ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Religion and Philosophy»
  • Exploring Religious Options

...Sunday Morning Reverie...

Updated on March 7, 2011

...Conversing With The Dead...

...Conversing With God...

...What it is about Sunday mornings that asks me to come to the cemetary? There is a huge one right down the street, where many famous people lay to rest. PT Barnum and Tom Thumb rest here, as well as Margaret Rudkin, the founder of Pepperidge Farms.

...I was raised Catholic and attended Catholic schools for nine years. I had always been entranced by the stained glass, candles and music. It was the sermon, the voice of the priest and the confusing speech that made me fall asleep almost every time. I couldn't wait for it to be over so I could light a candle. Even way back then, the mystery of the fire touching the wick of the little tealight enchanted me. The beautiful lily and butterfly in the designs of the windows had imprinted themselves in my mind.

...Perhaps it is the remembrance of these mornings, Sunday mornings, that were reserved for feeling sanctuous and holy that emerge every week for me. I feel the community around me stir and see them get into their cars and go off to church. I see the droves of cars outside the churches and haven't heard the bells ring in a very long time...I wonder why? Does it stop for the winter? There are times when I catch the tune in the wind on an early warm spring morning. Ave Maria.

...All my life I struggled against the guilt of going and not going to church. Against the odd solitude that I belonged there when no one else was there, or not at all. The people around me seemed to be made of wax and voice, chanting in time with each other in a cult like fashion. There was no choice as I was too young to protest, even in my protest, there was no way out of it. I could only be "sick" so many times. One time I even brought an alarm clock and set it to go off right in the middle of the mass, perhaps signalling "Time to Leave"...but it only made my father even more perplexed with me. I felt bad about that.

...I had always loved the music, and sometimes I loved what the words were that were sung. I had been in the choir and people always said they couldn't hear me singing. I would swear that I was. I would rather sing than anything else. I knew for myself that I was, and that was good enough. The incense being swung in the censer was also something that I had loved. The fragrant smoke, the soft clinging of the chain as it came forward and back, side to side.

...I find it was hard to try to contact "God" with all these people around, all this sound and sight and distraction. I felt like "He" was off doing "God" stuff somewhere else, while the priest was standing in for Him. It felt like a rip off. Why was this man so different than my father, or anyone elses father? Why did he want us to call him father?

...Feeling Her Light...

...Listening To Whispers...

 ...Around 1994 just before my oldest son's surgery for his cleft palate, I was to have him baptized before the major reconstructive facial surgery.  "God Forbid" something went wrong I was told... :( So of course, it was only right to get him baptized.  I lived near another local church and made the arrangements.  Part of the "deal" was to be a member of the church congregation, so for a few months I sat in that church and tried to make a new connection, for myself, for my son.  It was during this time that I saw "The Vision".

...The Vision was a woman with closed eyes, head wreathed in flowers.  She spoke to me there, she told me that I needed to paint and write and listen.  She told me that I needed no intermediary and that I could contact the Divine anytime, anywhere, without the go-between of a mortal being.  She told me that She wouldn't pressure me or make me feel guilty or ask me to do what made me feel uncomfortable.  I clearly remember trying to capture this Vision on paper. 

...More and more She whispered to me.  More and more She asked me to be brave and courageously follow the creative imprint that had been instilled in me.  More and more the Patriarchy receeded and the Mother stepped forward.  When my father died in 2000, the Patriarch died with him.  Her voice became unwavering then, and my fathers voice, what was left of it, weaved its way into Her responses to me.  I would frequently go to his grave in the first year, until I was released from the obligation through the knowledge that I could contact him anywhere, as well.  That his spirit was the same as Her spirit.  It could be everywhere, anywhere.


...Whispers of the Goddess...

...Much to my mothers dismay, I could not sit in the rigid church. I could not celebrate the mass or be bored where I was supposed to be inspired. I felt that I could take responsibility of my spiritual behaviour on my own. That I could make the right choices for myself and my children via "feeling" and intuitively being led by Something that wasn't only just accessed that one hour a week in a church. Any church. I suppose there are those gorgeous enormous ancient churches that can invoke even the most atheistic person to succumb to its beauty and sacredness, but the architecture itself won't do it for me. The stained glass, incense, beautiful singing and candles - all visually and sensory fulfilling - these were the elements that "stuck" with me. The other part, the one where you come to God's house for an hour a week and then went out and flipped off the person who cut you off in the parking lot on the way home...that was the part that confused me the most. Why sit there for that hour after a whole week of perhaps being impatient, rude, selfish etc. and expect some kind of miracle to come from outside? Why give that kind of power to something outside of you? Or expect to attain it that way?

...These are just random statements that come to me as I prepare for another day filled with priorities based on the people I love. I am more spiritual and supported now than I have been in my whole life. I am drawn to the cemetary because I see that time is short, and things are carved in stone. People lay under the cold earth and their whispers drift among the fake fabric flowers and goose feathers. Did it matter that they sat on a pew or on a log and worshipped the same source of Spirit? Did it matter that they were distracted and lulled to sleep on that pew yet never more alive than on that tree stump in the middle of the forest?

...When I leave here, and get on with my day, I have that on my mind, that cemetary walk. I walk past graves of people whose lives were just like mine. Where are all their papers, their notes, their diaries? Where are their families and paintings and clothes? All of this - gone...gone...gone...just manifestations of material that fades away...what is left? Words...words that have imprinted themselves in each of us...words that are whispers in our ears from unseen sources...words that guide us the right way if we are ready to follow...

...Whispers of the Goddess is the book of poetry and prose that I published in 2009. Some of those words are attached to my fondest memories, and the words of people who had once touched my life. They are forever immortalized in me. I have found that most of them could not have been my conscious choice. Most of them were given to me by others, by inspiration and by association. As I wander through my life now I am very conscious of the words that come out of my mouth, but more so of the words that I allow to enter my thoughts. These words, all strung together, will give you a perception of a very small part of me. These words are what will cleave you to me, or repel you away from me. These words hold a power that only you can decide what to do with.

...As I listen to Her whispers, more and more it becomes apparent that the Words are what save us. The words that we begin to write to ourselves, they turn into letters, journals, diaries, blogs...they show us what we haven't wanted to see or hear...yet know we should because in the end...The Words ARE set in stone, for the most part. Those words, less than a paragraph. sometimes less than a sentence...lay upon a stones face...looking up at the endless world...wishing for just one more breath...

P.T. Barnums grave site in Mountain Grove Cemetary, Bridgeport CT
P.T. Barnums grave site in Mountain Grove Cemetary, Bridgeport CT | Source

...In the Arms of the Angels...


Submit a Comment

  • Carole Anzolletti profile image

    Carole Anzolletti 6 years ago from The Phantom Queen's Labyrinth is amazing to me that you mention Highgate Cemetary in London. The audiobook I am currently listening to is situated in this cemetary, with one of its residents in a flat, doing research on the history of the place - mourning the passing of his partner, Elsbeth...who is now a ghost drifting through this amazing story "Her Fearful Symmetry"

    I, myself, am from England, and find anything to do with it, alive or dead, extrememly fascinating...I do hope to continue to share my thoughts and meanderings, more often than not...yes, this life we all know and love...with its specific tragedies and trials, that bring us even closer together...lets stay that way because you never know when there will be no more moments to speak of...You are a generous soul with a kind heart, and I am so grateful to meet you, too...

  • epigramman profile image

    epigramman 6 years ago

    ..well my favorite cemetary in the entire world is Highgate Cemetary in London (and as a homework assignment if you're unfamiliar with it - just go to You Tube and type it in)

    ....and it's so very ironic that on this very subject of finality and death I find one of the most life affirming writers I have ever had the pleasure of meeting at the Hub - and you are such a sensational writer that I really do hope that you can continue to bless us with your fantastic prose and profound thoughts - in this life that we all know and love .....

  • Enlydia Listener profile image

    Enlydia Listener 6 years ago from trailer in the country

    Thank you Carole, this spoke to my heart on this

    Sunday afternoon...I no longer attend church you, once my dad died, I was less fearful of whay God thought...and feel closer to Him now. Blessings and have a great week!

  • Ddraigcoch profile image

    Emma 6 years ago from UK

    I love cemeteries. They always seem a place to feel calm and think peacefully. I respect that the old headstones have stood there for all of those centuries. Great hub.