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    Birth and Death
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Phiroz Mehta — A Special Guide

By Mary Easteal

A remarkable man
born in India, grew up
in Sri Lanka
of Zarathustrian parentage
travelled to these island shores
for graduate studies.
Science teaching was his choice,
a career in London’s Forest Hill.

How many schoolboys in puberty, too many to count,
imbibed their physics
from his masterful hands
until retirement.

But that was not all,
beyond the boundaries of career
here was a talented pianist
nearly pursuing music as first choice.
Further still he sought deep knowledge
at the heart of all the great spiritual
teachings of the world.

What it is to be truly human
was the quest.
Knowing we are more
than the sum of our parts
delving into the very heart of teachings
from different cultures of the world,
mystics of ancient times,
also Krishnamurti of this era.

What a store of wisdom grew,
purifying alchemy,
base metals into gold.

We who came
from far and wide
to Dilkusha House
his family home, sat at the feet
of this learned man
of inner wisdom.

He gave his talks
one weekend in two.
We called our varied number
‘the group’ and this still and deep thinker
‘our teacher’.
His reply came back “No, I’m not a teacher,
I am a bell-ringer, you know it all,
these words to share
to wake you up.”

These philosophical sessions
were as a golden thread which
linked all the great religions of the world,
the heart of them, their unity.
A string of pearls.

After more than four score years and ten
our gentle guide has now passed on and in peace.
We who remain are truly
grateful that our paths did cross
with such a giant.

Serendipity.

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