My Father’s Farewell
By Lillian, Mexico
My father had been brought up as an orthodox Jew, and although he was a very spiritual man, he was wary of the spiritual path I’d chosen for myself. Eckankar seemed foreign and unfamiliar to him.
But as I began to practice the Spiritual Exercises of ECK, my father immediately realized something was different about me. He also noticed that when I returned from an Eckankar seminar I was filled with more light and love.
“Whatever you’re doing,” he said, “it must be good.”
One day, shortly after my return from a seminar, my father asked me, “How are your Masters in Eckankar?”
“They are the best in the universe,” I replied.
“That’s good!” he said. I was happily surprised. I’d expected him to challenge me about my beliefs. Instead, he was pleased with my response.
One Sunday after dining out, I hugged him as we were leaving the restaurant.
Suddenly, I felt a strong bond of love between us. I didn’t realize then that this was a farewell hug.
Later that week, I had trouble sleeping. I tossed and turned for hours in my bed. I felt strange, as if something were about to happen. But I didn’t know what.
Then I got a phone call from my mother, telling me that my father had translated (died). He had gotten up in the middle of the night, feeling unwell. Then he arranged his pillow, lay down on the bed, and peacefully died.
I realized that all my tossing and turning was because, as Soul, I knew my father had passed on. I just hadn’t recognized it consciously.
I decided to do a spiritual exercise. I went into the living room and played a CD of thousands of people singing HU, an ancient love song to God. Then I closed my eyes and went into contemplation.
Suddenly, I heard my father’s voice. He was speaking with Wah Z, the Inner Master.
“I’m not so important,” my father said.
“Yes, you are very important,” Wah Z replied.
“But not so much,” responded my father.
Then I felt the Mahanta nudge me to speak.
“Yes, Daddy, you are very important!” I said.
“You’re here?” he asked, sounding surprised.
I began to say, “Yes, Dad, this is—,” but he interrupted me.
“Eckankar!” he said, as he surrendered himself totally to the Mahanta. There was a noise like the rush of a strong wind, and he was gone.
That night, my son drove me to my parents’ home to be with the rest of our family. I had been tremendously moved by the experience with my father. When we arrived, I still felt the strength and peace of the Mahanta’s presence.
The next morning, as we prepared to go to the funeral, my son called me to the door.
“Mom, come quick!” he shouted. We all ran together to look outside. In the sky above us was a huge rainbow. I could feel the presence of God surrounding us as we stood together in silent amazement.
The rainbow was a divine message that my father was doing fine on the next step of his spiritual journey. As we drove through the city, smaller rainbows appeared throughout the sky, reminding us of God’s love.
After the funeral, I returned to my mother’s home. That night, just as I was about to fall asleep, I felt an invisible hand caress my hair. I knew it was my dad, coming to say a final good-bye.
“I know it’s you,” I said inwardly.
Then I felt the caress on my hair again, along with a warm feeling of love and appreciation.
A few days later, my father had one final surprise for all of us. My parents lived in a fifth-floor apartment, and the foliage of some of the bigger trees in the garden was level with the windows.
As our family sat in the living room, chatting, a beautiful eagle alighted in one of the branches close to the window and stayed there awhile, watching us.
I was amazed! Eagles are rare in Mexico, and I had never seen one in the middle of Mexico City. The eagle looked at each one of us, as if confirming we were all OK. Then it was gone.
The whole experience showed me, once again, the truth of the fundamentals of the ECK teachings: First, that we are Soul, an eternal spark of God. Second, that there is never a moment when we do not have the love and the protection of the Mahanta. And third, that life is all about love.
These three basic truths never cease to be amazing.