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Mehernath Kalchuri – Life with Avatar Meher Baba
Mehernath Kalchuri first had Avatar Meher Baba’s darshan as an infant in Baba’s arms at the Wadia Park Darshan in Ahmednagar, 1954. Mehernath’s father, Vir Singh Kalchuri, (nicknamed “Bhau” by Baba), had left his family to join Meher Baba in 1953 as a permanent Mandali member, living in Meher Baba’s intimate company until Baba dropped His body in 1969.
As a “fortunate slave,” Bhau served Meher Baba in many capacities – night watchman, mast tour companion, poet, playwright, and biographer.
In 1957, Baba called Bhau’s wife, Rama, and the children, Sheela and Mehernath, from their life in a wealthy Nagpur family home to live in Meherabad Family Quarters. There, in the care of Padri and under Baba’s direct orders, the family lived very simply, in quiet, desolate Meherabad (on the edge of the village of Arangaon).
Baba personally visited their home several times, and through Padri, letters from Bhau, and His direct contact, Baba gave detailed instructions to Rama about the care of Mehernath and Sheela. Dr. Donkin, Padri, Pendu, Sidhu, Chaagan Master, Mansari and Mohammed Mast were family companions, and when he was between five and nine, Mehernath’s hobby was building small Baba Centres out of mud bricks!
In 1962, Meher Baba instructed Rama and children to move to Khushru Quarters (now Avatar Meher Baba Trust Office/Meher Nazar) for the sake of the children’s education. Baba’s secretary, Adi K. Irani, became their caretaker.
Bhau remained with Baba and rarely had direct contact with his family, to the point that Mehernath thought of Meher Baba as his father.
At Khushru Quarters, the family also had frequent contact with Baba’s sister, Mani, His brothers Jal and Behram, Mandali members Eruch, Rano, Khorshed, Feram Workingboxwala and Sarosh K. Irani and Adi K.’s sisters, Dolly and Piroja.
Meher Baba frequently visited Khushru Quarters, and from time-to-time, Rama, Mehernath and Sheela would also be called to see Baba at Meherazad. The family also had the opportunity to stay with Baba at Guruprasad in Pune during the 1960s. There Mehernath had many chances to sit with Baba in the hall, and, until he was age ten, to join his mother and sister for lunch with Mehera and the women. (See Sheela Kalchuri’s book Growing Up With God.)
Mehernath was fifteen on 31st January 1969 when Baba dropped His body. Adi K. drove Mehernath and Sheela to the Samadhi, and each day for the next seven days, they stayed keeping vigil from early morning until late night.
After obtaining his law degree, Mehernath assisted his father Bhau, by then a Trustee of the Avatar Meher Baba Trust, in myriad ways. In 1996, Mehernath was appointed as a Trustee and continues to serve Meher Baba’s cause in this capacity. Mehernath is the President of Avatar Meher Baba Ahmednagar Centre, and Meher Baba Centres all around India frequently invite him as an honoured guest to speak about Meher Baba.
Mehernath has also travelled to USA and Australia on speaking tours, entertaining Baba lovers
with his vast cache of Meher Baba stories, which he laces with Hindi and Urdu verses from Baba’s favorite poets. He rejoices in every chance to share stories from Meher Baba’s life and His message of Love and Truth with all.