Postcards from Rishikesh, India – 2007

Ten years ago, in 2007, I went for a Dhyan Yatra in India with Isha Yoga. It was an interesting journey and one to remember. A dedicated article about this experience and trip will ensue sometime in the future.

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The “Amazon Locker” experience

If you are an Amazon.com customer, then you might find the Amazon Locker delivery option very convenient.

In case you want to receive a package when you are out of town for instance, you can deliver it to a nearby locker.

When you receive the package, you will get an email containing the pickup code which you can use to open one of the lockers and get your package!

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Avalon Bellevue Towers: 4 years of time well spent

In this blog post I will be sharing my experience of living in the Avalon Bellevue Towers Community right in downtown Bellevue, Washington for 4 years.

Avalon Bellevue Towers’ slogan is: Time well spent. Let me explain what they mean with that!

The staff and the service

abt-602-During my 4 years living there, the community and its staff lived up to their word.

The concierge staff was always professional and friendly (hello Ken and Stephen). Apart from greeting them when I enter the building, they took care of the package reception and delivery and other mundane issues.

When it comes to maintenance requests, I can say it was top notch. Mr. Attila Madaras, the maintenance supervisor, was always there in person to fix all kinds of problems in the apartments: from replacing busted light bulbs to repairing a broken appliance. I would place a maintenance request online and within the same day (or max the next day) I would get the issue taken care of.

The leasing office staff was also very friendly (hello Cathy, Michael, Rebecca and Terri). I interacted with them often, not just once a year when I was renewing my lease.

As a positive “side-effect” of the staff’s friendliness, they became like a small family to me.

Note: I don’t want to sound all sensual in my experience, I have to say that I did encounter some misunderstandings with the staff during my stay, but when I communicated my concerns politely, I was met with nothing but good and prompt service. Continue reading

“I went to heaven and came back”

Today, I was at the park walking. I ran into a guy trying to recruit people to save the planet from global warming. I stopped and chatted with him.

He was not paying attention to the discussion all the time, for example when chatting he would look behind me and shout to the people that are passing by. Anyway, he told me that once he had a spiritual experience. To make a long story short, he told me he went to heaven, other galaxies and came back here because he wanted to be back.

He started to describe one planet he found, where he said it resembles earth but only much more peaceful and technologically advanced. There are talking trees there, animals talk and everything is harmonious and peaceful. There is no killing on that planet.

Later he told me, that he also witnessed the end of our world here on earth. Everything will be burning, and only the good people will be saved.

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Dear readers, I shared this story with you because it tells us something about the human mind’s imagination and its recalling ability. Remember, not every person that goes to heavens and comes back, or gets to talk to God gets the attention of Oprah Winfrey or the main stream media. While many have profited from claims like that, many others have been labeled as crazy people.

It is ironic how we choose who we want to believe and who we don’t want to believe, right? In my previous post, “Jesus Sells“, I gave an example of how claims of supernatural nature can make you good profit.

We are the sustainers of the world

It is said that we hold the world with our thoughts, the way we experience the world is how we collectively project our thoughts into it.

Everything exists for a reason and for something to be sustained there should be a sustainer, you, me and everyone else.

– How can there be health without illness?
– Doctors without patients?
– Bakers without hungry people?
– Lover without the object of love?
– Shops without shoppers?
– Products without consumers?
– Fashion without audience?
– Singers without listeners?
– Schools without students?
– Children without parents?
– Villains without heroes?
– Heroes without villains?
– Saints without sinners?
– Sinners without saints?

Meeting Amma, Mata Amritanandamayi Devi (2013)

Introduction

On 05/24/2013, Amma (also known as Mata Amritanandamayi Devi) was visiting Bellevue, Washington as part of her north America tour.

It was the first time for me to go and see her. Many of my acquaintances talk about her, be it acquaintances from France, Belgium or those from where I currently live (in the Seattle area).

They say she has lots of energy and that she can help me in my spiritual path. A quote attributed to her is worthwhile mentioning:

Amma’s hugs and kisses should not be considered ordinary. When Amma embraces or kisses someone, it is a process of purification and inner healing. Amma is transmitting a part of Her pure, vital energy into Her children. It also allows them to experience true, unconditional Love. When Amma holds someone it can help to awaken the dormant spiritual energy within them, which will eventually take them to the ultimate goal of Self-realization. — Amma

She hugs people for free, however during her visit, a 3-days retreat (that costs $290) is offered.

During the retreat, spiritual lectures are given, a proprietary meditation technique called “IAM – Integrated Amrita Meditation Technique®” is offered for free among the other things that are part of the retreat.

I mainly went to the retreat in order to learn the IAM meditation technique and also to get to experience this infamous hug and see how it bestows unconditional love.

The rest of the article will describe my experience from my point of view. Please know that I am not bashing or defaming Amma in any way. This blog post is to share my observations and thoughts with others. Continue reading