Copyright 2000 Frank Davis
All words of Meher Baba copyright Avatar Meher Baba
Perpetual Public Charitable Trust, Ahmednagar MS India
Among the references for Meher Baba are Shri, Master and Perfect Master; as well as Avatar. Meher Baba was given these respectful titles (including "Meher Baba" itself, which means "Compassionate Father"; for His birth name is Merwan Sheriar Irani.) years before He publicly acknowledged His Divinity. To ensure the integrity of the original writings, (and the unfolding story they are historically a part of), these have not been changed. And, Meher Baba is the Avatar of our age. Baba is God.
Editing has been kept to a minimum (my choice of capitalization, certain transpositions from the former names of cities to the current, etc.). Editing has also given me choices; i.e., where an author in one book (versus another book by the same author) has defined a word similarly enough I have gone with the more comprehensive of the two. However, where this has been the case and there are interesting enough differences, I have given both definitions; crediting accordingly the differing source materials. If one authors definition is extremely close to another, I have generally credited the author whose last name falls first alphabetically; excepting here Meher Baba, who, out of respect, is always first. There is no judgment on my part as to which definition is most definitive. It therefore behooves the reader to read all the definitions and make oneís own judgment. There are likely protocols I am overlooking; the aid of others is invited here.
Language distinctions are only noted where they have been so in the original source (there are 16 languages in India, innumerable dialects, Baba "spoke" at least a half dozen with some regularity, and referenced the mystic tradition of Sufi as well as Vedantic tradition regularly in printed matter. As with other differences that may be noted (i.e., definitions), there are differing language sources referenced. These are not necessarily in conflict. (Perhaps someone else will take on that sorting out.) Similarly, pronunciations only appear as they had in the original source material, if at all; excepting the fancy punctuation marked areas that my keyboard is incapable of. (Again, perhaps someone else will take that on.). A note on the languages of India postscripts this forward.
Problematic is where certain words have not been included in anyoneís glossary. By what means of measure do I presume to submit a definition? For now, this edition will be "pure"; lacking that presumption as well as that comprehensiveness. Still, seeking to be a singular resource; i.e., a comprehensive collection of as many glossary and similar type notes, the only boundary of what is and is not included (at this writing) is what is available to me in printed Baba literature. Spiritual terms will appear side by side with words like manuka (raisins) for no other reason except that an author had a reason to include that word. Future editions (if any) may include more glossary contributions as yet unseen by me or unpublished. If it appeared, and I found it, itís here.
Likewise, as with other inclusions, various people are here noted. In the glossary of God Speaks Dr. Donkin can be found (for example), which set this precedent. Similarly, other entities of note also appear both in the aforementioned book as in others; i.e., buildings and locations, sacred objects, other books, and so forth. While this could easily extend even to foods, flowers, etc. (and often does), unless they were already included elsewhere and/or have a bearing, my specific focus is to items of note as regards Babaís life and spirituality generally. This is meant to be a resource of a type and not a collection of dictionaries. Naturally, there have been many other relevant words not yet fleshed out, (names, terms, et. al.), which beg future inclusion. Bhauís Lord Meher goes a long way toward this end. Regarding names, because persons are sometimes known by only one name; and moreover sometimes known primarily by only first, sometimes last, name an effort to include entries as they are known most often has been made. To honor this convention "See" and "See also"s are included on the name least familiar as much as possible. This should also lend to a historical integrity of familiarity years hence.
Other similar works may follow to fill in the gaps: "Baba Games", "Baba Foods", etc. This work has itís own focus.
As this glossary is compiled from a variety of literature, and credit is due the original sources; please note the key below as the primary indicator for those as well as other codes.
It should be noted that the words collected here have some relationship to Baba through the literature. That is not to say that these are all of equal weight by any means. Some carry almost no weight, being used illustratively or as a kind of garnish by a given author; all the way through a progressive relationship to words coined by Him.
As is constructive input of any nature, new sources and contributions with sources welcomed always for future consideration. The intention of this work is to be a singular resource of itís kind, and as such ought be as comprehensive and accurate as possible. This is my contribution as far as I can take it at this time; and as with much of life, I have found I can not do it all alone.
And a final postnote: "Languages: English enjoys associate status but is the most important language for national, political, and commercial communication, Hindi the national language and primary tongue of 30% of the people, Bengali (official), Telugu (official), Marathi (official), Tamil (official), Urdu (official), Gujarati (official), Malayalam (official), Kannada (official), Oriya (official), Punjabi (official), Assamese (official), Kashmiri (official), Sindhi (official), Sanskrit (official), Hindustani a popular variant of Hindu/Urdu, is spoken widely throughout northern India."
Note: "24 languages each spoken by a million or more persons; numerous other languages and dialects, for the most part mutually unintelligible".
Internet sites that may have relevence to related pursuits are as follows as of the date noted here: Thursday, September 28, 2000:
Indian Spirituality/Religious dictionaries (Jainism particularly; there are three.)
The Internet Sacred Text Archive (A nice collection of a bit of it all.)
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