On Facebook this week, tired and overwhelmed mother posted she was a bit drunk, eating a two-week-old burrito from the back of the fridge, and trying desperately to comfort her bewildered, grieving stepson. Yesterday morning the boy’s mother shot herself in her garage.
As I meditate, this morning’s moon--the thinnest sliver--seems to echo the journey of his mother, waning into death of sorts, sinking into a hole in the branches like a grave. We are all interconnected. This mother’s death, this boy’s grief, affects us like the proverbial pond ripples. We all feel touched—some even strangled—by the dark mystery of it.
Tantrikas know and practice a powerful salve for tragedy, and I’ll share it with you now: just as the flow of someone’s grief can find us, the flow of love can pour out of us and find the victim.
Dr. Ruth Westheimer wrote about a Jewish tradition, that couples would make love on the Sabbath so their Tantric energy would spill out of their bedrooms, out of their front doors, into the streets, joining with neighbors’ streams and create a powerful force for peace and blessing.
Advising people to make love on behalf of a grieving a child sounds plain odd to our western ears, although many of my students reading this will understand and employ that holy rite. But the mechanism doesn’t have be sacred sex: open your arms to the children you love and pour your hearts on them. Let them curl up in your laps and love you back. Enjoy kisses, tickles, running your fingers through their fragrant hair, play wrestling, zerberting, squeezes. In that moment of shared love, you have created a powerhouse for good. Dedicate that power to all kids who grieve, to all tortured parents who feel suicide is less painful to their children than living. Be mindful of ideas that pop into your head for helping.
I loved my babies this morning, wishing this grieving boy arms to love him in just the same way, sending milestone love blasts into his future for every anniversary of her death. I prayed for all depressed, hopeless, suicidal parents, that they would consider how their children will be treated differently their whole lives, how they will hurt every time they have to explain the suicide to a new friend. I felt inspired to ask this FB posting mama, how can those who do not know the family well help? Meal train? Gift card shower? Would sympathy cards be welcome? Just as I hit post, FB offered me an Ellen Degeneres charity montage, her voice reminding us when bad things happen we can do more than we think. Coincidence? Synchronicity.
Your love—especially when joined with mine—is a greater, more powerful mystery than we know. Let’s send it to this grieving boy and watch the comfort unfold.