It’s strange that something I have puzzled over for fifty years should suddenly come clear to me now, simply because it was someone else who asked me the question. It has happened to me often, however: I’ve pondered something for years, but only when the same question was put to me by someone else did I suddenly know the solution.

In this case, it was something my Guru said to me at least twice, and perhaps three times: “After I am gone, the monks must live in separate colonies from the women renunciates.” Later I discovered he had not said this to the women, who were in fact running things. Why, I asked myself, would he say something so important to the future of his work only to me? Granted, I was in charge of the monks, but my responsibility at the time spread no further than that. In later years, my concern for finding a separate piece of property on Mount Washington was even turned against me by Mrinalini Mata who wrote the other directors in support of my ouster from SRF, “I always felt that Kriyananda’s desire to find a separate property was because he wanted to get the monks out from under Daya Mata’s control.”

Why did Master tell me, but not Daya Mata? My puzzlement regarding Master’s words was increased by the fact that Señor Cuaron, our center leader and representative in Mexico, told me once during a visit, “Master said to me yesterday, ‘I see you in a building down on the corner of the property on Mount Washington.’” This was where San Rafael Avenue meets Rome Drive. Here, in later years, the monks’ ashram was constructed.

Why, I asked myself, had Master insisted to me so strongly that the monks must live altogether separately from the women, then not tell anyone else, especially the women in charge, that this was his wish? And why would he then tell Mr. Cuaron he saw him in another building on the Mount Washington property, a building which he must have known would be the monks’ ashram?

A friend recently put this question to me, motivating me to put it to Master in meditation. Instantly the answer came: “Because I wanted you to think of yourself as working separately from the women directors! You could never have done the work you have done, except independently of them.”

One naturally wonders why he didn’t simply come out and tell me so. It was necessary, however, that the karmic pattern follow its own course. I often found in his guidance that he gave only subtle hints of his deeper meaning. My service to him would not have worked out as it did, had I known his intentions from the start. I am grateful, though, for what he did state clearly at the time. I might have lacked the courage to think as independently as I did, had it not been for those words of his to me.

The End