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Hope, Faith and Belief – connections that end, connections that remain

Some spiritual ideas to consider:

The spiritual experiences I’m going to write about may or may not happen to you. They are not required to happen, there are no judgements associated with whether you have experienced any of these things or not. They are just possibilities. They have been reported by many people but surely not by all. Their meaning is always open to how you interpret them if you do experience them.

My purpose is just to suggest that if you do experience things like this, that you can consider them in a way you perhaps have not in the past and again, if you do experience them, that they can be used to help in your growth and healing. If you do not experience them or you do not find the explanations that I propose resonate with you, that is fine as well. We all have to find our own way through our grief and what works for you is the important thing for your growth and healing. These ideas are what I took from my own experiences and how I interpreted them is how they seemed to be for me as I was experiencing them. I share them in hopes that if you are trying to understand similar experiences you can use what I learned to help you with your understanding.

There are many places where the spiritual nature of life and death are discussed and written about and most religions have very strong pictures of the part spirit (soul) plays in ones life and on how the spirit (soul) behaves and where it goes after it is free of its earthly body. It is not for this discussion to talk about any of those things in a religious way. My only purpose here is to share my own understanding of spirit based on what I’ve seen, heard and experienced during my bereavement and to propose some thoughts to help you perhaps recognize that a manifestation and communication of spirit might be possible within the context of your own grief.

We are our spirits:

If you believe that there is an animating force within us that is who we are and that it is usually call soul or spirit when we talk about it, then it seems possible that who we are isn’t limited by the body that surrounds it. If spirit is really who we are, when our bodies die, our spirits are then free of the constraints of the material world and are free to move onward. Again, where they go and how or why that happens is usually in the realm of religion and not for this discussion. In the way I see it, what is important in this context is that if who we are is not just our bodies, and if we are truly our spirits or souls, then the passing of our bodies in no way ends the existence of the essence that is ourselves. 

We had a magnet on our refrigerator for a number of years with words on it that simply expressed this idea in a way that was very clear and comforting to us, it said: “there is no death, only a change of worlds”…

Dreams, visions, voices from across the veil. 

The passing of a spouse or partner is often a reality altering experience. Sometimes, in our extreme sadness, disorientation and emotional pain, it may seem like we can see a bit more of the universe than we normally do. Sometimes we seem to be able to see or hear our loved ones reaching out to us in dreams or visions or voices. Perhaps, instead of these things just being a product of our grief or imagination, we actually can experience different things during our bereavement that we may not be able to do under more ordinary circumstances.

Perhaps in a sense, the veil to the spirit world thins with the passage of a soul through it and creates an increase in permeability through which we can experience things that we may not be able to do otherwise. The thinning of the veil between the everyday world and the world of soul, between the material world and the spirit world may allow us to experience dreams, visions and voices, that are messages if you will, from our loved ones. 

Suspending our disbelief, a new way to look at the world.

If we experience these moments of perceptual change, if we see or hear more than we are used to and are experiencing things we may not understand or may not have believed in, we have a choice. We can deny what we are perceiving and hold tight to the world as we knew it or we can suspend our disbelief and accept that the world is a larger and stranger place than we thought. 

If we choose to, we can come to see that there are things that are possible that we may not be able to explain or fit into the seemingly rational way of looking at the world we my have grown up with or have lived with all our lives to this point. We may not be able to explain them but by suspending our disbelief, we can take the dreams, visions and voices and listen to them and accept that we hear and see them, and be joyful and honored that our love was so strong that it could open these pathways and allow these messages to reach in both directions across the veil.

The thinning of the veil between the material world and the spirit world with the passage of a soul across it added to the emotional turmoil of our grief, for a brief time, may actually allow us to experience these messages from our loved ones; not as hallucinations, but as actual transcendent experiences, as reality, not illusion.

Love flows both ways: 

I think that for most of us, we can agree that our spouses or partners loved us as we loved them and throughout our lives together, the love that we shared built a spiritual connection between us. If you believe as it says in so many different places, that when you die, you are reunited with your loved ones, then they need to be able to recognize you, spirit to spirit, and you need to be able to recognize them, spirit to spirit when you are reunited.  I believe that we learn that recognition not of our bodies but of our spirits all throughout our lives together and through the love that we build and share. 

So also, our loved ones would not want us to be hurting or sad or lonely as much as we would not want to be those things ourselves. We surely would not have wanted that to be true for them if the roles were reversed. So, should it not also be possible that they can and would want to reach back across the veil to give us reassurance if they could, to sooth us, to comfort us, to hold us with spirit arms just to let us know they are safe and at peace and that their spirit is still with us and they are and will be a part of us forever.

New ways to communicate: 

Remember the two stories I began this Topic with. It is possible to accept all these new possibilities and take the communications we receive and see them as a gift and a connection and a way of communicating that was not available to us before. I have seen that we can learn the language of it, we can come to see the presence of our loved ones in moments when things we don’t expect to happen surprise us with new meanings. We can slowly come to truly believe that our spirits are who we really are and that spirit is eternal. We can come to believe that spirits change worlds and locations, put on and off bodies as if they were clothing, but spirit, soul, and thus the essence of our loved ones, is always there, just across the veil and sometimes, the veil is thin or porous and we can still communicate, just using other ways, other “languages”.   

For me, these realizations and experiences have been a comfort and have become an integral part of the new life I have been building. They are often a source of joy and wonder that fills my world with hope and healing. Suspending my disbelief and opening myself up to spirit has enriched my life by expanding the world larger than I once believed it to be.