Remembering significant people and events
Teachers along the path
by Randy O
Did you have a teacher is a very interesting and cool question to begin the opening moments of this writing endeavor.
My first ten years of life is mostly a blur, filled with confusion and interesting love. My father died at the young age of twenty-one, I was one. This started a journey of listening and observing. After a very abusive marriage our Mother let my brother and I go to live with our Great Aunts and Uncles (move from California to Mississippi, culture shook doesn’t begin to provide the right context). This went from a summer visit to permanent, but what a blessing to have such a strong family.
Along with this move came a devote, religious upbringing. If the church doors were open you were to walk through them. Now the cool thing about this was I enjoyed reading the bible and listening to the elders in the church (Assemblies of God, very far right Pentecostal (if that means anything to you). My very first experience with awakening was when I was twelve, as best I can remember the age, at a church camp. Every year we were shuttled off to church camp where we went through hours of teaching and prayer study. During one of these prayer studies and with the help of several others I was filled with the “Holy Ghost”. Now I had seen this occur many times in church, speaking in tongs and interpretations. The funny thing is I recognized this at the time as a very internal look inside and deep meditation. This unleashed a muttering of words, or just gibberish, that spewed out, but at that moment I knew it was from within and not an external force that came to “fill you”. From then on I knew “God” was not an external power but an internal power that all life shared. This started a direction of study of other religions and teachings, not sure of all the books I read or religions I studied but I took the stance that all religions that taught positive virtues, compassion and love at their core were good. This turned me away from my church as it preached only through Jesus you could be saved and all other religions just meant they were going to hell. That was such a foreign concept after that early experience.
There were many brief encounters with the supernatural and awakenings (or maybe I’m really talking about being present with life) during the next ten years but most if not all were in the shadow of alcohol and drugs. Then the ego took over as I “knew” the meaning of life and I was going to take it by the throat and live it to the fullest. This extreme ego, and interesting enough also filled with love of everyone and everything, allowed me to become very successful in the business world of corporate structure. I always saw work as a game, as long as I knew the rules I would play it better than most (as the ego let me believe;-). In the second half of the 90’s I started being pulled to volunteering in the community, from getting involved in building to setting on the Board of one of the charities.
In the past ten years I was turned on to David Hawkins by my cousin, after reading Power vs. Force many thoughts started to fall into place or be completely erased. My wife and I made another big move, one of many in our lives, back to the home area to take on some family commitments. Once back in this part of the states, deep south, I started to get involved in mentoring troubled youth in one on one settings as well as creating a course to teach these special kids how to focus on sustaining a job and being aware of their worth as part of this beautiful creation. Right around this same time my wife introduced me to the Power of Now after seeing it on Oprah. This more than any other teaching helped me to slow down and be present. My coolest awakening (or present with life) moment came the summer of reading ET’s book while being present and walking trough nature. I love talking to the trees and all the creatures around, during one of these times I was surrounded by a flock of ducks, not wanting anything but just to walk with me, it felt so real. Other books that influence my meditation were around the teachings of Falun Gong, Buddha Fa, what a beautiful religion/teaching of Zhen-Shan-Ren.
So did I have a teacher; I would say yes and it started with the church and progresses with being present with life. Love and compassion is what I believe life is all about. To be awake, to me, is to understand that we are all a part of Being, of God, of Joy, of Love.