Meher Baba Bhakti
Meher Baba's Lovers
and the Path of Devotion

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Paintings by Laurie Blum

Bill Gannett
Lyn Ott

Laurie was born in New York City in 1953. Influenced by an artistic environment and her Russian cultural heritage, she followed her quest for beauty. She studied art at the High School of Art & Design in New York, the Philadelphia College of Art, The New York Studio School of Painting, Drawing and Sculpture, and the Laney College of California State University.

From the time she was a child, Laurie had vivd experiences of an inner world of beauty. Music, dance, colors and nature, all combined in her wanderings and interactions within her "inner garden".
"I envisioned beautiful magical birds and avidly frequented and lost myself in the woods and flower gardens of my childhood dwellings."

Later on Laurie found "Inward Beauty" discussed in chapter 10 of Jiddu Krishnamurti's book Think on These Things and it resonated with her heart's calling. At the age of 19, she was given Nizami's book "Leyli and Majnun",
a poetic story about an ill-fated love, full of amazing Persian Miniatures.
Inspired by Nizami's beautiful story, she began to paint about the Lover and the Beloved. She was also told that it was said by Meher Baba that Leyli and Majnun illustrated the highest human love that became divine Love. While in California that year, she became interested in spiritual master Meher Baba.

Laurie's inner quest brought her to India in 1973 where she met Meher Baba's most devoted disciple, Mehera J. Irani, who became her lifelong friend and inspiration. From Mehera she learned how the melodious and expressive Persian language creates imagery that no other language can create. This has to do with the symbols that relate to or convey the feeling from inner unconscious mind. For the next three years she studied Persian, whose sublime vocabulary created and matched the living imagery inside her.

"Mehera made me understand that I was painting for God
and not for the world."

In 2004, Laurie was given the honor by the Shiraz Cultural Institute to be the first painter to exhibit her work at the Tomb Shrine of Hafez in Shiraz, Iran, "the City of Flowers and Nightingales". She was also given the opportunity to paint in the Garden of Paradise (Bagh-e-Eram- part of Shiraz University), at Hafez's Tomb Shrine and Garden and at Sa'adi's Tomb Shrine and Garden.

"To penetrate into the essence of all being and significance and to release the fragrance of that inner attainment for the guidance and benefit of others - by expressing, in the world of forms, truth, love, purity, and beauty-this is the sole game that has intrinsic and absolute worth. All other happenings, incidents, and attainments in themselves can have no lasting importance."
- Meher Baba

Paintings by Laurie Blum appear here by her permission

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