Tea and coffee from the Bishop1

During my recent visit to Iceland, I met with the Bishop of the Lutheran Church. His name is Bishop Petur Sigurgeirsson. This Bishop was so nice. From the beginning to the end, he showed me such affection. Our interview lasted for over an hour.

At first he said he wanted a private interview and nobody could accompany me. But then he changed his mind and invited all the disciples to come in.

He was begging everyone to drink tea or coffee and to eat the bread and cheese that he had provided. It was like a family gathering.

He could not understand why I do not drink tea or coffee, so I had to give a long explanation. Then, when he heard that I am a vegetarian, he had a volley of questions.

He knew all about prayer but he had no idea what meditation is. He could not imagine how anybody could meditate without thought. So we had a long discussion about prayer and meditation.

I told him that when I was in India, I used to meditate for six or seven hours at a time. He believed what I told him, but he said that it was impossible for him to keep his own mind quiet for more than a few minutes.

At the end, we meditated for a minute or two and prayed with our heads down. Then he stood up and said, "You know, I am eighty-six years old!" Then he placed his hands on my shoulders and pressed down on them with utmost affection. He was so sweet, so kind and so full of affection, love and wisdom.


  1. TCE 20. 19 March 1988