Wednesday, March 21, 2012

My Ayurveda Massage Experience

"The Santhigiri Ayurveda facility is located at 91 Broad St. in Winter Garden. The little yard adornment, under the old oak tree says RELAX. With that advice in mind I entered the front door.

Inside I'm greeted in a courteous manner by a young lady. As I wrote my name on the sign-in sheet a tall, amber-skinned gentleman with gentle eyes emerges from behind a lovely curtain. He fixed his warm, smiling gaze on me and I was immediately happy I chose to be there. He was obviously happy to see me as well. He is Dr. G. Nadial Santosh B.A.M.S., Chief Ayurvedic Consultant, trained at Santhigiri Ashram, India, a pioneering Spiritual and Ayurveda institution of great repute.

After a few words of introduction I tour the unpretentious facility. It feels like a special place. There's a massage room in a traditional yet colorful setting; an office, just perfect, no attention on personality but comfortable and welcoming; a main treatment room.

The main treatment room is subtly lit, allowing the bright outdoors to filter through gold-toned curtains. In the center is a large, beautiful wooden table designed for traditional Ayurveda treatments. Because oils are used in conjunction with herbs to facilitate the body's natural healing responses this table is carved to accommodate those oils. In the corner there is a matching wood cabinet made specifically for steam hydro-therapy.

I was there to get a basic treatment, a massage using oils mixed with herbs. I disrobed to my skivvies and sat on a stool to begin. Rather than describe the actual massage techniques just let me say the movements were thorough and the pressure was firm and comfortable.

Dr. Santosh started with my head, working in the scalp. For the remainder of the treatment we moved to the beautiful table. Doctor Santosh was clearly well trained. The movements were confident and deliberate. All of my concerns, for either privacy or comfort were taken into account and I felt secure and respected at every moment. The work itself was comforting, relaxing and invigorating.

After an hour massage I entered the little steam cabinet in the corner. We chatted casually while the steam worked it's magic. Moisture, drawn from my body by the steam, cleansed the pores and flushed toxins stirred by the massage. After twenty or so minutes I was finished. I stepped out of the cabinet, and wearing a robe, retired to the bath where I showered. I felt balanced, warm and cared for.

I know there is much more to Ayurveda than this brief encounter. I am told, and I believe, any health concern may be addressed with Ayurveda, the most ancient of medicines. The Santhigiri Ayruveda facility in Winter Garden is a good place to start 407-490-4322 or 407-756-5255. On the web at

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Post Script to Big Event

The transformation described in the previous chapter took place in early February. There were subsequent events of lesser intensity over the next four months.

There were several telling revelations as well. The most interesting and easily conveyed are here along with a little background on events that both precede and follow what I am sharing in this post.

A new breed of people began to come into my life. The woman-child who brought me the book COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS became a regular visitor (later she became the mother of two of my daughters and my third wife). It was not long before she brought two friends with her. One I’ll call D. and one M.

On our first occasion to meet M. made a comment that I interpreted as diminishing my experience; an attempt to reduce my respect for its power. I may have simply misunderstood his intention but I failed to appreciate it none-the-less. I felt anger. I asked him to leave. He refused. I became brusk and demanded he leave. Years later I realized he was jealous of my experience. He had been aware of man’s possible evolution from his diverse studies and wanted it for himself and here I was, completely uneducated yet rich with experience. It irked him I am certain.

As a result of my “throwing him out” I found myself four seasons later in a position unable to refuse living in a house with him as the “Lord of the Manor” for nine months. It was a dark time. My ego had regained its grip and I felt separate and empty of joy. The fourteen other housemates of Avenue B. and I were crammed in an eight hundred square foot, two bedroom building with an outside shower owned by a female deputy sheriff. Little did I know the fourteen others were reflection of my suppressed psyche. I’ll bring more to light about Avenue B later.

During our time together M. found ways to take me apart bit by bit. I suppose, to discover why me and not him. There is some truth to the old saying angry men take heaven by storm. I was a very angry man. My second child, whom I thought to be my first, was conceived in the later months at Avenue B. And honestly… this was not a deliberate decision on my part. This too we will return to later.

Now the events that preceded my leaving the home in the swamp next to the radio station.

You could call those months a period of revelation defining the Revelation. Not to confuse you but the next (roughly) seven years became a period of definition recovery. Meaning the main transformation was a desolation of the self (ego) as a set of definitions and beliefs described as me (Michael). To survive in the world there had to be a redefining. Since the end of the seven year period (age thirty) following the transformation I have worked toward the ability to come and go from definition at will.

Within a few days of the transformation I became severely ill. Blue sky appeared to have a dark overcast, as if full of dust. The sun became a dirty orange. I had a fever that lasted for three days. I was weak and could not move from my black Naugahyde couch. I was experiencing the healing crisis mention by Saul of Tarsus in the New Testament. But I lay there without concern. My joy was so complete I cared for nothing. My boss came to me and asked me if I needed a doctor, do I want to go to the hospital he asked. I decline saying I was just fine. He had no idea what had happened and I felt no need to tell him. On the third day, as I lay there, I was looking up into the corner near the ceiling and a hole appeared to open up in the ceiling. Inside the hole there was nothing but clear light. No color, no distinguishing qualities, simply clarity as a visual experience. As if seeing into infinite, clearly lit nothingness. Then I remembered a gentle, loving man I had met eighteen months earlier in Iowa. As we sat in his living room listening to music with awareness as a theme, he said with all the sincerity in the world “Ah, for a moment of clarity.” I pray he got his as well.

One afternoon I was sitting in my Naugahyde throne-like chair contemplating my naval when in the space before my eyes was overtaken by an image that opened up in front of me. Like a dream, but surrounded on the periphery by what were the walls of my living room. Within the “dream” were two of me in a unique environment dressed in bland, light grey suits. Each simultaneously withdrew a sword, a rapier, and one became still as the other proceeded to attack the other without remorse or affect. When I became a little startled the image went away.

In another instance I was laying on my bed, resting from a difficult day in the production room. Suddenly I was in a dream sequence where I was detached from and following behind my body as it walked down an aisle between the old fashioned experiment desks often seen on old college laboratories. Test tubes and Bunsen burners and racks of apparatus on each side. My body was wearing a white lab coat over a tweed coat and blue tie. As my body reached the end it sat down on a bench and I instantly entered the body, clasp my hand over the back of my neck and a white light exploded in my head obliterating the world. I awoke realizing I had achieved enlightenment experimenting with the mushrooms.

Over those last few months I resided and worked at the radio station in the swamp I felt strongly I was in the wrong place doing the wrong thing. I discovered from experimentation that I was very psychic and could send and receive information. I read Dr. John Lilly’s CENTER OF THE CYCLONE among others including ESP by Susy Smith, PSYCHIC DISCOVERIES BEHIND THE IRON CURTAIN by Sheila Ostrander, Lynn Schroeder. I read the bible from cover to cover and understood it for the first time. The information in them confirmed many things I suspected were true but in the past felt they did not apply to me. I learned from Dr. Lilly’s book how to remain open to psychic information.

A few years before I had used a Quija Board to communicate with what I believed to be an entity named Bonnie Knight. I would beam a thought across a short distance to the board sitting between my mother and sister. The board would spell out answers while they sat and carried on casual conversations with others in the room. Only I knew the questions. Only I understood the answers. I had yet to realize my role as a psychic. So when I sat with a woman after my reawakening in the swamp and tried to use the board again I was dismayed at how slow and muddy the movement was. The board slowly spelled out “stop demanding.” I never went back to it.

Years later I worked with a professional astrologer in my study of the subject. With her I found my Moon’s South Node conjunct the most psychic of star formations. It clearly states what one should give up to attain enlightenment and conveyed I was a professional psychic in my most immediate past life. Further, any effort to use this for personal gain would be counter productive. When I tested this by advertising myself as such some ten years later I found the work very tiring. As well, I attracted people seeking mundane answers. Not much fun for the spiritual teacher whose North Node stated was his destiny should he choose to more fully awaken.

The culminating event, the impetus to leave the radio station, finally occurred in early June of that same year. As a sixteen year old I fractured my spine along with other injuries. The fracture went undiagnosed for twenty years. In the meantime it became a source of extreme pain, often nearly crippling me. Because no one would, or could, tell me why I was in such pain I tried to ignore it.

That day in June, in the humid, stillness of the mobile home with no air conditioning in a swamp, as I lay on my couch dripping with sweat and naked, the pain became nearly unbearable. Then I remembered what I had read in Richard Buck’s COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS about soldiers in battle who had been wounded. There, on the battle field, in immense pain, suddenly propelled into The Highest State of Consciousness their pain was no more. Identification with the body ceased and pure awareness became their ply frame of reference. Pure awareness cannot know pain. Pure awareness knows only love.

With this in mind I chose to surrender to the pain and deliberately allow it to wash over me. I ceased my resistance, my struggle to find comfort, and immediately found myself in bliss. Before my minds eye there appeared two visions. The first was an image of the earth from space. It was consumed by fire. Like the wick of a candle the earth was aflame. As it evolved it became composed of the human multitude as one passion for being. This passed slowly and then flashed out to become a bird’s eye view from a high place. The scene was a group of people far enough away that I could not see detailed faces. They were sitting in a grassy field in a shape like the earth aflame, tear shaped. I felt strongly this was a spiritual community, my personal connection to humanity. I immediately wanted to be there with them. It appeared to be in the Appalachia mountains.

The next day I gave one month notice I was leaving the radio station. The owner, my boss, responded “you can’t leave now. You’ll kill us.” I waited one week, put a few pieces of clothing in a box, snatched up my faith and walked out the door.

In the next installment I’ll tell you about Larre.

Friday, February 17, 2012

The Big Events

Last evening my super intelligent 5 year old grandson asked me "Why did you take me fishing Grandpa?" I asked him if he had fun. "Yes" he says. "That's why." I told him. He then asks "Why did you let me fish Grandpa?" I asked him if he learned anything. "Yes" he says. "That's why" I told him... This morning, as he was leaving for school, after a hug and he stood there for a few seconds looking, with a serenity, into my eyes. There was a deeper connection. He was deliberate and aware of what he was feeling... My love for him is a love that abides in that space where the fabric of life is not whole yet not rent. No words may touch it, no image is pure enough...

I am inspired to share this story from my life.

I've been on the path of spiritual retrieval since I was a little boy. It started with an event when I was fourteen months old. I was in a savings and loan office with my parents in Louisville, Kentucky. The building was new and had opened prior to pipes along the walls that fed steam to the radiators being uninsulated. It was a cold winter so the radiators were full on. As my father consulted with a gentleman in another office my mother and I were waiting in a foyer. I remember an urge to touch the pipe. I went to it and placed both hands on the steam pipe. Instantly all the skin on both palms became ash and “I” was hurled into a white light. This was the beginning of memory for me.

The light remained close and evident until about the time I reached puberty then started to fade from awareness. Until then it was most evident when I was in the woods or alone. I took it for granted.

The skin was replaced with a graft to each hand from my left abdomen. My hands were totally functional once the grafts were completely healed in about six months later. There were a lot of struggles for my mother during this time. The doctors my mother took me to told her the long term impact she should anticipate. They were plastic surgeons, the best available, and neurosurgeons. They told her I would be an idiot and unable to talk or function properly due to the shock to my nervous system. They told her I would be accident prone. That part became true. Her response was “Not if I have my say in it.”

There were many, many trials and unexpected issues that came and went, a lot of violence. At some point I’ll share many of them. Regardless… I talked, a lot in fact. I said things that put other people on edge, especially my mother. My mind was open to information that apparently other people were unaware of and because I was undeterred by a sense of right and wrong, and out of control almost all the time, I did and said a lot of things considered out of bounds. I didn’t have a normal life and I was not easily indoctrinated. I asked her perspective once. Her response: “I could either put you in school on the chance you’d civilize or move to the desert and let you live as a savage.” School was an effort in futility until I was in my late teens. I failed at everything except art and speech and P.E. Those darkest years I really made a mess of my life.

I retired from my effort to ascertain the boundaries of mortality in my 21st year and went into a period of contemplation which soon resulted in another powerful awakening. This time I was safe at home. I had found work in radio. My last gig was an AM and FM radio station, running the production and “on air” side of things. It was situated on the edge of a swamp where I lived in a mobile home placed three feet from the stations back door. I was the first one to get there and the last one to leave, seven days a week.

I would spend hours each evening remembering the horrible things I had done; embarrassing others or creating situations they were forced to put up with and expend energy to rectify. I was filled with guilt and fear, I felt unlovable and ugly. I had no idea where or what love was.

There were no other buildings within a mile and those were associated with a fish camp usually closed at night. When I wasn’t in the building doing my radio thing I was in my hovel, fairly stoned, digging around in my mind, looking for the source of my existence and trying to understand how and why I had become such a pariah. I hated what I had become. I hated me.

In the isolation I used music, my only friend, as loud as possible to drive me deeply inward. Over time others heard about the “guy who ran rock station and lived in the swamp.” Frequently people would show up at my door wanting to get high, listen to jazz rock fusion, and occasionally discuss the nature of realty.

On a Friday in February of 1973, after being there for a year and a half or so, a new stranger showed up. Already a crowd had gathered and it was promising to be another night externally focused. As he passed through the door, he hands me a baggy with three psychedelic mushrooms in it. “Happy birthday” he says. I have no idea how he knew my birthday had been a few days past. I learned later he was born the same day of the same year 52 minutes before me.

If I’d had any idea what was about to happen I would have gone next door to the radio station and hid. Instead I popped them into my mouth and swallowed.

The next four or five hours became the most powerful non-violent experience of my life so far. It was beautiful. It was frightening. It was rich with visuals that were both chaotic and familiar. I saw things that were beyond my capacity to express or explain. Some were hallucinations others were visions, obviously archetypal images that seemed alive. I felt fear beyond anything I’d ever imagined. I have been shot at, stabbed at, beaten and maimed. I’ve wrecked cars, jumped out of airplanes and swam in barracuda infested waters while bleeding. Nothing could touch the fear I felt even at being faced with simple questions like “do you want to go outside” or “are you alright?” On that evening I went insane and became saner than ever before. Over several hours of overwhelming mystical experience I made some people smile and others to walk away in a huff. I said things to them I couldn’t myself understand and I recognized the difference between friend and foe simply by putting my attention on them.

After a while I realized there were only myself and the gentleman who’d brought me the mushrooms in the room. I was seated in the middle of the room facing the north wall. There was a vortex of electric, multicolor tiles, like a funnel, focused on my my forehead. There was a sense this was symbolic of knowledge pouring in. After a moment I felt there was another presence in the room. It felt benevolent and seemed to expect nothing and was everywhere, even inside me. Without effort I acknowledge it. It had no intention other than to be. I, for reasons unknown at the time, said to it “I give up.”

I must have slipped out of time for I suddenly found myself laying prone on my back on the floor with my feet to the eastern wall and face up. I felt good, very good. The beautiful mind-blowing images were gone and I felt my senses perfect in my awareness. There was a knowing of harmony beyond description. The urge to yawn began. I spoke aloud “I want to yawn.” My companion who I’d forgotten about said “Control the yawn.” “I don’t want to control the yawn” I responded and I allowed it. As my throat opened my back arched, the top of my head tipped the floor like the end of a bow and out of my throat came a single, pure sound not unlike a trumpet. I left my body, out through the top of my head into a sea of golden red bliss. As I took a breath the “I” which was evident and visible to an awareness which was me within fell back into the body. Another breath was taken as “I” entered. As that breath became a sound out of the body the “I” went out and awareness disappeared into the sea of bliss again. Over and over this occurred. I don’t know when it stopped. The next I knew was my body awakening in the morning in my bed.

All the suffering I had know for years had lifted. All the fear was gone and left was a peace that “passeth all understanding.”

Three days later I was brought a book by another stranger, a woman. The title of the book is COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS by Richard Buck, MD. It explained everything that had occurred from the moment I surrendered with “I give up.” It made sense out of the pain and suffering and how this led to my experience.

There are the beginnings of several side stories here in this offering. However my point is to relate this to the love that I feel for others which is mentioned in the comment regarding my grandson. That love has grown more evident over the decades since I became aware of Its source. Everything except the insanity of self hatred makes sense now.

Please know I do not recommend psychedelics as a means of achieving spiritual awakening. It is very dangerous and not permanent. There is an easier way now and the recovery of definition, which took me years to manage, can be done with a decision.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

A Shocking Discovery

I was eight or nine and we lived in a nice house in Lake Park in Palm Beach County, Florida. The floors were terrazzo which are little chips of tile in a hard, white grout smoothed to a mirror-like surface.

My father, who was out of the house, had been doing some work in his bedroom at the time and it was empty of furniture. I remember walking into the room and seeing a metal power drill laying on the floor. It was plugged in.

It was summer and quite warm in South Florida. As usual I was simply dressed in short pants and no shoes or shirt.

As I stood there I was filled an interest in this drill. I wanted to know what it felt like to hold this device in my hand. It reminded me of toy gun. I imagined aiming it at something and with a whirring sound sending out a blast.

I picked it up. It was heavy in my hand. I could feel the cold pot metal. I aimed it at the floor. I knew it would not actually fire a projectile or beam of light. I still braced myself as if it would. I pulled the trigger.

Instantly my body was rattling. I felt the grip of the electricity pouring through the drill into me. In a flash my arm straightened out, my body spun around and the drill flew out of my hand and across the room smashing into the wall with a thud.

I was stunned for a long moment. Then I couldn't believe I had made such a stupid mistake. I don’t know how I knew without being told but I realized I had grounded the drill in the terrazzo floor through my bare feet.

That wasn’t the last time I was shocked by electricity, but it was the last time it was an unexpected surprise.


All photos copyright Michael B Stone

Friday, August 19, 2011

Why We Sigh.

It's been a while.

When I really love someone, deeply love without equivocation, I have experiences beyond description with any words. The effort to convey actually diminishes the experience. My Love for some people, or because of some people, creates a mystical space in which there are seemingly whole other spaces, as if filled with other beings who also love and create space.

I know, or better yet, I become this space that has no limit. Loosely filling that space is a host of sentient beings whose only intention is to make the space available for my unconditional positive regard to expand. They are like you might expect angels to be if you took away the stereotypical notions. Rather than spectacles of light or shimmering, winged ghost-like creatures they are simply beings, differing from each other and familiar at the same time. The space that opens up and allows greater awareness just because I love unconditionally. Fearlessly.

I believe this is why we sigh. We long for a glimpse of the beyond.


I've been reading in a book loaned to me by Roger, my brother-in-law. It's titled ONLY ONE SKY. It is a series of talks given by Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, ISBN0-525-47440-4 copyright 1975.

After having an interesting experience which inspired the first two paragraphs of this post I found myself a few days later reading a page in this book while visiting Roger. It carried a short note regarding the very experience. Rather than quoting the entire explanation of the experience as he stated it I'll quote the short phrase that sums up the rule which when followed creates the experience. From page 17, "When you love, you become nobody. If you remain a somebody then love never happens."

In and about 1988 I wrote a series of poems reflected my deep, painful longing for a return to being "nobody."

This is one of those poems.


From Queen to Witch, Kali Ma,
Tears You limb from limb.

The flesh is rent, torn from bones,
Amidst a raucous din.

Futile schemes and selfish plans,
Abruptly come to end.

Centuries of structured mind
An image I defend.

Weeds that root, in rocky soil,
As trees they would pretend.

Starved for loves nurtured way,
Blown by fears great wind.

Clutching threads of mindful scorn,
Swiping at the air.

The ego's plan of wasting death,
My heart it would ensnare.

Falling helpless, through the night,
Pleading in despair,

Creates demise, all of its own
As Shiva's light lays bare.

Slowly dawns, the break of day,
The sun without a care,

Drenches dreams of Wholly Being
Child of God so fair.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

What Will Happen In 2012?

A close friend asked me to elucidate on my expectations of the coming changes associated with the "End Of Days" mentioned by scholars of the Mayan Calendar. I felt this was a good way to update my blog which I have neglected recently.

So lets get the mundane out of the way.

I think Obama will be reelected.

Beyond that, I must say I am skeptical of there being a specific event on the date of December 21, 2012. I feel at the heart of the expected change is the way we view time. We've been indoctrinated into viewing time based on seconds, minute and hours which gives us a false measurement of time. If we were to know time in it's purest form we would simply recognize events, i.e. thoughts and external changes in environment such as moon cycles and weather patterns and seasonal shifts, bowel movements, baby feedings, etc.

Time as we view it came into being in the last millennia. In the few thousand years before that it was measured in terms of a rulers life span. Before that it wasn't measured but experienced more like a continuum that as humans lived they felt.

After ingesting a psychoactive substance such as LSD one experiences time more as a reality, a constant shifting pattern of events that more or less relate to external activities and internal psychic patterns. Time becomes more of a great temporal, often beautiful, being whose edges and internal spaces are divine and endowed with a feminine flavor. A cosmic matrix in my experience. Space is where she is not.

As the collective conscious moves more toward the natural view of time and space, recognizing and fully realizing the true illusory nature of these mental constructs, self deception exposed falls away. Insanity will prevail for many. A struggle occurs... to hold onto a point of view that can no longer be sustained.

Some of what I believe we will see occur: There will continue to be revelations regarding who actually drives the socioeconomic engine of the world and their motives (the heart of which appears to be to create suffering, they thrive on others suffering). Other interesting elitist, dark and occulted societies will surface and become exposed. Self serving governments will topple amid ruins. We are seeing that now as Neptune enters Pisces the day I posted this.

People will become educated regarding how much power they actually have in directing their respective group's realizations. More and more we will see various extreme groups vying for control which will lead, eventually, to a greater overall understanding of cooperation. But not before violent shifts in consciousness for many. Violence weeds out the negators of peace and leaves in it's wake those who begin to desire peace over personal and collective beliefs.

I expect more about extraterrestrials will surface as time proceeds from where we are now. The demand for evidence of their existence is growing strong. There was a piece on NPR regarding that very subject yesterday (April 4). As Neptune (the alien to us) enters Pisces (realm of chaos) where it rules, what is vague and hidden, illusory, shows itself. Motives become strikingly evident. BTW:Neptune is my ruling planet and Pisces fills my first house of the body. It promises to be an interesting journey for me, assuming I'll be here to make note of it.

The very notion of time will begin to be altered in the collective. Psychic capacities and spiritual discernment of and by the common person will begin to evolve more rapidly. Natural disasters will be more frequent until the relationship between our collective fear and the fluctuation in the earths skin begins to become evident to more of us, eventually making a quantum shift.

Communication will take a giant leap, telepathy becoming more common place with the Internet serving as a catalyst for same.

As the old guard, people of mine and my mother's generation, pass away there will be more room for those coming after to rapidly expand their consciousness. We don't realize how much we stand in each others way in our effort to control our personal reality. A simple example: It is very difficult to experience intimacy with someone who resists being discovered. Fear of intimacy is the principal obstacle to self awareness. That fear is generated by secrets and hidden agendas.

As these obstacles become more evident in our collective awareness the fear will dissipate and a unity will evolve that cannot harbor a false sense of time and personal space. Of course this is all based on assuming the upheaval of darker energies from our collective unconscious doesn't destroy us. A distinct possibility.

The planet goes through what we go through. It is naturally shifting while we shift in a synthesized way. Thesis (true knowledge) plus anti-thesis (neurosis and limiting beliefs) creating a synthesis (in this case upheaval). It is always working toward balance and as the balance becomes realized the qualities I've placed in parenthesis change to reflect that purer pattern and so the synthesis reflects same.

Then there's the possibility of Planet X to consider. Do you have a hundred million dollar telescope?

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

What Does GOD Want?

I can only offer my opinion. GOD wants you to be happy. No other expectation has become apparent in all of the years I've been listening. Sixty Three at this point.

Being happy all the time is like riding the crest of a wave. It takes great skill to remain at the top of the wave. In my case I can say near the trough has been my dominant experience.

What seems to be the problem? Well, there are a lot of very wise and good men and women who have already mentioned this in one way or another. The ego is the problem... and, it seems, the solution as well. More on that in a moment.

I've heard GOD "speak" to me a lot in my sixty three Summers. Probably more than most people would be able to say. I'm not bragging but actually pointing out a character flaw. You would think that as many conversations as we've had I would have spent a little more time in reflection on the content. But I am a stubborn child at best and as my mother would say "You'd argue with a fence post."

Just one example: Back in the early 80's I spent a lot of time on the Kashi ranch, an ashram in a little town south of here over on the East Coast. One sunny day, as I walked across the grass toward one of the buildings a young man I knew well crossed paths with me and stopped me to ask "Michael, you have a fairly big ego, do you think my ego is big?" I said I had no idea. That was all there was to the exchange and we went on our ways. But I puzzled over the thought of having a big ego. How does one discern the size of one's ego? I was clueless.

Later that evening I was in Darshan (devotional service) with about two hundred other people and I asked Ma Jaya "Do I have a big ego?" She said "Yes, and it will cause you a lot of pain." "How long will it last?" I said. She said "That depends on you." I raised my hand again to ask another question and she said "Enough!"

The next day, and for several days there after, I was miserable with self loathing and disgust. I didn't even have a reason I could attach to the feeling, it was just there, dark and deeply morose. It passed and after some reflection and a little relaxed interest in the question of its source an answer came.

First, her attention was enough to bring up what needed to be purged at that moment. Second, my Higher Self set me up with a walk in the direction of another who like me was seeking release. Third, my egocentric desire for clarity regarding ego on one hand and confirmation I had a small ego on the other drew me like a moth to flame. The truth freed me of my delusion and set me straight. Ego identification with knowledge resulted in a piece of it being torn away.

This is the destructive/redemptive force called Kali, manifest in Ma Jaya, to benefit my awakening. Kali was a common experience in her presence. I know with further questioning I would have brought on much more suffering of "truth" which is, I suppose, why she stopped me.

In my opinion God wants you to be happy. The ego wants everything else. Having both is the crest of the wave.