library stories

“I want the peach!”

The Peach

from Love of the God-Man by James Steinberg

In July 1978, Avatar Adi Da Samraj invited the children of Mound Builder Free School (as the pre-school and elementary school of young devotees in the Way of Adidam was then known) to a devotional occasion at the Mountain Of Attention Sanctuary in Northern California. The children were to sing and offer gifts to Avatar Adi Da and then receive Prasad (Blessed Gifts) from Him. Through this simple ceremony of giving and receiving gifts, the devotee enacts the principle of life and devotional practice, which is mutual sacrifice, or service.

During the occasion, Avatar Adi Da was Radiant and obviously delighted by the simple devotional energy of the children. As the children chanted, they approached Avatar Adi Da one by one and offered the gifts they had prepared for Him. When all of the children had given their gifts, Avatar Adi Da began to distribute to the children the Prasad, Gifts of fruit He had Blessed. He carefully chose a piece of fruit for each child from the basket just below His chair, and handed it to the child.

As the children began to approach Avatar Adi Da to receive His Gifts, an eight-year-old girl turned to her practice guide (who was accompanying her on this occasion) and whispered “I want the peach!” The guide looked in the basket and saw there was only one very large, juicy peach perched invitingly at the top of the basket of fruit. She whispered back to the girl that she should accept whatever was Given to her and be happy. The girl nodded her head and returned her attention to Avatar Adi Da.

Just then, Avatar Adi Da reached over and picked up the peach with His left hand. The girl and her guide watched and He turned it slowly in His left hand while He continued to offer Gifts with His right hand. A dozen children stood ahead of the girl, who by now was sure that she would not receive the peach.

But Avatar Adi Da continued to distribute fruit with one hand while turning the large ripe peach in the other. When it was our eight-year-olds turn, she and her guide approached Avatar Adi Da together to receive His Prasad. The young girl bowed to Him and held out her hands as she looked up into His face. He suddenly extended His left hand and gave her the peach! She stared in wide-eyed amazement at her Heart-Master for a few moments and then bowed.

When she returned to her seat, she looked at her guide and gave her a big smile. She had been given more than a peach—she had felt the Blessing of Avatar Adi Da Samraj and felt the mystery of Who He Is.

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