1259THE WEST LEARNS TO SING1931
That first day, many people came to meet Meher Baba. Among them were Maggie Barton, Kitty and Herbert's older sister Martha May Cluse, Horace Fleming (an artist), and a Japanese jujitsu teacher named Koizumi (who helped prepare vegetarian meals). Baba met them all individually and then stopped seeing visitors, deciding to have a private meeting with Herbert, Meredith, Kitty, Margaret and a few others. During this occasion, Paul Robeson records were played.
Meredith had impressed upon these "new devotees," as he put it, the importance of meditation, concentration and one-pointedness of mind, emphasizing earnestness and a serious, somber attitude with a minimum of talking when in the Master's presence. Consequently, they were reserved, despite Baba's warm welcome. Baba did not explain to them at the time that he preferred them to be frank and open-hearted. It was only the first night and the next morning they were to leave for Combe Martin.
Touching on the world situation, Baba remarked, "War is inevitable, and it will break out after seven months."
Pointing to Herbert, he explained, "You are to follow me and work in China under my direct orders."
Looking at Meredith, he explained, "You have work to do in Combe Martin. Spiritual centers are to be opened, especially in America, Turkey, Russia, Persia and England, and the Devonshire Retreat will be such a center."
Baba slept that night in Kitty's room, with Aga Ali near him on the floor. Chanji and Rustom stayed in Herbert's room; they had brought their bedrolls from India, according to Baba's instructions, and they slept on the floor.
May Cluse's teenage daughter Zilla told her Uncle Herbert that she would like to meet this "Indian." Herbert at first thought a girl of fifteen was too young to come into contact with the Master; however, he asked Baba the next morning at breakfast and Baba happily agreed to see her. Meanwhile it was still very early, and Baba decided to tiptoe into Zilla's room while she was sleeping soundly. Baba bent over her, and Zilla opened her eyes and stared at him. Neither spoke, they just smiled at each other. Outside Zilla's room, Baba turned to Kitty and remarked about Zilla, "I see all of her past and all of her future. She has great work to do for me. She must come to East Challacombe with you on Tuesday."