In commemoration of the one-year anniversary of the Thomas Fire that struck in December 2017, Meher Mount is offering dhuni sticks from the fallen twigs of Baba’s Tree to Meher Baba centers and groups in the US.
But first, these dhuni sticks need to be harvested.
Plan now to help with The Great Dhuni Stick Harvest Weekend at Meher Mount on Saturday and Sunday, January 12-13, 2019.
The dhuni is a “sacred fire” in which Meher Baba’s followers throw attachments, symbolized by a stick of wood, into the fire.
The Great Dhuni Stick Harvest
Meher Mount will be open for two days to welcome volunteers who want to be part of this dhuni harvest. Pick a time that works for you and join the team. You can fit your volunteer time to your schedule.
Be part of the team that helps Meher Mount share the branches and twigs from Baba’s Tree - in the form of dhuni sticks - with other Meher Baba groups around the US.
DATE: Saturday, January 12, 2019
TIME: 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
PLACE: Meher Mount, 9902 Sulphur Mountain Road, Ojai
DATE: Sunday, January 13, 2019
TIME: 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
PLACE: Meher Mount, 9902 Sulphur Mountain Road, Ojai
WORK TO BE ACCOMPLISHED
Harvest Sticks from Baba's Tree
There’s a pile of branches and small limbs outside the canopy of Baba’s Tree. These small branches will be harvested and cut into dhuni-sized sticks. Any larger limbs - that are straight enough and long enough - will be set aside to create future walking sticks.
Package Dhuni Sticks for Sharing
Help pack the dhuni sticks into boxes that can be shipped to various Meher Baba centers and groups in the US.
Mulch Remaining Wood to Help Baba’s Tree Regenerate
Any twigs, branches, leaves and wood debris left after the harvest, will be mulched and spread around Baba’s Tree, both for moisture retention and nourishment for the tree.
Support the Team
Volunteers are needed to set up and take down for lunch, take photos to document the event, and provide general support help.
The cool, California winter weather is perfect for doing these needed tasks at Meher Mount. The days cool off quickly, and sometimes there are light winds off the ocean that can bring a chill to the air.
WHAT TO BRING
Bring layers, including a windbreaker, as the temperature changes throughout the day
Wear work clothes and sturdy, close-toed shoes that can get muddy and dirty
Bring a hat, work gloves if you have them, and sunglasses
If you have pruning shears or loppers, mark your name on them and please bring them
Please bring your own lunch and water
If you are coming from out-of-the area, staying at Meher Mount is not possible, even camping. There are nearby camp grounds and motels in Santa Paula and Ojai. See Area Information.
NO-HOST DINNER - SATURDAY, JANUARY 12, 2019
For those who are interested, there is a no-host dinner at Boccali's restaurant in Ojai on Saturday, January 12, 2019, at 5:30 p.m. Please bring cash. The bill is totaled with tax and tips added, and then divided evenly between the members of the group.
WHAT DOES THE DHUNI SYMBOLIZE?
The dhuni “symbolizes the fire of Baba’s divine love. That love consumes everything, and if anyone is brave enough to throw themselves into the fire, they are consumed, their false self is burnt away, and what is left is the Real Self, and we call this God-Realization,” explained Eruch Jessawala, Meher Baba’s close disciple. (That’s How It Was, pp. 339-340)
The dhuni is a means of remembering Meher Baba. “Baba told us to light dhuni, so when we light it in obedience to His wishes, we are remembering Him.”
The piece of wood symbolized some attachment “which was a hindrance in our journey to God. Each was to throw the piece of sandalwood in the fire with the thought that that attachment would be consumed.
“When we take a piece of sandalwood and throw it in the fire, that will not automatically burn up one of our attachments, but if we think about Baba, if we sincerely dedicate ourselves to becoming His, then indeed we may start a fire in ourselves which is far greater than the fire we see in the dhuni.”
Meher Baba initiated the dhuni in 1925 in Meherabad, India. He was approached by village farmers during a drought, seeking His blessings for rain. Meher Baba called for a dhuni to be lit, and soon after, clouds gathered and it began to rain.
Later, Meher Baba instructed the men mandali (close disciples) to start lighting the dhuni every month onward from December 12, 1941. This tradition continues today in Meherabad, home of His Tomb Shrine. Additionally, many Meher Baba groups around the world light a dhuni on the 12th of the month and/or during special gatherings devoted to Meher Baba.
TO REQUEST DHUNI STICKS FOR YOUR GROUP
Meher Mount would like share these small pieces of wood from this place of pilgrimage, sanctified by His Presence, with those whose hearts are aligned toward Him. For those who cannot come to Baba’s mountain, these dhuni sticks may bring a bit of Meher Mount to them.
If you haven’t already been contacted by Meher Mount about receiving dhuni sticks, please send an email to Meher Mount with your contact information.
It seems fitting that each of these sticks is a gift from Meher Baba and from His tree through His fire and returning to His fire.
If you have questions, suggestions or comments, please contact Meher Mount at firstname.lastname@example.org.