“Okay, Grayson. I hear you. Are you sure you want it straight?”
“Absolutely! It’s the only way I fly.”
“Alright, first of all … you’re dead.”
“Thank you, I appreciate the direct answer.”
“In Earth terms.”
“Yes, the ones popular on Earth right now.”
“I’m not following you.”
“I’ve been here a long time. I’ve seen the definition of death evolve over the decades. There was a time when death was defined by the lack of a fog on a mirror placed beneath the nose of a man. That one was so commonly wrong friends of the ‘deceased’ knew to tie a string around the finger of the body before the coffin was lowered into the ground. They would tie the other end of the string around a branch of a nearby tree and attach a bell. In those days, if you woke up in a dark box, it was a good idea to keep pulling on the string until someone heard the bell and dug you up.”
Though I find this to be morbidly humorous, I’m not ready to engage with Seneca yet. I have heard of this burial practice before. Our training for the SEAL’s team covered many of the world’s practices on death and burial. Some of them are rather shocking. On the flip side, I’ve come across cultures that find the practice of cremation to be barbaric. They think burning a body is disrespectful to the deceased—and to the Creator. I sense Seneca is taking this conversation somewhere important, so I shift my attitude and take interest.
He smiles.“Then there came a time when death was defined as not having a heartbeat. The science of medicine caught up on that one and you now have ventricular fibrillation that can revive sixty to ninety percent of patients from cardiac arrest. You also have perfusion equipment that can take over the functions of the heart—outside of the body—while corrective surgery is performed on the heart inside the body. You must know life-support equipment is now capable of doing most everything it takes to keep a human body alive indefinitely—feeding it, breathing for it, and even running simulated circulation.
“With 3D printers now capable of creating simulated wombs and other organs including the heart, another definition of death has been forced upon men. For now, death is defined by the absence of brain function. Based on what I just told you, do you think the human race might eventually invent a type of technology capable of detecting brain activity on a whole new level?”
“I’m not sure where you are going with all of this, but I’ll play along. Yes, I think man will eventually have the technology to detect brain activity on another level. Even so, what will that prove? There comes a point when a man is declared dead, right? Once all the machines are removed, and the body begins to decay, common sense says it’s over.”
“Man is not dead even when the entire body, including the brain, stops functioning. Life is carried in a man’s soul. The soul does not die. It moves on from the third dimension when the human body can no longer contain it.”
“So, given your explanation, I have a question for you: Was I given a choice, or was this forced upon me?”
“Well, ‘forced’ is a bleak word for describing your destiny. But, yes, you chose this. You could have stayed on Earth if you wanted to. Your soul could have remained in the dead body. But, once you cross dimensions, and can see the bigger picture with heightened senses, it really wouldn’t make sense for you to return to where you were.”
“Make sense? That phrase usually means there are people who do the thing the rest of us describe as ‘not making sense.’ Do some choose to stay behind?”
“Some do. They are often the very tortured souls resisting the transformation because their destiny isn’t as great as yours. They know that they’re headed to the darkness and isolation of Hades. They sometimes roam the Earth for years to avoid their fate. This ultimately worsens their situation. The longer they resist their destination, the greater the punishment when they finally turn themselves in.”
“So, they’re like fugitives from the law?”
“That’s one way to describe them. These souls are restricted to the Fourth Dimension. They can’t travel back and forth and haunt people in the Third Dimension as many of Earth’s horror movies suggest. They can’t be seen in form in the Third Dimension—nor can they transform into another three-dimensional figure.”
“But they can roam around in spirit?”
“And they’re capable of moving tangible objects and interrupting human processes while in spirit mode?”
“With all due respect, that’s considered a haunting where I come from. We just label it a ‘friendly haunting.’ Watching an object being moved by a source you can’t see is unsettling. It happened to me once. I was walking through my mother’s living room and a candle flew off her mantle and barely missed hitting my leg. I still think it was thrown by an invisible force. Do you think the spirit was trying to get my attention for some reason?”
“Perhaps, but it’s unlikely there was any malice involved. We call these beings ‘lost souls.’ They’re trying to avoid facing the outcome of their life decisions. As you can probably imagine, they’re angry about their fate. They occasionally move, touch, and manipulate objects to feel a sense of control. Your guardian angel is always by your side. These angels keep humans from being harmed by dark forces. It’s even possible the candle was intended to hit you but was thwarted by your guardian angel.”
“Can people be possessed by these ‘lost souls’?”
“Yes, they do seek out bodies to possess. Possessing a human body allows them to move around in the human world again. The only way lost souls can enter the body of a person in the Third Dimension is through open invitation.
“Some people agree to host a spirit to gain personal power. The scary part is when a lost soul enters the host’s body, suppresses the original soul, and holds it captive. Both souls are in the body together, but the lost—or evil one—stays in control and the original soul is held prisoner. That evil soul can thrive this way for years, even decades. Sometimes, the evil soul stays put until the hosting body dies.”
“Can humans see these roaming souls—the ones that aren’t possessing bodies?”
“Not any more than they can see demons and angels. All three move around people every day. Combined, there are more angels, demons, and lost souls on Earth than people. But, as they travel in another dimension, they are rarely seen.”
“I had a college buddy who claimed to have a ‘sixth sense.’ He said he could see these beings. He told me that he could also see spirit guides and guardian angels. Is this possible?”
“Yes, some people can see them. It takes tremendous discipline and open-mindedness to reach that level of consciousness. It might fascinate you to know many animals can see them too.”
“Well that explains our dog barking at dark rooms, closed doors, and empty vases. I have to say—being here where I can finally get my questions answered is surreal. I’m going to finally find out who killed Kennedy and JonBenet—and who stole my new Christmas bicycle in fifth grade.”
“Yes, you will. Once the mission is behind you, you will have infinite opportunity to get your answers. By the way, Kenny Spencer stole your bicycle.”
“Seriously? I almost hit the wrong kid for that. I guess it’s a good thing Mom happened by. Ha! This is going to be fun. So, what is this mission? I guess we should get on with it. I assume time is of the essence.”
“Actually, time is not a factor here. We are beyond the restrictions of physics. Time operates on Earth and in other places in the universe, but not here.”
“What does that mean?”
“For the direction of this conversation, it means that time on Earth is ticking away. However, we sit outside of this time-governed planet, and can re-enter Earth at any point—past or present.”
“What about the future?”
“Yes, to a certain point.”
“What does that mean?”
“It means you can see as far ahead as Almighty allows. There are some things he keeps as a mystery to us—like information about himself. His essence exists in the Eleventh and Twelfth Dimensions. As far as we know—no man, saint, or angelic being has ever crossed over to these dimensions. He has never spoken of the Twelfth Dimension. Lucifer likes to theorize the Twelfth Dimension is where evil and good converge and where they exist as one and the same. We may never know.”
“Backing up a bit, you said we crossed into the Fifth Dimension when we came here?”
“Yes, this is the Fifth Dimension. The residents of the Fifth Heaven are referred to as Warriors. You are a Warrior, so this heaven will most likely be your next home. I reside in the Sixth Heaven.
“What’s the difference between my heaven and yours?”
“There are some differences in our receptors and our capabilities to internalize emotions. Warriors are the most self-aware of heaven’s citizens. They know their limits and potential. They charge towards their goals without fear. Failure is not an option for them.
“The Sixth Heaven is home to Strategists like me. They are excellent self-managers and are disciplined and orderly. They have a keen sense of their existence—which gives them the ability to apply logic to irrationality, and order to chaos. Both Warriors and Strategists put objectives in front of people when solving a problem. They represent the other side of the human spirit—the one committed to surviving and thriving.
“The Eighth Heaven is where we find the Idealists—one of the two heavens that put people first. Idealists are excellent social managers. They know how to establish rapport with all people. They motivate others to their top performance in any situation. They are highly creative because their positivity never allows them to quit. If one path closes, they find another one.
“The Ninth Heaven is the Samaritan Heaven. Samaritans are very socially aware and people come first. They can internalize the emotions and needs of others. They have infinite patience with people who are struggling. Their one goal is to help others realize peace and love. When Almighty said, ‘The meek shall inherit the Earth,’ he was referring to the Samaritans. Their love of people places them in the highest human heaven. Only the Saints and Almighty sit higher.”
“What about my dad? Where is he?”
“He resides in the Ninth Heaven; he’s a Samaritan. Did you know this about him?
“Not really, but I might have guessed it from the description you just gave. He was the most giving family man in our town. He was always helping the neighbors—and me. Tell me something, if he is living in a different heaven, will I be able to stay with him?”
“Yes of course, if you like. But you might prefer to live in the Heaven where the people share your approach to problem-solving and existence in general. You will find shared perspective in the Fifth Heaven, not in the Ninth Heaven. If you decide to live here, you can cross to see your father at any time—and vice versa.
“You and I first met in the Fourth Dimension—which is time. The heavens above the Fourth Dimension are not restricted by time. People and spiritual beings can touch in and out of the Third Heaven from anywhere—or any time—in the universe. You saw this when the imaging of your body was visible just minutes before we saw your mother with the flag from your casket. These events took place days apart, but we can touch into them anywhere in time. Your funeral hasn’t happened yet. We touched into the future to see your mother.”
My mind is still reeling from the information Seneca just shared, and he rises from his seat to shut down the 3D images. “This is a good place to stop and introduce you to some people. Are you up for a bit of a journey through the heavens?”
“Will it get me to my father?”
“Yes, it will…Is this your only objective?”
I give him a knowing smile. “Let me change my question—will it get me to the Mission?”
“Ha! I am impressed. How did you pick up on that?”
“I’m a fast learner. My entire life has always been about the next mission. I figured it continues here.”
“Yes, it does. Your observation is accurate. You’re designed to seek challenges. Your entire existence is about the Mission. This never ends for you.”
“You know, hearing that is music to my ears. In Sunday school, I was told that I was going to come here and be fitted with wings. I was also told I would walk on streets of gold—evidently, when I grew tired of flying—and spend eternity singing songs accompanied by a harp. I don’t even like harp music. Having to listen to it for all eternity sounded more like Hell than Heaven to me.”
“Well, welcome to the truth.”
“Why were we told that?”
“I don’t think anyone was trying to mislead you. That part of Heaven does exist—it’s the Seventh Heaven. Some people like it and rarely leave. It’s the level most often used to describe Heaven as a whole—mainly because it safely translates a positive image to all types of people. You, however, are a Warrior. The streets of gold and the harp music would eventually bore you. You are destined for an eternity of missions. It wouldn’t be Paradise for you if it were any other way, now would it?”
“No it wouldn’t. This is starting to sound like something I can get behind.”
“Good. Let’s get you up to speed on what happens next.” Seneca motions for me to follow him through an archway. When I step through, I’m in an area that reminds me of Alaska in the summer. There are mountains and lakes as far as I can see. We are on one of the highest altitudes, and the air is invigorating. In the distance, I see a group of deer drinking from a lake covered with lavender water lilies. Elk nudge each other as they roam through the trees. They stop and look at us but move on as if we are just part of the landscape—evidently an uninteresting part.
“This place is amazing, Seneca. Where are we?”
“This is your next home.”