Hello friends. This really has nothing to do with our worker-owned co-op.  The only lead-in is the summer release of this Julia Roberts movie based on the book Eat, Pray, Love (which, for reasons I won’t go into here, I strongly disliked) and the subsequent fervent merchandising of candles! fragrances! home decor! to coincide with the distribution of the film.  At some point during the press junket Julia Roberts mentioned a certain guru with whom she felt a particular kinship, and into whose wisdom she tried to tap while making the movie (or something like that).

Rest assured the following is not us here at Co-op One-Oh-Eight trying to capitalize on the legend/aura/history/etc. of Maharaj-ji.  It is more like me (Erica) going, huh, I guess I sort of have a story, too.  Actually I have three.  And if anyone has any interest or curiosity after this particular post, then maybe I’ll tell you the others.

The first dream

(February 2008) This was several months ago.

There was some kind of cataclysmic earthquake or event, the end result of which was a massive flood.  The ground around me was shaking and splitting apart.  Maybe I was on a houseboat, or some kind of floating island, and could feel it pitching and lurching beneath my feet as the water rose in great swells and seeped around the edges.  You know how dreams are.  It was something like that.  It was bad.

I was trying to find my children- not because I thought I could protect or save them, but because I knew we were all going to die.  This was it, this was the end, and I wanted to be with them so they weren’t afraid.  I wanted us all to die together.  That was very important, that I hold them at the end.  Or maybe it was just that I needed to see them one last time.  You know how dreams are.

But I couldn’t get to them.  The ground pitched, the swells swelled, and I was in the water, floating as giant waves rose and fell and all around me was sea and tide and nothing and there was no way I could ever find them or reach them or even know what ever became of them, where they were and what they felt and how they cried at the end.

Then it was calm.  Like I was lying submerged in a tub, and someone pulled the plug and the water was slowing draining around me.  My eyes were closed, but there was light, so bright that I could almost see beyond my eyelids.  The water drained.  I watched it slowly shimmer and dissipate, behind my closed eyelids.  And here’s the thing- I knew that something terrible had happened, that everything I knew and loved, every ONE I knew and loved, my children, my family, my life- everyone and everything was dead and gone.  And yet I felt okay.  I felt completely and totally okay.  I can’t remember now if that was before or after I realized there was someone there.  Oh yes, there was someone there.  Beyond my eyelids, in this bright, citrusy, glaring and obscure light after the water, there was this shadowy figure.  I could only make out the outlines of a person.  My eyes were closed, after all.  But it was Maharaj-ji.  I knew it was Maharaj-ji.  And I was afraid to open my eyes, because like I said, I had just lost everything in the world that I ever loved- I had just lost THE WORLD itself, and yet I was strangely nonplussed.  But I was afraid that if I opened my eyes, maybe I would have been wrong- maybe it wouldn’t be Maharaj-ji that I saw, and then… and then…  And then, well, anyway, I woke up.  I never did open my eyes.