You are resting in a quiet place in your home, breathing slowly and letting yourself relax. Feeling the need to stretch, you decide to go for a walk around the neighborhood.
You walk out of your house and notice a stone path veering off your sidewalk. Curious, you follow the narrow path into a wooded area. You are walking in dusk and know that soon night will descend. You come to a clearing – the Magic Garden. It is a lovely place to rest awhile. A grassy mound in the center is encircled by a tiered garden of flowers. There are tiny lights on the edges of the flower bed which switch on when dusk turns to night. Fragrant flowers – lilies, orchids, daisies, lavender – nod and bloom profusely in a waving sea of color. In the dim light, the flowers seem to be leaning to the west, as if you are to follow their direction.
You look closely at the edges of the clearing and see dirt lane leading deeper into the woods. In the dark, you can make out squares of lights that appear to be windows. As you draw closer, you see a stone cabin tucked into a thick copse of trees. It is very small, one story only, perhaps with one room serving as kitchen, bedroom and sitting room.
You approach and there is a rumble of words, like rolling thunder, pouring forth through the two open windows. When you walk through the gate to the cabin, the voices become clear; conversation and laughter and song emanate from the house.
You tip-toe to the window and peek in. Gathered together are all of your relatives and friends who have died. Everyone you hoped to see again. You hesitate in uncertainty and then speak to the gathering of folks through the window.
“Hello,” you say and, in turn, each person says hello to you. Then the ones you love most deeply ask if there are questions you want them to answer. “Nothing,” they say “is too difficult a question. Ask anything. Then we will ask questions fand know your answers.”
You speak to all of them through the window and then you speak privately to your closest loved ones. There are smiles and tears on everyone’s face.
This is what you say to each person in …
This is what each person says to you…
When you finish these conversations you have an remarkable feeling of well-being. It is time for you to return to the magic garden and to your welcoming home. You walk away, but then realize you did not say good-bye.
When you turn back , you see only a deserted cabin standing in silence and darkness. You were not able to say good-bye, but there was truly no need. You know in your mind and heart that there will be further your conversations in the stone cabin. Through conversations in your mind. And you can return whenever you so desire to visit again.
You return to the magic garden, which has been truly magical on this night, and sit on the grass, thinking about what just happened. You feel great joy as you sit among the flowers, inhaling their scent and watching the full moon light the heavens high above.
This is what you think…
Then walking in peacefulness, you follow the stony path, returning to your home. You sit down in your favorite chair with a warm cup of cocoa. You want to think about tonight, but soon you are nodding in your chair. It is time to go to bed, where you fall into a restorative slumber.
You dream of the magic garden. You see another path along the east side of the clearing. Your curiosity is piqued. You plan on returning tomorrow, just to see what you can see.