Then I think, but I spend time every day in meditation as well. So that’s also a kind of investing. Adi Da, my spiritual teacher, says “You become what you meditate on.” Therefore, study or meditate on something good, contemplate someone who is doing good!
You become what you meditate on. This Law summarizes the Process whereby I become your unique Advantage. As My devotee, although you perceive beings and things and phenomena of all kinds, you are in Communion with Me. As My devotee, you are concentrated in Me. In the midst of all that arises, you constantly give your attention to Me through your practice of the Way of the Heart. When you Contemplate Me with devotion, you are Contemplating the Divine Reality, Which is Full, Perfect. When you feelingly-Contemplate Me, you are Contemplating the complete Divine Revelation.
In the summer of 2000, Adi Da granted daily Darshan in the front yard of The Manner of Flowers, His residence at The Mountain of Attention. The yard was beautifully landscaped with a large pond in the middle. It was not design for formal occasions. Every afternoon all the devotees would gather at the gate and be let in. If you got there early you could easily find a place with a good view. But by the time the usher attendants had brought everybody in and seated them, your little piece of prime real estate could easily be taken by then.
On this occasion I arrived rather late. But somehow there was a prime spot near the front of the pond the attendant pointed me to. I took the seat and then again a small shuffle. Now I’m out on a little one person extension over the pool. Probably for Adi Da to walk out and feed the coy fish. Can’t be moved. Adi Da sat in His chair under a big oak and if He looked straight ahead I was in His direct line of vision.
Sure enough, at one point Adi Da fixed His gaze straight ahead for a period of time as He often would do during formal Darshans. I guess you could say I was the “deer in the headlights” but it didn’t feel that way. Just remember being lifted by the brightness of the Happiness that overwhelmed me. My left arm went up with the hand in a mudra and “I” was firmly suspended from identification with the body mind for however ecstatically long.
I didn’t go into Nirvakalpa Samadhi from a Saintly glance like Adi Da did with Rang Avadhoot. I’ve continued to go on for years developing my karmas and such. But nowadays, that Darshan, along with others, and a little bit of “practice” on my part is revealing this underlying sense that I never really left the Occasion!
Brian Hanley called from Marin saying he would have come, except for the bad rainy weather. James Steinberg and Steve Brown emailed from India, regretting that they couldn’t make it.
Malcolm Dunshee and Amos Schieber, Beth Soliday and Sondra Dylan told some stories about Windsor. It was a happy memorial remembering Windsor’s humorous character, his autistic quirks and sweet heart, and his overwhelming love for Adi Da and infectious happiness in talking about Bhagavan.
Windsor was also musically gifted, and had a great eye for photography. His nature photos and pictures of Adi Da are on display here on his Facebook page. His mountain website pics got over 5 million hits.
The big event of the day in the last months of his life were posting pictures from his hikes and pictures of Adi Da and talks and leelas from Beloved Da’s Teaching time.
We will miss Windsor.
Xandra also reminded everyone to fill out her/his Advanced Directive forms from Mate Mote and post them on or above the fridge.
James Steinberg wrote: “Yes, it is good that we understand that leelas should be about Bhagavan Adi Da and about His Work and not just our own subjectivity and so forth.
That is great Instruction from Him which we should also seriously consider, and I obviously am not trying to discount that but the main thing is that we have to TELL THEM with feeling and honesty as who we are as His devotees, and not try to be some advanced person. Gerald told all of his leelas originally trying to make some point about the Perfect Knowledge practice and it was not working. And so they were all rewritten to just be straightforward and devotional leelas that reflect our real understanding and practice, not trying to be some great devotee in the abstract.
And so everyone would not be a devotee if there was not some real recognition, we all have that place in moments, and Windsor certainly did, no matter how rough his edges were, and it is just going to that place and speaking from there.
Bhagavan used to say that if there was devotion you could just say “blurb blurb blurb” (He put His finger on His lips and kind of just farted almost) and it would serve!”
I’m glad that he [Windsor] wrote up at least that leela. But that is one of the difficult things when we lose any long long time devotee–the leelas are gone from that person. So I hope that we can collect any of them that were on facebook or elsewhere and get them to the archives.
If we knew he was going to pass, we would have asked him to record leelas for sure. The same thing goes for Windsor’s memorial: if leelas are told definitely record them.
Bhagavan was also interesting in the early days about leelas. He wanted a poster of Woodstock that I was in, put in the archives to show that His devotees were at things like that. So it is really a broader matter than you would get from the endless presentations about how to tell a leela that seem to restrict it only to some kind of highly evolved speech, because you are not going to get that from us bozos anyway, but our devotion and histories are of interest as showing Bhagavan’s greatness in working with all of us.
Write (or record) your leelas before your transition time and send them to Archives!
James Steinberg, emails from India, Oct 29, 2016
I am sitting here in Jaipur,India, and just heard word that Windsor Riley unexpectedly passed away in his sleep. As Bhagavan Adi Da said, “Death is a Perfect Insult” and I am saddened by this untimely transition. I will miss Windsor…. Here’s James full post + Windsor’s poetry.
Pamela Williamson writes from Hermitage: “Windsor’s photo is at Bhagavan’s Feet here in Temple Adi Da and all devotees are offering DPOC [Devotional Prayer of Changes] for his Easy Transition.” Thanks to Brooks Kirkbride for forwarding Windsor’s transition to the RSO.
Timothy Toye said: One time I was riding in Windsor’s truck and was getting cold. I asked him if he could turn the heat on. Windsor replied, “How’s your meditation practice? How much do you study every day…”
Robert Rothemich wrote Mate Moce’s email on the Matrix:
Our friend and devotee Windsor Riley passed away suddenly Thursday Oct 27 at his home in Lake County. He was found peaceful in his bed in the evening by his roommate Michael Harings. Windsor had not been in overall good health, but was not thought to be dying.
Windsor has been an active devotee since the 1970’s when he came to San Rafael from Florida. He has always been known as a kind and humble person, in love with his Guru. On this Facebook link, one can see the beautiful devotional entries that he has been posting about Adi Da, up to the day before he passed.
Windsor had an active and contemplative love of Nature. Over the years he hiked many mountains in California and took stunning photos which he also posted on Facebook.
Windsor lived in San Rafael for most of his Adidam life, selling plants from his van around the Bay Area. In recent years, he had moved to Lake County, something of a homecoming to Adi Da. He was active with the 3C men’s group and lived in a men’s household.
Windsor struggled with alcohol addiction and did much work with AA over the years. He had been sober for over a year, but accessories had taken a toll on his health, especially his lungs. Windsor had a humble and inspiring attitude toward his struggles with Right Life.
Windsor’s passing was unexpected and he did not have savings. We invite and encourage devotees to offer financial assistance for his funeral costs to the Mate Moce Paypal account.
Windsor’s body was taken by the Lake County coroner because his death was unexpected. A two hour vigil was done with the body by devotees before it was taken. All devotees are encouraged to invoke Bhagavan’s Blessing on Windsor’s transition over the next three days in their puja and meditation. Friends will be going to the funeral home today to serve his vigil.
Ruchiradama Quandra Sukhapur was informed of Windsor’s passing to offer prayers for him at The Outshining Brightness at Naitauba.
In service and gratitude,
for the Mate Moce Guild
The paypal account to help with Windsor’s funeral expenses is: firstname.lastname@example.org
An Excerpt From Autobiography of a Yogi By Swami Paramahansa Yogananda, Chapter 47: I Return to the West (pages 966-973)
…. The year-end holidays are celebrated annually at the Los Angeles center with an eight-hour group meditation on December 24th (Spiritual Christmas), followed the next day by a banquet (Social Christmas). The festivities this year were augmented by the presence of dear friends and students from distant cities who had arrived to welcome home the three world travelers.
…. “Mr. Dickinson!” The next parcel contained a gift which I had bought in a Calcutta bazaar. “Mr. Dickinson will like this,” I had thought at the time. A dearly beloved disciple, Mr. Dickinson had been present at every Christmas festivity since the 1925 founding of Mt. Washington. At this eleventh annual celebration, he was standing before me, untying the ribbons of his square little package.
“The silver cup!” Struggling with emotion, he stared at the present, a tall drinking cup. He seated himself some distance away, apparently in a daze. I smiled at him affectionately before resuming my role as Santa Claus.
The ejaculatory evening closed with a prayer to the Giver of all gifts; then a group singing of Christmas carols.
Mr. Dickinson and I were chatting together sometime later.
“Sir,” he said, “please let me thank you now for the silver cup. I could not find any words on Christmas night.”
“I brought the gift especially for you.”
“For thirty-three years I have been waiting for that silver cup! It is a long story, one I have kept hidden within me.” Mr. Dickinson looked at me shyly. “The beginning was dramatic: I was drowning. My older brother had playfully pushed me into a fifteen-foot pool in a small town in Nebraska. I was only five years old then. As I was about to sink for the second time under the water, a dazzling multicolored light appeared, filling all space. In the midst was the figure of a man with tranquil eyes and a reassuring smile.
My body was sinking for the third time when one of my brother’s companions bent a tall slender willow tree in such a low dip that I could grasp it with my desperate fingers. The boys lifted me to the bank and successfully gave me first-aid treatment.
“Twelve years later, a youth of seventeen, I visited Chicago with my mother. It was 1893; the great World Parliament of Religions was in session. Mother and I were walking down a main street, when again I saw the mighty flash of light. A few paces away, strolling leisurely along, was the same man I had seen years before in vision. He approached a large auditorium and vanished within the door.
“‘Mother,’ I cried, ‘that was the man who appeared at the time I was drowning!’
“She and I hastened into the building; the man was seated on a lecture platform. We soon learned that he was Swami Vivekananda of India. *337 After he had given a soul-stirring talk, I went forward to meet him. He smiled on me graciously, as though we were old friends. I was so young that I did not know how to give expression to my feelings, but in my heart I was hoping that he would offer to be my teacher. He read my thought.
“‘No, my son, I am not your guru.’ Vivekananda gazed with his beautiful, piercing eyes deep into my own. ‘Your teacher will come later. He will give you a silver cup.’ After a little pause, he added, smiling, ‘He will pour out to you more blessings than you are now able to hold.’
“I left Chicago in a few days,” Mr. Dickinson went on, “and never saw the great Vivekananda again. But every word he had uttered was indelibly written on my inmost consciousness. Years passed; no teacher appeared. One night in 1925 I prayed deeply that the Lord would send me my guru.
A few hours later, I was awakened from sleep by soft strains of melody. A band of celestial beings, carrying flutes and other instruments, came before my view. After filling the air with glorious music, the angels slowly vanished.
“The next evening I attended, for the first time, one of your lectures here in Los Angeles, and knew then that my prayer had been granted.” We smiled at each other in silence.
“For eleven years now I have been your Kriya Yoga disciple,” Mr. Dickinson continued. “Sometimes I wondered about the silver cup; I had almost persuaded myself that Vivekananda’s words were only metaphorical. But on Christmas night, as you handed me the square box by the tree, I saw, for the third time in my life, the same dazzling flash of light. In another minute I was gazing on my guru’s gift which Vivekananda had foreseen for me thirty-three years earlier—a silver cup!”
*337. Swami Vivekananda was the chief disciple of the Christlike master Sri Ramakrishna.