Friday, 15 May 2009

What do you remember most?

People often ask me, 'what do you remember most about Baba's physical presence?' There are two things; His scent and the total absence of any feeling of His being silent.

I was a child and my memories are those of a child in His presence. Baba smelled totally wonderful. It wasn't a man-made perfume-like scent. This was an emanation (I am grown up now and I know bigger words!), a sensation more than a scent. You were aware of it as soon as you were in the same room, and when you got a hug - were drenched in this. I still don't know enough words to describe it, though. A mix of the scent of earth when rain falls, roses, tuberoses, sandalwood, person, God..pure magic.

Our silent Beloved was not quite that silent, really! Even though there was probably Eruch or Mani interpreting His gestures in the background, I always found that when directly addressed by Baba, I did not have to wait until I heard the interpretation to understand. It was as if He spoke directly to my brain (or more likely, my heart) and I knew what He was gesturing.

A small story about my sister. Once in Guruprasad, Baba was sitting on the sofa-chair in the dining room space, and the sahavasees were sitting in front of Him, women on the left, men on the right. Dolly was a baby, just started crawling about and pulling herself up to stand and wobble. So what does she do? She crawls to Baba's side, pulls herself up by holding His Sadra, and looks up at Him. I can still see this as clearly as if it were happening right now. My sister and I both could talk much sooner than we walked, and this little tot says to the Avatar, 'Baba I love You, do You love me?' Such an 'awwwww' moment, isn't it?


  1. very sweet, vivid descriptions, like none I've ever read, really. Thank you, Jai Baba!
    Max Reif, Walnut Creek, CA USA

  2. Such a innocent story of your sister. She is definitely very fortunate.
    Jai Baba to You and Lots of Love

  3. I think I know the scent you mean. We had a sadra of Baba's at 7 Inman Square, preserved inside a plastic bag inside a specially made box. When you took it out of the plastic (which no one was supposed to do), you could still catch that faint scent of sandalwood? rose? musk? Baba!

  4. Ah well, Zo - I won't tell anyone that someone (who shall remain nameless) did sniff the sadra! But yes, just that scent.

  5. That is awesome! Do you ever smell Him now? I'll smell scents that are not there once in a blue moon. For a split second. It's a nice thing. Here's a funny one: One of my favorite spots is the Lagoon Cabin. Since I started in 1987 going to the Center, a copy of Love Personified has been in the Lagoon Cabin. Now if you open up Love Personified it smells like the Lagoon Cabin. I would look at that book all the time. It's a wreck now due to my mauling. As I would look at the photos, I thought "How Glorious! Meher Baba is so close!" He is so close, but He's also very FUNNY! It's only because the ink is smelly, that the room smells like the book, not the other way around, but I didn't put it together (even though was in the printing industry) until many years later. So when I want to whiff the Lagoon Cabin, I open Love Personified.

  6. Eruch's cabin sometimes has a strong whiff of urine. Just for a fleeting few moments, but in the last months of his life, when he had become very weak, his bladder wasn't strong enough to hold on until he could get to the pot, so he had a tin bucket right by his bed, and used that. However, he sometimes spilled a bit, and there used to be a whiff of that around. After he died, it went away, but suddenly once in a while you get that strong smell, and I always think, "Hello Eruch Mamu!" (Mama is maternal uncle in Gujarati, and that is what we called him.)


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