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Seeking Light in Language

July 4, 2009 by Jo Ann Hamm

purple-rocketsJo Ann Hamm lives in Williams Lake, BC, and has been returning to the Ashram since her first courses here in the early 1990’s.  She shares with us 3 of her poems, intimate and Light-inspired expressions of a life touched by the Teachings.

I first heard of Swami Radha and the Ashram when I took a hatha class at Selkirk College in Castlegar in 1973, when my son was 3 months old.  The seed was planted but it wouldn’t germinate for some years. Although I would hear of the Ashram now and then, I was busy with family and going back to school at Selkirk College when my son entered school.

Writer and professor Fred Wah convinced me to take the Creative Writing program in Nelson at David Thompson University (now called Kootenay School of Arts). After finishing there in 1982 I moved to Williams Lake. Some years later I found myself in another hatha class. One of the students brought in a copy of “Kundalini Yoga for the West” and asked if anybody would be interested in going through the book with her.  I took the book home and was drawn in.  Swami Radha’s words went right to my heart. These were the words I had been looking for.

I went to my first ten day course in 1993 at the Ashram and took the YDC in 2001.  I go as often as I can. When I go it is like going home… to my spiritual home and family. We formed a group here in Williams Lake in 1992, and we still meet weekly. Although the group attendees have shifted and changed over the years, Swami Radha’s teachings remain true. And my son… he’ll be 36 years old this month.



blossom-in-morning-lightdigging through layers
black earth worms stones
turned over lifted
examined roots pulled
decisions made
unwanted discarded
new seeds planted

standing up stretching
Divine Light
scent of cherry
apple blossoms
and lilac fills the air


writing it all down
this way that
seeking clues

what is real
not this surface angst
these tumbling thoughts

take time
to breathe
invite the Light

write it all down
answers come from
still quiet deep inside



Looking for the Light

light-in-laundryfinding the Light
in the soapy bubbles of dish water,
sparkling on rushing river currents,
hiding in the centre spokes of my bicycle,
inside reflections of my coffee cup,
glowing through blossom petals,
warming the buzz of a fuzzy bee,
caressing the face of buddha,
falling across my kitchen floor,
illuminating the fresh hung laundry,
glittering in a rainbow arc of sprinkler water,
it’s a daily practice looking for the Light

No Comments »

  1. Momma, you’re beautiful!

    Comment by Yuri — July 5, 2009 @ 7:41 pm

  2. I also took the YDC in 2001 with you – good memories! I especially like your poem “Looking for the Light”. So simple and “ordinary” to find the Light in everyday things – wonderful!


    Comment by Diana — July 8, 2009 @ 9:32 am

  3. Thank you. What a wonderful set of poems. Thank you for reminding me the divine is always so close by.

    Comment by Lesley — July 9, 2009 @ 7:22 am

  4. Yes, the Light is always there if we can just see it, and you are seeing it and sharing it. This is lovely. Thank you.

    Comment by Joan Andre — July 9, 2009 @ 12:54 pm

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