A Texas native, Mastura attended a workshop with Ibrahim Jaffe when he visited Austin in 1998. Mastura remembers thinking to herself, “This was nice, but I don’t feel inclined to join the school.”
A few nights later, Mastura sat straight up in bed in the middle of the night, and said, “I’m doing this program!” That’s exactly the way Mastura says she receives Divine guidance when it comes: suddenly, strongly, and undeniably.
With complete trust in the guidance that she would be attending the school, she decided to book her plane ticket to California even though her boss had told her she would not be able to take the time away from work. Mastura was responsible for managing an important project on a tight deadline, and the kickoff date for the project overlapped with her first week of school. With her plane to California leaving on Sunday, Mastura went in to work on Friday still believing her boss would want her in the office the following week.
At the last possible minute, her boss let her know that the shipment she would need to get started with her project had been delayed for two weeks! “I’m sorry, I feel badly that I told you not to take next week off, and now plane tickets will be so expensive,” said Mastura’s boss when he delivered the news. Mastura says she just smiled serenely back at her boss, until he exclaimed, “You already bought your tickets, didn’t you?!”
Mastura Debra Graugnard was a fixture at the University for over a decade, starting with her attendance at the Energy Mastery Seminars in 1998 & 1999. She then went to work for the school in 2000. In her nine years as an administrator, she was a part of helping the organization transform into the Jaffe Institute, and later the Sufi University. She left her position in 2009, but stayed with the school for another year as a student, enrolling in the Year 3 program for the 2009-2010 school year.
Now Mastura runs a thriving healing practice called Joyfully Living Wellness. “I’m really passionate about the healing integration of the mind, body and spirit, through Sufi principles put into plain common English.” Her clients are a mixture of people who include seasoned Sufis as well as those who are new to spiritual healing. Mastura has noticed a trend among people who have walked a spiritual path for many years: they are surprised at what a deep process Mastura guides them through when they begin to work with the body.
“Our relationship to our bodies and to food is a huge mirror for our relationship to God,” says Mastura. “If you really want to heal yourself, to put yourself face to face with God, one of the doorways is through your body and through eating.”