‘Channeling’: Living With The Dead

Hay Winn
Much as I am new here myself, im into fun and informative myself, there’s a time and a place for everything (ten thousand things) and my expectations are looking for friendly advice on my journey from like minded individuals
Tao is a complicated thing if it was easy everyone would own it.(I think I have seen you on the tea house)
Anyway here’s hoping we become all we can be
(I am 46 iv been happilyish married for 25 years lol)



  • edited December 1969
    I was outside in the morning sun watering the garden and thought back on all the mornings my mother experienced the same sun, air, and morning dew. I was ‘channeling’ my mother who just died a few day ago. I want to jot down a few of the thoughts coalescing out of this stream of consciousness while they are fresh...

    The popular version of channeling is the notion that one connects with the personality of another who is dead. In my view this is an illusion, given that my perception of the world around me, and indeed within me, is a reflection of who ‘I am’ — my needs, fears, and everything in between.

    The consciousness we experience, and indeed share, is universal. The awareness of particulars, the shades, the meanings, the interpretations that each consciousness evokes differs. A bee see the world differently than a human, biologically at the outset, and agenda-wise from there on. A bees sees the flower and needs to go for the pollen; we see the flower and often feel a need to cut it and put it on display. The initial spark — the light of consciousness — is [chref=56]mysterious sameness[/chref], universal, constant. When you return to that, leaving behind any personal agenda, you are ‘channeling’ the dead and the living. Life and death merge as [chref=10]One[/chref].

    Even given that we may thus channel the dead, we still grieve for the loss of a loved one. Why? And even more curious for me has been why people grieve for the dead they have never met and don’t know. Even more basic, what is death really? To know death we must first know what life is — it’s meaning.

    I now feel the simplest way to understand the meaning of life is to view life as a relationship. Our perceived relationship with ‘out there’ and ‘in here’ is life’s meaning — the why, the what, the who, the how of it all. Relationships arise from a heart felt agenda — our needs and fears. These lend context and personality to consciousness. Being highly social, the deepest relationships for us are generally those we have with people, then come the relationships we have with ideas (beliefs) and things.

    That life is in sum, simply a set of relationships, is perhaps easy to understand [chref=70]yet no one in the world can understand and put that knowing into practice[/chref]. We are instinctively set up to regard the objects of our relationships as real rather than as part of a process. We can’t help but judge the book of life by its cover. Its cover? The book of life is relationship; Its cover are the images that appear to us to be real. This helps explain the sometimes intense and irrational emotions that surround the causes we champion. We can’t help judge life’s book by its cover, and so we ‘believe’ that our particular relationship and agenda is the ‘One true way’.

    The agony we, or any social animal feels, when a loved one dies is caused by the LOSS of the relationship and not death per se. Loss is the key, not the object of the loss. The loss of the relationship causes the suffering and it matters not one wit whether the loss is a car, a pet, a child, an idea, etc. The depth of the relationship determines how we feel. Also important is whether we placed all our relationship eggs into one basket. If so, the loss is profoundly devastating. Here we can see the advantage of having a relationship with ‘God’. A true ‘[chref=4]God[/chref]’, in the broadest definition, is a relationship that cannot be lost, even through the death of the believer.

    It feels fitting that death should be my greatest teacher. My first intimate experience with it came when my brother died in the early 60s. I was gripped in a quandary; what was life; what was death. After some months I had an epiphany sitting in the bus going home from work: life and death were two sides of the same coin. That was my first real sense of [chref=56]mysterious sameness[/chref]. Now with my mother’s death comes a minor epiphany (I’m far too old and jaded to have any major ones, :) ). I have realized the final (for me) answer to the question, “What is the meaning of life?” Life’s meaning is the relationship. This ‘meaning’ applies not only to us, but all living things. Beyond that, words fail.
  • edited December 1969
    I was very sorry to hear your mom had passed on. All the compassion and understanding in the world can't really help in such a time, can it? Just in case you can use them somehow, I do want to offer a few images my dad's passing gave me. After all what else do we have to offer each other but our images?

    After my dad died three years ago, I found myself talking with him quite a bit more than I had when he was here with us.
    We all hear about how "great men" leave their works and institutions behind them. I came to realize that our memories of our loved ones, and the changes they left in us, are their great works, maybe the only works that really rate as great. We shape ourselves to everyone we really know, as we are shaped by them. Those changes in us that happened in our times with those who have left, are still here with us, as big important parts of us.
    Whether I'm talking to Dad's effects in me or to some non-physical but present independent version of him, isn't a question I expect to have answered this life. It doesn't seem to make much difference to me anyway. Given the separate seas of private images we each live in, it might well be that even when we talk with the people we live with, we only have our internal images of them, those same shapes of them in us, to touch and talk with anyway.

    As I adjusted to Dad being gone, I came to see that just as there are real, living shapes in me from our times together, so everything else he touched or even glanced at was also changed by their moments with him. Like me, each of these is a record of his being here, each in a very real way is his still being a part of here.

    I hope that when you're in the garden, sun or dew, or with any of the other affectionate friends who you and your mother shared for so long, you can find in each of them something that she touched and so changed. Her life continues in them as it does in you.

    Your relationship is different now, but no less real.

    See you Sunday?
  • edited December 1969
    [cite] Michael from a mountain:[/cite] Your relationship is different now, but no less real.
    My mother always said I wasn't 'normal'. In support of her view, I admit that I do have a non-normal view of life and death, i.e., life is the illusion; death is real. So, from my vantage point the relationship is more real now. All the more so since her death brought home to me ('proved') that the meaning of life is relationship; yet, the only real relationship is death. Alas, the immediacy of life~death eventually clouds over and easily returns us to our waking sleep. Still, I'll [chref=14]hold fast[/chref] to it as long as I can. Having fewer distractions at my age that becomes easier. :wink:
    See you Sunday?
    Why certainly!
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