In the peace and stillness of the cool morning, I watch golden leaves gently quaking and drifting down. In this hushed moment, musings of my life slip by while I don my tattered welding clothes. It’s time to work on Great Swan Peace Cathedral.
How much longer my life…? What time is left to finish this huge gift of my all? These are always in question at my age. But my life has been fed, led, nourished, housed, helped, protected, graced, taught and uplifted. I have also struggled, suffered and abhorred the limits of my ego patterning.
My whole adult life I have sought to grow and change, seeing agonizingly slow conversion. But the difficulties of my life seem minor in the extreme compared to terrible possibilities here on earth. My life, for all kinds of reasons, has been a comparatively gentle, easy one, for which I am deeply grateful. I feel indebted. I owe Life Itself and the Source of all Blessings, I owe the world that supports us all. I owe what I have and can do. My heart overflows with the urge to give, to serve, to help and uplift others.
Great Swan Peace Cathedral is the expression of this deep urge to give to All of my highest capacities. It is also for me a miraculous story. I will let you be the judge.
How Great Swan Peace Cathedral began
It was 2002. In a kind of “free fall”, I was letting go, surrendering, falling from ordinary states into unknown places and passages through too many grueling days and nights with no sleep. There was a feeling of sharing that space with all of humanity. In that space there was a deepening darkness. An understanding was being conveyed that I was always be a warrior for the Light where ever I might be by always standing firmly for and as love in the face of darkness, always serving the higher good of all.
Then the day came when I could not go on. The difficult passage was nearing completion. I told Loren, my husband, that he had to do something as I was nearing death. He went to his men's group and cried to them. Someone gave him a hand full of a new drug and said it would make me sleep.
I prayed over the pills to my Beloved Heart Master, Adi Da Samraj, and to the Light above all lights, that should I survive that night, if there was yet more service for It, that I had to do before I died, for that to be made clear to me.
In the next moment of my conscious awareness, A beatific vision appeared hovering long before my mind's eye. Words were spoken very slowly as the vision lingered; ”P E A C E...................C A T H E D R E A L”
As the vision's profound beauty and serenity pierced my being at an unspeakable depth, I was given to understand THIS was to serve World Peace.
On a more rational level it was clear this vision indicated I would live and had a great deal of work ahead of me. I hoped there would be some help! And I put aside all effort to try and figure out how this could possibly serve World Peace! That was a mystery I would simply have to allow unfolding.
I named the structure, a dome covered in and surrounded by exquisite metal art with spires shooting up from its crown, “Great Swan” to honor my truly Great Spiritual Master, Adi Da Samraj.
Only 3 years earlier in 1999, Adi Da had Blessed my jewelry art work after Guiding that creativity in service to Him since 1980, thus helping me to out grow many limitations as an artist. Along with his Blessing he suggested I try welding large metal sculpture. This was not something I was interested in doing, but a true Spiritual Master's personal admonition is not to be taken lightly.
So I got my husband, Loren, to help me weld a garden gate. Upon its apex I made a small spire, for some reason. Later, upon seeing that spire on the installed gate, my heart shot infinitely UP into Light for a brief/ eternal moment. By the time I returned I was passionately in LOVE with spires, wanting to make them forever more pointing to the Light all over Dandelion Farm.
Thus I happily began welding steel spires as a way of remembering, loving, serving and pointing to that Brilliant Divine Light infinitely above and the overwhelming heart ecstasy It elicits.
It seemed Beloved Adi Da, as always, knew and Worked with my personal secrets that lay far beyond my conscious awareness, that were secrets to me! And he had already prepared me to fully receive and be capable of fulfilling the Peace Cathedral vision “calling” that came on the threshold beyond life.
But there was another major “calling” that had been given earlier that needed to be completed...
A profound but temporary spiritual opening had occurred many years before when I was 21 that initiated powerful premonitions of my life to come as a devotee of Adi Da Samraj. That taste of Divine Living Light became the inspiration of my life. I longed to always serve that Conscious Light that I knew instantly to be my True Self and the True Self of all. I cried for joy over my first small, primitive jewelry creation that indicated my jewelry art work could become a gift of service to the Light.
When at long last Adi Da was found and we were preparing to move to become his devotees in1979, a “calling” had come to me to give all we had and could do in service to the Divine, making it clear a sustainable community farm was to be our service. The needed financial means would be far beyond what we could muster for our own sustainable circumstance. But the means to fulfill this calling were provided miraculously. Thus we knew we had a profound obligation to the Divine to accomplish Dandelion Farm as our service to the Light, to our Master and to the world. These stories can be found on www.DandelionFarm.org.
After that first brief spiritual awakening at age 21, many premonitions came to me of our life as devotees of Adi Da in the future. The sustainable farm “calling” as we were about to approach Adi Da was put to 15 years of intense testing and periodic Blessings as I learned to surrender beyond self, allowing all to be Guided. I grew to simply allow, trust and be moved by powerful signs of Guidance.
The means to stay alive to create Great Swan was also Given.
The vision of Great Swan Peace Cathedral has been the culminating "calling" of my life, a huge undertaking, but there was never a question about doing it, even as my health was constantly faltering and tenuous. I had asked what I had left to do, and it was revealed directly there after. What I had learned before had to be used. It would be a tremendous ordeal, but one of love and self giving, dependence on Grace constantly for so many steps to manifest. This has simply become a way of life.
Adi Da, passed from his physical body in 2008. It was an unspeakable loss at first. But his Blessings and Help slowly became very evident and have grown far stronger in my life.
On Sept. 10 2013 a Blessing was requested for the safe beginning of Great Swan Peace Cathedral over the burial vault of Adi Da at “the Brightness” Temple in Fiji. On that day the knowledge and means to actually stay alive to create Great Swan came to me “coincidentally”.
I was barely staying alive on almost no sleep for many months, the worst since I had nearly died in 2002. Nothing seemed to help. Drugs were useless. As I left a celebration early that day, I happened to be near a friend I barely knew who was also leaving early. She told me she had heard of my insomnia and felt it was caused by a gene mutation she similarly had. And there was real natural help for it! This information proved true and saved my life. Over the next 5 years I have grown steadily stronger and healthier while working on Great Swan Peace Cathedral! This is a complete miracle to me.
A quote from Rabindranath Tagore:
I dreamed life is Joy. I awoke and saw life is service. I served and saw service is Joy.
This is what I have learned. Making art jewelry for 40+ years as a constant expression of love of Light, Serving to create sustainability for the future on Dandelion Farm and working to bring Great Swan Peace Cathedral into this reality have been a gift of my all to the Divine and for the world. It is a tremendous joy to serve, to give all I have and can do. This is a most happy, Blessed way to live. May the world discover this secret. Giving of self as service is Joy.
The day is slipping by, just as my life is. I must get to work out in the welding shop!
— by Candace Turkatte