OBITUARY

What follows is my entry in a local Short Story Contest.

It all started when I began reading the obituary page in our daily newspaper.
A sort of gallows humor emerged as I looked at the pictures and read about the dearly departed’s life and times. I noticed, with my eight decades of living, that I was about the same age as many who passed off the mortal coil.

In reading many of the “obits,” I concluded that if I wanted a good obit I’d best write it in advance of my passing. Some of the statements I noted in reading obits started with “died peacefully;” “passed on surrounded by loving family;” “died after a long illness;” “left unexpectedly;” “died after a brief illness,” “passed on peacefully,” etc. Personally, I don’t think I’d be dying peacefully if I were surrounded by family . And preferably not peacefully in any case: to quote Dylan Thomas, “Do not go gentle into that good night/ Rage, rage against the dying of the light” – that’s more my style.

Also, the pictures which accompanied some of the obits sometimes showed the deceased at about age 20: surely not accurate for their look by the time of their death. And the photos showing them having aged: at best, these show the remorselessness of time..

To get to the point, I became certain that it was a big mistake to leave the writing of one’s obit to family.

Over the years I had formed opinions about just what happens after body death, such as going to heaven (or somewhere else 🙂 ); reincarnating; returning to a vast pool of spiritual nothingness from which individual souls or spirits emerge . . . By the time I passed 8 decades, I was pleasantly uncertain as to what, if anything, came after dying. I philosophically settled for the idea that there would be either something or nothing. If there was to be something, I’d find out when the time came.

I had been having a lot of fun and many laughs writing my obituary. When I finished I had a glorious obituary, and one that even gave me the feeling that I’ll be missed.

Perhaps I erred in sending copies of my obit to a few of my old cronies, thinking they’d get quite a kick out of it. Imagine my surprise a few days later, finding my obit featured in our daily newspaper!
I was so taken by the outpourings of friends and relatives arriving on the answering machine and by e-mail that I said to myself, and I quote, “What the hell – I’ll just go ahead and make it true.”

That night, using a method of dying I learned about in the South Seas, where one lies down and wills one’s body to die, I lay down to pursue this method, and after awhile fell into a dreamless sleep.
Unfortunately, to my dismay, I awoke the next morning in excellent health and spirits.

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5 Responses to OBITUARY

  1. sylvain dumas says:

    Cool story!

  2. Argos says:

    Cool indeed, and very honest too, I was chocked, I admit, to read that after so
    much experience with Scientology, and much auditing others and solo,… the opinion formed at this stage of life about ”after death” remains so vague as to settle for a philosophical waiting attitude, but I realized that Scientology is not supposed to
    make anyone a ”faithful believer”, well, quite the opposite, if I take a look at the kind of people still hooked to it…no offense, I am probably one of them, I realize also how lucky I am to have died in my actual life, I was 27, this gave me a complete different perspective about , well, everything, and, as everyone else I have a tendency to evaluate others taking myself as a reference, it is hard to imagine how I would think about death and aftermath without this extraordinary experience, now that I am old!
    It could be that I would settle for
    But when I died, I knew I was dead, I immediately was out of time, and out of this universe, but knowing about it, any question I could formulate came with the exact synchronized answer, about reincarnation, mankind, past future, I was in a state of absolute knowledge, and had to decide to either come back for a purpose or
    stay for ever as Static, well, I decided to be back for the purpose of sharing knowledge
    it is not until, recently, that I fully understand that it was not a mistake, believe me,
    there is a future for mankind, a wonderful future you all invited to participate and enjoy, the smoothness and comfort brought about by this certainty is beyond all expectations, I do know!
    Argos, with the smoothest waves of love…

  3. Argos says:

    Cool indeed, and very honest too, I was chocked, I admit, to read that after so
    much experience with Scientology, and much auditing others and solo,… the opinion formed at this stage of life about ”after death” remains so vague as to settle for a philosophical waiting attitude, but I realized that Scientology is not supposed to
    make anyone a ”faithful believer”, well, quite the opposite, if I take a look at the kind of people still hooked to it…no offense, I am probably one of them, I realize also how lucky I am to have died in my actual life, I was 27, this gave me a complete different perspective about , well, everything, and, as everyone else I have a tendency to evaluate others taking myself as a reference, it is hard to imagine how I would think about death and aftermath without this extraordinary experience, now that I am old!
    It could be that I would settle for I don’t know really, let’s see when it comes!
    But when I died, I knew I was dead, I immediately was out of time, and out of this universe, but knowing about it, any question I could formulate came with the exact synchronized answer, about reincarnation, mankind, past future, I was in a state of absolute knowledge, and had to decide to either come back for a purpose or
    stay for ever as Static, well, I decided to be back for the purpose of sharing knowledge
    it is not until, recently, that I fully understand that it was not a mistake, believe me,
    there is a future for mankind, a wonderful future you all invited to participate and enjoy, the smoothness and comfort brought about by this certainty is beyond all expectations, I do know!
    Argos, with the smoothest waves of love…

  4. Heather R says:

    Great story. You had me going there for a minute. I do hope you are going to continue
    to post on your blog. I really miss it.

  5. Kevin Brice says:

    Phil, it’s a very curious thing that I found your posts on March 7th, your 84th birthday, I presume. My younger brother turned 60 today. It’s also the day after the last day of the battle of the Alamo, which occurred in 1836. It all has special synchronistic significance to me, on top of all the multitudinous synchronicity I’ve already noticed in my life. I have an extreme amount of strange intuitive synchronicity associated with L. Ron Hubbard and many other subjects as well. It’ll take me awhile to explain just the synchronicity I have with Hubbard, which I hope you find of interest. In 1970, as an 18 year old, I picked a book, THE IRON MISTRESS, from my mother’s bookcase and read it. It was about a historical character who died at the battle of the Alamo on the last day of the battle, March 6th. I had the strange intuitive feeling that I was reading about myself. In 1976, attending Marietta College in Ohio, I was on the crew team(rowing). During spring break, we traveled by car to Tampa University and practiced rowing on the Hillsborough River. Late one night, wandering the streets of Tampa, I saw a building labeled as, Church of Scientology, Mission of Tampa. Even though it was about 10 P.M., I opened the door and entered. An older gentleman, sitting in a chair behind a desk, asked if he could help me. I said that I was just curious, that I had never heard of Scientology before. He said that he would get help. He left the room. After waiting for what seemed like a long time, a dark haired, beautiful young woman, named Rowena Koltinick, came into the room, through the same door which the older gentleman had exited. She started telling me all about Dianetics and Scientology. Finally, I asked her who started all this. She showed me a blurb and black and white photograph of a man named L. Ron Hubbard, on the back of a book he had authored. I suggested that maybe that was the man who greeted me when I came in. She said that was impossible, as there wasn’t even a man in the building and that no one had told her that I was there. I was the number 4 rower, port side, in the JV-8 man, heavyweight boat, w/coxswain that year. Curiously, we beat everyone we rowed against that year, even Coast Guard Academy, in the finals of the Dad Vail Regatta, on the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia, by one second. In early October, 1977, I hitchhiked to Amelia, Louisiana and worked as a roustabout for almost three months. On the way there, I stopped in Opelousas and meditated under a tree that had a plaque on it, saying that it was his tree(my character in that book). I wanted to live in the area where that individual had lived as a young man in the early 1800s, to see if it would stimulate my memory of it. It didn’t. I came back to NJ before Christmas. That evening, I went to the small airport, with my father, where his small airplane was tied down. It was cold, about 19 or 20, and windy. He wanted to make sure his plane was tied down securely enough. I had on a light jacket and no gloves. Coming from a warm to cold environment had a strange effect on me. That night in bed, I felt a tingling sensation and I took the opportunity to float out of my physical body. I floated toward a window, intending to pass through the window and travel all over the universe to observe what was happening. But when I got as far as the window, I was instantaneously back in my physical form, unable to float out of it again. In February, 1978, I hitchhiked to Tampa, FL. and started taking courses in Dianetics and Scientology. Since I already knew about reincarnation, I was eager to read, HAVE YOU LIVED BEFORE THIS LIFE?, by L. Ron Hubbard, when I saw the book. Hubbard wrote in the introduction, that they once had a Scientologist, claiming to be that same historical character, written about in The Iron Mistress, whom I felt I had been in a previous lifetime. I was shocked and began to wonder if I had known Hubbard in my previous lifetime. My landlady at that time, Marie Marson was OT 7. Some of us would socialize at her place on Sunday evenings. One evening I pestered her with the question about what special abilities she had, that the rest of us didn’t. At first she resisted giving me an answer, but eventually she relented. She told me that I had been beheaded. Seeing the expression on my face, she said not to worry, that it was a long time ago. I asked her if it was on Atlantis. She said yes. I asked her if it was the evil priests. Again she said yes. The story I extracted from my frizzly red haired, blue eyed, middle aged, overweight landlady was that she had been a beautiful, young Atlantean queen and that I had said that I wanted to marry her. I said it in front of everyone, including the evil priests, who used that as an excuse to kill both of us. Contemplating the incident later, I could even feel a pain on the back of my neck. When she told the story, I realized it was a repetitive pattern, as I already realized that I had a strong connection to the Trojan War, which was fought over a queen. There is a great deal of synchronicity which connects me to Paris, of Trojan War infamy, including my mother’s mother who was named Ida and who sometimes referred to herself as Mount Ida. My repetitive karmic, reincarnational patterns include too many Helens, Delilahs and Cleopatras, etc., in my life, then and now. All these things reminded me of an old science fiction movie I had seen on television, YOU HAVE LIVED BEFORE THIS LIFE. In that movie, an airline pilot has his subconscious mind stimulated by an old lady he observes getting onto the plane. He takes off and puts the plane into a dangerous, steep dive. The co-pilot knocks him out with a flashlight and lands the plane safely. The pilot wakes up in a hospital, claiming to be a WWI fighter pilot. Authorities check out the name he gives them and find out that a pilot by that name died in WWI, when his plane was shot down. The pilot mentions a piece of jewelry that he had given to the old lady, when she had been a young woman, when they agreed to be married, by the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia(remember, I rowed on the Schuylkill River). The old lady still has the piece of jewelry and is finally convinced that the pilot is indeed a reincarnation of her fiancé who died in WWI. I have no reason at this point to believe that I was a fighter pilot in WWI. But I do have plenty of reason to believe that family members, relatives and myself were involved in the early days of flight. For example, my father’s father, who was a carpenter, helped repair a Glenn Curtiss seaplane, that crash landed in the bay by Seaside Park, in 1913. We even had a picture of him and another man standing by the plane. Looking through our aviation books one day, I discovered a picture of Glenn Curtiss, that resembled my older brother. We were encouraged to write to Hubbard. So I wrote him about what my landlady had said. I thought he might find it interesting. But Scientology staff there read it and made a big deal of it. It was really non of their business. I had been glad for that interaction and for the information gained. They should have left it alone. I think it got her in trouble, me too probably. It wasn’t long after that, that the ethics officer Dan Machado said that they couldn’t handle me there any more and that if I wanted to continue Scientology, then I would have to go to Miami Org. I thought highly of staff members there, but it seemed like they didn’t think much of me. Grief stricken, I went to Miami. One other thing, there was a young Cuban girl named Yvonne, who I later also saw in Miami Org and did a touch assist for her sore tooth, who was very attracted to me, even though she was much too young, who seemed like she might have been the reincarnation of the beautiful Mexican senorita that I was married to in that previous lifetime in Texas. In Miami I met Don Pfendler who said I had a ‘black mass'(GPM). Big thrill. Through the mid 1980s, I wrote several letters to Hubbard, to which I received replies, purportedly from him. In one letter, I referred to him as Flash, because he reminded me of Flash Gordon. Later, I found out from a staff member, that Flash actually had been Hubbard’s nickname. Another time, a staff member mentioned a lifetime that Hubbard had lived, in which he had been imprisoned on another planet, from which he escaped in a spaceship. Before Hubbard dropped his body, the MISSION EARTH dekalogy was puplished. I read the books and realized that the character Jettero Heller was patterned after Hubbard himself, having a repetitive pattern of being a fleet officer, whether that be Scientology ships, Navy ships, pirate or privateer ships or space ships. Curiously, embarrassingly too, his characters the Countess Krak and Babe Corleone, seem to be patterned after me, perhaps two characters because Hubbard was familiar with me this lifetime and in my last lifetime. But I still had no idea who I was. Several years ago I started reading the DUNE books by science fiction writer, Frank Herbert. Someone suggested that it was actually a true story. Then I became very interested. In reading all six books of the Dune series, I seemed to be able to identify myself and others with some of the main characters in the Dune story, including myself and L. Ron Hubbard. And, as the entire story encompassed a few thousand years on a time stream, it seemed like the characters in the beginning of the story were reincarnated in the middle of the story and again at the end of the story. One of the characters at the end of the story was a fleet officer, tied up by his enemy and about to be tortured, who mysteriously gained the ability to move faster than the eye can see(remember that Hubbard always believed in the potential to move faster than the eye can see). That character loosens his bonds, kills his captors and runs around the planet, killing more of his enemies, before escaping in a spaceship. That character just happened to have a beautiful, fierce, blond haired, blue eyed daughter who was leader of the Bene Jesserits, though I believe she was incarnate as a particular male, a few thousand years earlier, in the beginning of the story. Frank Herbert and L. Ron Hubbard both dropped their bodies in 1986. Herbert even served as a judge in Scientology’s Writers of the Future contest. Hubbard and Herbert had a lot in common. Hubbard must have realized that Herbert’s science fiction story, that he read or heard about was basically a true story and that he and other people he knew were in the story. So, before he passed away, he wrote his own science fiction story, mirroring Herbert’s 6-book Dune story in certain ways, describing some of the same characters. If the Dune story is true, it suggests that some of us came from the distant future part of a time stream in the distant past. And yes I do feel that I understand ‘time’ travel, parallel universes and what a spiral time stream basically is. A few years ago, a psychic friend suggested that as a British secret agent in my last lifetime, I knew Hubbard and that we were involved in top secrets. She also said that I may have been murdered in 1941. I noticed at the time that I was writing some English words with the British spelling. If I was killed in 1941, its likely that I was killed by my fellow British secret agents over the False Flag operation of the Japanese fleet heading for Pearl Harbour, which both Churchill and Roosevelt knew about, ahead of time. Christopher Creighton wrote about it in his book OP JB(a top secret British operation to extract Martin Bormann from Nazi Germany at the end of WWII, because he knew where the stolen Nazi loot was hidden). A Dutch submarine spotted the Japanese fleet headed for Pearl Harbor and reported it by secret code to the British. British agents sunk the submarine, with all hands lost, by a bomb disguised as a Christmas present. They would have killed anyone else who tried to raise the alarm and stop the attack. As a British agent I would have been desperate to find any American agents, including Hubbard, to let them know what was going on. My impression is that Churchill and Roosevelt, living in fear of and anger toward the Nazis, allowed or caused a lot of people to be harmed or killed, unnecessarily. And by the way, I’m probably the one who gave Hubbard the nickname Flash back then, because in his youthful, red haired exuberance, he reminded me of Flash Gordon, when Flash Gordon was all the rage. This post is rather extreme. My reality may be completely out reality to a lot of people. Be free to remove it, if you feel you should, once you’ve got what you want from it.

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