First thing on Saturday is the two mile race. It's raining, its blustery and it doesn't look like much fun. It isn't much fun. It feels to me like I'm crawling along, and going through a lot of discomfort for my troubles. But I know from experience that these impressions can often be delusive, and I manage to press on. Sure enough, I cross the line in 11:35, nine seconds faster than last week.
There's nothing much on today; Guru shows up to give prasad around lunchtime and that's around it. After we spend a couple of weeks meditating with him, Guru recommends we take a day or so off when we get home, just so we can absorb everything we have received. It isn't always possible, but this time I get to have a few quiet days in New York itself. Over the next couple of days, the driving rain means I don't get to see Guru much; it's time now to take stock of the past couple of weeks. It seems like months have passed. I start writing up these diary entries on the Internet so I won't forget them; the first ones seem like an age away.
It is raining very heavily; myself and Arthur make the long walk to see the same singing group that performed on Yogamayas's birthday at a venue an hour away. Luckily a car pulls up and gives us a lift and we escape the worst of the downpour. The place itself has a bit of a marketplace quality and the girls have to perform against a backdrop of noise; however they do their job most admirably and I for one had a very nice meditation. We drive back to Aspiration-Ground; the entire surface is waterlogged, there's not a snowball's chance of there being a meditation tonight.
Sunday morning is much the same wet soggy deal; I'm pretty much determined to go out for a long run no matter what and actually quite enjoy myself once I warm up and get into it. As yesterday, Guru comes to give prasad; the rain is pouring down to such an extent that he has to stay in the car with the windows up. We can just about see him through the rainspeckeled windows as we pick up our prasad. As I'm waiting in line, I notice that I'm actually quite tensed up and anxious about being in a soulful frame of mind because this is the one chance I'll get to see Guru today, and again some inner inspiration whispers to me. Remember, the inner communication between Master and student is the only thing that matters; when you are in your heart you can have all those intimate conversations you feel you need to have outwardly.... and I realise that some part of me has been treating this like some outer exam, that I should relax because I'm in the heart and inner and outer communication are the same. I feel noticeably lighter as I make my way along th prasad line, lighter than I can remember feeling in a long time. Then as I am walking past, Guru lets down the car window to reveal a face lost in contemplating a reality I can only imagine, as if to enforce the reality of this vast inner world of communication...Did he do it in response to my thoughts? Well, there's a question. Pramodan was in front of me, after working day and night on Guru's new synthesizer; it might well have been him. But you know something, Pramodan's going to think it was him, and I'm going to think it was me, and the fellow behind me probably thinks it was him too, and who knows, maybe that's the way Sri Chinmoy wants it, one can never underestimate the synchronicity of purpose that seems to occur so frequently in the life of a spiritual Master.
It dries up by Sunday evening, enough for a short meditation function. Short and special. By now, you've probably realised that most of the meditation functions are interspersed with performances by his students of spiritual song, poetry and theatre. Not this one. This one was just Guru. Reading out prayers he had composed in Malaysia with utmost intensity, which in turn brings that intensity to the meditation I'm having as I listen. Such yearning for the Truth as he reads them; it is as if he is separated from infinite Bliss by a sliver-thin glass pane he is desperate to break through. This is the role of a spiritual Master; one minute to identify with the seeker's yearnings for the Highest, the next to show him what the goal actually looks like.
And then the last day comes. Packing, before we get to see Guru one last time, as he gives out lunchtime prasad. I am already thinking to the weeks ahead, in the knowledge that I have found new capacities bloom inside me every time I return from New York, I am already thinking about how to lift myself clear of the destructive habits of the past and into a new tomorrow, I am already flying on the wings of future promise.
The End (at last)