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Harris Smart: A Moment of Reconciliation

How the latihan can redeem the past

Harris is an Australian who was opening in California in 1968. He now lives in Melbourne. Here he tells a story from his early years in Subud which shows how the latihan can lead to reconciliation and the healing of the wounds and traumas of the past.

Much of my early experience in Subud had to do with Catholicism.

I'd been brought up a Catholic, but my faith crumbled when I was in my teens, and my Catholic education left me with a residue of bitterness and fear.

In latihan I began to say the Catholic prayers over and over again. The "Our Father", "Hail Mary" and "Glory Be".

One night I was lying in bed when an inner voice said: "Get up and walk." I ignored it, but it kept on. "Get up and walk."

Finally, feeling ridiculous, I got up and put on my clothes and walked out of the house, Where was I supposed to walk to? But it seemed that my feet were guided. I walked down the drive and came to the street. Which way should I turn? My feet turned to the left.

I walked down the street until I came to a crossroad. Left or right? My feet took me to the right.

I walked for a mile or two in this fashion. Every time I had to make a decision about which way to go, it seemed as if my feet were guided. I was moving through a part of town now where I'd never been before. I wondered where it was all going to end. Would there be a destination, or would I walk on forever like this?

I was walking down a street and I looked across and saw a Catholic church and I knew this was what I was supposed to see. I walked across, but the church was locked up and in darkness and I walked home.

I came back the next day and sat in the church. All the bitterness and anger I felt about the church dissolved away. I didn't want to go back to it, but I didn't hate it anymore. I was free and at peace.



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