Our Inner Child Is Always With Us
Froom my book Halfway To Heaven
I thought about children a lot after writing “The Child we once were.” Scripture verses went through my mind such as the one, “Except you become as little children, you cannot enter the kingdom of God.” The preacher at church often referred to the saved Christians as “children of God.” A song I used to sing in church came to mind, “I am a child of the King.” Most gracious Heavenly father was how our pastor always began my prayers, and the most famous prayer of all began as “Our father which art in heaven.” If there were a poll on what people consider the most worthwhile pursuits in life, I bet more than two thirds of them would say having and raising a family.
I believe that at a soul level, we know that children are good for us and that we need their love and guidance as much as they need ours. Many people may not believe children can teach them anything, but once the children are grown, I think many would admit that they learned a lot of valuable lessons from their children. “Blessed be the children, they have so much to teach us,” I read again. I had a friend in college whose major was Child development. If there were such a class we could all learn a lot from “Inner Child Development 101,” I remember thinking when I read the book Love by famous hugger, writer, and educator, Leo Buscaglia. He talked about my love class in that book, and the whole concept fascinated me. I was also delighted to get one of my famous full body hugs when I had the pleasure of meeting him my sophomore year of college.
That I had to wait a half hour to get to him made it even more interesting and entertaining as well. “How can one man give so many hugs?” I heard a lady in front of me say, “Well, I think he’s I- talian,“ her friend replied. “I hear that they do that a lot over there in Italy.“ “How can we be so desperate for affection that we wait in line for an hour to have a strange man embrace us,” another lady said to a friend.
Leo Buscaglia speaks to the child we once were. The innocence and love that he radiated was very contagious and we all wanted in on it. Maybe it is like the lady in The Bible who said “If I could but touch the hem of his robe,” I would be healed, and she did and Jesus said, “Your faith has made you whole.” One of the reasons I love France and Italy is because they are very affectionate people and there is a childlike simplicity about many of them that greatly appeals to me. When I spent a semester abroad in France, my host French father was always hugging me and putting his hand on my knees, to the point that I sometimes became uncomfortable. He would run around in skimpy underwear just like a little kid with no concept of shame or guilt at his near nudity. When some hunter’s pellets penetrated his skin one day when we were hiking in the woods, he pulled his pants and underwear down and showed us where he was hit as though it was no big deal at all. When we would visit his cousin and his wife, he would give her the standard French kiss, which is three kisses on the cheeks, then he would give his male cousin the same treatment.
The Greek men were very playful on the trains when I was traveling to Athens. They danced around and would jump on each other’s backs and hoop and holler like a bunch of ten year olds.
Kids tend to love you unconditionally. I read in some book that talked about how parents can abuse some kids and no matter what they do the kids still love them and defend them. I have to confess that a lot of kids seem to be better at forgiving and forgetting than most adults. Kids can be devils we all know, but we have all no doubt seen instances when they can also be angels, or at least be like them. I always loved those little cupids with their wings spread out. “They look like little chunky pillsbury dough angels,” I told my friend Janet one day who had cupids and angels all over her house.
Thinking about kids, angels and unconditional love occupied my mind for several days after finishing “The Child You once were”. Sometimes during that phase I recall meeting a very interesting young man from Costa Rica. He had the most fascinating gold necklace around his neck. I do not recall what the design was, but I recall that it attracted my attention immediately, and was what drew me to introduce myself to him. We talked a few minutes then he said, “go ahead, you can touch it.” I also noticed this twinkle in his eyes and he had a very childlike radiant smile, like Rudolph’s nose, you could even say it glowed. He told me that it reminded him that everyone had their own beliefs and they should be honored and respected as long as they do not try to impose them on anyone else. “I have no quarrel with my God, I recall him saying, “so therefore none with anyone else’s.” He was one of the most unusual young men I have ever met. His eyes definitely had that old soul look about them. My Costa Rican friend definitely exceeded his years in wisdom and knowledge. My phrase, “I don’t have any quarrel with God, so I don’t have quarrel with anyone else’s” stuck with me and made a big impression. I even wrote it down on the inside cover page of my notebook. “Maybe he’s an angel” I told Leslie one day.
“May be,“ she replied, “Anything is possible. Then she snickered, “let’s just hope he’s not a Hell’s angel.”
“You can be such a little devil, Leslie” I chided her jokingly.
“Wait til you see my horns,” she snickered. “I got more than two of them.”
“Are they trumpets or trombones?” I punned.
“I’ll never tell, Michael. But if you are real good, I’ll invite you over sometimes and toot them for you.”
The next morning the creative urge came over me and I felt a new writing wanting to come forth. So I took out my near empty notebook, and my pen and wrote “Child of the Heavens“ Actually, I first wrote it in Spanish then later translated it. The original title was “Hijo del Cielo”.
CHILD OF THE HEAVENS
Child of the Heavens!
Do not forget your origin.
You come from the place where angels
associate in the presence of pure souls.
The energy that gives life to your dreams
creates the sad and happy songs
which come from your heart.
All of your experiences last but a short while.
The past will disappear like fluffy clouds.
Then a pure tomorrow will appear.
Happiness and Sadness will unite as one.
Good and bad memories like nightmares
and ecstasy will not endure.
Have faith in the mysterious power that
opens the eyes of the newborn.
Stop and you will hear the simple voice
of your heart where all answers dwell.
Love dwells in your heart as well.
Permit Her to erase your fears.
To dry your tears.
Child of the Heavens!
You will know everything.
You will see everything.
You will be everything.
You will cry no more.
An angel will embrace you.
The angel is your best friend.
You are the angel.
A moment in time changes everything.
Free like the wind, you will fly
to distant worlds you behold in dreams.
Your wings are Hope and Courage.
You arrive at your destiny,
Child of the Heavens!
All in a moment of time.
I felt lighter than a feather after I finished it, almost like I could just fly away. “Free like the wind you will fly to distant worlds you behold in dreams” jumped out at me. “Your wings will be Hope and Courage.” I am sure writing a lot about children, dreams and hope as of late, I thought. Now is it going to be angels? Well if so, I would embrace and welcome them. I had been in that pit a lot and writing about the heavy stuff and all the emotional baggage in my life. This was a welcomed respite. I shared "the writing" with Janette later that evening. She said she really enjoyed it. She especially liked the verse:
An angel will embrace you.
The angel is your friend.
You are the angel!
“You make us think a lot, Michael, in your writings. That is a good thing. It’s not very often that we get called an angel.”
“Didn’t you once tell me that your former husband once called you an angel?” I asked.
Janette was quiet for a moment and let out a sigh. “That was one of the most touching moments in my life when Peter dedicated my book to me and wrote inside “Dedicated to Janette, my angel.”
The title “Child of the Heavens,” kept ringing in my mind. I would even say it out loud sometimes. Are we really children of the heavens? Then I heard a line from an old gospel song, “This world is not my home, I’m just a passing through.” “Do not forget your origin,” I read, and looked up in the sky, wondering if our soul did originate up there somewhere. Then I reread “The Soul Seeks More” and thought maybe there really is much more to us than we can begin to imagine. Maybe some people hunger and have such big appetites for things because there really is something more to them perhaps that they are not even consciously aware of. “More” began with Life, lift me high! Let me behold all sights seen and unseen.” Are angels one of those sights we can learn to behold? Surely angels have more vision than we mortals here on the earth. Perhaps that is what is meant by the line “Give me more vision in these fleshly eyes that blind me from seeing so much there is to see, so much I yearn to see.” But "the writing" said, “You are the angel” Well, maybe that is just a metaphor, I thought. This is getting too deep for me tonight. I need a break before I start flapping my arms about and looking through a Sear’s catalog for wings and halos.
I put 'the writing' aside a few days. When I came back to it I was drawn to the lines:
“Stop and you will hear the simple voice of your heart where all answers dwell. Love dwells in your heart as well. Permit Her to erase your fears. To dry your tears.”
“The voice of your heart where all answers dwell,” I repeated. “So are all these writings the voice of my own heart giving me insight and answers to my questions and problems in my life?” In the course of the next few weeks and months I entertained all kinds of possibilities: Were they from higher beings, possibly angels? Were they from my own heart or soul, some deeper unconscious part of my own self? Was I just tapping the archetypes and the collective unconscious that Carl Jung talks about in his works? Could I possess multiple personalities and some of them come out and give me 'the writings'? As usual, I did not find any answers, and I finally had to lighten up and have a sense of humor about it, and tell myself, like Janet had said, that if 'the writing' comes from “Bozo the Clown”, as long as they are helpful, instructive, and inspirational, who cares?
Still, a part of my mind was never satisfied, and the questions would always return to gnaw at me. I like to understand things, to be able to give explanations for events in my world and the world around me. When I start stepping out into “la la zone” as one of my friends referred to my experiences, part of me was uncomfortable and demanded and needed answers that would satisfy my rational mind. “Well, dream on,” Leslie would say when I told her that. “Some things we just aren’t meant to know. “The writings” are helping you so stop trying to figure out where they are coming from. There are times when we all need to be more like the animals. There is something to be said for their instinctual responses. A bird does not ask how its wings can spread and fly, it just flies. It does not ask how do I sing, it sings. A blossom does not ask the sun why it is drawn to bend towards the sunlight, it bends. A lioness does not ask her prey will the kill be painful, she kills because that is her nature and she needs to kill to live.”
“Well, aren’t we Miss Philosopher” tonight,” I would say in a sarcastic tone.
“I have my moments, Michael. “You have said that when you write, you are not depressed, so in a sense couldn’t we conclude that writing is vital to your health and even your life?”
I still was not satisfied with Leslie’s suggestion that I just accept 'the writings' and not ponder their origins. But I had to agree with her that when I am writing and being creative, I feel like I have a purpose in life, and I am not depressed. That, I concluded was reason enough. I would just keep on pondering and trying to figure out where they came from.