Phenomenal

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The Other Day Some Friends Dropped By

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At about 8 a.m. on Friday, March 16 — the day I set aside for un-procrastinating — I was about to list the phone calls I planned to make that morning, when Something told me to ditch the list-making and call the credit union. I had given up the idea of asking Paul to cosign a loan for a vehicle — motor home or truck-with-camper — I could travel in this summer, per my plans to take my “one-woman show” on the road. The Something revived the notion, and I didn’t question it, nor did I stop right then to explore the nature of the Something.

I called the credit union, got some useful information from Wanda about interest rates and cosigning. I spent the rest of that day and most of the next following orders, musing from time to time on the very specific instructions I was getting (although by now I remember almost nothing), and beginning to visualize their sources. The work I was doing involved my podcast and blogs as well as the “tour” to churches and other organizations nationwide. I made progress on all this and even made a dent in my e-mail.

If I hadn’t let so much time pass, I could present a clearer image than I’m now going to sketch, but I’ll put down what I remember: First, the sense of a woman sitting nearby — focused not on me but on my chores. I didn’t turn my head to look directly at her; it didn’t occur to me. The sense I had of her was that she wasn’t quite solid. There was no ghostly glow or anything of the sort. She had dark hair, short and nondescript. Her clothes were unremarkable as well — a short-sleeved cotton plaid shirt, a dark skirt. Her solemnity and her tidy inattention to style made me think of intense, intellectual women I’ve known and those I’ve seen in films from the 1930s. I heard her clearly through my left ear, with no difficulty understanding her, though the sound of her voice was as it might be if I held the opening of a water glass against a wall and she were speaking from the other side. But her physical form, or the image of it, was less than a foot to my left.

I also had a sense that she was conferring with a team of researchers on the other side of the nonexistent wall. In my mind I saw three or four young men working at two or more computers and transmitting their findings to her, which she passed along to me as seemed appropriate. Apparently she was extracting only the pertinent information for my use.

This, being the first, was the most vivid of my impressions of Whatever was communicating with me. For the two days following, my “spirit guides” — as such I thought of them, and I can’t imagine any more plausible phenomenon — slipped into and out of my awareness less distinctly. At one point I had a vision, if you will, of Jean Petersen, my first mother-in-law, sitting on the floor pinning a dress pattern to some cloth. She shouted an order or a suggestion toward me, but when I said something in reply she disappeared.

There was a succession of individual appearances — mostly voices, actually — and I remember nothing of what they said. Here’s what I DO remember:

  • I’d be working on something and then I’d nod off, bringing myself to full consciousness as I replied to something that was said to me. On two or three occasions, I “came to” as a result of spilling coffee, out of the cup I was holding, on my hands and legs. During the hours of semiconsciousness, I had the impression that I needed only to intend to hear something for it to occur. In other words, it seemed as if the channel was open, but I didn’t know how to use it. I couldn’t make lucid intentions, and I couldn’t reply without breaking the connection.
  • Sometimes the “speaker” was someone in the present, active in my life, a friend or family member. But when I responded to what was said, I came back to normal awareness. I wondered if the person who had first addressed me would recall having thought or dreamed about me at that time. But the substance of what he or she said would soon be lost, and now I can’t remember who the people were.
  • My visitors did not, as far as I know, appear as a result of any intention on my part. I didn’t ask for them. I hadn’t prayed for them, at least not specifically. But I was open to them, and I am grateful for them, and I want to learn to communicate with them.

I’m fairly sure that all this is important: That it’s not pathological and that I will make progress in this way of knowing.

I suspect it’s connected to my earnest desire to share my songs and poems across the country this summer, and maybe to my podcast and other “spiritual speech.”

And I think that I’m thinking too much.

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