The Seeker’s reverie was interrupted by the quiet whisper of the Page who continued to gaze down into the water. Her eyes were misty, and a longing glowed from her face.
“See how they love one another…”
The Seeker stepped to the wall of the balcony and peered down. Below she saw a handsome couple swimming together in the cove. Both were adorned with golden arm bands. The man wore a gold crown; the woman’s long, flowing hair was dressed with beautiful flowers. The sun shown on the pair, the reflection from their golden bands sparkling in the water like gems. And beyond them, in the cove, rose two large fish. The Seeker watched in wonder as they soared gracefully through the air as one then slid as smoothly back into the water. Over and over they jumped with great abandon. She smiled feeling their joy well up inside her. After a time she turned her attention back to the couple in the water.
“Who are they?” she asked the Page.
“They are disciples of the Creator,” she said, “as are we all here. See how they look at one another. Such love.” The Page sighed, set the cup down, and seated herself on the wall. “I long to have a relationship like that. To be cocooned with one I love and forget about the world around me.”
At the romantic notion, the Seeker’s brow crinkled. The Page’s whisper had been familiar. Then she remembered the command of the holy scrolls:
“As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know you are my disciples.”*
She remembered the words, but now she wondered at their meaning as she considered the Page’s youthful sentiment and the way the two gazed at each other, for she knew that was not all the sacred words said of love. There were other commands as well.
Curious now, the Seeker excused herself and went down the marble staircase from the balcony, leaving the Page to her daydreaming. The breeze from the retreating storm caught her beret and lifted it from her head. The Mother’s words echoed through her memory, “Never be parted from your beret and feather for it will teach your mind what your heart already knows.” Quickly she grabbed it before it could be blown away, and pulled it down tightly over her hair.
At the bottom of the stairs she stepped onto a beach of pure white sand. So caught up in each other were they, the man and woman were insensible of her approach. As she stood on the shore watching she was once more mesmerized by the the huge fish continuing their romp in the cove. They sailed into the air in perfect unison as in a dance. The Seeker wondered what it would feel like to be in such accord with someone or something else… Perhaps even the Creator. That was, after all, why she was on this journey.
The sun began to shine brighter and brighter, when suddenly above the couple hovered a beautiful woman with soft, pale, fluttering wings, her bright copper hair glowing like fire. Though she had never seen one, the Seeker had read of these heavenly beings in the scrolls. This, she knew, was an Angel, a messenger of the Creator.
As she watched, the Angel spread her arms above the man and woman and, in a language the Seeker did not know, uttered what could only have been a blessing. The pair smiled at the Angel and disappeared into the cool, green water, swimming out to where the fish still frolicked.
“They are yet like children swimming in the waters of life,” the Angel said, smiling as she watched them go, “still learning about the love of the Creator as are all in the village. And still wanting to keep that love to themselves like a pearl of great price.”
But the Seeker recalled then the Creator’s command that had stirred in her heart at the Page’s words. “Love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.”** She nodded to the Angel in understanding.
“We’re not only to love our sisters and brethren in the faith. We’re to love everyone everywhere, are we not?”
“Yes. But not humans only,” the Angel said, pointing to the fish. “We are to love ALL of Creation. Do you see the dolphins?”
The Seeker shook her head yes, glad to know at last what they were called.
“They are of the most beautiful creations of the Creator. They represent the harmony that would envelop this world if all humans could learn to love. For the Creator has said, ‘Ask the animals, and they will teach you, or the birds in the sky, and they will tell you; or speak to the earth, and it will guide you, or let the fish in the sea inform you. Which of all these does not know that my hand has made all this? In my hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind.’”***
“This is an important lesson, is it not?” asked the Seeker.
“It is the foundation of the sacred stories. All things are one. All things are connected. All things deserve to be loved and respected. Remember this truth on your journey. Blessed be your path, Seeker. And blessed be those whose lives you touch.”
With that the Angel closed her wings about her and rose higher and higher into the sky until she was out of sight.
© Cheryl D. Carter
Picture Credit — personal (see also www.aeclectic.net)