Transmigration of Souls

This is a short extract from The Piper 3. I am just putting it out there as it has spent too much time in darkness.

Although she barely knew him, Laura felt that Mr. Dale was a man to be trusted. He had a quality that encouraged others to reach out towards him, a quality that gave him a significant importance amongst those who found themselves sheltering through the terrible storms in this ancient fortress.  

Laura sat and composed herself. She didn’t know what she was about to say or if it was going to be of any use. What she did know was that she had to say something to somebody and Mr. Dale was there for her.

“I think that my son has disappeared.”

“What? Has he left the castle?”

“Not exactly.”

Laura told Mr. Dale about what had happened that evening. She fought against the tears that wanted to show their frustration and anger. When she had finished, she fell silent looking at her hands.

“So you’re telling me that the person in your son’s room is no longer your son?” 

Laura nodded painfully whilst Mr. Dale sat contemplatively. Eventually, he spoke.

“Never was there a time when I did not exist, nor you, nor all these kings; nor in the future shall any of us cease to be. As the embodied soul continuously passes, in this body, from boyhood to youth to old age, the soul similarly passes into another body at death. A sober person is not bewildered by such a change”.

His voice had changed in tone. If Laura had not been sitting there in front of him, she would have presumed it to be another man; somebody who was not, and she thought about this, was not there. The words he spoke were at once English and yet were not. It had been the same with Michael when the archangel spoke through him. The air between them had thinned and a wave of nausea swept over her.

“Those words are from the Hindu book, the Bhagavad Gita. It was something that I had known about a long time before I went to India but it was not until I was there that I realised the full significance of the text. 

You are aware that Hindus believe the soul to be indestructible, that it is reborn even after death, and that it will find a place in another being until that body too dies. The soul, you see, goes on and on. It is the force behind creation, behind what we think of as the physical universe. Yet, it is more.

The ancient Greeks also understood this. They called it the transmigration of souls. When a soul transmigrated after death it would drink from the river Lethe and lose all its memories of their past life. It would spend time in the underworld and all that they had from their previous lives would simply burn away. Eventually, they would re-emerge into a new form.

Yet the soul is eternal, having no beginning and no end and every now and then, tiny shards of a previous existence would shine in through into the present life.

Some recall in dreams fragments of faces, yet they awake and forget. For others, it is the inexplicable feeling that they have been to a place before, a place they have never even seen in a photograph. It may be that this is what happens to our souls, the immutable essence of our beings: no beginning and no end.” 

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