So How Did this All Get Started, Anyway?
Posted Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010
Breaking the news to friends and family members that I had been receiving and writing stuff about spirituality through a process that I couldn’t really understand or explain very well was no walk in the park.
But once I finally gave in and decided to listen to the persistent inner urgings to share the writings with others, the response was surprisingly supportive and encouraging, and folks still always seem to have lots of questions to ask.
Frequently (and surprisingly to me), one of the first things people want to know is when and where it all began. I think that, if I were in their shoes, I probably would be inclined to jump in with questions about what the process was like, how I knew it wasn’t just my imagination, what people were going to think when I told them about it, etc.
Maybe asking about the where and when is a polite way to get a conversation started without wanting to seem skeptical, but it is a common question, so I’ll take a minute here to tell you.
I’ve always tried to put dates on the things I’ve written, and the first dated writing I could find was from December, 1978. While there was no dramatic, sky-opening/lightning-flashing moment that stuck in my mind, I am virtually certain that my first experience with this kind of writing happened at the Self Realization Fellowship’s Lake Shrine in Los Angeles.
If you haven’t been to the Lake Shrine, I would encourage you to visit if you have a chance. It’s a peaceful, beautiful setting where Paramahansa Yogananda lived during his final years, and it’s a very comfortable place for meditation and contemplation.
My family was living in Washington, DC at that time, but our extended family was in California, and we were visiting them during the holidays, and I always made time to go to the Lake Shrine when I was in Southern California.
For some reason, I decided to take a pen and a pad of paper with me during that visit, and I soon found myself writing down thoughts. The first sentences written during that very first experience were:
“What is it you are seeking? You must define the limits of your desires before they can be realized. Live to manifest joy and happiness.”
Most of the rest of the communication either had to do with specific personal issues I was facing or was intended to convince me that what was happening was real. But there were several other snippets that still stand out, and they all relate to joy:
“You are in the midst of a joyous manifestation. You will grow through expressing joy and opening your channels to the truth.”
“Express love, be happy, enjoy your family, have faith, be patient, know that you are in the midst of the stream of life.”
“Enjoyment is the key, and it is so easy. It is a natural life process, but you sometimes make it so difficult.”
I’ve had lots of other experiences writing at the Lake Shrine over the years, as I have in other beautiful outdoor settings. For some reason, the words always seem to flow more freely when I am out in nature. If you are exploring with this kind of communication, you might want to see if that proves to be the case with you, too.
© Jack Armstrong 2010