When I was 20 years old, I rented my own apartment for the first time.
I had shared space with housemates but had never had a place to myself. I took over a beautiful tiny apartment when a friend moved out. My days had been busy, and one afternoon when I found myself with nowhere I needed to go and nothing I needed to do, I suddenly realized that it had been quite a long time since I’d enjoyed sitting and reading a good book — one of my favorite activities, forgotten in the busyness of life.
Although I knew I had no books of the reading-for-enjoyment variety, I walked through the apartment and looked around. The place was so small that this was pretty much an instantaneous process. Also, having moved there so recently and being so happy to have my very own little domain, I had placed everything with care and knew where each thing was. So I was very surprised to see a paperback book, one I’d never seen anywhere before, on a shelf in plain sight. It was the Autobiography of a Yogi.
I’m 72 now and have practiced Kriya for nearly 45 years. The little miracle of finding my guru’s book that day is a marker in my memory showing that my real life began in that quiet, unexpected moment, so long ago that I had no idea how much I would rely on and rejoice in the divine gift I had received, through the pageant and the challenge of the years. I have met many who, like me, are lifelong members of SRF, and also many who were guided to other paths but consider reading the Autobiography to have been the beginning of their spiritual lives.
I should say, just to complete the story, that the person who lived in the apartment before me had never seen or heard of the book. – J. Lalah S.