Patricia is in our place in Heaven here and now…


A garden as our place in Heaven? Why not a garden after all Adam and Eve, the Bible tells us, started out in a garden with God? Fundamentalists have been looking for that Garden ever since here on earth. I know the creation story is myth just as the description of Heaven in Revelations is allegory and mystical symbolism. Mystics, like the author of Revelations, use symbolism to describe their experience; earthly places just do not compare. As it is written in the Bible, our place in Heaven is “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him” and thus cannot be described in physical terms. It can only be described by mystics and poets. The Garden of Eden is also a mystical revelation of the true nature of Heaven. It was not an actual place on earth that existed, as Fundamentalists believe, in the physical realm. Yes, anyone with a strong desire to be a hermit, can well believe existing in a place like the Garden of Eden for all eternity with God is truly Heaven.  The Bible tells us that Adam and Eve were with God and content and happy until they disobeyed God – evil had entered the garden. Some Jews as well as Christians believe the Garden of Eden was intended to be the eternal dwelling place of those who believe. A garden place in Heaven certainly would be Pat’s preference. She prayed that her dad would have a garden place (his dreamed of maple grove) in Heaven in her poem to her dad,

 The Maple Grove

E.E.S.  August 25, 1908   April 19, 1973

You never left us so before:

suddenly,

with no goodbye,

without a word of your return.

The masters of ceremonies tried to persuade us

you were the one lying silent

in a room heavy with flowers,

the only actor

without a speaking part.

I knew you were not there.

Others, with faces solemnly arranged

(so unlike your own)

told us you were gone

to realms

golden with angels, eternally serene.

may be so. I don’t know.

Such distant joys seem less real

than what I see

in your brothers’ faces,

hear

in your children’s voices:

shared looks, laughter inherited.

Perhaps you also evaded the angels,

and went to find

the home you often dreamed of:

the maple grove.

I believe our place, Pat’s and my place in Heaven, is indeed a garden just as she described in her poem to me in 1970:

You love me royally, as I love you,

seated together in our garden Kingdom,

keeping up our silent conversation,

clothed in robes of joy of every hue.

For us, our royal love has had no parallel:

It rooted, grew, and like a miracle

spread to the garden where in now we sit,

Clothed in the fragrance of God in it.

And this long miracle is to discover

the inmost me and you,

to nurse no longing for another,

to forge the soul and its desire together

gently, openly and forever.

Nothing grows but common flowers

outside our Kingdom’s wall.

Here alone the magic lies.

We ask nothing; we have all.

For Pat and me our place in Heaven is a garden Kingdom …. clothed in the fragrance of God. the scent of lilacs! There is nowhere else I’d rather be than in a lilac dell with God and thee, my beloved Patricia, for all eternity. She got it right yet again. She understood me as no other because we are soulmates forever. That Lilac grove garden with Pat, well I can go there in my mind simply by concentrating. The green, the light blue lilacs, the warmth, the sunlight, Pat, and the calm and great Peace, I can call them up at well. WOW what a gift. I can even smell the lilacs.

Now as to where Pat is now. “A lot of Christians … assume that the Kingdom of Heaven means the place where you go when you die — if you’ve been good. But the problem with this interpretation is that Jesus himself specifically contradicts it when he says, “The Kingdom of Heaven is within you” (that is, here) and “at hand” (that is, now). It’s not later, but lighter — some more subtle quality or dimension of experience accessible to you right in the moment. You don’t die into it: you awaken into it” — Cynthia Bourgeault in ‘The Wisdom of Jesus”. Yes, this is what I believe; death is the birth of the resurrection body. According to Christ’s words, (Luke 23:43) I believe Pat joined Christ that very day of her death, in paradise. My beloved departed spouse is neither asleep in Christ’s arms nor in Purgatory. She is awake and quite alive both in Christ and in me.

Anglicans do not believe in Purgatory. “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of Heaven.”  In other words, to be a part of the kingdom of God required a certain humility (“poor in spirit”). Pat’s diary showed she felt unworthy of entering Heaven. She hoped to spend some time in Purgatory so she could grow spiritually into Heaven. This despite Anglicans not believing in Purgatory. Article XXII. Of Purgatory. The Romish Doctrine concerning Purgatory, Pardons, Worshipping and Adoration, as well of Images as of Reliques, and also invocation of Saints, is a fond thing vainly invented, and grounded upon no warranty of Scripture, but rather repugnant to the Word of God.  So, Pat went directly to Heaven which is here and now and within us all with the communion of saints.

The candles went out but the dawn came and Pat is awake in Heaven in the arms of Christ!

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I’m calling it a VISION!


It was such a lovely dream yesterday that it left me feeling good all day and I went to sleep hoping for another. No, it didn’t come but I did sleep well all night; woke only to visit the WC three times. That dream started me thinking – was it only a dream or was it a vision. How did the author of Revelations know he was seeing a vision of heaven and the last days? How did Swedenborg know he was seeing the real heaven? My dream was very real to me and I felt I was seeing the real Patricia and the real heaven. That KISS was more than just feeling; it was so strong and affected my whole being – body, mind and soul. So far it is still affecting me and I am happier than I have been since Patricia departed – somehow I feel not as alone or sad. I am sure Patriicia and I are going to join again in heaven if we haven’t already in that dream – I still feel linked to her. Okay it was a vision and it helps me to believe it was as real as anything the author of Revelations or that Swedenborg saw. I repeat Anchoress and mystic Julian of Norwich’s words on why we have such visions:

““What, do you wish to know your Lord’s meaning in this thing? Know it well, love was his meaning. Who reveals it to you?
Love.
What did he reveal to you?
Love.
Why does he reveal it to you?
For love.
Remain in this and you will know more of the same.
Rest assured. All will be well. All manner of things shall be well.”

Very wise words which I shall take to heart. All really will be well with Pat and I. The Lord is my shepherd, he leads me into the place Pat is preparing for us in Heaven and we will dwell in the House of the Lord forever. Love is stronger than Death!

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Dream or Vision?


I was dreaming in that place between sleep and awake, where I still remember dreams and where I always communicate with Patricia. What a beautiful dream! It was like a vision of Heaven and the place Patricia is preparing for us.
Even though I could hear this morning’s rain outside the window, it was a sunny beautiful day in my dream. I was in a garden packed with lilacs in full bloom off in the distance was a Victorian farm house. I’ve never seen lilac bushes so fully packed with blooms. The scene was like the Lilac Dell in the Royal Ontario Botanical Gardens but much closer together bushes and much fuller blooms.

Lilac Dell

Though a gap I saw Patricia and I standing in front of our parents who were welcoming us. Our parents were not really in focus and soon vanished from the scene as did the brick farm house. Pat and I were glowing and she was beautiful, wearing that lilac blue sweater with the white doves on it she so loved. I was also kind of handsome. We looked as we did in our early 30ths but more mature and radiant. We nuzzled the lilacs and moved closer together. Then we kissed.
That kiss exploded through my soul! It filled my whole body right to the toes and finger tips. It was both intense and passionate but somehow very gentle. I felt our LOVE had somehow enveloped us more fully and made us more ONE. I also felt great peace and calm. Yes, it was like the Peace that passeth all understanding was dwelling in us.
I somehow knew that garden was ours. Pat had prepared it for us, we were joined and meant to live in this garden. It was our mansion in the Kingdom of Heaven that Christ had promised. I was so happy and wanted to stay there with Pat forever. The green, the light blue lilacs, the warmth, the sunlight, and Pat – it was much more than I could ever have imagined.
The dream, Pat, the Peace – I did not want to wake up. Now that was a beautiful dream. Thank you dream master for it.

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Marriage is a trinity


What did Patricia mean by “my beloved Eric joins me”? Well, I must begin with what Pat and I mean by marriage. We believe in the sacrament of marriage making us one entity, a trinity, three persons one entity. Husband, wife and the life-giving spirit of the marriage, are not only enveloped in a dynamic, reciprocal life of self-giving love, but they interpenetrate each other in a totally unique way without losing their distinctiveness as persons. In marriage two human beings have the ability to indwell through the soul’s connection with Christ who is LOVE.

Marriage is about such concepts as diversity, difference and mutuality, rather than with such concept as oneness as a source of power. Despite Paul’s teaching in Eph. 5:28, there is no subordination of the persons – they are equal and Husband and wife each remain distinct individuals. Paul says that husbands should love their wives “as their own bodies” (that is, in the same way as they love their own bodies – Eph. 5:28) not because a husband’s wife is identical with his own physical body. Which would be nonsense. If in submitting to her husband a wife is really just submitting to herself and not to a different person, then her husband has no distinct existence as a person.

Patricia and I were lucky enough to discover that quiet, intense love that is basic to life itself; it is seldom found in real life. We had the eyes to see and the words to tell the truths that are most real to each other.  Pat got it right from the beginning. She was a very deep thinker and wouldn’t commit to love until she had thought it through.  Pat and I were soulmates. Soulmate relationships are far and few but when they do occur, they are for eternity. This kind of relationship is marked by an intense connection between two people, two souls, one that may even be difficult to convey in words. Two people just “get each other” — they finish each other’s sentences, are best friends, and have adopted the us against the world mentality, and a us and God outlook. It feels like we are two pieces of a puzzle fitting perfectly together. In the six months from our first date to our marriage we found each other’s souls and bonded. The sacrament of marriage bound our two souls into a Trinity – one entity, three persons. I still feel that haunting familiarity – our two souls remain bonded even after her death.

Her death has, however created an imbalance in our marriage trinity. Pat has moved into the spiritual plane with God in our marriage. I alone remain in the earthly plan though both Pat and Christ dwell in me.  God is Love and Love is stronger than Death.

Trinty words

With Pat’s death and her very real appearances to me it becomes clear that our journey together continues. Our marriage and love is getting better and better.  Our individuality is part of one whole as the symbol above shows.  GOD is LOVE. The problem is I, still in the physical world, can not yet feel the whole as me – my ego keeps getting in the way. The only self I am conscious of is my own physical self. I don’t know how to shift my ego to the central “Us” in the diagram of our marriage trinity. I need God if I am to become one real being with Pat and our love – I need to become truly us. I have to open my self to both Patricia and God. Pat needs to help me as she is complete, reborn of the spirit, and I am not yet complete. She is helping by meeting me half way and I think that is what she means by my joining her. I am still becoming. I am still reaching for the ends of being and learning to touch her and God through meditation and centering prayer. That is how I will join her while still alive.

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Feeling like old Adam…


Yes, my grief makes me:

“feel like old Adam at the end of that sixth day, / just a boy rubbing his fingers over the fresh/ stitches in his side, wondering why me? why here?”/ (apologies to John Blase).

Last night (June 15/16) she was happy, writing in her journal, “her beloved Eric would soon be with her, joining her on her 71st birthday.”  It was almost too much to bear because I want so much to be with there in heaven with her. The Kingdom of Heaven is within and she lives within me, this keeps me sanely grounded. I believe she meant “We will see what a bright heaven is around us. We are one growing ever stronger in our love and in each other. We will forever feel heaven’s joys in each other more ravishingly shared in company of each other. On her birthday, there will be a revelation bringing us even closer together.” The Kingdom of God is here and now and I’m already in it through her. But if she meant more – she knows when I will come fully home – so be it. God’s will be done on earth as it is in Heaven.

Pat will welcome me up into heaven when my time comes, to meet her there, and to continue to dwell within her there, when my death comes:  three persons – her, me and our love forever united as one – a trinity of love – LOVE is stronger than Death – I will receive from her  a welcome, warmer and more joyous than ever was given, in the outburst of conjugal affection, to any returning from an absence upon earth. I will hear her loving voice again and see her again amid the light of a glorious eternity. We will be at home in our place in Heaven promised by Christ.

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Behold, the kingdom of God is within you.


I believe a person who has Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ as his Savior goes immediately to heaven to be in the presence of the Lord when he dies. Though their body is in the grave and either ashes or decomposing, their soul and spirit (the immaterial part, the real person) goes immediately into the presence of God. – it is the measurable slight weight loss at death. Christ did and he was both man and God.  Scripture said as much, it reports  in Luke 23:43 that He said to the thief on the cross next to Him  “And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.”

And Paul says in Phil. 1:21-23. “For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain. 22 But if I am to live on in the flesh, this will mean fruitful labor for me; and I do not know which to choose. 23 But I am hard-pressed from both directions, having the desire to depart and be with Christ, for that is very much better;”

I admit to also having the desire to be with Christ (and Pat) and live in Christ. But according to Luke 17:21 (KJV) “Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.” You don’t have to die to join your departed spouse – she is in the kingdom of God within you here and now. Pat dwells in me and I dwell in her here and now.

I realize some Christians may call this heresy and cite other texts that support their view. My texts are also in the Bible. Then there is this, a favorite from Cynthia Bourgeault in ‘The Wisdom Jesus’: “A lot of Christians … assume that the Kingdom of Heaven means the place where you go when you die — if you’ve been good. But the problem with this interpretation is that Jesus himself specifically contradicts it when he says, “The Kingdom of Heaven is within you” (that is, here) and “at hand” (that is, now). It’s not later, but lighter — some more subtle quality or dimension of experience accessible to you right in the moment. You don’t die into it: you awaken into it” You reach it by searching within yourself.

I have experienced my wife’s presence within me and I assure you she is NOT sleeping in wait for some future Judgement Day. She is very much awake and communing with me. Nor are the Communion of Saints, whose fellowship we rejoice in during Communion asleep – they are very much awake giving us that fellowship we pray for during the Communion service.  “It is Christ Himself,” Lewis said, “not the Bible, who is the true word of God.” So listen to what your soul is telling you. Don’t use Scripture as a weapon.

 

 

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You don’t have a soul. You are a Soul. You have a body.


I have experienced after-death contacts with Pat while awake or dreaming, via the usual senses. I can almost call these up by prayer and meditation. I become quiet and peaceful in both and that seems to bring Pat right there when I cry her name.

It has occurred to me as Pat’s presence within me grows ever stronger, I will lose seeing her with my physical senses. (Sheldon Vanauken’s second death or severe mercy.)  Souls do not use the physical senses or even words to communicate with each other. Our soul is who we are; it is the entity that unites with another in marriage and with the God within us. “You don’t have a soul. You are a Soul. You have a body.” In other words, personhood is not based on having a body. A soul is what is required. It is eternal. The soul communicates on the ethereal/spiritual/astral level – feeling not speaking.

In marriage, the one entity created by God in the sacrament of marriage is also a soul for all eternity. In the Garden of Eden, there were three present, and there was joy. So, if God is central in a marriage today, there also will be joy. Without God, a true and full oneness is not possible. Pat’s 1970 anniversary poem says it all:

You love me royally, as I love you,

seated together in our garden Kingdom,

keeping up our silent conversation,

clothed in robes of joy of every hue.

For us, our royal love has had no parallel:

It rooted, grew, and like a miracle

spread to the garden where in now we sit,

Clothed in the fragrance of God in it.

 

 And this long miracle is to discover

the inmost me and you,

to nurse no longing for another,

to forge the soul and its desire together

gently, openly and forever.

 

Nothing grows but common flowers

outside our Kingdom’s wall.

Here alone the magic lies.

We ask nothing; we have all.

I find I feel Pat within me most when I am praying, meditating and during the sacrament. 1 Corinthians 10:16 The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ? King James Version (KJV) I find Pat there with Christ and among the communion of saints. I know as her presence in me grows stronger I’m going to depend more on Christ and this communion of souls for her presence and for communication with her (also, on my dreams). Faith in Christ is a gift of God, and we can believe the gospel only when God gives us a new heart that is open to the preaching of His Word (John 3:5; Eph. 2:8). Christ himself is the only true Word of God and He is in our Heart. Of course, everyone who has been given such a heart and presence will finally trust in the wisdom of Christ alone for salvation and that our loved one dwells in us. Now THAT is C. S. Lewis’ meaning of a marriage coming to “God and Us.

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