i came to You late, Shiva, at age seventy five. although You came early to me when i was thirteen, i didn't know who You were, & i drifted elsewhere. i didn't know how to cultivate the connection, & maya simply blew me away. You came again when i was fourteen. the out of body journey that You took me on became a living seed planted deep within my memory to continue informing me as an adult. You showed me the holiness of this existence. You encouraged me with the vision of my true divine potential. You wrapped me in love. but for years i was like a blind person in a strange new room, feeling my way through unknown mysterious obstacles on my way to an equally cryptic & obscure destination. finally, when my old life is dead & gone & i huddle amidst the wreckage & the shards of the remaining scraps, finally, You come. You come in response to the collapse of my beleaguered walls, roof & foundation. You come because at last i am wide open & asking for You, calling out, even though i don't yet know Your name. my heart calls out the loudest of all, for the heart knows far more than the head alone. & behold! events transpire that bring me to You at last, & You send a helper with Your everlasting mantra: Om Namah Shivaya. gradually the blinders fall away as my sadhana deepens, & i take refuge in You via Your mantra: in You, my chosen Deity who also chose me, & did so before i knew Your name. i immerse myself in You, I throw myself off the cliff of the world into the limitless ocean of You. i paint pictures of You, write heartfelt poems to You, sing freely to You & i chant Your mantras. my room looks like a museum honoring You, & even more like a temple in full swing of celebrating Your sweet sacred presence. in fact, Shiva, You genuinely do reside here now with me & in me. You are living through me & i am drawn by You to all that can assist me to come even closer to You. actually, You take me to the consummation of my long journey to You, Shiva. now that i know Your name, we cannot be separated. we are one life & i am Your expression in the human world, as are others. it's a mystery & i only have training wheels for exploring such arcane wonders. it's all Your body anyway, just as i too am Your body. because i don't know what else to do, i throw myself upon You to know myself as one with You, vividly & purely. i won't let go. i won't stop & i won't be sidetracked. You, Shiva, are my swadharma, my destiny & fulfillment. blessed is Your name, given as medicine for all. blessed is Om Namah Shivaya.
You have given me a place to stand steadfast, an identity beyond the human-born, a way to face into life with dignity. You opened Your heart to me & i entered, steeped in ignorance & blind arrogant youth. long have i kept Your memory deep within, but like a ruby wrapped in ragged burlap or precious art forgotten in an attic. no longer, Lord Shiva, no, never again will i dare turn away from Your instruction, for age has given me the wisdom & love to venerate only the dearest blessings & You are the one who includes all of them! You are that which remains when the transient is no longer the focus of attention. oh my Lord Shiva, how brightly You do shine at the midheaven of mature awareness! i now can place myself in this time-bound realm only in relation to You, Lord Shiva, who have given me a place to stand steadfast, an identity beyond the human-born.
i look upon the patchwork of my life to find that You are the stitching that holds the many pieces together. You have revealed the symmetry that this woman's life has formed over time. the random struggles & failings were sincere efforts at understanding what i could offer to this world. the pattern comes clear over all this time. with distance, the patchwork pattern resolves into a beautiful design -- it shows Your face, my Lord Shiva, as You enfold me close, next to Your heart, & everything makes sense at last!