Create the Life You Imagine ~ December 2019
The Three Triangle Model: Mystery Meets Matter
“Energy cannot be created or destroyed, it can only be changed from one form to another.”
~ Albert Einstein
At this time of year, as we gather with family and friends to celebrate the sacred season of Christmas, for many it can be a time of sadness or grief as we remember those who are no longer with us. Our family had to say goodbye to my brother Mike just over twenty years ago during Christmas week, and to my mother and father in the years since, and missing their physical presence is always a palpable part of our family gatherings. So I know the ways that death feels like an ending and a painful interruption of our relationship with people we love, and I know the pain, grief, sadness and sorrow that goes with letting go. But if we use our higher awareness to remember that we are more invisible energy than we are physical form, it can seismically shift our consciousness about death.
One of the great spiritual challenges of this time is to change our mind about death. We lose too much energy and too much life worrying about death—whether it’s our own or those we love. When you remember that your body is just a physical vehicle that lives inside your Soul and that flows out from the Source of All That Is, then you remember that we are all eternal streams of energy and the death of the body is just a transformation of that energy from one form to the next. The deeper truth of our being is that there is no death, just transformation into different forms. If you think about yourself as an infant and then as a toddler, where has the infant gone? As you grow into a teen, where has the toddler gone? As you grow into adulthood, where has the teen gone? And as you grow into old age and ready yourself to leave this planet, where has the young adult gone? From the time of our physical conception we are in a constant process of change and transformation, and when we leave this body behind we are simply continuing the process. I have spoken about this three triangle model as a means to remember the Mystery that we are all participating in every minute and with every breath of our lives. That Mystery is bigger than our human consciousness can grasp and beyond our full capacity to understand while we are in this human form, but we can use our inner awareness and our spiritual imagination to let the reality of our true identity start to penetrate our everyday consciousness.
In my book, The Land Beyond Forever, I described the experience of my sisters and I as we had to let go first of our brother and then of our mother as they died of cancer. When our brother Mike went into a septic coma at the age of 38 on Christmas Eve in 1998, it was such a shock to our family and we were terrified of death and the seeming ending that it would bring to such a bright and brilliant light in our family. As our family gathered around him in his hospital bed three days later and the life support systems were being shut off, none of us were even breathing until my mom looked at Kate and said, “sing Katie.” Kate’s singing was a staple of all our family rituals, and we were all desperate for something to soften the sorrow and fear we were all experiencing in that moment. Despite her own fear, Kate sang for Mike and for us all. She chose the song, The Great Reunion Day, and with great love and her angelic voice invited Mike to go on ahead and “fly into the arms of love.” On the wings of her voice we watched his body relax as he took his last breath and left his body. What was palpable to me in that moment was not the experience of his death, but rather, of his leaving. In the moment before he took his last breath we could feel his energy in his body and were touching him and holding him close. In the minute after his last breath, we all left the room, no longer pulled to draw close because you could feel he was no longer in this body which had been left behind like an old coat.
Four years later, after a roller coaster 15-month journey with cancer, my sisters and I were called to gather around another bedside as we prepared to say goodbye to our mother. Our mother was an incredibly bright light. I sometimes say that if you put all three of us together you had our mom. She was passionate about life and fierce in her encouragement to all that she touched about living fully and joyfully into our highest possibilities. Gratefully, in the time between Mike’s death and our Mom’s, we had all grown in our spiritual awareness, and as difficult as it was to let go of this amazing light of a woman, we were better prepared for the process. We prayed with her all day and as the night came and death drew closer, we circled around her as we had with Mike. This time Kate sang to her with love and not fear, and we held her close as she made that sacred transition out of her body and across that threshold into the invisible world. Just before she took her last breath, she looked up and broke into a radiant smile that penetrated the room, our hearts and our grief. It appeared that she had gotten a glimpse of the next leg of her journey, and the joy and astonishment on her face lingered in the room after she left. The sorrow of her leaving was softened by our emerging understanding of death as a transition rather than an ending. Through her life, through her illness and through her death, she taught us with tremendous clarity that the promise of resurrection is a Mystery in which we all participate.
As we grow in our spiritual awareness, we must face what Carl Jung said was the decisive question for every human being: