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jodiJodi A. Zeramby has had a rich history of interacting with the metaphysical community before finding her way to the Lightarian Institute. She has received all Lightarian modalities including Lightarian™ Reiki, Lightarian Rays™ , Lightarian Clearings™, Lightarian AngelLinks™, the Expansion Program, and the Purification Rings™. In fact, she played a leading role with creating the Lightarian Purification Rings™ program. In addition to her role as a Lightworker, Jodi is an author, attorney, and educator. With her education and skills, Jodi offers a practical outlook to the Lightarian modalities.

To learn more about Jodi, please visit our Staff page.

Posted: September 2007

The Power of Intent: Physical Expressions
by Jodi A. Zeramby

Like point of view, perspective, truth, beauty, love, reality, struggle, and heartbreak, grief is very personal. Sure, we can all empathize. Many have experienced grief in some form, particularly adults. Grief taps into our vulnerability, our fear of being alone—of being abandoned by those we love. We rely on these loved ones for support in so many ways. And then they are gone. Most people understand sorrow, the emotions evoked. We can watch a movie, read literature, listen to a song, and have the emotions of grief, sorrow, and loss touch us. We acknowledge on some level that we do not want to be left alone, abandoned, or unsupported by a loved one.

I was very close to my Nana. She had hidden her sickness for what must have been many months. But a day came when she could no longer push down her pain. It was at that point that she asked me to help settle her affairs. Her health deteriorated quickly thereafter. She died nine days later.

I remember while attending to her in ICU, she looked into my eyes. Her chin wobbled as she said in a small voice, “I’m scared.” What could I say to a woman who had attended church daily for so many years? How could I comfort my 75-year wizened grandmother who laughed at everything, even while living a horribly challenging life? If she was uncertain of what would happen to her when she died, who was I to assure her that she would be at peace—free from this life’s burdens, with all its heartaches, disappointments, and pain? Placating her with words neither of us would believe seemed demeaning, so I held her hand tightly, smiled into her eyes, and told her I loved her.

That moment has remained with me. I was not ready to deliver platitudes, even knowing that it was time to let her to go. On all levels—spiritually, mentally, emotionally, and physically—she suffered. Nonetheless, she was scared, and I was heartsick. Why? Why are mortals so very afraid of their mortality? Moreover, why do those left behind feel so bereft? We know that everyone must die at some point, so why do we fear it when Death comes knocking?

Now, I’m not saying that I do not fear death. Having stared death in the face a few times, I can say definitively that I have no desire to leave this plane of existence anytime soon. However, when Death is staring me in the face, when I have no option but to accept His terms, I hope that I will be able to stare unflinchingly. I hope that I will harbor no regrets for perceived failures, no fears for my soul’s future, and no pain during the transition. I have stared at imminent death with anger, with pain, with confusion, and with resolution—I aim to stare at death with peace.

The people left behind to grieve are the ones who must make sense of death. Still, we must do more than wail the loss. Yes, grieving is natural, and in a psychological sense, needed in order to move on. The loss of a loved one forces us to re-evaluate our own lives. For example, we can no longer support and be supported by that person. We can no longer interact. We can no longer express love in the same way. We miss being wrapped in a blanket of love by that person. We miss that person’s energy. We miss that certain scent and distinctive voice, and we miss that person’s essence.

When the energetic connection is severed by death, life’s energetic web shifts with the omission of that life force, even as other lives are added to the web. Edna St. Vincent Millay said, “Where you used to be, there is a hole in the world which I find myself constantly walking around in the daytime, and falling into at night. I miss you like hell.” And so it goes with such a loss—circling the memories, circling the loss, circling and falling into the emotions. It is easy to be overwhelmed. Dickinson’s way of handling such a loss, according to “The Bustle in a House,” was to sweep up the heart and put love away, for “we shall not want to use [them] again until Eternity.” To her, the loss was so profound, so painful, that it was best to shut off all thoughts and emotions for that person. Yet, by doing so, one must shut off all memories associated with that person. Not a very good trade off.

I believe that when a loved one dies, it forces us to accept our own mortality. We then have to answer the challenge—do we stop lollygagging, wasting time as if we had a million years, moving about in a cloud of ignorance, trampling on the feelings of those about [us] (Our Town), or do we embrace the time we have left?

Yet, we spend a good chunk of our time either looking toward the future or into the past, failing to place emphasis and attention on the present. Death pulls us back to the now, reminding us that a person’s lifespan is uncertain.

In Act V of Macbeth, he says,

Out, out, brief candle!

Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player

That struts and frets his hour upon the stage

And then is heard no more.

Shakespeare was inarguably a genius. A person’s life, a brief candle, is transient. It can be snuffed at any time and, if not extinguished while burning, it will eventually burn out, regardless. When we do not fully participate in life, we are poor players of life, mere shadows. I acknowledge, though, that it is not possible to be truly within each moment one hundred percent, without daydreaming, marking time, or indulging in the myriad of emotions, actions, and wasted time of which life consists. Indeed, at times, we indulge ourselves with petty emotions, small events, often overwhelming and superceding much more profound, albeit more subtle, moments in life. We distract ourselves with the intricacies of nothing—the importance of inconsequential moments—and in the process lose precious time which we cannot retrieve. We still live in this world, often living life in an automatic haze, and then suddenly we are reminded that the clock is ticking, and that we too will die one day. If there is any lesson one can learn by a loved one’s death, it is to live life to the fullest extent.

The other morning, I perceived two ravens flying in concert past a building. I then realized that it was one raven and its shadow. The shadow was so sharp, so exact, that my eyes were deceived. That shadow, in that moment, was as real to me as the raven partaking in this reality. It struck me that we are shadows of our Higher Selves. When we are totally present and in the moment, we seem as real, as solid and as substantial as our spirits are in their planes of existence. And so it goes when we hear another person’s “story,” her reality, and make it our own story. It becomes our reality.

After Nana’s death, certain stimuli would produce her visage in my mind’s eye. For example, I taught for ten years at an inner-city high school. Across the Commons (a grassy area surrounded by the main thoroughfares on both sides) stood the Greek orthodox church where my grandmother attended everyday before her death. Whenever a funeral or memorial service occurred, the bells would toll. With their reverberations came thoughts of Nana. During the first few years after her death, these thoughts consisted of Nana’s fearful look in ICU. As time passed, however, this image transposed to other, more pleasurable visions. Now, when the senses are triggered, I see Nana laughing. I attribute this change to processing the grief I originally experienced. So, hope exists, as does the ability to rebound from heartbreak.

The senses can be easily impressed when placing belief in a thought. Scented candles can trigger the olfactory senses, creating sensual stimuli. Suddenly, I am tasting the crispness of cinnamon apple slices, touching the velvety texture of rose petals, or hearing the ocean waves crash against the rocks. Our beliefs, thoughts, and experiences remind us that we smell only a candle. However, without such knowledge and discernment, ours senses may interpret “reality” differently.

I recently heard that singers use different types of microphones to enhance their voices. I must admit that I felt a bit cheated when I realized that performers use special microphones to manipulate how they sound. How can we trust our auditory senses when what we hear from a stage performer is different from how she sounds without the microphone? Conversely, I also understand that having the ability to use modern technology to present talent in the best possible way is a positive development since the talent must exist in order to be enhanced.

Similarly, athletes use the latest advances to aid them in their competitions, such as skis, bicycles, sneakers, and outerwear. Even with the addition of these tools, athletes must take care of their bodies in order to complete their goals—in this case, winning the competition. Likewise, performers must nurture their vocal chords and hone their performances in order to entertain their audiences. I wonder, though, why we need such enhancements. As a society, how did we become so demanding that these performers and athletes must manipulate their talents? Expectations, that sense of entitlement many hold close to their hearts like a badge of honor, can be damaging to those who expect, as well as to those who are expected to deliver. But, that is a discussion for another time.

2007 copyright Jodi A. Zeramby

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