1. Many problems of dating afflict the two lectures that follow this one; for discussion, see endnote 1 on p. 577. Though this present lecture has been represented here as occurring in the “first session,” in fact, we have no evidence as to whether this lecture or the next (also assigned to 28th November) was given first. Indeed, these two “lectures” might represent two compilations from the same body of material given by Baba during the course of this day. The dating of this lecture as 28th November 1926 is based on the “Tiffin Lectures” manuscripts (TTL/FF pp. 131-47, TTL pp. 131-47, and TLD/FF: 28-11-26, pp. 1-16), where the date appears on every page but one. (The 28th November entry in “The Combined Diary” does not mention any lecture by Baba.)
4. In the text of TTL/FF p. 137 and TTL p. 137 several words are missing, but these are supplied in TLD/FF: 28-11-26, p. 6: “. . . without observing all the circumstances and surrounding, even after some very hard and severe tests and trials.” The editors construe this last phrase as referring back to the earlier reference to the sowing of the seeds and their bearing fruit.
5. The original text here (TTL/FF p. 138, TTL p. 138) reads: “. . . those of the Circle who are selected to be realized, are realized, even if . . .” (TLD/FF: 28-11-26, p. 7 reads similarly). This could be construed to mean that the circle members are realized already but don’t know it. The greater sense of the paragraph, however, suggests that the phrase “are realized” means “do get realized”; that is to say, they are realized at some later time.
6. In the “Tiffin Lectures” sources (TTL/FF p. 138 and TLD/FF: 28-11-26, p. 7) the English lines are numbered, 1 through 6 (TTL p. 138 gives 1 through 5 only). Happily, TTL/FF p. 138 supplies the Persian poetic lines as well, handwritten in the Gujarati script. These handwritten lines too are numbered, 1 through 6. The editors have nonetheless reconstituted these six lines into three couplets, since the lines clearly pair off in this way; and they have quoted directly from Qodsī’s edition, since the couplets are defective as they appear in the manuscripts. The “Tiffin Lectures” manuscripts do not indicate the name of the poet; but all of these couplets are from the Divan of Hafez.
7. The discussion of the color of impressions in TTL/FF p. 139 and TTL p. 139, which provide the basis for the remainder of this section, was published in another version in “Fragments from the Spiritual Speeches of His Divine Majesty Sadguru Meher Baba. (20) On Colours of Impressions,” Meher Message, vol. 2, no. 7 (July 1930), p. 8.
8. TTL/FF p. 140 and TTL p. 140 read: “The Central portion of the forehead, exactly between the two eyes is the indication of the ‘Junction’ for the Saliks to go up and come down (Also called ‘the THIRD EYE’)”. (TLD/FF: 28-11-26, p. 9 reads similarly.) This wording does not indicate explicitly what states the “Saliks” go up and down between; the editors have interpolated the phrase “between the Paramātmā state and the universe” on the basis of other explanations of this point given by Baba in these lectures as well as Infinite Intelligence.
THE YOGIS – THE MUJZOOBS & THE SALIKS
THE HUMAN BEINGS – THE YOGIS & THE REALIZED.”
Below this there runs a line of hyphens. Here as in other places (especially in this particular lecture) the editors have construed this capitalized rubric with hyphens beneath it as the title for a new section, and they have adjusted accordingly.
10. The “Tiffin Lectures” sources do not include this word “attributes” but merely refer to “the 3 highest i.e. Eternal Knowledge Bliss & Power” (TTL/FF p. 141 and TTL p. 141; TLD/FF: 28-11-26, p. 11 reads similarly). God Speaks refers to Knowledge-Power-Bliss at various times as “attributes” of God and elsewhere as the “trio-nature” of God.
12. With reference to this and the preceding sentence, TTL/FF p. 142 and TTL p. 142 read: “. . . even though these (Truth and the Highest Knowledge, Power & Bliss imbibed in it) is ‘Real’ and does exist, rather ‘Nothing also exists really except the TRUTH.’” Possibly the word “also” in the phrase “Nothing also exists” (“also” is missing from the version in TLD/FF: 28-11-26, p. 11) means to imply that Nothing has a kind of existence, a false and relative existence: that is, Knowledge-Power-Bliss are real and exist, but Nothing too has a seeming existence. The wording of the original text is too ambiguous, however, to assert this interpretation with confidence, and the edited text does not express this implication.
13. The text of TTL/FF p. 143 and TTL p. 143 is somewhat garbled in this section: “. . . their longing and labours in the acquirement of some ‘Knowledge and experience of the planes’ to which, they rise step by step (as we do here), turning himself and rising step by step () [sic] as we and eventually after tremendous trials and untold difficulties, they rise . . .” (TLD/FF: 28-11-26, p. 12 reads similarly, with minor variations.) This text has been edited in the understanding that the phrase “turning himself and rising step by step” refers to Baba himself and describes his act of climbing back up the stairs that had been alluded to earlier.
14. The “Tiffin Lectures” sources (TTL/FF p. 143, TTL p. 143, and TLD/FF: 28-11-26, p. 13) give this number—“millions”—even though, as best we can gather from the various places that Meher Baba has discussed this subject, the ratio is not actually as drastic as this. That is to say, while most of those who achieve Liberation or God-realization remain absorbed in the Eighth State of God, the number that returns to creation-consciousness as Jīvanmuktas and Paramhansas (the Ninth State) and Sadgurus (the Tenth State) is greater (or so one would infer) than one in millions.
15. After the Realization of God in the state of Fanā Fillah, the Sadguru “assumes” (TTL/FF p. 144, TTL p. 144, and TLD/FF: 28-11-26, p. 13) human form in the sense that he regains consciousness of it. It should not be inferred that the Sadguru has to take birth again, since during this process he has never dropped his body.
16. The original text of TTL/FF p. 145 and TTL p. 145 reads: “And it is on thi [sic] Junction that the Salik makes his seat, takes in those prepared for that state and experience of Param Anand, i.e. between the 6th and 7th planes, and keeps those who are not to return THERE – in that same state in the 7th plane like the Mujzoob . . .” (TLD/FF: 28-11-26, p. 14 reads similarly with small variations.) Strictly speaking, the earlier part of this sentence asserts that Paramānand is experienced between the sixth and seventh planes. Yet it is hard to conceive how this could be so; indeed, the last part of this passage indicates that Majzūbs, who belong to this very category of those experiencing Paramānand, abide on the seventh plane. Presumably the sense is that those who experience Paramānand have been brought to that exalted state by the Sālik Sadguru and abide with him, whose station is at the junction between these two planes; but Paramānand itself belongs to the Fanā Fillah of the seventh plane. Again, we must recall that the original prose of the “Tiffin Lectures” has not always been written with philosophical precision.
17. The “Tiffin Lectures” sources (TTL/FF p. 145, TTL p. 145, and TLD/FF: 28-11-26, p. 14) read: “. . . thereafter to those (of his Circle) he prepared for the same, and so and so on.” Though the wording is ambiguous, the last phrase probably means that the process repeats down the chain of succession between Sadgurus and circle members.
18. At this juncture the “Tiffin Lectures” sources give a parenthetical note: “(vide pp. 134 – 288-9)” (TTL/FF p. 146 and TTL p. 146; TLD/FF: 28-11-26, p. 15 reads “wide” instead of “vide”). Cross-references of this sort, introduced by the Latin word “vide,” occur several times in the “Tiffin Lectures” and with considerable frequency in “The Combined Diary.” What is remarkable about this particular cross-reference, however, is the latter set of page numbers (“288-9”). In fact, TTL/FF p. 134 and TTL p. 134, which provide a main source for the discussion of bhakti yoga earlier in this current Tiffin Lecture (see pp. 310-11), do indeed pertain to the subject now being alluded to and make sense as a cross-reference. The manuscript of “Thursday Tiffin Lectures” concludes with p. 174, however. And so the reference to “pp. 288-9” cannot easily be construed except as referring to a second volume of that same manuscript, continuously paginated from the end of its first volume. As of the present date no such volume has surfaced in any of the known archival collections. Until it does, or until fresh evidence comes to light, the reference to “pp. 288-9” will have to remain a mystery.
19. The original text of the “Tiffin Lectures” sources seems to be corrupt: “. . . and it will not only be proved but actually shewn [sic] that the ‘Root’ (Base & Head) of the tree is at the ‘top’ and the ‘Head’ at the root (bottom) . . .”. (TTL/FF p. 146 and TTL p. 146; TLD/FF: 28-11-26, p. 15 reads similarly). Now it can hardly be the case that the “head” is both at the top and bottom, as this sentence indicates; and it is hard to make sense of the first occurrence of the word “root,” which the text glosses as including both the base and the head. Something has been garbled, possibly through a simple error in copying.
20. This paragraph in the “Tiffin Lectures” sources (TTL/FF pp. 146-47, TTL pp. 146-47, and TLD/FF: 28-11-26, pp. 15-16) has been written in an obscure and sometimes cryptic manner; the present text has been significantly edited, as will be commented upon in subsequent endnotes. But at this juncture it should be observed that the writing does not make it clear whether Baba’s own words are actually being recorded or whether they are being reported synoptically and in paraphrase. In actuality, of course, all of the “Tiffin Lectures” come to us through the filter of Chanji’s Diary and his recording process; but usually the “Tiffin Lectures” present content as Baba’s own words more unambiguously than the present passage does.
21. The original text of TTL/FF p. 146 and TTL p. 146 is obscurely worded: “and finally it assumes the Human form, and so on and so on” (TLD/FF: 28-11-26, p. 16 reads similarly). While the last phrase (“and so on and so on”) might literally be taken to imply that the evolution of form continues on after the human stage, we know that this was not Meher Baba’s view. Presumably what is meant is that the journey of chaitanya, though having completed its evolutionary phase, nonetheless continues (“and so on”) through reincarnation and involution.
22. The original wording of TTL/FF p. 146 and TTL p. 146 here is infelicitous but not altogether unclear: “Now – when in vegetable state when the growth commences from the diverse (reverse) opposite direction (upwards) i.e. head being downwards . . . .” (TLD/FF: 28-11-26, p. 16 reads similarly.)
23. This parenthetic expression expands a rather obscure phrase in TTL/FF pp. 146-47 and TTL pp. 146-47: “. . . i.e. being head downwards, and the concrete concrete [sic] example of ‘slates’ taken up and put down) – then the Chaitanya gets a shock . . . .” (TLD/FF: 28-11-26, p. 16 reads similarly, with minor variations.) Now the reference to “slates” in this passage is unintelligible unless we suppose that it refers to the slates that Baba was writing his lecture notes on, and that this phrase essentially represents “stage directions” accompanying the lecture. It has been edited accordingly.
24. The “Tiffin Lectures” sources for the final paragraph that follows are once again exceedingly garbled and obscure; at certain junctures the editorial reconstruction has been little better than guesswork. To circumvent the necessity of riddling the edited text of this paragraph with endnotes, we reproduce the complete original text of TTL/FF p. 147, the only source in which a major lacuna has been filled (in other respects TTL p. 147 and TLD/FF: 28-11-26, p. 16 read similarly). In view of the extreme difficulties that it poses, readers with textual and critical interests should be warned that the edited text is at many points hypothetical. With that caveat, the source text reads:
With such and many other theories, and proofs, and marvellous [sic] wonders there will be some great miracle and the whole world will be “in a stir”, for this is now the end of the “Pralaya” (pralayno ant najhdīk āvato jāy chhe) – a certain period for certain movements etc. There have been innumerable such “Pralayas” of crores of years each, in the past, and the different Avatars, that had been at different times in the past, are like “drops” in this “Ocean of Param Anand” (Truth) and though each “Avatars” [sic] (a drop) aloof from the other, coming after ages, each knew/that “I am Ananta” and so on – the Involutions and Evolutions – arising out of “chaitanya” and having attained to the Highest after ages, of course, and such other innumerable “atoms” (Avatars) being One with the Ocean, finishing one “Maha Pralaya” and then another “Maha Pralaya” and then another and so on, and so on, i.e. the different Avatars, coming after ages, and even in the Maha Pralayas are all “One and the Same” (drops of the One Ocean of Truth – the Rays of the same “Fountain of Light” etc. etc.).
25. The source for this Gujarati line, TTL/FF p. 147, reads: “pralayno ant najhdīk āvato jāy chhe.” In this form the line does not make sense; literally it translates, “The end of Pralaya is coming near.” But plainly the meaning of the passage is that Pralaya, which brings about the end of the eon, is coming near. The editors have revised to express this meaning, chiefly by adding the word vakhat, “time.”