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23

 

Baba continued addressing the gathering: "I have been seeing the Westerners and giving them My embrace and love and also discourses. Today is the first day of the East-West gathering. I want the Easterners to come to Me, one by one, and to put their hands on My knees and I will pat each one. That will amount to My embracing and meeting the Easterners. Come, come one by one. All of you will not be able to come to Me today; those left over can come near Me tomorrow.

 

“The purpose of this gathering is not to give discourses or messages to My lovers. Many discourses and messages have been given in the past; another volume of My discourses will soon be printed in Australia. More than all messages or discourses, your love for Me will bring you to Me as you should come to Me."

 

After the translations and a song from the Poona Bhajan Mandali, the Australians approached Baba, then the Easterners, women first, came up to the platform and took Baba's darshan. In the traditional way, they took off their sandals and this caused some delay and congestion. Then, very suddenly, it began to rain, in fact to pour, and Baba gestured to Mr. Ramakrishnan to hurry the line. In a very few moments we were soaked and Baba gestured for the Western women to go inside Guruprasad. Here began a new kind of East-West exchange as the women mandali gave the Western women dry clothes and we hung up our wet garments. It was quite a colorful scene as Mehera, Mani, Goher, Rano, Naja and Meheru tried to find garments to fit us. I was wearing a gauze skirt and petticoat held up precariously by one pin. I thought one good sneeze would be my undoing.

 

Outside, the microphone shorted out and Baba gestured, "Even though there is no mike, think of Me." When we returned to our seats it was through squishing mud. But the Eastern women, many with bare feet and a child on the hip, were still patiently standing in long lines for Baba's darshan. It was announced Baba would greet Easterners until 5:00 p.m., then the Westerners; and then arti would be performed. Those who missed His darshan could come up to Him for darshan tomorrow, but no one should do so tomorrow who had been to Him today.

 

Even in the midst of greeting the 5,000 present at the Sahavas, Baba was thinking of those who could not come. Someone came through the throng to me to ask for an address only I knew―and only Baba could have known I knew! He sent the lucky one this cable:

 

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