Mothering as a Meditation

an interview with Ma Satyam Shahido and Ma Deva Tui

HAHIDO: For the last 18 years mothering has been my main meditation. It's come before career, before pursuing something in the world for myself. I’ve given it my 100%. I’ve done the very best I could with it.

I took sannyas when Tui was in my belly. Osho was my first taste of unconditional love and Tui was my second.

I loved being pregnant. Having her was one of the highest experiences of my life. Just to feel my body that much, just to feel existence moving through me – it was incredible. You read all this stuff about having babies and breathing this way and not doing that, but actually it’s about getting out of the way and doing nothing – because existence decides the day that it’s going to move the being through. All you can do is remove yourself and watch. The more you’re into meditation the easier it is to have a child.

My mothering, I feel, came through Osho. He gave me the space to just be with her and to allow her to be who she was with me.

When I first had Tui I was tense and uptight. I was so into being a mum and being best mum in the world and doing everything that I could possibly do to create a conscious being, that there was tension in it. Then I came across something Osho said about mothering: that to be a mother all you can do is be yourself and let your child know who you are. And when I read these words something in my whole body just let go. I cried and went home and was never the same again with her.

I realized that up until that point I had put myself into a role: to be her good mother and do everything right and breastfeed for so long and do this and do that. Now I just relaxed. Now I realized that here was a friend who had come to be with me and all I could do was to be myself with her. All I could do was to bring as much consciousness as I could to not lay my stuff on her, not put any of my unfulfilled dreams on her, so she could be herself.

My own mother didn’t know me. What she wanted for her daughter was to marry a good man who made good money – and to live around the corner and have kids and come home once a week. And because I wasn’t that she didn’t know who I was. She just kept wanting me to be that, and waiting for me to be that – and I never was that. It was so painful for me that she couldn’t see that I wanted something different for myself. So one of the most important things in my life is to be friends with my children so they can share with me honestly about anything.

I wanted them to develop naturally sexually. I didn’t have that when I was growing up. I wanted Tui to feel comfortable to be sexual in her own room in her own bed – to feel that there was nothing wrong with it, that she could talk to me about it, that it was the most natural thing. And what I wanted for her, happened.

TUI: My sexuality came very naturally. It’s just been an easy thing. My mum came to me and really let me know that it was OK. She let me feel open to come to her and talk to her about everything. It happened really nicely.

SHAHIDO: My heart is just totally touched with gratefulness. Her connection with her boyfriend is like everything I would have liked for myself – that friendship and that closeness and that inquiry together about what love is.

Her boyfriend lives with us now. He’s 18 too and it’s so natural. It just feels that we have another member of the family.

TUI: I’ve been really surprised at how easy it has all been for her – me and my brother becoming sexually active. I just hope I have such an easy time with it when I’m a mum, because at this point I don’t think I would. When I found out my brother was having sex, a part of me was devastated. He’s my little brother!

SHAHIDO: I just feel that her happiness is my happiness. I’m really happy for her because I know she was ready to have a boyfriend.

I thought: he’s making love to my daughter, now what am I going to give him to read? I’m going to give him this book on divine love; I’m going to give him this little bit on sex by Osho – you’re making love to my daughter, you read all this. And his response was, sure! I’ll read it. He wanted to read it! He loves to read Osho. I have a strong connection with him. He’s open to Osho and I know that he would probably like to go to Pune and explore that for himself.

TUI: I’m really thankful that I grew up among sannyasin people. All I know about Osho’s teachings is through the actions of the people around me. I haven’t read his books or watched his videos. Sannyasins are open and very accepting. They’re the nicest people that I know

I’d like to go the commune in Pune sometime and explore spiritual evolution and all that stuff. That’s important to me and I hope to work on that in my life. At this point I’m not out there searching for teachings or anything. But who knows what will happen in my life? I’m glad it’s there and that I know about it and have that option.

Sometimes I feel very appreciative of who I have as parents, especially my mum.

SHAHIDO: I feel the same way. I feel so grateful to have her in my life. And I feel that she’s my inspiration. A lot of my inspiration comes from her. It’s very subtle. It’s like I plant the flowers for her to paint. She just inspires me by who she is.

My main attraction with Osho – if you can say such a thing, because it's about the unknown – is that he was the first person who accepted me unconditionally. And that gift has gone throught me to Tui; I’ve accepted her unconditionally.

[For another insight on growing up in the context of sannyas, see Sharno in issue #1]

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