Updated: Apr 22, 2020
Terry is forty-one and has a daughter. From childhood on he planned his life to involve science, stars, aviation, astronautics and exploration. In college he discovered he needed humanity and wanted to relate to people and share so they could set up conditions and catalyze their own connectedness. He is a jyotishi, and jyotish is people oriented. It is the science of astrology from the Vedas which connects the parts to the whole of each individual. He is doing this work to embrace his humanity.
Terry is sensitive and compassionate, non-threatening, progressive yet distant. He gives love and shares intensely, yet part of him is not connected. Fun, for Terry is being happy, contented, and warm in sharing with others. (Interview: late ‘80s)
Terry’s inner life:
I knew God was important to me. In a quiet state of reverie my being felt God's magnetism pulling me. I knew it was proper to have my attention go in that direction because when I did I had more light inside. The form of the words and actions in church were foreign to what God was so I moved away from it. Church was not a severely angular or separational experience but it didn't get to the truth, so church was separate from life as I knew it to be.
The way I discriminated was visual. If something had light to it, it was part of realness; if it had no light it was separate from it. In church whether the priest was light or not would make the difference. I knew these things as a child but only later did I understand clearly the experience of discrimination I had in childhood. My experience as a young adult pushed to level ten my knowledge of angels, light, quality, direction and how a person is connecting.
Early on I told my parents stories of my experiences and they said, "What's this? Why are you making-believe this?"
Once when I was six or seven I was playing outside and a storm was coming up. I saw these giant thousand foot tall beings in the sky, the devas of storm which were dynamic in the environment. They recognized me watching them. I told the story to my parents, but that was the last story I told. They didn't believe me and that hurt. They thought I was saying something childish or stupid.
I saw the world as separate but friendly. At the same time I knew I had a greater home someplace else, in the infinite expanse of the sky. The only thing that brought me solace was knowing my Father's kingdom within infinity. I had no doubt I would get what I wanted in life, and, yes, I did get it.
My world of dream was rich. There were dynamic spiritual forces at play which involved centers and streams of energy in my body. As an adult I finally understood these as chakras and kundalini. As a child I experienced rivers of light, power, heat, fire, worlds of infinite light and vastness. It was mind-boggling and body-boggling. The energy would push so hard through the cells that the cells could no longer absorb it and I would be thrown back into the world of humanity. I would return to my body and be physically jolted out of bed. I'd be a liquid stream of light, not light, liquid, rush rushing, explode—I’d wake up in my body.
As a child I used to have fevers but they never knew why. They would come after the fire of kundalini. Especially I would burn with fever for seven days every first week of January during the silence of the world in the heart of winter.
I never questioned my life because I didn't know any different. As a child I was purely exhilarated by it.
Until I was eight or nine this is what my life was: During the day I went to school.
At night during sleep I would wake up in my dreams, which is to say, my body didn't wake up. I would walk outside and see star patterns and fields which aren't overhead in Elkhart, Indiana. I still have never seen them except in those times. Leaving the body was a fluid rush and I'd be out. I almost always ascended immediately into the sky. I would be flying about visiting places I hadn't seen in waking.
I flew all over Elkhart and went many places life later found me in, places I later hitchhiked through and places where I found my dearest friends in later life. When I went there later I would know which street a certain house was on. I had physically seen it during those childhood night flights.
Once I asked where I was.
An inner voice answered, "This is Mars."
My astral body was made of light. I noticed it was lighter than my physical body. There was no difference between me and the air around me, no separation between me and the air as far as density of fabric. I felt more at home and more natural in my astral body. It was "that which gave me life." In that place I was no longer separate.
Mostly I traveled alone. Once I would get to my destination, I'd sometimes meet other people there. They were always gentle and kind and also in light bodies.
The instrumentality for learning took place in the dream state where I didn't leave the body, but I didn't learn from teachers. My instruction took place in an abstract field of intensity like the burning bush, heat and light. But it was the body that burned, primarily the heart. It spun like myriad numbers of golden suns generating a tremendous amount of heat.
There was a counterpart, a purification of light and dark. When the experience was too intense I'd find that counterpart in the environment. As the light rises, the dark rises. As I'd look out into the shadows I'd see lesser evolved entities, forms and shadows. They were heavy, and I could feel their pull.
They couldn't get close because I was protected as if in the ring of light surrounding a campfire. A force outside of me never allowed those entities to get close.
"It is never allowed."
This force was protecting me. It was not separate from me. I knew it was me. I always knew the density of beings. It had the same density as me but it was bigger. I always felt safe yet there was a wafting of fear. Even in that wafting I felt safe.
For me as a child, God was the infinite, unlimited space, always peaceful and encompassing. God had no form, no personal aspect. Before adult life God had no form for me.
I was conscious in my mother's womb. To talk about it crosses adult and child constructs, but this is what it was like: I was in a place where I knew I was not born yet. I was in a holding pattern, a state of being contained, limited. I was like a skittish horse. It took a long time before I wasn't frightened by the fear of containment.
In childhood I had three recurring dreams:
1. I was surrounded by vast eternal limitless space. All of a sudden in one moment a crashing, a being compressed into a place of limitation. I felt fear, broke out in a cold sweat, and jolted out of bed. I had this dream until I was twenty-three or twenty-five.
2. As I would being to fall asleep I would rise out of my body. I was no longer a form, I just was. I would be pulled by unyielding gravity into a huge golden sun. It was pure bliss. Then at some point I would fear not being individual anymore. I put the brakes on with such force it hurt my physical body which would stop breathing and become rigid. Then a bolt of lightning would go through my body and I'd explode out of the experience. I would find myself sitting straight up in bed or standing in bed breathing hard and perspiring. My mother would come in and hold me. At first when it happened we'd talk about it, but since it was no longer reality and also because it didn't fit her world, I soon stopped.
3. This third dream was a little odd. I understand it now as an adult. I would leave my body and circle this big tree. I would enter the same way into the tree's pattern every time and circle once. At the base of the tree was a gigantic fifty-foot cobra. It would ascend and follow me spreading its hood. I felt no fear. It was not evil. It was pure incarnate truth, absolute and resolute.
It's being stated unequivocally: "Do not depart from truth."
I would come to a face—my face was South and my back was North—and the snake was facing North directly in front of me. I was the supplicant. I was standing floating in the air in front of the teacher in a position of humility.
The eyes were right there, even with mine. They were eyes of unlimited space, coalesced infinity. I looked into a vastness which I had always known and seen, into a cognitive intelligence which had known and lived this. I was at home so I was not afraid. It was a time of testing and I had come to the headmaster to see if I passed.
Did I pass? I was always allowed to come back again. This was not humankind. I was seeing to the absolute core of being. The snake represented the absolute precision of evaluating the fiber and core of being. It was perfectly aligned, not willing to have even one something out of place. As a child all I knew was that I was being reviewed with intense purpose. Now I see that I was on a mission and had to fulfill the obligation of the mission.
After having one of these three dreams I wouldn't feel a complete and utter separateness, yet neither did I feel connected with what I'd been accustomed to. It was as if two worlds occupied the same place but in a different time.
In all of it there was only one really scary experience which happened when I was thirteen years old. The energy was so powerful that I was walking around with a liquid stream of light pounding in my third eye. Light had always been awake in me, but now I closed my system to these experiences because I feared that if didn't, physically I would die.
It wasn't until I was twenty-six and had been practicing meditation for several years that the level of experience I had had at thirteen flooded back in. After that time, the night and day experiences of childhood were integrated and I began to live with a sense of continuity.
As a child the only beings I saw were devas of the world and nature. I didn't see fairies, elves and gnomes. I saw humungous huge angels and people, sometimes three thousand feet tall. It was mind-boggling, ludicrous. I would see them in the sky, on the horizon, or near trees in the distance, always spatially connected with the environment. Occasionally the beings were allowed to view me as I viewed them through the window of seeing. There was, I'd say now, a knowingness between us, a recognition, a mutuality.
I resonate with a different kingdom from the fairies in the woods. My experiences were exemplified by the spectral range of the kingdom. Later I discovered that my little sister knew the fairies, and we began enjoying a magical kingdom together. Different things were awakened for each of us, enlivened in our environment. Through her I got to know the beings that existed in our home, the major angel in the home and a queen fairy. We would follow the queen fairy from room to room as she did her job of sealing each room for the night. Here we were, a ten year old girl and a twenty-three year old man, talking about what the queen's wand looked like, what she was wearing, who was with her. We had a cat who could see the fairies, too.
As a child my vision was just there. The beings I saw had feet touching the ground and bodies scraping the clouds. They were made of light, were transparent yet solid at the same time. They were of beautiful pure bold hues. The storm devas wore bold capes. The colors of their clothes were a cacophony but all the colors fit in together—bold magentas, bright blues, bright leaf green, intense purples.
The themes of the sky, stars, travel and knowingness were always there. I made visits to other star systems. They weren't home and I went by random selection. My astral body went wherever it did. A lot of space ships came into my environment when I was out of the body. The ship would just be there with no connection between us. I devoured everything I could learn about the stars, planets and astronauts.
There was no explaining any of this to myself. I was simple: "This is what it is."
As an adult I see an integration. I know worlds not visible to ordinary eyes. It gives me love, nurturing, continuity, family. It gave me a greater glimpse of a more universal identity, but humbly speaking, I am part of a big whole. For the past twenty years I have done a simple spiritual practice. There's no distinction between my life today and my spiritual life. I am a spiritual life. Every thought, every action is in the context of a big expanding something inside of me.
More about Terry’s childhood:
I grew up in Elkhart, Indiana. My dad was a salesman and my mom was a hairdresser and did odd jobs. There were four kids and I was second. The other three were girls. It was fun. I was happy but there was a lot of separateness in my family. I remember us sitting at the table all together and everyone feeling separate. During summer vacation we'd go to the lake. My dad loved to fish, but my mom didn't, and this led to more distance in the family.
I had dark hair and eyes. I was uncoordinated as a small child, so in second grade I had to take tap and modern dance lessons to coordinate my mind and body. I liked it. The class must have worked because by junior high I was very athletic, playing tennis and football and wrestling.
As a child I liked to be outside in the woods building forts. We lived in the country across from farmland. No one lived nearby so I found friends in the woods, different beings that lived there. I was playful but didn't take big risks. I would walk in the woods with a sense of wonder and isolation, but since the woods extended only a half hour's walk, I was never afraid of being lost.
I was a simple, well-behaved child and loved to read. I spent hours in creative play with my toys and army men. There were hills in our yard and I'd imagine action on a battlefield. It was a long drive to bring kids over so I usually played by myself. I had a sister two years older, and sometimes I'd play Monopoly with her and some older neighbor kids.
When I was inside I was thoughtful and quiet, but since I enjoyed the things I did, I was enthusiastic and focussed. My dad and I were distant but not sad or angry, and my mom and I were very close. She inspired a love of reading and writing in me. Reading was a springboard for making up stories. I read non-fiction, especially about historical events, everything from the signing of the Declaration of Independence to the events that led up to Pearl Harbor. I also read about scientific discoveries like the steam engine, but before long my interest centered around astronomy. I loved to read about stars and space.
I wanted to be an astronaut, a sky and time traveller, when I grew up. I dreamed I was going to master the stars. In the nighttime I was always someplace, astral traveling. Anything was available to me. I have been a witness to my life, not personally involved in it. It wasn't uncomfortable, for, although in a sense I was always alone, I was never lonely. I watched the stars and communed with them. The stars represented that which was unchanging, that which I was. My mother understood me very well and there was a deep bond between us.
Although during all of childhood I never had a friend who understood, I didn't mind it. I wasn't miserable. I had a good time with other kids and we rarely fought. My friendships were dynamic. I tended to be a leader but I was subtle, so we'd generally accomplish what I wanted and the other person would think it was his idea. We built forts out of loose branches, went to the ponds or the stream to catch frogs and snakes.
In school I did well and was bright, alert and attentive. I'd raise my hand to do everything first. It was thrilling and I enjoyed it. I didn't have to study. Science was my favorite subject. School was warm, and I felt rising energy and satisfaction there. I didn't feel alone in school. I always knew the emotional content in other people's lives. I'd sense the intensity and the undercurrents in the other kids. I felt thrilled with the creativity of learning, like the warmth of hot tea going down and spreading through me.
My father was Swedish Lutheran and my mom was Catholic. In the early years we went to the Lutheran Church, then in sixth or seventh grade Mom took us back to the Catholic Church. We went to church every Sunday. I wondered why the people stood in the pews yet were not really there. When we went to the Catholic Church they put me in first grade catechism and I was embarrassed. I felt stupid, yet I didn't feel stupid. We'd go to classes and the nuns and priests gave more attention to my quest. I had a lot of questions but I wasn't satisfied with the general dogma used for answers. Later I met a kind priest and we talked for hours through the years when I was thirteen to eighteen. He never responded with dogma but would say, "I learned it this way . . ."