My blog is infected with ads. Does anyone know how to get rid of them? If not, I may shut it down rather than submit my readers (if there are any) to the bullying intrusion of ads. I am furious. It’s expression of the demonic; and I’m not teasing, for don’t most examples of the Dark Side come as minor irritating insignificant malicious little interventions, and not the dramatic fire and fury that we associate with a fork-tailed, goat-footed, grinning, hairy, evil Satan. What do I do (apart from praying)? Does anyone out there know?
And now for stories, two new and happy ones. Because, especially during trying times, we need the hopeful stories. We need to remember that the Universe is always reaching out to us, loving and laughing. The question is, Can we hear? Someone once wrote, “Pain is the touchstone of the spiritual life.” But I think joy is the touchstone to the spiritual. So, here comes joy.
Thirteen years ago I bought my beautiful half-Arab mare. I met her when she was only three years old, and riding her that day in New Mexico, I (an experienced rider since childhood) thought how unusual she was. I had never met a horse so attuned to me, so willing, so trusting, so courageous. And so kind! Yet she was still a baby. I remember our small group cantering on the magnificent wide mesa, when we came across the rotting carcass of a cow. The other horses, older, experienced, lunged, snorted, backed and reared, refusing to walk pass the body, while little Spring, my horse, listening to my voice and seat, stepped, ears pricked, frightened but trusting, past the rotten smell. The other horses followed. That impressed me.
The stable owner wanted me to buy her, but I didn’t want a horse. I live in Washington DC, and was spending only a few months a year in New Mexico. The horse would always be where I was not, whether I kept her in Virginia or in New Mexico. Anyway horses are expensive. I was prudent. So, instead, a young girl bought her, but since she let me lease the horse when I was in New Mexico, I thought I had the best of all worlds, a horse with none of the responsibility of ownership.
One December morning, though, back in Washington, I woke up with a clear “knowing,” that Spring would be sold and move to Portland, Oregon. I would never see her again! I phoned the stable in New Mexico.
“If Spring is ever for sale,” I said, “let me know.”
“Oh,” cried Katherine, the stable owner, in surprise. “Just yesterday her owner told me that she has to move to Portland, Oregon, and needs to sell Spring.” I put down an option on the horse, and agreed to spend the month of February in New Mexico. At the end of that month, I said, I would decide if I would buy Spring. I rode her many times that February (the weather can be lovely in winter), and over and over I came to a firm decision: “No. It makes no sense for me to buy a horse.” But no sooner was the decision made than I would feel that tap on the shoulder that I associate with the brush of an angel’s wing —Think again. That’s wrong!
Intellectually it made no sense to buy a horse. I was 68. I was old. How long would I be able ride? How could I afford a horse? On and on the negatives blew about in my brain. Until one day I remembered: “All things are possible with God. If the Beloved wants me to have this horse, her upkeep will be provided.”
I remembered another occasion, when years earlier I had been praying and praying for direction in my life: What was I to do? Where was I to go? I had felt myself at a crossroads, with no insight in how to be of any use to anyone. On that occasion, too, I was at my little retreat in New Mexico, and I remember waking up one morning again with a clear “Knowing:” New York City, Six months! And the YES that I associate with the Voice of God. It was, of course, immediately followed by doubt: NYC! I can’t afford New York. What would I do there? And then I reminded myself, “All things are possible with God.” That morning I phoned the only three people I knew in New York. “I’m thinking of moving to NYC for four or five months,” I said, already downgrading the time. “I’m looking for an apartment to sublet.”
One friend told me to call her friend, Charlotte. I left a message on Charlotte’s phone number at work. It turned out that Charlotte was a realtor, and that morning at the mailboxes in her building on 66th and Third Avenue, a woman introduced herself. “You’re in real estate,” she said to Charlotte. “My friend Mary just died and the family wants to rent her two bedroom, rent-controlled apartment for six months—if you know of anyone.” Charlotte went to her office, and there found my phone call about needing a rental for six months. It was while in New York City that I learned my gifts as a psychic and medium and began to give readings. I also became friends with Charlotte, a beautiful young woman, who, it turned out, was dying. We spent hours talking of spiritual matters and of what happens when we die. A few months later, she was gone. I’ve often thought of that: How do we know when we are in service, helping someone else?
Going back to my horse, I remembered all this. I bought my horse, and she has given me more joy in the these years than I could have imagined in my wildest dreams. So this is what I know: God speaks to me in joy. In a lift of the heart. If I have a hard decision to make, I place the alternatives, each in the palm of one hand. Then, eyes closed, I weigh my hands, palms up. Which feels lighter? Which brings a flood of pleasure to my heart? Which is dutiful, hard, difficult? Always I must choose the one with joy.
I know a woman who believed if she wanted something, God would reject it, and if God wanted it (whatever “it” was), the path would be painful and hard. She didn’t know that God puts desires in our hearts in order that we accomplish them. She didn’t know that the love of the Beloved is always expressed by gladness and delight. And if something is taken away—and life is rich with loss of homes, of friends, of loved one, loss of ideals and ambitions, loss of dreams, loss on loss— always something then comes thrusting up, like Springtime flowers, to offer us bouquets of other joy. We have cavalries of angels surrounding us, helping, serving us. The point is, can we hear their siren song? And can we trust?
Here’s a hint: If you are going into a difficult meeting, send your angels ahead of you to talk to the angels of those you are meeting and to work out the harmonious resolution of the matter, for the highest good of everyone involved. Then sit back and be surprised!