Lessons from the Reading Room with Hazel McGuiness: A Different Journey

Here we are again, back in The Reading Room with the very lovely and talented Hazel McGuiness, discussing a topic that’s not only difficult to talk about, but also to explain.

Hazel and I begin our conversation by admitting that the concept of “life after death” is not only a challenging one, but is a topic that not everyone will understand, accept, or agree with. Hazel tells me, “The idea of life after death is one way that some may choose to help deal with their grief, however, it is not the only way.”

Timely as all of my lessons are with Hazel, as I sit and take in her incredible energy, I find myself stuck in grief. John, a dear friend who passed suddenly just before Christmas, had taken a piece of our hearts with him, and I found myself again engulfed in grief and sadness. Hazel challenged me to accept the notion that John was still very much here with the ones who loved him, and the ones he loved, and so th discussion began.

“John is coming to you through music,” states Hazel. I was struck, as I immediately knew that indeed, through music, John’s energy was already here.

Scientifically, this type of energy is called “Biocentrism”. Doctor and philosopher Robert Lanza explains the science; “Biocentrism extends this idea, suggesting that life is a flowering adventure that transcends our ordinary linear way of thinking. Although our individual bodies are destined to self-destruct, the “me” feeling is just energy operating in the brain. But this energy doesn’t go away at death. One of the surest principles of science is that energy never dies; it can neither be created nor destroyed.”

In the 21 years that Hazel has been delivering lessons from The Reading Room, she unequivocally believes that our loved ones cross over in peace and love, where their energy goes to rejuvenate, recharge, and come back to us in a new form.

For us, it’s we who are the ones left here to grieve. It’s a tremendous and painful loss, one which tears at our hearts and can leave us broken. But for our loved ones who’ve passed, it’s a different journey. They’re sad to leave us, yet happy to be, as Hazel puts it, “going home”. A poem by Henry Van Dyke titled “I Am Standing Upon The Seashore” was read at my father’s funeral, and has resonated with me ever since:

“I am standing upon the seashore.
A ship at my side spreads her white
sails to the morning breeze
and starts for the blue ocean.

She is an object of beauty and strength.
I stand and watch her until at length
she hangs like a speck of white cloud
just where the sea and sky come
to mingle with each other.

Then, someone at my side says;
“There, she is gone!”
“Gone where?”
Gone from my sight. That is all.
She is just as large in mast and hull and spar
as she was when she left my side,
and she is just as able to bear her
load of living freight to her destined port.

Her diminished size is in me, not in her.
And just at the moment when someone
at my side says, “There, she is gone!”
There are other eyes watching her coming,
and other voices ready to take up the glad shout;
“Here she comes!”

There are people waiting for them, missing them, and loving them. It’s this notion that they are “home”, in a loving and happy space that allows their energy to take new shape and come back to us. Many of us believe that they come to us through signs such as cardinals, butterflies, lady bugs, dimes, or even through electronics. Hazel herself has worn out countless computers, telephones, and watches, as the amount of energy she transfers while she is working can at times be quite intense.

To simplify a concept of life after death, Hazel shares with me; “It’s like when you walk into a room and you feel “something”, whether it’s high or low, heavy or light, it’s the energy that’s surrounding you. This energy we feel – the chill that runs down the back of your neck when we’re struggling and missing our loved ones, or at a celebration, and you’re missing the one you wanted with you on a special day – that is their energy, letting you know that they are there with you, still very much loving you.”

Interestingly enough, as I sit here at my desk reading through my interview notes, I’m playing a record, good ‘ol vinyl, and it’s Debbie Boone singing “You Light Up My Life”, an album that as a little girl I used to listen to with my mother. I would have been about 9 at the time, and we’d be together at the cottage. We’d put this record on, just the two of us, and sing it over, and over again.

Thanks Mom. I love you too.

Next on my turntable will be Patsy Cline’s “Crazy”, followed by “Bob Dylan’s “Wagon Wheel”.

Thanks John. I know you’re here. In grief, it is possible to process through it, and begin to build a new relationship with your loved one who has crossed over. I would like to think that the relationship doesn’t end, it merely changes. At least, that is the hope.

Written by: Kelli M. Maddocks

Author: LivingSpaces

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