June 26th, 2006
It was in 1986, and I was touring the country with a feminist bluegrass band (I’d do anything to be a professional musician). I started seeking because of a friend at the time who was a martial arts enthusiast and he exposed me to some philosophical, “seeking” books by people like Alan Watts and Joseph Campbell, (authors of books about things like “Eastern thinking” or meditation techniques). What this did for me was show that a lot of people are trying to break free of the mundane, day to day existence, even writing books about it - and I knew that I was one of these people.
One day, (March 17th, 1986 to be exact), after just finishing one of these books (this one was called “The Way of the Peaceful Warrior”, by Dan Millman), I had been so affected that I just lay down in the backyard of my parent’s house in Oakland CA, where I grew up and lived at the time. This was just before one of the band’s tours around the Country.
I sort of “placed my attention” into my head, and the next thing I knew it felt as if the top of my head had lifted up, and my peripheral vision - vertically - had been “activated” if you know what I mean! I had been a cigarette smoker at the time and had tried to quit but couldn’t - and I knew that at this moment that I was done with the addiction - and time showed I was right, and I didn’t even miss them! Also, for the next few months, I had these re-occuring dreams, (”bliss dreams” I called them), and they would involve this winding road through a big valley, or flatlands, and all around was open grassy meadow, and every few miles a small, broken down, one room house would be waiting for me, and each house was full of gifts and treasures, but the windows were broken and the houses needed repairs.
And high up above this valley was looming the most massive, beautiful mountain - and it kind of curved over at the top, so the flat surface at the top was angled almost upside-down - but on the surface were lots of little specks, and I would realize that these were people. And that they were in such bliss to be defying gravity - and all I knew was that I wanted to be there with them. I would often wake up in the middle of the night, believe it or not, actually smiling, even giggling with bliss. At the time, I had thought hat all of these experiences had come from this “Peaceful Warrior” book. One of the main topics in it was how this “seeking” man was a professional athlete and how he would get up at dawn and right out of bed would go running into the streets of Berkeley. I also started doing this to “celebrate” my new-found spirituality.
A few months later, I had quit the band, got a job at a coffee shop and met my first “Sahaja Yogi” - and was soon hearing my first recorded lecture by Sri Mataji. I can remember my first impression - it was that Sri Mataji was describing EXACTLY what I had experienced with the lifting of the top of my head - and that the “mechanism” of enlightenment was the 7 chakras and they would be repaired and you could ascend to the top of your own personal “mountain”. This explained my dreams of the houses and mountain.
I didn’t feel vibrations for a long time, but I guess you could say that I recognized the truth of Sahaja Yoga intellectually, by Sri Mataji’s talks.
This was in 1987. It took a while but I started to feel “vibrations” and my awareness began to expand. Then I really knew that this isn’t just the truth described, but the truth as in an active, living force because miracles and coincidences started to happen on the outside of my life as well as on the inside - I got into music again and even into a successful rock band, (we’re called “Counting Crows”) and got to tour the whole world this time!
One day, back in ‘96 - just before my marriage, Sri Mataji had asked me if I’d heard of a book called “The Way of the Peaceful Warrior”. (If ever I was to doubt Her, all I have to do is think of this moment and how shocked I was and I know that She’s for real) - I was so stunned, I said “Yes! It changed my life! Made me more active into jogging and more active and everything and I became more active!” (My wife still laughs at me because I was so naive to talk to Her so casually).
Meanwhile, Sri Mataji’s eyes got really big, and I took this to be surprise that I knew about this book, (I learned later that maybe She was destroying a negative effect that this book might have had on me). That evening, during a public program, Sri Mataji mentioned this book, and described how it’s a “horrible, misleading book” about getting up in the morning and torturing your body with over-exercise. I was amazed, and it somehow became obvious that the focus of the book was more on the body and brain than the Spirit. It also became obvious that it wasn’t the book that had given me the experience I’d had at the time - it was Kundalini, and Kundalini must have come up at the time I read the book not to “celebrate” the stupid book, but to protect me from going down the wrong path - not to mention bring me to Sahaja Yoga!!