My Name Is Sulochana
- Walking On The Sunlit Path is the title of a book series that publishes stories told by disciples. I very much like the idea as we are many students of Sri Chinmoy around the world who often know each other only a little.
I came across Sulochana's stories by chance. I had left the meditation room because my eyes were especially sensitive to the ceiling light on that day, and so I spend some time in an adjacent room to relax them a little. I noticed an open book that was placed on top on someone's belongings. As I knew the owner I dared to have a closer look and in the twinkling of an eye I got enamored to what was written there. Perhaps it is easier to read about someone you know. But as I said so little did I know! I only stopped reading because people began to stream into the room preparing to leave. I apologized to the person who owned the book but surprisingly she said, "You can take it home, but bring it back next week." Joyfully I put the book into my bag and on my way home I read whenever the opportunity was given: at the bus stop, in the train and again in a bus, at home. As the book had 'only' seventy-six pages I finished reading it the next morning. For a moment I thought of calling her in New York and thank her for such kind offering and inspiration. I would have loved to tell her how grateful I was to know now a little more about her life especially before she met Sri Chinmoy and the time she spent with him in NY. I would have liked to tell her how moved I was about what she experienced in her life, how I marveled at her sincerity, simplicity and oneness. But I didn't call her yet.
I was thinking of how I could write about her book which is difficult for me, but whenever I saw it lying on a chair ready to get back to it's owner I felt I would like to at least mention it here in this forum. Perhaps others have read it as well?
The book is structured beginning with her childhood in Hungary that she calls "not so happy" because of some early health issues. She was born in 1930. She writes:
"As child I sometimes saw pictures of death...but I never told my parents.
"When I read Guru's books and learned about reincarnation, I was not afraid anymore. Now I know what is going to happen."
In the next chapter, Sulochana describes with such vivid memory her several attempts at escaping from Hungary in 1956 which reads really like a crime thriller. But it was all reality in her life. Many of us know her as a gentle, calm, helpful lady who owns a beauty salon in Queens. Not in the farthest corner of my mind I would have imagined what she had gone through during this time of utter adversity.
What I do remember is a winter some years ago when I visited to New York. I had what I may call a spiritual crisis. Queens has always been like a haven for those who visited the master regularly. I had never been to Sulochana's beauty salon before but she invited me so warmly that I could not refuse. It was star clear that it was her heart inviting me and not any other motive. I will always remain grateful to her recalling our heart to heart conversations during her treatment. They were definitely not skin deep but 'essential' for me at that time.
Anyways, in the third chapter she writes about her new life in America.
"At the Roosevelt Avenue subway station I will never forget somebody was asking directions. I got all red in the face. I was so ashamed of myself because I did not understand what they were asking. I said, "I am sorry I don't speak English."
In the following chapters she writes about how she felt she was pushed towards meditation, how Guru found her in Puerto Rico, hearing Guru inwardly speak to her, about her running, past incarnations, her enterprise, her experience while treating Guru's feet. She offers a message for young disciples, reassures us that Guru will take care of our futures, reveals most special experiences and ends with two poems she wrote for Guru.
I would gladly retype the whole book if only possible...