Sunday, July 22, 2007

An open letter to Hal...

and Bob and Matt n Angel and whoever else gets it. (I mean really gets it.)

I've kept my religious and spiritual cards close.

Whatever your 'hand', it's not something to fight or debate. It is what it is and there are no trump cards. No winning hands. Your royal flush doesnt beat anybody elses royal flush.

It's a personal thing and if we all held our cards and more importantly, held our tenets, this would be a better world.

Having spoken thusly, Hal, Mr Johnson, I too have worked with my long deceased Father. I have no other way to understand or explain it.

It doesn't happen often. Not nearly often enough. I can't conjure it. When it happens, it happens.


I'm willing my fingers, hands, wrists and forearms into jelly. I'm lying on my face in the floor of a King Air. Pouring my right hand and a ratchet down one side of a seat track and my left hand and a wrench down the other side in order to touch "The Forbidden Sprocket" of a mechanical landing gear...

Or, trying to figure out the difference between the red lead and the black lead of a multimeter and wondering why an autopilot servo has so damned many wires...

AND, I feel it. I get it. I fix it.

It ain't me. I couldn't do it alone.

Cornered on a dead end dirt street. In a Teguc barrio. Out numbered.

I was not alone.

Sometimes, I can feel his hands on my shoulders.

Sometimes, he wants to shake some sense into me.

Unfortunately, that time, for him, passed thirty plus years ago.

WOW! Catharsis? Not the right feeling... Revelation? I don't want to go there. Realization.

NO! Recognition! That's it.

I need to learn to recognize why the unseen hands are on my shoulders and remember to ask myself,

"What is he trying to tell me?"

Thank you Mr. Johnson for setting me about thinking and thinking through.

(BTW... That should be the end of the Mister stuff!)


Bob Barbanes said...

What you're alluding to, David, is very simply "life after death." How is it possible for your father to communicate with you IN ANY WAY now? To the atheist it is impossible. Yet it happens to many people. And we need only be open to the possibility that it does.

So if we accept that our lives go on in some way after we die, then we must have a "soul" or something. Right? Maybe call it a "spirit." Whatever. It's not a giant assumptive leap. Well, who or what put this "spirit" into us? How did it get there?

I maintain that it happened deliberately, ergo, there must have been a Creator. We do not know for which purpose we were put here on Earth, but it's fairly clear that there is one. Maybe just to help and guide those who come behind us. Whatever.

I do not hold my beliefs like deep, dark secrets that must be kept hidden from everyone else lest someone be offended. God forbid! And I respect the intellectually-derived beliefs of others. But I do not respect someone who says, "Look, this life is all we got and there's nothing else to it because I haven't personally witnessed or experienced anything to convince me otherwise."

I think Hal's original story, and yours too, David, are enough to convince me, as if I needed any convincing at all. Which I don't, because I have similar such experiences aplenty of my own that our lives do indeed go on after we die.

Hal Johnson said...

David, I think experiences such as yours happen to many people, but too many just aren't open to the messages or guidance offered by loved ones who've passed. I'm like Bob: I can intellectually respect the view that life may end along with the passing of the mortal body, even if I believe otherwise. But, when folks tell me that they're certain that there is no life after death, I just don't get it. They would tell me, "Okay Hal, show me the evidence that there is life after death." My answer to them is, "Okay, show me the evidence that there isn't." I find it easier to discuss spirituality with an agnostic than an atheist. An agnostic may doubt the existence of God and the afterlife, but he or she will at least concede the possibility. A hard-core atheist, on the other hand, insists that there is no God and no afterlife, even through he or she can't provide evidence to prove otherwise. I wonder if some atheists have such "faith" in their views because to even admit the possibility of life after death would open a door of hope--a door they would always fear would be slammed on their noses.