A CELEBRATION OF DIVINE LOVE, UNITY & ONENESS
"All Are One" is a day of celebration – in words and music – of Divine love, unity and oneness. All are invited to attend this free event.
Beads on One String: Meher Baba & Vedanta
The day's program starts with a discussion of “Beads on One String: Meher Baba & Vedanta” by Dr. Ward Parks, a scholar of Meher Baba's words. Avatar Meher Baba declared that He would bring the world's religions together "like beads on one string." 
One of the most important of those "beads" is Vedanta, one of the great schools of Hindu thought and tradition. It is celebrated for having first stated the principle that the soul is one with God.
Ward's talk will explore Meher Baba's message of unity as it relates to Vedanta. He will give a basic introduction to Vedanta and explore some of the commonalities between this great tradition and Meher Baba’s teachings.
It is based on the Vedas, the sacred scripture of India. Vedanta affirms the oneness of existence, the divinity of the soul and the harmony of all religions. Vedanta is one of the world's most ancient spiritual philosophies and one of its broadest.
Songs of Love to the Beloved
After a potluck lunch, there is a musical program featuring songs to the Divine Beloved. Many of the songs were written and composed by Ward Parks. He has written more than 400 songs and ghazals (a poetic form consisting of rhyming couplets and a refrain, each line sharing the same meter).
Program - Saturday, October 7, 2017
- 11:00 a.m. - Talk on "Meher Baba & Vedanta" by Dr. Ward Parks
- 12:30 p.m. - Potluck Lunch
- 2:30 p.m. - Concert "Songs of Love to the Beloved" led by Dr. Ward Parks
- 4:00 p.m. - Tea
- 5:00 p.m. - Close
The event is free and is open to the public.
About Dr. Ward Parks
Dr. Ward Parks is an author and one of the foremost scholars on the writings of Avatar Meher Baba, an Indian spiritual master (1894-1969) who declared himself to be God in human form.
In addition to his editing work, Dr. Parks gives multi-day, intensive seminars and talks on the writings of Meher Baba.
Ward first heard of Meher Baba in 1970 when he was a freshman at Harvard University. He made his first pilgrimage to Meher Baba's home in India in 1972.
He earned his BA in English Literature from Harvard University (1974) and a MA in English from Emory University (1977). His PhD in English Literature is from the University of Missouri.
Dr. Parks was a tenured associate professor of medieval studies for 10 years, specializing in Old English at Louisiana State University at Baton Rouge.
His most important academic book is Verbal Dueling in Heroic Narrative: The Homeric and Old English Traditions, published by Princeton University Press in 1990. He has also published around 35 scholarly articles.
In 1993, Dr. Parks left the academic world to become a spiritual trainee in India at the Avatar Meher Baba Perpetual Public Charitable Trust. Since 1997, his principal work at the Trust has been editing Meher Baba's words.
His most recent editorial work is Meher Baba's Tiffin Lectures: As Given in 1926-1927 (Sheriar Foundation, 2017). It is a record of the dictations by Meher Baba over a 17-month period in the 1920s. It includes 30 full-color illustrations based on diagrams given at the time by Meher Baba.
Ward is also the editor or co-editor of the following Meher Baba books: In God's Hand (Beloved Archives, New Jersey, 2000); Infinite Intelligence (Sheriar Foundation, 2005); the Revised Sixth Edition of Discourses by Meher Baba (Sheriar Foundation, 2007); Early Messages to the West (Sheriar Foundation, 2009); and Divine Theme, second edition (Hyderabad: Meher Mownvani, 2010).
WHAT TO BRING FOR THE EVENT
- A dish or beverage to contribute to the potluck lunch. Your food should be ready to eat and not require additional prep or cooking. The group will be eating on the Topa Topa Patio which has limited prep and cooking facilities. Plates, cups, and eating utensils will be provided.
- A hat, close-toed shoes, and a jacket.
RELATED SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA EVENTS
- "Thursday Tiffin Lectures and the Spiritual Training of the Mandali - A Two-Day Workshop" by Dr. Ward Parks.
Day 1: Saturday, September 30, 2017 from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. (Lunch $15 donation)
Day 2: Sunday, October 1, 2017 from 11:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. (Lunch $15 donation)
Location: Avatar Meher Baba Center of Southern California, 1214 S. Van Ness Avenue, Los Angeles. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Telephone: 323-731-3737
 Bhau Kalchuri, Lord Meher: The Biography of the Avatar of the Age Meher Baba, Online Edition, pg. 1370, accessed September 3, 2017. This quote from Meher Baba was part of an interview with Him in a newsreel by the Paramount Film Company in London in 1932.
 "What Is Vedanta?" Vedanta Society of Southern California, accessed September 2, 2017.