Muhammad Ali and My First Satori

Muhammad Ali and My First Satori

I was at the Muhammad Ali vs. Earnie Shavers Heavyweight fight in Madison Square Garden, September 29, 1977. 

A Media Buyer colleague at the Doyle Dane Bernbach Advertising Agency passed me two tickets for the match. (Staffers in her department were "sampled" regularly by media reps.) I'm not exactly a fight fan, but the free $100 tickets said this was something valuable ... not to be missed. Me and my then wife went.

It was a transcendent experience. The fight was very close. But in the remaining seconds of the 15th round — as I remember how I saw it — Ali had Shavers up on the ropes; and, from where I was watching, seemed to be raining down God's wrath, blow after blow after blow. Our seats were in the first raised area surrounding the ring. I saw the action during those last moments from behind and to the right of Ali.

The crowd was on it's feet chanting Ali! Ali! Ali! Ali! Ali! Ali! Ali!

From my vantage everything disappeared except for the hot white square box of light over the ring. And, Ali pummeling Shavers, raining blow after blow. 

Even the sound of the crowd became faint to my ears. Everything became very quiet, the action went into slow motion. My then wife at the time was taken up with the frenzy; screaming, "Kill him! Kill him!" (She didn't actually want that, just a figure of speech.) 

For me it may have been my first Satori. A testament to the power of chanting the name of God. 

RIP Muhammad Ali. June 3, 2016. In gratitude for your blessing, your life a blessing.

Pick up my memorable last seconds of round 15 at 1:09:00.

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