The Ferryman

Some things which are ordinary or forgotten by others have special meaning for me.  On that list is an album by the Alan Parson’s Project called “Pyramid.”  In this entry I will not talk in depth about that, but I think it is important for me to mention that Pyramid is about death.  It is about Ancient Egypt and the power of ancient Egyptian Magic, and it is about mysteries that we may never answer.

One of the characters on the album is the Ferryman.  He appears in the song “You can’t take it with you.”

Years ago, in the early 1990’s, I had the opportunity to study with a Native American Medicine man.  I was part of a group whose membership ebbed and flowed but I kept coming back for a number of “Moons.”

Somewhere towards the end of this sojourn the topic of my sleep problems and strange dreams came up.  And, spoken rather casually as if he were saying “my, isn’t that an interesting bird,” the medicine man explained that I was having these dreams because I was a “ferryman.”  He said I was leaping out of my body, nightly, and helping the dead to “cross over.”

I did not know what to make of this, and I still do not.  Should I be a mortician “in real life”?  What does it mean?  Should I volunteer at a hospice?

In any of a number of ways I have been “tapped into” questions of death and transition for a very long time.  Those issues are front and center in my life as nearly everyone close to me is facing death either directly or indirectly, including not only human family members but elderly pets whose days are obviously numbered.

I keep facing questions, deeper and deeper, more than I face answers.  It all seems quite crazy, the part of me that craves to be “normal” wants to reject it all.  But maybe I cannot really reject it.  Maybe I have reached a point in my life where I must face parts of myself that I have long disowned and rejected.  But, how do I proceed?  Where do I go from here?


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