Tuesday, November 12, 2013

My brother's visions

I wonder if my brother's visions are related to my mother's visions? Is there a genetic link--once again more questions than answers. My brother was a loner with a capital "L". For example, he loved to play chess on a high level, but with a computer. My mother liked to frequently call him from Maine so he had the phone removed. He figured she could reach him at work. He subscribed to the Woody Allen philosophy of being part of a group. Woody said that he wouldn't join any organization that would have him as a member. I tell you this because he would be the least likely individually to attach himself to a belief wider than his outstretched hands. We would talk about God and religion--about being a Baha'i. He wasn't against it and perhaps believed there was some truth to the faith of his mother and brother, but there was no personal connection.Toward the end of his life he began to have visions when he slept. After one vision , he described a scene that reminded me of Baha'u'llah's home in Acca. It was like I was back reliving my two pilgrimages of years ago and visiting Bahji. He said Baha'u'llah was sitting at a desk writing and talking to him in an unknown language. Although he didn't know what the words meant, he still understood clearly what Baha'u'llah was saying. I have no memory of him explaining what the conversation was about. I think I would recall if he did. I always got the feeling that he was holding back for reasons that were private. Maybe he thought I would not understand. He did believe and would tell others that his brother was slow. I was and still am slow in many ways. I certainly could not do what he did like not go to physics class at RIT because it was too early in the morning and then read the text book the night before the final and pass. He became a firm believer in Baha'ullah, but felt no compunction to be part of the Baha'i community. I asked him why he didn't read any Baha'i books and he said if he needed to know anything it would come to him in a dream. I was puzzled and wanted an example. He usually wouldn't share much but explained that he didn't know where he stood in relation to Baha'u'llah. He asked the question and that night he had a dream of Abdu'l-Baha, the son and spiritual heir of Baha'u'llah. Ritchie said he was driving his car and came upon a long procession of cars at an intersection. He was about to break in and go the front when Abdu'l-Baha appeared  standing in the road and said he would have to wait because Baha'u'llah was in the lead car and no one was allowed to go ahead of Him. As I said , being a loner, he rarely shared these visions and had no interest in convincing anyone that they were true. He did tell me toward the end of his life that he knew what his job was going to be in the next world. I guess I'll find out in a few years--maybe its helping out slow brothers. His experience reminded me of a Hadith.  I'm paraphrasing, but it goes something like, "If you take one step toward Him, He will run toward you." . We like to believe that the reaching out is all done by us and maybe sometimes it is, but for some who can't seem to reach out, He runs toward them. I'm relying on old memories recalled by an old brain so take all of that into consideration when you read this. I'm sure I will meet him again and he will correct me in a kind way because he knows I'm slow.

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