Children and I are on the same wavelength. I adore them. They tend to love my company. We play. The child is strong within me. None more so than an adorable pair who are the children of a friend.
These girls, my “Gargoyles”, and I went to Platbos Forest the other day so that I could take some photographs of them for a project I’m working on. I want to produce a set of three images for a conceptual artwork which might illustrate the spiritual path of children.
R & S have walked a very difficult path without their father. I imagine it has been both heartbreaking and strange. And the strangeness was there when we entered Platbos Forest for the photo-shoot.
OK. Here’s a post that will have some of you running for cover. Those who belong to that part of the spectrum of humanity who are not yet ready to believe in the spiritual side of our existence.
Look, I don’t mean to alienate anyone but I won’t shirk from tackling issues which may prove uncomfortable for some. Quite apart from this, I am acutely aware of my spiritual self. My dear departed Mom, a prim, proper and rather conservative sort, always held a uncharacteristic curiosity about “the spiritual world” and took me to see a “spiritualist friend” at age 15.
I found it fascinating but was far too interested in sport, girls and bunking school to paddle down the river in an upturned zinc bath to even partially embrace it. It took many years – and some periods of adversity involving the passing of those I most loved – for me to want to become attuned to my spirituality.
So I believe. But this is not about me. This is about a viewer of this blog, a complete stranger to me, who e-mailed me today to share this…
“Hi there, I just need to share this experience with as many people as possible in the world…
Wethr u want to believe it or not, this is a picture I took on my cellphone on Friday at 18:36 at Glentana, when I later looked at the picture, I saw my dad’s face it it and he is smiling down at me from heaven. This is the most amazing thing that I have ever seen and believe me I believe it. I can also see a blackish reflection of a woman to his right, that my mom pointed out to me. They believe it to be my Aunt Annie (mom’s sister) who also died from a brain tumour. I’m telling you if I hadn’t taken this photo myself, I don’t think I would have believed this, but I do. This is the first time that I have seen my Dad or been aware of his presence, since after his passing.
In the third of my interviews (published here every weekend) with interesting people who live in my hometown of Umdloti, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, I asked the Big Five questions of Vera Hindmarch, a clairvoyant and the source of great spiritual inspiration to many…
FH:At what age did you realise that you had the ability to connect with the spirit world? And how did this come about?
VH: Although I never understood it at the time, my gift of clairvoyance and heightened awareness was strong as a child. Many experiences drove my parents up the wall. “No Dad, take the other road. Something is wrong with this one,” I would say. Of course he would not take heed and we would end up on a long detour or come across an accident. My late grandfather used to visit me and I would tell them that Grandpa said this or that. Right! I think they used to consider putting me in a straitjacket – spiritual awareness was not as known or understood as it is today. My young adult years was when my drama took place. We all go through our life’s lessons. When I came out of the drama period in my early 30s my clairvoyance returned with a greater strength and clarity. Only then did I understand the child in me.
FH:Once you had recognised and accepted that you had this power, how did you go about refining and attuning it so as to start giving people psychic readings?
VH: Meditation is the key to connect to your own soul and the spiritual world/universe. You benefit with an incredible sense of inner peace. Your guides send souls to connect to you and a dear old spiritual man in England (we lived there for a few years) took me under his wing and guided me through the doubtful times. He taught me to believe in my gift. My readings began slowly, with me simply getting messages out of the blue that helped many whose path crossed mine.
FH:I imagine it is sometimes an onerous responsibility to be the channel through which visitors make connections with loved ones who are in spirit. And I suppose that you are sometimes made aware of the prospect of bad news which may befall a visitor. How do you deal with that?
VH: God is loving and kind. Very seldom do I receive extreme negative messages – rather warnings so that a negative experience may be avoided. Although I do somethimes get bad “feelings”, I use my discretion and gently pass the message along. Why would God tell you that you are going to have an accident or worse? How would your life proceed after that other than in great fear. If a clairvoyant works in God’s light the guidance messages will be healing and helpful rather than negative.
FH: Please, Verna, if you will, share with us the most profound experience that you have had as a psychic or spiritualist, either personal or on behalf of somebody else…
VH: Here I could write a book! Let me tell you a personal story (although there are some really funny ones). While living in England, my Dad was in South Africa and was ill with cancer. It was suggested I fly home. I sent him a telegram reading “hang in there Dad, I am on my way!” (yes, there were such things as telegrams in those days!) and a red rose. The morning before my flight I awoke at 5am with my dad standing next to my bed holding in his hand a red rose. I knew he was now in spirit. My stepmother phoned. Dad had passed away just before 5am. He did receive my telegram but not the red rose. His soul knew I had sent the rose – it was in the universe! He explained that my mother, who had died many years ago, had come to his bedside and asked him go with her. He said it was the most amazing feeling as he walked away with her to spirit. He came to say his goodbyes. My mother was standing next to him.
FH:You too are blessed to live in our wonderful seaside village of Umdloti, on KwaZulu-Natal’s north coast. What does Umdloti mean to you, what do you most love about living here… and does it hold a special spiritual energy for you?
VH: From my balcony I have the most incredible view of the ocean. I am so grateful for this! Yes, Umdloti has spiritual and creative energies, but most places have if communities make it so. Most of all I love the mixture of people who live here. Small places teach you to accept people for who and what they are and remove any judgment you may have of them. The beauty of Umdloti as one walks along the beach is heavenly. The energy filled with peace and the likelihood of always bumping into someone you know and receiving that warm smile greeting. It is also that touch of mischief!
* To make an appointment for a reading, phone Verna on 084-556 2887. Verna’s book about spiritual awareness and understanding at a higher level, “Harmony”, can be bought at R130 incl postage by e-mailing her at firstname.lastname@example.org
This weekend, in the second of my series of interviews with interesting Umdlotians, I ask the Big Five Questions of art photographer Jacki Bruniquel…
Jacki Bruniquel draws on a spiritual connection with the natural environment for her artworks Pic: Hatman
FH:What sparked your interest in art/photography? And how did your work first manifest itself?
JB: I have always been interested in art, some of my first memories involve drawing Enid Blyton characters on the great big faraway fig tree at the bottom of our garden. Perhaps it was something i was born with … it was also something that was also always encouraged by my parents. My interest in photography started when I began my fine art degree at Michaelis (Cape Town). On our first day we were told to make a pinhole camera from a box, a tin, some photographic paper and a piece of Prestik. I began a love affair with the dark room right there and then and found it much more enjoyable then sketching the crusty naked hobo types they got in for life drawing classes. From a pinhole camera i went on to a Pentax and then a Hasselblad. These days I have gone digital (and really really really regret selling the Hasselblad so I could buy a ticket to London!)