Conversations with Omen IX

You’ve told me a lot about how souls and their guides work out what that soul needs to learn in their next life on earth. It actually makes a lot of sense to me, and I feel like sometimes I can even glimpse what some of my objectives are. But, is there any way I can know whether I’m succeeding or failing in whatever my pre-life plan was? How can I know if I’m fulfilling what I’ve set out to learn in this life right now?

“Is there something in particular that you feel that you are not accomplishing, Thomas?”

Well, it’s just a feeling I get randomly. I realize that I don’t absolutely know what my soul-plan here is, but I do get feelings sometimes that I can’t explain. Feelings like I’m stagnant, or not going in the right direction in my life. I’ll feel like I’m receding instead of proceeding. Yet, at other times I can get a feeling of pure bliss for no reason, like everything in my life is just perfect.

“Almost all earthbound souls do not remember what their life goals are that they agreed upon with their guides. Once born into an earthly body, you must use your own feelings and experience to navigate your life plan. The feelings that you are speaking of may indeed be accurate markers of your progress, or lack of it.”

Markers? I guess I’m not sure how you mean that.

“I apologize, it is a term we all use on this side, a simplification of a complex process. A soul can only know the most significant event points of their coming earthbound life, the bulk of that life is fluid and unknowable. Your soul-group peers are important to your earthbound life, so we set markers in an attempt at recognition. As an example, your life has already crossed paths with several of your peers you have known for a very long time. Souls you feel tremendous love for, and wish to be with in your current life. But, because you otherwise may not recognize them in human form, you set markers to tip your memory. Do you remember meeting your friend Renee? You first saw a photograph of her before you met her. Do you remember having a feeling as you first looked at her photo?”

Yeah, I do, there was something about the way she looked. Her eyes and her unusual hairstyle caught my attention. Not in a ‘romantic attraction’ kind of way, but something intrigued me about her. She even told me that she had the same kind of thoughts after seeing my picture. I just had this feeling that I’d meet her in-person someday and we’d become friends.

“Of course you did, because you had both set a marker to recognize each other. Those souls that we are closest to will often intermingle with our lives – when we truly want to share some part of that life with them, markers are set to trigger some intuition between us. These are quite subtle though, and many are missed completely, written off as just an odd feeling. More experienced souls learn to trust those feelings, and move in the direction that they guide one towards.”

That actually explains a lot for me, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had those feelings around people I randomly run into. But, back to my original question which I don’t think I explained very well; sometimes I get a feeling like I’ve failed someone. Like when I look back at past relationships and the people I was in them with, and I feel like I could have, or should have done a lot better.

“When you say that you feel as if you have failed them, do you mean that you think there was a goal to achieve and you did not do so?”

I don’t know if it’s a goal per se, but when I consider some personal relationships I’ve had – especially ones that ended badly – I feel like I failed at something. It feels like there was something I was supposed to learn with them, and that it didn’t happen.

“I see. Perhaps I can frame this in a different construct for you, to aid in your understanding of your feelings. The goals of a soul’s earthbound life are indeed important, and are often not met until well in to that life. In other words, there may be many attempts in one’s life to achieve a certain goal before they are successful. However, not learning a lesson that is part of a life-goal is not a failure Thomas. Even if you went through an entire life and did not accomplish your decided goal, that life is not seen as a failure. So much more goes on in a human life, myriad interactions with other lives that cannot be judged so easily. The complex weave of the interactions of different lives is akin to a four-dimensional puzzle, and difficult for the human mind to comprehend.”

I get that part, I guess, but the other people who may have been there for me to learn from – and I didn’t – don’t they lose out on something too? I mean, had I learned whatever I was supposed to, wouldn’t they also feel like they accomplished something as well? Maybe they had a similar goal to mine, and we both missed our chance to finish it?

“I think I see where this is coming from now, Thomas. I believe you are starting from a false premise and therefore your conclusions are misguided. The ending of an intimate relationship can be quite an emotional upheaval, and it is not uncommon for one or both parties to fall into a cycle of introspection. A reexamination of difficult interactions, choices and events that may have led to the relationship ending. Blaming yourself, or the other party, can be part of the emotional recovery one goes through. However, given enough time, one may eventually gain a more balanced perspective when reconsidering the relationship.”

“Whether a relationship lasts for days, or decades, there are usually many lessons learned about oneself. Sometimes it is the very thick emotional compounds created by the individuals in the relationship that make it difficult to see those lessons until quite some time later. You are a soul of uniquely deep emotions Thomas, and I have seen you go through long periods of deep introspection after a relationship had ended for you. You spend quite a bit of time attempting to find the exact cause of the relationship’s demise, yet I have never heard you conclude that you were simply not compatible.”

You mean like a no-fault auto accident? It wasn’t me, it wasn’t her, it was just that we weren’t compatible? To answer you, I would have to say no, I’ve never come to that particular conclusion before. I guess I have always thought that two people who are attracted to each other, and who get along well, should be able to have a long term relationship. I know it’s not automatic, and it takes a lot of work, but it still seems like it should work out if both parties are willing to keep trying.

“I know you really do feel that way, but perhaps you are missing something very important. Human beings are fantastically complex Thomas, each with a unique mind and life experience. The fact that two of those beings can occasionally come together and actually have a successful long term relationship is an amazing accomplishment. More often than not, they are two souls who have had other lifetimes together where they were also close in some relationship. Occasionally, though, there are some who come together by random circumstance and have a genuine relationship blossom from it. That being said, you must realize that there are innumerable relationships that do not work out in the manner you think of as a success – many times more often than the ones that work out well.”

So, you’re saying that even if I were a completely grounded and emotionally balanced individual, that I could still have failed relationships?

“Oh Thomas, yes, of course that is true because it is not entirely up to you. Simply look at the number of psychological professionals who have lived through the ending of their own romantic relationships. As wise as they may be, and as much as they may know about themselves and others, they still have relationships that do not work out – even when the relationship might be between two of those counseling professionals. One might think that two smart and experienced emotional counselors could forge a wonderful romance, but statistically their divorce rate is somewhat higher than non-professionals. It simply is not about what you know or how hard you try, people are far too complex for that to be so.”

“Thomas, if, when you look back at your previous relationships, you find you have mistreated someone – just by recognizing that, you have learned and grown. Yes, you may have the opportunity, on occasion, to make amends to someone, but that is somewhat rare. Most of the time you do not have such a chance, but seeing your part and acknowledging it – that is growth in itself. You did not fail that person, nor yourself, when your relationship ended. Every relationship you have in your life, romantic or platonic, are all vehicles of emotional growth.”

I’ve made some bad decisions, and I even betrayed a partner once, but I’ve never been the abusive type. I’ve said things that I wish I could take back, and I have done some things out of anger too. In the case where I was unfaithful, I was pretty young and prone to bad decision making back then. I think my self-worth was based on who was attracted to me, and who I could get into bed. That particular relationship ended so badly that I didn’t have a chance to apologize to her, and I still feel a lot of guilt about it some thirty years later.

“Guilt is a form of self-punishment Thomas, based upon your inner judgments of your own behavior. It is much like remorse, which is also based on your behavior, but less in judgment. Remorse is based more in reflecting on your interactions with others and seeing how you could have done things differently. Remorse has a component of wanting to be better, and seeing how you can actually do so. You cannot truly know how any given relationship fits into the fabric of what you need to learn. After all, recovering from heartbreak in a healthy way is a very valuable lesson for one to master, as is self-forgiveness.”

Well, guilt, or remorse aside; will I have to answer to her in the afterlife once we’re both passed on?

“Again, Thomas, you are thinking in simple dualities. Right and wrong, good or bad, rewards or punishments. As we have spoken of before, those do not exist on this side. You do not answer to any other soul for the things you have done in an earthbound life. You examine your own life, learn from it, and move on from there. Each time, each life, learning greater and deeper lessons which will bring you closer to the Pure Love.”

You know, Omen, this whole process reminds me of college, taking classes and exams in order to receive a degree. I’m not trying to diminish the soul journey, but it sure is a coincidence that they seem so much the same.

“There are many human social constructs that mimic the processes on this side, Thomas. It is not coincidence so much as it is souls, in human lives, creating social structures that feel familiar to them on some level. Many souls, especially ones who have had many earthbound lives, retain vague impressions from this side. Their experience and wisdom shines through even in their human form.”

Conversations with Omen VIII

“There is a look on your face Thomas that tells me you have something to ask. Your reflections and examinations of your own life do continue to please me. I hope you always feel free to ask whatever you wish to know, I am always here for you.”

Thanks Omen, I appreciate that more than I tell you. I wasn’t holding anything back, I was just trying to figure out how to put it into a question. It’s sort of complex in its own way. It’s about religion I guess; I want to know more about the religions of the world – which I know sounds unbearably huge, so let me narrow this down a little. Give all of the different religions, not only currently, but throughout history; many of them have striking similarities amongst them. Most believe in a single and powerful god, many believe in that god having assistants of some kind, i.e., angels, minions, etc.

I’m drifting off my point a little, but I guess I’m just curious why there’s so much commonality between them, many things that are often nearly identical. Even some of the ‘new age’ spiritual beliefs have a lot in common with older more traditional religions.

“Allow me a bit of leeway with my answer Thomas, it may seem unrelated at first, but will come together soon enough. Do you remember your parents telling you the story of your birth?”

Yeah, sure I do. I guess I came out backwards with the umbilical cord wrapped around my neck and a bit blue. My dad said it was a touch-and-go situation for a little while, but that I was a fighter and pulled through.

“Indeed, from an earthbound perspective that is a fair description of the event. Let me give you a bit of a different version though, one you have not ever heard. You were stillborn Thomas, and when revived by the attending medical staff, you died again just minutes later. The emergency medical personnel were called in, revived you once again, and you have remained ever since. With that said, there is much more to the story.”

More, what more is there? Did my parents hold back some sort of gristly details?

“No, nothing of the sort Thomas, this part is from my perspective. As you now know, I have been your guide for quite some time. I was the last one to be with you before your new earthbound life began, perhaps think of it as me being there to see you off. You had gone through a particularly difficult life in your previous incarnation, and you were not without some reservations about beginning this one so soon afterwards. We had both agreed that this was the direction that you would most benefit from choosing this specific life. Yet, in my opinion you were still in a recuperative stage – which is not completely unusual for a soul who had been through a lot. And, we had agreed that because the beginning of this life was, how shall I say it? Uneventful for quite some time, that you would be fine.”

Wait, you and I talked about my future life here before I was actually born?

“Yes Thomas, as your guide I would naturally be the one to review not only your past life, but also help you choose and acclimate to your next one. But, I now have come to realize that you were not completely ready to become earthbound again. At your moment of birth you were still struggling with some of the landmarks of your new life. You were literally late for your birth, and you were clearly unconcerned by it.”

What was the problem? Was I having second thoughts about it? Did I find out something bad was going to happen in my future and changed my mind?

“No Thomas, nothing so dramatic or purposeful. Sometimes after a particularly challenging lifetime, a soul can be overwhelmed, so to speak, by coming home. The afterlife is so very different from an earthbound one, so dramatically different that it can be a massive shift for a soul. The warmth, the sounds, the feelings are all completely different here. Suddenly you are awash in a constant feeling of love and complete acceptance. You are instantly reunited with souls you have known since you were first created, existence-long friends. It takes even experienced guides, fresh back from an earthbound life, a bit of time to re-acclimate to this long familiar home.”

“Typically you feel like it has been a very long time since you have seen and felt all of this, but then you readjust to time here, and realize it has not been very long at all. It just takes some time to readjust to everything that is the afterlife. I do believe that in your case, Thomas, you may have needed more time here. I think that you were still taking comfort from us, and that you began to feel unsafe at your birth moment. When I spoke to you at that moment, you feigned some resolve and went to your body. That was the first of your resuscitations, but you knew you had not been completely honest with me, and you left that body again to reach out to me.”

I was scared, and I wanted to come back?

“I am not sure that scared is the term I would use, perhaps unsure and unsettled are better choices. You came to me with some questions, but they were superficial ones that I saw through. You were over-thinking your future paths, and were asking for reassurance. We took a moment to revisit your goals and life plan, and to reconnect you to your own drive. You have always been a passionate soul Thomas, and that level of keen intensity works both for, and against you at times. When you commit you do so fully and completely, but when you have unanswered questions – well, you are prone to over think things, and hesitate at the gate. Simply put, you got to re-know this place and did not wish to be without all of it again. You began to think about what you would be missing by starting the earthbound life.”

Well, I’m really curious about what you said to me to convince me to come back and live my life here? It must have been one heck of a speech, or did you just push me into my little baby-body and lock me in there?

“That is very funny Thomas, and I know that you know me better than that. I, neigh, we as guides, would never coerce, or worse, force any soul to take an earthbound life they did not want. I can also assure you that I did not need to make, as you said, a heck of a speech to you.  I am not at liberty to tell you what it was I did say to you, but suffice it to say that it was brief and to the point. You accepted my reassurance and reoccupied that new little life, much to the joy of every single person in that room.”

Of course, I have no memory of any of that, from either side of the veil, but I can picture in my mind how happy my parents must have been. If I haven’t said it before now, I’m happy you said whatever it was you did to convince me to live though. Overall it’s been a pretty good life in my opinion. But, what does any of this have to do with what I asked you at first?

“Your two ‘miss-starts’ we will call them, were seen as two near-death experiences by everyone who cared to know the story. That is what brings us around to my somewhat circuitous answer to your question. Near-death experiences allow a soul a brief glimpse of the afterlife, a glimpse that is usually forgotten by the time they are firmly back in their earthbound body. But, every so often, someone will retain some bits of memory of what they saw, or felt there. Some remember the wonderful feeling of it, and others remember the sounds or even some of the things they saw there. The person’s mind tries to make sense of what they remember, but with no earthly experience to compare it to they often embellish.”

You mean they make stuff up, or fantasize things that they didn’t really see?

“Nothing so calculated I think, more along the lines of superimposed images of earthly things laid atop other images that do not make perfect sense. Take the image of angels as an example, men and women with majestic wings. Most often depicted as wearing pure white robes, and glowing halos above their heads. I think that you know from our many conversations that there would be no need for wings in the afterlife, Thomas. But, there do exist some higher guides who most often appear as tall and angular glowing light. I certainly can imagine a human remembering this as a person in white with tall wings. The human mind fills in familiar images where the abstract is too difficult to understand.”

In other words, people see an abstract form of light and later imagine an angel? Interesting. I can understand that from my own experience of when I first saw you many years ago. That very night I was sure about what I has seen and heard, but the following week I was already turning everything into something that made more sense to me.

“Now, I am sure you can also imagine that near-death experiences are not a new phenomenon amongst humans. From the time that your people were quite primitive, and just existing day to day was a dangerous challenge, they have also had near-death experiences. In the cases of the primitive humans, they would describe to their families what they remembered about being dead, but with lesser language skills it was difficult. Add, also, that they were often feared by their own people for simply surviving an event that the others believed should have killed them. But, they did not die, and were suddenly trying to tell a tale of an experience so abstract… well, they were often cast out, or worse.”

“Interestingly though, their tales lived on well past their own lives, past on from person to person for centuries. As you know, stories that are shared over time are also embellished by the different tellers. Pillars of light get wings attached to them, and are wearing pure white robes – a color that was very rare for many centuries. To some the stories were fantastic and wonderful, but to others they were frightening and dangerous tales. The notion of a consciousness after death was both exciting and frightening. They began to imagine their ancestors still living as they were when they were alive, but just invisibly. This led to the first polytheist beliefs in many societies as ancestors were elevated to a supernatural status, and imbued with various powers and control.”

“I also believe that those souls who remembered bits of the afterlife, some who had felt the warmth and love there, began to remember the Pure Love, who they simply named God. This archetype caught on in many societies around your world, with only minor variations. A singular and powerful God who had shaped everything around them, and often was believed to control all things both natural and human. For better or worse God was overseeing every aspect of human life, and not long afterwards He suddenly laid down rules to live by as well.”

So, are you telling me that the Ten Commandments are not straight from the Pure Love?

“I do not think you find that idea difficult to believe, Thomas. Perhaps you were kidding with me by asking that, but I will answer you anyway. No, they did not come from the Pure Love, they were imagined by many people over a very long period of time. In my own opinion, six of the ten were useful tenants to live by for most societies. But, as we have spoken of already, the Pure Love does not impose rules upon souls, thereby making right and wrong.”

I know that much, Omen. I’m still absorbing some of that concept even today. A being that only loves, nurtures and teaches others how to be like it is… it’s a massive sea change for me. But, back to my original question, you’re saying that the world’s religions are based on the stories that people told after near-death experiences? That’s amazing to me.

“I do believe it is another concept you will continue to ruminate on, but will eventually accept in your heart. If you consider the best parts of each religion’s tenants, teachings and lore, you will put together a puzzle that forms Pure Love.”

Conversations with Omen VII

What about the people who have done horrible things? Like the Genghis Kahn’s, or the Hitler’s? Maybe even just regular people in any given city who might be abusing children or beating their spouses; are they all part of the grand plan? I mean there have been, and still are some unbelievably screwed up people in this world, and it’s hard to see how the misery they inflict is meant to teach the rest of us something about being better souls.

“I was wondering when you might get to this question, Thomas. This is another concept that is difficult for the earthbound to understand fully. Not because you lack the ability to understand it, but because of your social and mental paradigm surrounding what you call evil. If I tell you that the concept of evil is a human construction, I can imagine that somewhere in your mind you are disagreeing with me strongly. Human societies, throughout time have embraced the idea of evil, and its effects on people. The idea has been around so long that most cannot easily accept that it is a human construction.”

Okay, I’ve got to admit, you’re right about me thinking that what you’re saying is wrong. I mean, how can there not be evil? We see it all the time, in the news, in history, and even in our own lives on occasion. There are just plain evil people out there; I just don’t see how you can say there’s not.

“Let me see if I can explain it differently for you. Beginning with the word Evil; that is the social construction I am speaking of. To label someone as evil is only saying that whatever deed they have done goes so far against current social morals and laws – that you basically have no other term for them. Think of it as labeling them as someone who will not conform to the laws and values of your society. Even humanity’s most grievous offence, murder, can be seen as perpetrated by someone who does not value the life of another. The term evil is a catch-all label for those persons who have done the most egregious acts against others.”

So, you’re saying that I’m too hung up on the term ‘evil’? Okay, I can accept that. I can see how it’s a label for people who’ve done the worst stuff, but even with no label, they’ve still done awful things to other people. I mean, taking someone’s life, or the lives of people you know or care about, is still really messed-up! Removing all the labels from their actions doesn’t change what they’ve done, Omen. Some really bad people deserve to pay a price for what they’ve done.

“I am not simply asking you to forget the terms you use for those people, Thomas. I am attempting to get you to see that those are real people who chose to defy what the rest of a society has decided are the most important values and principles to be followed. They made very bad choices, and perhaps in some cases should be isolated from the society they lived in, but so many of your punishments are simply socially sanctioned revenge, Thomas.”

“Perhaps if you consider the term ‘wrong’ as an example; since it implies that there is a ‘correct’ that balances it. To be wrong indicates that there is a right way to be, to do something wrong implies that there is a right way to do it. One might say that it is wrong to murder another human being, therefore to be right is to never murder another. Are you with me so far?”

Yeah, I get it, go on.

“Can you imagine a society forming where murdering someone is not seen as wrong? Perhaps even seen as an honorable act?”

Hmm, I don’t know Omen, that’s a tough one. I’d like to think that even primitive people just knew that killing another person without just-cause is wrong.

“Then it will surprise you to learn that there have been several societies in human history where killing someone was not always wrong. Even those who were friends, or family members, still could be killed in what was seen as an honorable fashion. In many cases the person committing the murder would actually inherit the reputation of the victim they had slain. Was it still murder in those societies? Even more recently in your own society the concept of an honorable duel was an approved method for settling certain social transgressions. Was it still a moral offense in a social system where it was approved of? My questions are rhetorical of course, and aimed to help you see this issue in a different light. Simply to allow you to think about how your own idea of what is wrong or immoral is a product of the society you were raised in.”

I don’t know about that Omen, I mean, taking someone’s life under any circumstance seems pretty immoral to me. Unless they’re trying to kill me, for no apparent reason – which then would be self-defense, I don’t think we should kill people.

“What if a murderous person was attempting to kill your child, or your spouse? Would you kill them?”

Well, yeah, I probably would, but I’d blame a lack of emotional control in those cases. I think protecting someone you really love is a special circumstance.

“Therefore you can now see that even in the modern and evolved society that you were raised in; there are still circumstances that allow for the taking of another’s life. There exist situations where killing someone is not against your laws, not even morally wrong.”

Yeah, I guess so.

“I now believe that you will be further surprised to know that here, in what you call the afterlife, there is no wrong at all. There are no mistakes, no misdeeds, no crimes, and no immorality. Every choice that a soul makes is part of their growth process, but no matter what, there simply is no wrong.”

So a soul can do whatever the hell they want to and they never get in any trouble?

“In only the most generous manner of speaking, Thomas. Perhaps if I illustrate it in a different manner it will become easier to understand. Think about raising a human infant; now think about what types of things they do that are just wrong. What sorts of trouble would a baby get into?”

None, really. Babies don’t do things wrong, or immoral – ever.

“Yet, is it possible that a baby would not nurse correctly? Can they refuse to eat the food offered to them? Do they ever crawl off to places you would rather they had not gone to? These are all things that a parent might wish would never happen, but they do happen. Yet the parent typically does not punish the infant for such infractions. Please understand that I am not saying that souls, at whatever stage of development they might be at, are directly comparable to infants. Just a similar mindset when it comes to how their digressions are seen.”

So then, the souls living on earth now, if they choose to do terrible things in their lifetimes, they’re not punished in the afterlife?

“No Thomas, they are not punished. The concept of a retribution filled afterlife is another human creation, or folklore. Remember, it is all about learning, growing, fulfilling a soul-destiny that is set before us by the True Love. What point would there be in an eternal punishment for a soul that had been judged as evil? How would that ever make them a better soul? Rather, we have a system set in place for an extensive review of the life of the soul in question, to enlighten and educate. The process can be quite long depending upon the quantity of behaviors to be reviewed.”

So, you’re telling me that a guy like Hitler dies and just gets a peer review of his life? A bunch of academics standing around telling him how he could have made better choices? That’s just bullshit in my opinion, Omen.

“I am truly surprised by your reaction Thomas, I was not expecting this level of aggression in you. Please tell me what it is that makes you feel this kind of anger.”

It’s just unfair, that’s pretty much it. I mean a guy is responsible for the deaths of literally millions of people, and he’s going to get a good talking-to in the afterlife, that’s just awesome.

“Can you go a bit deeper Thomas? What is causing the vehement anger in you over this concept?”

Omen, most societies on this planet have some form of punishment for people who break laws, especially the ones that murder other people. I guess the thought of a guy like Hitler, who killed himself before he could be captured and punished; well it just makes me mad to think that nothing bad happens to him after that. It’s almost like he gets away with it since there’s no suffering for him, even though he caused massive suffering in others.

“I see, please allow me to delve further into this; if a convicted murderer eventually gets the death penalty, your ultimate punishment, does that make what happens here in the afterlife feel better for you?”

No! I mean, not really, I guess. I think some guys deserve both things – the death penalty here, and everlasting misery there too.

“By your thinking then, a person who murders others, is caught, tried and convicted, then served with the death penalty should also suffer in their afterlife as well? Yet, given that construct, in what way would that soul ever become more enlightened? How would it ever get closer to the Pure Love if they are sequestered in some dark place forever?”

I don’t know, Omen. I guess I haven’t really thought the whole thing through. It’s just that some people are actually evil, in my book anyway. Those kind of people who do heinous things and seem to have no remorse about it. I guess I’d just feel a hell of a lot better if I knew they were going to be drowning in molten lava for the rest of eternity.

“So, here we are back at retribution and revenge, Thomas. The ancient human construct of an ‘eye for an eye’ is where socially sanctioned revenge may have first begun. Much like what is called group-think, the notion was that if an entire social group believed that a murderer should themselves be murdered, to punish them, then it was a good idea. Quite simplistic, yet an effective justification for a revenge killing disguised as a legal punishment. But, when asked at some point after the execution has taken place, many people close to the original crime victim do not report ‘feeling better’ because of it. It seems that killing the killer brings very little comfort to the grieving.”

Ugh, this is hurting my brain Omen, I’m trying hard to get what you’re saying, but it’s hard for me. I understand that killing a killer doesn’t make a family ‘all better’ because of it, but at least one killer will never wander the streets again. I know you’re going to say that putting them in prison for the rest of their lives does the same thing, and that’s right, but… Damn, I do get it now.

We tell ourselves that we’ll all feel better by executing a really bad criminal, because we’re making sure they can’t ever do it again. But, there’s more to it than that, somehow we want them dead – locked away forever doesn’t seem like ‘enough punishment’ to most of us. We actually desire them to suffer the ultimate punishment, depriving them of life itself. Revenge… It’s just revenge, like you said.

“I am pleased you are beginning to see it differently Thomas, you are far to evolved of a soul to remain hindered by social conventions. I appreciate your willingness to wrestle with new concepts that you find difficult and challenging to your current thinking.”

Thanks, I’m still processing everything though, but I can see how it is probably a much higher and more evolved way of thinking you guys have there. I mean, I can admit that it’s a lot better idea to work with a soul to get them to see how their choices affected other people. To be able to ‘bring them around’ so to speak is great. You end up with a good soul who can go on to live better lives, and maybe even help humanity the next time around. That’s a pretty good goal you have there.

“We are all on a path emulate the True Love, Thomas. There is either stagnation, or there is growth, but there is no regression.”

So, there’s hope for everybody then, right? No matter how bad they were in one life, they can be educated and possibly have a better one next time?

“Yes, and it has been that way for a very long time. In fact, you might be interested to know something more about this process. Allow me to give you a glimpse of hopeful future. There are some amazing places where you will eventually live out a life in your future progression. One in particular that I am thinking of is a place where there is no ‘crime’ at all. It is an entire planet of beings that do not ever transgress. No crime, no murders, no abuses of any kind. They all live out their lives in a peaceful and purposeful environment. If you can, picture beings with no egos, no reason for conflict, and no motivation to ever harm another. They view every single other being as their exact equal, fully deserving of respect.  I imagine that you will truly be amazed by it someday, Thomas.”


Conversations with Omen VI

There’s something I really don’t understand about people’s earth lives. You’ve explained in general terms how things work with souls choosing the lives they’re going to live, and the lessons they need to learn. I think I understand most of that, but I watched a news program the other night about this kid, and now I’m confused again. The kid was born with a terrible genetic disorder that basically left him in terrible pain every day of his life. His parents had to take care of him his whole short life, and they too had to endure seeing their child in pain each day.

“Yes, this is truly a difficult concept for the earthbound to understand fully. Naturally every living human being seeks to have an easier and better life, and they do so throughout their entire lives. You cannot begin to understand why anyone would choose to live a life of pain, poverty, abuse or fear. On top of all of that, it being a child even further confounds you. Perhaps you can tell me what you do understand, and we can move through it together and examine the areas that cause you confusion?”

Like I said, you’ve told me how souls have some choice in the lives they’re going to live out. Not a total preview or anything, but a good idea of how the life is going to play out, and some of its significant events. That’s about where I start to have an issue with it though; like what conscientious soul would willingly pick a life that’s filled with pain? Why choose a life that not only has a lot of pain for them, but causes a different kind of pain for people who are part of their own family?

“Allow me to begin by saying that your term ‘causing’ pain to others is somewhat misguided and inaccurate. In a general way you are correct about a conscientious soul not choosing a life that would ‘cause’ pain to others. Where your understanding goes awry is in thinking that there is a moral component involved in pain. I will clarify that; of course physical pain is heavy burden to bear in a human life, especially lifelong pain. I also understand that the subject you spoke of, being a child, further adds to your misunderstanding. You were brought up in a society that believes that children’s lives should be trouble-free, but that belief is far from the reality of actual lives.

“Let me start at the beginning of a life, to illustrate not only the process, but also the thinking behind any life-choice. When a soul is ready to inhabit an earthbound life they are offered choices, typically based upon an agreement between that soul and their guide. Those decisions are based on both the soul’s last life, and what they believe needs to be accomplished by living out another life. Now it is my understanding, both from direct experience, and observation, that all lives have times of pain and misery in them. They simply differ in type, degree and frequency, but there are simply no pain-free lives.”

Sure, I get all of that about all people having pain in their lives, but some people have lives that look like they’re mostly pain-filled. Why would a soul choose a life like that if there’s another one they could have taken on with less agony?

“There are a number of reasons that a soul might choose a life that has a high level of difficulty in it, Thomas. It may surprise you to know that in many cases the soul that chose the life was under no obligation to live out another earthbound life either. They are often occupied by a guide-level soul who knows exactly what that existence will be like. That is a fact that is important for you to remember too, because not all lives are lived for the benefit of the occupying soul. A great number of lives that you might judge as difficult ones are lived out for the benefit of others.”

How the heck do others benefit from seeing a kid in pain every day? It just sounds cruel to me.

“I can assure you Thomas that it is far from cruel. Furthermore, there is a wealth that can be learned from attending to people who are in pain. As an example, the child you spoke of; the parents of that child have likely learned volumes about themselves and their child too. Can you imagine the pride you might feel as you witness your child’s bravery in the face of such pain? Can you imagine how your own sense of what pain is might change from such a situation? I surely cannot outline all of the potential lessons that might be learned from that one short life you cited, but just know that its affects are far and wide.

“You mentioned that the child you spoke of was on a news program; even that in itself can affect so many other lives, Thomas. There may well be others who saw the same program and were profoundly affected by the child’s story. Just understanding another’s pain is a difficult lesson for many. I know that all humans understand pain, but to truly listen to another describe their pain, to fully absorb their experience is quite difficult for most to do. People may listen and nod their heads, understanding only on the most superficial level what they have heard. But, to really ‘get’ what someone is going through when they have chronic pain is a more profound level of understanding.

“It has been my observation that a great number of people grow weary of hearing about another’s chronic pain. I believe the reason for this is because they have not experienced great physical or emotional pain in their own lives yet. It can be hard to empathize with someone when their experience differs greatly from your own. Yet, there are some remarkable souls who manage to do just that, and do it to great depths too. You may have seen in your own life certain people who seem to naturally have a deep sense of understanding and sympathy for others. Many of that type can even extend their genuine emotion to those that they do not know – complete strangers who may live on the other side of the globe from them. That is a beautiful rarity.”

So, this is a ‘ripples on the surface of the pond’ kind of thing? A person who suffers from some kind of malady will affect lots of other folks all around them? I understand that on one level, but on another level I still think it’s kind of cruel to have one person suffering so other people can potentially learn from them.

“I believe you are over simplifying the example, Thomas. Do you imagine that the child you saw is only suffering each minute of its life? Are you thinking that he or she never had any pleasurable times, or did not feel the love and comfort of their parents? Because, if you are imagining it that way, I think you are short-changing that person’s life. In fact, in the specific case you are speaking about, I can assure you that the child felt a profound bond with both of his parents, and even some of the people who helped care for him too.”

I didn’t think about like that, but I guess it’s possible that it’s a good thing – in a weird way. I’m getting lost in my own thoughts now because of what you said about understanding other people’s pain. I had a friend with fibromyalgia who was always in some level of pain. I remember her telling me all about it one day, and after that I’d ask her about how she was doing, but she usually just said ‘fine’. I felt like she didn’t want to talk about it anymore than she did, so I took the hint and stopped asking. I lost touch with her sometime after that, and then a few years later I heard that she’d committed suicide due to the pain. I really had no idea that she was suffering like that, and I feel bad now that I didn’t ask her more about it.

“Many people in chronic or constant pain begin to feel isolated from the other people around them. They look at others as ‘normal’ people, and set themselves apart from them. Your friend, by telling you about her condition was reaching out to you – probably seeing how you would react to her truth. If you seemed anxious to change the subject, or looked impatient, you may have sent her a signal that you were not available as an emotional resource to her. Again, it is one of the ways that some begin to feel as if they are truly alone in their personal struggle. Please understand, I am not saying this to make you reexamine your behavior with her, but to help you understand why she may not have ever brought it up again.”

But, if I had listened to her more carefully, and asked questions… if I’d have been genuinely interested in what was going on with her… she might not have…

“Thomas, you have no way of knowing such a thing. Our paths are far too complicated to make simple logic leaps such as that. You do not know if she had other close friends who were available to her, correct?”

No, I don’t know if she did or not. I hadn’t seen her in about three years since she left the office we both worked at.

“Her challenge may have been to learn to allow others into her emotional space – to be able to trust that some people genuinely wanted to support her. Perhaps she chose suicide because she was not able to do that? She may have felt isolated when there were actually others around her that wanted to be closer and help her. I do not want to speculate further, I believe that what is important is what you will eventually take away from examining your interaction with her. As you sort through how you feel about that past event, you may find that there is still something to learn from it. Something positive that you may have overlooked until now.”

In all honesty Omen, I don’t think I shorted her when we first talked about her fibromyalgia. I even went home and looked up more information about it, so I could talk to her again and actually know something. I don’t think I sent any wrong signals to her, at least none I remember now. When I asked her how she was doing, I made sure we were alone so no one overheard us. I thought that maybe she blew me off because I asked her at work. I just got a vibe from her that said ‘don’t ask me’. Still, I think about how I could have tried again later, just to be sure.

“Thomas, all lives are filled with endless possibilities – you could almost go mad rethinking all of your past decisions. I find it better to see what you chose, and appreciate the choice you made then. For better or worse, it was all part of a process that is ongoing still. Just by reexamining your choices you have the potential to better yourself, and make different decisions in the future. That is one of the true natures of our process as designed by the True Love.


Conversations with Omen V

After we die and leave earth, what happens to everything we were emotionally attached to? I mean, I have a lot of material objects that I really, um, love. I know, I know, we’re not really supposed to be attached to inanimate objects – and even if we are, we don’t really ‘love’ them… but I think you know what I’m asking here. Is there a little bit of me that’s imbued into my possessions?

“Thomas, first I must tell you that emotional feelings are the highest and most pure of our gifts from the Pure Love. It is my belief that what you have heard about loving inanimate objects comes from the psychology of attachment theory. An abnormal attachment to a non-living object can indeed be unhealthy to the human mind. Yet, feeling positive emotion towards something that is treasured by you is just a different expression of loving emotions. Quite often the objects we become attached to are those that were somehow related to another being that we loved.”

Yeah, okay, you get it. I was actually thinking about some things that I inherited from my parents. I have some of my mother’s kitchen things, and my father’s tools and guns. I love those things, they give me really warm and positive feelings when I handle them. I think of my mom or dad every time I touch them.

“Of course they do, objects that belonged to those you cared about, and that were handled with love will retain the resonance of that soul who used them. The objects themselves contain some of the energy of the soul, or souls that used them before you. This is akin to the concept of recordings of music that you enjoy – many different energies can be transferred into certain valued objects.”

Sometimes the feelings I get are pretty strong too. It’s like my dad is there with me when I use one of the things he owned. A few times I’ve even felt like he really was actually there with me, watching and smiling. I know that probably sounds kind of crazy, and I’m just imagining it, but it has felt pretty real to me.

“Most likely you are not imagining it, Thomas. The objects of which you are speaking of have a very direct conduit to your parents, and they are summoning them as you handle each one. Think of it like a direct connection to their soul in this case. By both handling the object, and also thinking of the person it belonged to, you are essentially summoning them to your side. These are connections with the living that we truly enjoy, being called upon by one of the people that you loved so much in life here. The souls of your parents can feel you thinking about them, and they come to you at those times.”

Wow, I mean I have felt it before, but I didn’t actually allow myself to believe it could be real. I didn’t believe that they were actually there with me, but it makes sense now. Hey, after I’m gone, if someone here uses something of mine and thinks about me, will I come to them?

“I cannot answer future questions for you Thomas, but I can allow myself to speculate a bit. I believe that you will come to those that cared about you in the times that they need you. You have a caring heart, and you have a loving soul – those things remain in you always.”

How does that work exactly? I mean, do you actually hear me in some way, or is it just a feeling you get?

“It is very complicated Thomas, and it would be quite hard for me to explain it in a way that you would understand completely. I hope it will suffice to say that we just know immediately when you think of one of us here, and we come to your side.”

Wow, how do you get anything else done if you’re always popping down here every time someone thinks about you? Wouldn’t that take up a lot of your time?

“Time is different here, it is not at all the same as when one is earthbound. If I appeared at your side each and every time you thought of me Thomas, I would still be participating in all of my duties here as well. I would not be missing out on anything by spending time with you. As I said, it is somewhat complicated, but perhaps through more conversations you will begin to understand better.”

Well, is it like you can be in two places at the same time?

“You might see it that way, but that is not what is truly happening. Yet, on some level I do believe that might work as a mental image for you to dwell upon. It is somewhat like being in two places at one time, but only if you are seeing time as a linear constant. The typical way that the earthbound experience time in their lives, but just remember that time is not experienced in the same way everywhere.”

Wow, that’s so strange to think about, I mean I think a lot of our physics is based on time being a constant in the universe. What you’re saying would throw off a whole bunch of science here, or at least change a lot of theories.

“As with every race of beings, there are many scientists who are pursuing the origins and laws of the universe, and, in almost every case those theories are both living and plastic, ever changing with newly discovered information. I do believe that science will go on unimpeded as it usually has. Although there are many things that exist outside of scientific theory, and time as a constant is one of those things.”


“For the purpose of an explanation, allow me to use a lay-example that you might have experienced yourself. It is a common adage amongst humans that ‘time flies when you are having fun’ – as the reverse also applies, that time seems to go much slower when you are unoccupied, or bored, as you say. The two concepts illustrate that depending on how occupied your mind is seems to affect your perception of the passage of time. Yet, as almost a counter argument, many people say that at some point in their lives, when they were experiencing a traumatic event, time seemed to slow dramatically. Lastly, add to those perceptions, the accepted fact that humans do not perceive the passage of time while they sleep.”

“All of those examples are based on experiences that human beings have reported over centuries of existence. They illustrate that many people experience time inconsistently at various periods in their lives. Nothing about the experiences they reported actually altered the earth’s motion around your sun, or time as measured in some other astronomical way.  It was their own perception of the passage of time in those specific moments, but perhaps not only that. Perhaps it lies amongst the possibilities of the universe that time can be altered, and experienced singularly as well.”

Okay, my head hurts now. I was with you through the ‘time flies’ part, but trying to imagine time as experienced both together with everyone else, and also singularly… that is blowing my mind. I was taught that time was the one constant in the universe, as if it’s experienced exactly the same way everywhere. I never even considered that there were other possibilities, especially not here in the human world. I think I need a nap now.

Conversations with Omen IV

You’ve said that there’s life all over the universe, right? So, here on earth there’s like seven billion people, and if there’s even more people out there, then there must be tens of billions of souls.

“Yes Thomas, there are more souls than I can give an accounting of. In your terms it would be a vast number that would be hard for you to easily accept.”

Okay, well that made me wonder about something; if there’s that many souls out there, how do you keep in contact with them? I mean, I know you personally don’t have to talk to them all, but I’m guessing that what you call the Pure Love must know them all.

“You are correct about my not needing to be in contact with all souls, but I do have responsibility for more than you might guess. The answer to your question is a complicated one, but I will attempt to do so with an analogy based on my role here. The souls that I watch over are in many places at any given point in time. If you think of communication in earthly terms then it would seem impossible to be in touch with all of them. But, that is not how it works here.

“In terms you can understand, it is comparable to your thinking of someone you know and having them appear before you instantly. If I were to need to speak with Seth about something, I think of him and I am there with him. The part I believe you may have a hard time understanding is that he remains where he is, as do I.”

So, it’s like telepathy? A psychic connection to the other person?

“It is so much more than that Thomas. We truly are together for the time we are communicating, but we are separate as well. For souls that are living a life that is not on earth, we can do the same thing as they go about their physical lives. It’s only the earthbound that we do not have this ability with – hence you and I meeting here as you sleep.”

Wow, so, on other planets they can hear you in their minds at any time?

“That is an approximation of the concept, and it will do for our conversations sake.”

That makes earth sound like we’re the beginner’s planet. Like we’re not advanced enough to be able to do things that are common in other places.

“There is no value judgement inherent in the abilities of the earthbound, Thomas. All souls are learning and growing, and each place that they take on a life has different challenges and accomplishments. There are souls that have begun their journey on other worlds, and then chosen a life on earth – they have no advantage over one that began their journey on earth. In my opinion, they may be at a small disadvantage when compared to the earth-originated soul. Humanity is a very complicated system of life Thomas, and it is full of extremes. Many other places are nothing like it; in fact no other place I have ever been is like it.”

I guess it’s good to know we’re not the kindergarten of the universe. But, what makes life here so unique, so different than elsewhere?

“That is an excellent question Thomas, and difficult to answer with any specificity. I would have to say that the word ‘depth’ might be a starting point for us. Humans have a depth of many characteristics that are not found in other beings. Your emotions combined with the physical sensations or reactions to them, are very unique. Many souls choose to live many lives on earth to explore the vastness of those feelings. In turn, souls new to an earthly life are often recognized by their self-limiting of their emotions and reactions.”

“You must understand something important here, humanity is one of the few types of beings in the universe that has such emotions, and places such a high importance on them as well. The greater numbers of social beings do not require or place high importance on having an emotional connection before mating, or creating a family unit. These are not primitive or somehow backwards societies I am speaking of, but highly intelligent beings of ancient descent. When souls from those planets decide to choose a life in earth, they are often quite socially awkward and unpracticed at forming relationships.”

I think everyone I’ve ever dated was from another planet after hearing that.

“That seems statistically impossible Thomas.”

It was a joke Omen, just a joke. Don’t they have jokes or humor where you’re at?

“Thomas, there are certain souls that are filled with humor and laughter. I do not mean to give an image of a person who constantly makes jokes, but rather a soul that is just bright with joy and laughter. Your soul is like that Thomas, and I can see and hear it coming through even now.”

Great, well a lot of good it’s done me so far.

“Cynicism covers up pain Thomas, have you experienced pain from your humor?”

I’m not sure I’d say pain, but it hasn’t always been an asset for me. Well, let me rephrase that; it’s an asset to me personally because my own humor keeps my internal spirits up. It’s also been good when I’m with my friends, or meeting new people. On the other hand, it’s sometimes been a detriment in professional situations. A lot of people in the business world don’t think that a guy who’s funny is a serious person – nor can they be. It’s a weird prejudice that I’ve run into a few times in my life. I’d see upper management pick some other guy for a big project – one who was less experienced than me. When I asked around to see why, I heard that they didn’t think ‘the funny guy’ would be a good project manager.

“I believe you are correct Thomas when you said it is a prejudice you experienced. There is no true logic behind that belief, no data to support it – the very definition of a prejudice. The people who own or run businesses would be better positioned for success if they realized that a person with a humorous and joyful soul makes the work environment a better experience for those around them.”

It’s good to hear you say that Omen, it’s something I’ve thought myself for a long time. But I can’t say that very many others subscribe to my point of view.

Thomas, do you remember when you tried Lysergic acid for the first time? Your mind was filled with old stories you had heard about people having ‘bad trips’ as you called it. You told me you were worried that you might discover that you had a ‘dark side’ that you had been repressing. Yet the night you finally tried it, you found that you had a completely positive experience. You laughed and played for hours and hours before it wore off. I think you discovered that you actually have a joyful soul that radiates humor and warmth.”

In all honesty I’ve felt that way sometimes too, I just never thought about it very deeply. I love to have fun, and I love making people laugh, or smile at least. I don’t do it to be the center of attention, or for some deep seated need to be liked by everyone. I just have my own kind of fun I guess. I’ve just never understood why some people seem like it’s the worst quality a person can have.

“Thomas, you are savvy enough to know that people with inner pain and trauma are not the ones who are looking to laugh. For many souls such as that, what they actually seek is ‘sameness’ from others who also harbor inner pain. You represent the opposite of those people, you are free of inner trauma and able to laugh whenever you choose to. That is a choice some souls do not feel that they have.”

Conversations with Omen III

Can I ask you an odd question? I mean, it’s kind of silly, but it’s something I’ve thought about on and off over the years…

“Certainly Thomas, although you already know I cannot reveal the future to you, or allow you to know what another human’s private thoughts are.”

Yeah, um, it’s not about any of those things. You’re going to laugh actually, it’s so dumb, but I still can’t help wondering about it – especially after meeting and getting to know you.

“You do seem unusually uncomfortable Thomas, and there is no need to be so.”

Alright, yeah, you’re right I guess. Well, um, here it goes… Since you guys can pop in and out of our lives, and you can watch us and we don’t’ even know it… I mean, can you even see us when we’re being, um, intimate with ourselves, or if we’re just trying something new and personal?

“You are generally referring to when you are masturbating I assume?”

Well, yeah that’s pretty much it. I mean, I just figure that you must see about everything we do here, and I don’t mean me per se, but there’s probably a lot of folks who do some pretty odd stuff. Stuff I’m sure that goes on all over the world, not just here…

“This is actually a very fine question Thomas. I do hope your embarrassment will subside as I answer it. There really is no reason for such discomfort. The short answer is yes, we do see our earthbound souls engaged in a wide variety of activities that they almost certainly would not wish to be observed doing. You need to keep in mind that guides, such as myself, have all had earthly lives, sometimes many of them. Furthermore, we have all experienced every single urge, curiosity and drive that you and others have. We have all done the exact things that many of you do now, and we understand the deeper physical nature of it.”

Okay, but what about people that knew us? Like family members who’ve passed away already, will they see us doing things too? I just have this horrible image in my mind of my mother seeing me…

“I am not quite sure how to completely assuage your fears Thomas, other than to tell you that your mother’s soul is not a guide, and that even if it were, there would still be no judgement made. You are applying uniquely human qualities to us, and they do not fit here. You are seeing the situations you describe through human mores, and your own social stigmas. When we come to visit an earthbound soul, we are seeing you through the eyes of love and understanding. We have a completely different perspective than you do Thomas, no matter what may be going on in your life.”

Okay, I am being intentionally extreme for a minute, but it’ll help me understand this better; what if you pop in and I’m doing something really weird, like with an animal or a doll?

“Thomas… You do not need to create extreme examples for me to consider. My answer will remain unchanged in each case. We understand more than you do, we see a larger picture than you can. There are layer upon layer of complicated lives and timelines that weave together in incomprehensible complex patterns – yet all are on a unique path to some greater understanding. You may not know it, they may not know it, but it is all intertwined in a fabric that Pure Love has created for us all.”

Pure Love? I didn’t know that love can create things, well, other than more love, or some happiness. I also don’t understand how love could create people who do really sick or dangerous stuff their whole lives. What the hell does that have to do with Pure Love?

“I may have gotten ahead of myself when I said that. It requires more understanding of certain aspects than you are familiar with. The Pure Love is what created all things at the beginning. It has many names, but for my purposes I use Pure Love as the name for it. All souls are made from it, and in a sense are a small piece of it as well. Each soul is on a path of learning and understanding unique to itself, and often that path is unknown to nearly all observers.”

Look Omen, I like the way this sounds, but it’s super hard for me to see how some guy like Hitler was on any kind of path of learning or understanding anything. There are people on earth who are just completely evil and twisted inside, and I just can’t see how they can be learning anything but how to be more evil.

“Once again Thomas, the concept of ‘evil’ is a human paradigm that does not truly exist beyond earth. I do agree that there are lives that do not appear to do anything more that cause harm, mayhem and grief for others. They may cause the deaths of many others, or a specific few – yet in each case they cause immense grief and suffering in many others. From your perspective you can only see the harmful consequences of their actions, the wakes of misery and destruction they leave. From our perspective we see so much more, and I am afraid there is much I cannot explain at this time. Suffice it to say that each and every person that has been, or will be touched by a tragedy, is on a path of learning that you cannot see. You have an expression about hard times making people stronger; that’s something to keep in mind when you think about situations such as you described.”

So, evil people may be here to start the ball rolling for other people’s learning? Like they’re some kind of catalysts?

“That is one way of looking at it, and it may be the best understanding of it that you will achieve at this time. Just remember one thing; each soul on earth has chosen to be there. They know, before they depart to earth, what the outline of their life will be like. They do not see each day of their future like it was a scripted movie, but they do know of the most impacting events that will come to them, and they chose to go and live that life. They sometimes choose to do so for their own growth, and sometimes only for the benefit of others. It is actually an unbelievably beautiful moment when a soul is about to embark on an altruistic life that is set to benefit only others.”

Wait a minute, so you’re saying that a kid that is going to die at a young age, like in a car crash, or from cancer… they already know it ahead of time? I mean, before they’re even born here?

“Yes, they are aware of the largest events that will occur in their earthbound lives. They choose to live that particular life for both the known and unknown benefits. I know it is hard to understand from your perspective, and I further speculate that you are questioning why the Pure Love allows this. My only answer goes back to the very complex tapestry of the existence of everything. I can assure you that it made perfect sense to you when you were a soul, and it will again someday too.”

Is everything predestined then? All of our futures are just various lessons to be checked-off in some cosmic book?

“No, that is not an accurate analogy. Humans have so much free will; millions of decisions face them every year of their lives. Those decisions shape their journey in myriad ways, yet they do not preclude the largest events. There are some milestones that cannot be avoided. Yet, your lives are like a maze in certain aspects; the entrance, a few turns, and the ‘exit’ are certainties, but the rest is free-form and plastic.”

This is a lot to take in and absorb, but the way you and I met, that was part of the ‘free-form’, right?

“Yes, your encounter with me and the two others, at the way-station, was indeed an unexpected event. I must be honest with you and say that I still am unsure how it was possible. It has not ever happened before, and never since then either. I have asked my own guide, but I was given no direct answer. There are small mysteries to yet be revealed, even on my side.”

What about those ‘exits’ anyway, I mean does it really matter how someone dies here? My own mother used to tell me that people who committed suicide wouldn’t go to heaven. Now, before you start in on me, I know that ‘heaven’ isn’t a true description of the afterlife you’ve told me about, but I’m using it in context and conversationally.

“You do amuse me Thomas, thank you for that, I truly mean it. In answer to the question, no, it does not matter how an earthbound soul’s life ends, either accidentally, naturally, nefariously or at their own hands, all souls come home to the same place. Legends and lore are usually based in the morals of the society they originated in, to teach something to the people. Such as, suicide is wrong, or usually a poor choice made during an unstable state of mind. They also cause a great deal of emotional suffering amongst those left behind by the departing soul. Therefore societies have created moral and legal proclamations against not only suicide, but murder, assisted suicide, and euthanasia. In the afterlife all souls are welcomed home by those familiar and loved.”

Conversations with Omen II

“You sound very upset by this interaction you had.”

Yeah, well the guy just butts-in with his ‘If I’d have been there here’s what I would have done…’ and it was so condescending and kind of embarrassing too. It’s so easy to be the after-the-fact guy and announce how you would have handled some situation. He wasn’t the one called in by the executives to give them an overview, and he wasn’t the one who had to answer all of their questions either.

“Did it make you feel like you had failed in some way?”

No, not really… I did a pretty complete presentation of our issues, and I’m sure that the management understood everything I outlined. They followed up with some pretty tough questions that Stan ended up hearing about, and that’s when he started preaching about how differently he would have handled it. Of course it was all presented to me as if he was trying to help me out with his vast experience. He just burns me up sometimes.

“Perhaps you are not seeing this interaction for what it truly was. There are many facets to each gem, and this encounter is no different. You are upset because of the perspective you have chosen to view this from, not allowing yourself to imagine that there are other possibilities.”

Like what? I can’t just think that Stan is an asshat and I don’t have to listen to asshats?

“That is not at all what I am attempting to relay to you. In this case, as in many other cases, the person offering the ‘advice’ is doing more than just trying to best you at some game. The person is usually inflating their own ego, so to speak. It is all ego-based braggadocio disguised as some kind of help to you. Does he think you will encounter the exact same situation in the near-future? No, he is putting on an ego-show for you and anyone else listening. It is what someone once called ‘mental masturbation’ in a public place.”

So he’s just performing for the crowd huh? I can see that now, I knew he wasn’t really helping me at all. It’s not like I don’t know the difference, I’ve had people give me constructive criticism before, and it feels completely different.

“Yes, of course it does because ‘help’ meant to aid you. Good critique is offered in private, as to not risk embarrassing the one you are intending to help. It usually consists of some points of critique followed closely by advice that can make a difference in the future. Also, it is effective to point out what the person has done correctly as well, and emphasize their strengths for support. Criticism is best received with a bit of sweetener to make it digestible. If the receiver feels attacked, their defenses naturally come in to play and nothing is accomplished.”

So it’s possible to help someone out after something like my presentation, without making them feel like you’re saying that you’d have done it all better?

“Very much so. When the ego is put aside, and your heart tells you that you truly are trying to assist someone, the entire experience feels different to both parties. The receiver of the offered knowledge can also tell that it is being offered from a genuine place. In this case, your associate was only trying to reassure himself, and others, that he might have done a better job if it. My guess is that no one, not even himself, truly believed any part of what he said to you. People such as that are very transparent to those who understand the true nature of helping a colleague.”

If I look at it how you laid it out I can see that Stan is just as insecure as anyone else might be. Seeing it that way, it’s hard to be mad at him – I kind of want to assure him that when it’s his turn to do a presentation, he’ll be fine.

“That is a fine thought for you to have. Perspective and knowledge can give you a different place from which to view others from. Once you can understand their motives and objectives, it makes it easier to check your own ego, and respond in a more measured way.”

So, it’s almost like getting a peek at what another’s soul journey is about, in a way. The things that people do or say can reveal the parts of themselves that they are either working on, or need to be.

“That is a very difficult statement for me to simply agree with, Thomas. Perhaps it is best to concentrate on your own journey, and not attempt to decipher another’s. In that way you can remain on your own path and not be side tracked by what another soul may or may not need be doing.”

Ahh, so if I’m trying to figure out what someone else needs to work on, I’m just distracting myself from my own learning?

“Yes, something like that, but there is a bit more to it. I will tell you that there are some earthbound souls who are extremely good at figuring out what you are here for, but that knowledge is seldom used for positive interaction. It is true that some of those individuals can become teachers or gurus of some manner, but more often the knowledge is used in ways that diminish others.”

You mean like con-men or other grifter type criminals? They figure out your vulnerabilities and then pretend to supply you with whatever you most need?

“That example will suffice, but just know that there are myriad ways the same knowledge can be used for corruption. I do not mean to imply that there always like that, in fact there are a rare few who possess such insight, and choose to never reveal what they know.”

So, there’s some people who can figure out other’s deepest needs and then choose to do nothing with that information?

“Yes Thomas, there are some like that. Old souls, quite evolved in their own journeys typically. They listen and observe carefully without judgment, in doing so they can learn much about someone in a very short time. They notice how other’s comport themselves, and the manners in which they deal with others around them. Yet, even with that knowledge, they simply choose to better themselves and not use it against those they have observed.”

That does sound pretty evolved actually, I’m not sure I know anyone like that myself. I guess if I did, I wouldn’t know it anyway from how you tell it.

Conversations with Omen

“So, you felt the need, on your own to moderate your time spent playing those games?”

Yeah, I was spending hours and hours playing them, neglecting a lot of other things I should have been doing. Even some of my relationships suffered because of it. I found myself choosing to stay home, and not accepting invitations to go out with people. I’d even feign mild ailments to make my staying home seem more plausible.

“It is very admirable that you recognized the addiction and did something about it. Have you thought about what the attraction, or pay-off was? What it was that you were ‘getting’ out of the gaming that was more satisfying than being with your long-time friends?”

Well, yeah, I guess so. I think I liked being in control of some entire situation, even if it was a fictional world. I liked getting so skilled at it that I was becoming admired by others who also played. I mean, there was also some comradery to it, I played with lots of other folks from all over the world. That was the social part of it, and probably made it easier for me to not see my friends much.

“You don’t see another possible component of the addiction?”

I was having a lot of fun too; I suppose enjoyment is a motivator of some kind.

“Think about accomplishment. Does that factor in to it in any way for you?”

I suppose so, I was conquering armies and monsters, stealing treasure and making the world a better place. That was usually kind of awesome!

“Perhaps, but, what was really being accomplished? Were actual monsters slain? Were actual treasures added to your bank account? Is the world truly a better place now?”

Well, it’s a game Omen, it’s not real life. Its fictional fun, it used to relax me and relieve the stress of my day in a creative kind of way.

“I did not mean to insult you, my friend. I just offer a different perspective to you, one that you may consider and accept or reject as you see fit. What I am speaking of is false-accomplishment – the feeling that you have truly done something admirable and satisfying, but yet you have not. The monsters are cartoons, as are the treasures and the lands to be conquered. When your evening is done, you might feel as if you have done the work of goodness, but it truly was all a fiction. The human brain will produce the same satisfying neuro-chemicals that make you feel bliss, but it is not over anything tangible.”

The feelings are real, and the interactions with other people are real too!

“Yes, I do not disagree with either thing you have pointed out. But, those are not usually what you felt pride over, are they? I do not recall you telling me that you had especially satisfying interactions with other players. The stories you told were of your finishing a long and complicated quest of some kind. You spoke of receiving rare rewards for your character, such as weapons or special powers. None of which are real. You cannot remove that sword from the game and wield it in your true-life can you?”

No, of course not. I never claimed that I couldn’t distinguish the game from real-life. I was perfectly aware that none of the rewards were actual objects, and the gold I earned was also fictional. But, it still felt good to get those things… I think I am starting to see what you’re saying now. I can know that the rewards or accomplishments are fictions, but I still felt good about them. Like I was mixing fiction with factual life. Feeling like I’d done something heroic and special, but I’d really just played a game well.

“Yes, the fictional accomplishments caused very real internal reactions – both physical and emotional as well. That kind of easy emotional gratification can become addicting rather quickly – becoming a substitute for actual accomplishment or interactions. I will go further and say that like many other addictions, it ultimately leaves you feeling empty and longing for more of the same feeling.”

So, the gaming becomes a pacifier for the mind? Like alcohol or drugs do? But, I have never heard of gaming ruining someone’s life like drug addictions usually do.

“More than a pacifier, so much more than that; it becomes a false sense of your own self. I agree that there is little academic evidence dealing with gaming causing the downfall of people’s lives, but it remains true that it can happen. Relationships begin to wither and fail, sometimes a person’s physical condition will also begin to wither way. Dietary habits may suffer, along with hygiene and sanitary concerns.”

“Real relationships are often unpredictable and difficult. We do not exercise the same level of control over the obstacles in our true-lives as you felt while in your game world. Many times one is completely out of control of the circumstances in their life for a period, and that is an uncomfortable condition. Getting through a period like that in a positive way is a true accomplishment. Genuinely satisfying accomplishments are fewer and further between for most people living true-lives. Many times they are much more subtle too. But, they are real – and the real feelings tend to last much much longer than the false ones do.”

I can see that, and at some level I must have felt it all along. Even if I couldn’t have put it into words, something in me was nagging at my thoughts the entire time I was so into the gaming. Something was trying to tell me to either stop, or cut way back on it. Somehow I knew I needed to be back with real people, doing actual social things with them. I think I was starting to feel isolated and lonely too – even though I was interacting with other people in the game, it was pretty two dimensional.

“Indeed, false accomplishments and vague relationships cannot lead to genuine feelings of self-love and satisfaction. Only through actual relationships can we truly see ourselves and grow into better souls. In games we can accept challenges, go on conquests or attempt to slay monsters – if we do not best the challenge we have the option of restarting it again. True life is not like that for most people, we often only have one chance to accomplish a goal, and if we fall short of it, we have real consequences to accept.”

Sure, real feelings get hurt, either our own or someone else’s. I get that, but I also know that games are fun, and people will always like them. Heck, I still like them too, I just play a lot less than before. I know that not everyone gets addicted to them either, so what is it that makes the difference?

“A variety of reasons cause different individuals to react in their own ways to the exact same stimulus, or game, in this case. There are those that are very grounded in the present, and remain keenly aware of both what the game provides, and what their true life provides. Others may benefit from the diversion of the game, yet not be seeking a complete escape from their true lives. And, of course, we should not forget those who do not feel the draw of games such as those we are speaking of. Those individuals who lead lives of intimacy, emotion and personal interactions with others. They find all the treasures they ever need in the relationships they have with their fellow human beings.”



I am offended by you!
by what you said
by what you didn’t say
by what you did
by what you didn’t do

You ruined my day
when you looked that way
I heard you sigh
Saw something in your eye
I. Know. What. You’re. Thinking!

Is this what our future will be?
I don’t get you, & you hate me
Fighting like we have rabies
in a state of being perpetual babies
Staying behind our protective fence
We’ve let go of our common sense

Each of my opinions you don’t share
Makes you want to send me
to the electric chair
Yet about all humanity
you pretend to care

A different belief isn’t spewing hate
A dialog would help us communicate
Share ideas, understand
Stop your pronouncements
Gestures so grand

When did we decide that we
can never be offended?