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What is the spirit?  For me it’s the core of who we are and can be when we take the time to move away from distractions and reach deep for our own truths.  As a friend once said, “Take one step to the left of a moment and life can be vastly different.”

I wear a Celtic bracelet.  It is designed with spirals and endless knots – symbols of eternity, no beginning, no end.  My bracelet reminds me of my belief in the timeless nature of the spirit.  I became convinced of the eternal life of the human spirit many years ago when my being was as close to death as it could be without actually dying.   I had just learned that my daughter was dead, killed by a drunk driver.   I stepped out onto the deck of my country home hoping the noises of nature would diminish the screams in my head.  But no robins sang, and the frogs in the pond were still.  No barks from distant hounds echoed through the early buds of spring.  And then the shouting in my brain ceased.   It was a quiet unlike any I had ever experienced.  A dry, silent breeze stroked my cheeks, evaporating the tears.  Color became as vibrant and loud as if a part of me.  The orange of a dazzling sun peeking through towering pines gelled with purple lilac, sweeping me in.  I was separate from familiar earth, yet more connected than I had ever been.  My senseless black soul mixed with verdant trees and blue sky and tawny brown dirt.  The new forsythia blooms blinded with brilliant yellow.  I became every color, every red flower, every green leaf.  It was in that moment, my person nothing more than an empty shell stripped of all ego, that I was able to recognize the concept of ageless life force.  But it would be many years before I mustered the courage to actually embrace and care for my own soul.  And more time still before I understood my responsibility to share the process through writing.  I have a long way to go, but I’m moving in the right direction.  Our spirits are everlasting and we are the caretakers.   I believe the soul has no beginning or end.   When my body succumbs to the creaks and groans of old age, my spirit will remain as part of the eternal universe, continuing to explore and enrich.  And so in this life I choose to nourish my timeless inner self with love and continued growth.  I am finding peace and wish the same for you.   With each life encounter may you take the time to step to the left of a moment, breathe, and let your loving essence grow and soar to new and wonderful heights.

Carole Marshall, author