I’m bouncing a basketball, running, jumping and tossing hoops in a huge dimly lit gym. The fluorescent uplighting along the walls casts a glow on the shiny wooden floors. A few others murmur about and want to play so I engage them. They seem slower, not having the energy I seem to exude, even though they are years younger.

I’m almost flying around the floor, so I pause. There must be a more efficient way to play. It occurs to me to be still, feel into the moment and use my mind to see the shot. I breathe deep, centering myself and begin teaching them (and myself) to focus. It all happens inside the mind I say, and pretty soon they are catching on. We are shooting baskets with our minds!

Suddenly a huge wind comes through the one of the doors. I notice the red “exit” sign flashing on and off, then all the lights begin flickering. In a white sari, larger than life, Swami Rama floats into the gymnasium. His presence stops the game. “Child’s play,” he scoffs, “What do you think you’re doing? I’ll show you something real… something you can use.”

Then a bundle of keys appear, the kind a janitor might carry and they hover in mid-air. I can tell Swami Rama is directing this with his mind as they jangle near my head. The keys start to spin around me, making a large circle at first. The momentum kicks up, moving faster and tighter… a whirlwind of movement encompasses my entire being. I cannot hold on; I’m in a tornado, dissolving into particles as I spin out.

I bolt straight out the top of head with the violent jolt, yelling,“HELP ME!” It’s loud enough to wake my husband who is in the bed beside me. I don’t know if I’m awake or dreaming, but I’m sitting upright in bed, grabbing unto my flesh. I can still hear Swami Rama’s voice echoing in the room, “I will help you, I will help you…” he says three times.

My heart is pounding. He is here! “He is still here,” I say out loud. The walls of these former monk quarters seem to vibrate as he guides me awake. We are at the Himalayan Institute for the first time, founded by Swami Rama years ago. I have never met the man until now; he passed three years earlier. My husband reaches for me, “you’re alright,” he assures me and as I snuggle into him, he whispers, “pay attention.”

But I cannot sleep. It’s 3:00 a.m., I throw on a robe and wander through the dimly lit corridor.