In Search of Wisdom: Part II – Chapter 11
At their going, the spell was broken. Janet, Elizabeth and I looked wonderingly at each other and at our angel-guide. I knew that all that had passed through my mind had passed through theirs also, since we had shared our growing knowledge, step by step.
“Shall we join them on the hilltop?” queried our guide.
We nodded assent, and in a moment were wheeling rapidly over the long, winding pathway until we very soon alighted at the fringe of trees.
To our surprise we found that this semi-circle was made up of many rows of trees, and that the space between each tree was filled by another in the row behind.
“Just like cinema seats!” I whispered, and the angel smiled. “I think it is like a bandstand on a beach of earth,” Janet answered.
“Well, perhaps a little of each,” Elizabeth conceded.
The great procession had completely disappeared, yet now we were on the hilltop, we could hear their chanting again.
“They are psalms,” Janet whispered delightedly.
Extending my sight so that it pierced the thick barrier of trees, I saw that the winding pathway continued down the hill on the other side and into a valley where a wide river flowed. But what drew our gaze most of all was the choir. They were massed within the semicircle-angels, men and the lesser brethren ! There had been a slight pause as we alighted, but now the angel-conductor lifted his baton and a great sound began to roll forth. From the centre of the group came the singing voices; the lesser brethren were in front, “giving tongue”, at the appointed time. On either side were the musicians, both angels and men. On the left, the stringed instruments and on the right the wind instruments.
We were enchanted with this wonderful orchestra. From the depths of the trees came mighty organ notes, yet even these did not drown the chanting of the great procession, far below.
“How-lovely!” Janet breathed.
“You see,” murmured our guide, “every note of music expresses the Father’s Love, just as the colours do. That is what makes it all so beautiful.”
For a long time we sat and listened as psalm after psalm rolled forth in praise of the King. We were all completely convinced by the “singing” of the lesser brethren. Their voices blended wonderfully and they obviously put all their hearts into these songs to their Creator.
At last Janet could keep silent no longer and she started to sing very softly with the choir. At this our guide rose and, approaching the angel-conductor, whispered something into his ear. When the psalm ended, he turned, smiling at Janet and holding out his baton.
“Oh, I couldn’t,” Janet stammered in confusion. “I know nothing of music really.”
The angel came closer. “My child,” he said gently, “you have music in your heart.”
Raising her, he put the baton into her hand and led her in front of the choir. For a moment she hesitated and then a great light sprang up in her face. She squared her shoulders and lifted her chin as though suddenly filled with power. Quietly she spoke to the choir, then lifted the baton. I held my breath as the wonderful music rolled forth.
“Praise ye the Lord! Praise God in His sanctuary.
Praise Him in the firmament of His power.
Praise Him for His mighty acts.
Praise Him according to His excellent greatness.
Praise Him with the sound of the trumpet.
Praise Him with the psaltery and harp.
Praise him with timbrel and dance.
Praise Him with stringed instruments and organs.
Praise Him upon the loud cymbals. Praise Him upon the high-sounding cymbals.
Let everything that hath breath praise the Lord. Praise ye the Lord!”
A long time after that Janet, Elizabeth and I were wheeling on our way. We were still singing!
We passed rapidly over the intervening Circles for we were eager to reach the centre. However, we took case to observe as much as possible on the way. Extending our sight, we each acquired facts to share with the others, and so we had a fairly good idea of the Plane Between.
“Yet I wonder if we have every really seen it at all?” Janet queried. “We have learned so much of the expansion of consciousness and the growing keenness of the senses of perception, that I suspect our impression is somewhat incomplete!”
“There is much more to discover, I dare say,” I agreed.
“Well, it is sure to be lovelier than ever,” Elizabeth said with conviction.
On our way we passed over the Circle of Learning and there many classes were being conducted by angels and men. People who had yearned for a higher education and had been denied it on earth, received all the knowledge they cared to absorb here. Some of them spent a very long time in this Circle. One section desired to have a general education and to these a succession of competent teachers came. Others wished to specialise, and these eagerly sought out a class which dealt in their chosen subject, remaining until the thirst for knowledge was satisfied. Many of the pupils were children. Their lessons were interspersed with games and they were very happy.
“I wonder what happens when they are all fully educated?” Elizabeth was deeply interested.
I reached out for the information, saying:
“Their knowledge is used and they are given fullest scope for their talents, for nothing good is ever wasted in Heaven’s realm.”
“Of course, I might have known that,” Elizabeth agreed.
“How complete Heaven is,” Janet said dreamily. “Every moment draws us closer to the King of Love.”
As we passed the Circle cf Books, we looked out for Arthur and at last caught a glimpse of him. He was walking along a kind of corridor, and on either side were rows upon rows of books. Every now and then he lifted one down to dip into it, then, before replacing it, he would caress its handsome covers smilingly.
“How strange. I did not know there were any books in Heaven’s realm,” I commented, and Janet said quickly:
“But don’t you remember that this is the plane between earth and Heaven? We could not soar at once to the highest spiritual plane without a little pining for earth-things.”
“Of course,” I agreed. “This is a kind of intermediate step, isn’t it? How gentle the Father is with us.”
“I wonder how it is that all the volumes are so beautifully bound?” Elizabeth had been extending her sight to inspect the long rows. Then, even as she voiced the question, the truth came into her mind. “Why,” she exclaimed delightedly, “It is because the authors always desire to see their works like this. How natural for them to wish it and how lovely for the wish to be granted.”
“‘Heaven is fulfilment’ “I quoted.