Letter written to Swami Muktananda of Ananda Ashram in Kerala
We had been open almost two years. It was one of those periods where I was crossing difficult inner and outer terrain. I was depleted. Went to Ananda Ashram in Kerala for five days to try to replenish. This letter of gartitude was written on the last day. I gave it to Swamiji just before I left.
Swamiji is the Spiritual Head of Ananda Ashram. He is the lineage holder of a line of Great Beings—Papa Ramdas…Mataji…Swami Satchidanda. He was commanded by Swami Satchidanda before he died to head the ashram.
There is nothing like Ananda Ashram in all of India. It is known for its Heart. And its generosity.
I have included the letter to give you a sense of part of the inner struggle one goes thru to help lift suffering from the Voiceless Ones. I think most that have completely focused on the Work go thru it in their own way.
Om Namah Shivaya
Dear Swami Muktananda,
Back in my room after your teaching.
Not sure where to begin. I wasn’t going to talk to you about this. For I felt it wouldn’t help and I didn’t feel that I could convey to any being what is going on in my Heart of Hearts and how desperate I am.
I’ve been blessed in this lifetime with extraordinary perseverance and diligence. The flip side of that blessing is that I am a cosmically slow learner. I can go through things again and again without getting the lesson. My sadhana (spiritual work) is not an elegant one. I don’t really get purified through insights. God deals with my stubbornness and stupidity by hitting me again and again as I persevere. And finally collapse. Then I painfully pick myself up from the ashes and again, slowly, begin moving. But somehow I’m aware in those times, in that process, that inner garbage has been blasted away. There is more spaciousness in my mind and I am closer to my Heart.
I am doing the Shelter because I “cannot not do it”. Enjoying. Being happy. Or unhappy…has nothing to do with it. I know that I am supposed to do it. I know that if I didn’t, many, many “Voiceless Creatures” would go through unimaginable suffering. And in my Heart there is no way—no matter what—that I could walk away.
I have given it everything I have in me. There is nothing left. I feel bankrupt—physically, emotionally, psychically, and spiritually. What lays before me is an incredibly complex set of things to do. Some almost overwhelmingly difficult. I shall not retreat, but at this point I don’t have the strength to do it.
Your teaching today filled me with Light. With hope. I will pray, for the first time in my life, from the bottom of my Heart. And it is the bottom. He must do it for me.
I tell you all this in deep gratitude. With a vastly deepened caring/love for you.
I lay this gratitude/my Heart at your feet. Knowing it is He who must rescue me.
I am so sorry I am leaving. But I must return to do the Work. You have all the blessings I am able to give you.
I am so glad you are there for me. And for the many.
With love, Leslie