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Eckankar: Listening to the Inner Voice

by Robert Claycomb


Accepting divine guidance is one of the principles of ECKANKAR, the Path of Spiritual Freedom. It entails learning to hear the true inner voice and rely on this counsel. It can come through a hunch or an intuition, a meaningful coincidence, a visual sign that catches the awareness like a sparkle of light, or random words from a passing stranger. The challenge is learning to pay attention.

I was working on the south side of Boston and was sent out for some special training to a different facility in another part of town.

I made plans to have my wife to pick me up near the entrance to a hospital where I used to work, a place more convenient and easily accessible by car.

I left at 5pm on a summer afternoon and walked toward the designated spot to meet at 5:30. I sat on a bench and waited. After 15 minutes she hadn’t arrived. OK, there might be traffic. I waited another 20 minutes, tried a phone call and couldn’t get though. After another half hour and two more attempted calls, I began to wonder and then worry. It wasn’t long before some anxiety crept in, then frustration, and finally exasperation. I didn’t know what to do, wait or head for home.

Anxious and impatient now, I was leaning toward taking public transportation. Something inside said wait…just a little longer. I closed my eyes and sang the word HU silently. HU is an ancient name for God that I often use as a spiritual exercise to relax and focus. There was a soft breeze blowing, the sound of passing cars, the nearby train arriving. Occasionally automated doors to the building would open and shut as people entered or left. Behind the wind there was a high sweet tone like a penny whistle… Someone said my name.

I opened my eyes to see a friend, Emerson, from Barbados. Twelve years earlier I worked on the hospital crew with him and several others from the Caribbean. He brought me up to date on each of them. Then he told me about Arthur, our supervisor. Arthur, he said, was ill and in hospice care. I had lived with Arthur’s family for a time and he gave me a job when I needed one. My distress dissolved. I understood why this happened, why I was here.

There had been a simple miscommunication over location with my wife. I made it home and, the following morning, called Arthur’s secretary. She was grateful to hear a friend’s sympathetic voice. Arthur’s health turned critical and he passed away less than a week later, but because of the “mishap,” I was able to make vital and heartfelt connections with Arthur and his family. It became an uplifting experience.

In the ECKANKAR teachings we learn that even in trying circumstances, a gift is given. The test is how to unwrap it. You have to be patient and listen to the inner voice. Then you know what to do.

Robert Claycomb is a long-time member of Eckankar, the Path of Spiritual Freedom. You are welcome to join us at our upcoming Eckankar Regional Seminar: Listening to the Inner Voice, February 1-3, 2019 at the Sheraton Monarch Place in Springfield. www.eckinmass..org


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