Swami Ken was here recently, and it just so worked out that I was the one who arranged both of his meditation programs here in Savannah. He and his two assistants stayed here at the house with us, and so, as his host, I got to spend a lot of extra time with him.
I spent years as a traveling musician, and so I can relate with Swami a lot in that reguard. He travels most of the time, all over the United States, Canada, and India. He does this purely on donations, and by selling his book, silk scarves from India, and other little trinkets. This is a life of constant phone calls, e-mails, setting up events, relying on people to promote, and then the constant travel. You are always staying with someone, and life is an adventure. Swami says “I just want to get the message out there”, and I hear the passion and the purpose in his voice. I know that passion, that total dedication of your life to a purpose, and that is the thing I love best about Swami. His total dedication to his true purpose.
This kind of life isn’t for everyone. There is a price to pay if you want to be a Swami.
There is a price to pay if you want to be a musician. No matter what you do, with any decision that you make in life, there is a price to pay. If you go to school or don’t go to school, join the armed forces or don’t join the armed forces, pursue your passion or not pursue your passion, everything has a price.
Swami and I had great conversations, his meditation programs were wonderful and a success, and in the end, I found that he is just a normal down to earth guy. He is more fun than most people though. He laughs a lot. He drinks milk, eats cheese, he likes coffee, and he doesn’t judge anybody for anything. He knows. On Wednesday, after he accompanied me to a class where he taught Pranayama exercises and did a short meditation with myself and two other people, we went for a swim in the ocean. It was my appointed job to at a certain time say, “And now Swami must go to the ocean!” which I enjoyably did. We had a good time laughing and talking, and teasing his assistant Ben about sharks and jellyfish, and muddy ocean water. As we were leaving Tybee, he said “Could you please turn around and go back so I can have my picture taken with that shark?” He told me “I like to take funny pictures.” (a fact that I was already aware of)
Swami and his pals left a few minutes ago, and he left me inspired. I am inspired to be a little bit more vocal, a little bit more direct. I often worry about how I come across, because I don’t ever want to offend anyone. The truth is that the truth quite often offends people. So that will be something for me to work on in the coming months.
– What are the prices you pay for the decisions you have made?
– Did you know that if there are things about yourself that you don’t like, that you can change them?
– Do you know that the world is not happening to you, but that you are happening to the world?
– Meditation brings self awareness, and what could be more important than that?