I've wanted to write to you for so long, but was waiting until I had resolved everything I wanted to say and found a way to express it all perfectly. That day, however, is too long coming. Let me begin instead by writing the one thing that I never thought I would have the opportunity to say again:
Thank you, thank you, Gurumayi.
Thank you for countless hours spent in the deep, vast ruby mine of meditation.
Thank you for the experience of losing myself in meditation, and of finding myself again when I returned to 'reality'.
Thank you for the gift of contemplation that has shone healing light and understanding on so many obscured, forgotten corners of my soul.
Thank you for the broad, ever-changing river of chanting—now flowing slowly, almost indolently, now rushing forward in swift, powerful rapids, now plunging headlong over a cataract to resolve itself in a deep pool of stillness again.
Thank you for gathering a sangham of exceptional seekers to you, among whom have been the most generous, magnanimous, pure-hearted people I've ever had the privilege to know and love.
Thank you for giving us your beauty and your youth. These things should not matter on the path, and figure nowhere in the qualities of a true Guru, but were nonetheless treasures that we loved to turn over and over in our hands, like a mala made of the rarest flower buds.
Thank you for your voice, your gorgeous deep-throated silken voice that could caress us so softly even as it wounded, like dark velvet drawn across a bruise.
Thank you for the deep black pools of your eyes; how many times did each of us rise from darshan having been transfixed by one of your fathomless glances, certain that our life had meaning and purpose in your service?
Thank you for the mantra, that mysterious talisman that accompanied us wherever we might go, protecting, nurturing fostering our identification with you and with the Self.
Thank you for faithfully transmitting Baba's teaching that we See God in One Another—which alone gives me the courage to say:
Thank you for having the strength to leave.
Because, while all of the above experiences were real and true, your absence has exposed the shadow side of this yoga that we loved and willed into existence together:
The mendacity of SYDA trustees who cared more about currying your favor while you were still in the chair than giving you honest advice about how to best handle a growing multi-national spiritual enterprise, and so contributed to its downfall.
The fear and greed of these same trustees who now think only of stringing us remaining seekers along with hollow spiritual exercises that do little more than punctuate their constant appeals for more money.
The betrayal of so many, many of your most faithful devotees who gave years of their life in selfless service without a penny put into Social Security, and now are left without even the consolation of believing that you cared, that it mattered, that it wasn't all in support of a corrupt system that ensnared even you.
Even you. Oh, Gurumayi. You were so young and so ill-served by those you trusted most. This is enough to allow me to forgive you. You never had a chance to be anything other than what you became, did you? How could you even know what you had become until it was much too late?
And then what could you do but leave, give it up, throw off the saffron and stop playing the goose that laid the golden egg, over and over again.
But you're not really free, are you? They still have you playing the part and singing along whenever they call the tune. Only now it is for a much smaller sangham, comprised solely of those who love you too desperately to let go, and those whose who have the luxury of believing that their robust bank balances are reward for the good karma of many past lives spent in squalor.
Oh, Gurumayi, I loved you once and truly and for the sake of that love I ask one thing. Leave for good. Shut it all down. Give yourself the deep satisfaction at last of telling the trustees to go to hell. Dare them to reveal whatever it is they threaten you with; their very complicity makes their threats impotent.
Give yourself and your dearest, truest, closest followers the experience of total truth; release those who have sworn their lives to you. Tell them what you have known for years now; you no longer want their lives, you want your own.
Have the grace---the Grace!-- to let your followers go. Give us the freedom you would have for yourself. Realize that nothing you can say will ever take away what we all experienced together, not even an admission of your own culpability in the travesty that Siddha Yoga has become. We can heal and forgive; then live together as true seekers, or as separate expressions of that divine Self. As hard as the way forward may seem, it is preferable to the perpetual purgatory that we are all suffering now.
Take up the grace and the courage we all know you possess and lead us one last time, our Dear One.