Book Two

"Once when speaking on the subject of sanskaras, Baba remarked that small children, owing to their innocence, were out of the influence of sanskaras, and were therefore susceptible to spiritual training, and could be easily led to the Path."

Charles Purdom, PM p118 (1927)

"Baba likened the Path to God to four courses of a schooling, i.e. levels of education:

Primary: Observing ceremonies and the dry drills of religious injunctions.

Matriculation: Service of humanity without selfish considerations.

B.A.: Repetition of the Almighty's name with love.

M.A.: The service of a Sadguru by following his orders to the letter in all matters."

Francis Brabazon,
SW p281-282 (May? 1926)

"Baba explained that the kind of education given the boys in his school would help effect the political salvation of India. Thus, besides the spiritual advancement that the country would experience, it would also be benefited materially.

" 'By the time' Baba said, 'that the boys have completed the course, they will no longer have any bias or prejudice towards the religion of others, as people do now, causing so much strife and slaughter. Leaders such as Lala Lajpatrai, who are great orators in the cause of nationalism, totally lack an inborn toleration. But our boys, in whom the seeds of hatred and fanaticism will have been destroyed, and a real toleration created, will teach a universal religion for all.' "

Francis Brabazon,
SW p366 (April? 1927, Meherabad)

"This school is not like the schools you find in the world. Such worldly institutions of learning are being run by the government, municipality, or charitable trusts. The object of Meher Ashram is quite different -- for spiritual education. And to serve that purpose, the more troubles you undergo and the more you suffer, the more you will benefit. Do your duty faithfully and conscientiously, and put it above everything else. Then you will please me.

"Neither praise nor blame should distract you from the path of your duty. Leave aside all other considerations but your appointed duty. If your conscience tells you that you have discharged your duty properly, that is enough. Your conscience is the best judge. It is human to err, and there must be mistakes. You can only do your best. Always be on time. Look after your work personally, and do not leave anything to others. Even if mistakes happen, they will be overlooked and pardoned. If I scold you harshly about such mistakes, do not take it to heart."

Meher Baba, 15 April 1927,
Meherabad, LM3 p931,
also PMp118 and SW p 369-370

Three teachers in Meher Baba's school, Pandoba, Phadke and Ramakrishna Gite had an argument about the value of education. Pandoba felt that education had spoiled India's family traditions and hereditary trades (in which, for instance, the son of a tailor becomes a tailor), and brought about great misery for the people. Gite was in favor of education, saying 'Even a street-sweeper would sweep better if he were educated.' Baba explained,

"Education, however faulty and incompetent, is always better than ignorance. If not always beneficial financially, it brings about a lot of good to one mentally. It is a step further in human advancement, betterment and progress. Under all circumstances, and in any place, I would declare and repeat that education is good and does good. A system may be defective, even bad. Yet you must not blame the one for the other, the education for the system."

2 June 1927, Meherabad, SW p390
Another version: LM3 p943

"You have no idea what sort of teaching will be imparted here. Such education cannot be given in any other school on earth, and those boys who study here are truly fortunate."

Meher Baba, 20 July 1927, Meherabad,
to his brother Adi, LM3 p953

"Childhood is the ideal period of life in which to take an interest in spirituality. The impressions received at a young age become deeply ingrained.

"Divine beauty, grandeur and bliss should always be impressed upon children, so much so as to fire their imaginations to the highest pitch about God and his greatness.

"The boys' enthusiasm for God, however wild, should never be curbed. On the contrary, the best attempts should always be made to create in the boys a deep-rooted longing for divine upliftment. Never mind if all the boys go mad with uncontrollable enthusiasm and impulses about spiritual matters. The aim of this institution is more to create divine mad ones than academic degrees. And I prefer the former to the latter.

Of course, all the boys could not be expected to become saints like Dhruva and Pralhad, but certainly some of them will take to the spiritual life in the later period of their lives. The rest will also follow after some lifetimes, if not earlier. The result of the present training will fructify in the end in all cases. Even temporary impulses and sparks of enthusiasm about God-realisation hold some result. It is like a cash balance in one's account in the bank, which is utilised beneficially at some time or other in connection with one's spiritual advancement.

"Adults rarely attain lasting enthusiasm or longing. When I give a fascinating discourse or logical explanation about divine grandeur or spiritual bliss, even adults certainly become fired up with a longing to search for Truth and to fathom the secrets of the universe. But unhappily, their ardor and enthusiasm do not last long. The impulse of the moment rises and falls quickly in the absence of instant results.

"However, if a man were to advance toward Truth, experiencing different aspects and novelties of the Path, his enthusiasm would remain pitched at the same level.

"Seeing extraordinary sights or having extraordinary experiences maintains the longing for Truth, but puts great obstacles in front of real advancement. A strong tea provides a very good stimulant to the tired nerves, but it causes no real improvement in health. On the contrary, the general health is usually undermined with strong stimulants. Therefore a person should not strive after the novelties, lights and powers of the Path, which are many. The goal of life, the realisation of Truth, should always be the only longing and desire of anyone.

"But even the temporary impulses of adults are not to be considered insignificant. However small or little the attempt in connection with finding the Truth, and whether physical or mental, it forms a valuable asset. The varying impressions of sin and virtue are spent, but spiritual impressions are not, and always remain to one's credit -- ever increasing, but never decreasing. Hence, even the best attempts should be made for the temporary impulses to be expressed also. A few stand the chance of contracting permanent longing through chance contemplations, in spite of their advanced age. Enthusiasm, inner impulses, and even temporary longings are to be welcomed as they often prove to be stepping stones to real love."

Meher Baba, 26 November 1927,
Meherabad, LM3 p982-983

In the Spring of 1928 Meher Baba sent Rustom Irani to England, ostensibly to recruit boys for his school. This advertisement was placed in an English publication, under a photograph of Meher Baba:


There is much talk about Brotherhood, but not many attempts to make it practical have hitherto been made. An unique effort in this direction is now being made in India by Meherbaba, an Indian teacher, whose reputation for wisdom and sanctity is well known throughout India. He has founded an institution, known as Meherashram, in Ahmednagar, not far from Poona. Admission to this institution is free to boys, aged 10-16. Board, education, medical attention, and travelling expenses are all provided entirely free of charge for a period of 2 years. Boys of all races and creeds are welcome. There are already 80 boys at Meherashram.

Yet Meherashram should not be considered as a charitable boarding school. It is open to rich and poor alike. Religious scruples are strictly respected. No attempt at conversion is made, but the universal truths underlying all religions are taught, together with full secondary education. A staff of competent teachers is retained.

Parents who are interested should communicate with me immediately as a party of boys conducted by a Public School man will leave very shortly. A few selected boys will be taken.

38, Ashland Park Villas, W. 12.

Charles Purdom wrote:

"... One of Baba's disciples, Rustom K. S. Irani, was sent to England to endeavour to get Western boys to enter the school; but he encountered unexpected difficulties, for no one could understand why free education in India should be offered to English children, and when these difficulties arose Baba sent him a cable telling him to return at once.

"The outcome of this visit was, however, that three English people who had come into contact with Rustom set out for India to stay with Baba, and arrived at Meherabad in June, where they remained, living under Baba's direction, until January 2nd of next year."

PM p125

The three English people were Meredith and Margaret Starr and Margaret's sister Esther Ross. They came to stay at Baba's ashram at Toka on June 30, 1928.

Bhau Kalchuri wrote:

"... Meanwhile in England, Rustom tried his best to bring a few British boys to Meher Ashram, but failed. As he was preparing to sail to America, Baba cabled him on April 16th,

'Don't worry. Don't bring boys. Return.'

"No sooner had Rustom received this telegram than some of the British parents he had contacted agreed to send their sons with him back to India. But now, according to Baba's order, Rustom could not take them. He left his address with them, assuring them he would write soon...

"On his return to Meherabad at the end of April, Rustom received Baba's permission to send for the boys from England, and he made all the necessary arrangements for their voyage. However the British government refused to allow the boys to emigrate, and the plan was dropped."

LM3 p1038-1039

Meher Baba visited the Dastur Parsi High School in Nasik, which was located in a beautiful setting. Baba liked the school, and suggested to the Zoroastrian priest in charge that the boys be given spiritual training. The priest was indignant, and told Baba that he was giving religious instruction according to Zoroastrian custom. Baba explained to the Mandali with him:

"Intellectual training itself is not sufficient. I know what sort of instruction these priests give, as I myself studied in a Catholic school. Priests and dasturs are truly hard-headed. These days there is too much stress everywhere on religion. Religion is the root-cause of all strife, both internal and external, and is the cause of all wars in the world."

4 October 1928, LM3 p1100

Q. For your present position, do you owe any obligation to your school teachers and college professors?

Baba: What connection has education with Truth?

1930s? A p52

Meher Baba visited Kolhapur High School, a school for boys in Kolhapur, on February 25, 1930. The principal and vice-principal, Topkhane and Dixit, were Theosophists, and held Baba in reverence. Baba had a discourse read out on divine experience, love, grace, and the renunciation of the ego. Baba told Vinayak Karnataki, one of the students,

"Dedicate your life to this school by renouncing your self. But let there not be even a thought that you are doing this or that for others. Only then will the ego-mind, the I, gradually diminish. Appear for the Bachelor of Science examination, and try to obtain the degree, but do not feel glad if you pass or disappointed if you fail. Success and failure should be equal in your eyes. Supposing you pass: do not think, 'Now that I've passed, I will be able to render better service than if I had failed.' This is not desirable. The I must not be there. There should not be ambition. Except the existence of bliss, there is nothing else anywhere in creation."

Baba then asked Vinayak what he was thinking. Vinayak replied, 'I want to get a Master's Degree in college. My parents have repeatedly asked me to do this.'

Baba smiled and dictated, 'Very good. But will you invite me to this school again after you are so highly educated?'

Vinayak: Won't you come uninvited, Baba?

Baba: Since you ask that, I will personally come for you next time.

Baba was asked by the staff of the school to visit them again after he went to Madras. Baba said he would come if he could, and told them,

"In this Path, the heart counts more than the head. If both are good, that is best. But the heart should predominate."

Vinayak Karnataki later became a famous Indian actor.

LM4 p1271-1272
and fn, also MMe 3:1 p81

Meher Baba visited the school again on April 13th. At the request of Topkhane and Dixit, he planted a mango tree on the school's grounds. Baba gave the boys a discourse on meditation and the purpose of creation. Afterward, he told a boy to look after the tree, and 'said',

"As the tree grows and selflessly gives out its fruit to others, so also should you grow in moral and spiritual greatness, and then selflessly serve others who are in need."

Baba played cricket and field hockey with the boys, and told some visiting members of the Indian National Congress:

"With children I am a child. With the old I am old. With women I am a woman; with men a man. With the rich I am rich, and with the poor I am poor. Despite all this, I love children most as they have no desires. I enjoy playing with them, and my playing with them makes them drink wine (feel love), which they can drink more of while playing, and feel great happiness."

Baba returned to the school May 4th and 5th, and, as Bhau Kalchuri wrote, "For two days Baba spent much time instructing the teachers concerning their conduct in running the school and the boy's education. On on occasion there was a bhajan (devotional music) program."

(LM4 p1305 - 1307)

"The form of service that a Montessori school takes has a practical value, if one's service is rendered selflessly. It is an important task, as it deals with the infant's nature in the prime of its development.

"The children's carefree hearts and restless pranks reflect qualities which are divine, and they are blissful in their innocence.

"The task is to see how far you can make use of this divinity in man, expressed through the child-God.

"A little patience, a little kindness, infinite understanding and sweet love are the only things by which the teachers can repay for having received the usefulness of human service at its purest.

"My blessings to all those who are genuinely responsible for having this school opened, as much as to the children who will attend it."

Meher Baba, 18 October 1942,
message for the opening of a
Montessori school, LM8 p2820

On February 3, 1954, Meher Baba visited and opened a junior high school boading-house in Jarakhar, Hamirpur, that had been named after him. He cut a string of flowers tied across the door, sat down inside, and the Mandali were served tea and refreshments. Baba said,

'I feel happy today because of what my dear Shripat Sahai said about the boys school and hostel, and I wish that along with ordinary education, students here should also learn to love God, who is the only reality. I give my blessings to them for this, and also my love and blessings to you all.'

LM12 p4263-4264

At a gathering a the Akhand Junior High School in Gauhari, Hamirpur, on February 9, 1954, Baba said,

'When the fully grown, fully conscious man becomes childlike, desireless and lustless, he comes nearer to God.

When I am among children, I feel myself to be a child. When I am among the poor, I feel no one is poorer than me. When I am among rich and influential people, I feel I am emperor of all.

For you students, two things are necessary: honesty and humility. By humility, I do not mean modesty, but that humility which spreads greatness. So if you students realise this much, then the purpose of my being among you is served. I give my blessings to you all.

LM12 p4280

In late February, 1954, Meher Baba visited the Gurukul Hostel, and played marbles with the boys there. Then he asked them, 'Who among you is the best singer?' Several children sang, and Baba accompanied them on a drum which he hung around his neck. Afterward, he told them:

"Be honest. Never tell lies. Whatever happens, never tell lies. In this life I too was once like you, a child. Now I am God. So you also can be advanced in this spiritual Path if you love me.

"Respect your teachers, your principal. Do your studies. Do your studies, but every day, at least once, remember me. Then my nazar will be on you all. And my nazar being on you means I will help you in every way -- but be honest.

"Who would do as I have asked?"

Most of the boys raised their hands. Baba threw apples for them to catch, looking in one direction and throwing the apple in another, to surprise them.

Meher Baba, 28 February 1954,
to boys at Gurukula school,
Rajamundry, Andhra, AD p91
and LM12 p4336

"Literacy is not education, and education is not culture. And all these together do not constitute dnyan or gnosis.* This stands in a class by itself, independent of any concomitant factors. Illiteracy and ignorance invite exploitation, but literacy can also become a willing tool in the hands of those who exploit. Education devoid of culture is inherently destructive, although on the surface it seems to represent progress.

"Since all types of people have claimed that their greatness constitutes culture, the word has become indefinite in the minds of the public. True culture is the result of spiritual values assimilated into life. Therefore you must keep before you the ideal of that spiritual culture which, once developed, imparts life and beauty to all undertakings - educational, technical, industrial, social, moral and political - and pierces through their differences to produce unity. This results in the development of the highest character in the life of a nation or individual."

Meher Baba, before 1956, part of a message to students, artists,
social workers and public institution servants, LH p180-181
*dnyan, gnosis, irfan = knowledge by experience of the higher planes,
particularly the fifth, sixth and seventh planes.

"Whether you like it or not, you must soon grow up and cease being childish. More and more you must enjoy letting your teachers teach you and your elders lead you while you are growing into men and women. Unless you are willing to learn and ready to obey, they cannot help you as they would like to do."

Meher Baba, before 1956, part of
a message to children, LH p179

"Do not balk at the discipline given by your parents and teachers. Discipline in small ways leads to the greater necessary discipline of self.

"Do not try to conquer others. Conquer yourself, and you will have conquered the world.

"The simplest way to do this is to love God."

Meher Baba,
before 1956? NW p97

The Principal of St. Vincent's High School in Poona wrote a letter to Meher Baba, who had attended the school as a teenager. He told Baba that he was happy that Rustom and Sohrab, who were the twin sons of Baba's brother Behram and his wife Perin, were attending the school. Baba dictated the following, which was sent to the Principal:

'My nephews Rustom and Sohrab should learn to think well of others, see good in others, make others happy, tell the truth, shun all hypocrisy, and learn to love God. This is true education. All other education is of little use. Those who educate themselves as above are my real relatives.'

2 May 1959
The Love Street Lamppost
January-March 1998, p.14

"Schools help sincere students to equip themselves with knowledge and to become worthy citizens of society. And those students are wise who take full advantage of educational institutions and their facilities.

"But this knowledge is not the be-all and end-all of learning. And there comes a time when one longs to reach the source of knowledge.

"The journey to this source can only be undertaken when one learns to love in all simplicity and honesty the one whom the pride of intellect veils.

"When mind soars in pursuit of the things conceived in space, it pursues emptiness. But when man dives deep within himself, he experiences the fullness of existence."

Meher Baba, 1960s? India, IS p43

"It is good to excel in whatever one takes up, so long as with excellence there is a feeling of humility; for this leads to love of God, and to love God as he should be loved is the best excellence. I give you my blessing that one day each of you may have that love."

Meher Baba, 1960s,
to the Poona District
Cricket Association, IS p46

Index - Book Two

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