My Life Story with Avatar Meher Baba

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My Life Story with Avatar Meher Baba
By Keshava Narayan Nigam
An Avatar Meher Baba Trust eBook Copyright © May 2021 Avatar Meher Baba Perpetual
Public Charitable Trust, Ahmednagar M.S. India
Source: My Life Story with Avatar Meher Baba By Keshava Narayan Nigam Publisher Dr. (Mrs.) Meher Jyoti Kulshreshtha (M.Sc., Ph.D.) Copyright: Dr. (Mrs.) Meher Jyoti Kulshreshtha 'Jigyasa' B-2448, Indira Nagar. Lucknow - 226016 (U.P.) Printed by : Shivam Arts, Nishatganj, Lucknow

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Life Sketch of Avatar Meher Baba
The Silent Master
Merwan Sheriar Irani, now known as Meher Baba, was born in Poona on 25th February 1894. He had his education at St. Vincent's High School and later at Deccan College. As a student, he was keenly interested in poetry and spiritual literature. At the age of nineteen, he was one day called by the Sufi Sadguru Babajan, who used to sit under a neem tree. Babajan kissed him on his forehead and he was taken immediately into a Super Conscious state and became God-realised. For three days, after this incident, he was unconscious and for nine months he was semiconscious of his worldly surroundings. After this, he contacted Narayan Maharaj of Kedgaon, Tajuddin Baba of Nagpur and Sai Baba of Shirdi. When he saw Merwan, Sai Baba uttered only one word "Parvardigar". Sai Baba then directed him to visit Upasani Maharaj, who was staying at the neighbouring Khandoba temple at Shirdi. On seeing Merwan, Upasani Maharaj threw a stone, which hit him on the forehead exactly where Babajan had kissed him. From then onwards, Meher Baba began to regain his body consciousness, without any loss or curtailment of his divine consciousness. This descent was completed in 1921. After this, Upasani Maharaj asked some of his devotees to join Meher Baba. He also raised his hand and addressing Meher Baba, he said, "You are the Avatar, God in human form".
Avatar Meher Baba opened an ashram in Poona and later in Bombay, and finally at Meherabad, Ahmednagar, (M.S.). Here during the earlier period, He opened a school, a hospital, a mast ashram and Prem Ashram. On 10th July 1925, Meher Baba entered his great silence which continued uninterrupted till he dropped His body on 31st January 1969. For many years, He conveyed His thoughts through an alphabet board but on 7th Oct. 1954, the board was given up and since then He conveyed His thoughts only through hand gestures. He frequently entered into periods of seclusion and fasts, which were the occasions for his universal spiritual working on the inner planes. Avatar Meher Baba visited every nook and corner of India picking out and contacting masts (God-intoxicated ones) and helping them on their onward

My Life Story with
Avatar Meher Baba
Keshava Narayan Nigam B.A., LL.B.
Publisher Dr. (Mrs.) Meher Jyoti Kulshreshtha
(M.Sc., Ph.D.)

Publisher Dr. (Mrs.) Meher Jyoti Kulshreshtha (M.Sc., Ph.D.)
Copyright: Dr. (Mrs.) Meher Jyoti Kulshreshtha 'Jigyasa' B-2448, Indira Nagar. Lucknow - 226016 (U.P.) Phone: 0522-2350214
All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording or any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from publisher.
Printed by : Shivam Arts, Nishatganj, Lucknow Phone: 0522-4104922 Mobile: 9415061690 e-mail: [email protected]

I feel myself very very fortunate to have Sri Keshava Narayan Nigam (whom we called as BABU) as my father and take it as a rare and loving blessing of my Beloved Avatar Meher Baba, which He has kindly bestowed upon me. From my childhood, my father has been and still today is my ideal for Baba's work and even for my day-to-day life. He occupies second place in my heart, just besides Beloved Meher Baba, who is unquestionably the first. Somehow, at an early age I realized that I have to obey my father implicitly like obeying Beloved BABA.
What I liked in him was his kindness, forgiveness, honesty, cheerfulness, great sense of humour, punctuality. To us he was very considerate, loving and caring in spite of his acute poverty and 24 hours busy schedule of Baba's Work. He looked after and cared for every aspect of our lives viz. illness. education, marriage, and was thoughtful of every minutest details. BABU had a high degree of forgiveness; so I used to share everything, good or bad, with him without any fear because I was sure that he would forgive me. He was a very good counselor and he was always there, whenever I needed him or his counseling. Most prominent feature of my parents' personality, which I still appreciate and find difficult to follow, was their cheerfulness and complete resignation to Baba's Will. From their mood or talk we could not even guess the real financial situation of the household. In this context. I wish to narrate an incident, which elucidates not only BABU's complete resignation to His Will, but also BABA's omniscience. It was September, 1969. Beloved Baba had dropped His body. My Junior Research Fellowship was to terminate on 15th September and my younger sister, Meher Mani, was studying in M.Sc. final and was residing with

me in the Kailash Hostel, University of Lucknow. The term of three years of my Ph.D. was going to complete on 15th and there was no hope of getting extension of my Fellowship. After my M.Sc. I used to manage both my sister's expenses and mine. So, now her M.Sc. and my Ph.D. both were incomplete. It seemed impossible to complete both because BABU was getting Rs. 150 per month salary as editor of 'Meher Pukar' a monthly Hindi Journal. I had applied for the post of Scientist B in CDRI, Lucknow, where I was doing my Ph.D. work. Its interview was in the end of September. I was very tense. I informed BABU telegraphically that I was not selected and set out for Hamirpur (My home). When I reached there, BABU gave me Rs. 1500 for our expenses. I refused to take the money because I thought that this amount must have been taken as loan and I hated to put extra burden on him. So, I told BABU that I would manage the expenses from my savings. BABU was quick to guess my hitch and narrated as follows:-
"When I received your telegram, I felt helpless and could think of no way how would you meet the expenses. After a while, I remembered Baba's message, ''DON'T WORRY, BE HAPPY..." and all my worries vanished and I left everything to Him. The moment I left everything to Baba, brother Pukar came and handed me Rs. 1500, telling me that when he had gone to Baba in January, 1969, Baba had given him this amount for my expenses; on his return he forgot to give it to me. He remembered it that very day, and came to give the money......." what a perfect timing typical of Beloved Baba! Hearing this, I accepted the money.
Beloved Baba called BABU in October, 1968 and asked to spread his both hands before Him, which were badly trembling because of Parkinson's disease. Then Baba told him to take best treatment and that nothing will help. I witnessed the truth of this statement. Even after every kind of treatment, Allopathic. Homeopathic. and Ayurvedic etc. it could not be

cured completely. True to Baba's statement, BABU got the best treatment in spite of financial problems. Dr. H.P. Bharucha of Navsari used to send the medicines, which were very costly, in advance. In 70s, Dr. Bert came to examine BABU on his own and after returning to USA, he used to send a medicine, and the name is still clear in my memory, 'Sinemet'; later a prominent Neuropath, Dr. Devika Nag at Lucknow was amazed to know that BABU was getting it here in India. Dr. Bert continued sending Sinemet well in advance until BABU's demise.
BABU accepted his suffering as Baba's 'Prasad' (Gift) and used to console me whenever I worried about his health. Once I noticed that his condition was very critical and his one eye was bulging out. I was so shocked that I started crying. Consoling me, BABU said, "Don't worry; this is Baba's Prasad, you don't know; I am in great bliss internally. This suffering is nothing."
Most important part of his character was his obedience to Baba and his dedication to 'Baba Work', which was never affected in spite of his disease. In spite of Parkinson's disease, Baba ordered him to translate "God Speaks" in Hindi, edit ''Pathik''. His memory was greatly affected due to disease and his hands severely tremored so much that he could not hold the pen. Therefore, he always needed someone to write. His speech too was not clear, and it was very difficult to understand his dictation. A lot of patience was needed on the part of the writer and it consumed a lot of time. In such condition, having been able to complete the translation of "God Speaks" by him was nothing less than a miracle of Beloved Baba. In spite of his impaired memory, whenever I used to ask BABU something related to Baba, his memory worked wonderfully and at the same time his speech became quite clear. He was actively taking part in Baba Programmes, guiding the arrangements etc. until his last breath. When he was confined to bed, Baba Lovers

followed his instructions in organization of the programmes. To commemorate the historical night vigil of 9/10th February 1954, when Baba declared Himself the AVATAR of the Age at Meherastana (Hamirpur-U.P.) for the first time, BABU used to go to Meherastana with Baba Lovers on that date every year for the night vigil. After his death on 8th February 1987, we, along with other Baba Lovers, took his body on 9th February in a hired bus to Meherastana, singing Bhajans, interned the body in the evening of 9th February and observed the night vigil. Thus BABU led the caravan to Meherastana for the night vigil even after his death.
Without a few words about my mother, Smt. Sudha Keshava Nigam, this narration would be incomplete. She played a very important role in BABU's life. She helped in every possible way to enable him to concentrate only upon his Beloved 'Baba Work'. I don't remember ever seeing her quarrelling or complaining to him about her sufferings and humiliations, which kept coming to her due to poverty. I always found her cheerful and loving to us. She used to tell us stories of her good and bad days, her sufferings when BABU was imprisoned while participating in freedom struggle movement. In those days, untouchability was very prominent. As BABU was the head of 'Baba Work' in Hamirpur district, Baba lovers of all castes used to come to our house and take tea, meals etc. Naturally, my mother, including us, used to wash the utensils used by them. Women of local Baba lover families used to humiliate and taunt us in special occasion programmes (Baba's Birthday etc) during lunch or dinner. On such occasions, they never sat near us. They did not even drink water at our home and not allow us to enter their kitchen. My mother had to face all this humiliation. In BABU's last days, my mother looked after him all alone. She played a very important role from the

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My Life Story with Avatar Meher Baba