Monday, March 19, 2012

The Acid Test For Transformation

Where I grew up
As I reconnect with the pieces of my life in America, I witness the effects of the teachings from India.  The uncertainty and "scratchiness" of being around humans of all walks of life are gone.  I can be in the herd, outside the herd, alone, etc. and feel the depth of connection as a spark of the Divine.  It doesn't mean that we aren't an odd group with unfathomable actions and thoughts, but we are all tethered together whether we like it or not.

The acid test of my recent lessons was visiting my mother.  She is a reclusive, quiet being who has affected me by the unspoken--a glance, the space in between words, and the selective words of disapproval.  I just couldn't ever figure out how to get her approval even with top honors in everything that I pursued.  It was a mystery.  This silence and uncertainty inspired the inward questioning and seeking while in my early twenties--a dull and aching pain.  Was it hers or mine?

27 years later, I understand. Both of our "stories" and what they triggered in the unspoken conversation.   Going to visit her was like heading to the Incinerator Walk, but from the deepest levels of my human presence.  Did all the "work" and teachings from the Divine hold true even under this test?  Before going to India, I had experienced one visit that was seamless, but was it luck?  And I am not sure that I was breathing.

At 83, she takes care of the house and yard without any help (remarkable.)  The yard is on a half acre with lots of trees/plants and the house is 4 bedrooms.  Telephone, internet, driving, and television are not part of her life.  Reading and caring for the yard/house are the focus.  Looking over the photos from the past 6 months and discussing our shared interest (new for me) in photography was a good start.  We even moved on to discuss world issues, humanity, religion, and philosophy, but it was as two beings carrying on a discussion of discovery.  There was a genuine connection unfolding that was not disturbed by 47 years of lint.

"This stuff really works!"  How lovely to find no edges while being in all facets of humanity.  It is the place of peace that Gurudev had said was possible.  Are there words beyond gratitude, grace, Absolute Love, and Absolute Truth that can express the depth of my thankfulness.

While driving home at midnight, I decided to drive through some of my old stomping grounds and stopped for a slice of pizza in Berkeley.  While waiting for the pizza to cook, I talked to the beggars outside as easily as talking to my friends and family.  The truth of the thread continues.

Maple Tree where horses would hang out.

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