Adventures in Dallas Part 1.
Trip Start Jun 03, 2008
13Trip End Sep 08, 2008
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It was facinating learning about some of the inside workings of the masonic lodge, their teachings and goals. At night we stopped at a rest area and chilled out. In the morning the others were still sleeping so I used the time to practice some Amma bhajans (devotional songs). After the rest was over we cruised through rural Texas to finally reach Dallas.
I stayed at an interesting womans house who was and "alternative lifestyle" model complete with piercings, tatoos, and a really cool haricut. She had a really melo older dog that I enjoyed hanging out with and two cats, one of which was really BIG!
I was faced with a new challenge: The Amma program started the next day and I had to be there early in the morning, but the folks I was staying with were going late. I was told there was a :"staff" house in the neighborhood, and I could walk there in the morning to get a ride. A primitive map was drawn for me and the next morning I set out with my Ashram bag and Trader Joes sack into the neighborhood to find the "staff house".
I took a wrong turn and went out of my way on street but then eventually found the right one. From there on out it was like a movie. There was no mistaking the "staff house" and everything happened on cue. As I got closer to the house I saw people dressed in orange and or white. It was Amma's swamiji's!! I gave them a hearty "Om Namah Shiviya" (a sacred greeting) and explained my situation of needing to go to Dallas for early seva. They invited me into their van and we rode together to the hotel in Dallas! I rode with Amma's swamajis to Dallas!!
Then an unexpected seva! When we arrived at the hotel I had the honor of helping take luggage and a laptop up to the hotel room for the swamijis! Just amazing, Mother's Leila (divine play) is beyond all! Her synchronous timing trancends all comprehension!
On arriving in Dallas, I was trained on my new seva: "Stargazing". Yes, thats right, "Stargazing"! In this context Amma is the "Star" and "gazing" is watching her (up close) giving darshan.
Ahead of time a list had been composed of people who had done a lot of seva throughout the year or who had been very involved in Satsang. My job was to check those who approached the seva desk against the list and get them a time to go up to Amma and put them in the cue. Once it was their time to go up I would escort them to their seat near Amma and start the stopwatch for a 10minute Stargaze!
This was my job to escort people back and forth from the stargazing location. Things got crazy though during Devi Bhava night and there were a lot of changes very quickly so I ended up watching the seva desk mostly while Prashanth the seva leader took charge (to my relief).
Each Devi Bhava (ceremony for world peace and celebration of the divine feminine) has a life and energy all its own. In this Devi Bhava at the end when all the people gather at the right side of the stage to move around in a circle and be showered with flower petals by Amma, I experienced something highly unusual: I had an abnormally long time with Amma near the front of the stage.
Even though staff was present moving everyone along quickly and there was a huge crowd pressing all around me, all of a sudden there was an opening and I was right in front of Amma who smiled the biggest smile I have ever seen and showered me and my Amma doll with many, many, flower petals! For what seemed like a day instead of a few seconds, the crowd and staff all disappeared, and time stood still as Amma rained handfull after handfull of flower petals on me! Jai Ma! Jai Kali Ma, Jai Durga Ma! Jai Saraswati Ma! Jai Ma!