As you may know, one of our dear angel friends, Kathy Thompson, transitioned Monday night due to an unexpected car accident. I spent many hours on the phone yesterday with those that knew her and loved her so much. At times those I listened to questioned how this tragic accident could have happened to one as loving as she, how unfair it seemed, and asked how should one really feel as a Course student.
The Course does indeed tell us many ideas about death and the illusion and the attraction that we have to it. But when we lose someone that is so close to us, or as in this case with Kathy, a pure heart and generous spirit that she was, how can one make sense of it? Is it permissible to grieve? Additionally, the Course tells me that this world and the body is all an illusion, am I to just ignore what I am feeling deep inside?
The answer is simply, feel what you are feeling and do not ignore what is rising to the surface. Many students would be tempted to enter into the denial of the feelings that are there. It is not a time to pretend that all is “Love and Light” when we do not experience it in the moment as such. It is the thoughts and feelings that are arising that need our attention. The Holy Spirit walks with us in this journey, even if at times the journey is one of grief at the loss of a loved one. This is not the time to be “perfect” Course students, but instead to practically apply its principles. No one needs passages of the Course quoted to them at this time, what one needs is compassion and kindness in their process wherever the person may be in the process. It is not to dismiss what is arising. What is arising is there to assist us, to help us continue to release more into the Hands of God.
When we push aside what is there in front of us, the tears, the anger, the devastation, or the despair, we are really pushing aside the healing that can take place in our lives. Myself for example, felt triggered by how she died. I have a fear of water, this I know in the back of my mind. Kathy’s accident occurred after her vehicle went through a wooden guard rail and landed upside down in the fast currents of the Fox River. In this trigger that came up for me, instead of pretending that the fear was not there, I have thanked the fear that came up and handed it over to the Holy Spirit for His interpretation and His Guidance.
Our theme for the month of July has been the section in the Course about “The Obstacles to Peace.” It was no accident that this week we were studying “The Third Obstacle: The Attraction of Death.” This part I will quote since this passage had been strong for us all that night and since hearing of Kathy’s accident.
When anything seems to you to be a source of fear, when any situation strikes you with terror and makes your body tremble and the cold sweat of fear comes over it, remember it is always for one reason; the ego has perceived it as a symbol of fear, a sign of sin and death. Remember, then, that neither sign nor symbol should be confused with source, for they must stand for something other than themselves. Their meaning cannot lie in them, but must be sought in what they represent. And they may thus mean everything or nothing, according to the truth or falsity of the idea which they reflect. Confronted with such seeming uncertainty of meaning, judge it not. Remember the holy Presence of the One given to you to be the Source of judgment. Give it to Him to judge for you, and say:
Take this from me and look upon it, judging it for me.
Let me not see it as a sign of sin and death, nor use it for destruction.
Teach me how not to make of it an obstacle to peace, but let You use it for me, to facilitate its coming.
As one is ready to join with the Holy Spirit, one is ready. It is not to force or push someone into that readiness. It is to allow the readiness to be there within the other person or if we are talking about ourselves here in our own grief process.
Yes, we are never alone and Holy Spirit is always with us whether we invite Him in or not. He stands ready to be of service to us. As I told one of our Workbook for Students classes last evening, it is to honor and respect where one is in the moment. Honor and respect, be present to oneself. This is actually what Kathy’s life was about. She was wholly present to all that were joined with her be it in person or via the phone or even the internet. She listened and understood, yet she was a woman of great strength, love and joy. She held the light for others who could not do it for themselves in the moment. She was as Holy Spirit is for us.
How do I help someone else? By stepping back from what the ego would have us do and allowing Holy Spirit lead the way. Sometimes that way is to cry tears with others, to hold hands, to share truth, or to just sit still and listen. I do not know until I ask Him.
Jesus reminds us in these recent Workbook Lessons that we are not a body and that we are free for we are as our Father has created us to be. Sometimes we recognize that and sometimes we do not. Hold the Light for others who cannot as those will hold it for us when we cannot. That is how we truly join together.