For over 10 years now, people have asked me if I was ever going to get around to writing a book about my experiences of personally knowing and working with Robert A. Monroe.
Whenever the question would come up, I would simply smile and say, “It’s not likely.” You see I have always felt that the subject of Bob was a bit too close up and personal for me to write about publicly.
In the 7 years that we worked together, I had innumerable candid conversations with the man that so many see as a legend.
I felt that these conversations revealed such a great deal of Bob’s humanness that I wondered if I could wholeheartedly tell people of my authentic experiences with this man, while not detracting from the significance and importance of his work and his legendary status.
The legendary Bob wrote books and told fantastic tales of his “out-of-body” adventures.
The legendary Bob sacrificed a significant amount of his time and money in an effort to create, and ultimately perfect, a technology that would allow others to have similar experiences.
The legendary Bob taught us that we are, indeed, so much more than merely our physical bodies.
The Bob I knew was my friend, my mentor and one of my greatest teachers. The Bob I knew was human, and beyond human, in every sense of the word.
It’s been 25 years since I first met Bob Monroe…
Good Lord, the mere fact that I can say that it has been 25 years since I have done anything still gives me the chills. I suppose at this point in my life I have the distinct honor of having become one of those middle-aged people who have a backlog of memories. And yet, there it is.
I truly was a child in so many ways back then, although I was 27 years of age with a wife, a young son, a mortgage and a small recording facility that was mortgaged to the hilt.
It was the spring of 1988, and I had just returned from my very 1st trip abroad with my wife’s family. During our 2 weeks in England, I spent an inordinate amount of time worrying about the money that I was not making while on vacation. My recording studio had been opened for about a year and I had very few clients to help me pay off my debt.
This worry was offset by what I considered to be “the experience of a lifetime”. Not only did I get to visit various parts of England, indulge in warm beer, fish and chips and incessant rain, I also actually got to attend recording sessions at the Abbey Road Studios in Westminster, London. For me, this was as exhilarating as a Muslim visiting Mecca.
Upon our return in late May, I rushed to my studio answering machine, (yes, one of those ancient voice messaging services from the pre-digital world), and pushed play. There were comments and questions from a few of my current clients and perhaps one or two inquiries about my rates and availability.
Amidst the chatter and uncertainty of younger voices leaving messages, one voice stood out. After the beep there was a brief pause until the voice of an older gentleman who obviously hated leaving voice messages simply said “Call Bob Monroe”, left a number and hung up. Figuring that some senior citizen dialed the wrong number, I left the task of calling him back to the following day and attended to my jet lag. It was mid afternoon the next day by the time I got around to calling Bob Monroe. It was a phone call that would change the course of my life forever.
Perhaps a little background is called for here. Although by the time I had received this phone message, I had been involved in a meditation practice for approximately 10 years, I had simply never heard of Bob Monroe, the Monroe Institute, or Hemi-Sync tm. None of these were on my radar when I uprooted my young family to move from Staten Island, New York to Charlottesville, Virginia.
My intention for moving was to simply immerse myself in my career as a composer/producer/recording engineer, and raise my stepson in a beautiful area of the United States. I had had more than my fill of all that The Big Apple had to offer during my younger years, and was looking forward to a simpler life. My objective was to build a recording studio sufficient enough to record demo tapes and eventually work my way to fame and fortune.
Most of my friends and family believed my leaving New York as I had four years earlier, to be counterproductive to my objective. One does not ordinarily leave an “Entertainment Capital” in favor of “John Boy Walton” country, if one really expects to succeed in the industry.
But in the summer of 1984, something inside me told me that moving to Charlottesville was exactly what I needed to do. It just felt right, to both myself, and my then wife. I remember feeling incredibly excited about the prospect, although I knew I had quite a ride ahead of me.
Fortunately, I was a young optimist who believed wholeheartedly in my abilities and the power of positive thinking, which was a by-product of my meditation practice. I believed then, (and most certainly still do believe), that if you train your mind to focus on your goals, root out any negative inner speak that can subconsciously impede your progress, then you truly can accomplish anything!
I felt that my experience of the world, or my “outer reality”, would reflect my thinking, or my “inner reality”. Meditation was one of the tools that gave me this confidence, and the ability to accomplish what was perceived by others as improbable.
I was now four years into this epoch of my journey, and although the road was difficult and unpredictable, I knew I was well on my way toward success. I was creating my own reality.
Fate however, is not without a sense of irony. Sometimes, one simple phone call can change your whole life course. Calling Bob Monroe certainly did for me.