“After the game both kings and pawns go back in the box”.  A chess metaphor surely.  One that I read in some newspaper column years back, it being cited as an old Italian proverb.  One of my Italian friends said he’d heard it was Polish.  Whatever its provenance, it’s also a concise and succulent statement of the ambitious and competitive actions undertaken during incarnation and the inevitable quashing of it beyong that transition many see as the door of death, the one way door that slams shut behind you.

The notion, expressed in the image of the box shutting in its lively contestants, amuses me no end.  That’s the me that talks to the various dead in realms so distinct from each other that the ‘many mansions’ metaphor only goes part way to describe.  Whatever their comfort zone in the spheres of spirit, hells, purgatories, heavens or paradises, the former contestants have been forcibly retired, some gently by health decline and some violently by accident, crime or natural disaster, and look back from retirement at the various activities they either ruefully miss or gladly reject, often wondering what got them so fired up about them in the first place. Like seniors revisiting the follies of youth and chuckling at their naive passions, the newly dead repeat those bemused backward glances as they rest on the astral laurels they feel are theirs.

When I chat with them at astral plane garden parties, as I often do, and hear of their grandchildren’s achievements and beautiful babies, I feel that not much, other than anxiety and illness, has changed from the late-in-life rewards of incarnation, and that even the bitching about corporations and politicians holds an enduring charm.  Spiritualists and mystics haved been saying as much for decades, if not centuries of course, essentially that other than dropping the physical body souls are essentially the same in the astral, if emotions, thoughts and habits are to count.

Speaking of habits, I remain a keen consumer of world events and political activity as reported in our media, both mainstream and alternate.  Despite the gloom and desperation occasioned by the regular outburts of ruthless and selfish crfuelty doled out by individuals and countries to perceived enemies and oh-so-worthy transgressors, I remain actively engaged with the mad complexities of political and economic forces fighting for traction and advantage daily.

It is not anymore fascinating than the progress of the seasons, those magical and mysterious transformations propelled by mother nature, the wonderful creations in the fields of arts and sciences, the discoveries, innovations and inspirations that map the tides of human invention, or the spiritual puzzles that pervade our being on this planet, but they are on a par with them, at least for me.  The rich tapestry of life and all that.

But my practice of telepathic mediumship and consciousness projection gives me the ongoing and undeniable perspective of the eternities dipped into between lives, when souls slowly come to see how egotistically ambitious and self centered their activities were, even those who practised kindness, tolerance and non-judgemental compassion as a given rather than a special occasion with party hats and streamers.

Kings, queens, bishops, knights and pawns, we all play that game of life, some timidly and some to the hilt, until illness and old age sap the mainspring of its juice and we are jettisoned into the paradise we left behind in our stampede for a womb, a family and a life of challenge, reward and most of all, action.

In eternity, in its various guides, heavens, hells and formless energy planes, where identity erasure is the game, we are ageless and beyond any handy definition, spirits exploring our notions of play.  Yup, we’re ‘back in the box’, swept up by the game player when it was deemed to be over.  Deemed to be over by what or whom?  A God, evolutions’ lifetides, fleshy nature shutting up shop?  Many, pausing to ponder between bouts of relief and sheer wonder, reach out to compare and share answers, while others are satisfied with the removal of extinction and the surprise pleasures of paradise.

But here, as the willing prisoners of time and space, learning by trial and error exactly what can be accomplished with desire and ambition and feeling the steady acumulation of karma, both ‘good’ and ‘bad’, we are caught up in the game and go ahead mostly blind.  And as we interact with others’ desires, crossing swords and hearts, we develop the techniques and slippery cunning that charms us with results and repels us when spied in others.  Karma and conscience assume many forms, the mirror being but one.  The pawns never like to see themselves in kings.  At least when they’re out of the box playing…and being played.