I spent my childhood in the Australian countryside - I was always surrounded by gardens and animals. I was very happy until I was about 12. My mother used to say that I was a perfect child until I went to high school and then I turned into a monster. From then on I just wasn't really happy. I was searching for love but I didn't realise that then. I left home when I was 16 and went to live in Sydney with some friends who were into dope, and pretty soon so was I.
I used to work as a psychiatric nurse. Doing this you learn to analyse peoples' minds, and I started to analyse mine and thought that I was going crazy. So I used to go to a psychiatrist who used to listen to me talking and gave me some pills to calm me down, but wasn't able to do anything for me.
I ended up leaving Sydney and hitching to Adelaide, the capital of South Australia. I was there for a while and then at the end of 1972 I got a letter from a friend of mine in Sydney which really blew me out. He told me that he'd been going to Satsang and that although he hadn't received this Knowledge yet (there was no Mahatma in Australia at that time) he just knew that this was what he'd been looking for all his life. I couldn't really understand what he was talking about, but the next thing I knew I was on my way back to Sydney. I went to Satsang as soon as I got back to Sydney and it was really incredible. I didn't even have to think - Yes, I know this is it - because it was so obvious, it just felt completely right, completely natural that I should be coming to Satsang every night and waiting, waiting, waiting for Knowledge.
At that time there was no Mahatma in Australia, and we were all just waiting for Guru Maharaj Ji to send us one. There were so many people waiting, and we'd been waiting for so long, that it was decided to let us live in ashrams if we really wanted to. So I moved into one of the ashrams and became the housemother. I really loved being housemother and looking after everyone.
Then one morning in June I was driving a sister from the ashram to work, on the way to the markets to do the food co-op. It was raining and a car coming the other way skidded and crashed into our car. I was thrown 200 yards up the road and landed on my head. I was unconscious for 3 months. It was incredible Grace that I lived. The doctors said that I had only a very small chance, and my uncle, who is a brain specialist, said that he'd never seen anyone with such bad injuries who lived and recovered the way I have.
While I was unconscious, Mahatma Padarthanand Ji arrived in Australia (On the first day of Guru Puja) and when I started to come out of the coma he came to see me. I was just lying there and when he came in it was like I just came to life and woke up - it was incredible. I started laughing and laughing and I called all the doctors and nurses round my bed and sang them a song we sing in Satsang - "There's a Light inside that's shining, brighter than you've ever seen". Because I'd seen that Light I could remember it. Mahatma Ji said that while I was in hospital, Guru Mahood .11 gave me new life,
I was in hospital for 5 months, and when I came out last October I was allowed to go back and live in an ashram, which made me so happy. Whenever Mahatma Ji was in Sydney I would ask him to give me Knowledge, and he would say, "Very soon, but wait till you're a bit stronger". I never had any doubts about Guru Maharaj Ji, but there was very little servi I could do as I still couldn't coordinate my legs and arms and things properly, and couldn't walk by mysel or anything.
Finally Mahatma Ji said yes, he would give me Knowledge, and so on the 15th December he revealed it to me, all by myself.
I'd been waiting so long and now it's just so perfect to have this Knowledge because even though my physical body is a long way from being better, I can really experience that perfect peace within me and know that that's who I really am.
BHOLE SHRI SATGURUDEV MAHARAJ KI JAI! Peta Herbert - 20 years.