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© copyright 2007 Betsy L. Angert

They say, "Only the good die young."  Perhaps, that is true.  My Mom took her last breathe on Earth twenty years earlier than many of her relatives.  You may recall that only weeks ago, a dear departed from my life.  Phillip passed just more than a month after his fifty-fifth birthday.  Days ago, the nation was told that a fifty-seven year young Elizabeth Edwards has an incurable cancer.  Might she too perish before she has had time to truly live.  Each day we lose our younger generation to war.  Drugs take too many lives.  Anna Nicole Smith and her offspring Daniel left G-d's green Earth very recently.  

Today we learn that Tony Snow, White House Press Secretary has a lesion on his liver the outlook is not good.  Might the purely partisan Progressives ponder, 'Is this man among the splendid.'

I believe we all are divine.  Our politics, or our lifestyles do not determine our worth.  We are all equally revered in the eyes of any Lord.  Science makes no distinction.  However, I do wonder, does a holy being decide whether one must pass, when, or why.  

Does Free Will play a more important role?  What of those deaths that are caused by another?  Is human insanity the stronger influence?

As I reflect on cancer, I continually conclude, much of it is environmental.  I do not know why some are more susceptible.  Theories abound.  Living close to electrical wires, near freeways, on the banks of polluted waterways seem to have an effect.

Habits can be killers.  Smoking might take a life; then again, it might not.  Imbibing alcoholic beverages does damage.  Yet, not all "drinkers" die from this "dis"-ease.  Food sustains life and destroys it.  Illnesses such as diabetes are often the result of overindulgence.

Another adage states everything happens for a reason.  Is the rationale for our passing plausible?  

When we lose a parent, particularly at an early age, is there some lesson to be learned?  If a mother and father depart, each before we are adults, the heart often becomes hardened.  People often become protective.  An individual that shuts out pain, or attempts to, usually creates greater heartaches for themselves and others.  Yet, fear of being alone or abandoned, left behind again, often causes us to hurt ourselves.

I believe much of what we do gives rise to our own agony.  It seems to me, so much of what kills comes from within.  Perchance, that too is as it must be.  We know not why we feel as we do.  Our lessons loom large.  They can be painful, and all consuming.  

At times, we drastically decide to take our own lives.  Numerous individuals think suicide does not make sense.  I can only surmise that those that journey into jeopardy are led there for reasons that remain a mystery to most of us.

On many occasions what cause us to cease, to exist no more as Earthlings is not within our control, even when we think it is.  Thus, I ask again, 'Why must we leave this life before we think we are done?'

I personally must believe in Karma.  I do not think life is the luck of the draw.  Actually, I do not think luck is a valid determinate of much, if anything.  I trust that we are goodness.  When we share that quality with all others, when we care, sincerely, when we give to all others equally, and when grace is our guide time and again, then the powers that be honor us.

We may depart from this planet sooner than we wish to.  We may leave loved ones behind.  However, unbeknownst to us, our work is done here.  We have achieved what we could not imagine.  Destiny calls us.  There are other lessons to learn.  

I believe that we may have to live on Earth again.  Our bodily presence may differ.  Perchance we will encounter those we met in this life in our next, perhaps not.  Those others may have completed this path.  Their trail may deviate from ours.  Nevertheless, they will always be with us.  

People are our foundation in this existence and though our physical memory of them may fade as we enter the next generation, they are our history.  Mentors, muses, and mystical influences come in many and every shape and form.

I believe that we must have faith.  Those that pass are good.  They have come into our sphere for good.  We are changed for the better to have known them, even if we disagree with their politics or lifestyles.  We need not stay silent when people perform, postulate, or practice in ways that we think inhumane; actually, we must not.
Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.
~ Martin Luther King Junior

Let us speak of the taboos . . . sex, religion, and politics.  Please discuss what disgusts you . . . abuse of drugs, alcohol, or power.  Chat about life and death.  Learn what you can while you live.  For if you believe, as I do, what you do not garner in this human form now, will have to be found in a later experience.  The next may not be as pleasant.  

Nirvana, the attainment of enlightenment comes when we know to our core what is correct.  For me, love and peace are the only absolutes.  I ask that we work towards these.

Elizabeth Edwards, Tony Snow, my thoughts are with you.  I trust that you are traveling down the path that is best for you.  In this human form I cannot know where you will go.  I only hope that we will meet again in a wondrous world filled with love and peace.

Peace and Passing . . .

  • "Death Ends a Life, Not a Relationship." In Memory of . . . By Betsy L. Angert.  BeThink.org.  March 11, 2007
  • Tests Show Snow's Cancer Has Returned, By Peter Baker.  Washington Post. Tuesday, March 27, 2007; 11:34 AM
  • pdf Tests Show Snow's Cancer Has Returned, By Peter Baker.  Washington Post. Tuesday, March 27, 2007; 11:34 AM
  • White House Spokesman Snow has Recurrence of Cancer (Update6), By Roger Runningen.  Bloomberg. March 27, 2007
  • The Elizabeth Effect. By Chris Cillizza.  Washington Post. Tuesday, March 27, 2007
  • Edwards: Wife's cancer returns, campaign goes on. Cable News Network. March 23, 2007
  • Reality TV star Anna Nicole Smith dies at 39.  Cable News Network. February 9, 2007
  • Inquest Into Death of Anna Nicole Smith's Son, Daniel, Begins.  Fox News. Tuesday, March 27, 2007
  • Betsy L. Angert
    BeThink.org

    Originally posted to Bcgntn; BeThink on Tue Mar 27, 2007 at 01:43 PM PDT.

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    Comment Preferences

    •  May we all rest in peace. n/t (7+ / 0-)

      It is only the giving that makes us what [who] we are. - Ian Anderson. Betsy L. Angert
      BeThink

      by Bcgntn on Tue Mar 27, 2007 at 01:41:03 PM PDT

    •  A beautiful diary. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      joynow, Bcgntn, Berenice Bobby

      Restores my faith in us all after seeing some of the silly diaries, probably mostly by young folks.

      When we remember and feel the emotional pain we all have had in any well lived life, we are able to find compassion for others, no matter who they are, because we all are human.  The one constant is suffering, for we all desire, and desires either or fulfilled or not.  Attachment leads to joy and pain, but we attach nonetheless, for we are human.

      Thank you for a wonderful dairy.

      "We don't need to redefine the Democratic Party; we need to reclaim the Democratic Party." John Edwards 2/22/07

      by TomP on Tue Mar 27, 2007 at 02:04:30 PM PDT

      •  I thank you soooooo much for your kind words . . (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        joynow, marykk, TomP, Berenice Bobby

        Dear TomP . . .

        I thank you soooooo much for your kind words and for sharing your thoughts.  

        I believe we can disagree without disparaging a life.  We all have worth.  We teach.  We learn.  We may pass from an Earthly existence; yet, we never die.

        I think when we are younger there is a sense of right and wrong.  As we age, we realize these exist as one.  They are called "growing greater."  Sadly, I recently saw younger souls so hurt by early losses, they are obsessed with the possibility of not feeling.  Thus, realizing may be delayed.  

        Oh, how painful being human can be.

        It is only the giving that makes us what [who] we are. - Ian Anderson. Betsy L. Angert
        BeThink

        by Bcgntn on Tue Mar 27, 2007 at 02:20:52 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  How true (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Bcgntn, Berenice Bobby

          I believe we can disagree without disparaging a life.  We all have worth.  We teach.  We learn.  We may pass from an Earthly existence; yet, we never die.

          I think that's called "maturity."

          If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

          by marykk on Tue Mar 27, 2007 at 03:13:19 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I am grateful for your thoughtful statement. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            marykk, Berenice Bobby

            Dear marykk . . .

            I am grateful for your thoughtful statement.  Sadly, some think to disagree or discuss issues of concern equates to not "loving" the other.  I think calm conversation, even if the opinions differ, advances knowledge.  

            If we blindly accept actions that seem hurtful, then, in my mind, we are not demonstrating a sincere trust; people can and will grow.

            Throwing flames ensures there will be no evolution.  As the Buddhist believe the middle path is the pinnacle.

            It is only the giving that makes us what [who] we are. - Ian Anderson. Betsy L. Angert
            BeThink

            by Bcgntn on Tue Mar 27, 2007 at 06:40:23 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  Wow (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Bcgntn

      that's deep.

      If you are looking for Truth, you better be ready to change your mind.

      by jimraff on Tue Mar 27, 2007 at 02:16:37 PM PDT

      •  I thank you for reading and reflecting (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jimraff

        Dear jimraff . . .

        Depth can be good, I hope.  At least, I prefer it to apathy.  I thank you for reading and reflecting.  Your comment is much appreciated.

        It is only the giving that makes us what [who] we are. - Ian Anderson. Betsy L. Angert
        BeThink

        by Bcgntn on Tue Mar 27, 2007 at 02:22:47 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Thank you. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Bcgntn, Berenice Bobby

      Lovely, thoughtful.
      Life and death. We aren't very good with death, treating it as some alien thing that happens just to the unlucky few.

      I thought about how there were many people who were commenting on the choice the Edwards made who would likely die before Elizabeth did. Not all of us get warning or have a name for what is likely to take us. It could be you or me and yet while we are alive we live. Because our lives are finite we don't then live in fear but rather...live with all the more love and truth, cherishing.
      All Elizabeth or Tony or so many others have really lost is the illusion of certainty.

      When there are young kids losing parents it does make my heart ache all the more. Last week...well OK 26 years ago...my 4 year old son lost his father. The memory of my son's anguish comes back to me as though it was last week.

      He had an idea what death was. We first talked about it the year before when a friend died and more recently talked about it often as we walked past a graveyard on a daily route.

      When I told him about his dad he let out a keening wail, ran into a corner and wrapped around himself accepting no comforting touches. He'd look up with such pain, crying out for his daddy. He asked me to crash the car on the way home so we could go be with him.
      The memory of his pain is much stronger than the memory of my own.

      But I will say that with such full and open grieving also comes a fuller healing.

      I could go a lot of ways right now...part of me wants to get into the "talks" my psychic preschooler started having with his daddy and the oddities around that.

      But I will go the more practical way. I didn't want my son more hurt, wanted to make up for the pain or something and started doing that the wrong way. I started spoiling him, not wanting to say no, not wanting to discipline. He started getting pretty bratty but I didn't change my ways...

      Until a few months after the death when we were in a store. He saw a paddle in the shape of a hand and asked what the words on it said. "Mother's Helping Hand". He told me to buy it. I just walked on until it occurred to me to ask him why.

      He said "So you can make me be good". Well out of the mouths of babes. I bought it. Never used it, rarely threatened to. He'd usually beat me to the threat as he started getting bratty by stopping and saying "I better stop that quick or you'll get Mother's Helping Hand".

      He is 33 now. I still thank him for that from time to time. It's a shame I needed an almost 5 year old to teach me but a blessing that he did so.

      As far as my own grief...it took some time but in the end all you can really do is live your own life as well as you can, the only memorial that really counts.
      It is all you can really do in response to any horror that is out of your control. We rededicate ourselves to being our own self as honestly and lovingly as we can and we go from there. In the end it is all we can do and in truth that is more than we know.

      Be you as well as you can be.

      Thanks again. What you wrote is near the paths my mind has been strolling as well.

      •  your writing is so powerful and . . . (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        joynow, Berenice Bobby

        Dear joynow  . . .

        All Elizabeth or Tony or so many others have really lost is the illusion of certainty.

        This is so true.  The rest of your writing is so powerful and hopefully, it will help me to understand.

        I am haunted by the funeral I attended ten days ago.  One of Phillip's daughters seemed so cold, hardened, and distant.  I am uncertain.  She lost her Mom when she was very young, about the age your son was.  I am certain that experience left a scar.  I do not have enough information.  I can only wonder, care, and listen.  Perchance one day she and I will feel safe together.  I could feel the intensity of her pain across a crowded room.

        I thank you for sharing this story.  I will reflect.  I think it has great meaning.

        It is only the giving that makes us what [who] we are. - Ian Anderson. Betsy L. Angert
        BeThink

        by Bcgntn on Tue Mar 27, 2007 at 06:29:11 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Living (0+ / 0-)

        Dear Joynow:

        Your story touches me.

        To feel the pain your son felt.....

        I experience wholeness in your reflections

        Experiencing separation fully and living fully are blessings.
        Too often I forget this lesson.

        Thank you for your story.

        :

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