Saturday, April 07, 2007

27. The Yin and Yang of Life After Death

Only days after posting that dark blog, I went to dinner with Dee. It was as if the universe, in its infinite wisdom and glee, licked its lips, rubbed its palms together and said, “Now, let’s hit her with the yang to her yin. Let’s see how she feels about that.”

How to explain Dee. I’m not sure why I was drawn to her (or her to me). At the time, we worked together, and I could sense tremendous untapped power in her. Not the sort of egotistical gluttony that drives the worst of politicians. Nor the self-absorbed power of a femme fatale. I’m talking about a presence and substance. Something not physical.

Blonde, Nordic, solidly built, Great Plains-born and bred, she was button-down bright. Yet she trembled with fear that she might do something to endanger her salvation. (Some part of me was certain this would not be the case.) She was – and is – a committed student of the Bible.

Over the years, as we spent time together, the strangest thing would happen. Our conversations would invariably turn to spiritual topics, and we would dialogue in such a way that each provided the other with spiritual balm. I can hardly even characterize these conversations. For me, words would just spill out of my mouth, without thinking, from places I couldn't readily source. And from her, I sensed this uplifting radiance, this unfolding expansiveness. It was comforting to be a moth drawn to her flame.

So days after posting that dark blog, Dee and I got together.

We each, as it turned out, had something special to share. She wanted to tell me about something that had recently happened to her, and I wanted to broach the topic of winking on before winking out. I was a little afraid that she might begin to proselytize. Try as I might, I have never been able to embrace the born-again concept. As I told her, I was “born again” at 10 or 12, walked to the front of the church, dropped to my knees and accepted communion. Nothing happened. I’ve spent a lifetime since, seeking the truth about human existence, corporeal and spiritual.

Dee shared first. She began to tell me about her experiences with Margaret, someone she had never spoken of before. I don’t want to trivialize what came next. Dee explained to me how Margaret was her spirit guide, a presence she had experienced since childhood, who manifest as Western Indian in appearance. In her most recent encounter, Dee explained, Margaret had taken her through a spiritual initiation ceremony. I was quite familiar with this in the context of more alternative approaches to spirituality. I never, ever expected to hear of such a thing from my dear friend.

To listen to Dee, who had initially been fearful for her salvation, speak of an experience that can only be described as transcendent, was remarkable. I said to her, “You cannot imagine the appropriateness of your telling me this just now.”

Then I shared with her much of what I wrote in the previous post. She offered no fear, no recrimination, no push to make me be like her. Just openness, acceptance and love.

This is the sort of thing that holds me ‘twixt and ‘tween. Can this have been a coincidence? I did not have a clue Dee had ever had any such experiences. I had no clue that she had a spirit guide. I would never have even raised the topics of spirit guides or initiations with her because they fly so far afield from traditional Christianity. So it’s not like I elicited this, or planted some suggestion, or provoked it. And, she doesn't read the blog.

Yet, it's the sort of maddening thing that happened often immediately after Gregory’s death. Tantalizing, maybe-spiritual messages. Coincidence upon coincidence. Are they just the magical thinking/interpretation of finite creatures?

Dee would say now that she and I entered into a contract before birth to do something specifically together – learn a lesson, perform a service – in this lifetime.

I cannot say this is wrong. Or correct. The stone-cold, sober truth is that we shall only know the truth of all of this upon the event of our own death. Or, perhaps we shall enter eternal slumber and not know at all.

Images by Vladimir Kush


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