I am reposting a couple of blog entries from an old blog, from a few years ago-This is an important story of a benchmark in my Spiritual Journey. Current retrospect to follow.
Life after Darshan with Maharaji April 26, 2013
It’s been three months since my dream about Neem Karoli Baba*. It seems much longer, because I have learned a great deal, about him, about Hanuman, about Ram Dass, Krishna Das, Bhagavan Das, and Hindu deities. I have learned about kirtan, about bhakti, about devotion to one’s guru, satsang, harmonium playing, and the over-the-top, ego-filled, sexualized bad examples of the Americanization of Hindu practices. It feels like the blink of an eye, and I still feel like an infant. The dream I had of Neem Karoli Baba has continued to propel me towards…what? I do not know. Towards him. Towards a more mature Spiritual nature, towards real service, towards more awareness of dreams and their importance. Toward myself, toward the future, toward love.
After that dream about Maharaji*, in which he smacked me on the back and “all negativity fell away” and I turned and looked into his eyes…I felt that something very real and very important had happened to me. I just followed one foot in front of the other, or rather one book, one video and one website in front of the other. I also had another dream. In it, Ram Dass appeared with a book. He kept pushing it toward me, saying “Number Four”…and he kept saying a word that started with a D. I thought maybe he was saying DAKSI, which is a Cherokee word, but I was unsure of what the word was and I couldn’t figure out if he was calling me that, or saying something in reference to the book he was trying to give me.
When I awoke, I looked through all the books I had on Maharaji now, and found that the fourth chapter of Be Love Now (by Ram Dass) was called Darshan. Ah, the D word. So I read that chapter, which helped me understand what had happened in the first dream. Darshan with a guru is a few moments of his one-to-one time, spent enabling you to see through his eyes.
Darshan is meeting on the “soul plane”. A “meeting of hearts”, “merging of souls, sharing the moment with complete awareness, compassion, love and energy”. It was a gift of connection from Maharaji, and Ram Dass coming to me in my 2nd dream helped me understand that. I don’t know how it works, but I do now, and always have trusted that when I have certain kinds of dreams the information is very important.
I’ve been reading “Miracle of Love” which is stories about Neem Karoli Baba compiled by Ram Dass. This brings me just a bit closer to him, hearing all the endearing stories that others tell. I’ve been listening to the Hanuman Chalisa’s a lot, trying to learn the words, and connecting via the internet where I can with those on a similar path of Bhakti, devotion to Hanuman, or devotion to my Guru, “Baba*”.
Satsang is the word for community in Hindu, and while the internet isn’t the best community, since I’m over 3 hours from the Bay Area, most of the time it is my ONLY community. I even got to “live stream” a webcast from a center in the Bay Area that was having a Hanuman Birthday celebration and singing the Chalisas all day long. That was really kind of fun, and allowed me to at least see into what others do. This center has a different main guru, but they had many photos of Hanuman on their wall, as well as a photo of Neem Karoli Baba.
I love the chanting and singing, and I wish that there was a group near by that I could get together with in real-time and sing. I am in a very rural, and politically and religiously conservative area of California. Yes, that exists, and somehow, where ever I live, I manage to be in the un-hipest, most conservative places. There must be a reason.
I am now toying with the idea of purchasing a harmonium (the small portable pump organ type thing like Krishna Das and others play), and attending a workshop, even though I really have little desire to sing in front of others. I can strum a few chords on the guitar (I learned how to read music in High School but have forgotten) and have some singing experience (also from High School-Chorale) but I’m not one to want to be a rock star or even lead a church group…I’m just the one who sings at the top of my lungs happily in my car.
This “devotional yoga” (Bhakti) and Kirtan (singing) are definitely up my ally. If someone would have told me there was a spiritual practice where I could just sing and shine love and not do ablutions, or follow rules, I would have signed up a long time ago…well, not really, because I have NEVER been one to grovel, or give up control, submit, in ANY way, and when I was younger, doing “devotional practice” to a guru would have been totally out of the question. Ah but one’s ego gets smaller and gentler as one ages 🙂
If I were in a room with the living Neem Karoli Baba I would not hesitate to serve him, or to touch his feet, or bow to him now. I am coming to the personal conclusion that Jesus is not the only one who knew everything, and could “wow” us little humans with his wisdom. I believe in Maharaji 100%. Now this is NOT like me, to fawn after some religious guy, but then again, this demonstrates the power of the connection with this Being in my dream. I can only imagine that if, like Ram Dass, I had actually been in his presence, my mind also would have completely blown a gasket.
Now I really understand how people feel about Jesus. When I was thirteen, my brother took me to a Pentecostal church, which I deemed immediately as a fanatical cult, but I was also sucked in, and it took me three years to extract myself. I guess all religions have their fanatics. But now I really GET the feeling of love and acceptance that people feel with Jesus. I never felt that way about him (Sorry Jesus) but I feel that unquestioningly with Neem Karoli Baba.
Where this path is going to lead me, I have no idea. Astrologically apparently we are in for some very big change soon. There are some changes happening within my family that caused me to look at myself, and my social situation, and I realize I am fairly isolated from the rest of humanity, so how I will “serve others”, or connect with a satsang, or sing with others I don’t know. All I know is if it’s supposed to happen it will.
I’ve been at my current home for two years now. When I moved here I was still healing from a long illness, and I definitely had the impression that the entire Universe was telling me just to sit still. So here I sit. I feel that the time is coming for me to stop sitting, to move, to do, to interact, to connect…I’m much healthier now, and I have learned a lot spiritually, so I feel that I’m preparing for something. Maybe that’s sitting still. Maybe that’s doing. I don’t know. What exactly IT will be, I have no clue. I am pretty sure however that it WILL have something to do with Maharaji, and it is coming…I trust the Divine wisdom leading me through this journey I am on, and I trust that my connection with Maharaji is real!
Stay tuned for an update on my “Druid with a Guru” path…
And more to come about what it means to be an American Druid…Coming soon…
*Please note that in this blog any reference to “Baba”, “Babaji”, “Maharaji” or “Maharaj-ji” are all references to Neem Karoli Baba.