The death of a loved one is arguably the most difficult experience a person will ever face. This article discusses some common reactions to a loved one’s death. There is also commentary on the insight we receive from another’s death.
I debated whether or not to release this article since the topic can be seen in the negative. Most people only want to read uplifting stories. However, death is something that we must all contend with sooner or later. This article is not meant to be an exploration into the depths of sadness that one experiences with the death of a loved one. I wrote this to share my thoughts on the subject for the benefit of others.
I have been involved in mysticism and metaphysics for at least 30 years (since I was a child). I feel I have a good handle on death. I am now a member of a Spiritualist church. I also worked in a hospice facility. I can tell you what happens at the time of someone’s passing. I can describe many aspects of the other side. This is not meant to impress anyone. I am very comfortable with the idea that a person’s soul continues on after leaving the body. That is my belief. Like a lot of people, I know that the deceased are fine. In fact, they are even better than they were before their passing.
The knowledge I just mentioned doesn’t make it any easier to part with your loved ones. No matter how well you understand the change called death, it’s incredibly difficult to let go. And no matter how much time you have to say goodbye someone it is never enough. You always want just a little more time. Your religion or philosophy does not help prepare you for what is coming. It is not just that you are worried about them. It’s the fact that you can no longer see them or be with them. Let me tell you a personal story.
I owned a wonderful German Shepherd named Bailey for thirteen years. This dog meant the world to me. Many pet owners can relate to this. In Bailey's last year, he developed a disease called mylopothy. It’s a type of spinal degeneration. I had a year to say goodbye to him. Even at that point I was not ready for his death. One Friday morning, I went to take him outside. I discovered he couldn’t walk. I knew I was going to have to put him down. Because it was a Friday. I had to wait until Monday to bring him to the vet. Putting him down was the worst thing I have ever had to do. Even with the advance notice I had that Bailey would die, I still wasn’t ready for it. I still wanted more time with him. We all want more time. People say “I wasn’t ready.” Or “It was too soon.” There are those who didn’t get to say goodbye because the death was unexpected. It’s true many other people have gone through this. Even so, this is my personal experience.
It’s interesting what people will say about dogs. Someone told me that I was lucky because German Shepherds usually only live to twelve. My father told me that any human life is worth more than a dog’s. A Christian pastor told me that dogs do not go to heaven because they cannot accept Jesus. I am not offended by these remarks. Everyone has the right to their beliefs. You cannot tell a person that his or her beliefs are wrong. It only matters what you believe in your heart.
Death is very emotional. Emotions do not always agree with intellect. Though the deceased person is still alive, you cannot communicate with them. It’s impossible to be with them in the physical world. That is what makes the death of a loved one a loss. The passing of time does not heal us. It only softens the pain. That loss will be carried with us until the time of our own passing.
Although the death of a loved one brings pain, it also gives us wisdom. Death is our greatest teacher. For some of us, the death of another brings awareness and insight. Experiencing the death of a loved one is, unlike any other experience. This information may or may not be comforting to those grieving the loss of a loved one. One thing a grief stricken person will learn from death is the certainty of his own death. What does that mean? Well, it means that time is short, and we need to be aware of our own death at all times. At least in the back of our mind.
I often receive messages from spirits through mediums that tell me to “Stop procrastinating.” Or “Hurry up.” At first I thought these messages were annoying. I hate being pestered. In time, I came to understand that spirits have a difficult time communicating with us in our limited language. When spirits say “It's time to get moving,” they mean that our time on Earth is limited. While time and space are an illusion (as I have brought up in other articles), time on this plane starts running out the day we are born. Our birth certificates come with an expiration date. We just don’t know when it will happen. If you are reading this and you are 40 or 45 years old, you may already have lived half of your life. That's assuming you will live to be 80 or 90 years old. Many people die much younger than that. Despite the truth that time does not exist in the invisible world, it’s understood that in the physical world, our bodies age. Therefore, time is of the essence. We all have missions and things to accomplish in our lifetime. If we procrastinate, they may not be completed. Knowledge that death is upon us gives us the motivation we need to get things done.
Sometimes people will even take on the pain of a dying person. It’s not that unusual. It’s also very uncomfortable. The person that does this is called a sensitive or an Empath. This phenomenon may be isolated to a single event, or to something more permanent. In this case, the death of a loved one is responsible. At some point, the person experiencing the thoughts and feelings of the dying person will realize they are not his own. These feelings will spread to other members of the household, including pets. Emotions are formidable. They move with great force.
My own father is going through the stages death. Recently I found myself daydreaming. In this dream, I found myself at my father’s friend’s house. This person was like a grandfather to me. When I walked into the house, I was greeted by several people who I didn’t know. They were very friendly. I said to one of them, “Where is Stanely?” I then I saw Stanley sitting in a chair. He began talking. But I couldn’t understand him. A man sitting behind Stanly motioned that he is crazy. I thought “Oh, Stanley has Alzheimer’s disease.” Then I thought, “Wait a minute, Stanley died a long time ago.” So I began walking around the house in a daze. Suddenly a new thought came to me. I began thinking, “Everything different. Nothing is the same. All of my memories are gone.” Then I realized these were not my thoughts. They were coming from my father. As I said, it’s common for people to share in the stages of their loved one's death. In one sense it’s positive, because it gives you an understanding of what he or she is going through. At the same time its draining. If you find yourself in this situation, talk about it to someone who you trust.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
David Almeida is a long-time metaphysicist. He has studied Rosicrucian philosophy and esoteric knowledge for several decades. David has earned the title of certified hypnotist and Reiki healer. He is also the author of Illusion of the Body: Introducing the Body Alive Principle