November 2013 – A Child’s Journey into a Body
As I did my best to lift my mind out of all the hubbub of details of my adult life to write this letter, I was humbled to hear the reflections of a four-year-old boy who is visiting our home. This child is such an original thinker, he caused me to wonder what we might be able to discover – or rediscover – for ourselves if we really mused deeply enough. As Rainer Maria Rilke advises us, “Be patient toward all that is unresolved your heart. Do not now seek the answers. Live the questions.”
This child is a walking question mark. He says he wants to be a scientist when he grows up. When I asked him what he was going to study or figure out as a scientist, he said he wanted to know what happens after life as a human being. Yes, I did say he was four years old!
I know from what his mother has told me that he has already figured a lot out on his own. This wise mother understands the true meaning of the word ‘education,’ which is: “to draw out “. She simply listens and asks him clarifying questions.
Previously when the boy was on island, he had enjoyed playing with a friend’s dog. His mother had told him in advance that this time when he visited, the dog would not be here because it had died. The boy said, “Well that’s okay. He will be born has a new baby dog.” She later overheard him talking to his favorite toy car: “Someday I’m going to get old and then I’ll die, and then I’ll be born as a little baby again. You are going to get old and die too, but you will not be born again because you’re not real.” This life view was not coached by his parents.
Like all children – and all of us adults to tell the truth – this thoughtful little boy struggles with his personality on occasion. He sometimes has irrational tantrums, knocks over his little brother, acts naughty in ways that he knows in his heart he really doesn’t want to act. When that happens, he explains to his mom that it’s his bad imagination that was acting; other times it’s his good imagination.
For an explanation of how this little boy came to have both a ‘good imagination’ and a ‘bad imagination’ when he journeyed into this life in a body from a paradise with reindeers and penguins, a place that cannot be located on a map, and that he calls ‘South of Germany’, I invite you to listen to this voice recording. [attach recording of Sonja, which needs last few seconds off]
I’m deliberately leaving off the name of this little sage, since I really don’t want him to be plagued with too many publishers wanting to arrange book deals with him! I mean, what if he had one of his tantrums on the book tours?!? Nah, I’ll just let you listen and start to recall all the childhood wisdom you once had and want to remember again.
In the Northern Hemisphere we are entering that time of year when nature is more withdrawn than bursting with new life. It’s a time when we, too, can draw inward and be more reflective. We can ‘live our questions’. Maybe you’ll even come upon some thoughts on the boy’s query: What happens after this life as a human being? Let me know what you come up with!