20 Aug 2012 – Darshan from train – a blessed Muslim

Darshan from train – a blessed Muslim

BABA STOPPED in Secunderabad briefly for mast work and then continued by train. A touching incident occurred on the train between Secunderabad andSholapur. Baba was travelling incognito by third class, dressed in ordinary clothes, wearing a Kashmiri-type fur hat and dark sun glasses. The train was so packed that the only way to enter the compartment was through the windows. At one station, an old Muslim with a white flowing beard came running up to their compartment, holding up a five-year-old boy, pleading with the passengers to take him inside. Those inside began protesting, saying it was impossible since they were already so crowded. As the train whistle sounded, the old man became desperate and shouted, “For God’s sake, take the child in!”

At this point, Baba ordered the mandali to help the man and lift the boy inside. Amidst loud arguments with their fellow passengers, the mandali did as they were told, brought the boy in through the window, and sat him down next to Baba. The old man ran to the next compartment, and held on to a railing as the train started. At each stop, he would come back to see that the boy was all right.

Observing the old man’s anxiety or restlessness, Baba ordered the mandali to make room for the man inside. After much trouble and vociferous complaints from the other passengers, the mandali succeeded in pulling the man in through the window. He squeezed in next to Baba and put the boy on his lap.

In the course of conversation with the old Muslim, the mandali learned he was fromGulbarga, and asked, as was their habit, if he knew any masts or saints thereabouts. The man was surprised by their question and asked, “Why do you ask about saints? People go to a saint with two distinct objects: either for obtaining wealth and prosperity, or for God. Which do you seek?”

Eruch explained, “We are Parsis from Ahmednagar, but spiritually-minded and interested in saints.”

Hearing that they hailed from Ahmednagar, the old man reproached them, “What? You say you are Parsis from Ahmednagar and you do not even know about your own great saint who lives near there, named Meher Baba? Why are you running after others?”

The mandali, in order to avoid disclosing Baba’s identity, had to pretend they knew nothing about Meher Baba, and casually asked who he was.

The man laughed derisively at their ignorance, and chided, “Why he is a very, very great saint of a high order. He is worshiped by thousands of all communities.

“I can’t believe you have never heard of him!

“I myself have been to see him at his ashram at Meherabad twice, but was not fortunate enough to have his darshan. Once, he was away in a foreign country, and once, he was in seclusion. But I am determined to pay my respects to him before I die, and take my whole family to him.

“At least once in my lifetime, I must have the good fortune of seeing him. I strongly suggest you go to him if you are interested in spiritual personalities.”

At this point, the train stopped at Gulbarga, and the Muslim got down, thanking them for making room for himself and the boy. After he had left, Baba asked if they had any of his photographs with them. Eruch pulled a copy of the Meher Baba Journal from his bed roll. Baba bowed his head to his own photograph, and sent Eruch with the journal to give to the man, with these words, “Tell him who his companion on the train has been, and that I bless him and his family. Now there is no need for him to visit Meherabad.”

Eruch caught the old man outside the station as he was about to board atongaand handed him the journal. When the old man saw Meher Baba’s picture in it, and Eruch revealed Baba’s identity to him, he exploded in anger. He loudly abused Eruch for having kept it a secret all this time. Eruch tried to explain the Master’s reasons for not seeing anyone and travelling incognito, saying, “You are so blessed to have journeyed with him for an hour when hundreds of his followers thirst for his darshan, which he does not allow even for a moment.”

But the man would not listen, and cursed Eruch and his entire “younger generation.” The man explained how restless he had felt in the other compartment, and that was why he kept returning to theirs, somehow irresistibly drawn to be near Baba after having longed for his darshan for so many years.

Eruch ran back to catch the train, and the old man ran after him. Eruch jumped on board. The man saw Baba leaning out of the window, without his dark glasses and hat, as if waiting for him. The old man bowed his head to him, and Baba placed his hand on his head in blessing as the train pulled away.

Lord Meher online, p2751

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