Umpqua National Forest, Oregon, USA-Pacific Standard Time Zone
~~* Pilgrimage to the Golden City-Page 8 *~~
Onward I pressed. The view was majestic, revealing the vast
steep slopes of the region. In one glance one could view a panorama of the
seasons. Thousands of feet below were the green verdant jungles pierced through
the middle by the raging torrents of a river that
showed pure white from my vantage point. With but a slight glance up it was as
though a line had been drawn between the jungle and the next strata of plant
life that showed brilliantly bright with the colors of autumn. A long band of
red, orange and yellow raced across the sides of the immense open slopes.
The brown-gray barren ridges and slopes were next in
succession up the mountainsides. It was in that level that I walked, following
the ancient path that wounded it's way around and through the mountains.
As the days went by I would pass many a Buddhist stupa
(piles of rocks placed strategically on the trail by passers-by as they
meandered on in their pilgrimages). Above this climbed the great Himalayan
Mountains. It is hard to express the true height of these peaks. Pure white and
very rugged jagged ridges and peaks pierced the sky several thousand feet above
my worn path, which was already at least 14,000 feet in altitude.
In a glance up or down were thousands of feet of terrain
spanning many ecosystems. The days that I walked were in the fall of the year
and the last vestiges of the monsoon season often left fantastic displays of
color in the sky. Misty clouds would erupt from the jungle regions below and
billow up the steep canyons to emerge in the higher regions, forming clouds of
rainbow colors during sunset.
It was in an area such as this that I stopped to meditate and
practice my spiritual disciplines. Once again I alienated myself from all but
that inner spiritual reality and spheres of mystical initiation through the
trance like states. After some time I once again broke my meditation and as
usual I was gripped by the sensation that so many on the path call "unstressing".
Much of the arcane literature describes what I'm talking about as the death
to self or the unraveling of self-identity, which was so important a
part of mystical life, as well as painful.
While entranced I would be virtually oblivious of such
things, but when I would once again come to myself I would be gripped by a
gnawing awareness of great want in my life and heart. In one moment there was
the surge of power and "bliss" of the altered states of mystical
initiation. In the next there was the gripping stark reality of the effects that
this metamorphosis was affecting in my soul. What was the truth of all of
this? By what standard should I judge my experience? After exerting all the
substance of consciousness and soul, why does the resultant effects read out
like the harsh dualism of life and death? How can nirvana and sangsara be one
and the same?
~~*I Must Have the Truth!*~~
In anguish of heart I began to cry out to God, to Buddha, to
Jesus, to who ever would hear me! With much weeping and desperate brokenness of
heart I wailed for a length of time. Tears and soul-cry poured out of me. "I
must have the truth!" Sobbing and supplication with trembling went from deep
to deep. Truly it was a cry from the utmost core of my inner man. It welled
up from within like a spring with my groaning going forth, expressing what words
could not. I travailed and poured out my soul like water - with great
lamentation, as though I mourned over the death of a loved one.
I knew in some unknown intuitive manner that in spite of all the
"signs" that I was succeeding, I was in fact failing utterly. At the
height of achievement, the pangs of emptiness that had haunted me all my
life rose up from some hidden prison of my heart. I knew I was in great need.
My efforts to prevail over ignorance, darkness and pain were merely a disguise
that hid the reality of my own want.
I lay in a pool of tears for a short time, seeking to regain
my composure. The intensity of emotion began to give way to spiritual
Like ice in a spring thaw, my ignorance began to melt and
give way to light. Knowledge to turn from darkness to light was bestowed on me.
As I turned toward spiritual light, the heavy shroud of darkness that had
engulfed my soul began giving way. A spiritual door had opened
before me. As I turned and entered, the LIGHT of LIFE flooded my inner being. A
hideous weight and great shadow fell off me. Peace and comfort washed over me.
Looking up in the great distance, high above me stood a
figure. As the sun appears through the clouds on an overcast day - so this
brilliant form appeared to me. I had no doubt that this was Jesus (Yeshua), the Messiah (Mashiach).
Inexpressible relief came over me. Can you imagine an
individual walking through a desert many days in the heat of the sun and many
nights without water? Then to have someone appear, when all hope was gone, to
give you a full drink of fresh sweet water to quench your thirst? So was my
heart refreshed when I turned to Yeshua. I knew that Yeshua Messiah wanted me to
follow Him. I didn't know what that meant practically, but like a man who
finds great treasure and guards it, I was unwilling to ever go away for all
eternity from Him.
Other things came to my awareness. I knew that the experience
of the blue light that I was following was a deception and a false light
that was actually darkness.
Consider being a creature of the night. Imagine if you were
taken into a room where there was an ultraviolet black light and there were
posters on the walls with ornate and beautiful designs and symbols glowing
because of the black light. These would appear as brilliant "lights" in
contrast to the surrounding darkness. Then consider someone else bringing you to a door
and opening it so you could see the sun for the first time.
The contrast between these two lights was that profound to
me. Every idea or experience of "peace" that I had heretofore known,
was now revealed as the stillness of death rather than the true peace of
~~*A New Life*~~
I said, "Master, Teacher - I will do all that you wish. I
surrender my life to you. If it's your will for me to remain here in a cave
for the rest of my days I will do it. Only let me be your disciple." From the
very onset I knew that my relationship with Him was directly related to
obedience to Him. To obey and surrender was also to abide in His presence.
I knew that what was happening to me had nothing to do at all with any of my
effort, but rather with an act of Divine kindness on His part. He had heard my pleading cry
and showed me the way to go. He heard me out of His holy mountain.
Radical internal changes were taking place. Somewhat gaining my composure I looked about me. The wisps of clouds from the valley below swirled up the steep slopes. The sun splashed across the vast scene and a rainbow appeared. It was large and beautiful. My life was never to be the same and I knew it. It was a new world! A new life. An assurance unlike any I had ever known affirmed from within that I was on the true path and that he would lead me.
I walked toward Sagartmatta (Mount Everest). In the
high reaches of the Everest area, a small inn and a Buddhist monastery was
situated, named Thangboche. Upon my arrival it became very clear to me that I
was to follow Yeshua alone. I was to depart from synthesizing philosophies and
religions and bind myself to Yeshua. Clearly He told me to depart from those
I waited out a snowstorm and headed toward Katmandu. Along
the way about three days' trek, I came across a small "airport" on
the slopes of the mountains. On each end of this dubious plateau airstrip were
crumpled up pieces of debris that were once small planes. Fortunately a flight
was available and from the vantage point of sitting in that plane what took many
weeks of difficult walking now was in my vision. At a glance and a few moments I
had a view of the mountains unlike any on the trek. I could hardly believe I had
walked all that way. Indeed, my path had led me up and over and into many of the
valleys, off the beaten path.
Lukla Airstrip not too far from Everest
~~*A Familiar Face*~~
Upon my arrival at the Katmandu Airport, Messiah said: "Go to the post office". It was mid-day and I really had no earthly reason to go there. I entered the building and stood about for a short moment. Suddenly there appeared a familiar face in the midst of quite a crowd. The missionary I had met on the bus to Bhadgoan stood in the midst of the people.
Quickly I reached him and exclaimed with joy my experience and discovery and how Messiah had led me to Himself. I wish I could remember the man's name. He was an Aussie.
He was astounded as I related my tale. A hearty invitation by
him brought me to his dwelling. It was quaint and more sized to the short
Nepalese folk. He showed me a little stationery store that he had in Bhadgoan as
his occupation. We ate and prayed and I was refreshed. He instructed me in basic
matters in regards to this new path of life. With much prayer it seemed good to
the both of us that I return to the United States.
The next few years of my life were devoted to the study of
the Law and all of the books in the Old and New Testaments. The Covenants became a part of my
every day life. The entire experience was a profound process of cleansing, reorientation and finding answers. Many hours and days were spent, completely engrossed in the
revelation of God through his Word. Mighty clouds of confusion and obscurity
began to give way to the sunshine of His truth.
Chains of darkness that I was only subconsciously aware of
broke under the strength of the things written. How great was the delusion that
had captured my soul! Reincarnation, karma, astrology and the great blasphemous
concept that man is inherently God himself have been completely washed from me.
I found the entire accumulation of all that knowledge and the experiences that
backed them up to be a part of a vast deception calculated to capture and
hold in bonds of darkness, every soul that does not love the truth. We live in the midst of a great spiritual war.
Most of the time the experience of opening The Holy Book
is deeply spiritual. The words and ideas lift as fire from the pages to take up
their abode in my heart. There they now sit, glowing and churning, lightning my
path on the way to the Golden City. The transformation of my life has been one
of great joy. To be sure, there is still much tribulation in the world. But any time I can, I enter a secret place that I have found "IN" Messiah. There, in
holy fellowship with Him, my heart drinks of life! It is true Life,
free and overflowing.
I'd like to reiterate that I know that much of this information is alien to many. More and more the wave of spirituality and the language of new age doctrine is becoming the vocabulary of our society. Now, after many years, I can see that there is a Golden City in my future. It is not part of the New Age that so many are hoping to usher in. This city and its kingdom have Yeshua Messiah, the Son of David, upon its throne. In Him the ravages of spiritual darkness cannot reach me. I am safe as He leads me on, as the Good Shepherd, into my relationship to YAHVAH, my Father.
How can I begin to express the awesome transformation that has taken place in my life? What does that transformation mean to you if you find yourself walking where I have walked, or if you are presently dissatisfied with your current spiritual state? I have taken some time to give a short account of my present affairs and understanding in an Epilogue on the next page. Please feel free to contact me.
Shalom in Yeshua haMashiach.
Stanley John Petrowski firstname.lastname@example.org
34620 Tiller Trail Hwy.
Tiller, Oregon 97484