6: Family Life – Here and Beyond
Later that same year we moved to a flat in a big, old Georgian mansion out in the country. This move came about by way of another synchronistic event. I was in the local health food shop talking to the proprietor about some aspect of wholefood when an elderly lady intervened. She said she had overheard the discussion and proffered some advice, stating during the conversation that she was the cook for Lord and Lady Dowding.
“Oh, I know Lord Dowding and her Ladyship; I had tea with them a few years ago,” I said.
Needless to say, our conversation developed and I mentioned that we were looking for somewhere to live. The lady introduced herself as Edna and said that the flat next to hers was coming up vacant and could be ideal for us. Rental accommodation was sparse, so this flat was a godsend.
Edna proved to be a splendid neighbour, helping us greatly with vegetarian and wholefood recipes and ideas (the Dowdings were vegetarian), cooking fantastic meals for us from time to time and doing the odd spot of babysitting. It was here that our second child was born, forty-nine weeks after her older sister. So much for Theresa’s infertility! We tried all manner of the latest contraceptive devices, but it seemed like I only had to take my socks off and she fell pregnant! In spite of all our precautions, she conceived three more times. Had we actually brought six offspring into this world, Heaven knows how we would have coped!
Theresa’s health was very fragile — she had contracted brucellosis from infected milk in Scotland in 1973 and this almost killed her. Brucellosis causes spontaneous abortion, or miscarriage, in cattle, and the same appeared to be the case with Theresa. Generally poor health and especially female troubles meant that none of the three subsequent pregnancies lasted even half way to term and eventually led to her having a hysterectomy a few years after that.
There was a further synchronistic event involving Hugh Dowding, more than twenty years later. As part of our business activity we exhibited at various trade shows. One of these shows was booked at what was, during World War II, Duxford Aerodrome, near Cambridge — an RAF and US Air Force fighter base, now part of the Imperial War Museum. The exhibition was in what had been the Officers’ Mess, now tastefully refurbished as a conference and exhibition facility, but retaining the atmosphere of its original purpose.
I arrived on the appointed day with our exhibition stand and equipment, flat-packed for ease of transportation and assembly. We were pre-booked as stand-space 22 and I took our equipment to that marked-out spot. There was another exhibitor’s stand already erected there. I found the organiser, who studied the floor-plan.
“Oh,” he said, “there is a mix-up, but we can re-schedule you to stand 27.”
I arrived at space 27 and there, hanging on the wood-panelled wall at the back of the space was a portrait in oil of Air Marshall Lord Hugh Dowding, looking as he might have during the war. If there had not been a mix-up, Hugh’s portrait would have been hidden behind some other exhibitor’s stand, never to be noticed by me.
As I stood, transfixed for a long moment frozen in time, looking at the portrait, Hugh’s eyes sparkled smilingly at me and he was right there, bringing his love, blessing and personal joy straight into my heart. It was a very precious and treasured moment for me. I always marvel at how these serendipitous ‘little’ events are organised by our friends and loved ones in spirit, just to let us know that they are not as far away as we in the Earth life may think.
Hugh had, unwittingly — synchronistically — been an enormous influence on my life, opening it up to the spiritual service of helping lost souls, massively more of which service was much later to become a central part of our lives, and here he was, after that service phase had become fully operational, bringing this reminder that he was still very much with me, even though I had not ‘seen’ him since 1967. Is it any wonder the term stalwart seems so apposite to describe such true and timeless (as well as tireless) friends? Assuredly, not just friends, but brothers in the Sonship of God.
There were some very negative psychic energies in the mansion to which we had moved, emanating, so it seemed, from the ground floor, and the children were highly sensitive to them. When our younger daughter was only 6 months old I awoke in the middle of the night from a deep sleep, with a dreadful feeling in the solar plexus of pervasive evil, but having no idea why. As I lay there wondering what was going on, I became aware of a ruckus in the baby’s room, just down the hall from our bedroom. It sounded as if her cot was being violently thrashed about, hitting the walls and floor. I leapt from bed and hurtled into her room.
The cot was completely collapsed, dismantled and lying in a disorderly heap on the floor. The nuts and bolts holding it together were unscrewed and removed from their sockets. She was lying, dazed, still half asleep, on the floor across the room. This act of violence, in which her cot had been shaken until it had come apart — or, perhaps more probably, had been deliberately dismantled — and the six-month old lifted and moved out of it and across the room, came from an unseen source. Some would call this the work of poltergeists, but I have always understood poltergeists to be mischievous spirits. Whatever did this was well beyond mischievous, for I had been wakened by a combination of the noise and the nauseating, fearful vibration of malevolence clutching at my midriff.
During the three years we lived there numerous other incidents indicated that ungodly energies permeated the place. When our older daughter was just three she woke up one night screaming in terror. I raced to her bedside and cradled her in my arms to calm her down. She was eventually able to tell me that an ugly, frightening old woman had come and was saying horrible things and threatening her with harm. I told her that the Lord Jesus was our friend and protector and that he had power over situations such as this.
Calling on his name and authority, I commanded the old crone to go and never to return. This calmed our daughter and she assured me that the harpy had indeed departed. I told her that at any time unfriendly spirits might come calling, all she had to do was reach out her hand, call out to Jesus to hold it and ask him to guard and protect her, and that he would instantly be there, and she would have nothing to fear. Within minutes she was asleep again and there were no more such visits from the old hag.
The years rolled by and we moved several times, eventually managing to get a mortgage to buy a house. I had become the top sales representative for the company and for three years consecutively earned enough commission to pay off the mortgage, but the company had got into various kinds of difficulty and I never received a penny of these earnings. It was a stressful and worrying time in our lives, although we always had a roof over our heads and food on the table, even if sometimes only by the skin of our teeth! My brother asked if I felt bitter about being deprived of what was rightfully mine. It would not be true if I were to say I was not entirely happy about it but I could honestly say I was not bitter.
“If I am bitter, whose gut is it going to rot?” I said to Mike. “Only mine, so what’s the point?”
Over the years I occasionally pondered the ‘what ifs’, but by and large it was simply a case of getting on with life, and the matter became increasingly consigned to the memory archives.
In 1977 the company was sold and most of the sales force was let go. The new owner wanted me to move to Cambridge, where his headquarters were located, to be his sales manager. He told me he was going to teach me how to become a businessman. This seemed like a wonderful new beginning and we eagerly welcomed this, but our enthusiasm was to be short-lived. This new employer was a bully who treated everyone — staff, suppliers, even customers — like something you wouldn’t want to step in. He was true to his word about teaching me how to become a business man, but not in the way he intended it.
To behave toward another in a way we would not wish others to behave toward us is dishonouring them and in so doing we dishonour ourselves.
I resolved from observing and experiencing his behaviour toward his fellows that this was not the way I ever wished to behave, in any circumstances; whether in a social, domestic or work setting. Regardless of the circumstances, our fellows are our brothers, created by God, the Creator Spirit, in His likeness. To behave toward our brothers in a way we would not wish them to behave toward us is dishonouring them, and in so doing we dishonour ourselves, because in the eternal scheme of things we are all One in the Sonship of the Father Creator.
To dishonour any living being is to bind us to them in a karmic debt, and this holds us — as well as them — back on the path of spiritual progress. An entirely unserviceable situation is thus set in motion, and this has to be brought back into balance, however long it takes. And if we are unaware of the cosmic laws in effect, and of which we have been in breach in that incarnation, then subsequent incarnations will be required to correct the imbalance.
As time went by it became increasingly clear that, much as I loved the products and the job, the oppressive work environment was rapidly creating conditions wherein the reasons for going began to outweigh the reasons for staying. During this time two work colleagues and I looked very seriously into the prospects of moving to Norway to set-up our own seaweed processing operation there. Plans moved ahead and came near to fulfilment; we had arranged financial assistance from the Norwegian authorities, I had given notice and left my employment and we had sold our house preparatory to moving to an island halfway up the west coast of Norway.
But the hand of duplicity intervened, and at the last moment our plans were dashed to ruins. I was out of work, living in rented accommodation to which the owners were due to return from abroad in only a few months, with a wife and two school-age daughters to support, with no job and no apparent prospects. It was a bleak moment, but after all the years of experiencing the Lord Jesus, I was able to call upon some of that knowing-beyond-all-doubt of his living, personal, loving presence in my life and the reality of his beneficent, protecting power, to help me maintain my equilibrium. I had an inward sense that all was going to be well and that this was, in some way I could not then clearly understand, the Master once again leading us out of a situation.
Having that ‘blind trust’ provides a measure of peace and well-being in the most distressing moments.
Having that ‘blind trust’ gives one something to hold onto; it provides a measure of inner peace and well-being in the most distressing moments. The fullness of the measure, or the degree of discernibility of it, is directly proportional to our own degree of blind trust. A limited level of trust affords us only a limited amount of peace and comfort; a larger amount of trust affords a proportionally greater level of inner peace and tranquillity. In our Earth-life journey we tend only to come to any degree of trust by actually experiencing the trustworthiness of the person or situation in which we are willing to place our trust.
Placing trust in a complete stranger, about whom one knows nothing, could be considered foolhardy. Over the better part of two decades I had been experiencing Jesus as loving, caring, a real friend and help in time of distress (as well as in times of joy). Without the certainty provided by that experience, something akin to blind panic could very easily have enveloped me at that time.
With Theresa’s loving support also and keeping in mind the Master’s oft-repeated counsel If in doubt, do nothing, we did that. Still, in my earthly consciousness I could think of no prospects. Days and weeks went by and the date for having to move from our rented house loomed nearer.
One day, with time on my hands and our situation weighing on my mind, I decided to start clearing out some of the stuff we had brought with us when we sold our own house. I had substantial quantities of trade magazines, mostly un-read, and other paraphernalia from my erstwhile employment, so set to sorting through it to discard non-essential items.
There were several recent issues of a journal covering arid-zone agriculture which I had not read, so before throwing them out, I started looking through them. There, in one of them, was an article about a new product claiming to conserve water by improving the ability of soils to retain it, which indicated that crops could be grown where previously they could not, such as in deserts, or could be grown better than before in marginal-quality soils.
This article pressed my buttons. Here was something with which I truly resonated; some new technology to really do some good in the world. And the company was UK based, near Manchester. I thought maybe I could apply to be their UK distributor, since they seemed to be focusing their attention on arid parts of the planet. I felt sure there was plenty of scope for improving efficiency of water-use in commercial horticulture, landscaping, re-forestation and the like, even in temperate climates, and I knew lots of people who might become customers or even wholesale distributors. I called the company and told them of my ideas, saying I would like to apply for a sales agency. They invited me to visit, for a chat.
As I got into the car to drive to Manchester on the appointed day, instantly the Master was there with me, in the passenger seat, larger than life — as was so characteristic of him. His relaxed, reassuring presence and the love emanating from him welled me up with reciprocal love for him and gratitude for the unwavering constancy of his friendship, support and solidarity, and suddenly I knew, beyond doubt, with a knowing which is not of intellectual thought processes but of the higher part of our mind, the part that is one with Christ, that these people were actually going to employ me. Not just a commission sales agency but a salaried staff member.
Here would be a chance to rebuild my life, work and provide security for my beloved family again. The journey to Manchester was more like air than road travel, and I had no need of a plane for this kind of flying; my very soul was soaring to the heights of Heaven.
Sure enough I drove home afterwards with a firm offer of a job as Sales Manager. The car reverberated with songs of rejoicing and thanksgiving, from heart and soul as well as voice. I felt I knew what Handel must have experienced as he received the inspiration for the Alleluia Chorus from Messiah.
Amazingly, after just a few months the Company became insolvent and we seemed to be back in the mire. But I had made good contacts in that short time, and almost immediately set up a new business with several new associates, and we soldiered on.
By this time we had bought a house in Wiltshire and I was working from home, with most sales contacts being by phone. It was a struggle, but we were making progress.
suddenly I was aware that there were four children standing at the foot of our bed.
One night at bed time Theresa and I had just put out the light and were settling down for sleep when suddenly I was aware that there were four children standing at the foot of our bed. To our right was the oldest, a boy of about twelve. Next to him, a girl of about nine, then a boy, about eight, and last but not least, a girl, about seven, all lined up in order of descending height — and presumably therefore, age. I sat up, startled by the suddenness of the apparition, but unafraid — the vibes were entirely benign.
The oldest child said, “Hello, Dad, it’s me, Peter. Sorry if we startled you. Diana, Christopher and Jessica are here with me. We have come to let you know that we love you and Mum and our sisters in the Earth life; we are well and happy and are never far away. Every time you think of us or send out love and blessings and goodwill toward us, we instantly have awareness of it. We know you love us deeply and this fills our hearts with joy. We want you to keep in your understanding that even though we are not incarnate, we really are here, and are your loving children. We will always be here for you, and will always love you.”
The other three, Diana, Chris and Jessica were not silent during this and added their own affirmations, eager to chip in their own comments. Peter, in characteristic big brother manner, was shushing them, but of course they were determined to be heard also.
As you can imagine, this was a deeply moving moment. Theresa knew something was going on, that there was someone there, and picked up the vibes, even though she didn’t see them or hear their speaking, and I quickly explained what was happening. It was a joyous experience for us both, and Theresa, who had felt a great burden of guilt that she had been unable to bring these, our four other children, into this world, was greatly uplifted by it, and relieved of much of her burden.
We shared this experience with our daughters, who were aged eleven and ten, and they accepted this very much as a matter of fact; a perfectly natural, normal experience, which was, of course, exactly what we wished them to do, since to us that was precisely what it was and is. It was our desire that they should have no fear of such events and experiences; that they should be able to accept such with equanimity.
Some years later, after they had grown up and left home, but had come to visit, this event came into the conversation and they shared with us some of their experiences during our brief, eighteen-month sojourn in Wiltshire. In one, our younger daughter was also in bed, contemplating life as she was settling down for sleep when suddenly she became aware of a little boy in her room. He was standing by the wall between the door and the window. His hands were clasped behind his back and he was leaning against the wall, then pushing himself away from it with his hands, swaying back and forth, all the while looking casually around the room.
As she finished recounting this incident, I said to her, “What happened then?”
She said, “I don’t know; I went off to sleep.”
At that moment, I instantly knew it was Chris, and as the awareness hit me I heard him say “I’d come to play.”
Here was Chris, her younger brother, alive, well and full of sibling love for his older sister in a normal, healthy way, just as we all are (in spite of the usual rivalry, squabbling and nonsense that go on in every family). He had arrived at her bed time, knowing that she would soon be asleep and that her soul would then be leaving her body and entering the soul realms — his home territory — so that they could spend the hours of her sleep time together.
I said to her, “You never told us that before; I didn’t know you had had awareness of your brothers and sisters in spirit.”
But without this new, added comment from Chris providing greater insight into what the moment was all about, the significance was veiled from her understanding until this moment, years later.
Then her older sister added, quite casually and matter-of-factly, “Oh, yes, I was aware of Peter being around all the time. I always have been.”
It was so normal, so natural to her that she had assumed this was something we would have somehow ‘known’, so why would she need to even bother mentioning it!?
Theresa’s and my awareness of our four offspring in spirit had been fairly dormant since the early years, when we had had those few sightings of Peter as a toddler. I guess we had been so involved with events at the Earth-life level of activity that these more subtle realities had become rather pushed into the wings.
However, after that bedside visit in Wiltshire, contact was well and truly restored, and we entered a phase of our lives when contact with ‘the gang of four’ became very much part of our experience, both in an uplifting, spiritual way, and also very much at an ordinary, down-to-Earth, familial way, and always with love, spontaneity, comfortableness and joy strengthening the rightness of such contact. In this is no ‘trafficking with the devil’ as so many old-order religionists would have one believe. This was, without a shadow of doubt, ‘the love of Heaven’ in the most natural, comfortable way imaginable.
This began an era of frequent and meaningful contact with Peter, Diana and Christopher. We came to know each of them as intimately as we knew our two daughters in this world — and actually in many ways better, because contact with those in the Heaven realms is literally at the soul-to-soul, mind-to-mind level, whereas the denser substance of our bodily senses acts as a type of screen, filtering out nuances and subtleties that the soul means, intends and conveys but that are lost in the filtration system of our sensory perception faculties. Also, although I referred to the gang of four earlier… in reality, there was no awareness of Jessica at all. Full and total awareness of her — at the soul-to-soul level — came just once, in April 1993, when I was out walking our dog in the nearby city greenspace.
As I paused to ‘tune in to the infinite’ by my favourite grove of trees, suddenly and unexpectedly, there she was. I — my inner being — knew instantly who it was. She appeared about six or eight paces away, maybe three metres above the ground, amidst the nearby trees. She was radiant sunlight; gossamer, diaphanous; light and insubstantial as a thistledown wafting gently in the breeze.
The love that spontaneously emanated, burst forth, exploded from her was so intense and yet so delicate, so personal and so immediately overwhelming that it caused me to gasp out loud, to feel faint with the rush of upliftment with which it filled my heart and soul. She was full of joy that is so far beyond any experience at the purely Earth-mind conscious level that I was almost dazed — and certainly bedazzled — by her vibration.
She was so sparkling, effervescent with this joy that she could not keep still, and was in constant motion, like one might imagine a fairy to be in a children’s story. The love was intensely personal, one-to-one, for me, her beloved Dad and I knew it was something she had yearned to do — come and visit me in this loving way — for a long time. The communication was not as I had experienced it from others, including her own brothers and sister in her realm. Rather, it was like telepathy; what I now refer to as mind-to-mind communing. I simply ‘knew’ what she was ‘saying’, which was in essence:
“I love you so dearly; admire and honour you for all that you are; am with you often, even though you have not been aware of it; have deeply longed for this moment of sharing, but the time was not right until now.”
It was a moment that was impossible to measure in Earth time. It was out of time. Then, as suddenly as she had arrived, she was gone.
I was exhilarated, exalted, elated; soaring with the intimacy and intensity of it; yet, as I walked home afterwards there was a nuance also of sadness elusively floating around in my heart and in my head. Over the following hours and days, as I became adjusted to the experience and the personal immensity of it, I came to know in my soul that the sadness was because although it was a most wonderful Hello — an introduction and getting-to-know-you at a level and in a way that, other than in exceptional cases, can take many weeks, months or even years between two souls incarnate — it was also a Goodbye.
She was going to reincarnate. She was going to take upon herself another persona, a new Earth-life identity.
How could this be? What could possibly separate us now, after this most wonderful of encounters? But I really knew the answer, even though it had not been spoken during this exquisite communion between us. It was not what had been exchanged (as distinct from spoken) but what had been between the lines during that timeless moment: she was going away. She was going to reincarnate. She was going to take upon herself another persona, a new Earth-life identity.
She would no longer be, to my perception, ‘our Jessica’, other than as with us all in the Earth life: as a seed memory within the overall, eternal aspect of our higher being. Jessica would never be lost, gone, disintegrated, but would become part of an ever growing, ever becoming, ever expanding Being of the Light, until she became, as is the destiny of us all, fully enlightened and restored to the oneness that we all are within the Sonship of our heavenly Father.
Meanwhile, she would soon become, once again, a citizen of eternity sojourning in time, just as we all are during our brief appearances on Earth. But the ‘Jessica’ part of her would become a dormant, Shadow of Light part of her ‘allness’ as she took a new vehicle of expression, and thus continue to grow by experiencing new challenges, new adventures, new opportunities to transform adversity into fulfilment, to bring into manifestation some new magnificence uniquely hers, just as is the potential with every single one of us creative-created beings in this dimension. But above all it is our objective to heal relationships broken, often over numerous incarnations, so that we all become restored to the oneness in Eternity that is our destiny.
That is our purpose, our reason for being here. And, deep within our soul is the seed memory of all the other identities we are/have been during our multiple journeys into this illusory world of physical experience and back to the etheric counterpart of Earth again. So would it be with Jessica. She would always ‘be’, but just as Jessica was who she was because of all she had been before, so who she was now about to become would be that new being because of the ‘Jessica’ contribution to the greater being that (s)he is going to become.
Jessica had not made it through into the Earth dimension back in 1975. She had grown up in the etheric realm, and had always been close to her Earth-life mum, dad and siblings. There, she had progressed as far as she was able as Jessica, and in order to progress further toward full enlightenment, another potential, another opportunity, was required, in another persona, just as is the case for us all. She had certainly become a radiant being; perhaps more than I could be fully aware.
Her appearance to me assuredly indicated that she had become a Being of the Light. Whether this meant full enlightenment I have no information but there is no doubt in my mind that however much she may be coming back here to resolve issues for her own enlightenment, she is coming back for the help of others. Either way, this is a joyous and wonderful, blessed, glorious thing.
We are drawn back to the Earth physical because here — and only here, in time and place — can we outwork and resolve the karmic issues that accrue between souls as a result of misperceptions about who we really are. This leads to unkingdomly thoughts, attitudes, judgements, behaviour toward our fellows, leading to largely unconscious guilt, fear and shame.
Reincarnating enables opportunities to correct those outstanding issues and grievances, and restore perfect peace, harmony and balance between us. In this way the Kingdom of Heaven can be established on Earth in and through us, the fragmented Sonship, and our restoration to wholeness, oneness in Christ completed. Much more about this later.
Meanwhile, during our sojourning in time, we call into our presence opportunity to grow, experience, help, give, forgive, heal, achieve. This means not just material, pecuniary success, but immeasurably more important, fulfilment of our soul’s desire for spiritual awakening to the magnificence that we, in our Sonship of the Creator, really are. In this way we recreate, realign ourselves anew in that truth in as many ways as the potential we bring with us into this life can permit; as many ways as our heart desires, all in accord with our birth vision.
All that gets between us and our ability to fulfil our heart’s desire is commitment, or rather, lack of it. How truly do we seek it; how earnestly do we desire it? For so many, the cares of the world, the personal difficulties and the circumstantial obstacles we unconsciously allow to slowly and inexorably get in the way, gradually push our ambitions and deep-down motivations to the back burner.
Although our contact with Jessica had been basically limited to the foot-of-the-bed encounter in Wiltshire and now the grove-of-trees experience, the information given by mind-to-mind communing had been massively more. As I later mulled over that exchange, it became absolutely clear that the overriding commitment of Jessica was her all-encompassing, supreme desire, passion, focus, to reincarnate.
She had been almost desperate in her eagerness so to do back in 1975 and had not made it through. The ensuing ‘years’ had not been wasted for her, and no doubt much more had been accomplished in her quest for spiritual awakening during her spell in the etheric counterpart of Earth than we had any awareness of.
But now had come the right time, once again, for this great desire of hers to re-enter the world of material experience, and she had set her face toward this with single-minded determination. Here was a soul on a mission. This time, it was clear, it would not be thwarted. The encounter in the grove of trees had been on a Friday morning in April. At Communion two days later, she appeared, for the first — and only — time, to my awareness, as a young adult, to confirm her commitment to the Lord Jesus for her birth vision of her about-to-be-embarked-upon incarnation. I suspect it needed no confirmation for her own sake but that it was as much to allow Theresa and me to see her demonstration of it, so that we would have that comfort of knowing it to be so.
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