As the murshida of Sufism Reoriented, Dr. Carol Weyland Conner has been prolific in providing her students with experiences and explanations aimed at deepening their understanding and appreciation of being incarnate in this transformative season of Creation. She has prepared weekly classes and messages on Meher Baba’s work in this Avataric advent, on the unfolding of higher consciousness, and on the relationship between a student and their spiritual teacher. Responding to requests from Meher Baba centers in India and the United States, she has participated in a variety of public programs. Among her teaching materials are poems and plays which dramatize these same teachings in less expository forms.
Presentations at Meherabad, India
Each year at Meherabad the Avatar Meher Baba Trust holds an international conference called “Discovering the Avataric Treasure”. A period or phase of Meher Baba’s life is selected as the focus of the gathering, and over the two days of the conference participants offer presentations about aspects of Meher Baba’s work in that period. The program started in 2010 with Baba’s childhood, and in 2020 it featured the years 1949-1952.
Murshida Conner was invited to participate in this ongoing program by her friend Gokaran Shrivastava, the librarian at Meherabad. Gokaran is one of the organizers of this annual conference, and after seeing Sufism’s presentations at the 2012 East-West Gathering Commemoration program, which he hosted, he asked if she would consider contributing an essay to their next “Avataric Treasure” event. Every year since she has written one or two essays for Gokaran on an aspect of the Beloved’s life that is up for discussion at the conference. The essays are presented at the conference as Power-Point slide presentations and read to the audience by one of Murshida’s students.
As an intimate friend of Meher Baba’s from their earliest years, Dr. Abdul Ghani Munsiff was an active participant in key phases of Meher Baba’s work. This essay explores the unique role Ghani played both as a friend and as a “tool” in Meher Baba’s work, focusing on the New Life.
An essay on Meher Baba’s first meeting with Ivy O. Duce at Meherazad, India. It was at this meeting in 1948 that Meher Baba appointed Ivy Duce to be the murshida of his reoriented sufism.
The years 1946–1948 include Meher Baba’s important shift in residence from Meherabad, the center of his work for more than twenty years, to a new site about twelve miles away, which he would name “Meherazad”.
At the same time Elizabeth Patterson and Norina Matchabelli were creating what would become Meher Baba’s enduring “home in the West” in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Meher Baba established two new homes, one in the East and one in the West, which he developed simultaneously, though independently, to serve the evolving needs of his universal work.
Presentations at the MBUSC – Byramangala, India
In 1994 Murshid James S. B. MacKie of Sufism Reoriented was invited by K. K. Ramakrishnan and the members of the board of the Meher Baba Universal Spiritual Center in Byramangala, India, to inaugurate the new “Central Structure” at the center. Founded by Meher Baba in 1939, MBUSC-Byramangala is the Avatar’s first and most important universal center.
At that time Murshid MacKie promised the trustees of the Universal Center that Sufism Reoriented would aid their efforts to adorn the interior of the new Central Structure with a representation of Meher Baba’s Divine Theme. Twenty-five years later, in the fall of 2019 that promise was fulfilled when versions of the murals from Sufism’s Sanctuary in Walnut Creek, California, were modified for Indian audiences, printed in India, and installed.
This culminated a challenging project involving technical and logistical issues that included
preparing the walls of the open-air Central Structure to safeguard the murals from the high humidity, high temperatures, and monsoon rains of the Indian climate
shipping needed materials not found in India from Hong Kong and the U.S. and negotiating their way through customs; and
identifying highly skilled craftspeople to meticulously install the murals.
With the completion of this work, the Byramangala trustees invited Murshida Conner to join them in India on the weekend of November 30–December 1, 2019, to inaugurate the unveiling of the sixteen Divine Theme murals and serve as keynote speaker at the celebration.
Murshida accepted this invitation and presented two talks.
(Versions with Hindi, Telegu, and Kannada summary translations are available below.)