A Penny


He was in the second year of engineering school, living in Tehran away from his family. The first year passed by quickly, adjusting to living independently while meeting the demands of the highly demanding class requirement.

In his second year, he longed to generate some income; pocket money, knowing it was a financial hardship for his family to support him. Ideally, he was looking for a part-time job that he could do from home, as he didn’t have a car. His academic goal was the priority, and he didn’t want to risk his studies by working. What could he do? He had no prior work experience.

When a relative offered him a writing job for a children’s magazine, he was delighted. It was the perfect job for him. He was a good story teller. For years, he was sharing stories with his four younger brothers. He would create stories from his own imagination. He had a natural ability to create adventure, thrilling events, and suspense; getting his audience hooked. He loved to look at their eager eyes, mesmerized. Like Sharhzad the storyteller, he would stop the story at a highly critical time until the next night. His brothers couldn’t wait for the next night, begging him to finish the story. He loved to nurture their imaginations, taking them to the North Pole in the freezing cold, and other life threatening situations.

He met with the editor in chief, his very first job interview. He was to translate the children’s stories from English to Farsi for ten Tomans per page. The magazine was published weekly and the limit was four to six pages per story. Longer stories could continue from one week to the next.

He started translating, and had permission to make changes in order to make the story easy to read for the Farsi readers; not to translate verbatim. He learned to use his own imagination to add flare and culture to the story. He made them more exciting and engaging. In doing so, he was also adding to the number of pages to create a little more income. He was able to turn a two page story into a five page one. There was a graphic artist who read the story upon completion, and illustrated it.

He will always remember the very first check he got for a hundred Tomans! His heart was beating with joy and excitement. He looked at the brand new cashier’s check. He had never had that much money in his life. He didn’t know what to do with the check and was fearful of losing it, or someone to steal it from him. It was like cash. He had a little pocket in front of his pants. He folded the check a few times and put it in that pocket. While getting on a bus to go home, he put his hand over his pocket, tightly guarding the check. After all, it was the very first time he was making money out of his own work.

Every month, they had a staff meeting at the editor in chief’s home. The editor insisted that everyone be treated with Persian hospitality, so he prepared a large table full of delicacies. In addition, the editor served wine, and Mani loved to have a glass. His family were decent Muslims and did not have alcoholic beverages. That evening at the editor’s home was a special treat for him, living a simple student’s life. He looked forward to going there to discuss the mission of the magazine and to meet all of the writers. The editor usually gave him a ride to the bus station after the meeting.

One time, he went to the meeting as usual, but changed into better clothing to look more professional; different attire from his student T-shirt and jeans. Many issues were discussed and the meeting lasted much longer than usual. He was concerned how late the buses ran, not wanting to miss the last one. The editor gave him a ride to the bus station. Upon leaving the warmth of the car, he felt very cold; the temperature had dropped significantly, and a cold wind was blowing. His clothing was inadequate for the near freezing temperature. He was hoping that the bus would come soon.

He went to the kiosk where a man was sitting with a heater inside. He reached into his pockets. Ah, he had forgotten his wallet when he had changed clothes. He had no money with him. He was shocked. How could he forget to put money in his pocket? He was in a hurry to be on time to the meeting. He searched his pockets and found one coin only. He was a penny short for the bus fare. He paused, feeling embarrassed to ask the clerk. Yet the long distance home in the freezing cold was stronger than his inner feelings.

He politely approached the clerk. The clerk opened the window reluctantly, losing heat.
“Sir, I’m short a penny for a ticket. I was wondering if you might consider giving me a ticket. The next time I come, I will pay double.”

“No. Absolutely not. Go away!” He shut the window and warmed his hands over the heater.

He paused. He saw others the way he was; loving, kind, giving and generous. If he was in place of the clerk, he would have given a ticket, feeling good about helping out. He would have even paid for the ticket out of his own pocket.

He was cold and tired. It was going to be a long, long walk. He pulled his shoulders up, thinking it would feel warmer if he put his hands in his pockets as he was walking. The thoughts were going through his mind with the speed of light. Emotions were overwhelming. He was frustrated and angry with the clerk. Then he was angry with himself, which made him feel colder inside from the negative thoughts.

He had a natural ability to be positive. He shifted his thoughts. He was going to buy a car as soon as he could. He would become financially independent; making a good income and help others. He imagined himself becoming a wealthy person, helping his family and friends in a financial crisis. The inner warmth came to his body, and before he knew it, he was home.





Divine Mother


“If you come to India, I will promise to show you the Divine Mother!” Swami Kalashwar informed his students.

I wonder about the concept of the Divine Mother around the globe. What is the image of the Divine Mother(DM )? Would you comment ? What did swami mean?I asked Zahir in our second conversation about the DM.

” We are not raised with the concept of the DM in the western culture. God the Father, the supreme masculine is a familiar concept, Mother? What is that?  Perhaps Mother Mary is the most familiar. Swami’s mission was to introduce DM to the western world. Many cultures value the masculine representing reason and mind in general. The Divine Feminine representing feelings, emotions and nurturing is devalued. In the U.S. caring professions for the children are devalued, have the lowest pay. If the connection is only to the Divine Masculine, it creates imbalance.  The world knows about the darkness, aggression, ruthlessness, free market, dominating others, and outsmart each other. Assuming limited resources, some leaders rule based on creating fear, having power creating shadow and dark energy. The light is based on betterment for the whole based on Truth, wisdom, harmony and the highest ideals. Divine Feminine reawaken the ideals forgotten by many.”

What was going on in your life at that time?

I had just completed a program, an initiation with The Divine Lineage in September of 2007. I had no conception of the possibility of seeing the DM, not a vision, in physical form. The mantra was given, the seed was planted and by February of 2008 I was ready to go to India. I had never thought about going to India before, no desire, felt there was so much suffering going on in India. I thought this maybe an opportunity of a life time. I thought to myself, “I’ve got to go”.

When did you meet Swami?

I met him in 2006 . I never had a guru before. I was raised in Catholic traditions.  Church was led by men. For many the unconscious notion of God is masculine. Men above women by nature, fighting wars. The equality  of masculine and feminine  was needed and emerging. Mother Mary became ” The Beloved” in 1950, a unique classification. According to the church, Jesus saved the humanity through his crucification.  Humans seem to be attached to form by instinct, formless God is different.

How did you feel about swami when you went to India?

I was skeptic like most people are. I went to India not knowing, it was taking a risk, a chance. Something was pulling me, skeptisim didn’t stop me. The only way to know was to go.

What did swami say about visiting with the DM?

” He said anyone could have a direct relationship with her if willing to prepare and have an open heart.  It is about having faith, an open mind and purification of lower vibration.”

Did he say that you would sense her presence or see her?
” He said the Divine Mother can manifest as a being visible to our physical eyes.”

What did you think of that?

” I was raised in the western culture that psychiatrists are likely to say that is hallucination, yet I was optimistic and trusted swami.
“Back to swami’s promise, how did you feel when you heard his promise?” I asked.
“It was a promise I could not pass! When I first met Swami, I had difficulty trusting this young man to be a guru as if he had to prove himself to me. Meeting him was a major turning point in my life. It changed and transformed my life. As I look back, it was a magical moment to be in front of him . At the time, I experienced doubt, wasn’t sure then. It took me years to trust him as a guru.
“How was your experience in the ashram with Swami?”
He asked me “What are your two biggest blocks?”
“First, heart break from a relationship asking healing for both of us, physical and emotional.” At the time, my partner was suffering from deep physical pain. It was debilitating for her. I asked for her healing.
Second block, lack of confidence. I felt most of my life, I was longing for a mentor. I wonder if it may have been related to my father being absent most of the time from home. My parents were wounded.
In the first interview, when I asked for my partner’s healing. Swami had a direct gaze and nod! And went to the next person.
Before we left, the only time that I was able to kneel at Shirdi baba’s statue and touch his feet, Swami put his hand on my back around the heart area. At the moment, I didn’t know how powerful it was to be touched by Swami.  When leaving, he brushed my head and gave me a bunch of pearls.  When I went to my room, I was full of energy, felt a natural high, a feeling difficult to put into words.. My body was trembling, my head was spinning. I laid down, overwhelmed with energy. I had just arrived to India a few days before and I was at the ashram for about a day or so. I thought to myself, “What did I get myself into?” I laid there all night, wondering if I was coming down with something. I basically passed out, a non-ordinary experience, releasing. I went to bed without dinner, feeling overwhelmed.

A few days later, I got an email from my partner saying “I don’t know what you are doing there. Whatever you are doing it is working!” she had strong pain in her abdominal area, issues with her bladder for quite some time.
Two days later, Swami acted on his promise after having prepared us for six months. It was historical for his two hundred students . Before, Rama Krishna served for thirty years to be able to see the Divine Mother. Now Swami was making it possible for others to connect with  her. Never before, there was an attempt for so many people to visit with the Mother as far as I know.
Swami was preparing us for the Divine experience in many ways. One time, right in front of my eyes, he came to a woman sitting next to me and told her: “I really appreciate your devotion” and asked her to hold both her palms together and manifested beautiful cut gem stones and poured them in her hands. I would not have believed it if I heard the story. Yet it was right in front of my eyes.
One time, he asked would you be afraid if there was a cobra here. I thought to myself, yes, I would be afraid, hoping that he wouldn’t manifest a cobra to test us. His point was for us to be fearless when with him! That level of trust.
“How was the experience of visiting with the Divine Mother?”
“Swami took forty of us to the temple and instructed us as what to say and what to do when meeting her. I was anxious. It happened so quickly. When I looked at people coming out, I could feel the transformation. Swami was at the door of the dark room. He put his hand on my shoulder and I felt being touched by an enlightened being like Christ. I went in; there was no light in the room, saw a silhouette of a woman, large crown, holding a trident. She had neckless around her neck, breathing, illuminating. I was longing to see her face and hear her voice. I didn’t see her face, she was illuminating,  some later on said they saw her face. The whole encounter was about ten seconds.
My ego was active asking myself, “where was the proof that she was the Divine Mother?” I felt disappointed wishing I could have seen her eyes and face. We were advised to keep the experience to ourselves which was challenging for me. I understood, they didn’t want us to mix our personal experience with someone else. We needed to process and integrate over time, It took me over a year to overcome my doubts.
I was assured with the changes. It took time to digest and integrate, difficult to put into words. After the “darshan” visit with the Mother, I walked around in a circle outside to ground myself. Before, it was a fantasy, now it was real. My life had transformed for ever.
Many of Swami’s students including Monika Taylor have written about their experiences.
The bottom line is that we all can experience it if we want, not casually. It takes dedication and devotion.

What would you say to the person who would doubt the experience?

” I can’t prove to anyone, yet what matters is to be able to see the Divine in each other. There is not limit. We tend to settle for status que, as good as it gets. We are all capable of becoming Divine beings. Many believe in materialistic universe and the illusion of   humans being separate form the Source.  Consciousness has been a mystery, now science is showing that this is  a conscious human universe. We are Divine and we all can be awaken.”

The conversation will continue.

To our beloved readers:

Monika Taylor is the successor of Swami and below is the link to her story of her first visit with the Divine Mother. It maybe life altering to read it.


No Flowers Needed



Our apartment in Tehran was filled with extra ordinary joy. My dear friend was getting married and we were getting ready together. My heart was filled with love, seeing joy and happiness in her eyes. I loved, admired and respected her since I met her at Michigan State University in 1970.

My thoughts took me to years ago, when we were both students. She attended the graduate program at University of Michigan. She was there on a fellowship; paid to study. I was deeply touched by her accomplishments, and soon she became a source of inspiration for me. She was beautiful inside and out, and the center of attention of many young men in our community. At times, she would come to MSU to visit, and we became good friends. I was in awe of her endless energy. She was politically active, and had chosen a path of science and standing up for human rights. She was bright, with a loving heart, and could easily be nominated for a beauty pageant.

Years passed, we completed our graduate programs. We returned to Iran to be of service and bring healing; giving back to our community, each in our fields. Naming her accomplishments would easily fill the pages of a book. She was managing projects that would require a team of experts going to far away villages focusing on issues related to her field of epidemiology. I loved the fact that her research was not limited to the physical environment. She expanded the concept of epidemic to all aspects of humanity, specifically focusing on ending violence at home, communities and fostering global peace.

I was thinking to myself, given the cultural traditions of a male dominant orientation to marriage and family, it may be challenging for her to find a partner in life, rather than a husband. A man who is willing to become a partner must feel truly secure within himself. She was by no means a traditional wife. She was a citizen of the world on a path of service and making a difference in humanity.

We were teaching at the university and were in close contact. When she shared about meeting a young man, potentially “the one”, I was filled with joy and excitement. She and her whole family were at our wedding in Michigan, and I wished to be close to her on her special day. Soon we met the tall, young, handsome medical doctor who seemed to be on the same path with high energy.

On the wedding day, we were together all day. We went to the beauty salon together. I wished I had gotten her an appointment for a full body massage. Looking back, we were both so excited, with so much to do, working off of an adrenaline rush.

In our apartment, she looked like an angel in her white gown. I kept taking photos for myself of her getting ready, trying to capture the joyful moments. When they were taking the formal photos, it was as if my sister was getting married. My love for her was deep.

The ride to her parents home for the civil ceremony will always be in my memory bank. Her brother, bless his soul,  was driving, and I was in the passenger seat. The bride and groom looked so happy. As is customary in Iran, her brother blew the horn as we slowly drove the busy streets of Tehran. All the cars around us responded by blowing their horns, joining in the celebration. The silence in the car was joyful.

They were gracious to invite my family and my husband’s family to the reception. We were looking forward to a memorable night with our families. The decorations for the civil ceremony were unique, traditional, and beautiful with a touch of humanity. They were going to release two white doves after the ceremony. I thought to myself she has devoted her life to freedom for all, what a meaningful symbol.

It was one of the most memorable weddings in many life. My husband was concerned about his parents being late and missing the fun. There were no cell phones then. He kept looking for a phone to contact his parents. He finally found a phone in the  room where they had the civil ceremony in the afternoon, now empty, and quiet long after the ceremony. I was too busy enjoying the festivities.

A couple of weeks later, my friend called me laughing,  a belly laughter of a child who couldn’t stop. It was contagious, so I started to laugh also, without knowing what I was laughing about. What is it? I asked.

Then she shared that because so many of their family and friends were outside of Iran and wanted to hear the recording of the ceremony, they had an audio recorder in the room. They had forgotten to turn the recorder off after the ceremony. When my husband had called his parents from the room, his conversation was recorded:

“Salam mother, where are you? We have been expecting you for a while now; you are missing all the fun.”

“We are on our way. We have to stop by the flower shop to buy flowers. You know your father doesn’t drive, so it will take time to come by taxi.”

“Forget the flowers, just come! Their home is full of flowers. I don’t think there is any need or room for more flowers.”

“Oh no, we can’t come empty handed, without flowers.”

“Trust me; by the time you go to the florist and drive for a couple of hours through the busy streets of Tehran on a Friday night, the wedding reception will be over.”

“We can’t come empty handed!”

The Persian traditions between two generations was in process. “I promise you, no one will even notice. Trust me; so many other guests came without flowers! including Mr. & Mrs. Bahrami and some other couples that I don’t know their names.”

“Okay, okay. We are coming now, but you will be responsible if anybody noticed it.”

It reminded me of one of the Candid Camera episodes. My beloved was unaware of the recording, eager to have his parents come sooner enjoying the celebration, commented on a fact that he didn’t necessarily want anyone to know.  He assumed he had privacy, wanted to convince his parents to come and free them from the stress of getting flowers. Today, after more than forty years, we still laugh in a time and era in which laughter has become much harder.

This story is dedicated to their beloved daughter, a humanitarian angel, on her engagement.




—- In German Translated By Ulrike Bocker —-

Unsere Wohnung in Teheran war mit außergewöhnlicher Freude erfüllt. Meine liebe Freundin wollte heiraten und wir wollten alles zusammen vorbereiten. Mein Herz war voller Liebe, in ihren Augen Freude und Glück zu sehen. Ich liebte, bewunderte und respektierte sie, seit ich ihr an der Michigan State University im Jahr 1970 begegnete.
Meine Gedanken trugen mich zu der Zeit, als wir beide Studentinnen waren. Sie besuchte den Abschluss-Kurs an der Universität von Michigan, um zu graduieren. Sie hatte ein Stipendium und ihr Studium wurde bezahlt. Ich war sehr beeindruckt von ihren Leistungen, und sie wurde bald eine Quelle der Inspiration für mich. Sie war schön, innerlich wie auch äußerlich und erregte die Aufmerksamkeit vieler junger Männer in unserer Gemeinde. Manchmal kam sie an MSU zu Besuch und wir sind gute Freunde geworden. Ich war überwältigt von ihrer unendlichen Energie. Sie war politisch aktiv und hatte den Weg der Wissenschaft und des Einhaltens von Menschenrechten gewählt. Sie strahlte, hatte ein liebevolles Herz und hätte für einen Schönheitswettbewerb nominiert werden können.
Die Jahre vergingen und wir hatten unser Studium abgeschlossen. Wir kehrten zurück in den Iran, um dort unseren Dienst zu leisten und Heilung zu bringen; wir wollten unserer Gemeinschaft etwas zurück geben, jeder auf seine Art und Weise. All ihre Leistungen zu nennen, würden die Seiten eines Buches füllen. Sie leitete Projekte, bei denen ein Team von Experten in weit entlegene Dörfer geschickt wurden, mit dem Schwerpunkt auf Fragen, die in Zusammenhang mit ihrem Fachgebiet der Epidemiologie standen. Ich liebte die Tatsache, dass ihre Forschung nicht auf die physische Umgebung beschränkt war. Sie erweitert das Konzept der Epidemie zu allen Aspekten der Menschheit, insbesondere mit Schwerpunkt auf Beendigung der häuslichen Gewalt, Gemeinschaften und Förderung des globalen Friedens.
Ich dachte mir, es kann angesichts der kulturellen Traditionen einer männlichen dominanten Ausrichtung zu Ehe und Familie für ihre Suche nach einem Partner im Leben, anstatt einem Ehemann schwierig sein. Ein Mann, der bereit ist, ein Partner zu sein, muss sich innerlich wirklich sicher fühlen. Sie war keine traditionelle Frau. Sie war ein Weltbürger auf dem Wege, einen Unterschied in der Menschheit zu machen.
Wir unterrichteten an der Universität und waren in engem Kontakt. Als sie über einen jungen “potenziellen“ Mann sprach und ihn “den Einen” nannte, war ich voller Freude und war aufgeregt. Sie und ihre ganze Familie waren bei unserer Hochzeit in Michigan, und ich wollte ihr an ihrem besonderen Tag nahe sein. Bald trafen wir den großen, jungen, hübschen Arzt, der mit viel Energie auf dem gleichen Weg zu sein schien.

Am Hochzeitstag waren wir den ganzen Tag zusammen. Wir gingen zusammen zum Schönheitssalon. Ich wünschte, ich hätte für sie einen Termin für eine Ganzkörpermassage bekommen. Rückblickend waren wir beide so aufgeregt, hatten so viel zu erledigen und waren Adrenalin gesteuert.

In unserer Wohnung sah sie in ihrem weißen Kleid wie ein Engel aus. Ich hatte ständig für mich selbst fotografiert, während sie fertig gemacht wurde, und ich versuchte, die freudigen Momente festzuhalten. Als dann die formellen Fotos aufgenommen wurden, war es so, als würde meine Schwester heiraten. Meine Liebe zu ihr war tief.

Die Fahrt zu ihren Eltern nach Hause für die standesamtliche Zeremonie wird immer in meiner Erinnerung bleiben. Ihr Bruder, Gott segne seine Seele, fuhr, und ich war auf dem Beifahrersitz. Die Braut und der Bräutigam sahen so glücklich aus. Wie es im Iran üblich war, betätigte ihr Bruder die Hupe, als wir langsam die belebten Straßen von Teheran entlang fuhren. Alle Autos um uns herum reagierten, indem sie ebenfalls hupten und sich so der Feier anschlossen. Im Wagen herrschte eine fröhliche Ruhe.

Sie waren so nett, meine Familie und die Familie meines Mannes zum Hochzeitsempfang einzuladen. Wir freuten uns auf eine unvergessliche Nacht mit unseren Familien. Die Dekorationen für die standesamtliche Trauung waren einzigartig, traditionell und schön mit einem Hauch von Persönlichkeit. Sie wollten nach der Zeremonie zwei weiße Tauben fliegen lassen. Ich dachte mir, sie hat ihr Leben der Freiheit für alle gewidmet, was für ein sinnvolles Symbol.

Es war eine der unvergesslichsten Hochzeiten im Leben vieler Leute. Mein Mann war besorgt, seine Eltern könnten zu spät kommen und den Spaß verpassen. Es gab zu der Zeit noch keine Handys. Er suchte nach einem Telefon, um seine Eltern zu kontaktieren. Er fand endlich ein Telefon in dem Raum, wo die Trauung am Nachmittag stattgefunden hatte, der jetzt leer und ruhig war. Ich war zu beschäftigt, die Feierlichkeiten zu genießen.

Ein paar Wochen später rief mich meine Freundin lachend an, mit einem Lachen eines Kindes, das nicht aufhören konnte. Es war ansteckend, also begann ich auch zu lachen, ohne zu wissen, worüber ich lachte. „Was ist los“, fragte ich.

Dann erzählte sie mir, weil sich so viele ihrer Familienmitglieder und Freunde während ihrer Hochzeit außerhalb des Irans aufgehalten hatten und sie auch die Aufnahme der Zeremonie hören wollten, war ein Aufnahmegerät im Raum. Sie hatten vergessen, den Rekorder nach der Zeremonie abzuschalten. Als mein Mann seine Eltern aus dem Zimmer angerufen hatte, wurde sein Gespräch mit aufgezeichnet:

“Salam Mutter, wo bist du? Wir haben dich schon eine Weile erwartet. Du vermisst den ganzen Spaß. ”

“Wir sind auf dem Weg. Wir müssen am Blumenladen anhalten, um Blumen zu kaufen. Sie wussten, dass Ihr Vater nicht selber fährt, also wird es eine Zeit dauern, mit dem Taxi zu kommen. ”

“Vergiss die Blumen, komm einfach! Ihr Haus ist voller Blumen. Ich glaube nicht, dass es irgendwelche Bedürfnisse oder einen Raum für mehr Blumen gibt. ”

“Oh nein, wir können doch nicht ohne Blumen kommen.”

“Vertraue mir; In der Zeit, wenn du zum Floristen gehst und ihr an einem Freitag Abend für ein paar Stunden durch die belebten Straßen von Teheran fahrt, wird die Hochzeitsfeier vorbei sein. ”

“Wir können nicht ohne kommen!”

Die persischen Traditionen zwischen zwei Generationen trafen aufeinander. “Ich verspreche dir, niemand wird es merken. Vertraue mir; So viele andere Gäste kamen ohne Blumen! Einschließlich Mr. & Mrs. Bahrami und einige andere Paare, deren Namen ich nicht nenne. ”

“Okay okay. Wir kommen jetzt, aber du wirst verantwortlich sein, wenn es jemand bemerken sollte. ”

Es erinnerte mich an eine der Candid Camera Episoden. Meine Liebster war sich nicht bewusst, dass das Gespräch aufgezeichnet wurde, als er seine Eltern dazu bringen wollte, früher zu kommen, um nichts zu verpassen. Es sollte natürlich niemand von dem Gespräch erfahren. Er nahm an, er habe Privatsphäre, wollte seine Eltern davon überzeugen, zu kommen und sie von dem Stress erlösen, Blumen zu besorgen. Heute, nach mehr als vierzig Jahren lachen wir immer noch darüber – in einer Zeit, in der leider nicht mehr so herzlich gelacht wird

Diese Geschichte ist ihrer geliebten Tochter gewidmet, einem humanitären Engel, für ihr Engagement.