The light coming in from a closed window represents to me the beginning, or the end of my life.  Before I was born, I was totally in darkness. Obviously, I don’t recall that time of life very well, but I get glimmerings of that state when I go for a swim and go deep underwater. It is dark and there is a little glow of light at the top of the water. Swimming, by the way, is my favorite activity, I must have done a lot of it before I was born.


When I came out into this world, I wasn’t very happy about it. People tell me I cried a lot and just wouldn’t shut up very easily. Maybe, I am still in that state, complaining a lot and, perhaps, trying to figure out what is going on.


The view from inside the window is all cluttered up, sometimes there are too many leaves blocking the view. I don’t know what lies beyond the leaves, but they do make a pretty pattern. This is completely symbolic of the world we live in; it is full of patterns of light and shadow that really obscure the source of the light.


My journey through life has been much like that. I always wanted to dig deeper; I was, I think, a seeker from the day I was born. I was never satisfied with the easy answers, I always had to look beyond the patterns of light and shade. This helped me a lot in my studies, as I would always go to the fundamentals of any subject. As a result, I did very well and finally made it to an IIT.


When I suffered some personal tragedies in life as a teen-ager, I tried to dig deeper into spiritual subjects, never quite satisfied with what I saw. I must have read the Bhagavat Gita over a dozen times by the age of twenty; there are passages of great beauty I this book, making pretty patterns, like the leaves in the window.


Looking beyond the patterns,  much of the book seemed like a justification for getting a warrior to fight and kill people he didn’t really want to kill. When he wasn’t convinced, about the need for doing this, he was told the soul survives the body, so he wasn’t really destroying anything worthwhile. Plus, the people were going to die anyway.


Not fully satisfied, I kept looking for answers everywhere. I find a lot of them when I met a self-realized person, the Bengali saint Anandmayee Ma. She was the light behind the shadows and the patterns of leaves. Just looking at her made me realize that there is a much higher spiritual state, and I could get there in a human body. She didn’t talk about the Gita or about gyana yoga, she was the supreme reality herself. I visited her many times while she was in the human body and she gave me  glimpses of the divine, again and again.


I had to continue my spiritual journey without her. I experienced more of the light and shade of this world when I got married, raised a family and worked on making a living. There was even more light when I moved to North America, as the struggle for existence was a little easier here. Also, the very best thing about North America, I found, was the great public library system. Finally, I could read as many books as I wanted on almost any topic, without spending a dollar.


The window showed a bit more light when my wife and I found Om Swami ji on the internet. We loved his talks and his on-line courses. Now, I look forward to the day when I get to meet this source of light in person.


As I said before,  the light in the window represents both a beginning and an ending. The light could get stronger as the day goes by or it could get weaker if it is approaching the end of the day. This is the circle of life: we are born and we fade away. Perhaps, we come back, but maybe not in the same place. Perhaps, we will be looking out of another window in the future, somewhere else in the universe.