How I came to meet Baba Hari Dass: a tale of divine intervention!
In 1998, my approach to asana practice left me with a painful back injury that was not getting better despite physiotherapy.
During this time I was invited to teach a workshop at Trinity College on the connections of prayer, movement and dance. This kind of movement was gentle for my aching body, and the event was a success. A lovely woman at the workshop stayed to thank me, and told me about a yoga retreat she thought I would like. It was the Ashtanga Yoga Fellowship retreat at Shadow Lake camp. With my doctor’s blessing, I decided to go, even though I had never heard of it before.
My eyes and heart were opened to a whole new world of yoga beyond asana…..I learned about the eight limbs of yoga, and discovered the joys of kirtan, pranayama, Patanjali, Hanumanji, meditation, yajna, seva and stick dancing! And I experienced the sweet presence of Babaji himself, and the kindness and generosity of the satsang surrounding him. For the record, Babaji does not speak! But you cn carry on a lively conversation with him: his responses are written on a tiny board worn on his belt. He is always direct, and he can be very funny too!
I continued to attend annual retreats, and practised sadhana daily in between. I fell in love with Babaji’s “Sadhana for Busy People” and practice it to this very day, marvelling at its depth. For the first few years, I took LOTS of notes and hung onto all the words of lectures and discussions. So many pearls of wisdom! And then one day something shifted….and the realization came to me that none of this was about words at all….rather, it was all about PRESENCE. There was always a shimmering peace emanating through Babaji that was more meaningful than any words could describe…I only needed to become still enough inside to perceive it. What a gift.
The funny thing is, I never saw the woman who told me about the retreat again. But I am forever grateful to have been led to Babaji, his lineage and the dear friends I have made along the way.
Thank you Babaji!