I am a white male, born during WWII when my father was overseas, serving in the US Navy. I grew up in Southern California, married my girlfriend and moved to Berkeley in 1966. Within a year, I left that marriage and moved to San Francisco, became a hippie, and then joined a non-denominational religious order in 1969. I came into the Light, realized the Self, and became a minister-priest by 1972. In 1974, the founder died and the order began to disintegrate.
I married an order priestess in 1977. We left the order and I returned to college in 1980, getting a Masters degree in Social Work in 1984. We had two sons, but the marriage dissolved in 1988. I had my second awakening, and then got into another relationship. We had a daughter, but that relationship only lasted three years. I was deeply wounded by these separations, but I kept going back for more–slowly learning. Three more marriages later, I’m finally learning to trust. I’m 76 yo now and we’re in our 17th year together.
Retired at age 60, I went to art school and graduated in 2009 with a BA in Fine Art from Portland State University. Through my wife I met Amma, “the Hugging Saint,’ in 2003. She gave me a Sanskrit name when I was at her ashram in India in 2005. I had previously been initiated as a Sufi mureed and received a Persian name in 1987. In 2000, I was initiated as a Wandering Bishop and Master Teacher in the Gnostic Order of Christ (now Order of the Holy Cross). Also, beginning in 2005, I began studying Tibetan Buddhism. and A Course in Miracles.
In 2006, a friend and I started a Course in Miracles study group and met Course teacher Gary Renard. While that group continued to meet online during the pandemic, in 2020 I made a Facebook page named ACIMSEPDX. Last year, two friends from the religious order and I met every morning, through Zoom, to study the Course daily lessons. This year we’re meeting every Saturday afternoon to listen to Dr. Kenneth Wapnick’s Classes on the Text.
My wife and I live in a big old house in SE Portland. It’s more than we need, so we’re going to sell it this year and move to a retirement community in Lacey, Washington.