We remember the dead on the first of November. All the dead throughout the Millennia regardless of race or creed. Who can even begin to count them? Perhaps they are vaster than our own Universe.
It goes without saying that we particularly remember and pray to the loved ones we have lost. In my clan we recited the names of all the beloved and not so beloved Departed on November the First. We did so in our family chapel on Santol Mansion which seated over a hundred souls.
I still cling to this tradition and so do my children and grandchildren.
This year, two much loved friends died peacefully. One was Charles Fernley Fawcett who breathed his last in London. He was a rare breed of Seigneur. Not a day passes when I am not reminded of darling Charlie. It must be even more vivid for April, his wife and soulmate. Somehow we had always thought that Charlie would live forever.
Merlina was my best and oldest friend. We went back almost to our teens. We shared terrible secrets, joys, many voyages to far and strange lands, shoppings trips to Paris and London, romantic ones in Russia and Central Asia with our respective lovers, and surely much laughter and tears.
When she told me she was dying I wailed" You can't die! You are my dearest friend. Now I will be even more alone for no one else will ever hear my innermost thoughts again."
I could hear her crying at the other end of the telephone line for Merlina divided her time between Hong Kong and Manila. She was one of Asia's foremost geomancers and feng shui.( pronounced foong soy) In the not too distant past we had danced away nights without a care in the world although we both carried heavy responsibilities if not weights on our proverbial backs.
"Oh Maribel, you have your writing. Every single word your characters pronounce are your thoughts and your passions. I will never leave my loved ones I promise you'll see me often in dreams and in visions."
Last month I saw her serenely stretched out in my dream. Her long blue black hair down to her waist. When I awoke I knew that she had died as I gazed at her sleeping form. I did not call her as I was wont to do almost every day.
'Mam Len passed away in tranquility at 8:10 in the morning Manila time," wrote Gemma her faithful secretary.
I had exhausted all my tears during the past months. I realized I was being selfish. Like Charlie whom she knew and admired she hang on to life because of those who loved them. They could not bear the thought of letting them go.
But this realization comes to all of us if we truly love; for we must always set our loved ones who are going on their last journey towards the light - free.
All Saints Day is not only about observing those who have been declared Saints by the Catholic Church. Our planet is full of men, women and children who lead selfless lives, who sacrifice endlessly and without complaining for their families and for their fellow men. These nameless and faceless creatures are Saints. No one deserves to be called a Saint more than they.
Today is All Souls Day. God, the Creator, the Cosmic Forces and the Great Architect of the Universe makes no distinction between human beings of any creed, race, ethnicity, good and bad, and even agnostics and Godless ones. They all possess a soul. That divine spark or shard of the sun is what we commemorate on this day.
No one is insignificant. No one is useless.No one is expendable. All are vital to the scheme of things.
REQUIESCAT IN PACE. REST IN PEACE. R. I. P.