A Personal Story...
“THANK YOU FOR THE FLOWERS!”
By Robert Egby
“Iro?” said Iacovos quietly. “Iro passed away. Five years ago. She took her own life.” The news was stunning. I felt a heavy sickness swelling inside.
Iro, a slim and attractive copper-tanned Greek Cypriot lady had been my first love in the early 1950s. We were on the island of Cyprus, Aphrodite, the goddess of Love’s special place in the eastern Mediterranean. I was fresh out of the Royal Air Force and creating a career in journalism in the capital Nicosia.
We met, romantically, on a small steamship out of nearby Beirut and got married just as Aphrodite’s island became a war zone -- Greek Cypriots fighting the British colonial administration. Our marriage lasted a brief two years. Iro’s relatives, much involved in the violent struggle against the British, did not approve of her marriage to an Englishman. Our breakup in 1956 was incredibly sad. The island achieved independence in 1960 and I left a year later.
As the years progressed, I always wanted to see my Cyprus love again. Now, a quarter century later, I was back on Cyprus, stunned and deeply hurt.
Iacovos and I were sitting by the pool at Nicosia’s Cleopatra Hotel. “Iro had a relationship with a stockbroker and lost everything. She took an overdose of drugs,” said Iacovos, the publisher of the Cyprus Mail, an old friend of both Iro’s and mine. “She’s buried at the cemetery.”
Next day, I wandered through the old, dusty cemetery, the mass of white headstones basking in the October sunshine. Iro had been buried with her mother and father. As I stood by her grave, I felt a strange energy suddenly envelop me -- an ugly, heavy, negative energy that wanted to pull me down. It wrenched at my body and mind. I felt an acute desire to die. A desire to kill myself.
"It's not you! It's not you!" My spirit healing guide, a little Chinese doctor named Chiang suddenly came through. “She’s here. You’re feeling her pain and suffering. You're feeling the last experiences of her earthly life. She is -- as you say -- earth-bound.”
Earthbound! I had heard of spirits not making the transition to the Other Side. Only a few weeks before my return to Cyprus, our medium at the Vancouver Psychic Society, Patrick Young, had discussed this real problem in detail.
“When people don’t want to die, they feel so attached to the physical world, they refuse to go over. They refuse to look up into the light. They reject all encouragement by spirit guides and loved ones in spirit to look up into the light. They focus on looking down,” said Patrick, “and that keeps them earthbound.”
“The status achieves a nightmare state. An earthbound spirit can see and hear loved ones, friends and colleagues, but unless the loved ones are intuitive or psychic, they fail to make contact. The earth-bound spirit is caught between the two worlds. Frustration escalates and turns to anger. They become intensely cold. That’s why if you have an earthbound spirit around, you’ll notice the cold.”
“Iro didn’t pass over?” I said to Chiang, as I battled the heaviness and a growing nausea.
“No, she didn’t want to die. She enjoyed living, as you know,” said the old Chinese doctor in spirit. “You are here to help her. You recall your medium’s instructions.”
Panic! I tried to think back. Listening to a medium’s word’s in class is one thing, actually doing a spirit rescue is another. “We’ll help you, Bob,” said Chiang reassuringly.
Guided by Chiang, I first offered a prayer to Infinite Intelligence, asking for guidance, strength and protection. Chiang urged me: “No judging, no criticism. That’s earth-ways. Be spiritual and loving.”
Now I addressed Iro. I could feel her incredibly heavy presence, so frustrated, so unhappy. “Dearest Iro, I am here because I love you and there are others in Spirit who love you and want to help. I think I understand your hurts, and I want to tell you that the time has come to look up and go into the light. You will find your mother, Efterpi and your father, and other loved ones waiting to greet you. There will be others there who will help you to understand the situation that occurred here on the Earth Plane. They do not judge you, they only wish help you to understand.”
After several minutes of talking, building her confidence, I felt she was ready to look up into the light. “You have the power to release yourself from this earth by holding up your head and looking into the beautiful light that is above you.” I said slowly. “It is a beautiful, warm and loving light. Look up, dear Iro. Look up, and go towards the light.”
Prompted by Chiang, I repeated these words several times. For some time, I sensed a reluctance to go. She feared the unknown. “Build up her self-confidence and her energy will lighten,” advised Chiang. Some fifteen minutes after I had started -- it seemed like an hour -- I sensed a change in the energy. “She’s coming up,” whispered Chiang, “you can feel it. Feel it and learn, my friend.” The invisible blanket of heaviness, cold and nausea, floated strangely upward. The lifting was powerful, like loving hands and arms pulling her up. Suddenly the cold was gone. The welcoming warmth of the Mediterranean sun enveloped me and Chiang did not have to tell me: Iro had gone over into the Spirit World.
Shaken and exhausted by my sudden introduction into spirit rescue, I wandered slowly around the Greek Cypriot cemetery, and visited several other graves of old friends. Then I went back to Iro’s grave. She was no longer there. The air was clear. At a Cypriot flower shop outside the cemetery, I asked the old lady in charge to create a vase of yellow and white flowers. I placed them on Iro’s grave and said a prayer for her safe transition.
When I returned to Vancouver, British Columbia, three weeks later, the incident involving Iro had subsided, and I really didn’t want to tell people that my ex-wife had taken her own life. I just let it go.
Some weeks later, while sitting in Patrick Young’s development circle, the medium said suddenly: “Bob, may I come to you? There is a slim, dark-tanned lady here, and she has a message for you. It’s very simple and she says you will understand: Her message is: ‘Thank you for the flowers.’” That night I went home elated: (1) Iro was doing well on the Other Side, and (2) I had received another, very meaningful assurance of continuous life on the other side of death..
It was as if a door had suddenly been opened. Over the ensuing weeks and years I became involved in dozens of spirit rescues. Some simple, some complicated. A three-year old boy told his mom “A man sits at the end of my bed and sings me to sleep every night.” While talking to the mother, the man appeared. She identified it as her father, and the boy’s grandfather. He died last year of cancer, she said. He didn’t want to go. He had so many plans.
While her husband and the boy went to visit neighbors, we sat in the basement workshop -- the father loved his basement workshop -- and with the help of Infinite Intelligence and my guides, got the man to see the light and go up. I said everything out loud for the boy’s mother to hear. Afterwards, she exclaimed: “It’s peculiar. The place is now much warmer.”
Earthbound spirits can stay around for years. Time appears to have no meaning. Once, while in Patrick Young’s circle, I felt the close presence of a young woman, almost sitting on my lap. “She says her name is Janet and she was murdered,” I told the group. She gave details, and thought we were still in the 1920s -- sixty years had passed! Again, she went into the light.
While spirit rescue is beautiful, healing and caring work, it does have its hazards. A young family was losing pacifiers at the rate of several a day, and this had been happening for weeks. “The place is haunted,” said the mother. While visiting the house, I spotted a young girl in spirit. Five years old. An interesting, flowery dress, white socks and black shoes. A large sun-hat kept materializing on her head then disappearing. She peeked shyly around the door.
She told me about the illness that had taken her whole family away. They were farmers and lived a short distance up the hill. It was 1919 and the dreaded Spanish flu claiming millions around the world. The little girl said her mother always gave her pacifiers. Working with my guides, I asked her to go into the light, and she did. Twenty-four hours later, realized I had made a mistake.
I should have asked: “Are you by yourself or are there others?”
The next day, the family in the house called me. “There’s trouble. There are spirits all over the place...and they’re angry.” Unable to go because I had pulled a muscle while jogging, I asked a Spiritualist minister living nearby to help out. He did, and called me back: “They were mad with you because you took their daughter away. They are all right now, on the Other Side.” The lesson I learned: always ask questions. Never let anything in Spiritualism become routine.
Two years after the Cyprus incident with Iro, I was sitting alone in a cafe in Seattle, Washington State, when suddenly I felt a presence. Her voice was clear. It was Iro in spirit. Over the next little while she shared a fascinating amount of information of what happens when an earthbound spirit reaches the Other Side.
“When I reached the Other World, I felt bruised and hurt and terribly disoriented. My experiences in your world from the death of my physical body until the time I arrived in the Light created my own personal hell,” she said. “Five years.”
After my initial greeting, the guide who had been with me on Earth, a wonderful, loving entity called Talbot, worked with me and showed how to let the natural healing work. One learns how to radiate love, not for any reason because it’s right or wrong, simply because it’s the natural thing to do. You radiate love not to please anyone, but simply because it puts you into the mainstream of being.”
“Here one sees Earth not through the eyes of ego or possessiveness, but through an understanding of what other Spirits in physical clothing are going through,” she said. “We learn to send them love, unconditional love. We do not judge. That’s a predicament of physical life. I wish I had known such teachings while I was on your side.”
“Spirit rescue, as you call it, is very important,” said Iro. “There are many spirits caught between our two worlds--and they all have the common desire--they weren’t ready to come over. It’s not just suicides, or people suffering fatal catastrophic diseases, but those whose lives are terminated by war, famine, disasters, and such situations.”
“On this side there are special guides, counselors, teachers, doctors, nurses who volunteer to work with spirits who fail to make the transition. Caught between the two worlds, one loses track of time. For instance, I had no idea it was five of your earth years before you helped me. There are many spirits who have been caught between the two worlds for many years. We are still receiving spirits from World War One, the Napoleonic Wars, American Civil War, and even earlier.”
“Urge your people to develop and train spirit rescuers. It is hard work but the insights one gets and the feeling of healing and satisfaction are great, as you well know, Bob.”
Iro works as a counselor helping newly arrived spirits who have been rescued. “Our old friend Iacovos, the newspaper publisher, was here and has gone on. He’s still so busy.” She laughed, and it brought back memories of a time long ago, when we reclined in the shade of the Crusader fortress at Kyrenia, swam and chased baby octopuses in the sparklingly clear Mediterranean, and picked and ate oranges in the garden at Nicosia.
Good memories of times long ago. But the best was that message given in circle: so simple, so meaningful, so welcome. “Thank you for the flowers.”
P.S. This article will be included in my next book. Robert