In Honor of Ram Dass
1931–2019

Drawing by Ganesha Das

“Before the stroke, I was on a very spiritual plane. I ignored my body, took it for granted. When I look at my life, I see that I wanted to be free of the physical plane, the psychological plane, and when I got free of those, I didn’t want to go anywhere near them. But the stroke reminded me that I had a body and a brain, that I had to honor them.”

“I am not this body. I am in this body, and this is part of my incarnation and I honor it but that isn’t who I am.”

“The stroke has given me another way to serve people. It lets me feel more deeply the pain of others; to help them know by example that ultimately, whatever happens, no harm can come. ‘Death is perfectly safe,’ I like to say.”

“The thinking mind is what is busy. You have to stay in your heart. You have to be in your heart. Be in your heart. The rest is up here in your head where you are doing, doing, doing.”

“My guru said that when he suffers, it brings him closer to God. I have found this, too.”

“Suffering is part of our training program for becoming wise.”

“Let’s trade in all our judging for appreciating. Let’s lay down our righteousness and just be together.”

“The next message you need is always right where you are.”

“We’re all just walking each other home.”

“Treat everyone you meet like God in drag.”

“When the faith is strong enough, it is sufficient just to be. It’s a journey towards simplicity, towards quietness, towards a kind of joy that is not in time. It’s a journey that has taken us from primary identification with our body and our psyche, on to an identification with God, and ultimately beyond identification.”

“It is important to expect nothing, to take every experience, including the negative ones, as merely steps on the path, and to proceed.”

“As we grow in our consciousness, there will be more compassion and more love, and then the barriers between people, between religions, between nations will begin to fall. Yes, we have to beat down the separateness.”

“Unconditional love really exists in each of us. It is part of our deep inner being. It is not so much an active emotion as a state of being. It’s not ‘I love you’ for this or that reason, not ‘I love you if you love me.’ It’s love for no reason, love without an object.”

"Your problem is you're... too busy holding onto your unworthiness."

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