One moment, outside of time, and my life changed forever. No apparent cause for the experience. There was just a direct realization that I was not my body or my mind. Who I truly was had never been born and would never die. Since that time, thirty-three years ago, this intuitive understanding has never left my consciousness.
Life as I had known it fell apart. I could not eat, I cried continuously, and my body shook for days on end. I thought I was going to die. Every unskillful action I had committed in my life came to the fore of my mind along with the compulsion to make amends.
I was never a religious person, but this experience had me thinking that perhaps I had heard the voice of God. I began a search to find out what had actually occurred to so drastically change my perspective on life. I visited with spiritual leaders from many of the world’s religious traditions: Judaism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sufism, Shamanism, and Buddhism.
There were no answers until I met Bhante Gunaratana, a Buddhist monk from the Theravada Buddhist tradition. He told me that the reason I was not finding the answers to my quest was because I was looking in the wrong direction. He said that the answers did not lie in books, no matter how holy they were purported to be, nor could they be provided by teachers, since they would only be reflecting their own inner experiences. What Bhante could provide, however, were instructions for accessing the answers that lie within my own heart. Thus began my experience with meditation.
Over the years I have studied with numerous teachers and have practiced meditation techniques, contemplations, and spiritual disciplines associated with many spiritual paths. What I discovered was that at the core of all religions and spiritual paths, there is only one unifying truth: one Ultimate Reality that unites us all. In 2006, I awoke with the idea of creating a documentary to bring this life-affirming message of hope to the world. After two and one-half years of interviewing renowned mystics from the world’s great sacred traditions, this vision has come to fruition with the production of With One Voice.