Baba and the Nilkanthwala Mast

Only recently did I come across Meher Baba, whose disciples believed him to be an Avatar of God, along with  Jesus, Mohammed and Krishna. It seems that towards the end of his life and the ‘dropping off’ his body, Baba summoned a famous mast to come to stay with him for a time. A mast would be a ‘God-intoxicated Soul on the Path’. This particular God-intoxicated Soul was Nilkanthwala.

During his time with Baba this man, who maintained silence (and I think perhaps nakedness) for much of his life, seems to have spoken freely on many topics. Having mentioned here a while back an ancient Buddhist prophecy about what is in store for humanity, I was surprised to immediately come to this passage.  I fear it will not cheer anyone up.

“He used to cook his food with the help of Baidul. During the cooking he went on talking, saying mostly words which one could not understand. Among the sentences which he spoke to himself, the following is a trans­lation of his utterances in Hindi:

“The earth will split; men will become helpless and shelterless like beasts roaming on a plateau. Men will die in large numbers and will take birth again. Due to forced circumstances, men will be compelled to eat grass and leaves. Old human habitations will be wiped out and new ones will be established. The place of the in­digenous languages like Hindi will be replaced by the English language. Rites, rituals and religious ceremonies will be eliminated. A very big cloud will appear.”

An internet search led me to the same passage with some further background taken from a book on Baba called Avatar. I have been reading the account given by Ivy Duce, a disciple who assisted Baba for many years and who went on to run a Sufi group in the US. Her book is called ‘How a Master Works’. It is remarkable what turns up in my rural second-hand bookshop.

 Baba and the Nilkanthwala Mast

Just before the 10th of July, 1958, Baba ordered one of his close disciples at Dehra Dun to go to Hardwar and bring with him the Nilkanthwala Mast to Meherazad, to be near Baba in His seclusion. The following is the account of the Mast as given by the disciple:

On the 4th of July, 1958, when I reached the place where Nilkanth Mast stayed, I found him as if ready for some long journey. We looked at each other and before I was able to pay my respects to him, he ordered me to come and sit in front of him. This he communicated to me through gestures. He has the habit of communicating through gestures quickly in an authoritative manner.

After a while I requested him to come with me to Ahmednagar to meet dear Baba. I told him that the journey would be made in 2nd class according to his usual habit. He conveyed his willingness for the journey by clapping his hands loudly. We reached Hardwar Railway Station five hours before the scheduled time for the arrival of the train, so the Mast had to wait in the waiting room.

The Mast continued observing silence and remained in a particular posture almost throughout the journey. I took him once to the dining car, where he handled his spoon very efficiently. Half-naked as he was, the sight of his handling a spoon while eating amongst cultured persons and military officials in the dining car proved most unique.

When we reached Meherazad the Mast was assigned a separate room and Baidul was ordered by Baba to look after him. It was on the 10th of July when Baidul sent word that the Mast had broken his silence; after that, he talked on all sorts of relevant and irrelevant subjects practically every day, such as saying “Tindamindy, Udia bhai” . . . or, “Cooly lok,” etc. Some of his short sentences were rich in sense, such as “The world is a zero and in it is God.”

Whenever dear Baba visited him, the Mast took special care to offer Baba a seat, saying, “Please sit here.” Sometimes he praised Baba in Sanskrit verses: “We play with You, we speak with You, we take food with You, and we make jokes with You, in our ignorance.”

The article from which this is taken can be found here. http://www.theawakenermagazine.org/avol06/av06n03/av06n03p12.htm#Previous%20Page

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2 Responses to Baba and the Nilkanthwala Mast

  1. miramw7 says:

    The Sufi Murshid you mentioned is Ivy Duce, not Druce. Please correct.
    thank you.

  2. PeterJ says:

    Ah, Thanks Miramw7. I have a friend names Druce so must have gone into autopilot.

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