Friday, November 29, 2013

death as an adviser...

"Death will come for each of us and yet, with our realignments of time, we have an opportunity to have death move into a different position: death is now just behind our left shoulder. The reality is unchanged, but death now becomes an adviser." Francis Rico

I talked to my cousin on the phone yesterday. Two months ago I wrote "the crossroad..." about a choice she was given: to die within days or take "brutal chemo" treatments which had few guarantees.  She asked what I would do. Neither of us knew the answer. She is now home from the hospital although she still has to take the chemo once a month if she wishes to live.

Although much thinner, her voice is hers -- strong, inquiring with a humor that simmers but not quite fruits. I asked how she is, "I'm great. I am loving today and I am not dying right now. Besides, I want to enjoy my house. (She just had it renovated.)The way she said it was as if this one day was golden, glorious and glittering. Mine felt rather ordinary in comparison.  She continues to tell me of the meaningful conversations that are happening with family and friends who come from across the country. Hanging up I hear, "I love you."

Times gives us "an opportunity to have death move into a different position" -- to allow it to become an adviser -- time to adjust one's life, out look, loving and caring beyond self. I don't want to find that different mole or lump no matter how wise death is. I'd need time to "re position", to allow myself space to grieve what will be lost on "this side" and ponder what awaits on "the other". I know that death is not an ending but another beginning, an act of love, an act of birthing into a larger consciousness.

I  also do not need to have an illness to walk with this great adviser. Experience and age rest it neatly on my left shoulder, now. An ancient friend from the "other side" once told me, "'Death' is not the word we use..." I asked why and she replied, "As it is merely passing from one life experience to another life experience."  And when she pointed her finger at me, somehow I knew it was true.

So like my cousin I trust death will illuminate with light, change mountains into molehills
and teach me again that the moment is precious. I have a choice of response right here, right now -- a major act of power.* I don't have to wait. Maybe on posting this writing, I will invite this wing creature who will take me into a larger awareness to rest softly on my left shoulder. Then as my cousin would say, "You, look and listen..."

my cousin on the right this past week-end
* Rico
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Friday, November 15, 2013


“The geranium just died on the window sill but teacher you went right on talking.”
Albert Cullum

A little geranium here in the corner has not been watered for days. The flower is dried crisp. I had not noticed. How many times have I just gone “right on" typing?  My grand children want to watch a  program, so easy to let them while I "catch a few moments for myself." A senior down the street is lonely, I say “good morning” and keep on walking.  I read in the paper last week, a woman in Pakistan, had gone to the police station to report being raped by her brother-in-law and was pregnant.  She was sentenced to death by stoning. I have done nothing.

I consider myself sensitive, informed, and spiritual yet I have not written an email to the Pakistani government, stopped and talked to the senior or watered the geranium. I get spun off so easily by everyday-ness and too busy meeting my own personal deadlines. I console myself with cliches. In my busy day, “I can’t do everything or help everybody.” All trite but true. Even good posture like  holding my shoulders back, my stomach in are lucky to get any attention at all.  And they are right below my chin.

I get too thin in spirit, swim in a pool too shallow for resonance, presence, or thoughtfulness. Am I cold-hearted, selfish, or is it just I can’t be bothered?  Is it a momentary forgetfulness of who I really am, my soul-self, my relating self? Are these its choices?

I pause, letting my eyes drift slowly across this mahogany desk to the green curled leaves of the geranium being played by the breeze coming through the screen door. I wrote not long ago about Masuro Emoto's photographs that witness to how water responds to emotion or neglect. I would speculate it is the same for plants. I remember the worn face on the senior (and I am one). How different it begins to feel. Now the hand holding this pen, is coming to life. Relatedness begins to stir.

Everything thing resonates and beats the same heart. The dried flower is me when I stay in my busyness, when I keep "right on talking/typing" instead of watering. So I begin again, the geranium is watered, the justice email is sent and maybe tomorrow on my walk, I'll take more time than saying a "hello" in passing.

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Saturday, November 2, 2013

the little dog with a golden tail...

"Be thou comforted, little dog, Thou too in resurrection shall have a golden tail." Martin Luther

My friend just lost a love, her dog Marley. Love is love, lost is lost in whatever form it takes, often wounding us deeply.

She dropped in for a visit several weeks ago. Feeling grief, she was telling me what a vacant hole his presence leaves in her life. They walked the beaches, the woods, and went to choir practice. A fun loving companion: he consoled her when down, licked her hand when necessary. Now he felt gone and leaves her desolate for his companionship. She tells me people don't get it. They think because Marley was a dog she "shouldn't" grieve to any uncomfortable extent. Ah, but love is love.

As I listened, in my minds eye, clear, almost solid, a little dog was wagging it's tail till it blurred. I seemed to be just in front and above his head.  I am familiar with my invisible guides so know reality does not have to be visible to be real. This little dog did not appear to be grieving or absent.

The next time my friend visited there he was again but this time sitting down: perky, happy, patient and waiting? She had gone to a beach where they had often visited, a few days before. Wanting a sign from him, her attention was drawn to a spot on the sand. Stopping her story she took a kleenex-wrapped object from her purse. Tenderly unwrapping it, her hands cradled a rock about two inches wide and shaped, undeniably like a heart.

A journey of love.  I find that those strong spiritual energies that beacon us want to be clothed, want to serve, want to be in-form so they can inform, so they can love -- with the wisdom of the ancients, the enlightened ones, the shamans, and the quantum physicists. Even the gods desire a language.

We need to allow their spirit language side by side with our human language. We need to learn to hear it and speak it. The universe is too large, too rich, too multi-dimensional for merely one voice, ours and one language, ours. The invitation is out. Will my friend learn a new language? Will she allow her beloved companion his invisible form, his golden tail or will his presence be dismissed?

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