Symbols of the world's religions



Ivy O. Duce

From Oklahoma City we drove an hour by cab to the hospital at Prague and were met at the door by Sarosh Irani and Delia DeLeon. They were haggard and spent. Sarosh burst into tears and exclaimed, "I shall have to kill myself — I can never face India again, for the thousands of devotees there will all feel I should have taken better care of the Master!"

I let him weep, and then tried to point out that as he was not even in the stricken car, he could hardly be held responsible.

We went to see the patients, and it was a terrible shock. Baba had broken his left arm just below the shoulder, and the left lower leg had both bones broken in a jagged way. His face and nose were swollen, and we learned from Dr. Goher in afterdays:

The septum of beloved Baba's nose was broken. There was profuse bleeding from his nose until the nostrils were plugged at the hospital. Rano sat with Baba and kept mopping up the profusion of blood while I tried to persuade Dr. Burleson to attend to Baba. The doctor was so busy attending to Mehera's head wound that he would not come until that was stitched, so I requested him to let me at least have the material for plugging. Thus with his permission I was able to plug beloved Baba's nose with gauze strips and so stop further bleeding. Baba had swallowed so much blood that in the night he vomited more than a kidney basin full of blood. The nose bridge being broken was the cause of Baba losing the beautiful shape of his nose.

It happened that Baba only wore the lower denture on that day and the force of his fall from the car caused the denture to cut into his upper gum, causing a deep wound in the gum which made eating and drinking very difficult and painful.

It had been at the suggestion of Dr. Donkin that Baba was persuaded to wear dentures on this trip to the West. He wore them reluctantly, and usually either the upper or lower denture, and then not too often. Before this trip in 1952 and after it, Baba never wore dentures.

Mehera had a fractured skull. Her closed eyes looked like huge red beets and she bore an ugly wound in her forehead. Elizabeth Patterson, who had been driving, had both arms, a collarbone and some ribs broken, as she had been pinned behind the wheel. Meheru had one fractured wrist, one badly sprained wrist, and assorted cuts and bruises. Manija was the least hurt — her feet and knees badly scratched, and she limped with a cane. She would not eat for days and was overcome with grief because God had not given her as much to bear as the others.

Baba took my hand and then wrote on his board:

"You must understand that this was God's will and it will result in benefit to the whole world."


1975 © Sufism Reoriented, Inc.


 Biography | Anthology | Eternal Beloved | Avatar Meher Baba | HeartMind | Search