MANDALI LETTERS26 Sep 2001
Jai Beloved Baba
We are overjoyed to hear the news of the USA Today article about "The Oceanic Concerts". It is especially heartwarming that it will be released on October 16th, Baba's New Life Day. May this be the beginning of something new for you. I feel that Baba is with you, guiding you, and behind this project. All Meherazad Mandali send their hearty congratulatons and love in Baba to you dear Raphael, and to dear Peter.
BELOVED AVATAR MEHER BABA KI JAI!
8th November 2000
My dearest Raphael,
Mummy Virginia was indeed a very fortunate one and you too are very fortunate because when you were in her tummy when Baba touched you. You are a blessed one and your faith in Him is very firm. I love you.
Be brave and have courage dear Raphael. Beloved Baba is with you always.
With all love and Jai Baba.
In His Love & Service,
BELOVED AVATAR MEHER BABA KI JAI!
13th October 2000
My dearest Raphael,
All lovers of Meher Baba at the Pilgram Center in India heard the message that Mummy Virginia joined Beloved Baba and they all shouted loudly ŗAvatar Meher Baba Ki Jai.˛
Mummy Virginia was, and is very close to Beloved Baba, and now she is with Him. She is the Fortunate One who was thinking to join Him, and she did. She was remembering Him all the time and she would be in a very good mood. I found her full of joy when she would see me and talk about Beloved Baba. She would constantly remember Baba and she is blessed indeed.
It is natural for you, dear Raphael, to miss dear Mum but know well that you served her wholeheartedly with all love and you did your duty very well towards her. Now, be brave and strong in Beloved Babašs love which is always with you.
I love you dear Raphael, and I like you very much because you are the flower of Beloved Babašs Divine Garden.
With all love and Jai Baba, Jane Brown is here and she prays and prays for Mummy Virginia when she goes to Beloved Babašs Tomb in her prayer in the morning and evening and therefore you should feel happy that Beloved Baba has appointed her a messenger to give your news to Him everyday. She always sends her loving Jai Baba to you.
In His Love & Service,
June 13, 2001
Sufi Dear Ones
On Monday morning, 11th June, I received the news (through Sheela) that Brother Jim MacKie expired. I could not believe it; it was really sudden and shocking news to me.
I had a very friendly and loving relationship with him. When I would go to the West, I would not leave without visiting the Centers in Walnut Creek and in Washington.
Immediately, I informed Meherazad and Meherabad, and very quickly after doing so, I went to to Meherabad. I took three flower chadars, one for Beloved Baba, one for dear Mehera and one for dear Mani, and also flowers for all late dear Mandali. When I had placed them on Beloved Babašs Tomb, and on the tombs of dear Mehera, Mani and the late Mandali, I prayed wholeheartedly to Beloved Baba for dear Jim Yesterday (Tuesday, 12th June), I again went and offered my prayers at Babašs Tomb and at the Dhuni for dear Jim, I wish that my Sufi Brothers and Sisters should not worry and pray wholeheartedly to Beloved Avatar Meher Baba to keep dear Jim in His infinite heart, and bestow peace to all Sufis.
In recent years, I found Brother Jim very much inclined towards Beloved Baba. He went to the extent of dancing joyously in His name when I paid a visit to the Washington, DC center. I felt very much touched with his attitude. Brother Jim was the one, when I was talking about the New Life, and the period for the talk was over, he extended the time to hear about the New Life. All these memories remain with me.
Jim played his role very wisely. He served Beloved Baba's cause wholeheartedly and lovingly, and therefore, there is nothing to worry about. He fought the battle of life very bravely, and he won the battle.
Brother Jim requested that there be no memorial service for him, but instead a celebration of Beloved Avatar Meher Baba. How great he is, that he left this instruction! One who is remembered by the Beloved does not need any service. The Beloved performs His service for them in His own way. I heard the voice of dear Jim, and one who belongs to the Beloved does not die in the worldly sense. His dying is living, living in Him, and he comes closer and closer to Him. Therefore, there is no room for worry, but there is room to have the longing to occupy that room, which Brother Jim has already occupied.
I share the grief of all the members of the Sufi group and pray to Beloved Baba, Who is the source of Infinite Peace. I extend my heartfelt condolences to you, along with those from Meherazad. I know everyone in the group must be very much disturbed, but this shock is also under His Divine Will. Therefore, we must take the calamity in a natural way and face it silently, thinking that it is Beloved Baba's Wish, and He has fulfilled His Wish. Please tell all the group members that they should not worry; Beloved Baba is with them, so they should remain composed.
Brother Jim is with Baba in His Ocean. May the Beloved make him drink a cup of nectar which may bestow upon him peace.
All loving Jai Babas to you,
In His love and Service,
Wednesday, June 13, 2001
A loving Jai Baba to you. I have received your email sent on 13 November and am very happy to see that you understand the mandali's feelings and attitudes to Baba treasures - concerning this matter we are united in our opinion - that anything of Baba's person or His personal belongings such as clothing, must never be sold or auctioned. With the right motive and for a good purpose it may be acceptable to auction items touched by Him, such as Baba photos or signed books.
With the guidance already laid down by Mani and our own years of observation and experience of how precious these things are, we want all who are fortunate enough to be entrusted as "caretakers" of these treasures to realize the responsibility they carry. Knowing your love for Baba we are pleased that you consulted us first, so that you can take the right action. We now realise that in addition to Mani's interview on this subject published some time ago in Love Street LampPost, we will need to give out a joint statement from the mandali to be the guidelines for the future, so that we leave no misunderstandings on this most important matter. I know that Baba's Nazar is on you. Much love to you,
VIRGINIA & HAROLD RUDDIn conjunction with Meher Baba's birthday, this new video presents an individual who has experienced the most profound kind of spiritual renewal. Virginia was touched, embraced, ignited, overwhelmed and turned inside-out by that divine force of re-orientation as it was personified by Meher Baba.
We see how the Avatar draws someone who is destined to be with him no matter what they may think or know or feel or believe. We are about to meet an articulate, forthright, intelligent individual with a distinguished academic career, someone who was completely outside the influence of religion, religion, mysticism or related fields. Someone absolutely and forcefully un-interested in such issues. This person's name is Virginia Rudd.
Virginia Rudd chaired the English Department at Rutgers University in New Jersey. She had worked with the well-known scholar of mythology, Joseph Campbell, and was one of the first to develop college-level courses in mythology. Her husband, Harold Rudd, was a professional actor who also served for the time as secretary to the famous film producer, Gabriel Pascal.
In the years after World War II, Harold Rudd was drawn to meet many international figures who came to the United States representing diverse spiritual and political movements. Virginia often accompanied her husband to these meetings, though she herself had little interest in them. She was especially uninterested in gurus, who were more suspect than political extremists. Finally, she exhausted her patience and announced that she would attend no more meetings. At just this time, Harold learned of a new guru visiting from India. He talked her into seeing this one last figure. He even talked her into traveling all the way to South Carolina, which she considered a foreign country.
Virginia had no wish to meet another guru. Her life and interests included no room at all for such a figure. However, as soon as she entered the room to see Meher Baba, she was lost in a golden cloud of bliss that permeated every cell of her being, that answered every question about existence and its purpose, that reverberated through her with such wondrous insistence that she felt she had achieved the goal of life. She never even saw Meher Baba sitting there. Later she learned he had put her on his lap and cuddled her, but she has no memory of that. The next thing she knew, she was sitting on a bench behind the barn, several hours later.
That was in May, 1952. A few months later, Virginia met Meher Baba again, in Murshida Duce's apartment in New York. This time she was able to see Meher Baba clearly and converse with him.
On the tape we're about to see, Virginia Rudd describes these meetings with Meher Baba and how he changed her life completely. She describes how in 1956 Meher Baba gave her a child, how Meher Baba actually ensouled the child during their meeting, and how he guided her pregnancy and the child's birth. We'll also see images of Meher Baba playing with this child at the 1958 Sahavas. The child's name, of course, is Raphael Rudd.
Raphael produced this videotape of his mother's memories, and we hear his music on the soundtrack. It is an extraordinary story of the transforming power of that divine force of renewal which is Meher Baba's love.
Murshid James S. B. Mackie
*Taken from Meher Baba's Birthday Program, 2000*
Photo above taken from Meher Baba's American birthday celebration - July 22nd, 1956
To purchase The video of Virginia Rudd- Memories Of Meher Baba,Please send check or money order for $25.00 to:
Raphael Rudd RecordsThis is an account of the story behind one of the pieces on "The Oceanic Concerts' cd. I was 13 when I wrote this piece. "I wanted to share a story about a piece I wrote a long time ago. It is entitled "Longing For The Beloved", a short solo piano composition that was inspired by Mehera's longing to be reconnected with her beloved Baba(Physically).I went to India with my mother and father (and the entire New York group)in 1969, for the Last Darshan. At the palace in Poona where it was held, I was still fortunately young enough to spend time with Mehera with my mom. The men where not really allowed to spend time with her right after Baba's death. Mehera was suffering tremendously and grieving the loss of her Beloved in the physical form. At 13 years old, the whole experience was overwhelming. Here I am sitting with my own mother who is dearly loved and respected by all,comforting so compassionately God's counterpart. It was working too, Mehera took solace at that moment with Virginia's help. At that time I could not imagine what it was like to be in her place. Also, I missed not seeing Baba again too. I knew somehow though, even as a teenager, "He" was always there. When I returned home to New Jersey, where I was born and grew up, I found myself one day fiddling around on the piano. I was already a practicing student, fairly good and inspired to learn, when I began to play around with a melody that just came out of me. I remembered that past time with Mehera in India, and her longing. So I sat and I focused, and I got "in tune" with the tune.
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Baba was present not just with me but I felt him in me bubbling. The song came, the melody developed and grew into 3 sections, that grow and return. As it begins,it blossoms into the next section, then it dances playfully, then a return to the blossoming and a final return to the original theme of Mehera and her longing. "Longing For The Beloved",instantly became the title. So this story continues, I sent a tape to Mehera of this short work. Apparently, Mehera was deeply moved by this piano piece. I received a lovely letter from her praising this piece and how it comforted her, but more so she proclaimed that, as it was played in Mandali Hall, Baba appeared to her for the first time since his death. These words from Mehera struck me quite forcefully and very profoundly. I felt honored to have been of assistance to her and that Baba used me to be a source of inspiration for her. Actually it's track #13 on the release.I hope that all can share in my experience."
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