(Sister of Adi K. Irani)
Dolly was the daughter of Kaikhushru Irani and Gulmai and devoted to Meher Baba since child hood. She used to cook food for school children at Meherabad
Some of her life time incidents associated with Meher Baba are recorded below:
In 1922, Baba said to Gulmai, “Give Me your son, Adi, and your daughter, Dolly. I want them free for My own purposes. Fulfill your parental responsibility by arranging (your other son) Rustom’s marriage soon. Later arrange (your daughter) Piroja’s marriage.” Gulmai accepted His wish and, without consulting her husband, Kaikhushru, she gave her promise that Adi and Dolly belonged to Him. She could not deny His request. The spiritual mother is she who does not care what others do or say, and never hesitates in fulfilling the Beloved’s slightest wish. Because of her love for Baba, Gulmai’s relatives were to harass her terribly, but she always remained staunch in her faith in Baba.
Surrounded by His women disciples, Baba would relax and sing bhajans with them or request that they tell Him humorous stories. Gulmai’s daughters, Piroja and Dolly, would come to visit with their mother, and Dolly, later joined the women mandali at Meherabad.
On 15th May 1925, the rice was found to be a bit undercooked, so Baba scolded Dolly: “If the children had eaten this improperly cooked rice, they would have fallen ill and their studies would have suffered. Do you have any love for these children? Are you trying to make them sick?”
Dolly protested that the rice was not undercooked. At this, Baba gave her a hard slap and then slapped Himself just as hard. Dolly did not feel disturbed about being slapped, but was shocked by Baba striking Himself. Tears welled up in her eyes, but Baba embraced her and told her not to think about it.
The women mandali living in Nasik, Dolly and others returned to Ahmednagar before Baba left for Kashmir. (She later rejoined the group.)
When Baba returned to Nasik, He met individually with each of the mandali. Telegrams had been sent to Baba, informing Him that Gulmai’s daughter Dolly, who was staying in Ahmednagar, had been feeling depressed during His absence and acting strangely. Baba went to Ahmednagar to see Dolly on 15th November 1933, and He spoke with her at length that afternoon. He noted down what Baba said, and Baba instructed that it be typed out and distributed for everyone to read.
You say you do not like to live. You feel tired of this life and this body. Unwelcome thoughts, bad thoughts, disturb you and make you unhappy. But life is thoughts, not body. The body is there when you are asleep. You do not feel the need to end your life then! The moment you are awake, you begin to think again. In actuality, nobody is satisfied with his lot. Nobody feels completely happy in this world. You know the great position and wealth of (so-and-so) yet when he saw Me, he told Me he was a very unhappy man.
Why should you be unhappy? You are neither too tall, nor too fat. You are quite healthy. You can read, you can write. Think of the poor creatures, the paralyzed, the lepers, the disabled. The paraplegic or leper knows that he is progressing toward a sure death and is likely to die in a worse state than he is in. Yet, there are thousands like these, silently dragging on through their days.
Why not compare your lot with the dumb illiterate millions in this country? You are most fortunate. You live with, and move in, the surroundings of a Master. What is there in the Himalayas and the jungles? Did you not see the picture Tarzan, which depicted the jungle life full of strife and struggles? In spite of having bad thoughts, you do not indulge in bad actions; therefore, what higher life can you live than this?
It is normal to have bad thoughts; so long as you do not interpret them into actions, you thereby get an opportunity to exercise control. If no thoughts assail you, then what is the difference between you and a stone which has no thoughts at all?
Cease the mental tension. Train your mind to pass over thoughts. Do not give countenance to them until such time that you can surrender the mind itself.
No one is doing it. When the mind is surrendered, there is no question of happiness and unhappiness. Because of the thoughts of the past lives, sanskaras are spent away. They come and go. Pay no attention to them. Mind is like a wound-up alarm clock. It will ring at the appointed time, but only so long as the winding is there. Let it ring and run its course, but take care to not wind it again by indulging in bad actions.
Still, if you want to die, die in My naad (infatuation) by holding on to Me firmly. There lies salvation. That is real dying. Worldly death is not the thing. However, nobody has so far “captured” Me. If one really catches Me, I try to free Myself. But so far, I have had no opportunity of freeing Myself. On the contrary, it is I who have been trying to catch hold of you people.
Remember this much: The whole world is nothing but a zero, and everything connected with it is without sum and substance. Mind is the universe. Mind is the man, the woman, the beast.
To console her, Baba brought Dolly to Nasik the next day along with Gulmai.
In year 1933, Gulmai’s daughter Dolly, who was living at Meherabad, became increasingly depressed. For a change, Baba wished for her to go to Karachi with Pilamai, but Dolly refused. She was kept isolated in Baba’s Jhopdi for several months on a diet of milk for some days until she calmed down.
On the 8th, 9th and 10th March 1937, Baba spent all day at Rahuri and returned to Meherabad each evening. Dolly was still in a disturbed state and would often refuse to eat. In the evening of the 9th, Baba fed her milk and jalebis (brought by Sarosh to celebrate the birth of a son the previous day).
On 7th October 1939, Dolly arrived Bangalore by in Adi’s car along with Gopia the cat. All the mandali came prepared to stay permanently in Bangalore, as Baba had announced he was establishing His headquarters there. Now, all of the Meherabad residents were with Baba in Bangalore.
In year 1940, Baba and the group arrived at Gersoppa at eleven in the night. It was so late they had trouble finding their rest house. They came to a dak bungalow and occupied it, because the ferry was closed. But after unpacking, they found out that the ferry would operate for them and they would be taken across the river to the correct bungalow that had been reserved for them. Baba appeared on the scene and informed the women to get ready to leave immediately. Hearing this, Adi Sr.’s sister Dolly angrily said, “You fool! Don’t you see that I am tired?” Baba had a good laugh at this. Dolly was mentally unbalanced and would uninhibitedly say anything to anybody -including Baba.
During 1954, every day, on Baba’s way to and from Meherabad, he would visit Khushru Quarters to meet Adi’s mother Gulmai, his sisters, Dolly and Piroja. Being estranged and living like a recluse, Dolly would not come out to see Baba, but she would return to her room after seeing Him from a distance, or Baba would visit with her in private.
On the way back to Meherazad, Baba stopped briefly at Khushru Quarters, expressly to see Gulmai’s daughter, Dolly, whom He embraced. He visited Gulmai’s room first and then sat for ten minutes in Adi’s office before departing.
The next morning, 12th August 1962, Baba again went to Khushru Quarters, where he had a brief discussion with Adi’s sisters, Dolly and Piroja.
References/Images from: Various Lord Meher volumes, discontinued website's ambprasarkendra & love-remembrances, images and dates, stories etc from respective copyright owners websites or publications used with permission - i.e. In His Service, Glow International, MeherBabaTravels, MSI and MNP Collections, from AvatarMeherBabaTrust, BelovedArchives websites and from various other website sources, Books, journal etc. More information where ever available with us like letter scans, stories etc are added. Kindly feel free to Contact us with any updates, photos or corrections etc.
- Adele Wolkin
- Anita de Caro
- Aranvaz Dadachanji
- Delia De Leon
- Dolly Irani
- Elizabeth C. Patterson
- Enid Corfe
- Gaimai Jessawala
- Gulamasi Satha
- Gulmai K Irani
- Gulnar Sukadwala
- Hedi Mertens
- Helen Dahm
- Irene Billo
- Ivy Duce
- Jane Barry Haynes
- Jean Adriel
- Jeanne Shaw
- Kakubai Deorukhkar
- Katie Irani
- Kharmen Masi
- Khorshed Irani
- Kitty Davy
- Manu Jessawala
- Margaret Craske
- Mary Backett
- Nadia Tolstoy
- Nonny Gayley
- Princess Norina Matchabelli
- Roshan Kerawala
- Shanta Devi
- Shirin Sheriar Iran