Report: DHO Mt. Shasta – 2011

Dear Family,

Our pilgrimage to Mt. Shasta was spectacular. Not only did we have the blessing of Pir Shabda’s company, but also the presence and blessings of Murshid Saadi and Murshida Mariam. All told, about 70 of us participated.

Once again our ‘field trips’ took us to places of great import: Shasta Abbey, Mother Mary’s old hotel, and Widow Springs on the Mountain. The snow was still in place on both Panther Meadows and Bunny Flats, so our time on the mountain was limited to drinking the ‘Healing Waters’ from Widow Springs.

Our ‘special guest’ was Jeff Whittier, who spent hours regaling us with stories of Mother Mary, and the ‘White Brotherhood.’ His book is finished, but not yet printed. Jeff brought some ‘final edition’ spiral bound copies for distribution. He told me he would inform us when it is printed, so we can order if we wish to.

The sound of the rushing river became our ‘leit motif’ for the week, and our homework was all water based. It was a time of letting go, and allowing the river to carry away all of our stress, pain, sorrow and troubles.

At least 4 people came to me after camp and said what a healing time it had been for them. Their anxiety and depression had abated, and they felt centered enough to resume their lives – Inshallah! on a new and clearer note.

Kudos to Mary Beth (who held the post of ‘road woman’ and local guide, making sure all was in readiness for us), Jude (who handled registration and finances), and Murad (who acted as our liaison with the camp, and the kitchen)…by the by, Murad’s daughter went into labor just at camp’s start, and he was needed at the birth, so he missed the first few days, but caught up with us at the end, and had time to give me an acupuncture treatment, plus leading a session of Sufi Chi Gong. Yeah!

Although our gathering was very full with practices and events, there was still time for reflection and repose. And what a fabulous place to do it in.

Special thanks to Solomon for helping me decorate the meeting space with his beautiful Bali textiles.

Some highlights: Najat started each morning with a kilvat practice and focus for the day, Rabbi Pam Frydman read some stories and practices from a new paper she is writing, and led us in a Hebrew zikr – Wow! – Jean Pierre shared how he balances his spiritual practice and his work – Fadilla accepted the title of Shafayat & Nur Un Nisa was initiated as an Initiator – early morning Japanese Tea (thanks to Siddiq & Sakina) – Richard Mann’s early morning yoga – Aslan’s evening dances, and choral graces – Sarfraz’s walks of the Masters – our daily healing ritual (with 4 new conductors initiated) – the Europeans who attended – (Natalia {who finally got her visa!}, Simone from Germany & Zubin from Holland) – the mineral baths and sauna – the all pervading river – plus a number of ‘former’ priests from the Holy Order of Mans {one could feel their energy and devotion during the Walk of the Master Jesus} – once again, Noel brought through Hanuman, Mashallah! and we all followed him in the walk – Mansur shared some memories of Shamsher Beorse and his alternative energy projects – Nassruddin enlivened our gathering with fabulous humor, Michael Endlich made a short presentation on amulets, and, onwards and upwards.

Our visit to Shasta Abbey was much anticipated by the monks. They even requested that we sing the Gate Gate melody we did last time we were at Kennett Roshi’s grave site. In addition we recited the Heart Sutra, and lit incense, over her memorial, and sang Allahuddins “Till we meet again Bodhisatva.” We shared our box’d lunches with our hosts, and ate looking upon the most perfect view of Mt Shasta. Wonderful visuals! Fabulous energy!

If you haven’t visited their meditation hall you are missing something sublime. I found myself, moving into meditation with a single breath. Murshid Saadi remarked that it was the most powerful space he has felt since he spent 3 days meditating under the Bodhi Tree.

They have a new Abbess, from England, and although they were amidst a retreat, she took time to greet and welcome us. A strong and loving presence. May she do well.

A number of folks took pictures: Thanks to Ayshia who has already posted hers on the DHO Facebook page, and to Mansur who took a short video at the Abbey. These are wonderful, and bring it all back in spades.

So many folks made this happen. I hope I have acknowledged all of them. We couldn’t have done it without you.

We raised enough money to send almost $2,000.00 to the local “Meals on Wheels” – Shasta area is very economically depressed, and there is not enough money to feed the elderly and stay-at-homes.

In addition, there is a project to help save the Mountain from development and commercial fracking. Please contact Mary Beth if you feel called to donate, at , or +++Mary Beth Granberry – P.O. Box 153 – Mt Shasta, California – 96067.++++I sent my check today for $101.00…

We are still working on next year’s location. More on that soonish.

All blessings and love and many, many thanks

hakim sauluddin
June 30, 2011