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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

"You'll find Me in the garden"

Spring has sprung here in the Southern hemisphere and everywhere in the garden buds are ready to burst into bloom. It’s a wonderful time of year with the promise of warmer days ahead and all the new growth in the garden giving a lush feel to the landscape.

My love of gardening has come late in life and my dream is to have a garden of colourful flowers that can be picked for bouquets to beautify Baba’s room at Meher House. Baba’s beloved Mehera and the women Mandali would always beautify His Places and especially His photos with flowers, and Francis Brabazon in one of his early letters directed us, for any meetings or celebrations, to fill the room with ‘lots of flowers.’

My husband Ross and I live in the weatherboard cottage next door to Meher House that was built for my paternal grandparents. When Meher Baba visited in 1956, it was a double garage being used during His visit as a makeshift kitchen. And in 1958 when He visited Meher House for the day it housed the car that He was driven in while in Sydney. We are fortunate that on both visits He came into this space that is now our home – in 1956 it was to inspect the kitchen facilities, and in 1958 it was to inspect the car that was to be used for the drive back to the airport.

We have kept the house relatively small but the yard is large. It’s mostly rock shelves and the soil is sandy and porous but my grandparents were keen gardeners and developed wonderful terraced gardens including a vegetable patch. Ross and I, sadly, did not maintain these, finding the time and energy required was not possible while raising a family. It was not until recent years that we started revitalising the garden, keen to have it looking beautiful and inspired by the beauty of Mehera’s garden at Meherazad which she so lovingly created and maintained for her Beloved Baba.

But gardening here at Meher House has proved difficult. The soil is poor and it needs a lot of work to make it rich enough to grow flowers and especially roses. Rainfall can be scarce at times and with global warming the temperatures in recent years have increased. And even more frustratingly, weeds don’t seem to mind these conditions and have no trouble establishing themselves and multiplying happily. So frequent weeding and clearing is required, followed by the addition of composted material and regular watering. But Baba seemed to like dry and arid places that His lovers would have to strive to make beautiful, once saying to Mehera about the garden at Meherazad: “it is so much more beautiful because of the effort you have had to put into creating it. . . “

I never got to talk personally to Mehera about gardening, but I love the stories she used to tell about the garden and growing things. She told us Baba loved roses and marigolds. And about marigolds, He said, “they are beautiful, so simple and sweet.” Baba’s fondness for such a simple, unassuming flower reminds me of the time I was in India shortly after Mehera went to Baba. Mani was reminiscing with me about Mehera, and I don’t know how it came up, but she ended by giving me a dried flower to keep which she said was one of Baba’s favourite flowers. I was so touched, because it was such a simple flower, a wildflower from the field outside the compound, nothing fancy overblown, and somehow it seemed to me to stand for the beautiful simplicity of Baba’s Love.

Working in the garden helps me feel Baba’s Presence and it reminds me of a dream my paternal grandmother had in which Baba told her: “you’ll find Me in the garden.” I picture Baba walking here with Mehera and it inspires me to make sure it is maintained as beautifully as possible. In Mehera-MeherMehera talks about working in the garden: “During the day, I will be working in the garden, absorbed in my work. Sometimes, I stop and think, ‘Baba, I love you. Are you with me, Baba? Be with me.’ In your work, you get absorbed but you should stop and remember Baba and then go back to work.”

In researching for this column, I did a search for ‘garden’ in Mehera-Meher and was amazed at just how many references came up – the women seemed often to be either creating gardens whenever Baba stayed for a period of time, visiting gardens either public or private wherever they traveled, and in later years, collecting interesting plants to bring back to Meherazad. Mehera recalls how some of these plants survived and some did not. It seems with gardening (as with life) it is trial and error. You can’t get too attached to a plant flourishing as it may not survive. And yet sometimes plants survive against the odds and it’s such a joyful surprise.

But my favourite garden story from Mehera, which I always remember when feeling frustrated by the difficulties in gardening at Meher House (which is often), highlights the wisdom that is in even the simplest things Baba said and did. As Mehera tells it in Mehera-Meher, one time she was complaining to Baba about how poor the soil is at Meherazad and how hard they have to work to grow the beautiful bright flowers Baba loved. But Baba told her, “Because the soil is poor, you have to work hard, with so much care and love; then the flowers and plants that come up are special. What’s the use if it is good soil, if you plant seeds, water them a little, and they grow easily by themselves? I wouldn’t have appreciated that as much. This is how I like it. I appreciate the garden because of your efforts.”

When telling this story Mehera then added: “So Baba wants that (of us) ­– to work hard and then get results. That is what He appreciates. It isn’t easy. Baba always had a ready answer. From that time though, I didn’t complain to Baba that we have poor soil in the compound.” 

Published 2016.