Amartithi (Meher Baba Remembrance Day) Date in the current year: January 31, 2022

Amartithi (Meher Baba Remembrance Day) Meher Baba was an Indian mystic and spiritual leader who publicly declared himself the Avatar (God in human form). On January 31, his followers, both in India and abroad, celebrate Meher Baba Remembrance Day, referred to as Amartithi.

Meher Baba was born on February 25, 1984 in Poona. His parents were of Iranian descent and practiced Zoroastrianism. The spiritual transformation of Merwan Sheriar Irani (Meher Baba’s birth name) began when he was 19 years old.

He contacted five spiritual figures (Sai Baba of Shirdi, Upasni Maharaj, Hazrat Babajan, Tajuddin Baba and Narayan Maharaj), whom he called the five “Perfect Masters”. Meher Baba specifically credited Upasni Maharaj with helping him integrate mystical experiences with normal consciousness. After spending seven years with Upasni, he began to attract his own followers. It was them who named him Meher Baba, which can be translated as “Compassionate Father”.

In 1922, Meher Baba and his mandali (followers) established a community in Mumbai. The next year, they founded an ashram near Ahmednagar and named it Meherabad, which means “Garden of Blessing”. Meherabad became the center of Meher Baba’s missionary work. During the next decade, he opened a dispensary, hospital and school at Meherabad, which were free and open to people of all faiths and castes.

In 1925, Meher Baba began a period of self-imposed silence, which would last until his death. At first, he used slate and chalk to communicate, then an alphabet board. In the 1950s, he developed a unique sign language that was interpreted by his mandali. In 1927, he also gave up writing in addition to speaking.

In the 1930s, Meher Baba traveled to Europe and the United States, where he established his first group of Western followers. During his journey, he met with a number of Western artists and celebrities, such as Mary Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks, Ernst Lubitsch, Maurice Chevalier, Tom Mix, Boris Karloff, Tallulah Bankhead, Charles Laughton, and Gary Cooper.

In the 1940s, Meher Baba mostly worked with people he called masts, “intoxicated with God”. In the 1950s, he opened two spiritual centers outside India, one in the United States and the other in Australia. During his stay in the United States, he was injured in two serious automobile accidents. Meher Baba’s injuries severely limited his ability to move and caused him great pain until the end of his life.

In 1954, Meher Baba publicly declared himself the Avatar, the incarnation of God in human form, According to Meher Baba’s teachings, the Avatar appears on Earth every 700–1400 years and is brought down to human consciousness by the five Perfect Masters. He claimed that before him Zoroaster, Rama, Krishna, Biddha, Jesus and Muhammad all had fulfilled the role of the Avatar.

Meher Baba died on January 31, 1969 in Meherabad. His last words (or rather gestures) were “Do not forget that I am God.” Eventually, his followers began to commemorate his death anniversary, referring to it as Amartithi (deathless day). Every January 31, thousands of mandali gather in Meherabad to honor the memory of their spiritual leader.

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Category

Religious Holidays

Country

India

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Amartithi, Meher Baba Remembrance Day, death anniversary, religious observances, Meher Baba