With Friends by Alan Sims


sifumag On August 24th 2017, one of the worst days of my life and the last day of my brother's (Alfred Sims Jr.) took place. Known to most of his friends as "Toby", he was also given a spiritual name by Dhyanyogi Shri Madhusudandsaji, Anantwhich means limitless.
Coming from a musical family and placed in classes for intellectually gifted children, he studied guitar with Mr. Jones, who lived in our neighborhood of St. Albans, Queens.
Our mother's side of the family had what I call big music. My mother herself wasn't a musician, but her older sister aunt Laura Smith had a fine voice. Her younger sister InaMae Martin was a music teacher and a fine keyboard player.
She taught Gladys Knight for a while, but from what my mother told me, they had a falling out. My mother's oldest sister aunt Rhetta Craig had a superb singing voice. My mother told me that an old white dude wanted to take her to Europe to train for opera. My mother whose name was Frances, told us that once aunt Rhetta was visiting us in New York, and attended church one morning. Mom told us that when aunt Rhetta started singing, the whole church turned around. Like I said big music.

My brother's favorite guitarist was Jimi Hendrix. He liked the blues guitarists like Albert King, etc. But Jimi was first. We both knew Fred Walcott a musician from around the way, and he also met well known musicians from the Sri Chinmoy Centre.
He was a fan of both Jimi Hendrix and Bruce Lee, both of whom we're born on November 27th. I had studied Ving Tsun Kung Fu from Lee Moy Shan whose teacher Moy Yat, was a direct and close student of Yip Man. I must have talked about Sifu to Toby because he came to the school, and while I was practicing, he and Sifu were in Sifu's office talking. He basically said later to me that they were talking about being a disciple.

Especially during his later years (I can't type Ananton this phone) Al by which he was sometimes called, was more into his spiritual disciplines, although this was true throughout his life. I just chose to focus on various topics. I want to make a collage of just some of his whom I call "Friends".
He told me of the last time that he saw Sri Chinmoy when he came quite close to him, looked him up and down in a room full of people, and said BA 3 times meaning the equivalent of good in his native language.
According to Sri Chinmoy, upon death, the soul will go through the subtle physical, the vital, the mental, the psychic and finally to the soul's own region. I believe that in another one of his books he states that the fastest that a spiritual master can take a soul from the vital world is 19 days. In Sri Chinmoy's book " The World Beyond" in the chapter "Praying for the departed", he says that "To invoke a soul from the soul's world, both purity and intensity are needed. With purity you go one step, and with intensity you go ten steps." He also states that only the positive side of the person that one is praying for is to be seen. God himself takes our sincere prayers to the souls that we are praying for.
On Friday in Manhattan, I attended a satsang or spiritual meeting during which the Sri Maha Mrutyunjaya mantra was recited quite a few times for my departed brother and for the wellbeing of myself and all of humanity.
His passing hurt me because I thought it was sad and preventable being caused basically from malnutrition and pneumonia. As bad as my situation was he knew that I would always help him whether he would ask me to or not.
contact alan Sims : alansims@gmail.com
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