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21

 

He had a close link with Bernard Shaw for his powers of persuasion were so great that he was given the rights to make films of Shaw's plays, and this established his fame in England. He wanted to film St. Joan; and certainly Shaw gives some most inspiring speeches to Joan and with moving insight she talks of the loneliness of God, "God is alone . . . and the loneliness of God is His strength." When God incarnates as the Avatar He suffers for all and so redeems mankind, but He is alone because we cannot fathom Him.

 

Pascal did not do St. Joan and died before he was able to go to India again. In his last letters to Baba he talks hopefully about plans — "I will bring my cameraman and my staff with me because I intend to do the two pictures — "Ghandi" and "The Slippers of a Perfect Master" together. When you hear "The Slippers of a Perfect Master" you will laugh tears. I will bring the scenario with me . . . I will be there the end of August in your everlasting arms. I know you are always with me . . . "

 

Another aspect of the film project came in Nasik, 1937, when a group of Westerners were invited to stay with Baba in India. Each was given special tasks; Margaret Craske was given the theme for six dances which Baba wished her to create for the film. After each one was rehearsed they were performed for Him; one which seemed particularly interesting was the Mirror dance. Perhaps Baba used these to establish the work Margaret was destined to do for Him through her teaching and to bring a group of fine young dancers to Him in America, also perhaps to put the seal on a blueprint for a film in the future. Baba said, "Dancing is a very good art; if expressed rightly it has divine qualities and if properly expressed, it will have a wonderful effect." He also said: "I love artists, because through art one can express oneself. . . .Art, when inspired with love, leads to higher realms. Love art, and that art will open for you the inner life . . . when you are lost in it, your ego diminishes, Love infinite appears; and when Love is created, God is attained. So you see how art can lead one to find Infinite God."

 

Drama has always been used to portray spiritual truth for there is great power in the spoken word and when used with music and dancing it becomes even more potent.

 

Baba Himself used the analogy of drama in His discourse on reincarnation and karma, to describe the continued life of the individual soul through its many acts, until it becomes conscious of the truth that the author of the drama became all the actors . . . so as to enter into full and conscious possession of His own creative infinity. It is a great cosmic drama.

 

The live theatre at its best can give us the type of play which portrays spiritual life, as Baba explained in Hollywood. It can also illustrate the art of co-operative effect. There is a play, producers, actors and finally an audience and in special circumstances when all are in harmony, a magical unity can be created.

 

Baba gives the following helpful advice to actors: "Art is one of the sources through which the soul expresses itself and inspires others. But to express art thoroughly one must have the inner emotions opened thoroughly . . . There are many actors who either through inferiority complex or through nervousness feel they cannot express and this (negative) feeling of the mind checks the expression. While acting, think you are one of the greatest actors in the world and try to express yourself thoroughly."

 

It is, however, very necessary that every artist should acquire the technique of his art. The advice given by Charles Purdom, closely connected with the theatre, to an American actress is very valuable. "You have to acquire technique because without it you are helpless, a mere amateur, but technique alone is empty form. You need to develop presence of heart with technique transcended. That development is what makes the true artist . . . the art is not simply presenting the person, but imaginative representation of human reality. Unless the actor can go out of himself, he can't do that. Classical action is to create a form and act within it. It is the trained mind making exact use of psychic and physical powers. It is to be the master of the technique of your

 

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