Ingrid’s message

“I am perplexed. How can an angel suffer?”

– Angel of the Desert, Paula Schlier

Is it not love that we must follow in all its colors and shades?
Is it not the absence of love that creates hell on earth?
It is the grayness of all that makes a human being suffer.
But if we choose to step over our fears and ideologies then we can experience perfect heaven while walking on earth.

Yesterday I had undergone a test and I do not think that I passed this very test:
While walking to work, I encountered a Lady who is living on the streets. In one year I have never met her, even though I am walking along those streets quite often. Others I have crossed many times, but not her. She asked me if I would take a poem off her for a hot chocolate. I said that I had to go to work but that I would give her some money for the poem. She gave me one for good luck. But instead of heading off very quickly, I listened to her. She told me about all the things she had learned in life and she was very educated. I was starting to wonder how an educated person could be living on the streets now. How was that possible? So I said to her: “Maybe you should ask the angels.” She answered that she was doing this all the time and that she was talking to God. So I responded that maybe they had a message for her. While we talked something seemed to change in her and I looked at her. I knew this was a test of a sort. Then she asked me if she could come home with her for a night on the couch.
In came all the things I had learned as a child: Don’t bring strangers home, she could take something,… But first and foremost it made me intensely uncomfortable. I was starting to wonder whether this was my uncomfortableness or hers. While she continued to talk she said: “I would love to hear more about the angels from you.”
I said that we would have to talk to the angels and find each others’ paths again- they would organize it.
But what weighs heavily on my soul today is the fact that I used a little white lie: I said to her that my apartment was rented (which it is) and that I could not have guests, which is not true. I should just have said to her that it made me feel uncomfortable that she asked me this.
I asked her if she did not have a public place to stay, but she explained that she had two bullies who usually took her money. It dawned on me that she also was undergoing a test of standing up for herself in front of the bullies. So we were both being tested at the same time. We agreed to use the help of the angels as our messengers.
But before we parted ways, her voice changed a bit and she had a very ancient mode of expression. She asked me first simply: “Do you have a totem animal?” I answered that I had two. She told me hers and then she said: “Also this she can do.” It was said without judgement or any form of suspicion, in a very neutral tone. Just a simple statement. Another person had used the exact same expression a few months earlier for my fable for Holy Scriptures. It was said in the exact tone and voice. It was an ancient phrase. Who would use such a phrase?

When we parted ways, I had carried away Ingrid’s burdens.

Today I was wondering what the lesson of this encounter was. The old adage of setting boundaries? Or maybe I realized that it is easy to give people money, but it does not change their set of behavioral patterns. It was maybe to load off my personal guilt. I also saw that this would be another possibility for me if I did not have a job, but it had no resonant frequency of fear anymore. I had been homeless twice over the last years and both times I was offered very comfortable shelter by friends! So that fear has disappeared and I feel that the karmic burden has lessened through that. I do not know, but in this moment I felt it was sincere to give her the money as she had given me a personal poem that she had written (which is very deep and meaningful by the way). I felt even happy about it. Partially I felt invaded by being asked. The second test was my lie- I did not pass. So it will come up again. The third lesson was that one can learn many things, have a million talents, but if one does not work with one’s talents then it is a waste of precious time and resources. But the last lesson of this encounter was that divinity is everywhere and that it was a message that we both received. It was that one sentence when I knew for sure that it was a message: “Also this she can do.”

Maybe I do not love enough yet to let someone come into my place, to offer them shelter for a night. Maybe I am still too weak. It felt as if something old left me that I had carried along the way.

I will discover with time what it meant. I need to meet Ingrid again.


Vanessa

Free will

“Lord, make me a channel of Your peace, that
Where there is hatred, I may
bring love;…”

– St. Francis of Assisi


Each human being that is born into this world, has a million angels by their side. They watch over us, guide us, and interfere only when absolutely necessary.
It is for the free will of a human being that they may interfere continuously or rather aid. When we are born, even though we are already divine emanations, we are given free will to experience life as we choose. Only when we turn our face inwards and listen to that silent voice that is oh so persistent, can we finally free ourselves from the shackles of self-imposed suffering. Because also suffering is often free will or a karmic imprint that we must go through. It does not mean that it is a punishment, but as explained in the little story of Tashi and the demon, sometimes demons serve to wake us up. We are capable of so much love, yet we forget it all. And as Rabia of Basra once said, it is only through suffering and doubt that we awaken to great faith. If we look into history, many Saints and Sages, even though highly enlightened, suffered many physical ailments. Hildegard von Bingen, besides her intense visions of God, was said to have been terribly ill. I often wonder what it must have been like for her to receive this intense light, these visions, and carry out these visions. I read a book about her once and she must have possessed immense internal strength. Besides her periods of illness she wrote, she studied plants, constructed an abbey and was never too tired to pray! I cannot imagine what it must have been like.

And so it is with the human being that we have free will to get lost in materialism, to throw away our life in the pursuit of strange things that make us none-the-richer on the inside. You know that you are getting closer to divinity when your wishes start becoming true and you no longer have any attachment towards them. It is very bizarre to experience for it is like a puzzle that one must unravel to embark on any path. The path of life itself. Sometimes one struggles with their ego again or their thoughts, sometimes one gets lost in old habits again or the mind digs out pieces of the past. It is sometimes a maddening affair. One year I remember that I was walking down the streets of Luxembourg and struggling with some of my behavioral patterns that I used to have when I was younger. I felt great shame overcome me, but then the message was conveyed internally: God has already forgiven you.
So we must learn to forgive ourselves, because if we are sincere in our wish to embark on a path, then we are forgiven a long time before the mind encounters difficulties. We are pardoned immediately for it is only the human being that can hold onto grudges and believes in punishment, much like with feelings of guilt and shame.

We must accept our own free will. That is all one needs.
When one comprehends this, we are free to choose and take responsibility for our actions and inactions in life. Only then we will see the path being cleared.


Have you chosen free will lately?


Vanessa

Exposure

“I am telling you, Tobias: Nothing is as much of a failure as success. All life is reinforced by exposure and not through strength. Through smallness, not through might the human being may win.”

– Angel of the Desert, Paula Schlier

In the darkest hours we come to terms with our own weaknesses. Those are the ones we must overcome. Neither through might nor through fight we can win. It is the art of compassion, of patience, and of unbeatable faith. One cannot waiver. One must remain steadfast. In the face of adversity all must go through the fires of purification.
We cannot expect to go through the process of life without trials for we would never become more understanding. We cannot expect to go through life without pain for it is that exact pain that makes us understand others. We cannot expect to go through life without experiencing ugliness for it is that exact ugliness that makes us recognize beauty. But that beauty is not an external thing- it is a beauty that resides within us and then transpires to our outer world. We must wander in darkness at times in order to recognize that the luminosity that we all carry is so much larger than this small portion of obscurity. But even when the obscuration may seem to overtake, we must hold on to that hope of light.
For how could we stand in that light for if it wasn’t for that challenge of darkness. Your hope, your love must become so strong that even the harshest of trials cannot push you off of your path. You must continue. It is not even a question of returning or changing.

Al you must do is to stay steadfast. You must return to how you were when you were a child. You must become innocent and beautiful, you must have full trust in life and all of its obstacles and obscurations. For only if you let yourself fall off of the cliff, you will be able to trust divine consciousness.

Can you do that?


Vanessa

We are endless

One morning I woke up and wanted
Out of my misery.
I did not know what to
Belive
In Life.
One person granted wishes,
another one would set you free,
yet another one could cure
Your misery.

Healers and shamans alike,
I forgot about my own might.
I gave my power away
To someone else’s mystery.
What was my own I did not know
And bought into the whole
Show.

Got lost on the way
To my inner sanctuary.

So now let me take back
My inner strength.
I only adhere to love
And only that is my own.
No healer, no shaman, no witch,
Has access to that which
We all possess.

Spirits unconditional love,
A Higher Self
That we must trust.
No other thing
No other person
Can make one happy.
I only trust my inner light
And dwell on eternity
That has always been
And always will be.



Have you trusted your inner power recently?
If not, return to yourself. The answer lies within.



Vanessa

Tashi and the demon

Last week, as I was shuffling to work, I passed by one of the book shelves that are residing in the city. It had just been filled and I like taking a look at what’s inside. Sometimes weeks pass and there is nothing that peaks my interest and then there are weeks when I find a good amount of books that resonate. It is always as if the book shelve itself speaks to me.

One of those days I found a thin and long book with a beautiful photography of a Tibetan boy. Prayer flags were happily floating in the background. Some of the mountains that I remember so well, I could almost picture myself living there or being the boy in the picture. The title read “Tashi’s New World”. It struck a cord so I took it with me.

On Sunday afternoon when the city had quietened down and people are staying at home more often, the energies of the world had settled, I picked it up and read the story.
It talked about a little boy named Tashi who was living in a village in the mountains. One day he was in the hut with his grandmother when a demon came swooshing through the chimney. Tashi only felt that something was going on whereas his grandmother saw the demon and was shaking with fright. She asked the demon why he would want to harm the boy. The demon answered that his father had trimmed a bush that he was living in and did not honor him. Therefore the boy must pay- it was his karma. The boy fell terribly ill and when he woke up many weeks later his world had turned dark. He had been blinded by the demon.

After a few weeks Tashi learned that his world was not so dark, but rather a new world full of sounds, smells, and touch: He knew who was passing by when and where, heard the different animals and was able to feel their states of emotion. He started to tell the most beautiful stories to other children and when they closed their eyes they saw the images right in front of them as if they were real. As he was not allowed to go to school because of his blindness he was offered a job as a goatherd. He knew where all the goats were hiding because he could hear their different sounds of the bells.
He was very happy with his life until one day two women passed by and told him about a school for blind children that they would open in Lhasa. They told him to come once it was open.
Tashi became overjoyed and told his demon about it. It would be wonderful. But afterwards he started having doubts that he may have dreamt the whole thing up.

A few years later a caravan came to his hometown that would make its way to Lhasa. He remembered the two women and the school for the blind. Even though he was troubled by doubts, he asked to go with the caravan. An old nomad became his friend and Tashi knew he had to find his dharma. The first nights were horrible for him as he was taken away from his demon, from his family, and friends, and also lost his job as a goatherd. He cried bitterly out of his loneliness and for the things he had lost.
After many months of hard travel they finally arrived in Lhasa and to their surprise found a blind boy who led them to the school.
Tashi stayed for many years and when he finally returned to visit his family, he had many stories to tell. As he was with his teacher, they decided to greet Tashi’s demon, give him some food, and tell him that he was protected during a night when demons were traditionally chased out of their hidings in Tibet. He thanked his demon for making his life so filled with joy and adventure.
The next morning the food was gone, but no one knew whether it was Tashi’s demon, the goats, or maybe one of the other animals that roamed the planes….


We never know what demons may be good for. Sometimes a situation may seem very horrible but out of it something so beautiful will be created that we may never have experienced that beauty unless it was for our own inner demons. In my heart I would say that Tashi would have never been able to appreciate going to school as much as he did when he was blind. When everything runs “normal” we hardly ever give any second thought to what we already have, but what we are lacking.

And so maybe you should feed the demon in your home or garden to appease them and to give you a hand… You never know what may come out of it


Vanessa

A day fo benevolence

“Who if I cried out would hear me among the angels’ hierarchies? And even if one of them pressed me suddenly against his heart: I would be consumed in that overwhelming existence.”

  • Rainer Maria Rilke

What an intense year it has been for all of us. It has passed by so rapidly that I feel that I had hardly time for anything else, but moving in circles. Covid made it all bizarre, as if caught in limbo. The war in the Ukraine overshadowing Europe once more, prices are on the rise, but on the other hand it made people become more aware of what they truly want in life.

A few months ago a young guy (maybe 16 or 17) came into the store with his friend. They were both looking for gifts for their Mum. As the store was almost empty I helped them pick out gifts. This guy did not have enough money, but because he was so enamored by the package, I told him I will gift the rest of the money to him. It wasn’t much. Just two euros. He felt embarrassed, but accepted the gift. He promised to come back and give me the money. I said that it’s okay- it is a gift.
I had forgotten all about it and months had passed. Last week there was a day when I felt that something extraordinary was happening: A client came in and he asked me if I spoke english and if I could help him. I asked him where he was from. He said he was from Egypt. So I exclaimed that it must be extremely beautiful. He said that it was and that he loved living there. He gave me a bookmark with Egyptian hieroglyphs on it as a gift, as if he knew that I liked reading and had none. I thanked him and was wondering what was going on. What a nice surprise gift.
A few hours later the young guy from a few months earlier came back in and said that he had been waiting for me to have a shift. He gave me back the two euros. I felt very touched that someone so young would keep his word. Of course he was starting to look for another gift, so we chatted a little bit. He said he would come back next week when I would work, so we could pick out another gift for his Mum for her birthday.

Then another Lady came in and said that she was very difficult with choosing gifts and that apparently everyone at the store has had issues with giving her a hand. She wanted for gift baskets. So I said to her: Why don’t you go and pick what you like and then we’ll see what we can make out of it. I asked the Divine Mother for help so that it would turn out great.
And it did. It was very easy. She picked everything herself and said she would run some errands while I was making the baskets. It all went smoothly and I told her that it was my energy, that’s why she found everything and it wasn’t a problem. She looked at me and said: “Indeed, this is right. Because with everyone else it was so difficult.” We smiled at each other in complicity and she came to the back with her car and we loaded the gifts in.

Why am I telling you this story?
Because no matter what you are grappling with, may it be foul health, an awakening process that is lasting like a million years, maybe you are struggling with emotions like anger, or helplessness. Maybe you are feeling lonely. I would like to tell you that, no matter what, there is always hope and that there are people out there who will uplift you, even when you are having a hard time. Even when you are having dark moments of doubt and life seems to be giving you a hard time, there are people who will speak to you and you will feel as if touched by Grace, by compassion, and benevolence.

That was such a day. Amidst my own difficult year, there is light that is shining brightly and I felt deeply touched that day by small amounts of benevolence and little miracles of every day life.


Have you experienced benevolence lately?



Vanessa

This place is a dream

“This place is a dream. Only a sleeper considers it real. Then death comes like dawn, and you wake up laughing at what you thought was your grief.”

– Rumi

Death came knocking at my door.
Not prepared, I was pleading for more
Life.
She said: “Do not fear me, for I am a part of Him.”
I answered: “Is this not a trick to take me on a whim?”
She felt furious and took my ego in disguise,
I laughed and cried,
I kid you not.

She took her scythe and chopped off my foot.
I screamed at her in agony,
Why was she doing this to me?

She said you must suffer to be reborn
Unless you try darkness
You may never see light.
I nodded my head and this made me sway.

Then I remembered the trick
A teacher taught me:
I prayed to God with all my might
And all at once
The angels came to my aid,
they took away my fears
And helped me to surrender
In tears.
I wailed and sang hail to Grace,
I wondered why I had forgotten
Their mighty embrace.

Death departed with her scythe,
My foot restored,
I said: “You were the devil in disguise.”
Don’t taunt me with your impertinent
Gaze
For I know who you are now
and I surrender only to God
And follow my own ways.

Relieved I sat surrounded by the angels’ wings
Their embrace so soft
Yet put me up to their strings
That lead to heaven.



Vanessa

Don’t leave me, even for an hour…

“Don’t leave me, even for an hour, because 
then the little drops of anguish will all run together, 
the smoke that roams looking for a home will drift 
into me, choking my lost heart.”

– Pablo Neruda


Yesterday I experienced emotional pain. Another date, another strange experience. How come, I asked myself and looked into my heart. It said it was not the right one. People are scared of love.

A little while later at work a co-worker explained her view on love: She said that sometimes one does not need love to get married. Looking at her quizzically she expanded further. I shall spare you the details. This is no form of judgement, just an observation. She was thoroughly convinced of this idea.
When she left it took me a while to recover from this idea of hers. I contemplated it nonetheless, giving a fair chance to it. Why not? If I only ever see my point of view, how can I be certain that another’s point may not hold some form of validity.
But after a while I realized that I disagree for I thoroughly believe in love. In an eternal love.
Love that is so strong that nothing can break it. A love that is like fire, igniting all those around me. A love so intense that people must become blinded by the very fact that one is alive and burning with this love. A love that is so shining and brilliant, yet soft and beautiful that all must perish in its vicinity. No darkness can be left in its radar.

In the night I was sent yet another dream of a man I do not know and that love between us was so intense that no one could come in between. That is what I know to be true in my heart. It is an intense love, one that is passionate yet liberating, one that is quiet and peaceful, one that allows mistakes and the forgiveness of them. It allows for peace to enter one’s heart and to let this tremendous love unfold.

So no, I do not believe that one does not need love to get married. One needs tremendous amounts of love to get into any relationship of any sort.
How could you stay with someone who does not love you as you are?
It would be impossible.

So please love as if there was no tomorrow.
Do not listen to others who have lost their way.
Love as if the world was full with it, because that is the nature of God.
And love is the one thing that is always accessible wherever you are at and whatever situation you may encounter.
It is the only cure there is.

Be love. Do not get discouraged by others.
Stay there.


Vanessa

You

“I saw my Lord with the eye of the heart
I asked: ‘Who are You?’
He replied, ‘You’.”

  • Mansur al-Hallaj

In darkness we must walk for
A while
Diminished by our own pride.

For what else would there be
Left to do
But to adore You
Who is always near.

We forgot for
We became ignorant,
But all that is left
Is You and You.

If I cannot love You
I do not love myself.
If I cannot believe in You
I do not believe in myself.

What would the world be
Without You?
An unpopulated stream
Of masses that are unconscious.