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34

 

"Such organization work makes the disciple more than ever hungry, unless one can control one's thoughts. Baba's training is not like books, where one can intellectually think one has gained control over the ordinary functions of life; he makes one demonstrate control and gives one little time to think that one is doing it.

 

We have uprooted our household as well, during our fast period. For the past four months, we have been staying near a large reservoir eight miles from Ahmednagar, which supplies the entire city, at a place called Pimpalgaon (place of the Pimpal trees); but now our ashram there is being considerably enlarged and other changes being made to augment Baba's work. Also the ashram at Meherabad, which is about the same distance on the other side of Ahmednagar city, is being enlarged, and certain of the very old buildings, that have been there from the commencement, are being restored. So, for the time being, we have to be elsewhere, and our smaller group has moved into two houses, one for the women and the other for the men disciples, in Ahmednagar city. The house where we are staying at present belongs to the family who offered it to Baba and moved out themselves to do so. It is a large and lovely place, and located so no other people live too near, there is enough acreage to get exercise by walking about within the compound. The garden is shaded by majestic trees (banyan trees), and there is flaming bougainvillea and blooming banana trees, as well as sweet-smelling flowers.

 

"I know that Norina and I have never spent such a good winter as these past months in India. The nights are cool and the days not at all too warm. If we did not read the papers, and hear from Baba, who has been in so many out-of-the-way places, under trying and hard conditions, tell us of the refugees,* it seems as far off as, for example, Europe, of which one reads of the plight of the refugees there, or in Palestine. There surely must be come deeper reason to this migration in so many parts of the world at the same time; the actual causes are different, or are they? Is not 'intolerance' the basis of all? Are any of us completely free of it? However, religious intolerance has always been the worst kind, throughout history. Yet viewed in the light of history, our own country was the indirect good that came out of religious intolerance abroad. Migrations in the past have in the end come to rest in better lands. Until people know and practice that there is one humanity, they will still have to learn by trial and error, it seems. There is only one way to acquire tolerance. That is to be it. Our small cosmos with Baba is composed of individuals of the various religions and castes and nationalities and customs. Strange as it may seem customs are the most habit-forming. I believe what Kipling meant, about East is East and West is West, that it is the little daily customs, the habit life that is so ingrained, it is as difficult as changing your own nervous and emotional system. Yet that is what life with Baba is; you 'change,'— if you do not do it, you can not expect it from the world.

 

Elizabeth C. Patterson

 

From a Nasik Notebook, Continued — from page 31

 

Meher Ashram, Nasik, India, February 1936

 

There is nothing particular by way of information since I sent you the last diary. For Baba is in seclusion and sees none, very little even of the mandali staying with and near him. Visitors are all returned after explanation — and they come from great distances only with the desire for darshan! Their disappointment when this is denied could be better imagined that [sic] expressed. It is so pinching to tell them this, but we have to do our duty, however painful.

 

Thus with his 'seclusion' combined with a silence for years, all is practically quiet at this front while the whole world is topsy-turvy with cries of discontent and disparity all

 

*From partition

**(sic) “than” is probably intended – webmaster-J.K.

 

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