Coming forth by day


“Beyond our life we meet our life.  We cannot turn in any other direction.”

Maurice Nicholl

The ancient Egyptians had an intimate relationship with the afterlife, and long past the demise of their civilisation evidence of this relationship can be found on the richly decorated walls of their temples and buildings, and in their manuscripts and papyri. For them, death was a doorway which when entered enabled the spirit to live eternally.  The welfare of the soul was of prime importance, and spells and spiritual texts accompanied the deceased, as did scrolls which were a copy of the Book of the Dead.  They believed that the death of the body was not the end of life, rather, it heralded entry into another kind of life which would never end, a life full of opportunities for growth.

All of us, at some time or other, thinks about life, death and the afterlife.  We ask ourselves such questions as, “Why was I born?”, “What happens to me when I die?”, “Is there an afterlife?”.  It is hard to find reliable answers to such fundamental questions about the reality of existence, especially when we have a need to understand the meaning of life and why we exist.   We know we die, but then what?  And what are our lives for?

How do we define our future?  Is it time-based, or timeless?  Can science provide us with the answers we need or are they to be found in a higher doctrine of knowledge?  How do we learn about life, consciousness, mind, and spirit or soul?  Is the universe merely clumps of molecules and atoms, or is it a cosmic system, governed by meaningful laws and levels?  And how do we form connections with these levels and understand these laws?

Self-understanding and self-mastery turn us inward and help us realise that life cannot be engaged with in a light-hearted manner.  The ancient Greek term, “Know thyself” not only reminds us of our cosmic duty but the spiritual destiny which awaits us after the death of our physical body.  When we search within we are in truth searching for Reality, and that is the greatest journey of all.


Michele T Knight Written by:

Dr Michele Knight is a Social Worker, Social Scientist, researcher and independent scholar. Her interest and research in the end-of-life has its origin in the lived experiences of her own bereavements, her near-death and shared-death events, the returning deceased and attitudinal responses to those experiences. Since 2006, she has been extensively involved in community development, support and advocacy in both a professional and community services/voluntary capacity in the areas of bereavement and grief, hospital pastoral care, and academic lecturing/tutoring. Her PhD, Ways of Being: The alchemy of bereavement and communique, explores the lived experience of bereavement, grief, spirituality and unsought encounters with the returning deceased.

Comments are closed.