God completely and He will solve all difficulties. Faithfully leave
everything to Him and He will see to everything. Love God sincerely and
He will reveal Himself. And as you love, your heart must love so that
even your mind is not aware of it. As you love God wholeheartedly and
honestly, sacrificing everything at the altar of this supreme love, you
will realize the Beloved within you."
( Listen, Humanity, page 191)
April 2012 Vol. 5, Issue 2
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K. Hazra passed away on March 23, 2012, at the age of 81. He had been a
professor of English in Japalbur, India. To the Meher Baba world he
was the author of several books: Memoirs of a Zetetic, the story of his relationship with Meher Baba; a novel, Of Men and Meher Baba; and a collection of stories about Baba Lovers in India, Seekers of Love. Keith Gunn, our Northern California neighbor, was a co-author with Hazra on the last two of these books.
Memoirs of a Zetetic
was A.K. Hazra's first book and it immediately endeared him to the
hearts of those who follow Meher Baba. Hazra, or Amiya Kumar, as he is
called in the memoirs, possessed a powerful mind. He was very
suspicious, doubting by nature, mistrustful of conventional platitudes
and pat assurances of God's existence, and a true seeker. In Memoirs of a Zetetic
he makes numerous challenges to Meher Baba to prove his Godhood. His
story shows the exasperating limits of indulgence that God in human
form will go to, to convince the sincere skeptic of his Godhood. In
his discourse on faith, Meher Baba states, " True faith grounded in pure
intuition always remains an imperative that cannot be ultimately
reduced to the conclusions of rational intellect. It is not derived from
the limited intellect but is more fundamental and primary, with the
result that it cannot be silenced by any intellectual acrobatics. This
does not mean, however, that faith need at any stage be blind, in the
sense that it is not allowed to be examined by critical intellect. True
faith is a form of sight and not of blindness. It need not be afraid of
the free functioning of critical reason." Baba heard Hazra's bizarre
challenges and did not turn a deaf ear to them. Instead Baba chose
Hazra as an example of a skeptic developing true living faith and love.
Hazra's book is packed with lively, highly entertaining and
illuminating stories, truly unique to a white-hot seeker who was
fortunate to find the living Avatar, Meher Baba. -Ben Leet
|Baba's Birthday No. CA Celebration 2012|
Photo: Ben Leet
|Amiya Kumar Hazra Obituary by Keith Gunn|
Kumar Hazra died on the morning of March 23, 2012, of a collapsed lung
together with heart difficulties. His wife Gauri had pre-deceased him,
but he is survived by two sons, Meher and Aabir and a daughter
Mehernandini. She has two sons known in the family as Betoo and Titoo,
devoted to Amiya. In addition he had effectively adopted another son,
Sankalpa Shrivastava who, with his wife Meheru and their son lived at
the Hazra house. The Zetetic will be greatly missed by his family.
who liked to be called AKH, met Beloved Baba in December 1957. From
about six months prior to his first meeting, AKH was head over heels in
love with Baba. But prior to becoming Baba's lover he had spent about a
year actively challenging Baba to show His divinity. A typical challenge
was, "I feel like fish tonight. We're a thousand miles from the ocean,
but I'll believe in you if, when I come home, there is fish on the
table." This went on and on, Hazra's nature being to apply scientific
standards of proof to every event, from which he became known as a
Zetetic - one who questions.
Hazra's intimacy with Baba was such that Baba referred to him as "My
most disobedient son." It was Hazra of whom Baba said, "Amiya, you have
got a screw loose." Amiya replied, with all his heart, "Baba, you please
tighten my screw." Baba said, "How can I? When I see you my screw also
gets loosened." Such was their intimacy. This story and many others
appear in Memoirs of a Zetetic, AKH's autobiography, written in 1985.
a few dozen Westerners know what happened to him after that - because
his door was always open, many of us visited him in those years,
including Rick Chapman, Paul Liboiron, and Will David. Irwin Luck also visited him in the early 1970s and filmed his memoirs.
He wrote several books and a memoir of his times at Guruprasad with his
grandson Titoo as editor. In addition, there is a web site, www.trustMeher.org/zetetic that contains his correspondence with Baba with his commentary, as well as a wonderful unpublished story.
A more extensive version of this obituary will be published in an upcoming issue of The Love Street Breezes.
Hazra Story by Keith Gunn
|Hazra with neighbors|
Photo courtesy of Keith Gunn
I often used to visit
the Hazra family. Counting everything, I've spent over 100 days in
Jabalpur at their place. My ostensible purpose in going, at first, was
to work on books with Amiya Kumar Hazra (who died just this week). He
had written one book, Memoirs of a Zetetic, which I loved. It
is an autobiography of his life and how he fell in love with Meher Baba -
all the things he had done afterward to spread Baba's message of love
and truth. It's a charming book, once you get past the first 30 pages,
which were written in the style of Wordsworth, and were therefore a bit
tedious, I thought. I convinced him to abridge it, to get on to his
normal style, which was very readable, and together we brought out a
second edition. But, I was strongly reproached for doing so by Bal Natu
when he saw the finished product. Bal loved the archaic style of those
early pages. Oh well.
Eventually we worked on two others: Of Men and Meher Baba, a novel, and Seekers of Love,
a collection of stories by predominantly Hindi-speaking Baba lovers -
stories that hadn't been heard in the West. There is still some sales
volume for Seekers, which sells a few dozen a year.
All Amiya's stories used
to be told in bed. He would lie there, and I and my microphone and tape
recorder would lie next to him while he told his own stories or
translated the Seekers stories, which were transcribed in Hindi by his
grandson Titoo, and then read out to him so he could translate them into
English for the book. His eyes were never good, so it took this curious
method. And his health was bad, so it meant we had to do it all
There was one story in
particular that I heard him tell many times. He didn't tell it in public
unless I urged him to, because it cast his wife in not such a good
light. He had had a tumultuous marriage. It had been a great annoyance
to him, and he greatly wished he had heeded the advice Baba had given
him in this curious story. A much less well-told version exists in the
memoirs of Hoshang Bharucha; I've heard it both ways, and the facts are
On more than one
occasion, Amiya, in his late 20s, used to be invited to Guruprasad by
Baba, along with the usual collection of intimate men who visited Him -
Deshmukh and Bharucha, both married were there, and probably the usual
other suspects like Jimmy Mistry and Elcha Mistry (no relation). Amiya
remembers entering a room containing Baba and the other men, all of them
senior to him. Baba pointed at the other men, and addressed Amiya
directly. "Amiya look at these old men. They are all old warriors, while
you are young. They are all married men and they will try to convince
you of the joys of married life. It reminds me of a story. Once upon a
time, there were a group of boys, like these guys when they were
younger. There were a few older boys, and a youngest boy, like you. The
boys used to prowl around at night, looking for mischief. In their
prowling, they chanced upon the store of a sweetmeat seller. [A
sweetmeat seller makes candy.] In his lot, which was protected by
chicken wire, they saw a vat of malai. [Malai is an essential syrup from
which candy is made - also Malai Kofte, which is sold in some Indian
restaurants in the States, and also Rasmalai, a sweet]."
"One of the boys was
very clever and he found a length of tubing, hose, and with his
cleverness he was able to pass the hose through the chicken wire and
reach the vat of malai. Being the leader, he got to go first and drink
his fill of malai. After he was done, then the next largest boy also
drank and also expressed his satisfaction. But by the time the hose got
to you, there was none left, and you had nothing to content you. This
went on for several nights, and always you were left out."
Naturally the sweetmeat
vendor was upset to find that his malai was disappearing. He told his
friend that it must be some ghost who was stealing his malai. 'That I
don't know,' remarked the friend, 'but let's see what happens if you go
get some raw sewage, put it in the vat and cover it over with a thin
layer of malai.' The sweetmeat seller agreed, and they put their plan
"That night the boys
once again went for the malai. The eldest one took the first sip. 'Well,
he said, 'tonight I just don't feel like it. Let's give the young one a
chance.' Now you can imagine just what happened to the poor young boy
denied his malai for so long!" Amidst roars of laughter from the elder
men, Baba remarked offhandedly to Hazra, "So Amiya I tell you, these
guys will urge you to marry, but in the end it may be like malai for the
Amiya thought it was
just a funny story, and Baba hadn't conveyed a real suggestion. Later
that year, his mother began to pester him to get married. The reason
behind this is that mothers do everything for their sons, and pretty
soon it's too much and they want a wife to take over. Also, the Indian
tradition is that the new wife becomes the free servant of the mother
and is subjected to great overwork along with some abuse, the amount
varying according to personality, but it is a tradition, and not easily
mother told Baba that she wanted relief and she had found a suitable
wife for him. Amiya recalls Baba not agreeing very enthusiastically, but
not putting any barriers up, and in the end the thing happened.
Unfortunately for all concerned, the mother and the wife were at
swordspoints almost immediately. Hazra's wife was not going to take the
customary abuse lying down, and so there was no peace for him. He had a
daughter a year after the marriage, and the two women disagreed
violently about how to discipline the daughter, who was very naughty.
Hazra eventually complained to Baba, but it only went better when his
mother died. On top of that the wife wrote a letter to Baba. She said,
"Amiya is out till late at night at your meetings. Can't you give him
back to me by 10 PM? I'm lonely and frightened because our house is in
the middle of nowhere and I don't feel safe." Both aspects of her
complaint were true - Amiya's zeal at the time caused him to go to any
gathering to speak about Baba, sometimes not coming home till after
midnight, and their house was isolated (though today the same house is
in the middle of a teeming neighborhood).
Baba sent Amiya an order
to come home by 10 PM, which greatly annoyed him. Eventually, Amiya's
wife got the daughter married off to a fellow and moved in with them.
She and Amiya were polite but distant in the times that I knew her. So
that's the end of the story.
YOU HAVE TO BECOME GOD by Prof. A. K. Hazra
A man from the
mandali ran out from within the Guruprasad hall shouting "Amiyakumar -
who is Amiya Kumar?" I turned towards the man and told him that I bore
the name. "You are Amiya Kumar, are you? Well, leave the cup of tea and
rush inside the hall for Baba wants you." I left the cup untouched by my
lips and began hurrying after him. Not content with my speed he said,
"Don't walk but run for Baba has been asking about you all the time." I
thought to myself in surprise, "Well, it was hardly the fifth minute
since I had left the hall." Anyway as the man wanted me to run, I
scampered back to the hall and just at the entrance was met by another
tough-looking volunteer. He looked at me a bit sternly. "You are Amiya
Kumar from Bhopal, aren't you?"
"Yes, I am."
why did you leave the hall? You come all the way to be in Baba's
company and when He wants you, you are not there. You ought never to
have left His presence. Now go in and meet Him."....
really looked small and shrivelled up before the August presence in
front of me, beaming with a smile and a face so illuminated as if
someone was invisibly focussing a torch on His face. Suddenly, I heard
His interpreter Sri Eruch say, "Amiya Kumarjee, come to Baba and embrace
Him." I heard the call and took a few steps in the empty hall but now
both a deep sense of shame and guilt overpowered me at having again
doubted the person who had given me so many kind evidences of His
Divinity and above everything His all-giving affection. I struggled to
go ahead but when my eyes fell on His pure lotus-like feet I could not
proceed. No, I am not worthy to touch even His feet. He is so noble, so
pure and so loving and I am so suspicious, so mean and so full of filthy
egoistic vices. So instead of going ahead I sat down midway, and said,
"It is O.K. from here."
Baba gestured, His two arms continuously calling me to Him and Sri
Eruch interpreted, "Amiya Kumar, Baba wants you to come up to Him and
embrace Him." Again, I tried but seeing His eyes full of light and
compassion, I lost the power to violate the sanctity of that Being by my
unworthy embrace. As I tried to sit down, Sri Eruch again interpreted
Baba's gestures that continuously motioned me to embrace Him.
are you keeping away from Baba? Baba wants you to come quite close to
Him and embrace Him," said Sri Eruch in soft tones. Then, seeing no
other alternative, I went up to Baba slowly, closed my eyes and held my
hands like a blind man does when he seeks some alms. In a second I found
my hands caught by the most loving hands I had ever felt touching me
and then those hands drew me close and soon I found myself locked up in
an embrace that I cannot talk about but only sigh about till this day.
My head rested on His shoulder and He kissed me as the Father does His
son when they meet after a long interval.
I felt all my sins being washed away by that holy touch and my heart
full of misgivings was set to rest. Yes, Baba loved me and loves me, and
He really does not mind my cross-examining silly brain but tolerates it
as only the really great could tolerate the really petty. After the
embrace was over, Baba made me sit near Him. Still the hall was empty as
people were enjoying tea outside.
Baba said through Sri Eruch the first words during that momentous
meeting during the Darshan interval. "Amiya, you are God! (Baba pointed
His fingers at me). You see God (Baba pointed His fingers at
Himself).....But you have to BECOME GOD." The word 'become' had an added
emphasis as Baba's gestures became emphatic and Sri Eruch faithfully
lent his voice to what Baba wished to be communicated.
The Memoirs of a Zetetic, pp. 97-99
1987 © Avatar Meher Baba Navsari Centre
|I, the lost one, find my way to the ocean's shore,|
Posted to blog, Darvish Khan Writes, on January 2, 2012, by bill gannett
I, the lost one, find my way to the ocean's shore,
Where none can hear my grief above the surf's roar.
I would drown at once the sound of my own thought-
I would die now and forever to all that can be taught.
The ocean wave rises, threatens and then crashes.
Spirit brightens as rolling water softly caresses.
All truth is revealed in the pure and virgin sand,
Washed clean of all mark left by unnatural hand.
I read the scattered omens of shell, wood and stone:
Only by the songbird's cry can this blame be undone.
My grief shapes slowly into verse that disappears
Along the curving ocean shore of bitter tears.
Darvish walks and walks to find the lost silence
That reveals again the beloved Master's presence.
Line in italics by Francis Brabazon
Bill has just published, Ghazals for the Friend, available on Amazon.com
This is the link to buy the book: Ghazals for the Friend
Community Service Projects by Jess Maron
|Members of the 2012 board|
photo: Ben Leet
The Northern California Meher Baba Community is looking for
volunteers to participate in service projects. There are three
categories of projects: Baba lovers helping others within the Baba
community, Baba lovers helping other communities, and Baba lovers
working with others helping other communities. The last category may be
the most beneficial of all. Through working with others we bring
opportunity for communities to see the Baba Center that lives in all of
us. Through our being among each other in the spirit of Baba, interest
in Baba may be sparked in others. Our efforts would be toward serving
other communities, not trying to win people over to Baba, but then what
is real service if not bringing Baba to someone's heart.
What is or isn't happening in your neighborhood that could use
a helping hand or two? Are you interested in cleaning up the beaches,
planting trees, or feeding the hungry?
If you are and
would like to be on our mailing list alerting you to upcoming service
projects or have ideas for how we could help as a community, please
either complete this form http://goo.gl/xhgbQ
or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
the following information: First Name, Last Name, Email Address, What
you would be interested in participating in and/or ideas.
note that if working with other organizations require any fees to be
paid, no money will be supplied by the Meher Baba Center of Northern
California. All fees will be paid for by those participating.
Center Library Note:
you like to be a "patron"? We have a library for your reading pleasure
and convenience. Our library is housed upstairs in a bookcase at the
MBCNC Center on Stockton Street. We have had 14 borrowers over the past
year. You may access a list of the holdings at the web page
meherbabameherbaba.org; look for library, and open the book or video pdf
When you visit the Center, remember to check out the library
books. We would also like donations. For a list of books we need see
the section at the end of the library holdings.
Contact the Newsletter about donations.
|The Trust |
All who wish to share in the commitment laid down by Meher Baba through
the Trust should contact Jack Mormon, email@example.com
Meher Baba Information For introductory information about Avatar Meher Baba, e-mail:
or write to P.O. Box 1101, Berkeley, CA 94701.
Meher Baba Center of Northern California
6923 Stockton Avenue
El Cerrito, California 94530
The meeting schedule is now included in our online calendar (web link above), and can be printed directly from the calendar.
Directions to our Center:
From Highway 80, Interstate 5, going north or south, in El Cerrito,
take the Central Avenue exit exiting east, toward the hills. Cross San Pablo Avenue.
Go under the BART train tracks and less than a block after the tracks,
turn left on Richmond Avenue. Head north on Richmond Avenue until Stockton Avenue (the
first stop light), turn right on Stockton. About two blocks onward, the
Center is located on the left side of the street. Address and phone are
More Local Meetings Lafayette - Sunday Afternoons
Monthly meeting at the home of Kirk and Marlene Allen.
Please call to confirm. (925) 284-4066
Sonoma County - Arti happens once a month, usually the first Sunday.
Locations vary. Call Ellen Van Allen at 707-528-0357 for specific information.
Sacramento area - Meeting times and locations vary
Contact Marilyn Buehler: firstname.lastname@example.org www.radiant-light.org/meherbaba
Los Gatos - Sunday Evenings
At the home of Clint Snyder
Call (408) 395-6865