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A Wildfire Burning Out of Control

Image by: Rudolf NuettgensBy Kathy, Washington

One Friday, a few years ago, I started to have a conversation with God.

I live in Washington state, and wildfires were raging there. That year over a quarter of a million acres burned in Washington—the worst ever up to that date.

My brother “Shane,” also an ECKist, lived in a distant part of the state. I had been keeping in touch with him about the fires. And then, for two days, I lost all communication with him. At the same time, I could track the fire closing in on him on the Internet, and I saw that the fire was a mere thousand yards away.

That Friday morning, I had just heard that dozens of homes in Pateros, south of my brother, had been razed to the ground, totally incinerated. Meanwhile, the fire was still out of control and headed toward Shane. Simultaneously, another fire was burning out of control five or six miles north of where I lived.

In the early afternoon I went outside to water the garden and yard. The grass was dry and yellow, and not much water was coming out of my hose. The wind was blowing the light hoodie about my head, and I felt like an idiot watering straw. I was alone and deeply anguished.

I asked, “So what do you expect me to do, God? All those people have lost their homes. What do you expect me to do? How can I plead for my brother’s home when they have lost theirs? And now—now it’s been two days, and I don’t even know if he’s dead or alive. What do you expect of me? Am I supposed to be peaceful and calm? Act as if everything is just OK? What do you expect of me?”

And then it came in loud and clear—God’s voice. But it was the God of the Old Testament.

“What do you want?”

Although I’m an ECKist, I have a Catholic background, and I fully knew this was a voice from the past—a past I had left behind. I felt that behind the question was something with strings attached. A deal could be made. And I stopped myself. This was not who I wanted to talk with. The question was floating in the air, and I decided to drop it. I was not going to make a deal with the lower worlds.

And then I heard the Mahanta’s voice.

“What do you want?”

It was a warm open invitation, the kind that friends give to friends.

I suddenly found myself stopping to reflect and reconsider, for I could feel my ineptitude. Who was I to tell the Mahanta what to do? Shouldn’t it be the other way around? Did I know all things? Do I know what is best for everyone? Do I have better insight than the Mahanta? Who are we kidding? This was no time to be arrogant and forget my standing.

I trusted the Mahanta’s voice. I trusted the Mahanta with everything, all my hopes and fears and worries. I was choosing to let my anguish go and trust the Mahanta, whatever might happen. It is what it is, I said to myself. If Shane is to die, if the house and everything burns, so be it. But let it be. Trust the Mahanta. For you have seen and experienced too much to turn your back on the spiritual reality of your relationship.

And as I did that, the first thing I noticed was that the 35-40 mph winds completely stopped. Complete stillness. My mouth fell open, and my head jerked around to take in the heads-up miracle. Of course there was not a neighbor in sight to witness this. And then a curious thing happened. I’ll try to explain it with what words I can use: One moment I was a human being, standing in a yard, watering parched grass with a drizzle of water; and the next moment I felt myself going horizontal and becoming dematerialized into wind. I felt part of myself leaving and going northward and eastward toward my brother.

After a few seconds of taking in this realization, I found myself in my human body, looking behind as if prompted by something. And there I saw, coming over the mountain, beyond my yard, huge dark rain clouds. Gray clouds! Finally! They were traveling swiftly, and I was laughing. “Ahh, yes!” I cried. “Go! Go! Over there and put out the fire!” And then I caught myself. I wasn’t supposed to be giving directions. But here I was laughing and feeling very buoyant and happy because I knew that something really profound had been revealed to me. I could hear myself jabbering, “Go ahead and put out those fires, if that is what Mahanta wants you to do. Let the blessings be . . . whatever is the best thing . . . let the blessings be.” And I ran inside the house, overcome with joy.

Meanwhile, early that Friday afternoon, my brother Shane was surveying the black smoke making an appearance above the ridge near his house. My brother is a blacksmith. His store is insured, but the shop he built, the forge he built, and the machine he masterminded and created with his own hands were not insured. The sheriff had already driven by, tagged his home, and told my brother they were just going to let it burn. The fire was completely out of control.

There is just so much you can stuff into the back of a car. What are your life’s belongings worth? What do you really value? For Shane, it was the shop. He had put his all into it, and he wasn’t about to leave. No, the least he could do was stand and watch it all burn. And he was saying to himself that he wouldn’t rebuild again. It would be too much. No, this was going to be the end of his vocation, his livelihood. So Shane was going to watch the death of his dream.

But suddenly a fire truck drove up, and the fire chief hopped out and spoke to my brother.

“Got a working generator?”

“Yeah.”

“Watch this. When the others see that I’ve stopped here, they will stop, too.”

First one truck stopped, then another and another, until there were ten fire trucks at my brother’s home. My brother told the fire chief there was a bench of earth behind the trees close to his home. So they ordered and got a Caterpillar and widened that bench. Two planes showed up. One dropped red retardant (at $80,000 a pop), and some recklessly courageous Canadian pilot flew below the treetops to put out the fire with water he miraculously retrieved from some tiny pond. Forty firemen scampered up the raise to meet the fire. Some settled in a makeshift farm lookout tower. Four helicopters dumped water on the fire every four minutes per helicopter like clockwork.

And they held the fire—a fire that was burning hot enough to explode the huge propane tank in front of Shane’s shop, which might have catapulted the fire west across dry grass to consume the neighboring towns. So the “cavalry” saved the day.

What was strange, my brother told me, was that the winds started blowing east. His neighbors found that odd as well. Winds don’t blow to the east in July, he told me.

It’s taken me a long time to write up this experience. Sometimes it’s hard to grasp not really being human so much as being Soul and all the expanse and freedom and discipline it takes to transcend and overcome the obstacles.

34 Responses to A Wildfire Burning Out of Control

  1. Karen says:

    Incredible story. Wonderful experience for Kathy. Thank you so much for sharing.
    May the Blessings Be!

  2. Beatice Carroll says:

    Thank you for sharing your story.
    It reminds me to never have doubt of The Mahanta’s love in the face of severe circumstances and to remember that as SOUL, we are LOVED even in our duress. I understand now, how surrendering it all was pivotal to receiving the gift of love and joy in knowing who we really are as SOUL,a spark of God. My life is so much richer since arriving to the door of the ECK center in Houston.

    Thank you Mahanta and all the SOULS who support you in ECK! I really appreciate you!!

  3. Elke Hughes says:

    Your amazing story makes me realise that the Mahanta’s whisperings: “I am always with you” are a reminder for me to remember always that I am Soul. Thank you for sharing 💛

  4. Julie Greenwood says:

    Thank you for sharing this Kathy. A powerful message so well written.

  5. Amoy Olton says:

    Thanks for your amazing story. From what I have read I have gathered that your heels are dug in deeply into the ECK teachings because of your ability to decipher the voice from the Old Testament and the voice of the Mahanta. I keep finding it very difficult to “Let go and let God” and surrender all to the Mahanta. But your experience has confirmed to me that the Mahant truly listens and the promise that “I am always with you” is very real. Thank you again and May the Blessings Be!

  6. Deepalakshimi says:

    Thank you for the wonderful story. This is a spiritual gift for us to understand that pure love will heal everything. May the Blessings Be.💐💐💐

  7. Isaac Ombe says:

    Thank you for this wonderful, inspiring experience, dear Kathy .
    The experience has shown that the Mahanta is always with us as he has said times without number.
    May the Blessings Be.

  8. Anna says:

    Wow powerful experience. Thank you for sharing. The Mahanta is always with us!

  9. Uche Agburuga says:

    I love the story. Thank you Kathy for sharing. May the blessings be.

  10. Henry says:

    Such courage and trust in the face of disaster; it’s a credit to you that you were able to live the teachings so well. It’s a big thing to trust divine spirit and our inner spiritual guide, the Mahanta, when the little selves are screaming for action. The spiritual exercises I’ve learned in Eckankar are helping me to achieve such an attitude.

  11. Holly says:

    Your last paragraph says it all!
    Thank you for sharing
    Holly

  12. Joan Krystal Levy says:

    This was truly a life changing experience for you and your brother. The miracle of Eck surrounds us but our challenge is in surrender and remembering to not only speak to the Mahanta, but to listen. Thank you so much for sharing this story. It is a story I will never forget.

  13. Geetha Murthy says:

    Thank you for sharing this touching story written so well. It is our Trust in Mahanta that makes all the difference. I am grateful to Mahanta for everything. I simply trust him and be happy and contented.

  14. Abiodun says:

    Thank you for your beautiful and inspiring story especially the ability to rise above the emotions often involved when caring or watching out for the safety and well being of families and loved ones. Thank you.

  15. Santhi Vellu says:

    No sure what to say but I had tears in my eyes when I finished reading. I felt the profound love going through me and i just cannot explain! Thank you Mahanta and thank you Kathy for sharing your story.

  16. subhi r abu jazar says:

    A great story for let go and let God, even in the case of life and death, and the possibility of loosing one’s home and means of making a living. It shows the grace and love of the Mahanta for Soul. Thank you Kathy for sharing this story and may the blessings be.

  17. Chukwuemeka Ozukwe says:

    What more can one ask for? ECKANKAR teaches us everything we need to know when you are open. Thank you such for your beautiful story. May the blessings be….

  18. Vianca says:

    Gracias por tu historia y por recordarme como nos habla el Mahanta.

  19. Jogendra panda says:

    I realised the same in past now I believe the grace of God pours every where.

  20. Zirrus says:

    Yeah. Making a deal with the lower worlds. Highly insightful article, thank you so much.

  21. Billie says:

    Thank you for sharing your story.. I must learn to trust the Mahanta, he will see us through our trials.

  22. Patricia says:

    Thank you so much for your incredible story. I am also a former Catholic. I have had to watch my mother mistreated for years in a nursing home without the legal control to help her. I could not let go and let it be….she is so old and weak…could not understand why the Mahanta has left her there. Like you I have cried out “what do you want me to do?” I have begged him to take her out of this world and give her peace. But unlike you I did not listen to his reply…..”karma” …. It is so hard to let go when a loved one is at risk…..especially when they are so vulnerable. I have wanted to chose the outcome instead of letting the ECK do what is best. Your clear insight into the old religious beliefs of what is “right” and what is “wrong” excludes the higher ECK viewpoint. This inability to let go has interfered with my spiritual progress. Your story has put into a nutshell the essence of this spiritual path of Eckankar……TOTAL trust in the Mahanta and the ECK in every aspect of our lives is the only way to keep moving forward spiritually and to live in true peace. MAY THE BLESSINGS BE!

  23. Pius says:

    I will like to know more about Eck, their believes, who is Manhanta?

    • Darlene Kershner says:

      You may go to Eckankar.org for more information about Eckankar.
      But for me, the Eck is the Holy Spirit, the word of God, that which creates and sustains all life.
      The Mahanta is the inner guidance, the inner master, that shows the way home to God. It is the inner side of the Spiritual Leader of Eckankar, Sri Harold Klemp, the Mahanta, the Living Eck Master, who’s mission is to help all Souls back to God.
      Experience it for yourself. Sing HU. Go to https://www.eckankar.org/hu.html
      May the Blessings Be

  24. Nnena says:

    What a wonderful experience Kathy, thank you for sharing .

  25. Inez says:

    Thank you very much for this story. Everywhere there have been fire and water this year with wildfires and hurricanes. It is a spiritual test to not interfere. Even when everything is lost everything is here. I am reminded of the Law of Economy. Sometimes a lot of karma is burned off. Sometimes an experience, even a tragedy is not wasted, rather it speeds up my development as Soul. Everyone has the right to have their own experience which is neither good nor bad.

  26. Stella Udu says:

    Thank you for sharing your incredible story Kathy. To me it is a good example of how surrendering to the Will of the Holy Spirit is better than trying to direct it.

  27. Margaret Penney says:

    Thank you for sharing. So many people are dealing with the fires now. Trial by fire. Surrendering to the Mahanta, The ECK, Holy Spirit can make us aware of how God works in our everyday lives. I am so grateful for the ECK Teachings.

  28. Laurence Cruz says:

    Beautiful lessons beautifully written — and as someone living in Southern California as it goes through record wildfires, beautifully timely. Thank you for sharing your experience.

  29. Sergius Obi Udengwu says:

    “I trusted the Mahanta with everything, all my hopes and fears and worries. I was choosing to let my anguish go and trust the Mahanta, whatever might happen”. I love these words. This is what total and absolute reliance on the Mahanta, the Inner Master means. When I practice this, I simply say,” To be or not to be I am in the safe hands of the Mahanta, who has promised – I am always with you.”

  30. Rama Badarou Soule says:

    Thank you for sharing Kathy. Your testimony regarding the Mahanta’s love for Souls is edifying! Absolute trust, faith and total surrender to the Mahanta awaken to the predestined gains to Soul, a happiest entity. I have been trying to complying with the spiritual disciplines and surrendering completely, in order for the Holy Spirit to continuing using me as a channel, no matter where I am. In addition, the Mahanta’s love can extend to our parents/family or even our friends regardless their religions. ECK is strong, it’s undeniable! The Mahanta can completely and irrevocably change everything.
    Indeed, a long time ago, communicating DIRECTLY with God was my concern. Thanks to the Mahanta, I did realize that there is really no barrier between God and me. Everything depends on me, as does for every Soul. I feel very happy to be ECKist. Thanks again Kathy for sharing. May the Blessings be!

  31. Sara says:

    Such a wonderful experience, reminds me again to surround difficult situations to ECK & Mahanata. As you said, “let it be…. then everything will fall in the right place.”

  32. danny says:

    I love that sentence “I was not going to make a deal with the lower worlds.” That really helped me today. Thank you Mahanta!

  33. Connie Bowden says:

    So powerful…thank you for sharing.

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