Back in the nineties, after Vernon Howard had been dead for a few years (he died in 1992), I met a mystic living outside of Atlanta. Her name was Shelley Smith and I have since lost touch with her. She said her guides were two snakes (kundalini) and she had a very strong Indian teacher who was quite old.
She had written a very hard-to-read little book called Mother Light and Bob saw that she was going to be signing copies at the now-defunct Oxford Book Store. I decided not to go, but at the last minute, I grabbed my purse and went with him.
She was sitting there alone with a stack of her books. Beautiful and blond, she was also gracious. We sat and talked with her and suddenly she turned and said to me, “You better be at the bus stop or it’s going to go on without you!”
I said, “How did you know about the bus stop?” For Vernon Howard’s last talk had been about getting on the bus and asking the driver to take you back home. “I didn’t,” she said. “But last night I had the vision of a silver bus with eyes all over it and heard those words.”
I was shaken and found myself taking her up on her offer to visit at her home. So one afternoon Bob and I took the drive outside of town to see her. It was lovely; she was a horsewoman and had a beautiful white horse. Her husband was not on the path and left us alone to visit.
I asked her more about the bus and she said it was absolutely safe. That was how it felt to her. Completely protected. Little did I know that Bob would have his cancer to deal with. She told me that day that he loved me very, very much. That she could feel it and wished her husband had such devotion.
We talked on the phone now and again and she and her husband visited once. And then they moved out of state and we lost touch. By then Bob had died. She called me up one time when I was going through the early days of my sorrow about his diagnosis. I could hardly speak I was so lost in grief. “This is your test,” she said. “It’s about life and death.” And it sure was.
Once she called and I told her I had had a dream about Vernon. In it, I said, I put my hands up to his and he read me a “charge.” She said, “Hold on a minute.” And the phone went silent. When she came back, she said that as I said those words, she felt nauseous and dizzy and wanted to throw the phone across the room it got so hot.” And I said, “Why?” and she said “The power coming through the line was too much for me.”
And so that is how Vernon Howard rolled and I with him. And I know nothing but to keep on keeping on. She told me once to keep digging in the spot where his teachings were, rather than to follow anyone else. They have borne fruit for me and countless others. The teachings are not easy for they demand isolation from society for along time, perhaps forever. But peace is the fruitage and peace is the supply.