((Originally posted to Meher Chowk on 16 Dec 14, from Meherabad -vshr))
I have excerpted this interesting document, and filed those excerpts with minimal comments here: Sunni Missionaries Arrive at Meherabad, 15 Dec 13
It was some five years ago when I intuited, simply on the basis of statistics published by AMBPPCT, that numbers of Muslim pilgrims arriving from Iran would increase rapidly. That only remained true until about 2011, when they apparently leveled off and started to decline. The reasons for that are too complex to discuss. I also realized, circa 2008, that Iranian Muslims are Shi’a, which is a minority in the Muslim world, and that this particular group, as lovely as they truly are, would not be the source of the overwhelming influx of Muslim pilgrims which was projected by Meher Baba. Clearly, only the Sunnis, who are as powerful and numerous as the Shi’a are beautiful, could be responsible for something like that.
It was also clear to me that, as nuch as the Sunni and Shi’a tend to be perpetually at each others’ throats, if left to each other, the Sunnis, being the dharma heirs of Abu Bakr (Munammed’s Peter), are necessarily and quite structurally the duty guard dogs of the Muslim dharma realm, and if those (from their POV) dharmically challenged Shi’a started acting like they were leaving Islam en masse, by pursuing somebody like Meher Baba, for example, then this would change the whole Sunni view of them, such that the Sunni would then find them selves compelled to follow the Iranian Shi’a crowd to Meher-ville, in an attempt to save them from leaving Islam completely.
And in my opinion, that is exactly what we’re starting to see here with this Sunni missionary activity. I don’t think this is the beginning of it, I just think that this is the most open public thing they’ve gotten up to yet. Previously, they were just spying anonymously. But now, they’re convinced that Meher Baba is a dharmic threat that they have to counter. And so fine, as long as they’re honest and honorable with their intentions, which seems to me to be the case.
What will happen with the Sunnis is what always happens when neutral and/or hostile populations come into contact with Meher Baba: Such populations are always polarized. Always. Some are attracted and some are repelled, and in the end, the Sunnis as a whole culture will come to Baba, because they’re fanatics and they won’t stop at their approach until they get to the bottom of the mystery, and we know what’s there: God’s Infinite Love, and we know that that always wins because St. Theresa of Avila told us that, and she was God’s Saint.
But, you might say, “What does trying to convert western pilgrims to Islam have to do with the Shi’a? Because the Sunni are hegemonists, don’t you see? They can’t talk to the Shi’a, the schism has long since gone far beyond that, so they’re trying to cut off the Shi’a escape route from under their thumbs. That’s what’s really the very flea in the ointment of Sunni self-absorption. Whether the Iranians are actually Muslim or not is simply a fig leaf for their real emotional problem with them. In fact, this entire missionary activity is actually nothing but an offer to negotiate with the Trust about the Shi’a, like this: “OK. You have lured away some of our sheep (the Iranian Shi’a). Fine. But that gives us no choice but to go after some of your horses (western pilgrims). Are you ready to talk business with us yet, or do we have to get interested in some of your camels (local Indian Muslims) as well?
But yea, verily I say to thee sports fans, nobody at the Trust, and no Iranian Shi’a with enough on the ball to make it to Mehereabad in the first place, is every going to buy into any of this. But they’ll be happy to talk. Oh God yes, and the talk will just go around and around and around and around until everybody wanders off to find some perhaps perfectly unethical way to relieve the accumulated stress. And the longer and stupider the negotiations get, the more they finally come back to Meher Baba, because that is finally the only thing that is happening at Meherabad. Next problem please.
One of the big topics of discussion in the MPR dining hall is, “Something big always happens when a Mandali dies. For example, it was just after Eruch died that 9/11 happened, which makes sense, because Eruch was such a guy, and this forced the duty American guys (i.e. first responders) to come to the fore. So now what’s going to happen now that Bhauji has died?” How about the Sunni Muslim inundation, since the Shi’a influx went straight to Bhauji? Although the Sunni missed that boat, they’re sure to jump on a much bigger, more powerful, and more mainstream one: Meher Baba as the current Rasool-Allah.
Avatar Meher Baba ki Jai,