Thursday, August 30, 2007

My Spirit Guide Decides to Visit.

It was an auspicious occasion this morning. I woke up to the caw, caw, caw of the crows which fill this city like pigeons in NY, but above the cacophony, I heard a high pitched shrill, a scream.

Back in 1978, after finishing high school, I had intended to attend college at Cooper Union in NYC, intern at BBD&O eventually becoming the Creative Director for a number of high profile clients. I simply expected to get in without a problem, so I didn't spend the time carefully crafting my application and presenting my portfolio. Needless to say, I did not get in, and ended up going to a college in the middle of nowhere in New Mexico.

I was only there for one semester, but it was long enough to engage me in Native American studies. One of my classmates, Joe Red Bear, was the first of his family to live off the reservation and they called him an apple (red on the outside, white on the inside). He was a big, burly dude with a huge smile. He was taking criminal science so he could go back to the reservation as a cop. His grandfather was a shaman, an elder who knew the ways of the old medicine, who had taught Joe a lot about his religion and instilled a pride in him as one of the few living indigenous peoples of America. He was willing to take me to see his grandfather.

After many trips to the reservation, speaking with his grandfather about the old ways, I was invited on a Spirit Quest. Typically, Native Americans don't allow white people to participate because many of these new age, yoga practicing, granola eating hippies tend to turn it into something crass. It is a sacred rite of passage and I was lucky enough to be someone that the grandfather had seen something within and granted me passage to this other world.

I can't go into many of the details of this journey - let's just say, there are substances injested that aid in enabling your spirit guide to show themselves. Spirit Guides are typically animals that provide you with their strengths in order for you to reach higher realms of existence. The activities begin in the early evening and go at least all night, but for as long as required. I was told that my spirit guide would appear and show me the way. When I met her, it instantly made sense. I lay there on the ground at the mouth of a cave on the side of a mesa. The red tailed hawk soared above me, slowly circling in the rising heat coming off the desert. She dove down and rose, dove and rose while I watched the sun go down. There is a lot more to this story, but let's get back to Kolkata.

We just moved to Ekta Heights and live at the top of one of the buildings. I woke up to her call, amidst the din of the crows. I sat up, looked out the window overlooking the terrace, and there she was. This hawk was more brown, and bigger. Its talons gripped the pipe fence and it extended its wings to full span. I approached the door expecting her to leave in a flurry of feathers, but she stayed there, looking at me as I closed the door behind me. She tucked in her wings and settled down. She was about 20 feet from the door. The crows were incensed with her. I walked slowly toward her until I was about 8 feet away. She eyed me suspiciously, but stayed motionless, ignoring the crows. I very slowly sat down cross legged on the floor of the terrace still looking at her. I stayed quite still. Suddenly, in a burst of feathers, she flew right over my head, causing me to jump in alarm.

I then realized there were three or four hawks flying in and out among the four towers, chasing crows and being chased by crows. I consider this a most auspicious greeting - to be welcomed by a spirit guide is quite an important affair. I was meant to be in Kolkata, at Ekta Heights, for a reason and I'll need to find out why. Most times, the connections only happen later, with the crystal clear view of hindsight. The last hawk who visited me was in Aurora, IL where we had been living for 4 years. She came to me just before Lee asked me to go work for him in Chicago. While the job was less than pleasant, I met and befriended Jason who was married to a woman from Pune. He was in the midst of moving to India and he inspired me to finally make my move here as well. I wonder what is in store for us in the future. :-)


Anonymous said...

Your experience about your spirit guide is really interesting.

In one of your previous blog you have mentioned that you intend to keep a driver by paying Rupees 900-1200 per day! I dont know who suggested this to you or if you are calculating in terms of dollar but I must warn you that you are making a BIG MISTAKE!!! You are letting yourself to be robbed.

Here , in Kolkata , drivers who work for 8-9 hrs/day on an average get only Rupees 100-150 per day i.e. Rs 3000-3500 per month. Now even if you want your driver to work for around 12 hrs/day on an average then also Rupees 200-220 per day is more than enough. It means you will be paying Rupees.6000-7200 per month.Any driver who will get 6000-7200 per month will be more than happy to work as long as you wish.

Please note that I am telling the amount in terms of Indian Rupees.

Anonymous said...

I go through your blog regularly and in one of your previous post I found that you have decided to pay your driver Rs 900 -Rs 1200 per day which means that the driver will be getting Rs.30,000 per month on and average. Do you know that in India many highly educated people are having a salary of around Rs.5000 to Rs.7000 per month. Here, taxi drivers who work for around 10 hours usually get Rs150 -Rs 200 per day. That means if you pay your driver Rs5000 - Rs6000 per month then it will be sufficient for them and if you pay them around Rs.6500 - Rs7000 per month they can work for more than 12 hours.
Before making a deal please do consider in terms of Indian currency and not in terms of dollars.

Avrajyoti Mitra said...

Erm... The spirit giude who decided to visit you, was not a hawk, I suupose, rather, it was a brown fishtail kite. This species is very common in Kolkata, and I daresay, you will have quite a few visits from your spirit guide if you keep an eye open for them in the morning.

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