that from every eye light was spilling. What joy . . . and what grief! Mehera seemed the sum of all this feeling. After morning darshan, many women would gather round her bed where she sat telling stories of Baba in the old days . . . stories about His 'endearing little ways'. Her eyes would dance and sparkle and her face was seven years old, then suddenly she would recall His suffering, and that He was no longer there, and that was quite awful to watch. She said "Upasni told Him not to take on this Silence—that it would bring nothing but suffering. But Baba said, 'I was born to suffer.'" She also said that Baba loved to sing, loved to walk fast, and had a fiery temper in the old days. But one by one He denied Himself all this delight and took on terrible suffering. She mentioned the pitiful thinness of His legs those last months. She said, "Love Him, never forget Him for a moment! He loved to be loved!"
What came to me this time was the great human love Mehera has for Baba. She loved Him not only as God, but as her darling, her child, her baby. And all the years of being His best beloved have not made her casual about His least kindly gesture. Twice she recounted how Baba had sat on her bed—He never sits on anyone's bed—and, she said, she was greedy—she asked Him to sit on the other side also and bless it with His Presence.
I was sitting by her one darshan morning and saw Eruch speaking. I said 'Eruch is doombu—doombu (roly-poly)! Mehera looked thoughtful and said, "No, that is the wrong use of the word. Only babies are doombu-doombu. But do not get attached to any of these people or their talk. Think only of Baba."
"Think only of Baba". The last hug, the last embrace from Mehera, Mani, Rano, Naja, Khorshed, Meheru . . . It was like leaving your real family . . . those who are travelling with you on the Real journey, back to the Beloved.
Our last evening in Poona was spent at the Poona Baba Center. Madhusudan and his dear family entertained us with two songs, then Ramakrishnan welcomed us:
"We are conscious we are welcoming Meher Baba who resides in the heart of each one of you; knowing, feeling His presence in your hearts, we embrace you and we welcome you into our lives. We bow down to your love for Him, the love that has caused you all to cross continents and countries to come over here to bow down to Him in your hearts.
"This assembly of the awakened ones, this coming together of lovers in this house He has created for us, gladdens our hearts; we rejoice in His glory and we are grateful to Him. Life appears to me as an endless experience of amazements. As a child I thought God was my father and the World was my mother. When I grew up I was amazed to know God walks on earth age after age as man. And after many years I was amazed to know of His coming that I might meet Him in this world and in Poona! I was told God was here on earth. And one fine morning I watched Him from a distance; a few months later I walked behind this man with many others, and climbed to the top of a hill: Meherabad Hill, and the multitude gathered around Him. It was 1954. Since then, I have been trying to follow Him and serve Him along with many in Poona, and wished we could have a house where we could come together, sing His praises; out of His great compassion He made this possible. Again, to my great amazement, He opened this door with His own Divine Hands and sat on this chair. The children and the grown-ups sang songs of welcome. Seven children in seven colors, with seven garlands in seven colors garlanded Him and danced before Him; and He distributed sweets to us. We are all children. We have been trying our utmost to maintain the sanctity of this place, the atmosphere God has created to bring us together.
"One of the recent Masters said regarding the Avatar, 'The Avatar takes upon himself the nature of humanity, though the consciousness acting behind it is divine.'
"For the earth-conscious, the very fact that God manifests Himself is the greatest of splendors. We have been living under the spell of this splendour for so many years. Thousands coming from various countries, various creeds, to be with Him for a few minutes. On every occasion I was present. This is amazing. Now I see men from various parts of the world coming to Poona, honoring His invitation for His darshan and bowing down to Him in their hearts. I am amazed.