Home

 

The Seven Purposes by Margaret Cameron 1867 - 1947

 

VII

 

BEFORE beginning the Gaylord interviews at L—— (April 17th), Mary K. asked me not to tell the family the details of the Farrow episode.

 

"Are you ever going to explain that clearly?" I asked. "Not until you know more about these conditions."

 

That night, for the first time, I saw a photograph of Frederick. During the year of her grief and despair Mrs. Gaylord had been unable to bear the added poignancy of a portrait's suggestion, and only when I arrived, to manifest his actual presence in the family circle, was the hidden photograph—a singularly lifelike and virile reproduction—brought to light.

 

"Hooray!" he began, after the customary signature. "Here we are again, all of us together at last! Dad! (O)" It will be remembered that this was the first time that either his father or his younger sister, Lois, had witnessed these manifestations. "You have been the one I wanted most, after Mother.


 

214

THE SEVEN PURPOSES

 

The girls I knew I could get sometime, for this is the future for everybody with purpose, and I knew they'd come to know me again soon. But you and Mother dearest I had to have (O) right now. You both need this knowledge and intercourse as much as I do. The fuller development that comes there with age and experience, and here—where there is no age except experience, makes me nearer to you and Mother in feeling and outlook than I am to the girls and Dick. Not that I am not one with all of you. But being here has showed me the reasons for the things—protective, overseeing, far-seeing things—that you stand for, and have learned there through your experience in that preliminary life. So we are a lot nearer of an age than we used to be. Now we are off together again, and there is no reason, unless somebody backslides, why we can't keep step through the countless aeons of eternity…. Mother dearest, this time I sure am in. Thank you for putting me on the mantel. I like it. Coming home is lots happier business now. It used to make me sorry to see you all so sad. But this is bully!… Dad, look happy for the boy! He's here for keeps now."

 

Mr. Gaylord had generally spoken of Frederick, during his life here, as "the Boy." I had never heard him use any other name.


 

215

THE SEVEN PURPOSES

 

"Can you give your father the proof of your presence that you give me?" his mother asked. "Not only by writing, but by the feeling in his heart?"

 

"I will in time. Remember, he hasn't yet grown used to this communion. It hits everybody hard, at first, and this fluency is inconceivable to any one who has not seen and felt it at first hand. Give us time to get used to it, and Dad will be as fully in touch with me and my life as he ever was when I lived there. The shock and grief of my supposed departure are taking force from him still, but he'll see, just as you have, that I am the better and bigger for this one great experience, and that I never was so deeply and truly a part of his life…. Come on, now everybody talk! I sure do preach, but you called the turn the other day, Mother dearest. It's my job to get this across, first to you who are my own, and through you to every one you can reach. It's all our jobs."

 

Both Mrs. Gaylord and Lois had had some success in establishing communication with the next plane, through the pencil—obtaining detached words, and some names. And the former now asked: "Where were you Sunday? I tried to get you."

 

"I had a big job, attacking a pro-German


 

216

THE SEVEN PURPOSES

 

newspaper editor in South Africa. He didn't give in, either, but we'll get him yet. He doesn't fight openly. He poses as a Pharisee, but he's really pro-German, and thanks God he is like other Germans."

 

Lois asked whether there are any pro-Germans where he is, and he replied that disintegrating force is "pro- anything that destroys."

 

During his last illness, one of his diversions had been to plan with his father a long journey they were to take together when he should be convalescent. Now, after a pause, he wrote slowly and distinctly, as if to emphasize the deliberation of his intention:

 

"Dad, do you remember that trip we were going to take? You take it with Mother some day, and I'll go with you, and we'll do all the things we planned. And I can tell you, if you will just let me in and listen, all the things you want to hear. We don't need a messenger, you and I, but as long as I can't get to you any other way, I'll use one. I can help you actually—physically, mentally, spiritually, materially—as for so many years you helped me. It was due to you and Mother that I got such a good start here. Now I am here, it is for all of us still, as it always was. But it's my turn to lift a little. You carried me for


 

217

THE SEVEN PURPOSES

 

years. Let me come in again now, as a real, existing, active, growing force—your son, sir, wanting to be nearer and more intimately yours than ever. You go on and take our trip, and I promise I'll go with you. FREDERICK."

 

A little later, he said: "I wish there could be any way of showing you visibly the radiant force I am, now that we are all united. You have to be translated to this plane before you can understand what it means to be brought back into the family circle. Not all families, but ours. We are all of kindred purposes, and there's no separating us."

 

"I wish you'd do some of your 'stunts' for Father," Lois suggested.

 

"All right. If you want stunts, here is my best one." This was written briskly, upside down and backward from my position. "Dad, this is the way—I wrote the letter to you and the girls. Here's another, with my love and greeting. I said I'd do this with trimmings. This is the beginning."

 

We gave him fresh paper, and he wrote rapidly, in winding circles, starting at the edge of the table and finishing at the center: "Now I'll do it this way, all around the family circle. All of you in, and I am not left out." Diagonally across the whole in bold script,

"FREDERICK."

 

In moving the paper again, it was torn a


 

218

THE SEVEN PURPOSES

 

little. Mr. Gaylord made some suggestion as to the way it should be handled, and Lois humorously complained that he was "always interfering with other people's purposes." Beginning at the upper right-hand corner of the table, Frederick wrote along the edges, and then in circles toward the center, as indicated in the diagram:

 

[missing illustration]

 

"Don't you mind, Dad. Let them laugh. You and I will be laughing at them presently, from all four points of the compass." Again his name was signed diagonally across the whole.

 

"I always did like circuses, and I can be a four-ringed one now, all by myself, if I have a sympathetic audience," was his next achievement,


 

219

THE SEVEN PURPOSES

 

done once more in circles from edges to center, but this time his name was signed in the center, in small script, surrounded by a flourish.

 

When again a clear surface offered, he drew a large circle around the edge of the table—the symbolism of which, curiously, occurred to none of us until the next day—and then ran to the center, to circle toward the edge: "All of us together again, and all being happy in the consciousness that this is real and eternal union, and that from now on we are going to keep our family circle intact."

 

Some one suggested that unquestionably he was keeping his promise to "do it with trimmings," and in an intricate pattern, impossible to describe clearly, he replied: "Sure! I'm doing all the trimmings I can think of, and after a minute or two I'll think of more."

 

By this time the astonishment and curiosity aroused by these performances had perceptibly lowered the emotional pressure, and the interview again proceeded more normally.

 

Not unnaturally, in this first family reunion Frederick's messages were chiefly personal. Frequently, in pauses, he made enthusiastic little circles, as has been his custom from the first, and I asked him whether it was the circle of infinity, all-inclusive.


 

220

THE SEVEN PURPOSES

 

"Yes, partly. Put out all disturbing factors and all forces of disintegration, add more to eternity and infinity—and that is the circle."

 

"Good night," he said, a little later. "I'll stay here to-night and as long as Margaret stays. You'll talk often, won't you?"

 

The next night, he began with a suggestion that the rest do the talking, adding: "I'll listen and answer questions." After some discussion of purpose, in its personal application, and inquiries concerning other members of the family on his plane, Mr. Wylie asked whether his grandfather could talk to him in this way.

 

"I can get him, I think, by to-morrow," Frederick replied. "He's sheltering a lot of poor, undeveloped wretches who have come out of conditions not making for fitness or growth. He teaches, and urges, and offers them opportunity, and is too busy and helpful to come away often."

 

After this had been written, I was told that this man, during his earthly life, had devoted time and money to providing opportunity for others; never offering charity, but building roads that the unemployed might have work, exchanging some commodity needed by a poor man for some other of which he had enough and to spare, and always encouraging his less


 

221

THE SEVEN PURPOSES

 

fortunate fellows to retain and develop their self-respect.

 

Of another on his plane, now a healer, Frederick said: "I haven't seen him. Every healing force here, as with you, is occupied with war-stricken forces. They come so dazed, and sometimes terrified—and almost always startled, if they come from battle. And all our healing forces are required every minute."

 

This reminded Mrs. Gaylord of an experience of her own, a few days before, when her pencil had written detached words, suggestive of battle. "Lost… many lost… another dead… shot…" etc. She asked whether this came from a friend, and was answered in the negative. To her inquiry, "Did you live here?" the reply was: "Near." She asked for the name, and it was written clearly, "K—— ." A few days later the name of Lieutenant K——, of a neighboring city, headed the American casualty list.

 

"K—— caught his one chance before his consciousness dimmed," Frederick commented. "He is now too bewildered to talk. Just after what people who don't know call death, there is a Moment of singular clarity and vision. He happened to catch you in that moment."

 

We fell to wondering, then, whether these messages could be flashed to us from a distance


 

222

THE SEVEN PURPOSES

 

or whether the person communicating must be present, and I asked Frederick whether he could send me a message from a distance.

 

"No, but we travel in a flash."

 

We who had had some experience in receiving these communication's spoke of the fear we all had lest we might unconsciously influence the pencil, at times, to write our own imaginings.

 

"You people have such a fear of imagining things that you shut out a lot we try to tell you," Frederick interpolated. "We can't get through doubt, bitterness, resentment, or selfish grief. Fear can be conquered, but doubt shuts the door in our faces. Please relax a little of this too rigid vigilance, and at least entertain the idea we are trying to put over."

 

"Do I shut things out by too much vigilance?" I asked.

 

"You bet you do! But you do it for the best of reasons. You can't take chances of giving the wrong message."

 

To a question about the desire of others on his plane to communicate with those here, he replied: "They are all eager to get in touch, just now. Every one of us here is pulling every thread of connection he can there, because this is a critical time and because, never before in the world's history have so many people been reaching out for the thing that


 

223

THE SEVEN PURPOSES

 

means co-operation and progress, in the biggest and broadest sense, if we can only reach them and convince them that we are all working together, and that we here can help if they will let us."

 

Mr. Wylie spoke of some one whose "makeup," he thought, might enable him to receive these communications.

 

"Make-up has a lot to do with it," Frederick returned, "but the peculiar quality of following accurately a thought put forth by a force so subtle that science has failed to detect it is a thing that none of you recognize until it has demonstrated itself."

 

Some one asked about a prominent politician, whom Frederick had known well in this life, and he replied: "—— is working his way back to a place in the forces of Production. He had a great opportunity, and used it for personal ends, and now he is learning how to use it for Progress. He is not destructive, nor even deterrent. He is a fine force, delayed a little."

 

"Have you ever seen my mother and father?" Mr. Gaylord asked, thereby eliciting the most rapidly written communication— with the possible exception of one coming the next night—that I have ever taken, the force moving the pencil being so strongly applied, at moments,


 

224

THE SEVEN PURPOSES

 

that the instrument was almost pulled out of my fingers.

 

It should be explained that in this appeal to his father Frederick was addressing neither reluctance nor doubt, but a certain mental tensity, resulting from deep emotion, deeply repressed.

 

"Yes, I had Grandmother at Mrs. Z——'s one day," he began. "She is very anxious to talk to you, but she has gone on to a life, or a plane, beyond the one I am on, and I can't always reach her. I hope to get her some time before Margaret goes home…. She never wholly left you, any more than I have. She tried for years to tell you she was there, and she wants to come back as soon as possible and tell you herself that there is no death, no separation, no cause for pain, or grief, or fear, or sadness of parting, except as it is made in the hearts of those who do not know the truth.

 

"We are nearer to you than you are to each other, Dad, and we can prove it, if you will let go of yourselves and take hold of us. We want to come to you. We do come to you. We try and try to tell you that there is nothing to grieve about, nothing to dread. Only love, and hope, and growth, and beauty of completer union. But we can't do it alone.


 

225

THE SEVEN PURPOSES

 

We must have a free heart, a free mind, a free hope to come into. Give us that, and we will show you that we are more truly your own—not your own flesh and blood, but your own purpose and force, which was one in the beginning, and will inevitably be one in the end. We want to make it one now. Don't you, Dad? Won't you try to let the bars down and take us in? We'll come, and we'll all be happier than you've ever been in all your life yet, because the Eternal Purpose is Unity, and we can begin it right here and now, if you there will join us and be part with us, as we with you, of the glorious and happy and (O) irresistible movement toward the great end—which, after all, is not an end, but an eternal and infinite growth toward bigger things.

 

"It is a big gospel we are giving you, sir; a man's gospel; a gospel of hope and beauty and construction. And I am asking you to let me come in again to your every-day life, to let the dread and misgiving and unhappiness go, to think of us here—all of us who are yours—as still yours, still with you, still loving and working and hoping with you and for you; and if you can do that, I promise you we shall all be happier than any of us have ever been before.

 

You see, sir, we are all of the forces of


 

226

THE SEVEN PURPOSES

 

Progress. We are all for Light, and Building, and Justice, and Truth, and when one of us holds back we are all held back. This is the first time it has been possible to tell you all this. This is the first time we have been able to reach you freely, in a way you could not mistake. But the people who have preached the gospel of happiness as a curative force have not been entirely wrong. They have not been wholly right. But the forces here cannot possibly affect a tense and resisting mind as they can a relaxed and receptive one. And the forces here are potent and eager and ready. You know that must be true, because I am one of them, and the only change in me absolutely the only one, Dad—is that I have left the limitations of the flesh behind and grown in perception and knowledge. I am the same Boy,1 plus the better things, and minus the limitations.

 

"Grandmother is the same, too—plus. She is sweeter, finer, broader, more loving, than when you knew her. Just as she was, but expanded, irradiated, deepened. That's all that death means, so you see it isn't death at all, nor separation, nor anything but beauty, and

1Later developments make it seem probable that this was an attempt to write the familiar diminutive for which his father afterward asked, and that my "too rigid vigilance" shut out the suggestion.


 

227

THE SEVEN PURPOSES

 

greater love, and wider opportunity, and higher ideals to live to.

 

"This is what we want to share with you. We can, now. You can have a little of our knowledge, while still in that preliminary life. You can help us and yourselves by realizing and living the purpose that is ours. You have always lived it, but you haven't always recognized it. Do that, recognize it, recognize us, let us in as recognized and essential parts of your life and hope and happiness, and I shall not need to tell you that this is a true gospel. You will have proved it for yourself.

"Your son always,

"FREDERICK."

 

We were all deeply moved. After a little, Mr. Gaylord asked: "Is there anything more?"

 

Frederick began making circles, and his mother said: "He's so happy!"

 

"Happy isn't the word for it! I'm personified radiance and bliss! There isn't anything more to-night, except my love to all of you, always—and to-morrow, and the next day, and all the days to come, we are reunited and indivisible. That's enough, isn't it, sir?

Good night. FREDERICK."

 

PART - 8