From the Mountaintop
Once there was a young man named Maury who lay down upon the ground to sleep. An angel came to awaken him and advised that his life was at an end. “Come with me” said the angel “and I’ll take you to where souls travel when their time on Earth is at an end.”
So Maury got up and followed the angel realizing that he could fly. Oh what a wonderful feeling that was. As they rose up toward the heavens Maury could see the vast expanses of land and water that surrounded the earth below. He could see the fluffy white clouds that drifted across the open sky. And he could also see some dark stormy clouds that covered certain geographical features completely. He knew there were storms brewing in those locales.
His angel guide was taking him on a tour.
“Look,” she stated, pointing at a particular area, “that is where you played as a child.”
“Oh yes, I see,” replied Maury.
“And over there” she continued “is where you first explored your world by seeking adventure.” And Maury nodded.
“And over there,” she went on, “is where you fell asleep.”
“Fell asleep?” Maury repeated.
“Yes,” said the angel, “that is where we lost contact with you.”
“Oh,” he sighed, somewhat puzzled and sad. “But we are in contact now?” he resumed.
“Yes we are” replied the angel, “but that’s because you’ve died.
Now Maury was truly sad. “I’ve died,” he repeated.
“Yes,” she answered, “you have died.”
They stopped for a while on a high mountaintop so that Maury could ponder his situation. The angel began to speak once again.
“It is sad when we die,” she began. “We see all of the things we did and all of the things we missed. We see the whole picture now. When we review our life we can be sad for those missed opportunities. But, we can rejoice for the successes that we won because they lead to the next step.”
“Which is what?” Maury asked.
“Which is Love,” the angel answered. “Above all those dreary clouds you now see before you lies Love and Love is the sunshine of life. Fill yourself with Love whenever you can. Fill your cup often. That is how we get past sad.”
Maury continued to ponder this while the angel went on excitedly, pointing to various areas around their mountain perch, while advising him of how he came to be where he was now.
“You see,” she began again, “when you were young you were sent forward with many gifts that were to be opened, developed and expressed on this earthly plane. Some of these you succeeded in opening, others you did not. Where you were successful, you were greatly rewarded. Where you failed to open, those areas remained dark and dreary, like those storm clouds off in the distance.
“Your life, like the Earth below us on this day, has its areas of brightness and sunshine and other areas where a heavy overcast prevails. Your task, as always, is to expand those bright sunny areas and to open up the dark somber ones to let some light in there. Now these latter ones are the hardest to deal with, of course. They can be filled with pain and anger and all sorts of unpleasantness. But each time you succeed in moving past a blockage, or overcoming a trauma or loss, then a little more sunshine can move on in.”
“I see,” said Maury. “So, why am I so sad right now?”
“Because you can see more clearly those missed opportunities and this causes you grief. Your sadness is more than that however. It is also about ‘loss of face’ in view of what could have been actualized. We are always saddest for those opportunities we missed. And that sadness can spill over into our areas of success and prevent us from enjoying these to the fullest.”
“In other words,” Maury responded, “I can release my sadness if I focus more on my strengths, on where I have succeeded, rather than on what I have missed.”
“Yes, indeed,” the angel shot back. “Your task is not to open every gift that was made available to you, but to fully enjoy those that you did bring to light. For those were the ones that were meant to be opened and shared on this particular flight.”
“By flight, you mean lifetime?” Maury interjected.
“That’s what I mean,” the angel continued. “You did well this time around, but you always stayed focused on what was missed, and that is truly sad. Because what was gained, like the sunshine we can see in those open areas below us, is not enjoyed while one is focused on what is lost or obscured. You must always move toward the light, if that constitutes your purpose, for only in the light can new growth take place. But to get there, you must consciously choose to move out of the shadows.”
“I see,” Maury reflected. “This mountaintop has surely been valuable to me. It has helped in opening me up to the wider landscapes of my own life. Thank You for bringing me here.”
“You are most welcome,” the angel replied.
And with that the angel left and Maury continued to ponder his most recent time on the earth plane. He reviewed every aspect of his life, but this time with a focus on the positive, the successes, the achievements, all those areas where the sun had truly shone for him. The dark areas he reviewed also, but with a different set of eyes. He could see now that, alongside the areas of sunlight, those darker zones were only a part of his experience and not its totality as he often had thought. Further than that, he could also see that those darker areas brought more attention to the brighter ones because of the obvious contrasts. “There would be no mourning from this point on” he thought. He now wanted to celebrate his life, all his achievements, all of his successes, and yes, all of his so-called failures as well. Because the latter, it turns out, taught him as much about success as did the successes themselves. With that thought he felt blessed.