Jump to content

  •  

Photo

"i Became My Heart" - Stories Of Leo Cocks


14 replies to this topic

#1 pberq

pberq
  • Members+
  • 785 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Georgia, USA

Posted 22 June 2013 - 06:01 AM

This was posted in the devotee friends newsletter, and hopefully this is not a duplicate post on these boards. I read the sample excerpt, and it was very inspiring.

Subject: New SRF Member Book

This book is about Leo Cocks, a devotee who passed away several months ago....and is called " I Became My Heart".

Cost is only $2.99. Here is more info about the book.....

"I Became My Heart" is a record of the devotion-and the struggles-of Leo Cocks to live the spiritual life as a disciple of the great Indian teacher and founder of Self Realization Fellowship, Paramahansa Yogananda. Newly discovered letters and stories of Yogananda make this book, compiled by Leo's long time friend Paul Gorsuch, an important addition to the literature of the great Master and the institution he founded. But I Became My Heart also offers a heartwarming and human account of the Guru-Disciple relationship as it was lived by one of the twentieth century's greatest spiritual leaders and an all-American boy who felt his Master's unconditional love, and with that channel, access to Divine Love. With dozens of previously unpublished photographs and many samples of Yogananda's personal writings, this book will appeal to and inspire spiritual seekers of all faiths.

Here is the Amazon Swamis World order link.....http://amzn.to/ZB6LsT

#2 omgurudeva

omgurudeva
  • Moderators
  • 1,447 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 22 June 2013 - 10:31 PM

I downloaded the Amazon ebook. Great read. Recommend highly!

#3 IBecameMyHeart

IBecameMyHeart
  • Members+
  • 6 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:San Diego

Posted 24 June 2013 - 03:02 AM

Hi Everyone,

There are two versions available, the eBook and a paperback. You can use the links above to order on the Amazon US site. More info is available at ibecamemyheart.com , including a link to the eBook if trying to order from India. (You can also listen to a brief sound clip of Leo talking about what happened when he first met his Guru.)

Thanks for the kind words, omgurudeva!

#4 brygivrob

brygivrob
  • Moderators
  • 2,470 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 24 June 2013 - 09:28 AM

Just got it myself. So much fun to read!

#5 pberq

pberq
  • Members+
  • 785 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Georgia, USA

Posted 24 June 2013 - 12:16 PM

I didn't realize until reading the book that Leo was the guy in Glimpses of a Life Divine who had questions for Master, but forgot them when he was in Master's presence.
The book has many letters from Master to Leo - very inspiring to read.

#6 charles

charles
  • Moderators
  • 1,839 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Vancouver

Posted 24 June 2013 - 05:45 PM

Hi Everyone,

There are two versions available, the eBook and a paperback. You can use the links above to order on the Amazon US site. More info is available at ibecamemyheart.com , including a link to the eBook if trying to order from India. (You can also listen to a brief sound clip of Leo talking about what happened when he first met his Guru.)

Thanks for the kind words, omgurudeva!


Thanks so much for your message, Paul! For Board members, you can see Paul's other post about the book here: http://forum.yoganan...rs/#entry239193

Paul, you have provided a truly great service in getting Leo's stories into print. This is fantastic! I can only imagine how much work went into the entire project, and for you it certainly would have been a labor of love. This book deserves wide coverage and will be really valuable for so many.

Folks, Paul Gorsuch is an absolutely wonderful guy, and we have known each other since the early 1970s when Vancouver and Seattle SRF members would travel back and forth between cities for retreats, class series, and special occasions. Great to hear from you, Paul, and I hope all is going well with you. I'll get you upgraded to full membership status (although it might take a couple of days or so).
"Truth is relative, and truth is absolute." --Paramahansa Yogananda, in "What is Truth?" Journey to Self-Realization

#7 omgurudeva

omgurudeva
  • Moderators
  • 1,447 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 24 June 2013 - 11:11 PM

Hi Everyone, There are two versions available, the eBook and a paperback. You can use the links above to order on the Amazon US site. More info is available at ibecamemyheart.com , including a link to the eBook if trying to order from India. (You can also listen to a brief sound clip of Leo talking about what happened when he first met his Guru.) Thanks for the kind words, omgurudeva!

Dear Paul
Its been very relieving to read about Guruji's readiness to forgive disciples when they waver.
I also wanted to know, and its not clear from the book.
1) What made Leo leave the SRF Mount Washington centr? Specific reasons? As he seemed very close to Rajarsi and other monatstics and happy with the enviornment.
2) He recommitted to Guruji. What does that mean? Did he stop practicing the SRF teachings and then restart?
Thanks
omgurudeva

#8 lucknow

lucknow
  • Members+
  • 4,392 posts

Posted 25 June 2013 - 04:58 PM

I knew Leo's wife a little, Marcelle, such a charming, lovely lady. Did the flowers at Richmond (now Berkeley) temple for a long time.

#9 omgurudeva

omgurudeva
  • Moderators
  • 1,447 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 25 June 2013 - 09:21 PM

What touched me deeply was that Leo was fully aware of the Divine Stature of Gurudeva and had the right attitude toward him. Example -- he would just be silent and receptive in his presence. No talking, no drama, just pure simple childlike devoted attunement. That in itself is proof of how advanced Leo was in his discipleship and thus Gurudeva gave him so many living experiences of his Divinity -- even from his own lips when he acknowledged his role in this world as an Avatar come with a special dispensation.
I tend to read his joyous readiness to share stories of his Guru repeatedly -- just like a child finding joy in telling how great his dad is -- rather than a specific interest in being the center of attention :)

#10 IBecameMyHeart

IBecameMyHeart
  • Members+
  • 6 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:San Diego

Posted 28 June 2013 - 03:10 AM

Wow, Thanks for the warm welcome Charles! I fondly remember all those trips to Vancouver and all of us heading over to the Seabeck and Windsor retreats over the years. Though I no longer live in the area, those years were very formative for me on the path. It was always good to see you and I did look for you at Convo the last several years. I am unable to be there this year so it is great to connct with you here. Thanks for the kind words about the book. The reception everywhere has been nothing short of amazing and it warms my heart (as I think it would have Leo's) to know that people are enjoying it.

And omgurudeva, how wonderful your post above reflects an understanding of Leo's soul nature. As I wrote in the Preface of the book, Leo's devotion (and the childlike way it was expressed,) was my ultimate takeaway of who he was. Though I always enjoyed the stories, I learned the most from that example of discipleship. I don't know if you ever had the chance to meet Leo, but you are truly blessed to have that understanding yourself. :)

#11 brygivrob

brygivrob
  • Moderators
  • 2,470 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 28 June 2013 - 08:34 AM

Hi Everyone, There are two versions available, the eBook and a paperback. You can use the links above to order on the Amazon US site. More info is available at ibecamemyheart.com , including a link to the eBook if trying to order from India. (You can also listen to a brief sound clip of Leo talking about what happened when he first met his Guru.) Thanks for the kind words, omgurudeva!

Dear Paul
Its been very relieving to read about Guruji's readiness to forgive disciples when they waver.
I also wanted to know, and its not clear from the book.
1) What made Leo leave the SRF Mount Washington centr? Specific reasons? As he seemed very close to Rajarsi and other monatstics and happy with the enviornment.
2) He recommitted to Guruji. What does that mean? Did he stop practicing the SRF teachings and then restart?
Thanks
omgurudeva


OG,

I had a couple of nice conversations with Leo over the years. He told me that he disliked it when people asked him--and they apparently did on a regular basis--why he had left the monastic order. He chuckled at me and said he liked my heart energy.

If I had ever become a monk, I can guess that he and I would've left the ashram for the same reasons.

Here are the two main reasons monks leave the order according to Brother Mokshananda per a friend of mine who is an ex-monastic of SRF:

1. The need for personal freedom. This means being able to go see a movie when one wants, to travel, to eat ice cream, to watch favorite TV shows, to become famous or successful in a medium other than ashram living, etc. Small or big desires can get us. Not everyone is spiritually ready yet to renounce all desires for God alone, and that is okay. To think otherwise is to be naive.

2. The inability to remain celibate. Of the four renunciant vows, this one concerning the biological urge is not attainable by every devotee, especially men. If the habit is prenatally strong, it may take a very long time and a lot of effort to overcome, and that is okay. To think otherwise is to be naive.

I would like to add a third reason, and that is choosing to, or being asked to, leave the ashram for chronic health problems, or other serious conditions that are out of one's control. This is obviously caused by karma.

I bet Leo would not have liked the question, "Did he stop practicing the SRF teachings and then restart?" It is a personal question, and it deals with the past which is gone. What difference does it make?

OM, I don't want to be rough with you, just wanted you to know where I think Leo would be coming from.

Jai Guru, Bry : )

#12 omgurudeva

omgurudeva
  • Moderators
  • 1,447 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 28 June 2013 - 11:15 AM

Thanks Bry that's a very thoughtful post
I felt there could be other reasons as well. Example someone's family unable to cope with their child taking up a path of monsticism. Then there are times when there could lesser evolved folks in the ashrams -- those could become a source of discouragement, disillusionment, hurt -- especially when Master is no longer in form.
Appreciate your understanding of my question. It wasnt driven by idel curiousity or a negative thought - just surprise seeing how greatly evolved a soul Leo obviously was.
Jai Guru
Omgd

#13 IBecameMyHeart

IBecameMyHeart
  • Members+
  • 6 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:San Diego

Posted 30 June 2013 - 03:48 AM


Hi Everyone, There are two versions available, the eBook and a paperback. You can use the links above to order on the Amazon US site. More info is available at ibecamemyheart.com , including a link to the eBook if trying to order from India. (You can also listen to a brief sound clip of Leo talking about what happened when he first met his Guru.) Thanks for the kind words, omgurudeva!

Dear Paul
Its been very relieving to read about Guruji's readiness to forgive disciples when they waver.
I also wanted to know, and its not clear from the book.
1) What made Leo leave the SRF Mount Washington centr? Specific reasons? As he seemed very close to Rajarsi and other monatstics and happy with the enviornment.
2) He recommitted to Guruji. What does that mean? Did he stop practicing the SRF teachings and then restart?
Thanks
omgurudeva


OG,

I had a couple of nice conversations with Leo over the years. He told me that he disliked it when people asked him--and they apparently did on a regular basis--why he had left the monastic order. He chuckled at me and said he liked my heart energy.

If I had ever become a monk, I can guess that he and I would've left the ashram for the same reasons.

Here are the two main reasons monks leave the order according to Brother Mokshananda per a friend of mine who is an ex-monastic of SRF:

1. The need for personal freedom. This means being able to go see a movie when one wants, to travel, to eat ice cream, to watch favorite TV shows, to become famous or successful in a medium other than ashram living, etc. Small or big desires can get us. Not everyone is spiritually ready yet to renounce all desires for God alone, and that is okay. To think otherwise is to be naive.

2. The inability to remain celibate. Of the four renunciant vows, this one concerning the biological urge is not attainable by every devotee, especially men. If the habit is prenatally strong, it may take a very long time and a lot of effort to overcome, and that is okay. To think otherwise is to be naive.

I would like to add a third reason, and that is choosing to, or being asked to, leave the ashram for chronic health problems, or other serious conditions that are out of one's control. This is obviously caused by karma.

I bet Leo would not have liked the question, "Did he stop practicing the SRF teachings and then restart?" It is a personal question, and it deals with the past which is gone. What difference does it make?

OM, I don't want to be rough with you, just wanted you to know where I think Leo would be coming from.

Jai Guru, Bry : )


OG and Bry,

I think Bry is correct about Leo not liking the question. Perhaps not so much because it was personal but as Bry said, because it didn't make any difference. Guruji had told Ma that the time would come when Leo would leave the ashram, and when that time came it would be Leo's time to go. Ma told Leo's mother but I always had the impression that Leo himself didn't know this until much later.

In regards to the karma, Master told Leo once not to try and figure out (general) karma. Guruji said it was far too complex and you could (quite literally) drive yourself crazy. I've tried to picture what this was like for a 23 year old about to be ex-monk in late 1952. You know that it is time for a change and yet how do you maintain the life you have known as a monk? Leo so much wanted to go to India. But he just didn't have the means to do so. So he did the best he could with what he had. As Eric wrote so well in the foreword of the book, this is all any of us can do.

It is great that you go to meet him, Bry. You obviously reached him at the heart level.

#14 brygivrob

brygivrob
  • Moderators
  • 2,470 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 02 July 2013 - 08:58 AM

IBecameMyHeart,
Thanks. It was indeed a great privilege to meet Leo.
Jai Guru, Bry

#15 smallchild

smallchild
  • Members+
  • 30 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 04 July 2013 - 02:36 AM

I downloaded the Amazon ebook. Great read. Recommend highly!

Just did the same. Wonderful book.



Reply to this topic



  


0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users