Spiritual lifestyle advice and guidance for modern women from bestselling author Alice Grist.
For most of us the concept of death is something we bare with clenched fists and a stomach full of churning denial. When it is visited upon us we dig deep into that denial and find a pit of rage, a chasm of awkward, ugly disbelief, and an ocean of sorrow too deep and abysmal to cross. Death can leave even the hardiest spiritualista feeling wiped out, in doubt and desperately alone.
That said, I don't want this article to focus on the spiral of negativity that can and does so often consume us. Rather I want to redirect our feelings to the gifts that death brings, and indeed the fascinating insights the ending of life can usher forward. More specifically, I want to consider the thought that our life goes on beyond the physical obviousness of death.
All those of a spiritual nature must contemplate, from time to time that there is more to life. You would not be here had you not considered this. Perhaps you have experienced something, be it a ghost, a psychic moment or a connection with a departed loved one that cannot be denied. Perhaps you have hazy memories from a past life, or find yourself called, inexplicably to study and read spiritual books that promote the idea of life going on.
I know that when I started out on my spiritual trip, this was precisely where my head took me. I read books that presented fabulous evidence of life after death, reincarnation and indeed a spiritual life between lives. At this same time my Grandfather died, and with my head already swirling in a mass of fascinating spiritual thought, he gifted me with signs that not only was he still around 'in spirit' but that he had a fairly good sense of humour about his life, his passing, and our continued connection. Years later and my other Grandfather died, the way it happened, whilst shocking to those around him, was filled with so many blessings and hidden gifts. His passing revealed to me that even in the uncertainty and seeming madness of disease, a perfect set of circumstances can accumulate. Tokens of love can be ushered out, when least expected, and life can swing wildly between giving and taking, heartfelt gain and lifealtering loss.
I have previously written about a time when I once had a vision, or a dream or a remembrance (no words truly describe what I experienced) about the state of life. I wrote about it here... In this dreamlike memory I recalled a place before my life as Alice and I woke up in the biggest fit of hysterical hilarity and giggles I ever have had. For me that memory was of a place so familiar, so spectacular, so real. Whilst I was there I was reminded that the earth upon which we parade our lives, our happiness and our woes, is fleeting, it is stage, it isn't quite real. Our life as we know it right now is but a place of learning, and all those things that we invest so much energy and heartfelt thought into, are, essentially, irrelevant.
This isn't to say that all experience here is pointless. Nor is life a bad or good joke. But rather that the things we consume ourselves with, the daft stuff, the worries, the drama, now all of that is truly laughable. It may take death to lighten that load, we may need to lose our bodies so that we can lose the muck in our minds. But I don't believe this has to be the case. I believe we can start to gain a healthier more spiritual perspective now, simply by asking ourselves this, "if I / you / we died tomorrow, would this thought /situation / feeling / argument matter?"
I was recently reading back through my first book The High Heeled Guide to Enlightenment. I undertook several past life regressions as research, and rereading those experiences lit a little fire under my spirit once again. I truly believe in life after death and life between lives. My personal past life regressions clearly showed me experiences in previous lives that had been so full of meaning and lessons, and that I can see reflect still in my life today as Alice Grist. For anyone in doubt about the nature of their forever selves, I highly recommend a past life regression, or if you can't stomach it, feel free to read all about mine here...
Death is still a frightening concept, of course it is. Whilst we are in our human bodies, subject to our intense emotions, we are unlikely to ever deal well with death. Nor would we want to. We are here to run the gamut of ups and downs and to feel everything that this life presents us with. However it is possible to feel the horror and sadness of death, and yet still believe it is not the end. We can embrace death as much as we revile it. We can choose to learn from it and grow from it and glow in the light which it sheds upon our lives.
Death is never without meaning. For every loved one we lose, something is gained, something is gifted from their spirit to ours. For those losses we can cry, we can sob, we can weep. But when the tears settle and the memories flood us and we smell Nana's perfume, or we hear her voice in our mind, or we find a little note she wrote us, or we are gifted with the inspiration to do as she did, to love or live or find compassion as she did, then her life continues within us, and I am sure her spirit continues alongside us also in some energetic, etheric form, stroking our energy, holding us, laughing with us, at us, within us.
Living life in denial of death is a life insufficiently lived. If we embrace that concept then we can get the best out of our current existence. If we take this further, and look to an idea of life going on beyond death, then we get not only comfort, but insight. If we look for the signs of this insight in the world around us, in little miracles and within our own hearts, then we become wise as we move within the mysterious circle of living.
Death is but a stepping stone to truth. The truth of human life, truth of our higher self, truth of the eternal and forever nature of the soul of the cosmos and of Mother Nature. This truth will twist and turn along with our adventures and our moods. We will accept it, deny it, embrace it and loathe it throughout our existence. Yet the truth of it, the acknowledgement of it as a certainty, a distinct possibility, a likelihood, an inevitable is empowering in ways unfathomable.
Published as part of Alice's March 2014 Newsletter, sign up for regular spiritual articles, resources and insight here...
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