This is a letter I wrote some time ago to Swami Kriyananda, in reply to a note from him to my husband Dave and me.

Dear Swamiji,

In response to your message, Id like to share with you something that happened when I first came to Ananda.

If you remember, I saw you and a group of Ananda people in Los Angeles, where you had gone on a lecture tour. It was January, 1982, and I was still waiting for my admission as a nun to Self-Realization Fellowships monastic order. You took a group of us to Forest Lawn Cemetery, where Yoganandas body lies, and I remember very clearly walking just behind you as you mounted the steps to the crypt.

I was praying to Master desperately for guidance. I didnt particularly care for a nice life in the mountains, and the community aspect of Ananda had little or no appeal to me, either. I wanted then, more than anything, a life of discipleship. So there I was, asking myself why I should come to Ananda, as you had suggested at our meeting the day before, when I heard the answer. It was as clear a guidance as I had ever gotten from Master. I swear I could almost hear his voice in my head. All it said was, Learn discipleship from this man. That was it.

My years at Ananda have never been easy. Many times I wished I could have been in a safer, more structured environment, with my sadhana and living arrangements all taken care of. But Master never promised me that. He only promised a living example of discipleship, the best he could provide, and it was you. Whether I availed myself of the opportunity to learn is another matter, but you, Sir, have fulfilled, and are still fulfilling, your part of the bargain. I consider myself blessed more than I deserve, to have had you in my life. In a way, I didnt choose you or Ananda; Master did it for me because I was sincere.

In his love,

Maria Warner

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