Born : - New York,USA
Died : Fall 1968 - USA
Parents : Harold & Helena Williams,Srn.
( Born in the West Indies )
Beryl distributed Baba's photographs in America which were sent from India by Baba's
sister Mani Irani.
Bernice Ivory was
Almost one thousand people had been invited, including a number of local Negroes. Those present noticed that whenever a black visitor entered the Barn, Baba always rose from his seat and went to greet them. One black woman who met Baba for the first time on this occasion was Beryl Williams of New York.
Beryl had first heard of Baba in November 1951 from Filis Frederick, who was a close friend. She invited Beryl to hear Norina deliver a lecture on Baba in Carnegie Hall entitled "Divine Love is the Solution." Beryl, who had always had an inclination toward spirituality, was attracted by Norina's talk. The audience had been informed that Baba was to come to the West in the spring, and if they wished to be notified they should leave their name and address, which Beryl did.
The following is Beryl Williams' description of her first meeting with Baba at the Barn on May 17th:
Delia opened the door for me and said, "Baba, this is Beryl." As I hesitated at the entrance, Baba rose from his chair and stood with outstretched open arms to me. The next thing I knew I was weeping my heart out on that beloved shoulder at the joy of having found my home at last. Baba left no room for doubt as to where I belonged in his welcome. I received the unmistakable impression that it was Baba who had drawn me to him in his own way, particularly when in the course of the interview, he suddenly turned to Adi and spelled out on the board, "It was worth it," while I happily nodded and babbled foolishly.
After giving me some personal instructions of what he wanted me to do, Baba looked deep into my heart before enjoining on me the simple command, "Leave everything to me – leave it to me." So simple, but oh how difficult for a willful nature. Yet I felt a great burden lifted from my heart, which until that moment I had been unaware of even carrying. I knew then what it was to be at peace with one's self.
Beryl is standing behind Henry Kashouti ( left)
MEHER BABA also gave his touch to others, such as Jean Adriel (who, because she had been ill, had not been able to come to Myrtle Beach), Barbara Mahon, Beryl Williams, Evelyn Blackshaw and Annarosa Karrasch. Dr. Audrey Kargere, who first heard of Baba through Norina in the late 1940s in New York, came with her fiancée, Prince Robert Von Brancovan.
A Negro lady, Beryl Williams, brought her sister, Bernice Ivory, age twenty-nine, and Bernice's little boy, Carlton, three. Baba took the boy on his lap and held him. Beryl had always been a seeker and would try to talk to Bernice about metaphysics and different Eastern Masters. Bernice was never interested, but after Beryl met Baba in 1952, Bernice perceived an unmistakable change in her sister. "I could feel this change in her," she said. "Beryl would talk incessantly about Baba."
She gave Bernice a picture of him, and one night while meditating on the photograph, Bernice saw a golden light come from it. It filled her home and touched her sleeping family. She was convinced of Baba's divinity and had many further experiences of Baba's presence. It was for this reason that Bernice was afraid of meeting Baba in person. "I thought I was going to disintegrate," she remembered. Then Baba peeked at her and Carlton from around the screen, and his eyes twinkled in recognition. "Oh, he knows me," Bernice cried. "Baba, you know me!" and she fell into his arms.
Filis Frederick later wrote of this afternoon in New York:
One by one or in small groups, the people now came in to meet the Master. Each one was introduced to Baba with a few descriptive words which Baba always likes to hear. His radiant smile as each new soul entered the room, his warm embrace or extended hand, his compassionate interest in each and every individual's problems, which he knew without words or explanations, and his parting prasad of a grape to each one as they left, made an indelible impression on those fortunate to be in the same room. Above all, his silent, wordless communication of love from heart to heart, proved again and again, if proof were needed, that here indeed was the living embodiment of Love Divine. The flash of recognition in the heart, the pulse of love, seemed almost visible as it jumped from Soul to soul, from the free Shivatma to the jivatma in bondage. Love indeed can be silent, and yet, transform the world to its image.
Forty-four of Meher Baba's "doves" (as he called them) were to make the cross-country journey with him from New York to Myrtle Beach to California. This had come about after Beryl Williams, in one of her letters, wrote to Mani that they would "love to fly with the Avatar." The letter was read to Baba, and he gave his permission for those who could afford to go. Those going gathered at the Delmonico Hotel at 6:45 A.M., on Tuesday, July 24th. There was a light drizzle of rain. Fred Winterfeldt checked off everyone's name, and they were taken to Newark airport in two buses.
ON THE MORNING of July 26th, Baba walked to the Guest House and was greeted by five of the women staying in the nearby Lantern Cabin: Filis Frederick, Adele Wolkin, Bili Eaton, Beryl Williams and Sylvia Gaines. Baba appeared tired, and Ivy Duce said, "Baba, you worked all night ..."
Baba put his hands to his head in an anguished way and said, "Yes, I worked all night. You have no idea. I have the burden of the universe on my head. I am very unhappy this morning."
A few moments later, he called for everyone, but many were missing, eating breakfast or sleeping at this early hour. Baba gestured to those present, crowded in the hallway outside his room, "I wanted to give you all a message, but you were not all here. Those who are absent may see me in seven hundred years!"
There was a mad rush to gather everyone before Baba. When Beryl Williams appeared, Baba gestured, "I thought you were dead!"
John Bass and Ben Hayman had been out for a stroll. Baba remarked to them, "I thought you had died – you (John), not Ben! Ben and I are young; but you will die first because you are older than Ben."
Baba stated to the group: "You have all spent so much money to come here, to be with me, but there is no time now with the many appointments. But tomorrow, at Ojai, I want to be with you all, eat with you, play with you, fight with you!"
EARLY in the morning on Sunday, August 5th, Filis Frederick, Adele Wolkin, Bili Eaton and Beryl Williams were summoned to Baba's room. After talking with them a while, he called in Ivy Duce and Don Stevens and informed them of his wish that they publish all the messages given out on the trip, within five months. (It was more than a year, however, before Ivy was able to publish Life At Its Best.)
When Beryl Williams, a black woman from New York, came in, instead of embracing her on one side only, Baba embraced her on both sides and asked her to sit next to him on the sofa. As he did so, he glanced at Jane who, at that instant, felt her deep-rooted Southern Whites' prejudice against Blacks dissolve.
Baba further stated, citing Beryl Williams of New York:
I will now explain what cannot be explained. You should try your best to understand what cannot be understood.
Here is Beryl. You, Beryl, are the Infinite Ocean, but as a drop of that Ocean, you have three layers. You see, hear and smell, do this and do that, not from within, but through your eyes, your nose, your outer layers [five senses]. That which you see is from the outer layer of your Infinite Self of which you are the drop. Beryl does not see the Infinite through the outer layer of her senses. Beryl uses energy, becomes active and so forth. That is not you, you do not go anywhere, you are infinite. It is the drop that sees and moves, and as a drop you feel limitations. If your hand is cut off, your legs are cut off, you always feel that you are Beryl. You are not the hand, not the body; it is the mind that makes you think you are limited.
Baba called for a hat, a pillow, a pen, a box and a notebook, and continued the discourse:
Here is Beryl, the Infinite, in the shape of a hat. Beryl is unlimited, she is infinite. There is no end to her. But Beryl eats, drinks, does everything through these layers [five senses].
(Baba pointed to the notebook, pen and box on the pillow.) What is required is that Beryl, instead of doing things in this outer direction (crown of the hat), turns inwardly and sees everything as infinite. Just a turn (Baba turned the hat around inside out so that it opened to the opposite side), and she sees herself as infinite. If you drop one layer, there is another and so forth. You continue to see illusion through the layers. If you take a complete turn, you experience yourself as infinite. (Baba put the hat on to everyone's delight.)
Now, the point is, how should Beryl do this? It is impossible, because since millions of births she has formed the habit of looking in one direction. Just as when you are born, you see what is in front of you and continue to see it and take it for granted. The most you can do is through your own efforts or............
In the ensuing years, though correspondence with India was mostly banned, Kitty Davy and Beryl Williams were allowed to write to Mani and Mehera, and they would always add in their letters how much Ann Conlon wanted to meet Baba. Replies would come to the effect, "Baba realizes how much Ann wants to meet him and sends her his love."
In July, three close Western lovers also expired: Beryl Williams in New York and Warren Healy in Seattle, and Douglas Eve in England. In separate telegrams sent, Baba stated: "Beryl was and is mine forever," and "Warren's love for me was unique."
LETTER TO MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR.
Beryl Williams wrote this letter on May 12, 1956 inviting the Kings for Meher Baba's darshan. We do not know whether Reverend King responded.
TO BE AT PEACE WITH ONESELF
The interminable hours of travel were whiled away in wondering what kind of reception I'd receive; would Baba be pleased that I chose to run to Him or would He send me packing because I didn't wait in New York, as He'd suggested? Or, most unbearable of all, would He say that I don't belong to Him at all, that He's not the beloved of my heart, as I'd come to think of Him, and send me in search of some other master, or will I be allowed to follow Him to the ends of the earth if need be? The one certainty in all this mental clamor was that at the end of this journey Baba is awaiting me! Baba expects me!
Sarosh Irani met me at the bus terminal and immediately whisked me off to the "Center" where, as I stepped onto the porch of the Barn, I spied Baba through the screen door seated with a group of disciples around Him. Delia DeLeon opened the door for me and said, "Baba, this is Beryl." As I hesitated at the entrance, Baba rose from His chair and stood with outstretched arms to me. The next thing I knew I was weeping my heart out on that beloved shoulder at the joy of having found my home at last. Baba left no room for doubt as to where I belonged in His welcome.
Later, as I sat beside Him while He inquired about the trip and had I eaten lunch, etc., I received the unmistakable impression that it was Baba who had drawn me to Him in His own way, particularly when in the course of the interview He suddenly turned to Adi and spelled out on His board, "It was worth it," while I happily nodded and babbled foolishly. After giving me some personal instructions of what He wanted me to do, on His alphabet board, Baba looked deep into my heart before enjoining on me the simple command, "...leave everything to me — leave it to me." So simple, but oh how difficult for a willful nature! Yet, I felt a great burden lifted from my heart which until that moment I'd been unaware of even carrying. I knew then what it was to be at peace with oneself. Finally, Baba introduced me to Elizabeth Patterson and told me I was to remain in Myrtle Beach as His guest. He explained that Mrs. Patterson would make all arrangements concerning my stay and then my return to New York.
Ann Conlon recalls ;
I was living in New York then, an hour by train north of Manhattan. Almost every Monday night I took the train into the city to go to the Monday night Baba meeting. It wasn't so much that I enjoyed having someone read to me at those meetings, it was the people who were there, who had met Meher Baba and could tell me what he was like. People like Beryl Williams who would go to a coffee shop after the meetings and tell stories about Baba until it was time for me to run for the 1 a.m. train back to Westchester. Precious times, and also a wonderful learning experience. Beryl could tell me what Baba did in certain situations and also why. I absorbed more of who Baba was from her stories than I ever could from books.