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Wednesday, July 02, 2014

There Are No Goodbyes

Rory, my family's young friend who died on June 21st, had his memorial service today.  The chapel was PACKED, which shows how loved this sweet young man was.  My son and I had a long, long talk after, which was good--he and I have been not making a lot of time to see each other--and I am glad we were able to have a good talk.

The service was beautiful, with a very moving video of Rory's life.  To me, on some level, I always remember him as that cute little kid playing video games with my son and running around with him in those long-ago, golden summers that seem sealed as if in amber now.

I drove around a little after dropping my son off, through some roads that wound around fields; there was light shining through grey fog, and sleeping houses, as well as very dark trees.  I thought a bit about life and death, and where the spirit goes after the body is gone.  The Zen community to which I belong (and at which I will sit zazen for Rory at noon tomorrow) believes that the soul goes into the great mystery where rebirth/reincarnation takes place, or release from samsara, the cycle of rebirth. No matter what a person believes, even if you believe there is nothing at all after this life--something I do not believe--I think there are no goodbyes.  There are only stages in the love we have for each other.  My sister is still a huge part of my life, even though her body is gone.  My baby son who died in 1986 is no less precious to me for having lived only six months in my womb.  We live, our bodies die, but I believe the consciousness lives on.

I have had three near-death experiences in my life and each one of them was beautiful and very positive.  I believe we are not alone when we die, that we are helped by loved ones, and that perhaps we even help our loved ones who are left behind to grieve.

At any rate, I hope my dear readers will pause for a moment and say a prayer, an affirmation, a blessing, or just good and kind thoughts, for Rory and his family.