When I was in my early thirties, I had been searching for a spiritual path for about 10 years. My journey started with reading about Walt Whitman, who in his lifetime had obtained something called “cosmic consciousness”, which at that time was a dimension I had never heard of. It made a deep impression on me and resonated with some part in me that had always looked for a deeper meaning in our earthly life. Up until then what I had seen of any purpose in life had seemed like a pointless race from birth to death, though not without enjoyment as the seventies was a truly inspiring time to be young. Yet at a deeper level, I could not help but feel that I was living on the surface of life just following the trends of the day.
My first guide into a deeper understanding of life’s mystery was Krishnamurthi. He opened a door that started me off on an exploration into different spiritual paths. After groping and feeling lost on an existential plane, it was consoling to discover realities which confirmed that in essence we were soul beings. Of course at that time the use of drugs, tapping into subconscious layers in oneself, was also an opening. But still there seemed to be something lacking that could explain the dichotomy of having been born into a body destined in the end to become merely an obstacle to realisation on the spiritual plane. It seemed like there was a missing link here: something was needed to make the painstaking earthly journey worthwhile and purposeful.
So that is where I was in my search at the beginning of the eighties when Sri Aurobindo and The Mother came into my life. It appeared to happen by chance – but of course chance never comes into it – that I was in the town library of the city where I was then living to look for a book on Astrology. I had started to explore this subject, in the hope of getting a beter understanding of my 7 year old daughter. She was such a different soul from myself and I wanted to understand how I could best help her grow ino a free and happy being. Becoming a mother at 23 was a great challenge but also a great joy. Stuck in amongst the books on Astrology was a tiny leaflet-like book which had Auroville on the back cover. I was curious to know what that could be about. I started to glance through the few pages and was totally awestruck when I read the Charter. It seemed too good to be true that there was a place with such a deep vision for our lives here on earth. I walked home with the book in my bag as if in a trance and felt I had found the treasure of my life. And that state lasted for weeks – every time I would look at the picture of Sri Aurobindo I experienced a deep awe. His gaze seemed to be the most beautiful I had ever laid eyes on in a human being. I was mesmerized. It was a spiritual homecoming.
As it turned out the booklet had been made by the first AVI Sweden group. I became part of their newsletter, started to read Sri Aurobindo and soon found Satprem’s books. These were a blessing in enabling me to understand what the Integral Yoga was all about.
I went to Auroville and India for the first time in 1988. After that first visit I started to think about the possibility of moving to Auroville, not mainly because I was deeply impressed by Auroville. Being a social worker I could see the long road that lay ahead to create and practice ‘Human Unity’ but I knew then that I had found the path my soul had come here for. The missing link I had felt in all my earlier encounters with spiritual paths was the evolutionary vision of the Integral Yoga, making it clear why we are here as souls in a human body. The dichotomy I had been struggling with was resolved.
Coming back after my first visit I was asked to take over the AVI centre together with my soul brothers Ulf & Staffan. The old group had split up and part of it was leaving for Auroville. My daughter, now in her teens, made it clear that under no circumstances would she move to Auroville. She did not even want to come for a visit, and until this day she still has not come despite her mother’s deep commitment. So engaging in AVI seemed like a good way to express my gratitude to my spiritual guides. Through the years I have seen the AVI Commitment as a service to help people discover Auroville, just as I did myself with the help of that little booklet.