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My Spiritual Experiences, Past Lives, and Influences from Mother India:

Joan Elizabeth is a writer that explores mental illness/health/healing in conjunction with spirituality and Holistic living and practices.

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Mahavatar Babaji Mantra

Ganesha:

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Krishna Das: Ecstatic music

Introduction:

The following Hub was written over a series of months. I became heightened in awareness of communication from multiple Ascended Masters from India in 2019. The biggest among them were Mahavatar Babaji, Swami Satchidananda, Mohandas Gandhi, Paramahansa Yogananda, and OSHO. Since college (1989-1994) I have become more and more cognizant of deities of India. I have gone back into the vignettes I wrote during the summer and fall of 2019 and edited them to draw them more closely together.

Vignette 1: My Indian Influences


I first came into an awareness of an Indian deity, Ganesha, when I did my student teaching in 1993-94 while I attended the University of Florida. I had an Indian student in one of my art classes. She was drawing the most fantastic, detailed rendering of the elephant-headed deity. The image sticks with me almost 30 years later because the student did not like me and she did not want me observing her drawing the god or asking her any questions about him.

Baptized as an infant, I came from a Lutheran Christian background so I knew nothing about other cultures and their belief systems.

Eventually, at the age of 27, I would actually move halfway around the world to Hong Kong to do missionary work and to teach art and Bible at the International Christian School. During that period of my soul journey, I was charismatic. I practiced and believed in the Gifts of the Holy Spirit as designated in the Book of Acts in the Protestant Scriptures of the New Testament. That pronounced mystical experience came to a drastic close when a chronic mental "illness" brought me to my knees for the second time since I was 21 years of age.

I have changed many times over since those days. You might call me a spiritual seeker and scholar.

I was diagnosed through Western medicine with Bipolar Disorder 1 in 1992. I have experienced several psychotic episodes (a.k.a. Out-of-Body experiences) which forced me out of my faith of origin and its rigid doctrines and dogmas. I now know that I am not one dimensional (3D) in nature but that I am a multidimensional being. This would take years to comprehend.

23 years later, I became a member of Unity Renaissance in Chesapeake, Virginia. This suited me well for a few years as I am Syncretic. I blend belief systems. Unity defines itself as progressive, metaphysical Christianity. Jesus of Nazareth is its Wayshower and teacher. It accepts all names for God and all paths to God.

Mother India has been calling to me for almost two decades now. This past couple of weeks [summer 2019], I have been heavily connecting to my Indian past lives, Gurus, Ascended Masters and Deities rather boldly.

I have casually studied Tantra for almost 18 years here or there. At some point, Swami Satchidananda, who founded Yogaville an ashram of integral yoga, reached out to me and I fell instantly in love with the Sat Guru. He channeled to me via a film I saw. Then OSHO reached out to me via some books he authored and a local Tantric group I explored. I did not know either one was an Ascended Master for me at those particular times. That knowledge would come much later.

I, also, connected to the deity Lakshmi. In fact, she is the identity of my car as per my personalized license plate.

OSHO has taught me some strange and varied lessons over the years. The Diksa died in 1990. I have formed the opinion over the last week, that he has much to teach me about desire and greed in conjunction with communal living. He has taught me much about Tantra as well.

Swami Satchidananda has taught me so much more! He has brought me interfaith knowledge and lots of love! I visited his ashram about 8-10 years ago. I was absolutely enthralled.


Lakshmi:

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Swami Satchidananda:

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OSHO (Rajneesh: born Chandra Mohan Jain, also known as Acharya Rajneesh, Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh)

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Vignette 2:


I did not understand how Consciousness works when I first started encountering my Ascended Masters from India. I will explain that a little later. After I returned home from Hong Kong in 1998, after being on the Christian missionary field for 8 months and teaching art 6-12 grades, as well as 10th grade Bible doctrine and Christ-centered discipleship to students at ICS [International Christian School], I was completely confused and disillusioned.

I entered a 3-year "Dark Night of My Soul." I desperately clung to Jesus Christ, but I went through such inner dishevelment. The whole spiritual, mental, and emotional experience was so far beyond my comprehension!

I thought that my first, sudden-onset manic (psychotic) episode in 1992 was so bizarre and unsettling that I reasoned it was my punishment for my "wild child" life between 1988-92. That is all that made ANY sense! After all, how does a normal, highly educated, high achiever, young woman go from sanity to insanity nearly over night???

Well, it was not overnight. It played out over a period of time unbeknownst to me. The ultimate catalyst for the spiritual and mental schism was the "miracle drug of the 1980s": anti-depressant, Prozac.

The experience was so radical and "crazy" that the only mental and emotional reconciliation I could make was that God was putting me back on track after several years of deliberate and prolific sin.

HOWEVER, in Hong Kong 5 years later, I was praying all day long nearly every day. I was teaching the Protestant Bible. I was spreading the gospels. I was doing God constantly!

Thus...I discovered the "DARK night of my soul".

Nothing made sense day after day until one afternoon online in an international chat room in 2001, I met a man who would change everything for me. He was brilliant, magnetic, and a very "far out" Pagan who was highly psychic. He came from a genetic line of strongly gifted intuitives. I was instantly mesmerized. {Frankly, he entranced my disheveled and lost missionary girl like no other! He was everything that needed "saving".}

He and I would share 3.5 years together as a couple...only from a distance We would get together in person every 4-6 months. We talked on the phone daily for 2-5 hours, though! (Truly. We only missed 1 day in that time period.)

I did NOT "save" him. To the contrary, he began shifting every mental and spiritual paradigm I knew. He was rigorously trained in magick via various magickal orders. And during this same time, I began to rapid cycle in terms of my "illness". I went in and out of the hospital something like 6 times during that period of my life. Each manic episode is a 2-2.5 week period where I am Out-of-Body almost completely. Then there are approximately 6 weeks total where I am partially Out-of-Body. Heavy prescription medications are used to "bring me down". It is a brutal experience for the bodymind and spirit. It takes approximately 3-4 months to recover mentally and emotionally.

Ironically---or not---I was assigned a psychiatrist who was Indian. And apparently, the first time the doctor saw me, I improvised---mid-psychosis---into a dance I would call my "Indian Dance."

This period of my existence was beyond strange and it was, also, quite a blur. But oh my god was it romantic and highly emotional!!!

Long story short: After all was "said and done," I was reborn a new person.

There was so much I learned and experienced during that time. Number one was that I was psychic and I had something called chakras---each of which corresponded to so much of my life and my internal, energetic being.

Two, my doctor and I really got to know one another as well. He helped me with meds and I learned all about India! He loved chatting with me---much, much longer than my designated 15-minute slot---because I was highly intelligent and I loved learning about India..."


The Indian Dance:

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Lotus Shrine: Yogaville, VA

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Vignette 3:


I am no longer sure of a lot of the chronology involved. This incorporates years and years. One day, I felt like I should go to this organization I had been attending regularly. They were showing a film. This film excited me in a way that I cannot quite put into words. It was about an Indian guru that had immigrated to the United States during the 1960s. His name was Swami Satchidananda. He created an ashram called Yogaville. His life's work was integral yoga and the interfaith movement.

I fell in love with him immediately. His countenance was all about love and togetherness. I don't think I had felt so moved since my missionary days. It would take years, but I would finally visit Yogaville and it was terrific! Very Eastern in flavor but terrific!

In the meantime, I went through so many emotional, mental, physical and spiritual developments.

What happens when you have a mental "illness" is that "normal" one-dimensional/3D-oriented people begin putting you aside. They cannot understand you so they invalidate you as a person---in any way that feels normal for them to do. THIS became MY NEW NORMAL.

At one point because I was rapid cycling I thought I was only valid as a person when I was not episodic/psychotic.

Due to drug changes and shift work that threw my circadian rhythms off every day, my psychoses happened often. At one point, I was almost nothing in terms of my validity. It is a ferocious process really. The traumas involved are immense. You no longer fit into any experience that you have known before. It is the ultimate square peg, round hole scenario. You are officially an outcast to the mainline society.

Where do you go? Who do you connect with?

Despite eventually becoming a whole new person, I was way out of my element almost daily at that time. I had to grow into my new experiences and my new world.

It would take years to begin to feel totally sure of myself, again.

About 1.5 years after my charismatic boyfriend and I split up, I had the next big "spiritual" and energetic step occur. I met someone who I had the most powerful experience with.

A man walked in a room and I felt something that was like static cling...only not between two pieces of clothing! It was between me and the man.

The room was packed and yet I could feel him distinctly. For a moment, I was shaken inside. This was very different than anything I had ever known. Then he walked in front of me and I could not take my eyes off of his very long legs. Long story short, we would eventually become very good friends.

Simultaneously, I had been exploring a local center called the Association of Research and Enlightenment (A.R.E.) that was founded around the most famous psychic of the 20th Century, Edgar Cayce.

I was in the A.R.E. bookstore one afternoon and I picked up a book by an author named OSHO. I began reading the title and, again, I fell in love with the writer. I knew very little about this author, but his words drew me in immediately. It was around that same time that I realized there were many writers in the world who thought like me and experienced life much like me. [They became my "friends" that only spoke through print. This was a huge discovery because when one feels like a complete anomaly to society, it is nice to finally know you are really not alone in the world.]

I had grown up in a smallish town in Kansas and I had been rather worldly since then so this realization just meant that I was living or connecting to the wrong groups and places. I would need to explore more!

The tricky part was that I had limited finances to do the exploring. And yet, the day the "static cling" man walked into my life, my world exponentially expanded. Much later, I would learn that we had had a plethora of lifetimes/incarnations together.

Our first giant crisscross, besides our initial very mystical experiences with one another over a period of about a month (Many more than I can cover in the scope of this short writing.) involved OSHO.

He told me of a local OSHO Tantric group and I went to visit it.


Association for Research and Enlightenment (A.R.E) [New and Old]:

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Vignette 4:


I must pause the linear, chronological roll-out of this story. Fast forward many years, I am in a completely different paradigm.

I have spent 18 years developing psychically. As I said in Vignette 1, it all began after the 3.5-year relationship with my ex-boyfriend who was a gifted psychic. I began learning the chakra system and how to employ meditation. I began studying everything esoteric...including the magickal arts. Believe it or not, from my heavy Lutheran indoctrination, I thought Magick was make believe.

My ex was a very studied magician. He belonged to multiple magickal orders to hone his skills. Some trained him like a special ops military person. Yep, it was a very fascinating 3.5 years!

Magic is not the same as magick. The "K" indicates esoteric knowledge. Magic ending in a "C" is simply illusionary manipulations.

I, also, started craniosacral therapy to assist me with my disorder.

All of these experiences led me into the realm of Multidimensionality. What that means is that life as most people in America and the world, perchance, see it is primarily a one-dimensional existence. The dimension is that of the 3D world---the material, physical world.

In fact, despite being called a Christian nation, most people in America are hesitant to see themselves as spiritual beings having a human experience. Christianity comes with many rules. Its dogma and doctrine give lots of mandates on how to believe and experience life. It is OK and necessary to have the Jesus epiphany. And it is OK to have some spiritual meanderings. But all must fall within the doctrine and within the order of the church service.

Absolution, prayer, baptism, and communion are the "biggie" spiritual experiences. Catholics delve into a few extra "biggies" like relationships with saints and angels. Death is important as well. The sacraments are not the same for each sect. Some Protestants do the angels and even the saints; but, for most denomination beliefs even those experiences are highly limited in nature. I explored many of these facets over a 30 year period.

After my initial manic episode, I spent 7 years as a charismatic believer. That means I experienced Gifts of the Holy Spirit. Worship service implemented a sort of trance-like procession where the Spirit would "move" and the gifts would be displayed.

In my last orthodox church, I was considered a "second class citizen" because I did not have the gift of tongues. Rather, I had the gift of love. Totally Biblical but not good enough for my congregant brother and sisters or the minister!

Looking back, I still laugh at the things I subscribed to so I could have a "false sense of safety" while living in a very fundamentalist black and white existence. I needed a "rules way of life" after experiencing a very horrid psychosis at 21 that I erroneously attributed to sin.

Even a lot of people into psychics and such do not believe in Multidimensionality. They believe in the 3D realm and the 5D realm...some believe in the transitional 4D realm. There is kind of a Hooda-Guru, Woo-Woo mindset between the two realms. Multidimensionality is much broader and expansive. It is infinite. Anything is possible. Nothing is impossible.

I have become---over an 18 year period---an adept at exploring the invisible realms. I still learn daily; but, I also am quite studied and scholarly. But until recently, I often did this very naturally and I had very little language for any of it.

Back to my story: 4.5 years into my studies of this very new and foreign world, I learned of the local OSHO group.

I had an inkling of Tantra because of my ex, but truly I knew nothing really. So, very nervously, I took the risk and went to the group. It was led by a medical doctor who practiced naturopath medicine. He was highly uninteresting to me. And it was obvious to me that a number of people in the group were what, I would term, guru worshipers toward him! I found that distasteful with my Christian upbringing and my 1980s' indoctrination regarding the Hare Krishna cult that flooded airports and college campuses during that time. I found it all quite uninteresting.

But then I met a woman who actually belonged to the OSHO commune in Pune, India. Now that was interesting! I attended this small group for 5 weeks...once a week and then years later for another 5 weeks. [No sex was involved in these group sessions.] What I also found interesting were the meditations and activities within the group. And I adored learning about Tantra!

There was a very twisted woman who was involved with the guru/leader and doctor (He had quite a few women devotees and lovers.) that eventually made me want to walk away from the group. That was my first actual OSHO experience.

I would continue to study his writings and other authors' writings regarding Tantra, but I was done with the actual practice with anyone else for that time period. But, I did still hold a fascination for that woman from the commune in India.. That fascination would last for 8 years.


Vignette 5:


As I said, I did not realize I had Ascended Masters from India initially. Everything evolved over time. My Indian psychiatrist gave me a nice foundation for Indian culture that would assist me in growing my understanding of higher principles involving India. At first, I did not believe in past lives whatsoever. I was too Christian-oriented for that! I mean the vast majority of my life was spent wrapped up entirely in Christianity. Not even the 3.5-year relationship with my Pagan ex could easily shake me clear enough to give up the Christian concept of the ultimate "reward" for lack of a better word.

What was that??? Heaven, of course!

But, fate or God or Brahman intervened! You decide what resonates.

Remember, I met the "static-cling man". And within a week of knowing him, I had a very weird happening occur. I was at that time in my life, learning to meditate. I went to A.R.E. because the center has a meditation room on the third floor. It overlooks the majestic scene of the Atlantic Ocean in Virginia Beach, VA. That was my church!!! I had left my last organizational structure called "Church" shortly before I met my Pagan ex. I had to feel God somewhere!

One day---a week after meeting "Mr. Static-Cling"---I was sitting in the meditation room meditating and the cones or the rods (whichever causes such an experience) caused my inner and outer vision to go completely red. It is similar to when you lay in the sun and you suddenly open your eyes. But this experience was super long...like for several minutes. I could see everything in front of me and around me but everything was bright red.

Eventually, the experience subsided. Now, I must tell you, I was just learning to meditate and I often did not pay attention to the details in the book I was studying from. I liked to take short-cuts to get to the "meat "of the experience. I did a lot of things that were not exactly recommended during that period of my development. For instance, the day I met "Mr. Static-Cling", I had meditated and I was not grounded and nor did I ground upon closure. Hmmmm...Well, I did have the static-cling experience right after, but that is very dangerous for your physical bodymind. In fact, "Mr. Static-Cling" who was well-versed in energy and healing work chastised me for it.

The day my eyes went red, I followed my experience of meditating with a trip to the old metaphysical bookstore called the Heritage in Virginia Beach. When I walked inside the building, everything was green. It was near St. Patrick's Day and Spring Equinox. I felt like I had walked into a stadium with bright fluorescent lights. It was crazy wild! [Red and Green are complementary colors.]

I looked across the room I was in and this woman with pitch-black hair was standing near a bag with sunflowers on it. I now know sunflowers are a personal "psychic" symbol for me. I did not know that at the time. I just knew that sunflowers always make me light up because I grew up for many years in Kansas and that is the state flower. I knew in my heart this woman with the black hair was the psychic on duty. I frequented the store often. I knew there was always one psychic on duty downstairs. So, I headed her way.

I asked her for a reading. At that time, I often observed the psychics to figure out how they operated. My Pagan ex had taught me how to read the tarot, but I didn't have a lot of confidence in my abilities at that point.

She agreed to the reading. But, oh my gosh! The first thing she said was that her expertise was in past lives. I thought, "Oh my God! For real? What a waste of my money!" And yet, within moments she spoke "Mr. Static-Cling's" name.

I was intrigued.

I don't remember too many more details of the reading. It was 14 years ago, and I did not know it would have special significance to me this many years out! I do know that she told me my last life ended in 1967 and that another significant life took place in New Orleans---my very special city---special since I was 15 years of age.

Long story short, I met with "Mr. Static-Cling" again. And a "magickal mystery tour" would unfold that has been 14 years of EPIC!


Vignette 6:


So reincarnation became a new fascination for me.

When I began getting to know "Mr. Static-Cling", I learned we had some strong spiritual convergence in terms of our early lives. In fact, he was born into a Lutheran family as well. Through him, I began to explore the concept of a past life.

I cannot share the one major incident between us in the beginning that helped me to know I had had a previous life with this man. But, suffice it to say, I tried a little psychic and energetic trick that my Pagan ex told me about when he and I were dating. It was an act of intention. A sort of telepathic game, if you will. And it worked!

The outcome of the intention was either going to be a hit or a miss---either the trick would create the outcome intended or nothing would occur. The outcome occurred. This gave me a lot of confidence. You have to understand that my Pagan ex taught me all sorts of wild concepts. But it wasn't until I met "Mr. Static-Cling" that I could attempt to use any of these concepts.

I can share that I began to really practice energy and healing work. Chakras were quite fascinating to me. I read everything I could understand about these vortices. Anodea Judith was the big author of the very first piece of literature on the subject. She, of course, is one of the leading Western experts in this matter. But, even some of her stuff was way beyond my comprehension at that point in my development. Chakras are something you have to sort of learn in stages---or at least I had to. Because this energy system is a very old Eastern science. It entails a lot of aspects and details.

The key for me was to start using my understanding of these energy vortices. The first really huge connection for me was with "Mr. Static-Cling". I went to hug him goodbye one afternoon and through intention alone, I sent energy from my heart chakra to his heart chakra. In that very moment, he nearly jumped and made a high pitched squeal. Then he looked at me like, "Oh my God! Who is this girl???" He turned and went to his car without a word. When he left the parking lot, he looked at me very intensely and smiled and then he drove away.

This was just the beginning of him and me....and our eternal companionship.

I will tell you that it would be eight whole years before we would both know what was really happening between us. One lifetime/incarnation, in particular, would unfold piece by piece before us and through us for the entire duration.

You see, past lives are a very deep experience. They have to do with the concept of karma---but educationally rather than retributively; and, the process of healing as a soul.

They are about the realization that all of humanity is truly inseparable and forever linked through the strands of time and space---a sort of man-made construct that is Illusionary in the 3-Dimensional realm. It is the awakening that we are all moving back into alignment and love with the Divine and each other as perfected ONENESS.

Reincarnation is quite real. It is almost every soul's journey. [It is irrelevant as a human whether you believe in it or not.] You can be a Christian your entire life. You can absolutely deny multiple lives exist. That does not change your soul's experience. I will say, however, that souls come in various different age groups and soul groups. I can say that some Christians may be brand new souls that will not experience multiplicity should they intersect with the time frame of the roll out of the Book of Revelation. I cannot speak toward other religions or belief systems like Atheism with as much certainty.

And in my daily life for a period of almost 14 years, reincarnation has been quite palpable and tangible at times---not every moment of every day, but often and with intensity.

Have you ever experienced something so spiritual and real that you felt the impulse to explain this experience in detail to someone you know?

This impulse has driven me to write, and share my stories with anyone who would listen. And for some of my truest friends, I have shared a plethora of these little meaningful vignettes (and their synchronistic pieces of evidence) for well over a decade---and on a daily basis.

After enough of the stories passed my lips...with as many concrete details that I could provide...some of these friends no longer doubt or question my personal experiences whatsoever. One friend, in particular, comes from a very regimented Catholic education and upbringing. Despite her very specific belief system that does not incorporate reincarnation, she is a believer about my personal experiences. She does not transfer or apply that to her life for the most part, but she knows how God interacts with me. She knows because detail after detail of each and every experience has been absolutely undeniable to her.

I do not know whether she will ever allow the concept to be possible for her personally or not; but, with God all things are possible, and I know this, she shares my God...


Third-eye Chakra:

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Vignette 7:


I need to take the snip-its of my life a little off course. The reason I feel like doing this is because life is not linear and stories often are! My life for 18 years has been very multidimensional. I'd like to have that perceived by you, readers, here in my story.

You see, the multidimensional reality incorporates anything and everything really. It is a series of experiences that are somehow linked but to the average human mind, the link is utterly invisible and often improbable or even impossible! And yet, the links occur and they connect.