Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Death Sits On Our Shoulders

I am feeling to share some of my perspectives on death and dying and throw some light or a different view upon the matter. I have believed in reincarnation since I was 15 years old upon reading about Bridie Murphy in the Womens Weekly. Many people with whom I speak say they have a feeling that we do come back and would like to think that there is a purpose, or let’s say a higher purpose to living a life, rather than death being the end of it. It also throws a spanner in the works of then believing in a heaven or hell. I have heard it said that hell is living here on earth in an unconscious state and that darkness exists here in the unillumined times of our lives. Fortunately we may choose to ‘wake up’ to spirituality and see things from a different perspective.
The reason for this piece about death is about being real and a gentle reminder that the only certainties in life are death and taxes. Is it not then best that we prepare ourselves for them both and in doing, create more harmony for family and friends in so doing, to get our affairs in order. How many of us have that sorted?
My ex-husband died on 5th August, the funeral was at Springvale Crematorium on the 13th, which was a wonderful celebration of his life. I had known Bill for 55 years, one of the longest relationships that I have had. Luckily he died peacefully in his sleep, rather than being bedridden for years as was his father before him. I was very proud of our five children who all spoke and shared stories about his life at the funeral, which flowed each into the other.
Death is such a personal thing to each of us I believe. We all have our own experiences and memories of the person, each is unique; no one can truly feel as another feels, nor walk in their shoes. Bill’s passing for me has caused way more grief than I had expected and I have given myself time to honestly feel as I feel and be quiet, appreciating the opportunity to go deeper within and get more in touch with other seemingly unrelated grief filled times and moments. It is said that there is a grief pool, where unresolved times of grief or loss in our lives settle. Another nice way of putting it is that it is like a string of pearls that we wear. It can be precious and each pearl an individual treasure, that holds a richness for us in our hearts.
My recent experience has been useful in helping me be in touch with my grief pool and has given me the opportunity to review my life and the effect that I have had upon others. This has been helped by looking through many old family photographs which easily got me in touch with long forgotten feelings and memories. Although it has been sad and painful, I have been provided with a wonderful opportunity to help me connect with deeper feelings. Then, through my spiritual practices this has enabled me to be able to clear, release and resolve those hidden feelings in a way that had not been possible before.
This has been quite easy with a Feeling Is Healing process which I am able to email to you if you feel that it would be useful. As we go about our everyday lives, we can live them superficially, filling our time and using our energy in ways that are not in our best interests, depending on what we wish to achieve in our lifetime. What goes around comes around and I love the idea of ‘paying it forward’ and living a life in full awareness and in touch with my feelings. For me it is important to be more in touch with feelings and to get that monkey off my back, the ever busy mind, filled with its mental chatter. And so I am daily working towards self-mastery.
My recent journey was unexpected.My initial feeling upon hearing of my ex-husband’s death was gratitude in that after our divorce, we had made peace with each other and treated one another with kindness, love and respect. However I realised that in wanting to create boundaries in my life and not really trusting him sufficiently, I could have done better and regret that the opportunity to do that has passed. My experience was that towards the end of his life, I was able to see Bill with new eyes, instead of still seeing him as a snapshot from a very long time ago. I had him in a box. We like to categorise our life and experience, placing everything like items into its own little box. This is what I did, have a snapshot image from the past and my mind held onto that. 
It is a very unconscious process, as our unconscious mind is constantly at work as it sees things, categorises, judges, tries hard to make sense of everything, hence the habit of putting every little thing into its own box. To stop this we have to become more mindful and conscious the way we live our life. We need to practice greeting anew.
Until recently I was not able to see how much Bill had changed, how he had mellowed, softened and become helpful, with many wonderful attributes. That was not greeting life anew, which I shall now explain more about. To greet anew is that in each moment, every hour of each day we are constantly greeting anew, whether it is with people, things, or anything else. Even oneself! And it takes vigilance.
It helps to prevent the following, that we may keep drawing similar experiences to us, in part due to habits and living an unconscious life, rather like Groundhog Day. We find ourselves repeating what we do as we go round and round in circles, going over the same lessons again and again. You know the feeling when something is familiar, we find ourselves in similar relationships or situations with work or people and feel quite stuck.
So that is one important intention to hold, to treat each other anew and also to practice the Holy Encounter. The Holy Encounter is to recognise God in everyone, including oneself, to understand and realise that our essence is made of Spirit, or God or whatever term you may choose to use which is meaningful to you, as we live by the impulses drawn from that very essence, which expresses itself through the vehicle of our physical, or human body.
Nowadays instead of feeling intermittently sad and regretful that I could have done better, I am grateful to my life with Bill and the opportunities that presented. Despite everything and how I had felt myself to be a victim in the marriage, finally I am blessed with gratitude for the life we shared and comprehend that his influence, even his control, was done out of love and with his best wishes for me and other people. I have learnt from Michael King that love is the motivation behind everything. We may not understand this and more often than not are likely to do the following. Argue the point, take things personally, judge, project onto others, are either aggressive or passive aggressive without knowing it (or a multitude of other less than helpful things). To live each day and moment with genuine gratitude is highly beneficial and altogether necessary if we are to live our lives rich in experience and abundance.
I would like to leave you with a quote by Mahatma Ghandi, “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”
Love and Blessings to each of you. We are able to live a reality filled life, full of rewards, making considerable progress with which with we may as a result enter into the next life far richer and with greater opportunities.
Lynette Mitchell xo
Disclaimer: This post is written from my personal understanding and experience and is not to be misconstrued in any way. Advice given is general and as I am not a medical doctor, take no responsibility for how it is received, my intention is that articles will be supportive and assist in living a fuller, holistic living life.
I am available for either laughter yoga sessions and holistic living counselling and lead the Free Community Ferntree Gully Laughter Club which you are welcome to attend. Phone me on 0425 799 258 or email me to make contact, or to receive my monthly email newsletter, or sign up on Laughter For Living

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