Looking back now, my path to “A Course in Miracles” probably all were only available in 1969 when I accepted Jesus my personal Lord and Savior, under the influence of the Campus Crusade for Christ. However, after joining a Christian brotherhood of aspiring monks, where I was daily quizzed on how many Bible verses I’d memorized and could recite verbatim, I was totally confused by it all. Their version of reality just didn’t sit well with me. I felt such as for instance a parrot of Bible verses, that I didn’t even begin to comprehend, or the town crier that nobody desired to hear. Jesus would show me more, much more.
As divine synchronicity could have it, I ingested a hallucinogen that resulted in a near death experience your day after Christmas, 1970. When I was in the black void, with only the consciousness that “I Am”, George Harrison’s song My Sweet Lord began playing. That was my voice singing to God, not George’s! Soon a fantastic white light began appearing from the darkness, as my soul sang “I actually want to help you Lord “.Then somebody began to emerge from the light. This Holy One oscillated between masculine and feminine. As I’d been praying to Jesus, I thought it could be him, but without a beard. I began crying from the depths of my soul, since the Holy One communicated telepathically into my heart. I knew this Being to be only pure love. Then it absolutely was over. I was shot back into my body, hearing what to a fresh song telling me “it’s been quite a long time coming, it’s planning to be quite a long time gone.” How true that’s been.
Annually later, I saw the cover of Autobiography of a Yogi. It had been Paramahansa Yogananda who had come to me! Next came meeting Baba Ram Dass, who confirmed that I wasn’t crazy and stated that Yogananda had appeared to many young spiritual seekers on drugs. a course in miracles online retreats He also autographed my copy of Be Here Now. My next decade was spent as an aspiring yogi and practicing Yogananda’s Self-Realization Fellowship lessons and exercises, chanting, meditating and receiving initiation into Kriya yoga. Yogananda’s path and linage of gurus brought the essential clarity for me personally to comprehend Jesus and Christianity better. Yogananda also showed me the essential truth behind the oneness of religions. And he brought me to Babaji, the Mahavatar who sent him to America back the 1920s. Since I heard the name Babaji, I knew I knew Him. He and Jesus work together, behind the scenes, in the cosmic scheme of things. And Babaji was to be the next thing in my own ongoing spiritual evolution. However, I didn’t know at this time that He’d supposedly manifested a human anatomy again and was residing in the little village of Haidakhan, in northern India. That would come later, combined with the mystery and myth of the current manifestation.
After hearing Bhagavan Das sing, I bought a dotara and began chanting mantras to God daily. This simple, ancient two- stringed instrument is straightforward to play and lets one follow the drone sound into silence. At this point, I purchased my own personal devote the woods and met a person who’d lived with Babaji. He conducted a Vedic fire ceremony that Babaji had taught him to initiate my new abode. I questioned and grilled him repeatedly, asking if this new Babaji was the same entity Yogananda had written about. Yes, one and the same but peoples egos still question His true identity. Babaji’s new Kriya yoga was the road of truth, simplicity and love while performing karma yoga- work – and keeping one’s mind on God, through repetition of the ancient mantra Om Namaha Shivaya. Babaji stated that this mantra alone was stronger than a lot of atomic bombs and His 1-800 number. I began at this time seriously doing japa, or the repetition of the mantra on 108 rudraksha beads, to obtain this vibration into my sub consciousness. I also learned many ways to chant it on my dotara. With all this going on, I bought “A Course in Miracles” and began the daily lessons immediately. I tried to make sense of the Text but got nowhere; each sentence bogged me down and must be re-read over too many times to assimilate. I was just too young, I told myself. I was thirty-three. I’d deal with this specific Text later, someday, maybe.
Then following a year to be married, our house burns down- a real karmic fire ceremony. In the ashes, untouched by the fire, was an image of Babaji and His cymbals from Haidakhan. Speak about miracles! Next, was the unexpected news that people have a child coming, after losing everything? My marriage began to dissolve quickly after I fell twenty feet off a roof, breaking my body in twelve places. Surviving death, I was put back into college for 2 yrs to be retrained, while my ex-wife and son left for the Southwest. This is when each of my abandonment issues generated extreme drinking alone. After graduation, I left for India to see Babaji’s ashram, as He’d already left His physical body again, and to pray for help with my life in the most spiritual country on earth. I attended the 1995 Kumbha Mela festival with ten million others and lo and behold, who should appear? It had been Babaji, asking me if I was having fun. Yes, but I couldn’t talk to answer Him! Then He disappeared back into the crowd, leaving me blown away. Returning state side, I wound up following my ex- wife and son to the Southwest, where my next thing was peyote meetings with the Native Americans for several years to come. Everything I’d read and studied in the Course was evident on the medicine inside that tipi. God Is. I learned more in one night than I’d in years of studying metaphysical books. But I didn’t practice all I’d learned and I let my depressed ego, alcohol and abandonment issues take me nearer to death’s very door. However, as fate, karma and prayers could have it, I wound up in prison for 2.5 years on an aggravated DUI, instead of dead, where I discovered the Courses’Manual for Teachers in our library. Soon, I’d the whole book submitted liberated to prisoners and was reintroduced to Jesus again, with the time I needed to study every word of this lengthy text. After two decades, I should be old enough to obtain it now! Over time and with assistance from the Course, I was finally in a position to forgive myself for the bizarre life my ego had constructed. I did so the daily lessons again, wanting to see the face area of Christ within each inmate. That was not an easy one. But I left prison a changed, free sober man, far better for the experience and with a first draft book about it all under my belt. Today, I have eight years of sobriety under my belt and my book Still Singing, Somehow won the fall Pinnacle Book Achievement Award. This can be a very condensed version of my story- an odyssey of one soul’s karma.