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Articles

Amartithi
  – Bruce Felknor

"You'll find Me in the garden"
  – Jenny Keating

'Heart Tires of Its Gaudy Dress' – Francis Brabazon
  – Buck Busfield

HOLLYWOOD
  – Billy Goodrum

Trust and Intimacy
  – Jenny Keating

Living with Baba
  – Bruce Felknor

When Words Fail . . . Just Use More Words
  – Buck Busfield

Suffering and Service
  – Juniper Lesnik

SPOILER ALERT
  – Billy Goodrum

The charm of His ways. . .
  – Jenny Keating

The Importance of Being Furnished
  – Bruce Felknor

It's Been Fun
  – Steve Klein

Let’s Talk about Love
  – Juniper Lesnik

Cannes
  – Billy Goodrum

In the world but not of it . . .
  – Jenny Keating

Give Me Your Imperfections
  – Wendy Connor

Children of the One God
  – Bruce Felknor

As the Poet Says
  – Steve Klein

Happy Endings
  – Jenny Keating

Thoughts on Furniture
  – Billy Goodrum

Going Home
  – Juniper Lesnik

A Tale of Two Connections
  – Bruce Felknor

The Flowering Seed
  – Wendy Connor

Baby Steps
  – Steve Klein

Patience
  – Jenny Keating

Hold On!
  – Juniper Lesnik

Waiting for the New Humanity
  – Billy Goodrum

Remembering
  – Bruce Felknor

The Beloved's Beloved
  – Wendy Connor

Compare and Contrast
  – Steve Klein

It's in the struggle . . .
  – Jenny Keating

Time
  – Juniper Lesnik

The Tipping Point
  – Billy Goodrum

Learning Poise
  – Bruce Felknor

When "Good Enough" Isn't
  – Steve Klein

Conflict and Joy
  – Jenny Keating

Sleepless in San Jose
  – Juniper Lesnik

Vacation Incarnation
  – Steve Klein

Nerve Endings of the Soul
  – Jenny Keating

"Let the World Wait"
  – Wendy Connor

Religion vs Spirituality
  – Steve Klein

The Bigger Challenge
  – Wendy Connor

Que Sera Sera
  – Steve Klein

To Be Honest
  – Juniper Lesnik

Praise and Blame
  – Steve Klein

Being Right
  – Steve Klein

To Love God is To Love Our Fellow Beings
  – Juniper Lesnik

God is Alive in the World
  – Wendy Connor

Determined to Be His
  – Steve Klein

The Stuff We're Made Of
  – Juniper Lesnik

"I Will Always Be With You": Memories of the East West Gathering
  – Wendy Connor

Half Full or Half Empty?
  – Steve Klein

Love The One You're With
  – Steve Klein

Ordinary Life
  – Juniper Lesnik

Baba Loved Us Too
  – Wendy Connor

Feeling His Love
  – Steve Klein

He is both Father and Mother
  – Juniper Lesnik

A Leap of Faith
  – Wendy Connor

Becoming His
  – Steve Klein

Don't Worry, Be Happy
  – Juniper Lesnik

A Life Worth Living
  – Wendy Connor

Love The One You're With
  – Steve Klein

What a Mighty Beloved our Beloved is
  – Wendy Connor

To thine own self be true?
  – Steve Klein

The Sweets of His Love
  – Wendy Connor

Sickness and Health
  – Juniper Lesnik

Giving Advice
  – Steve Klein

"Garlic-Faced"
  – Wendy Connor

To Love and Be Loved
  – Juniper Lesnik

Talking About The Truth
  – Steve Klein

The Script was Written Long Ago
  – Wendy Connor

Excuse Me, Which Way to God?
  – Steve Klein

Letting Go
  – Juniper Lesnik

The Mosquitoes are Bad Today
  – Wendy Connor

What If A Teaching Moment Never Comes?
  – Steve Klein

Beads On One String
  – Juniper Lesnik

Youth Sahavas '07
  – Wendy Connor

Stop, You're Both Right!
  – Steve Klein

God, Please Give me a Job
  – Juniper Lesnik

"It Just Passes More Quickly"
  – Wendy Connor

Multiple Meher Babas
  – Steve Klein

Winking Back
  – Juniper Lesnik

The Treasure Within
  – Wendy Connor

Holding On, But Losing One's Grip
  – Steve Klein

1969
  – Ann Conlon

Obedience
  – Ann Conlon

Meher Center – The Way It Was
  – Ann Conlon

Armageddon, Anyone?
  – Ann Conlon

What Does Baba Want Me to Do?
  – Ann Conlon

Baba's 'Things'
  – Ann Conlon

What Does THAT Mean?
  – Ann Conlon

The Way It Was – Meherabad
  – Ann Conlon

Doing "Baba Work"
  – Ann Conlon

Broken Heads
  – Ann Conlon

Enid
  – Ann Conlon

On Being Ill
  – Ann Conlon

Meherjee
  – Ann Conlon

To Each His Own
  – Ann Conlon

Youth Sahavas
  – Ann Conlon

Kitty
  – Ann Conlon

The Lonely Path
  – Ann Conlon

Isn't He Enough?
  – Ann Conlon

He Said What?
  – Ann Conlon

Goher
  – Ann Conlon

Taking a Dare
  – Ann Conlon

Seeking Suffering
  – Ann Conlon

Amartithi
  – Ann Conlon

Dreams
  – Ann Conlon

Margaret
  – Ann Conlon

"The Disciple"
  – Ann Conlon

I Wonder ...
  – Ann Conlon

Backbiting, etc.
  – Ann Conlon

Hearing His Name
  – Ann Conlon

Rites, Rituals and Ceremonies
  – Ann Conlon

His Promise
  – Ann Conlon

"Baba's Group"
  – Ann Conlon

Then and Now
  – Ann Conlon

Middlemen Revisited
  – Ann Conlon

Padri
  – Ann Conlon

Gateway Days
  – Ann Conlon

The New Life
  – Ann Conlon

Books, Books and More Books
  – Ann Conlon

Elizabeth Patterson
  – Ann Conlon

His "Last Warning"
  – Ann Conlon

Is That A Religion Coming?
  – Ann Conlon

Detachment
  – Ann Conlon

A Country of Our Own?
  – Ann Conlon

Manifestation: Did He Or Didn't He?
  – Ann Conlon

Remembering Mohammed
  – Ann Conlon

Advice (Sort-Of) for Newcomers
  – Ann Conlon

You're a Baba Lover If...
  – Ann Conlon

Real Happiness
  – Ann Conlon

Baba Lover, Baba Follower or Both?
  – Ann Conlon

Meherazad – The Way It Was
  – Ann Conlon

The Strongest Memories
  – Ann Conlon

All (Baba) Things Considered

Learning Poise

Baba repeatedly stresses the importance of learning detachment. It’s a central theme in his statements about the elimination of the selfish ego and the tremendous importance of non-binding action. Since that’s a rather advanced course of study for those of us here in nursery school, learning poise presents itself as a stepping-stone towards learning real detachment.

The School of Poise has a rich curricula of self-effacing experiences, not at all exclusive to Baba lovers, quite the opposite; but our connection to Baba transforms these occurrences and he uses them to draw us closer to him. He gives us the opportunity to actively remember him, rely upon him, feel his support and encouragement and thus strengthen the bond of love to him. He helps us to, as he said, try our best and leave the results to him. For example....

Over the years, I have had many opportunities to sing or act in Baba venues; and of all these, Meherazad is the crucible. Here especially, one wants to please the audience, to be diverting and add something positive to the moment. While the seasoned performer enters into this arena with the understanding that there may occasionally be “garlic in the ice cream,” the same person is buoyed by the generous nature of the audience and the loving atmosphere.  By and large, things go fairly well.

There are, however, those performances that don’t go so well. Once, while playing guitar accompaniment for my lovely spouse — whose vocal prowess is formidable and who has the ability to “deliver the goods” — things didn’t go that well. The song was the deceptively treacherous “Unchained Melody,” which, while it has all the elements today’s Mandali Hall performer could want in terms of dramatic heft and musical range, it also has unassuming bits surrounding the big parts that can lure one into a false sense of security — a pitfall for any performer. Throw in the setting in which your tender heart is overflowing with earnest desire to give a lively and moving performance, and you’ve got a snare of Avataric proportions.

On this particular day, I did something grossly inept by beginning the song in the wrong meter — like trying to play a waltz in 4/4 time or reading aloud from an upside-down book — and one of those moments where “time stands still” occurred. Even as I was playing the song, I became simultaneously aware that: a) I wasn’t playing it correctly; b) my spouse was “concerned” about this; and c) even the gamest of the women mandali there bore looks of mild apprehension, while others in the room projected the aspect of sympathetic persons watching a train-wreck in progress.

My face (which is far too informative about my inner state for my liking) did nothing to counter-influence the audience’s reaction, since it resembled the flashing red light of a busy railroad crossing. Something had to be done to break the spell, so I stopped playing and, feeling that the moment called for an unambiguous statement behind which everyone in the room could unite, I said, “The accompaniest is an oaf.” (That’s what I actually said. The dictionary informs me, however, that what I meant to say was “accompanist.” That’s a two-for-one bargain.)

We bravely began anew and all went well. The soaring parts were highly effective and the meditative interludes were well-rendered. People enjoyed it, but that did little to assuage my embarrassment, whose total effects are largely realized in the fleeting moment in which it arises.

On another occasion, I was giving a performance of Buz Connor’s “Surrender” in the Meherazad garden, in front of Mehera’s veranda. It was just after Baba’s Birthday and the last Meherazad day of the Pilgrim Year, so it was a crowded house. The way I play it, the song runs 5 ½ or 6 minutes — a bit long for that setting, and especially so since it came at the end of the already well-used entertainment time-slot.

Meheru had been enjoying the performances that morning, all the while perched upon a stone step with a very bad back that had been paining her for some time already. A circumstance like this underscores what must be an unwanted feature of being one of Baba’s Mandali at this time in Creation, i.e., “all eyes are upon you” and it’s virtually impossible to make a move unnoticed.

Somewhere around the 4 ½ minute mark, Meheru, who was by this time extremely uncomfortable, arose from her seat during a theatrical pause in the song, effectively concluding the performance ante eam finis (“before the end” — I think the Latin takes a bit of the sting out of it, don’t you ?) When she arose, there was a sort of lurching, uncoordinated rising of everyone else and its effect was not lost on Meheru, for she asked, “It’s over, isn’t it ?” Exercising my poise to the utmost, I assured her with smiling eyes, “Oh, yes. It’s over!”

In closing, I want to wish all of you reading this in a more or less timely fashion, “Happy New Year!” May all your embarrassing moments strengthen your determination to be his, and in your ear may you hear only Baba’s perfect tune.