My Mother’s Death
My mother had been an alcoholic, but devoted to my father, who had died about a year and a half before she passed. She had undergone surgery for a small spot of colon cancer, which the doctors had successfully removed, but her liver was so far gone from cirrhosis that she was unable to process the anaesthesia out of her system. I visited her in the hospital, but she soon slipped into a coma as her battered system slowly shut down. I came every so often to check on her, and swab out her mouth with little lemon swabs the hospital had by her bedside to keep her from getting too dry. She could not communicate. I asked a couple of women helpers to open her, but they tested and felt that wasn’t her path. A month passed.
One morning at about 6:00 a.m., I got a call from her doctor saying that I had better get there soon. I went over, and entered her room, but she had just passed momentarily before. I felt very quiet and light, and not wracked with grief, as I thought I might be. As I stood next to her body, contemplating the woman who had born and raised me, I began to feel a light, joyous energy floating somewhere in the room. It appeared to come from a single area, up near the ceiling where the wall joins it. I continued being quiet, and somehow felt it was my mother AND father, together again, and the happiness in the room was palpable. My sorrow was non-existent; instead, my heart was glad she was not suffering and felt joy in her new state and her re-connection with my father.
The chaplain came in and tried to ‘comfort’ me, though I was not in need of it. I let him pray, and could hardly wait for him to leave so I could be alone to sense the joy floating in the room above me. He finally left, and in a while I decided to go home, as there was nothing more I could do in the hospital.
As I drove home, this joyous, loving feeling followed me, and as I entered the house, the energy I had felt before again settled into a particular area where the wall and ceiling met. This energy then ‘followed’ me around the house for about four hours. I slowly realized it/they was/were checking on me, concerned for me. I turned to it and looked up at where I felt it to be and said, “I’m alright. Thank you for being wonderful, loving parents, and thank you for everything you did for me. I love you both. Please…. go where you need to go next. I’m fine.”
As if on cue, the energy vanished, and I was alone again, at home, feeling grateful to God for the unexpected experience that proved to me that death is just a doorway out of this plane, and into another.
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“I Am Home”
(The following experience is recorded in a book entitled Going Home, which can be purchased by going to the website www.bythewaybooks.com. The cost is USD20 + shipping charge.)
Two days after his sudden death, Hamid Camp came to me and we had this conversation:
Hamid: Hi, Paul
Paul: Hi, Hamid…we are very . . . sad…
Hamid: I know…
Paul: No, the whole family is sad…
Hamid: I know…
Paul: The whole Subud group is . . . sad…we are all sad…
Hamid: I know, I know, but I’m not.
Paul: How is it for you?
Hamid: You have no idea what it is like … I am swimming in an ocean of love… I am home…
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My Mother and Heaven
My mother had died about two years ago. From time to time I would ask in latihan to receive her state and whereabouts. I would do this prompted by an inner feeling led by some type of curiosity. Mostly, I felt that her state was fine and that she was undergoing some form of needed purification. She had not been open in Subud.
One day, unexpectedly, I experienced something very special. I was standing in the kitchen near the counter, while my wife was sitting at the table finishing her dinner. I felt the presence of my mother approaching. She (her spirit I assume) then entered my body, filling what seemed to be all the available space. The sensation was somewhat strange and pleasing at the same time. It lasted only a couple of seconds. Following this brief moment she was then, as I felt it, comfortably installed inside me. All of her, it seemed, was now present inside my body and soul.
Later I remembered reading in one of Bapak’s talks (I don’t remember which one), how a man or a son needs to be able to carry his own mother when entering Heaven.
What is special to me about this experience has to do with the perceived quality of my relationship towards my deceased mother. I loved my mother the way I could, but I also would at times criticize her for what I thought where wrong attitudes and behaviours. I did not, it seemed, meet the unconditional love requirement I thought was then required. In her later years, to be frank, I held her at some distance from me in fear of being overwhelmed by her needs as she grew older and more dependent on others. I felt I wasn’t the perfect son and therefore probably could not bring her to heaven.
Well, I’m not in heaven yet, but if God does grant me this wish when I die, I truly feel that my mom will be at my side when we enter this higher dimension. I also feel the same about my wife, and I do believe she feels the same about me.
We are all so connected.
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A Request from Mas Adji
My favourite Mas Adji saying is, "There is nothing so nice as to just be good."
Once, when I was a young helper from Australia visiting Wisma Subud, Mas Adji asked me to help him. There was a lady living there who would needed protection and support and he asked me if I would do latihan with her. He, meanwhile, would join us from his rooms across the compound.
In her bedroom, the latihan started, went very deep and she was on the floor when suddenly I did something we never do in the West, I crouched and took her head in both hands. Out of her head poured powerful Dutch business men. Though from memory all was silent, I became aware of the musical sound which I had come to associate with Adji's grandmother, Ibu Siti Sumari, which sometimes happens in my Latihan at home.
After what seemed like quite a long time it was over, and our sister lay on the bed exhausted, saying that she had never had such a strong experience before. I headed for the bathroom with the intention of doing a clearing or separating Latihan. However; not
only was there no need for this, but it was absolutely clear to me that it was not really me who had done latihan with her just now in that little bedroom in Cilandak, but Ibu Siti Sumari. She and Mas Adji were the helpers.
I later found out that this lady's Dutch ancestor had been something like Governor General to Indonesia when it was under that rule.
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Going Deeper than the Pain
I am getting to be of the age where people tell you, ‘It happens to us all sooner or later’ . . . in this case ‘arthritis and inflammation about the knees. Until recently I had indeed felt some occasional creaking about the knees while still managing to get about, which is impotant since I still have to work to supplement my old age pension. About three weeks ago, however, the knees began to stiffen, getting worse and painful, so that I could no longer bend to bathe – could only shower now - and last Friday I could hardly bear to stand up from a sitting position; such was the pain that I actually had to lift my legs with my hands to change their position. Not good! How would I manage to work, unless the condition improved?
Then, into my mailbox, all the way from Emmanuel in England, came Latif Allen’s book The Inner Mansion. I began to read it immediately and about halfway through came upon a paragraph in which Latif describes how he actually HEALED DEEPLY something causing him pain – instead of merely attempting to treat a surface symptom. He SURRENDERED DEEPER THAN THE PAIN. He went into his pain, saw flashbacks of emotionally devastating events from early childhood, which he had long consciously forgotten, and immediately released them to the Almighty for healing or freedom.
By doing the exact same thing, that is GOING INTO THE PAIN, I also brought up long ago painful memories, and immediately surrendered them to GOD. By the next day, 98% of my pain had vanished. This is fairly unbelievable to me, but it really happened.
By the day after that, as I continued the process, going into yet more pain, 99% of the pain was gone. Flexibility had returned to my legs; balance had returned; I could stand on one leg to get dressed.
The next day I actually walked five miles; it wore me out, but I did it! And today I am back at work – somewhat stiff but pain free.
So I can really recommend Latif’s book. Just that single paragraph was instrumental in a necessary healing and at just the needed moment; indeed, the Subud/GOD connection has never failed me yet in terms of bringing help one way or another at just the precise moment it is absolutely necessary.
Thank you, Latif (who I met in Bangalore, by the way) and thank you, Emmanuel!
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A Vision of Mary
I had a telephone call from a Muslim Subud couple, both second generation Subud members, who joined Subud a couple of years ago. The phone happened to ring while I was doing a special latihan for a Subud bro who was ill, and when I picked up the call the couple seemed to be rather excited. They wanted to share something, so I let them talk while still keeping very quiet inside.
It seems the Subud sister had had an extraordinary experience while doing the latihan: she had a vision of a woman surrounded/glowing in a bright light, and although she could not see the face she received that this was Miriam/Mary, the mother of Jesus.
As I started my own latihan again I felt lifted to another level, into a realm I had not been in for a long time.
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How I came to Subud
It was 1973 and I’d just got back from India, a bit of a hippy, and had moved into a flat in Southend in the south of England. All my neighbours were young people, and the couple next door invited me in for tea. Their flat was plastered with guru pics and reeked of incense. Yours truly had no interest whatsoever in spiritual stuff, but we started talking and at one point, frustrated at not being able to express what I felt, I said, "Gimme a bit of paper and pencil,"
I drew a rough circle and said, “We are either inside or outside of the circle - can't express it any other way. Oh, and I suppose there are several ways to get to the middle.” (Later, of course, I learn it is the other way round.) I draw lines from outside of the circle to the middle. Looked like a wobbly bicycle wheel, spokes and all.
This bloke stares at me and says, "Ever heard of Subud?" “Never heard of it,” I said. "My wife is a member," he says "And you have just drawn a rough version of the Subud symbol.” Want to meet an elder Subud member?" he says. “Don't mind,” I say. During the ensuing three months of the formal waiting period, the lady next door is doing regular latihan and I am having technicolour dreams.
At my opening, I was asked, pro forma, if I believed in the power of Almighty God. I replied, "Yes" and was duly opened. At my second latihan (two days later), someone said "Begin" and a tremendous rush of emotion swept through me and I sobbed like a child. I realised that I had lied, that I was a congenital liar - someone who would automatically say what he thought people wanted to hear. Of course, I knew absolutely nothing about God, let alone believing in Him.
My only consolation (and that relief came a long time later) was that God had heard it all before.
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A Call of Nature
The other day I was washing up after breakfast. Come to think of it, it was not the other day but twenty two years ago and we were living in the New Zealand countryside in a cottage that backed onto a small sliver of meadow between our wooden cottage and a wood, or, as they say there: the bush.
My mind is not habitually alert as I am usually thinking of something or other while washing up, but I suddenly became aware that there was a cow looking at me over the fence. It took me a little time to realise that it was actually trying to catch my attention while I was busy chattering in my mind while washing up. When its bovine eyes had locked onto mine as if to say, “Have I got your attention now?” it turned its head to its left and then again looked at me. By this time my mind had ceased chattering to itself and had become curious. I walked out of the cottage turned and climbed over the style into the small meadow. The cow led me down the fence for about a hundred metres where her calf had got stuck in the fence unable to free itself, which I was able to do in a moment.
Up to that moment in my life I had not known that it was possible for another being not of our species to ask for help, but in fact there are hundreds of accounts of such animal intelligence, and indigenous people can attest to that. Of course one’s pet cat can wait at the door and meow until you open it but he/she knows you and has been cared for by you. This cow, on the other hand, was a stranger. How did she know that I would respond and how did she know how to catch my eye?
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