I was born in The Year of The Golden Dragon. As soon as I was old
enough to walk, my grandmother started taking me to The Museum of
Fine Arts. She said I always made a beeline to the Asian section
and then I never wanted to leave. At age eleven, I painted all my
furniture black with red and green Chinese dragons all over!
guess I always wanted to be a Crusader. This
is me at age 12 or 13, on my horse, after riding in the 4th of July
Parade, in New Boston New Hamphire:
a young woman, I studied Fine Art, Design, Graphics and Calligraphy,
at The Museum of Fine Arts College, and at The Massachusetts Institute
of Fine Art. Then I became an Interior Designer & Color Consultant
for a major commercial Interior Design company in Boston.
1966, I moved to California. I was soon initiated into Transcendental
Meditation, Jo Rei, Reiki and Hawaiian Huna. In 1968, I was one
of twenty people that lived all summer with Baba Ram Dass (AKA,
Dr. Richard Allpert) at his home in New Hampshire. There, I practiced
Meditation, Yoga, Fasting, Silence, T'ai Chi and Sufi Dancing. That
winter, I moved to New Mexico to raise my daughter, do my art, ride
my five horses, pursue esoteric spiritual studies and to deepen
my study of Sufism at Lama Foundation. In 1972, I returned to California
to study Sufism with Murshid "Sufi Sam" Lewis and Murshid
Veda Rama, 1972
also studied Jewish Mysticism with Rabbi Zalman Schachter; Zen with
Alan Watts; Vipassana Meditation with Joseph Goldstein and Jack
Kornfield; and Shamanic Taoism with Yogi C.M. Chen:
Ramdassi & Yogi Chen, Belvedere CA,
1973, I Founded the Santa Cruz Branch of the Sufi Order International.
I conducted weekly Universal Worship Services, Sufi Dancing, Sufi
Seminars and community events. Pir Vilayat
Inayat Khan, head of the Sufi Order International ordained me, Cheraga
(Minister). IN MEMORY OF PIR VILAYAT INAYAT KHAN 1916-2004:
Vilayat Inayat Khan & Qibla Veda Rama, Chamonix France 1972
was also leading seminars on, Tantra, Tarot, Astrological Yoga and
"Beyond Astrology". I did advanced work in EST, Actualizations,
Silva Mind Control, Sedona Method, Rebirthing, and Lifespring.
While reading Edgar Cayce, Swami Yogananda and Carlos
Castanada, so many of the miracles they wrote about were being duplicated
in my life that I coined my motto, "A miracle a day keeps the
--A True Story from 1976
Even after a decade of associations with the Hindu tradition, I'd
never heard the word 'Ahimsa', until Yogi Chen asked me to do the
calligraphy for a book, a collection of Chinese poems he'd just
finished translating, called Ahimsa. The poems were all about the
virtues vegetarianism and harmlessness. In Sanskrit, the philosophy
of "No Harm" is called, "Ahimsa".
decided to design an original calligraphic font with an oriental
flair for this special assignment. Upon that decision, the Ahimsa
book suddenly became a major project. At first I was feeling overwhelmed
by the number of hours it was taking. But, my apprehension soon
dissipated as I noticed I was being profoundly transformed by the
concentration. Then I realized that this project was more than just
another calligraphy job. It was a privilege, an honor and a gift
bestowed upon me by Yogi Chen.
when it came time to deliver the poems, I wanted to acknowledge
my appreciation by giving Yogi Chen something extra, something special,
along with my calligraphy. It wasn't easy to imagine what to give
to a Taoist monk, who needs absolutely nothing. After a few meditations
on the question, I got the inspiration to wrap the calligraphy in
my meditation shawl, a beautiful large scarf from India, printed
with red Buddhist symbols, on yellow silk. Having served for so
many years as a meditation shawl, it was filled with Baraka (spiritual
energy), so what could be better?
Yogi Chen seemed very pleased with both the calligraphy and the
scarf. He made us tea and then got out his Chinese Almanac and looked
up my astrology. Yogi Chen told me I was born in the year, month,
week, day and hour of the Golden Dragon King. I asked him what that
meant and he replied that, "It means you have power to move
the multitudes." [Oh my!]
On the long drive home, I kept contemplating how I could fulfill
such a destiny. But, since no answers came rushing in to answer
the question, I turned my attention toward noticing that, although
I was deeply pleased about having given Yogi Chen my meditation
shawl, I was also aware that there was now a 'hole' in my life which
needed to be filled. That precious old scarf was so permeated with
Baraka I was wondering how I could ever adequately replace it. You
just can't buy such a thing at the mall.
minutes of arriving back home, my Sufi friend, Sherdyl, dropped
by for a spontaneous visit, and to bring me a present, "For
no special occasion", he said. Imagine my amazement and delight
when he handed me a magnificent, huge, gorgeous, Indian meditation
Only then did I tell him about my gift to Yogi Chen and how I'd
just been wondering how I could replace my wonderful old shawl.
Sherdyl's gift, being so perfect and timely, was obviously divinely
inspired. We laughed together, rejoicing in the mystery of miraclous
Later that evening, I had a lovely meditation, wrapped in my wonderful
new shawl. When I opened my eyes, I began admiring the beautiful
gift, the delicate silk embroidery and the fine texture of the white
wool. Then, I turned over a corner of the fabric and, to my utter
amazement, saw this label:
Even though it was already nine PM, I called Yogi Chen. I couldn't
wait to ask him how such a miracle could possibly happen. He said,
"God did it." I said "Yes, but, how could this happen?"
He said, "God did it." I said, "Yes, I know, but,
how did it happen?" He said, "God did it."
said, okay. Thank you.
life continues to be filled with spectacular synchronicities, all
of which are *miracles* to me.
Master Da Liu was my first T'ai teacher, in 1968.
In 1978, I was certified to teach T'ai Chi Chih, by Master Justin
continued my study with Master Chungliang Al Huang. In 1985, I traveled
with Chungliang to The People's Republic of China, to deepen my
experience with T'ai Qi, T'ai Ji, Qi Gong, Feng Shui, Chinese Culture
and Chinese Philosophy. At Lanting Institute, I was awarded the
Certificate of Accomplishment for Intensive Chinese Study.
taught T'ai Qi, T'ai Ji, T'ai Chi Chih and Qi Gong classes and seminars
for more than twenty years.
Qi in Sedoan AZ, 1992
the early eighties, I focused on Hinduism
with Sri Dhyanyogi Madhusudandasji, who named me "Ramdassi
~ Servant of God".
in 1986, I studied Tibetan Buddhism, for nearly a decade, with Lama
Lobsang Geshe Gyatso Rinpoche. He said we were brother and sister
in our last life:
Lopsang Geshe Gyatso Rinpoche & Veda Ramdassi, Nevada City,
the ninties, I became a Radical Breatherapy Practitioner, a Motherwavework
Senior Practitioner, an Emotional Freedom Technique Practitioner,
and well versed in several other personal growth trainings.
1994, Jack Canfield certified me as a Self Esteem Facilitator.
traveled through China, Japan, India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, France,
England and all over the U.S. to be with venerable Masters and to
explore the Qi (bio-life-force-vitality) and geomancy in ley lines,
vortices, lava caves, labyrinths, European cathedrals, Asian temples,
sacred circles and circle dances.
Rimpoche, Veda Ramdassi & Monks, Vajrapani, Nepal, 1982
The first popular book on Feng Shui, in English,
was published in 1987; but a decade before that, in the seventies,
my business, "Interior Castle ~ Metaphysical Interior Design,"
specialized in balancing and harmonizing environments, using principles
of esoteric geometry, Qi, color, light and metaphysical methods,
to enhance the well being of the inhabitants: i.e., Feng Shui! In
the eighties I studied the new wave of Feng Shui in America with
many renowned Masters, including Black Sect Tantric Buddhism Master,
Professor Lin Yun. For more details, please visit the Feng Shui
page of this website.
At an ancient Taoist temple in China, I had a strong
deja vu experience: I could describe what was around every corner,
I knew where everything was! -- I went by my middle name for twenty
years. During that time, I signed my name simply, M. Yates. But,
as an ordained Sufi Cheraga and with my Doctor of Divinity, I could
have legally signed it, Reverend M. Yates. Coincidentally [?] the
first acclaimed authority on Feng Shui, in the Western world, was
the Reverend M. Yates. He kept a detailed Feng Shui Journal while
doing missionary work in China... In 1868.
asked how long I've been doing Feng Shui, I'm inclined to say, "A
very long time... in this lifetime."
Feng Shui & Transformational Counseling
is the synthesis and the fruition of my life's [or lifetimes']
I teach Workshops, Seminars, Private Classes, and do Public Speaking
on many topics:
• Dowsing for Wisdom & Knowledge
How to Eliminate Clutter with Feng Shui & Dowsing
The Magic of Noh Form T'ai Qi (a synthesis of all the Qi
Forms I've studied).
The Joy of Laughing --How and Why To Laugh, Even Though and
Especially If "It's No Laughing Matter".
(The Center for Spiritual Living christened me, "Minister of
I also have a richly rewarding, spiritually satisfying, entrepreneurial
home based business. Please call me if you'd like to learn about
why I think it is one of the hottest, right livelihood, opportunities
on the planet: 707.573.1133
Gayla's Travel Photos: India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, China, Japan