selling enlightenment to the age of ignorance
which means, traveling and teaching.
it's been an interesting whirlwind of events -- I'm feeling lately as though we're living in a kind of revolving door, one of those really big ones, like you see in the entrances to airports -- and we keep going around and around and those flashes of color and movement are the souls, the people who attend our classes and workshops -- we can see them clearly, for a moment, and then whoosh..... out the door and back around the cycle we go.
to the next location and event series, and the next, and the next.
it seems that the G.O.D. energy -- the Generator, Operator, Destroyer -- really does make you do the things you least prefer, at times, in order to get Its message across to the people who need to receive the divine knowledge & energy the most.
I don't think either Jonathan or I really seriously thought we'd be lecturing much outside of Santa Cruz -- and now we're being pulled into the most interesting places to share the hard-won (and hard-fought, and hard-disciplined) knowledge and divine experience we received in South India.
actually, I should backtrack. initially, in fact, we DID think of traveling -- there was even some fantasy of an RV or something, just driving around like itinerant Western sadhus, sharing chautauqua in small towns across North America.
but then, of course, because it was a romantic/spiritual ideal -- that didn't happen and we wound up hunkering down in the Santa Cruz mountains and teaching teaching teaching -- two or four or even, sometimes, eight people at a time -- on a constant basis.
after a few years went by, we discovered we had quite a spiritual community growing up in these har hills -- another surprise.
then the idea of forming a spiritual center or ashram community here became stronger and stronger.... and...
since THAT's become a prominent, important idea.... sticking in this one place and really developing that center and finding land and going through all the important steps to create it....
has led to us spreading out and sharing these teachings in different areas, rather than sitting in the redwoods of Santa Cruz and making the spiritual center dream a concrete reality.
hah! that's the Datta energy, writ large. there's no getting around G. O. D., there's no escaping it, there's no weaseling out of whatever it wants you to do -- simply you have to grin and surrender and go in the direction It's pointing.
I console myself by knowing that god is a LOT smarter than I am, and has a brilliant plan about how to deploy each and every one of us. (not to mention a great sense of humor!)
it gets really easy to be flexible, inspired, light-hearted and deadly serious about the divine knowledge -- and our role in it -- once we just let the divine run the show and stop worrying about the details.
someone remarked recently that I 'sure know how to get attention, or to be in the spotlight,' and I had to howl, positively, HOWL, with laughter about this remark.
most of my life I've been thrust, uncomfortably, and awkwardly, and reluctantly at best, into the role of someone who's on stage. I hated it as a performer, and came to an uneasy truce with being the center of attention only when I felt the message I had come to convey (either through music or poetry) was really important and needed to be shared with others.
otherwise, I'm easier curled up in front of the statue of Shirdi Baba who presides over our home temple, reading a good book on a rainy day with a warm cat nearby and a week's supply of homemade chai. and no phones ringing.
but dharma seems to supersede what we think we want, or what we suspect our destiny is all about. it really pushes us, like baby birds, out of whatever comfortable nests we think we inhabit, and forces us to represent god's messages and miracles, energy channels and teachings, in the world. at every turn.
embracing that and growing into that role is a real experience. recognizing that it is the divine running the show, speaking through us, doing Its work through every human instrument it can use effectively, healing through us, loving through us, taking care of others through us -- it's a huge recognition. sometimes it's a leap of faith.
and mostly, it's an incredible relief.
then, there is no 'attention to get' or spotlights to vie for -- all of that, too, is in god's capable hands.
because all of the credit belongs to god, and all of the blame also belongs to god.
we just keep showing up, doing our maximum best, and letting god be god.
at the end of the day, I can't think of a more blissful way to spend one's life.