by Robert Wilkinson
Death has again unexpectedly intruded in my life. An ex just died last night. Though we have not seen each other for many years, we had no animus toward each other, and spoke off and on for years after the initial cooling period. Now she's gone, like so many others I've known during my time in this acutely impermanent reality called human life. This has raised some profound feelings in me about our mortality and choices.
Anyone who dares to love will experience many relationships, some closer than others. Through our relationships we find out what we like and what we don't, what does and does not work for us, and what we should and should not do, Some relationships seem more "fated," some less, but all relationships help us fulfill conscious and unconscious needs and desires, whether good or bad.
We start with great intentions, and through the twists and turns of experiences wind up after a time with complex feelings. When these mesh between two people, we find happiness. When they don't, we find friction. Which of these dominate determines if we will stay together, and for how long.
We don't have to be in constant contact or living with someone to feel deeply about the death of one we once knew and had strong feelings about. I have found that for just about everyone, dormant feelings and memories can occasionally echo for years after the direct dance with the one we loved. And when a loved one dies, deep feelings come up. Not necessarily longing for what was or never was, but deep feelings about one's own mortality and choices.
It's a great time for reflecting on then and now and all that has happened in between those points in our life experience. I have been reminded of many other friends who have died since we were together, as well as living friends we once shared many years ago. I've already contacted a few, since they too would want to know that an old friend has passed from this Earth.
She was an important part of my life story, and helped me become a better man for the experience. Though years ago we shared a full range of feelings, for good and bad, ultimately I wound up (as a result of consistent positive intention) feeling compassion for her colored by a detached indifference since we had both moved on and become different beings than we were when married.
I've always tried to find Truth in all experiences, both pleasurable and painful. After a period of time with her and without her, I was shown a deep constant of our human experience.
We dance with strangers, we live with strangers, we hope with strangers, we love strangers. Even when we think we "know" each other, there is an iceberg that is submerged below whatever peak we perceive. And yet we strive to love on, since our heart calls us to an ever-greater intimacy with All-That-Is.
By the issues of our hearts we come to know ourselves. In our relationships, through our mutual and separate experiences, we grow toward some things and away from others. And sometimes people just go different directions,
Each has a Dharma to fulfill, a mystery to live, a story to tell, a song to sing. Sometimes we sing in unison, sometimes we sing in harmony, sometimes we sing solo. And solitude has its virtues. Each has its own appropriate time to happen if we are to live a full life.
That's why each person we love is so important, whether we had pleasurable or painful experiences with them. It's also why it's good to show our love for our friends while they're here. When they die, we get to move our love into timeless realms and take a moment or two to reflect on our own inevitable time when we too will check out from this mortal vale. The Mystery is always around the corner, and sometimes Maugham's "Appointment at Samarra" is inevitable.
Now there's not much left to fulfill in this important life relationship except the prayers to help guide her through the Bardo. We are told our prayers for the dead assists them toward whatever frequency of the Heavenworld where they will find peace and instruction until their next time to reincarnate. These honor and fulfill the contract of love we agreed to with the one we loved so long ago that had to become unconditional by necessity of our evolution.
So it's goodbye and bon voyage into the unknown OverSoul for my ex. Aum and blessings on your passage into a far more peaceful existence than you ever knew here.
© Copyright 2009 Robert Wilkinson