1439THE WEST LEARNS TO SING1932
Like most people caught up in maya, the Hollywood celebrities' understanding of true spirituality, or of what Meher Baba's Avatarhood really meant, lacked much depth.
On Thursday, 2 June 1932, Baba went to Paramount Studios again and met Maurice Chevalier, 43, who was making Love Me Tonight with Jeanette MacDonald. Tallulah Bankhead was there and ran to Baba, hugging and kissing him. Chevalier shook hands with Baba and said what a pleasure and honor it was to meet him. When informed that Baba had been on silence for the past seven years, Chevalier commented, "I don't have that kind of will power."
Later that afternoon, Mary Pickford came to see Baba for a private interview at 3:30 and meditated in Baba's presence for five minutes. Baba, Meredith, Chanji and Quentin were driven later to Santa Monica by director and producer Ernst Lubitsch, a "very fine and sincere man," and had tea with him at his house. (Rom Landau had written letters of introduction for Quentin to Lubitsch and Von Sternberg.)
In the evening Baba went with Quentin to Tallulah Bankhead's residence for dinner, and also to meet Greta Garbo, 26. However, Garbo telephoned at the last minute to say she was not well enough to come. Baba was openly disappointed at not meeting her, as he had said that Garbo was the "most spiritual" of the Hollywood stars and had been a yogi in a previous lifetime.
That night Baba took everyone to Grauman's Chinese Theater where he had been invited by the manager Sidney Grauman. Baba enjoyed the variety acts that preceded the film, especially the performance of the comedian Will Mahoney. Greta Garbo's latest film Grand Hotel was playing and Baba praised her performance.
Baba granted private interviews on the 3rd. One of those who met Baba several times during this trip was Gavin Arthur, 31. Arthur shared a deep interest in astrology with Marc Jones. He had established a utopian community of "free-thinkers" on some sand dunes near the ocean. He and a few other "dunites" were brought by Roderick White of Santa Barbara, a noted violinist who knew Malcolm and Jean from New York. Arthur invited Baba to visit the community and Baba agreed, but due to lack of time was unable to go.
Sam Cohen, 31, of Brooklyn, New York, also met Baba at the Knickerbocker reception. Sam was a seeker who had long been interested in spirituality and the Path. He had joined the Theosophists before moving to California, where he first heard about Baba. Sam recalled:
When I entered the room, I saw a very happy and smiling person seated in front of me. The impression was of consummate graciousness and love combined. His Holiness merely clasped my hand and gazed at me. The hand clasp of a Master is not just a hand clasp nor is his gaze just a looking at you, but by his touch and look he thins the "veil" and sometimes completely removes the veil which separates the man from divinity.