In the blog article entitled Paying the Price I discussed my disgust with people who think they are exempt from paying for the services of spiritual workers. I tell my friends that the few people who never charged me were the gypsy women of Boston’s South End. When their fortune telling shops still existed in the 1980’s and 1990’s, they went inside and closed their curtains when they saw me coming down the street. That has happened to me in several cities. On the other hand, there have been real spiritual workers who have seen me coming and came up to tell me all about the life I’ve led and where they see me going. That has been on our first meeting. Again, more than one person has done this.
I never expected the incredible response I received for that article. Both spiritual workers and regular folks reached out. Everyone had only positive things to say. That includes those who said I sound frustrated with people who refuse to pay for services rendered.
That is true. That is also why I rarely work for the public anymore.
I am reminded of what my Mother used to say when she would come home from a winning day at the race track.
You have to pay to play.
On to this week’s article.
One of the miracles of the last two weeks is that I’ve run into my friend and neighbor the Rabbi more often than usual. He is attempting to teach his Great Dane mix puppy how to work as his service dog. The puppy’s shoulder reaches my waist. I am entirely enamored by this sweet creature. He stole my heart the first time we met with his charming curiosity.
This morning the Rabbi told me how difficult it is to try to get his puppy out the door of their apartment for his walks. It’s easy enough for him to return inside, but it seemed to the Rabbi that there was something at the door which made the puppy not want to go outside.
I told the Rabbi I didn’t expect him to believe what I was about to tell him, but I am bold and told him anyway. I suggested he tell the angels guarding inside and outside the door that they were going out before he put on the leash. To step aside as he left with the puppy.
The Rabbi believed me. He told me there is a part of Judaism that believes there are even angels standing over every blade of grass saying “Grow! Grow!” I told him that’s pretty close to the truth.
There are angels beside every tree, bush and plant. There are angels beside each Spring violet, daffodil and forsythia bush. I told him I could see his guardian angel.
For the only time since we met he asked me why I am not Jewish. My ideas frequently are similar to Jewish thought. I reminded the Rabbi of how many Jews fled Iberia for the Netherlands a few hundred years ago. The land of some of my ancestors. Who knows where our ancestors came from when we look all the way back to the Garden?
The other side of that is that clerics and laity of any and all religions and none find me and my mysticism uncomfortable.
Mystics are not cozy.
We were never meant to be.
If you find a warm, fuzzy prophet, he’s not a prophet. He’s a fraud.
We had a gift in America when I was young. We were encouraged to get ahold of every book we could. It wasn’t just my parents, my grandmother the teacher or the teachers in school. Everybody in America pushed their children to read and become better educated. To read as if our lives depended on it. Because they do. Among the many subjects I have read are books on spirituality from across the world. That includes reading books on the early Christian fathers and mothers which were little known at the time. Some of the ideas from that broad spectrum of books are incorporated into my own thoughts and beliefs.
I am, as I like to say, a devout Catholic heretic.
Over the course of my life the ordinary person on the street, including some of those learned clerics and theologians, have told me that I am stark raving mad. Ordinary people do not see angels. Do not have conversations with God or saints. Can not see the spirits of the dead. Do not see angels in the doorway.
I must either be a witch or a madman. Or both.
Only saints can do those things. How do we know those men and women called saints are saints? First of all, they are safely dead and out of the way. They can never bother the world by talking about seeing an angel or having a conversation with God. It’s left to some self-proclaimed expert or another to declare that those people were saints. What they said or wrote about did occur. A very long, safe time ago.
Here, in this moment, in this day and age who tells his neighbor to clear angels out of doorways? Who tell his neighbor to tell the angels that they are to leave the hallway or answer to me?
Life is our opportunity to go far beyond our material lives.
Talk to angels.