Symbols of the world's religions



Herbert Davy

At 6 p.m. we reached Avila.... In appearance and spiritual atmosphere Avila is not unlike Assisi; both have nursed and witnessed the labors of great saints. Baba explained that it is the spiritual atmosphere, the quickened vibrations, that give value to the shrines of saints. They are not present in the more subtle body, nor is there any special virtue in the dust and bones of their physical bodies. "Saints," He said, "are nerves in My body" — pointing to His wrists and arms....

Baba had very special work to do here and we were all to fast for twenty four hours. During this time we were not to touch Him. Shortly before noon, we crossed the square and entered the cathedral.... The spiritual atmosphere was not unlike that of St. Mark's at Venice or of Assisi. As we left, Baba specially directed that four silver coins should be given to the sacristan.

On three sides Avila is surrounded by bleak hills; on the south side the rocks upon which the city is built descend swiftly to the plain. Passing through the Southern Gate we stood on the terrace and the view was magnificent....

That day with Baba, everything we looked at was enchanted; an ecstasy of living took hold of all of us. It was beautiful, but the beauty was within us. We might have been walking in Galilee....

Baba was so happy in Avila; His spiritual work was accomplished. How fortunate we were to be with Him. He explained to us how all those who were not there, His followers, would still share in the spiritual benefits of this experience.

There are in Europe as in other continents holy places particularly connected with great spiritual work. The four centers are St. Mark's in Venice, a place on the Ligurian coast in Italy, Assisi and Avila. Baba had now visited or revisited them all. I was ordered to return to Avila in ten days' time and to visit this particular place every day (which I did).

It was essential that Baba should visit this spot and it is interesting to see how it was chosen. First, He never told us that we were going to Avila. Kitty, who was responsible for arranging the time-table of the Spanish trip, having been told by Baba that one day should be spent on a mountain, asked the travel bureau for advice. So it might be said that the bureau, which of course did not know the reason for our journey, decided on Avila. The ways of Baba are very mysterious sometimes. The use of human agencies and intelligence to fulfill hidden spiritual purposes is one of the most interesting aspects of His working.


LOVE ALONE PREVAILS, pp. 111-112, Kitty Davy
1981 © Avatar Meher Baba Perpetual Public Charitable Trust


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