Teachers , Empowerments and Blessings of Petros
In the tradition of Tibetan Buddhism (Vajrayana), stories of the lives of many of the great masters are filled with encounters with other masters who helped them in their spiritual growth and eventual realization. Enlightened beings such as Tilopa, Naropa, Marpa, and Milarepa are said to have encountered many masters in their own spiritual search, collecting empowerments and blessings and wisdoms from each of them – like puzzle pieces collected here and there, to be assembled into the big picture later on.
These are spiritual teachers I've seen -- sometimes up close and personal, sometimes only as part of an audience -- between approximately 1997 and 2011. These encounters have taken place all over the world, from Los Angeles, to Sedona, to Boston, to India. Some of these people I've sat with on multiple occasions and have developed good relationships with, deriving energy and blessings from their presence. Those whose spiritual energy field and power particularly moved me ahead in my own development are in gold type. There have been others, not publically known, who shall not be listed here. I have also encountered several powerful teachers on the subtle visionary plane, including Gurdjieff and Meher Baba, but these are not listed below.
You might also take a look at some of my “guru reviews” posted here: http://www.nonduality.com/satsang.htm. Some of these opinions were posted many years ago, and my evaluation of some of these teachers may have deepened or changed since then, however.
(ROOT) TEACHERS OF PETROS
Garchen Triptrul Rinpoche www.garchen.com
Tibetan vajrayana lama of the Drikung lineage of the Kagyu school, recognized as an incarnation of several past Masters. He was imprisoned by the Chinese Government for 20 years. Petros received the Milarepa Empowerment from him in May of 2002 at the Philosophical Society in Los Angeles. In August of 2011, Petros received the Chakrasamvara Empowerment from him at the Garchen Institute in Arizona. Petros has, in addition, been granted the empowerments of Vajrakilaya, White Tara, and Green Tara from this Rinpoche.
Khadro Ma www.kalima.org
American woman, teacher in the Tibetan Vajrayana tradition. Also known as Troma Rinpoche. Founder of the Maha Siddha Dharma school in 1999, part of the Nyingma tradition. Met at a couple of her satsangs in Los Angeles. Clear expounder of the Vajrayana tradition, but very concept-based. From her, Petros received the blessing of Yogic Buddhism Embracing Desire.
A rare woman teacher of the Tibetan (Vajrayana) tradition, disciple of the late Chagdud Tulku Rinpoche, in the Nyingma lineage. Petros received the rarely-given Red Tara (Kurukulla) Empowerment from her in Scottsdale, Arizona in 1997. At that time he was given the name Pema Lozang.
Lama Tsultrim Allione www.taramandala.org
Another rare Western woman lama, one time an ordained nun under the tutelage of the 16th Karmapa. Petros received from her the Chod Empowerment in Alameda, California on October 14, 2011.
Lee Lozowick (1943-2010) www.hohmpress.com
Devotee of Yogi Ramsuratkumar; led a community called Hohm in Prescott, Arizona. Emphasis on guru yoga, bhakti, service and surrender. Author of many books including The Only Grace is Loving God; Living God Blues; The Book of Enlightenment; Laughter of the Stones; Zen Trash; and more. Petros spent a brief time at his ashram in Prescott in the mid-1990s. Petros accepted an invitation to sit with him at his kitchen table while he played bridge with other community members, simultaneously dictating teachings for a book that was currently be written about him and also conversing with Petros and answering various questions. First appears laid back, easy going, but soon exhibits a strong will and clear focus with which his disciples resonate. From him, Petros received the blessing of “Crazy Wisdom.”
A living Tibetan master of Dzogchen, the highest nondual teaching of Vajrayana. Though trained within several Tibetan schools (including the Sakya), Namkhai Norbu has long been a proponent of trans-sectarian Tibetan Buddhism, following the lead of the late 19th century Rime (Nonsectarian) movement. He transmits the wordless nondual energy of Dzogchen, rather than specific deity empowerments as is common among other Tibetan lamas.
Polish-born devotee of Papaji; she ran Fire of Truth Sangha in Casitas Vistas (between Ventura and Ojai) in California in the mid-'90s and early 2000s, and had taught around the U.S. including Los Angeles, where she generally met in friend's homes and apartments. Combines silent satsang with dialogue and group encounter work, with more of a psychological emphasis than her fellow Papaji lineage teachers have used. Due to unspecified health issues (multiple chemical sensitivies, most likely) she has cut down her travel and mostly works out of her home in New Mexico. While she was still living in Southern California, Petros attended several of her satsangs and retreats and came to form a close spiritual relationship with this guru which only ended upon her relocation. Sat with in Ojai, Casitas Vistas, Los Angeles and Boston. From her, Petros received the blessing of Tenderness and Opening.
Yogi Ramsuratkumar (1918-2001) http://pages.intnet.mu/ramsurat/
Indian guru and potent bhakta (worshipper of the Divine), died in Tiruvannamalai in 2001 at an advanced age. Referred to himself only as "this beggar," and for many years ran a small tea-stand near the bus station in Tiruvannamalai (South India.) During his life he spent time in the presence of Ramana Maharshi and Papa Ram Dass. Petros experienced his darshan in 1998 at his ashram in Tiruvannamalai. From him, Petros received the blessings of Poverty, Patience, and Devotion.
Ramesh Balsekar (1917-2009) www.rameshbalsekar.com
Met in his home in Mumbai, India during Petros' 2004 Trans-Indian Pilgrimage Mission. An elderly, genteel disciple of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj, and a foremost exponent of uncompromising Advaita (Nondualism). Guru of Wayne Liquorman. From him, Petros received the blessing of the Nondual.
Roy Eugene Davis www.csa-davis.org
A direct disciple of Paramhansa Yogananda, ordained by him in 1951; served briefly as president of the Phoenix SRF Temple before going his own way; travels the country lecturing and giving Kriya Yoga initiation. Petros received the Kriya Yoga Initiation from him directly, in May of 2002 in Costa Mesa, California.
Wayne Liquorman http://advaita.org
Powerful devotee of Ramesh Balsekar, now working on his own. Wrote a funny little book called "No Way: For the Spiritually 'Advanced.'" Uncompromising, straight Advaita, without the shuffle. From him, Petros received the blessing of the Nondual.
Los Angeles-based devotee of Papaji, Yudhishtara is a retired Greek-American executive who offers satsang and loving embrace to all who come to him, free of charge or dogma. A truly honest, sincere and awakened individual, who deserves far more public recognition than he has received. Petros was a regular attendee at his satsangs in West Hollywood for several years. From him, Petros received the blessing of Gratitude.
SECONDARY TEACHERS OF PETROS
Divine Mother incarnation; emphasis on bhakti (devotion) and seva (work and sacrifice in the world.) From her, Petros received the blessing of Service.
Baba Hari Dass www.pacificcultural.org
Indian master, sworn to silence these past 50 years, has formed a strong community in Santa Cruz, California. From him, Petros received the blessing of Silence.
Byron Katie www.thework.org
Awakened in a halfway house in the desert town of Barstow California at the age of 43, Byron (as she is known) teaches a radical form of self-inquiry -- perhaps owing something to A Course in Miracles, perhaps something more to Ramana Maharshi -- that cuts to the bone. Innovative vocabulary and honest approach. From her, Petros received the blessing of Inquiry.
John DeRuiter www.johnderuiter.com
Alberta-based independent teacher. Petros drove from Boston, Massachusetts to Edmonton, Alberta to spend an hour at a meeting of his in August 2003. From him, Petros received the blessing of Stillness Without Dogma.
Zen monk turned Advaitin. Straightforward, unpretentious.
Born Antoinette Varner; a Papaji devotee and neo-Advaitin with a successful organization and prison ministry.
Very large, powerful appearing American guru and devotee of Muktananda, whom he met in San Francisco in 1976. Teaches a physically and emotionally strenuous form of shakti meditation and concentration, not without effect. Emphasis also on darshan (presence of the guru) and shaktipat (reception of energy.) From him, Petros received the blessing of Siddha Shaktipat.
Ma Jaya Sati Bhagavati (1941-2012) www.kashi.org
Wild, controversial Brooklyn Jewish grandmother who incarnates Kali and speaks of love, surrender, and service to the poor and afflicted. Well known for her work with the dying and those suffering from AIDS (more so than less popular diseases). Encountered by Petros at her West Hollywood ashram, where she visited annually from Florida.
Indian mother-goddess incarnation. Steady, simple and clear energy. Experienced her darshan in Los Angeles, 2007.
Douglas Harding www.headless.org
intellectual, British approach combining Zen simplicity with Advaita
singleness of focus.
Master Nome www.satramana.org
Cruz-based, American teacher of Advaita in the pure tradition of
Lama Ole Nydahl www.lamaole.org
teacher of the Karma Kagyu lineage of Tibetan Buddhism (Vajrayana);
he was authorized by the 16th Karmapa and has set up hundreds of
study centers around the world.
Eckhart Tolle www.eckharttolle.com
a best-selling book, The
Power of Now.
From him, Petros received the blessing of the Now.
Sant Thakur Singh (1929-2005) www.santmat.net
of Sant Mat (Holy Path), representative of a lineage which appears to
have many claimants to the throne of adeptship. Emphasis on third-eye
concentration and lifestyle micromanagement as a means to (eventual)
liberation. Good emphasis upon the importance of sound (om) and light
as a simple pathway to awakening. After his death in 2005, was
succeeded by Sant Baljit Singh.
Shree Ma www.shreemaa.org
incarnation of the Divine Mother, this time with a strong musical
bent. Humble, prefers to offer her essence through her music,
directly to the listener's heart.
Sivaya Subramuniswami (1927-2001) www.gurudeva.org; www.saivasiddanta.com
American-born convert to full-fledged Hinduism (or Sanatana Dharma, the Eternal Way), founded the Saiva Siddhanta Church, Himalayan Academy and the glossy magazine Hinduism Today. His church, based on the Hawaiian island of Kauai, teaches an ultraorthodox form of Hinduism, rich with ceremony and hierarchy. Petros met him at the Bodhi Tree Annex, and came up to him following his satsang to ask him a straightforward (if personal) question: Why did he transform himself from a non-ritualistic, straightforward New Age teacher to an ultra-orthodox Hindu, right down to the robes and other accoutrements? He answered that he felt he had only moved down to the “roots” of what he had always been teaching.