I never met Swami Muktananda, Parmahansa ( 1908 – 1982, October ) in person when he was physically alive, but I have met him and had his darshan on several blessed occasions since my 1st involvement in Siddha Yoga Meditation in 1982, May
The following teaching occurred in Boston on a snowy Friday evening in the Winter of 1996 @ ‘the Castle’ located near the ‘Park Plaza’ and South End areas of Boston. It is one of those blessed occasions where Baba was with me and spoke to me directly:
I was attending the opening reception of an exhibition ‘Artwork by Women Artists of Color’ with my friend, JoAnn Rose. I introduced JoAnn to a woman friend who’s synasthesia paintings ( music as colour and form ) were being featured in the show. JoAnnRose, an artist herself who is very colorful and of Italian ancestry, grew up in the suburbs near Boston asked my friend ( who is Afro-American and – like myself )-of Cherokee ancestry: ” What is a woman of color?’ and ” Are there any pieces by white women artists in this show ?” My artist friend replied; ” No, only non-white women are women of color and there is no work by by white women artists in this show.”
Upon hearing this revlation from my artist friend and soul sister, I was stunned in an amusing way. Smiling politely, I went over to the table where refreshments were available, helping myself to some vegetables and a glass of sparkling water. I found myself enveloped in a sphere of consciousness separate from, but connected to the main tableau of the event unfolding. The dark shadows of ‘the Castle’ above the reception were suffused with a pink and golden light. Baba Muktananda was next to me taking a sip of sparkling water and holding a piece of celery and a small tomato in his other hand. Wearing robes of saffron and gold with socks and sandals , he was smiling, exuding his aura of joyful shakti. I could smell the distinct fragrance of sandalwood and feel the warmth of his presence as he leaned towards me and touched my shoulder, his eyes sparkling with delight and said, laughing; “Ray, your friends do not understand the higher Self, the Self of All that is beyond race, color or creed. They are interesting persons who are considered by your society to be fascinating and talented. But, they do not understand that we are All actually expressions of the One Self of All. “I smiled with appreciation upon receiving this teaching from the Guru ,who was no longer visibly present but who’s vibrance was resonating within me.
Soon JoAnn rejoined me and we left the reception , drove down to the Mass College of Art on Huntington Avenue and saw a performance of Korean jazz followed by dinner of risotto and wine @ ‘ Trattoria Il Panino ‘ ( now ‘Umbria’ ) on Franklin Street just around the corner from Broad Street, where my penthouse loft was located in Boston’s Financial District.
Gurumayi ( Swami Chidvilasananda ) has quoted Baba Muktananda on this same subject: ” We can live together in harmony when we understand that there is only One and that one is everyone.”
copyright Ray Iasiello 1996, 2010 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Ray Iasiello Certified Hatha Yoga Teacher
Certified Resonance Repatterning™ Practitioner