I became aware of Ram Dass in the early 1970s through Be Here Now. An avid member of Dick Alpert’s explorers club, I had the opportunity to see Ram Dass talk in NY and Philadelphia and also had some friends at that time who studied with Ram Dass, so I was shown certain meditations and practices that Ram Dass was teaching at that time. I did have the opportunity to sit with Ram Dass for a personal interview and that was major for me.

By the end of the 1970s I had committed myself fully to spiritual practice and was living on an ashram convinced that enlightenment was imminent. That didn’t work out so well. One day I woke up realizing I owned no shoes, so I returned to NY to pursue my livelihood. Over the next twenty years I did Gurdjeiff work, practiced Sufism, and then Zen Buddhism. I had some remarkable teachers and met many fine people, but in the end I stopped practice and focused on business development and family life. My day-to-day life became my spiritual practice.

And then to my surprise along came Ram Dass, with Baba in tow, or should I say Baba with Ram Dass in tow. Not sure. At my first heart-to-heart interview, Ram Dass asked me what my sadhana was, and I told him it was paying attention moment to moment. He then gave me “I am Loving Awareness.” After another heart-to-heart interview, I realized I never left, only went away for a while. Happy to be home, which is right here, right now—always has been Loving Awareness. Namaste.

Excerpt from Remarkable Encounters with Ram Dass Enhanced Ebook – now available on iBooks, Kindle and Nook.