Rene Westbrook

For most of us, there is a nightly ritual that snatches day from our clutches in order to surrender into that shallow "death" called sleep. Populated with flashing signs of wild meanderings, we enter into a dream world of images and side shows that only the subconscious state can deconstruct. This constant dress rehearsal allows us to ease into an unknown place that comes with a stark warning: our waking hours are numbered...yikes!

In my early twenties, I was very interested in that heavenly place of no return and began to read books by Elizabeth Kubler-Ross, a Swiss American psychiatrist who became a modern day shaman on death and dying. Her pioneering work on the subject helped many understand what she called the five stages of grief and its powerful hold on the human psyche.  Through her efforts, most of us are comfortable with the near death experience, past lives, and ubiquitous of all, the journey through the tunnel of "light".

It has been months since I sat down to share my insights and thoughts with all of you. One of my beloved brothers suddenly died and I had much to say about this experience, but no heart for the task.  I left for home on a six week journey and found a renewed sense of purpose and Life. Out there, traveling over 7,000 miles on a train across two countries (Canada and the United States) I witnessed the fragility and passion in so many of those I met along the way.

Once the trip ended, I had time to reflect on my brother and his sudden departure.  I listened to wise prophets and of course Ram tapes on love and evolution. We have been taught by our teacher that we are waking up from a dream and the physical life is only part of the expansion into Self.  The more I understand this the easier it becomes to realize that there is no such thing as separation from those who have crossed over into their next adventure. Non physical reality is a further expansion of all the many worlds that we choose to experience.  Thus, the reality that death is separation and loss is false. 

The bountiful life that is ever present often eludes us on a daily basis. When do we stop and smell the roses or arise knowing full well that this is a day not promised to anyone; and yet, here we are!  Each breath, taken and released might serve as a stark reminder of just how powerful and fragile the fine line is between here and not. 

There is a beloved member of my close knit circle of friends and family who has been challenging the boundaries between here and there.  A massive brain tumor has been threatening him since he was 15 years old.  He staved off the first round and now, 25 years later,with the tumor back, the decision must be made to stand and deliver.  He is a brave and calculating soul, often impatient with the doctors and their lack of providence of things unseen.  Surely, every day is a blessing that he insists is his to have and to hold.

A few nights ago I watched a sweet film called "In Time" about a family whose male members had the ability to go back in time. The premise began with the son on his 21 birthday. His father told him he could change the outcome of past situations by going into a dark closet. Once there all he had to do is think of a moment he wanted to return to and make the appropriate changes. Presto, this incredulous young man found himself in sort of a "Groundhog Day" but with a better outcome.

There are many ways to hit the jackpot.  Normally, I seize every opportunity to test that theory as I go about my created day, moving from one scenario to another.  I share this quirky and anecdotal tale with you as a reminder that unseen elements of this great life can creep up when we least expect it, often with amazing results.