The Master Plan From the beginning we started work on the Master Plan of Development for Meherabad, and there have been many revisions since the 1970’s. For many years now we have settled into demarcating Meherabad according to the objects Beloved Baba has given in the Trust Deed. We decided that all the land behind the Hostels, where the small Hospital and Staff Quarters are located, known as Outer Meherabad, should be used for the educational and medical public charitable activities of the Trust.
The present educational activities in this area are the High School and sports field. In the future, we plan to build an Arts College, a public library, and additional sports facilities. A provision will be made for the education of the children of people who come here to live and serve. Also, in this area, we plan to build public utility buildings for the villagers of Arangaon.
The present medical activities in this area at Outer Meherabad are the Hospital and the Isolation Ward. In the future, we plan to build a very large in-patient hospital which will give all kinds of treatment: Allopathic, Homeopathic, Ayurvedic, everything.
Lower Meherabad is the place where Beloved Baba spent much time doing important work. The Jhopdi is still there, the Old Mess Quarters (now Dharamshala building); big table house; dhuni; original well; neem tree; Gilori Shah’s tomb are all there. Between the road and the railway tracks are the sites where the Hazrat Babajan School, Sai Darbar, Makan-e-khas, and the post office used to be. This sacred historical area will be preserved for Baba Lovers now and in the future. One thing you should all remember is that the tree Beloved Baba sat under and the well He drank from when He first came to Meherabad in 1923 still exist today!
Because Baba gave Spiritual Training as a Trust object, we will provide facilities for this. We already have built a small Spiritual Training Academy meeting place at Lower Meherabad. In the future, when there will be hundreds of Baba Lovers living at Meherabad and undergoing spiritual training, we will build a large Meeting Hall and other facilities for them.
What is Spiritual Training? It is to train yourself to get rid of your false self; this is inner training. All the objects of the Trust are the outer vehicle for this inner training. While illusory construction goes on at Meherabad, there should be real destruction of the false self within each one.
As I have explained, there were only a few acres of land around Baba’s Samadhi at Upper Meherabad owned by the Trust. When I became a Trustee, I knew what was going to happen here because Baba had told us that Meherabad would become the greatest place of pilgrimage in the future. So, I started to purchase the land around the Samadhi. In the future, all Meherabad Hill will be a huge gathering ground for hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of pilgrims. The present stage for Amartithi will be shifted to the area behind the Samadhi to accommodate larger crowds. We also plan on having several other stages located at several places throughout the Hill area.
You know Beloved Baba has stated in the Trust Deed that a superstructure will be built over His Samadhi. He even gave specific instructions that it should be at least 50 feet on all sides. In fact, in 1965 Baba Himself in Mandali Hall called for a matchbox, took out some matches, and made a design with them. At one point, He made the matches into a triangle. None of us mandali could follow what He meant by it. But in the future, someone will come and design the Superstructure according to His wish.
One of the main objects of the Trust Deed is Pilgrim Accommodations. We have created a whole new, peaceful area for this to the West of the Samadhi. In this area, you will find the Meher Pilgrim Retreat. Soon we will construct a large Dharamshala in this area. As time goes by, the Trust can build more Retreats and Dharamshalas in this area for the pilgrims who wish to stay at Meherabad. Besides accommodating daily pilgrims, we have to see to the accommodation of the pilgrims who will come for Amartithi. Long ago I started purchasing land in that area with this in mind. Still, we do not have sufficient acreage for the hundreds of thousands who will need to be accommodated at Amartithi. This is a challenge for future generations to fulfill. Baba said that a township will grow at Meherabad. One day He took us to Upper Meherabad and said, “This whole area – you have no idea what will happen here”. There has already been building of condos and homes in Meherabad and Arangaon. This is one way people will come and remain here.
A few years ago the idea came to me that the Trust also has to plan for an area where Meher Baba’s life and work will be on display for the thousands upon thousands who will come here. They should learn about his life in an interesting way. So, a series of exhibition halls will be constructed that will show this using the technology of the time. This area will be called “Meher Baba in Motion”. The area will also have a museum and library.
So far, I have only discussed the Master Plan for Meherabad. There is also a Meherazad Master Plan, but it is only in its initial stages.
At present, the Master Plan demarcates Meherazad into two zones, Inner Meherazad, and Outer Meherazad. The inner or historical Meherazad is made up of the properties that Baba Himself lived in and used, Baba’s House, Seclusion Hill, Mandali Hall, the approach road, etc.
Outer Meherazad will provide centers where future generations can gather to watch films and videos, listen to tapes, and read Baba literature. Outer Meherazad will also provide research facilities for persons studying Meher Baba’s life and message. The Meher Free Dispensary and other medical and educational facilities, giving aid to the poor, sick, and needy, already has been constructed in an area near the west border of the Meherazad Estate. Efforts are being made to purchase more land in order to have the space necessary to fulfill this plan.
Of course, the Meher Nazar Trust Office Compound is also included in the Master Plan. The Compound has always been the location of the central office used by Baba and the Mandali, and it remains the office of the Trust to this day. This historic property will be maintained and additional property adjacent to the Compound will be purchased as it becomes available for administrative offices and staff quarters.
Beloved Baba’s dear ones, how fortunate you are to be in such close contact with Him in these early days of His Manifestation! By coming here on pilgrimage you can still have the flavor of what it was like in Baba’s time, only a few decades ago. And for those of you who can come here to serve, there is a great opportunity to take part in fulfilling His wishes as He set them forth in His Trust Deed.
The next article, which will appear shortly on Trust-Talk, will address the first object Baba gave in the 1959 Trust Deed:
“Digging of a well or wells and or obtaining independent water supply from available public sources to replace at the earliest date present limited free water supply on a friendly basis from neighbor Meherji’s well in Lower Meherabad.”
Baba chose water as the first object because Meherabad was a drought-stricken area, and development could not proceed without water. In fact, water supply remains a problem to this day.
In this series, you will see how the objects of the Trust, which started from simple beginnings, have developed into what we see today. No one knows the future limit of this development.