August 5, 2013

End of Life Issues


Yesterday, I did some long distance catching up with a girlfriend in Virginia.  She is associated with the Monroe Institute, and the first topic that I brought up was the death of their executive director Carol de la Herran about a month ago.  Without going into specifics, here we had by all accounts a perfectly healthy woman who was very active with all facets of her job at TMI.  She fell ill with something that couldn’t be accurately diagnosed and passed away after 3 weeks in the ICU.  When something like this happens to someone you know personally, it naturally brings up issues of one’s own mortality.

My friend and I are both single with no children, so the conversation drifted to who would be “in charge” of our medical decisions when or if the time came.  We both have other girlfriends who have our medical power of attorney.  What about alternatives if things get too tough and we want to end it all?  In Holland, euthanasia is legal if the terminally ill patient is coherent enough to sign the papers and the doctor agrees.  Before modern medicine, death gardens were common in England.  Water hemlock, which is highly poisonous, was grown in a corner of the garden, and was used under the same circumstances.  It is a plant that can be found in swampy areas of the US, and I have even seen it growing in a few waterlogged roadside ditches here in Colorado. 

What about having a DNR order?  My mom had one and was almost resuscitated by the paramedics until they saw the sign on her refrigerator.  Apparently there are stickers that you can get to put up everywhere so that this kind of mistake does not happen.  As my sister and I both live in Colorado, and mom was in Chicago, we looked into getting Life Alert for her. She nixed the idea when she found out that if she were to have a medical emergency and had to push the button on the device, the company would call an ambulance and have her taken to the ER, no matter what the problem was.  Going to the ER was no longer something that she wanted to do at that point in her life.

I could go on and on, but the point is this.  Before birth, we set up a plan for our lives which included several exit points from the earthly plane so that we would not be forced to stay until the ultimate final exit.  People who have been gravely ill and recovered have probably hit one of their exit points.  Alternatively, suicide may be a way of using one of these exits before one’s final one.  

Since there are no victims, accidents or coincidences, whatever apparent goofiness that goes on at the time of death has also been planned.   Any pain or suffering on the part of the dying or those close to that person has a definite purpose that all have agreed upon.  According to my friend in Virginia, when Carol’s children tried to communicate with her in her unconscious state, somehow she was able to indicate to them that they were irritating her.  I have seen this over and over with seriously ill people that I have been asked to work with over the years.  Once one is in that final pipeline to the other side, nothing can divert them from their intended outcome.  There is no point in trying to save them or cure them.  Many may need support or reassurance, but that would be up to the individual circumstances. 

Let’s take a different perspective on the final transition by acknowledging that death is not the end but a transition to another state of being.  This must be more than just a mental concept.  One must embody this “belief” fully so that at the end of life there is trust that one is going to the other side to continue on with whatever their path of evolution may be.  The body may be in pain, but that is just the body’s response, not that of the soul or spirit. 

My ideal would be to see people reach a level of spiritual evolution where disease was no longer an issue, and as the time of transition approached, one would know it.  It would then be possible to create the circumstances of the transition, whether one would be surrounded by loved ones or alone in a quiet place.  The body would be dropped as if one was removing a garment.  I suspect that at the time of transition, all present would see a bright flash of light as the spirit was freed from the physical.  I know that this has happened to some saints, sages and avatars in the past and this may be in your life plan, too.   How wonderful that would be! 

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