first time that BABA had appeared before a vast concourse of wholly feminine faces. They came from every walk of life; they were poor and rich, old and young, educated and illiterate, and they sat before BABA in rows without distinction of precedence except in the order of their arrival at the temple.

 

Later in the evening the program was open to all. The enthusiasm of the crowds, however, rose to such a pitch that when, having finished distributing the prasad to one and all, BABA was leaving the Gita Mandir he was virtually mobbed, and it was a task for his men to get him safely to the car.

 

Under the heading, "Thousands Flock To The Gita Mandir To Have Darshan Of Meher Baba," the Nagpur Times published on the front page of its weekly edition of Sunday, January 4th, details of these programs. The last part of a program was described as follows:

 

ďAt night the Darshan ceremony was open to all and over ten thousand people had gathered at the temple at the time of reporting. For some time the temple, otherwise calm and quiet, became a place of pilgrimage and people jostled each other to force their way nearer to the Saint . . . Meher BABA was stated to have said that, GOD willing, he would break his silence and lead humanity towards happiness . . . "

 

The "Open-to-all" program was continued in the Gita Mandir the following morning (January 4th). A remarkable feature of this gathering was the sudden appearance of a local mast known as Kuttewala (keeper of dogs). Just as the function was about to start, the mast walked in quietly and deliberately sat inside the roped-off passage where the people were shortly to receive prasad from BABA, and he sat in this exclusive vantage point facing BABA. BABA signed to his men not to disturb him.

 

After BABA had bowed down to the gathering, a special message was read on his behalf. The mast also appeared to be listening with rapt attention and as soon as it was finished he walked out as unobtrusively as he had entered.

 

BABA visited the place where Tajuddin Baba had lived and breathed his last. He was very warmly received there by the Rajah of Nagpur who is a

 

 

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