In a few weeks, there is going to be a local Cemetery Walk. This is an event where local actors portray some of the interesting or prominent people who are interred at the graveyard. They give a 5 or 10 minutes talk about their life while alive. It’s a fun event, and really well attended. Nothing like a cemetery in October to get the public’s spook on.
As a goth person, I like the cemetery more than most of those people. Not all, because some of those people are very versed in the history of the cemetery. I enjoy the history of cemeteries also, but my interest mostly lies in the quietness of the setting. A cemetery is an oasis of calm in a world gone mad. I’m lucky enough to live close to a cemetery that is rich in artwork by decades of talented stonecutters.
I bring up the cemetery walk because it ties into what I want to write about. At this time of year, as we inch towards Samhain, there is much talk in the metaphysical community about the veil between the living and the dead thinning. Many look forward to feeling a closer connection between themselves and family members who have passed.
I do not seek that connection. I grew up in a fairly happy family. But towards my teens, there was a palpable shift. I’m not going to get into the details, but I lost the closeness with my immediate family. Then, when both parents had passed, most all the extended family fell away. I often feel that I have no ancestral history. I go to the the cemetery where many of my family members are buried, walk among their tombstones, and feel an emptiness, a palpable disconnect. These are people that passed through my life, but now gone, they leave no emotional hole in me.
Wicca alludes to something called The Summerland, and this is a good overview of it. To be honest, The Summerland is one of the most attractive concepts in Wicca. I think if a Wiccan can have that vision in their minds when close to death, it should be very comforting. Does it exist? I think that in the area of things that can’t be proven, if you think it exists, it does.
It is often written that you meet your deceased loved ones in The Summerland. I don’t get that, based upon the concept that it is a place where the soul rests before being reincarnated in some form. I would hope by this time that my parents and relatives have moved on already, for their sake.
Paganism and Wicca have filled a void left by the disassociation between myself and my family, both living and deceased. The spirituality of the God and Goddess fills my heart with a love that I might be missing. I would hope the love of the God and Goddess would be enough comfort to me in The Summerland.
*A note here. I have a strong love and connection with my wife, my children, and my grandchildren. I’m striving to not carry on the past, and am determined to forge a new paradigm. So I might hope to meet them again someday in the afterlife.
So on Samhain, instead of most family members who have passed, I look to the other side for the collective wisdom of those who have made the transition. Much like learning from those actors about those who were laid to rest in the cemetery, there is a library of knowledge left for us to discover in the otherworld.
And people wonder why I default to goth….
Thanks for reading, and gothic blessings to you!