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16

 

their own ... I'm offering now that freedom to one and all. If you now decide to leave me you do so honorably and all you have done so far will continue to stand to your credit. But if, having chosen to stick to me, you later give me up you would earn the title of mardood (apostate), thus wiping out all your past service and obedience to me. Those who decide to stick to me may have to suffer in the future; but one thing is certain, they will not suffer alone will equally share with them their hardships and privations."

 

In the many years that I, with other disciples, have loved and followed Baba in his life of 'Mastery in Servitude,' we have known him give this fair chance, time and again, to his followers ― of under going a searching self-analysis and remaking their choice; and time and again have we witnessed the renewed avowal of love and obedience.

 

Here we are asked to decide again. It was clear for all concerned that just as Baba was free of all bindings and promises, every follower was being made equally free to decide afresh whether to give up or continue to hold on to Baba's daaman.

 

There is no restraint placed on what one should or should not expect from Baba, but all those who are asked to decide afresh to continue their life of obedience to Baba, have got to be prepared not to ask anything of Baba on any account, spiritual or material, at any time both before and after July 31st, 1955. This means being bound by obedience to Baba without in any way binding him to do 'this' or `that,' `today' or `tomorrow,' anything personal or impersonal, important or unimportant, temporary or permanent, or give Baba up once and for all.

 

In response to some query by one of the mandali that morning Baba said, "Each is free to think of me and interpret my work as he feels or understands best. Either my words must be presented as they stand, or if interpreted by you, you must not fail to state it is your own interpretation . . . I never denied being Perfect and being the Avatar but you do not know that yet. I know I am the One without a second, alone and matchless. You would be quite right to assert and proclaim whatever you truly believe me to be—never

 

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