Different batches of the children entertained us with a display of drill etc. Then all of them, including the teachers, took darshan of Beloved Baba's chair. It was a joy to see their young faces shining with happiness as they received the birthday prasad which was generously served to one and all. There was much left over, even after a second serving, to the happy surprise of the village elders who had attended. It was distributed to the poorer families of the village. The incident reminds us of other such occasions with Baba of His bounty when food that was meant for a certain number was satisfactorily served to more than twice the number of people expected.
An essay competition in Maharathi on Baba's life was also held in which over eighty children participated. We saw their neatly written papers. One boy even drew two pictures of Beloved Baba. The children would come to M'azad in their spare time to borrow or read up on Baba's books. Prizes have been offered for the three best essays. They are being corrected by a close Baba lover, Bal Natu, who is a teacher in Kurudwar. On his holidays he has always come here to be of assistance to the mandali in his quiet efficient way.
With him for Baba's birthday came his friend from Pandharpur — a Sanskrit scholar versed in the Ramayana and Mahabharata. He gave a talk on Rama, Krishna and Baba as the one and same supreme Being, the Ancient One, who has come again as Meher Baba.
In the evening we went to 'Nagar to see the birthday procession. It was well-organized by the 'Nagar Center and worth seeing. All the symbols of the various religions were displayed to denote they all come from the One God. The sound of Baba's "Jai" rang from street to street as the procession progressed and was heard above the beat of the drums. The leegheen* dance was skillfully performed by 2 groups of dancers who were untiring in their enthusiasm .
Most beautiful was the life-size photo of Beloved Baba which dominated the whole scene. It was decorated by a frame of colored lights which twinkled like stars. There was also another photo of Beloved which the public could approach for puja with their offering of flowers. The atmosphere was electric with the presence of Beloved Baba's love.
A Bhundara — or feeding of the poor and of the villagers of Arangaon will be held sometime this month. It is part of Baba's birthday celebrations by Arangaon Center, helped with contributions from other Baba-lovers.
Love in Beloved Baba to you dear Filis and Adele, to Baba's dear George and to all Baba's dear ones of Meher Baba House from your M'azad family.
Ever-lovingly in His dear love,
P.S. Dear Adele, just received your loving letter. We are so happy to read about the Birthday Celebrations of our Beloved Avatar at Meher Baba House and to know about the little children who have come to Baba. They are fortunate indeed to love Him from such an early age.
*lejim , spelling in Lord Meher p. 933, p.1316