40621956 TRIP TO THE WEST1956
Even this is a dream — your sitting with me. The noise of the buses and street cars, this place, the whole city, all of this is nothing but a dream.
Suppose tonight in a dream, you see Baba sitting beside you and explaining, "Don't get entangled in all of this, it is nothing but a dream," then you would question me, saying, "Baba, how could it be a dream? I have so many joys and sorrows. I see so many people around me. I see you. How could it be a dream?" The next day, you wake up and you realize that Baba appeared to you in a dream and said it was but a dream.
Even now, at this moment, I tell you that you are dreaming. But how does your mind react? You say, "Baba is with us, how could everything be a dream?" Then I say: "When you realize Reality, when you are wide awake after Realization, you will realize all that I said is true — that it was all nothing but a dream."
Try to make the best of this contact with me by loving me more and more.
Dante Cardella's wife, Colleen, kept watching the clock, as Baba had said he would only stay 45 minutes. But Baba pointed to a nonexistent watch on his wrist and shook his head, "No," telling her not to be concerned.
Baba remarked, "I am the Infinite Ocean; those who drown themselves in the Ocean will get the Pearl."
Baba embraced Dante, and then, one by one, each person came to Baba, bearing a flower for him. To some, Baba handed rose petals to eat as prasad. Later, Baba commented, "Over half the group loves me." Baba went through the apartment, sanctifying it, before saying goodbye, and was driven back to the hotel.
Dante Cardella had been encouraging his group to store caches of food and water up in the mountains to prepare for the coming "day of doom." On hearing this, Baba remarked to Fred Winterfeldt, "No one will be saved except by the grace of God!"
Reproduced below is a letter Don Stevens wrote at this time to Mani in India, which aptly summed up Baba's visit thus far:
Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel
August 1, 1956
Can you think of Mr. Beethoven progressing creatively through one of his symphonies: now lightly, delicately, rapidly; now sonorously and with slow dignity; sometimes loudly, sometimes softly; the violins carrying the melody, and then again, the horns; accelerating to a climax, decrescending to muted delicacy.