From “The Confession”

This is the reading I’ll do at my dad’s funeral tomorrow.

Gods live not in the crevices of mortar and stone, nor in the jeweled eyes of a ram but in the hands of men and the hearts of women and in the land of wonder.  Dip your cup in the river and you drink gods.  Breathe the air and gods fly up your nose.  The god in the wind puffs the sail and speeds the traveller home.  Nodding and crowing, the lapwings are gods clinging to sycamore branches.  Daily gods rise in blades of wheat.  Daily they walk cities by the river.  Covered with the blood and mucus of women, gods enter the world and we call them children.

To see the goodness of things, we must see the god in things.  To see the god in things, we must see goodness.  To find god in sorrow, fear and death is to see its usefulness.  To know is to understand.  To praise the gods, we must praise life.  To honor gods we must make of the world something good.  To be gods, we must hold goodness in each pore.  We are filled with light, wholly divine.  The sun rises, an eye of fire, and through its light we come to see the world as gods would have it.

In the land of the sun, in the season of the end, I climb the highest hill.  The moon is a sliver caught in the trees.  Entering night I carry the lamp.  Though no man sees it, I shine my light into darkness.  See how even a single beam cuts through so the path lies clear.  The wolves run frightened.  Still, no great harm comes to a man who walks unafraid to die.

I leave these words to those with ears to hear, eyes to see, hearts to know, hands to do.  I leave these worlds in the world of forms.  I am becoming invisible.

Hail that which brings the trees to flower, the wheat to grow, the lotus to blossom, which bursts from the black bowels of earth singing, I’ve not wasted the gift of your labors.  May we live forever.

Hail lion of heaven, bearer of yesterday and tomorrow, I’ve not been less than what I was.  May we live forever.

Hail white teeth, a biter of heads, devourer of men, I have not killed the cow nor uprooted the wheat, but that I know its spirit feeds mine.  When the time comes, I give up life without regret to feed a spirit greater than mine.  I shall die, a small thing become part of the larger world.  May we live forever.

May the light shine through us and on us and in us.  May we die each night and be born each morning that the wonder of life should not escape us.  May we love and laugh and enter lightly into each other’s hearts.  May we live forever.  May we live forever.

From Awakening Osiris—The Egyptian Book of the Dead, translated by Normandi Ellis

8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. pegoleg
    Oct 18, 2011 @ 10:11:16

    Dear Sandy,
    I’m so sorry for the loss of your dad. I hope you can draw strength and comfort from your family and friends during this difficult time.



  2. strugglingwithbipolar
    Oct 18, 2011 @ 13:41:19

    Sandy Sue – This is both beautiful and comforting. Thank you for sharing.


  3. Kitty
    Oct 18, 2011 @ 13:48:00

    Beaming you Light and Love!


  4. Deb
    Oct 18, 2011 @ 22:06:15

    You will send him off well – with tenderness, respect and love, as every daughter desires. I love you.


  5. Kathryn McCullough
    Oct 19, 2011 @ 01:44:13

    Oh, Sandy, I’ve never read this. Thank you for sharing it. What a powerful post, my friend. Hugs to you–huge hugs,


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