This, That and Other Stuff – March 2015

Bob Neuman

Now what about those knocking and banging sounds we hear in the dead of the night? You know, the ones that make us hold our breath and tune up our ears. Are they just pipe rattles, dishes shifting in the sink or perhaps something else?

People relate encounters with the deceased. An acquaintance related how her dead mother appeared frequently, always smiling while rocking in a favorite chair.

My mother was distraught over the early death of my brother until she saw him standing at the foot of her bed. She was at peace after he spoke, “I’m alright.”

In comforting situations such as these, can we assume God in his mercy has sent the departed to us for closure and comfort?

A few years ago, books were written documenting accounts of the clinical dead who were brought back. Nearly all related being pulled through a tunnel toward a bright light and feeling happy and relaxed. They claim a preview of heaven. Skeptics will say the electronics of the brain going haywire is the cause, but is it?

Author Ruth Montgomery wrote that spirits are constantly all around us, gave many examples and even directions on how to communicate with them. My daughter resides in the home of my deceased parents. She often hears footsteps on the creaky wooden floors in the night walking from living room to kitchen. Lights go on and off, doors open and shut and the house is often filled with the scent of Mennen’s shave lotion, the only brand my father ever used.

Since my wife passed away, I have seen her twice, heard her call my name often, heard her weeping and once I was kissed twice on the forehead as I lay awake in bed. Just my mind playing games? Maybe so, but could it really be?

A friend’s daughter was driving with her three small children when a loose trailer hit. The children survived; the mother did not. Years later her 16 year old son was in the front seat of a stolen car that slammed into a tree. The driver ran away, but the boy in the back seat went to see my friend’s grandson and found him greatly hurt. Suddenly, a lady was standing near him. She moved to the injured boy, cradled him in her arms and told him everything would be alright. When sirens were heard, the lad turned briefly to look. Turning back, the woman had disappeared.

The grandson died and the boy who had come to his aid went to pay respects to the family. The deceased’s brother asked him to describe the woman, which he did. When the grandson returned with a picture of their deceased mother, the visiting boy stammered, “That is her.”

Doubters will say all the incidences and stories are merely tall tales. Much like a poem by James Whitcomb Riley’s Little Orphan Annie, which includes the sentence, “An’ the Gobble-uns’ at gets you Ef you don’t watch out.”

Can we really say spirits are not always near us or that departed friends and relatives are unable to return to give us solace? Is it possible there are things beyond this universe we cannot comprehend? Will we ever know?