Perfect Masters of Meher Baba
Meher Baba said of the five Perfect Masters:
Meher Baba said of the five Perfect Masters:
“The five greatest thieves of the world are the five living Perfect Masters of their time. They often steal the hearts of people, and periodically they also steal me and bring me down amongst you. Again and again, I must become what I am, and each time is due to the five Perfect Masters. Wherever I may incarnate [Persia, India, Israel, or Arabia] at whatever time, it will always be due to those five.
I never come of my own wish. It is always the five Perfect Masters who bring me down [into human form] in each Avataric period. Those five hold the key to all of creation, which contains an infinite number of universes.
Man can become God, and men who become God can become Perfect Masters. It is because of the five Perfect Masters that I appear on earth as a man. They fetch me down, and I experience myself as everything, and so I tell you that I am God. I am everything.
The state of God-Realization, Infinite Knowledge, Power, and Bliss cannot be described. It can only be known to those who achieve that supreme experience of the conscious state of God. God-Realization is beyond the domain of the mind. The five Perfect Masters are the five persons of their age who not only become God but, after achieving God-Realization, also come down to the ordinary normal consciousness of man. Thus they possess simultaneously God-consciousness plus mental, subtle, and gross consciousness. The world is never without the five persons who are God-Conscious, who are Perfect Masters.
In spite of appearing as five different persons, they are and always remain one God, as each one has exactly the same supreme experience of God-consciousness. Nevertheless, in their external relations with the world, each shows a different personality, with his or her characteristic traits, nature, habits, and ways of dealing with people.
All the five Perfect Masters, Babajan, Narayan Maharaj, Tajuddin Baba, Sai Baba, and Upasni Maharaj put together mean ME — THE AVATAR.
All five of these Perfect Masters have brought me down, and all that I have become is due to these five. I am made of all the attributes of all five of these Masters, and my Avataric state comprises the five states of these five Perfect Masters. Therefore, the qualities of all five are in me.” — Meher Baba –
Hazrat Babajan, The Emperor
“It is I who have created all! I am the source of everything in creation!”
Hazrat Babajan’s given name was Gool Rukh. She was born to a royal Muslim family of Baluchistan in northern India between 1790 and 1800. Her name truly befitted her; Gool Rukh means “like a rose” or “with cheeks like roses.”
As Merwan (Meher Baba) rode by Babajan one day in May of 1913, he happened to glance at Babajan who, at that very moment, looked at him — and with a nod of her head beckoned him to her. Merwan could not disregard her; at once he got off his bicycle and walked over to her. Their eyes met, and Merwan could sense the old woman was extremely happy to see him.
Babajan was eagerly awaiting him, and as Merwan approached her, he felt as if he was magnetically drawn to her eyes. Babajan then stood up with her arms spread wide. The ancient woman embraced Merwan with the fervor of a mother finding her lost son. Tears started streaming down her wrinkled cheeks as she repeated, “Mera pyara beta… Mera pyara beta” — “My beloved son!”
Our Age had waited for her beloved son to come to her! Finally, he had come, and the tears of our Age were the tears of Babajan! At this most touching scene, the echo of her loving cry, “My beloved son,” was eventually to affect the innermost recesses of every heart. Those who witnessed this incident were undoubtedly deeply moved.
Merwan was speechless and stood motionless like a statue in front of the ancient woman. From the moment of her embrace, Merwan felt as if an electric current was passing through his body, sending impulses from his head to his toes. What he then experienced is indescribable — his individual consciousness was merging with the Ocean of bliss! Although Merwan was dazzled by the effect of the luster Babajan’s embrace gave, he maintained some consciousness of the environment and walked home, leaving his bicycle behind. Though inwardly his total being was profoundly affected, outwardly he appeared, for the most part, normal.
Every evening without fail, Merwan would go to Babajan. When Babajan and Merwan would sit together under her tree, they seldom spoke. One night during January 1914, as Merwan was about to leave, he kissed Babajan’s hands, and she, in turn, held his face in her hands. The time had come. The moment our Age had been waiting for had arrived. As she held his face, Babajan looked into Merwan’s eyes with all her love and kissed him on the forehead. Turning to her followers nearby, she pointed her little finger at the dazed Merwan and declared, “This is my beloved son… He will one day shake the world, and all humanity will be benefited by him.”
One afternoon, Merwan boarded a train. He had bought a ticket to Raichur in the south of India, but the sound of the Song – the divine voice within – compelled him to get off the train at the remote village of Kedgaon, just fifty kilometers from Poona. There he inquired as to the whereabouts of Narayan Maharaj’s ashram and walked seven miles from the railway station to the Sadguru’s headquarters. During his walk, he became dazed.
Merwan crossed a small stream and entered the grounds through a large gate, passing by the temple dedicated to Dattatrey. He then inquired, “Where is Narayan Maharaj?”
“He is at his palace. Darshan is being held. Go now, Narayan is giving his blessings,” a caretaker replied.
A large crowd was in the palace, and Narayan Maharaj, wearing a gold crown, was seated on the silver throne of Dattatrey. Upon seeing Merwan, Narayan stopped the darshan and had all the people disperse. He came down from his throne and, taking Merwan by the hand, gently led him up a few steps to allow him to sit upon the throne. From his own shoulders, Narayan removed a flower garland, placed it around Merwan’s neck, and called for mango juice, which was given to Merwan to drink. Merwan and Narayan then talked together for a while, though what they conversed about is not known.
This was a time when our Age had the opportunity to observe one of the five Perfect Masters’ profound love for Merwan. If our Age knew how deep was the love of each Perfect Master for Merwan, its heart could not contain the joy – the bliss. Narayan Maharaj’s love for Merwan was truly something great and holy.
Over the years, thousands flocked to Sai Baba — many with material gain on their minds. Sometimes Sai Baba would ask people for all of their money and by the end of the day, distribute it to the poor. Sai Baba once remarked about those who sought his blessing: “It is I who seek them out and bring them to me; they do not come by their own volition. Even though some may be hundreds of miles away, I draw them to me like sparrows with strings tied to their feet.”
Babajan often repeated to Merwan, “My son, the treasure which you seek and the key to that treasure are not with me! I am not the one to give it to you. The treasure is yours — it is for you alone — there is no doubt about that, the treasure is yours! But my son, you must have the key … You must take the key!”
Babajan would always speak about this in a cryptic fashion — it seemed unclear what she meant. Then one night she spoke in a very clear manner, “the treasure is yours to have now! The key is there, go to Shirdi, my son. There is a Sai — a holy one there … Go and see the Sai. See if he will give you the key now … Take the key from Sai!”
After a difficult journey to Shirdi, the villagers there refused to allow Merwan to see Sai Baba. Merwan spent the night under a tree and the following day Sai Baba sent for Merwan.
Sai Baba was then seventy-seven years old, white-bearded with a head of snow-white hair, dressed in a white kafni gown. Khodu who was with Merwan, nervously walked up and bowed at Sai Baba’s feet, and when he did, the old fakir slapped him on the back so hard that it knocked the breath out of him! Khodu was startled, and then Sai Baba inquired, “Who is your friend? What does he want?”
“His name is Merwan … Merwan Sheriar Irani; he is very devotional and eagerly desires your darshan, holy one. Babajan, in Poona, has told us about you, Sai.”
The old fakir’s eyes were aflame. “Oh, no!” Sai Baba suddenly cried. “No, I won’t … I won’t allow him to see me! I won’t let him come!” The old fakir’s eyes then gazed upon Khodu, and he said, “Give me all your money, all of it!” Khodu did, then Sai Baba said, “Now go and tell your friend I won’t see him, he cannot come to me!”
Khodu left and reported to Merwan, who shook his head and said, “No!” Let us just wait. I must see him, and I will.”
Later, Sai Baba was on his way after performing his Lendi in a field with a large procession following, a band playing, and the atmosphere very joyful though at the same time solemn with reverence. Contrary to what Khodu had said, Sai Baba now appeared to be in a very good mood. As Sai Baba was about to pass him, Merwan stretched himself full length on the ground in front of his feet. Seeing him in the Shashtang Namaskar — bowing at full length to the Master’s feet — in a deep, deep voice as if rising from the very depths of the ocean, Sai Baba uttered one majestic word, the Mohammedan name for Lord Vishnu, “PARVARDIGAR!” — meaning GOD-THE-ALMIGHTY-SUSTAINER! Sai Baba’s eyes were lustrous with universes shining out of them as he conveyed this holy word! The old fakir’s lustrous eyes were sending a message to Merwan but to the ignorant, his word was inexplicable. For at the instant when Sai Baba had spoken, Merwan had become all-powerful — Sai Baba had given him infinite power!
One day,during 1915, an exceptional looking individual in his early twenties,accompanied by a friend, came to see Tajuddin Baba who was holding darshan at Vaki Sharif. As that handsome youth entered the room, Tajuddin stood up and their eyes met. No one in the crowd kew the hidden message or inner communication their glances conveyed. Tajuddin then approached the youth, and taking some roses in his hand, waved them like a wand mysteriously over the stranger’s head and face. After this, the stranger and his companion bowed to the Qutub and then left.
This young man was no stranger to Tajuddin Baba, however. He was the same youth kissed by Babajan and whom Narayan Maharaj had royally greeted. The young man indeed brought good news to Tajuddin yhat day — news that he was preparing to accept the spirtual charge from the Taj, assuming the crown of creation! Later this man was always refered to by Tajuddin as “the Heavenly Rose.” In return, that young man would always later refer to him as “Taj” — the Crown.
Only Sai Baba knew who he really was: “There was no one else like him. His value only God knew. His merit was such that if the whole world was put on one side and he on the other, he would be greater!”
Although his birth was normal, his life was not. The boy was born in a Hindu-Brahmin family of priests in the village of Satana, India, in the district of Nasik on May 15th, 1870. The boy hated school and barely managed to reach the third grade. He was a problem to his parents, but his grandfather liked him very much and taught him the Shastras (Brahmanic scriptures), which he learned with keen interest, although he despised his school lessons, as well as lessons from the temple priests.
Sadguru Narayan Maharaj was visiting Nagpur and Kashinath was very drawn to have his darshan. The program had not yet begun and many people were waiting in line. Kashinath joined them, but when darshan was about to begin, Narayan Maharaj beckoned one of his disciples to bring Kashinath to him.
Kashinath fell at Narayan Maharaj’s feet. After he rose, Narayan removed a garland from his neck and put it around Kashinath before the waiting congregation of thousands. Kashinath accepted the garland as a gift of Narayan’s grace and then quietly slipped away from the crowd.
Had the Singer been found? Kashinath, however, had not seen His face. Kashinath had felt the Singer’s touch, but the echo of the Song became louder. It was years later that Sai Baba and Narayan Maharaj gave Upasni Maharaj the key and he became a Perfect Master.
It was during December 1915 that the young Zoroastrian to whom Sai Baba had uttered “PARVARDIGAR,” wandered in a dazed state to the Kandoba temple. Upasni Maharaj had again been fasting and was reduced to a skeleton. He was naked, sitting outside on the steps of the temple as the young man slowly walked forward with folded hands. Looking directly at him, Upasni picked up a stone, stood up, and threw it at the young man, striking him on the forehead with such force that the wound bled.
Was Upasni Maharaj angry with this young man? No! His face had a sweet victorious smile and the young man’s bloody face did too? Smiles of victory were on both their faces.
Upasni revealed to the young man his own divine identity of being the Ancient One!
Information on this page was compiled from:
Lord Meher, The Biography of the Avatar of the Age, Meher Baba, Volume One 1894-1922, by Bhau Kalchuri, © 1980 Lawrence Reiter
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