Yogi Bhajan visited Miami each year before going to the winter solstice in central Florida. This is the big gathering of kundalini yogis to come together, do lots of yoga, chop lots of veggies, and participate in White Tantric Yoga. One of his secretaries, Sat Simran Kaur grew up in Miami and had some connections for Yogi Bhajan to get a room at the nicest hotel in town, The Fountainbleu. It was 1974 when it was arranged for Yogi Bhajan to receive a key to the city of Miami. Being an avid photographer, and owning a quality camera, I was invited as the official photographer. It was fun and a bit exciting as the mayor sent a limousine to pick us up for the trip to the mayor’s office. I rode in front next to the driver while Sat Simran was in the back with Yogi Bhajan. We even had a motorcycle escort. Two motorcycles actually helped to direct us through traffic and make the journey easier. Actually a fun experience.

Everything went well, we met with the mayor, Yogi Bhajan received the key to the city of Miami, the official photo was taken and we were now on our way back to the hotel. Sat Simran asked if I wanted to look at the key. She removed it from the case and handed it to me. I held it in my hands, I tested it to feel the strength of the key to the city and with only a little effort, it snapped in two pieces. Sat Simran started yelling, how could I break this? She went on with an angry voice they would have to get a replacement and other words of shame. Before I could feel bad for such an innocent gesture, I noticed Yogi Bhajan laughing. I relaxed and just apologized to Sat Simran for my blunder. 

I have always thought the key to a city should be more solid, more sturdy than to break with the slightest pressure with a few fingers. This is one of my defining qualities. I like to test everything. As long as I put my heart behind my actions, all is fine. Putting my heart behind all my actions required some painful lessons, many I have learned, and others are yet to be experienced. This testing impulse I possess means I want to know if things work, how they work and what will be the benefit. Yes, in the teaching manuals all these things are explained, but they are just words. I want to know and that only comes with experience and some experimentation. I am not suggesting you should begin breaking things in your life to see what is sturdy enough to survive. I am suggesting you make your own experience in life. Books are like road maps. They can give you an overview of the territory, but going on the road will be the real way to know the best way to go. 

Sat Simran Kaur and I are friends who happened to go to the same high school in Miami Beach. Life is a circle and we are all part of one family.