Chapter 1 - Birth
Goa, India, 1975
After living in Europe for a few years, I decided to travel overland to Goa. A friend told me there were dancing girls on the beach and in Goa there existed an alternative free society where the normal social rules were not adhered to. Upon arrival after three months of travel, I found this all to be true and even beyond my expectations. There were beautiful girls dancing naked on the beach and I could be exactly as I felt I wanted to be.
I built a bamboo hut on Anjuna beach and settled in with my girlfriend. We went to innumerable parties and met many crazy and outrageous people doing their best to be crazy and outrageous. I never felt so free. I could let go of my inhibitons and allow myself among other things to wear exotic clothes and use make-up.
After a while though, I lost interest in parties and being in the scene. I became quiet and stayed mostly around my hut cooking and watching the most glorious sunsets every evening.
There lived in the hut next to us a couple who were different from people we usually met in Goa. The man was Swiss and had been living in India for seven years. Everyday I watched him do exercises and move his body into crazy postures, sometimes remaining for hours in the same position. Somebody told me he was practicing something called Yoga.
His American girlfriend was about eight or nine months pregnant. She told me one day she planned to have the baby in her hut without a doctor. "I am trusting in existence",she explained. It was the first time ever I heard this expression. I found it hard to believe. Growing up in New York City, it was almost inconceivable. I thought she was either crazy or really stupid.
Finally the day arrived. It was a beautiful and sunny afternoon. There was a slight breeze from the sea and it soothed our hot skins. Four of us were present in the hut preparing for the baby’s arrival.
Never did I suspect or imagine that on this day I would meet with truth.

Split Second 1
There was a childbirth one day.
It was in an unusual location by the sea.
There within a bamboo hut,
I became immersed in a sharing
that brought to light the luminosity,
which had always been but was as yet
unseen, unfelt.
We were there helping, watching in awe,
this mystery of childbearing. All the more so
since nobody really knew what to do.
Time seemed to stop.
The air stood still... heavy... and thick.
We were lost in the contractions,
the rise and fall of her breath,
as if nothing else seemed to exist.
Slowly, slowly, the baby appeared,
first the head and finally the feet
until at last he was out and free.
In that moment or some moment
I know not which,
as if a hurricane wind swept through
the hut,
a Presence, an Energy, an
Intelligence or God if you will,
was there knocking us off our feet.
We weeped,
we rejoiced,
we held each other dear,
for so magnificent was its
presence, so absolute was its feeling.
In this moment of Birth,
of truth,
of beauty,
a conscious determination
to know arose.