I know I might sound weird, but in many ways I feel more connected to my parents after their passing. I confess that I haven’t visited the cemetery since their passing – I just don’t feel that they’re there. Just today, as I attempted to sort some papers, I found my Mum has preserved a lot of quotes, poems and stories including ones that I’ve written down. Both my parents loved collecting inspiring stories, poems and quotes. I know where I got that from! But more importantly, I find myself conversing with them in my head, hoping they’re happy, asking them to pray for me and sometimes just recalling crazy things. Now with the recent passing of my Uncle, I seem to have a chat with him too. I was wondering if connecting with those who have passed away is normal behaviour.
While it certainly seems like a way of coping with grief, but could there be more?
Connecting With Those
Who Have Passed
Connecting With Those Who Have Passed Away
Today I’d like to share with you something I read recently from Thich Nhat Hanh, from his book “No Death, No Fear”.
The day my mother died I wrote in my journal, “A serious misfortune of my life has arrived.” I suffered for more than one year after the passing away of my mother. But one night, in the highlands of Vietnam, I was sleeping in the hut in my hermitage. I dreamed of my mother. I saw myself sitting with her, and we were having a wonderful talk. She looked young and beautiful, her hair flowing down. It was so pleasant to sit there and talk to her as if she had never died. When I woke up it was about two in the morning, and I felt very strongly that I had never lost my mother. The impression that my mother was still with me was very clear. I understood then that the idea of having lost my mother was just an idea. It was obvious in that moment that my mother is always alive in me.
I opened the door and went outside. The entire hillside was bathed in moonlight. It was a hill covered with tea plants, and my hut was set behind the temple halfway up. Walking slowly in the moonlight through the rows of tea plants, I noticed my mother was still with me. She was the moonlight caressing me as she had done so often, very tender, very sweet… wonderful! Each time my feet touched the earth I knew my mother was there with me. I knew this body was not mine but a living continuation of my mother and my father and my grandparents and great-grandparents. Of all my ancestors. Those feet that I saw as “my” feet were actually “our” feet. Together my mother and I were leaving footprints in the damp soil.
From that moment on, the idea that I had lost my mother no longer existed. All I had to do was look at the palm of my hand, feel the breeze on my face or the earth under my feet to remember that my mother is always with me, available at any time.
Do you find yourself connecting with those who have passed away?
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I have lost my grandparents but I was never close to them and neither were they. My Dadi was my favorite in my childhood but by the time she expired there had already been a disconnect. My Nana-Nani were close to their son’s children and my Dada-Dadi were close to their other son’s children. My brother and I only had our parents. Therefore, I have not lost lost anyone dear. But, I have heard my mother speak of her father in a similar way even after many years passed after his death.
I liked reading the excerpt from Thich Nhat Hanh’s book.
Thank you, Corinne, for adding my post link here 😉
Yes, Corinne in many a ways. My father passed away a couple of years back. THere are times when a voice rings within me, especially during times of making a tough decision. Its actually quite heartening that I am able to connect with him.
Esha M Dutta
I do believe we have a very strong connection with people who’ve shared a close bonding with us in their lifetimes, and this very often extends beyond death. My mom’s youngest sister was a very dear confidante and friend of mine as she was only a decade or so older than me and consequently was more like a sister and a soul mate. She passed away almost 23 years ago but I see her often in my dreams even now and find her presence in my life in ways that continue to baffle me. So, I can only nod in agreement when you mention how you feel you are connected to your parents and your uncle after their passing. Perfectly normal, I’d say!
Mahati ramya adivishnu
I don’t know really about the grief as I haven’t experienced but if that is one way to cope up, then it is the best way, right?
What a beautiful thought that they never left. My grandfather passed away when I was around 3. A friend passed away when I was 28. I see them in my dreams. But I always see them on the other side.
I like to believe that they are happy
God will see to it, won’t he.
I do connect with the loved ones who are no longer physically present and believe they do send us signs or visit from time-to-time reminding of their presence in our lives. That’s true and see nothing weird in that. Recently, I shared the experience with a friend who felt the same about a common friend passing away decade back. I am so glad you wrote about it, Corinne.