Sambodhi Left Her Body


Like she lived, Sambodhi left her body on her own terms on 5th June 2011

Sambodhi left her body on June 5, 2011 in Portland, Oregon, U.S.A. Many will remember her from Pune One and our commune days in Rajneeshpuram, where she was often posted in Antelope and the Hotel Rajneesh in Portland. She was 72 years old. Sambodhi had this letter sent to me:

A farewell letter seemed like a good way to let you know that I left my body on June 5, 2011.  (I got the idea from a friend.)  It’s also my way to share the following quote with you.  I read it somewhere and immediately knew its truth:

It’s the people we meet along the way
that help us appreciate the journey.

I lived a good, full life, while on Earth, and want to thank you for accompanying me on my journey.

A gathering will be scheduled for those who wish to attend a celebration of my life.  For information about this gathering, please contact Anne Rutherford at

As ever,

Susan aka Sambodhi

P.S.  Please continue spreading the word about my book – A Surprise Life:  The Spiritual Journey of A Girl From Brooklyn by Susan M. Clare

It was through this book that I reconnected with Sambodhi last year, as I had tremendously enjoyed reading it. Read the review here…

Sambodhi’s friend Anne added some details about her passing:

“About three months ago, Susan’s condition officially converted to leukemia, requiring more frequent treatment and transfusions. She decided to stop driving, as she was on more pain medication. Still, with the support of friend, she was able to get out to the grocery store (for local organic produce, of course), visits, and maintain an independent life.

About three weeks ago, her white count elevated, and she began to enter into what felt like a final stage. As Susan herself put it to me the week before Memorial Day, “I’m on my way out.” She continued to be Susan, in contact with people and living her life.

Last week she decided to start a new chemotherapy treatment that would be fairly intense and invasive with the aim of extending her life. That treatment was to begin on Monday June 6. On Sunday June 5, with the help of Diane, a close friend here, Susan was able to go to a concert of Aurora Chorus, the Portland chorus in which she sang for many years. Susan was in a wheelchair at that point, but luminous is the only way to describe her. The concert included several pieces by Mary Oliver and Wendell Berry, speaking of life, death and transformation, which moved Susan deeply. After the concert she connected with many folks in the lobby.

Diane took Susan home from the concert Sunday night, and left her in good spirits. When GG another friend, arrived Monday morning to take Susan up to OHSU to begin the chemotherapy treatment, she found Susan’s body on the couch. Her spirit had departed sometime during the night.

While all of us wish we had her with us physically for longer, it also feels like grace that Susan was able to live her life on her own terms until the very end.

My very best regards to you,


You can leave a message / tribute / anecdote here…

Beautiful – thank you for sharing about Sambodhi’s leaving. I remember her well from Poona 1 – always such an authentic soul, and as I remember she had a brace on her lower leg so had obviously had many challenges to face. I’m happy she left after a beautiful concert… way to go! And I’ll be interested to read her book. Love and blessings, Sambodhi, dear fellow traveller.
Anupam 🙂

Thank you for sharing, Svarupa. How beautiful her farewell letter, it seems she shared her radiant spirit ’till the very end ♥

Love you, Sambodhi.

So long Sambodhi. You are on your journey…. Love,

Sweet Sambodhi, I remember you very well from Pune, beautiful powerwoman, all the best and loads of Blessings for your onward journey!

Dear Sambodhi, you are a model of courage, persistence, simplicity, grace, and humility. We will think of you as you continue the journey onward. Fly, fly high … with much love,
Hina and Bhasa Bear

Sambodhi Love! A delight to see your face, our laughs and hugs working together… Yhank you for being you xoxo

I remember Sambodhi always sharing her presence while not aiming to do so … just being herself, so smoothly, so friendly. We made cappuccinos together in the restaurant, always having fun trying to make the best foam possible. She was such an uplifting, earthly and floating energy … true, deeply true. Sending love on a happy flight. Bye Sam, thanks for your friendship.

Good bye Sambodhi. And so the journey continues. May love, light, and laughter accompany you. Love to you,

Farewell, my dear pal Sambodhi. I wish you good company on your trails on the other side. I enjoyed our time together at the Portland Hotel. Much love to you,

Love you Sambodhi. Loved you then, love you now

There was always sweetness within and around her. She is lovely.

Loved you Sambodhi, love you.

So glad she was able to leave on her own terms. She was always an inspiration – a woman of great courage, fortitude and compassionate heart. I am glad I knew her. If you haven’t done already – read her book!
Persephone Arbour (Veet Asmi)

Beloved Sambodhi, Your sweet and feisty soul and your radiant smile will be missed. Your courageous choices in the last months are inspiring. Wishing you well on your new adventure. With love,

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