Just Like You
By Barbara Denempont
When Gangaji was asked, “What was your life like before meeting Papaji?” she answered, “Before Papaji, I didn’t have a life. I had a story of suffering. In meeting Papaji, I have only life. I am only life.” Filled with gratitude for the recognition that he pointed her to, Gangaji asked him how she could truly thank him. He said, “Give your life to this.” Without having any idea what that would mean, she said “yes.” Papaji first sent her to give satsang in the sacred sites in India. And when she returned home, some of her first meetings were held in her own living room.
As word spread, the meetings got larger. When Gangaji asked for help, it graciously arrived. With welcoming, open arms, volunteers and donors brought people together in their communities to meet Gangaji face to face and hear what she had to say.
Traveling to cities like Berkeley, Hamburg, Amsterdam, Perth, Copenhagen, New York, Fairfield ,and many more, Gangaji touched people’s lives just as hers had been touched when she met Papaji in Lucknow.
I was lucky too. By chance, I met Gangaji in Boulder when a wonderful team (who eventually would help create the Gangaji Foundation) set up meetings at the Unity Church. My life was never the same. My first volunteer job was helping to duplicate audio cassettes. I loved that job. Now I play a different role as Executive Director, but the service remains the same. Same service, same heart, just a different hat. It is my joy to play any role that is rooted in my gratitude for what I was given.
In 1993, when the Gangaji Foundation emerged as a non-profit organization, a small staff came into place. New volunteers and contributors showed up to record and transcribe meetings, to publish and translate books into other languages, to provide scholarships, host video groups, and send free books to those living behind bars.
With emerging digital technologies, new opportunities arrived, connecting us all across the globe. The community responded once again with contributions of time, money, and expertise to create Gangaji’s website, podcasts, social media, and live video streaming. Remarkably, now people can access an online video library and have the means to meet with Gangaji, not in her living room, but in their own.
Those serving within and through Gangaji’s Foundation play an essential role that Gangaji could never play. Yes, our lives can be given too. When we naturally respond to the call, inspired by the gratitude in our hearts, we help this beacon of freedom burn even brighter. We offer others the possibility of peace in their lives.
Speaking for Gangaji, myself, the staff, and this passionate community that has gathered to serve peace, we wholeheartedly welcome your participation and support to make this invitation available to all who are interested.
As Gangaji once said, “Love of peace is what brings us together. Serving peace is our opportunity.”