Baba made his grace and teachings so available to seekers. Almost everyone who met Baba has their own story about how, in wonderful and mysterious ways, they came to learn about Baba Muktananda.
This is my story.
In the early 1970s, when I was about fourteen or fifteen and living in Seattle, Washington, I started having spiritual experiences that made me want to know my deeper Self. I realized that I needed to find a teacher who could show me the path.
When I was sixteen, I began practicing hatha yoga to see if I could find some answers there. And one day in hatha yoga class, I noticed a big poster of a very happy looking man. I asked the hatha yoga teacher, “Who is this?” He said, “Oh. That is Baba Muktananda. He is a real saint. And… he is coming to Seattle. You should meet him.”
A couple of months later, I was at the home of some very good family friends who lived a few blocks away from me. There, lying on the kitchen table, I saw a book with the title Baba Muktananda: American Tour 1970 and on the cover was the same photo that I’d seen months before in the hatha yoga studio. I said to the mother of the household that I’d seen this picture before. And I said that I had heard that this man is coming to Seattle, but I didn’t know where he was going to be staying. She smiled, cocked her head to one side, and said, “Well, honey, he’s going to be staying right here in this house.”
My heart jumped! I said, “Wow! Can I borrow the book to read before he comes?” She said, “Yeah, go right ahead.”
I went home and immediately began reading Baba’s book. As I read Baba’s words, a silent voice inside kept saying, “Yes—this is how it is.” Somehow I knew every word was true. I knew Baba was a real teacher, a real Guru. I used to fall asleep looking at his photo.
A few weeks later, Baba arrived in Seattle. Once he had been there a day or two, I mustered my courage. I put on my best paisley Indian kurta, picked some flowers from our garden, and walked up the hill to meet Baba. Before I entered I hesitated. “Am I really ready for this?” I knew it would change my life. At that moment a tall young man appeared at the front door and said, “Hi! Are you here to meet Baba?” I said yes.
He said, “Great. Baba loves to meet people. Come on in!”
In a few moments I found myself before Baba. He asked where I was from. “From just down the street,” I said, though inwardly, I felt that Baba already knew everything there was to know about me. My heart was flooded with a profound love that was beyond words. After that I came every day to have Baba’s darshan while he was in Seattle. I knew I had met my Guru.
I continued to meditate and repeat the mantra Baba had given me. The next time I met Baba was in California in 1975. I had graduated high school by then, and soon after I participated in my first Shaktipat Intensive and started offering seva at the Siddha Yoga Ashram in Oakland.
For me and so many other seekers, it was because Baba so tirelessly and generously made the Siddha Yoga teachings available by traveling the world that we were able to meet Baba, receive his grace, and have our lives transformed.
I had been searching for a Guru, but the Guru came looking for me. Baba had traveled 10,000 miles, and I only had to walk four blocks.