Time to Awaken!
Important Messages from Spirit
Many years ago, while still in college, I bought a small scroll that had a quote on it titled, “Normal Day,” by Mary Jean Irion. Even back then, I understood how fleeting life could be and the importance of appreciating and savoring this gift we have been given.
Perhaps that’s part of the reason why, despite all the pain and suffering we might endure here, when we are on the other side, we put up our hands when asked and say “yes” to incarnating here again and again. I’ve even heard some spiritual mentors say that we don’t even wait to be asked if we would like to return. We just request the next possible time to jump in and do this “human being” lifetime.
In one of his channeled messages from Kryon, an interdimensional being of light, Lee Carroll shared some of Kryon’s thoughts on this issue. Kryon explained that no matter how difficult our lives have been or how much suffering we have experienced, most of us, almost from the moment we return “Home,” will want to return back here on this plane as soon as we can to help others and to continue the spiritual growth of our souls.
From the moment we return “Home,” we will want to return as soon as we can to help others and to continue the spiritual growth of our souls. Photo by Donna El Haber, 2015. All rights reserved.
While here, though, many of us long for a respite from what we may consider the “grind” of life. That’s why vacations are so coveted and often feel so fleeting – because we haven’t learned to enjoy life on deeper levels of awareness in each of the precious moments we are given, no matter where we are or what we are doing. When someone dies, however, we feel very intensely the fragility of this precious fleeting gift.
Here is the excerpt from Mary Jean Irion’s “Let Me Hold You While I May” from Yes, World: A Mosaic of Meditation (1970), known by many as “Normal Day”:
let me be aware of the treasure you are.
Let me learn from you,
love you, savour you, bless you before you depart.
Let me not pass you by in quest of some rare and perfect tomorrow.
Let me hold you while I may, for it will not always be so.
One day I shall dig my nails into the earth,
or bury my face in the pillow,
or stretch myself taut,
or raise my hands to the sky
and want, more than all the world, your return.
Introduction to Natalie Goldberg’s “Long Quiet Highway”
I was looking for a book the other day and happened to come upon one I had not thought about or read for a long time. It was a book titled, Long Quiet Highway: Waking Up in America by Natalie Goldberg. Her introduction is so moving and profound. I once used it to begin a class I taught on writing and creativity.
Photo image of “Long Quiet Highway: Waking Up in America” by Natalie Goldberg, from Amazon.com, http://www.amazon.com/Long-Quiet-Highway-Waking-America/dp/0553373153
In reading her introduction again, I felt the power of her call to “wake up” to the fullness and richness of the lives we are living, to these precious gifts no matter who we are or what we do. I wanted to share this beautiful and powerful introduction with you. So I have recorded it to spread Natalie’s magical message of the importance of being fully awake and keenly mindful, not only as writers, but in all we do.
For those of you who are drawn to reading the book, you will appreciate all the beautiful life lessons Natalie learned while studying with her Zen Master, her most beloved Katagiri Roshi. You can click here or play the audio below to listen to my reading of Natalie Goldberg’s moving introduction to Long Quiet Highway.
It is a very powerful message to begin the very important process of truly waking up to this life we have been given. To fully wake up is to feel so deeply how precious each moment is and to be mindful in these moments. It is to remind ourselves of the work we came here to do and the brief time we may be here, even if we feel as though it will never end.
The Greek philosopher Pythagoras shared, “No man is so old but thinks he will live yet another day.” I think it is this impermanence of our lives in these physical forms that calls to our souls to get busy fulfilling our mission and life purpose. It’s like having an assignment with a strict deadline. After this time, you are told that no term papers will be accepted. We all know what’s it’s like to hustle to get something done with a tight deadline and what it’s like to feel as if there is no deadline and we have endless time to complete our assignment.
Photo by Donna El Haber, 2015. All rights reserved.
It’s even interesting to consider the actual word “deadline,” that includes the word “dead” in it. Energies can be revved up just at the mere thought of a “deadline” as adrenaline starts pumping. We don’t know, however, what our exact deadline is. And if we are not really “awake,” we can spend so much time pretending that we have all the time in the world to fulfill our purpose and share our gifts.
Whether it’s the painting you are putting off doing, the book you will write next year, or the service you are planning to offer to enrich someone else’s life, it’s possible you might never get to accomplish what you thought you would. Spirit has been nudging me with a series of messages about impermanence, the relatively short time we have to share our gifts, and about the importance of being in service to the world while we are here. Have you experienced any of these messages too?
Appreciating this Fleeting Gift of Life
A friend had a senior dog who had been her beloved companion for more than 14 years. Her dog, Matty Rose, lived a wonderful life and shared so many of her gifts with Jeanne. But her kidneys were failing, and some years back, Jeanne knew it would soon be time for Matty Rose to make her transition.
In the sacred window of time that Jeanne had with her sweet and loving girl, she was so fully awake to each moment shared with Matty Rose. Jeanne understood so well how precious all their moments and memories together were. It was not easy, but with her other dog, Eli, they made the very most of those last moments with their cherished friend.
Matty Rose stayed as long as she could and made the most of her last moments with her beloved guardian Jeanne. She is seen here with her brother Henry, who made his transition when he was only three. I am sure he was there to greet his big sister. Photo courtesy of Jeanne Heil, 2010. All rights reserved.
Several years ago one of our friends was admitted into the hospital with severe pain in her head. My husband and I had done some counseling with her and her husband to bring them closer together a few weeks before this incident. During their session, I shared a story with them that really woke them both up. It was about a woman whose husband went into the hospital for tests and suddenly and unexpectedly died during one of them.
It really hit home for them. What if that had been either one of them, they wondered to themselves. That question led to a big breakthrough. I am so grateful for the close connection they have maintained following that session. She was released from the hospital and recovered well from her pain. This stressful event was a positive wake-up call for their whole family to become more mindful and work together to ease her stress-related pain.
Another friend, so vital and energetic, got severely injured while on the job and began a long process of recovery. Another wise and spiritual friend had to go to rehab following his heart attack and subsequent brain trauma.
This life is a special gift and none of us knows what might happen within it or when it might suddenly end.