Meher Baba copyright 1987 Charlie Mills

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1568PORTOFINO1933

"In Europe, as on other continents, there are holy places connected to great spiritual work. The four centers of Europe are St. Mark's in Venice, a place on the Ligurian Coast of Italy, Assisi and Avila. I have now visited and revisited them all. From their holy grounds have sprung many saints!"

Herbert was ordered to return to Avila in ten days to visit this place, and sit on the same rock on which Baba sat every day.

Baba's disclosure that Avila was one of the four main spiritual centers in Europe and he had visited it in the ancient past was a surprise to them, as Baba had never before mentioned that he wished in particular to visit Avila. He had left the arrangements of their Spanish trip to them. It was their London travel agent who suggested stopping at Avila on their way to Madrid!

They left for Madrid the same day, arriving at 10:30 that night, and went to the Hotel Principe Don Juan, at Calle de Recoletes. Baba had informed the men, "The rest of our time in Spain will be pure rest and relaxation. It will be a holiday."

Baba wished to come in contact with the masses, so each day they would stroll along the crowded streets of Madrid. The air was clear and bracingly cool, and the sun was brilliant. Baba particularly enjoyed standing among the crowds in the central square of the city, called Puerta del Sol — Gate of the Sun. He came to this square several times every day.

Despite his European clothing and beret, all the Spaniards would turn and stare at Baba as if drawn to something they could not resist. Baba explained to his companions why the Spanish people reacted thus, "It is due to the internal work I am doing, as I move about quite unnoticed at other times."

At night on the 25th, they went to a rather seedy cabaret that was frequented by prostitutes and the like, yet there were colorful gypsy flamenco dancers on stage whom Baba enjoyed watching. He was no doubt also working for the welfare of this class of humanity in unseen ways. Baba and the group then went to see the movie King Kong, starring Fay Wray.

As they were walking back to their hotel, the local Spaniards turned again to look at Baba as he strode by them on the sidewalk, and some actually followed him out of curiosity.

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