"How I Came to Babaji"


I first got a visa to go to India in 1970. At that time the embassy where I got the visa, also issued a card on which it said “June 1970!” I like to think that somehow this was an indicator (seen in retrospect of course) of meeting Babaji, as June 1970 is frequently given as the date for Babaji beginning His mission. Our plan was to hitchhike part way to India, and take a bus for the final stretch from Turkey or somewhere. Try doing that today, ha! It proved to be very tiring. The person I was with got sick from the shots we had taken and I realized I hadn’t even read anything about India. I knew I just wasn’t ready. We ended up hanging out on Greek beaches. I then read Autobiography of a Yogi in 1974 and noticed that strange, magical things were happening around that time, which I attributed to the energy of the book. In those years before I met Babaji, I had seen photos of two different gurus, but none of them had grabbed me, though a friend had been “grabbed” by one when she saw his picture. But I looked at the photo, which she eagerly brought out to her living room, and zip, nada.


I had enjoyed some Eastern religious photos, doing japa of Om Mane Padme Hum, different meditations and Eastern practices and hatha yoga. I also got involved in some of the personal growth seminars of the 70s, including Lifespring. And oh, did I mention drugs? I experimented like others, but soon decided that it wasn’t the real thing that I wanted. Ingesting things to get somewhere and then leaving that state and having the aftereffects just didn’t feel right. I was supposed to find the real thing.


In 1979 I went to a rebirthing training with Leonard Orr in Seattle. I had forgotten to take enough money with me and so I decided to fast for the first time. I had also taken a friend with me and we slept on the living room floor of another Seattle friend. Leonard was going on and on about things and showed two photos of Babaji. The one where His one hand is raised in blessing and the other one where his other hand is on the handle of a train, had special significance for me. I saw balls of white light swirling around it and I left feeling just overwhelmed with energy: it was the same Babaji! It also happened to be the only day my friend was gone and I decided she had a better floor spot, so I moved there. It faced a lamp with a 3-way bulb. When I turned out the light, it began to strobe on and off and again, more balls of white light were swirling and they began to coalesce over the light: it was Babaji! Or three quarters of him, about as clear as I usually see people! (I want to point out that since then, nothing quite this visibly dramatic has occurred). I felt overwhelmed and later that night I had visions of people with shaved heads and that was it: I was going to India!


As I had planned to go with Leonard, I was waiting 4 months (4 crazed months of waiting!), but I was living up in an isolated spot of the Cascade Mountains and we only had a radio phone that didn’t work properly. Apparently Leonard had tried to call me to tell me he had changed the dates, but I didn’t get the call. So basically, in the NY airport as I boarded the plane, I gave one last wistful look around and realized I was going to India alone! Not my plan!


The ONLY contact I had in Delhi was someone who, by American standards, would have been called a jerk, except that the different line in India was something about “past live connection”, etc. Anyway, he did tell me to wait until Babaji came up from the Bombay area, so I looked in my trusty Pilgrim’s Guide to Planet Earth and decided to go to Almora, which definitely turned out to be karmic, as I still felt the connection with that alluring place when I went back there in 2005. Everyone seemed to take care of me and arranged for me to stay with an old Australian man associated with the Tibetan community, as was proper, plus he had a fireplace and it gets cold up there in the winter! So I spent almost 2 weeks wandering the hills, meeting people, learning some Hindi, etc. And one night, shortly before I was to leave, there was a knock on the door in the evening and two English guys showed up with a connection to the Australian man. And guess what, they were also going to see Babaji! So we rented a taxi and off we went. The closer we got (3-4 hours through the winding Kumoan Hills), the more crazed I felt, as the energy of Babaji was probably starting to really hit me, and I felt I couldn’t wait another minute. I was so impatient when they stopped to get jelabis and seemed to take a long time, and as soon as the car stopped in front of the house in which Babaji was at in Haldwani, I kicked off my shoes and ran in, not caring what the more sedate English guys were going to do! I looked up at Babaji and remember thinking, “Oh, he’s fat” I pranamed in the darshan line and He gave no indication that He knew me. (Hello, it’s me…you know…”) We then were told to ask Babaji permission to go to Haidakhan. The two English guys were ahead of me and he just nodded or said something, but when he saw me, he got more animated and seemed to yell, “you…you are running around like a horse and I don’t keep horses in Haidakhan!” My mouth fell wide open and everyone rushed past me as I stood there in shock with mouth agape. Then his closest Western disciple who helped with us Westerners came up and whispered in my ear, “Ask again tomorrow.” There was hope. Needless to say I spent the whole night thinking that statement over and dealing with being zapped with indescribable energy that broke up worlds, (not the best response I know now, but all I was capable of then ) and saw his comment on many levels, but I was still too focused on the outer levels. I decided I would change some things in my life and so I was ready again the next morning. I asked again and Babaji just shook his head and said, “you are still running around” (because it was about the mind of course). I just did a typical female thing when very disappointed, I broke down and cried. After all, I had only come to see him and now I was being refused! Leonard had told stories about people coming from around the other side of the world to see him and he refused to see them. Babaji mimicked me and said “waah, waah, waah...” and rubbed his eyes like he was crying. I immediately stopped, and the thought came, how silly to cry just because something was the way it was and not the way I wanted it. I thought an India woman next to me was asking me questions, where was I from, which state, etc. but it was really Babaji and she was translating. I then looked up and Babaji frowned at me and held out 3 fingers. The translator said, “Baba said you may come for 3 days.” I was ecstatic (probably had dropped a big karmic load too, so felt a lot lighter). When we got to the beginning of the river valley to Haidakhan, I felt blissful, as if a very old dream of mine was coming true, though I could not have described the dream, but it did feel like finding Shangri-La. We loaded up the truck and piled in the back with the luggage, Indian style, and drove up the river bed. It seemed the other Westerners were chatting and having fun, but I thought something like, “you don’t know, I can’t fool around, I barely got here and I have got to get it together.” I tried to do the Om Namaha Shivaya japa, but it was difficult. Later I had a chance to be next to Babaji sometimes and watch him pretend to be angry and stern with people and I would see the people go through their stuff (which seems so unnecessary when it isn’t you or when you feel done with that part) and of course, now in my life’s work I watch people go through all kinds of things. Once Babaji was staging a very dramatic scene, where He stood at the top of the 108 steps and yelled at someone in the booming voice He could have, “Get out, get out!” He even had them “pack their bags “and throw them down some of the steps. Then, as I was also at the top by this time, He nudged me in the arm and winked a couple times. He was just trying to teach us to be aware of something(s).


Many adventures with Babaji continue in my life, now almost 27 yrs. from my experience in Seattle, but I have learned the utmost importance of controlling that wild mind and can report that indeed after all the years, I have made some progress!


O Haidakhan!


O pristine clarity, Divine Jewel

Source of Oneness, Source of Light 

Thou Stream of Life Divine 

My home, my life, my breath

Enraputure me, confound my soul


Dance in my heart, thou current of mighty ripples 

Flow through me till the end of time

Play with me, but leave me not

Thoughts of separation pierce my heart

And weigh a profound shadow


Verdant hills, soft mystic magic

Moon glow on alabaster rocks

Crystalline-blue healing waters

A multi-faceted diamond

My soul the Infinite


Divine Ones float in for darshan

Stars swell lustrous in black inky night

Though Something was destroyed

Created Thou even more

O wondrous Love, Profound Beauty

O One of the All

Linked with Thou am I till the end of Time


Fire receives humble offerings

The Maya of Thy Form, Thy Secret Form

Thy Glance healing to all forms

A place for some to visit

Few to Divine


Mysterious murtis stand sentinel 

Flanking wandering course with blessed looks

Protecting the nourishing waters 

Saffron-clad maidens grow in sunlight's bright rays 

Nodding and hoping for ceremonial times

A sacred chance to serve, to inspire


Fabled tales of eons once past

Once roadless hills, a sequestered cave

Sacred stones of times forgotten

Thy Maya, Place of Maya

A Portal, veiled, to Eternity


Thy fingers reach long down into the plains

Grasping into darkened shafts of broken hearts 

As men sleepwalk though in day

Inverted in their thinking, without knowing why 

Soothe these rifts with Thy abiding Love


Mudslide hills, waters sometimes too deep 

Temperatures lash and press on bodies

Fraught with rocks that trip and bruise

Steep and arduous is Thy entrance

A Shangri-La difficult to attain

Pray, how then shall I reach Thee?


Traumatized in the Maya World

Each wakeful second I do long for Thee

Torrents do bash 

Oft do I stumble on the path 

But Thy blissful gaze pours on steadfast,

Giving life to slumbering seeds


In times of turbulence and destruction

Hold I fast onto Thou

Thou True-blue of all guides, 

And to this Power of Thy Name, 

The One of All Names


Days dash on, lost in Thy deep energy's embrace

And when in grey and dark of winter's night,

My heart still soars with Thy light

And shelters in Thy warm soothing Glow

Enjoying the drift of Thy dimensional chants


Stay with me, Shining Self,

Bask me in this many-splendored Love

Do not turn Thy face aside, yet hold fast lest I slip away

Arrest this errant wandering

Slay me, Fountain of my breath

Then One day, The Infinite, 

We rest forever On


Peggy Thompson,


Bhole Baba Ki JAI

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