An extract from Loser on Earth, Winner in Heaven - a novel that unveils the mysteries of incarnation.
You've heard about how dying works: you leave your body, an angel lifts you up, and it guides you through a tunnel of light. Some people don't realise they have died, but I didn't have a shadow of a doubt about it. The second I left my body, I felt so light. I hadn't yet left the Liverpool Metro station where I died, but I felt as happy and free as the Count of Monte Cristo when he escaped from jail.
When I noticed my body lying on the ground, surrounded by disturbed commuters, I realized that I was dead. Though it wasn't hard to understand that I had died, it was confusing, because I felt more alive than ever.
As I was processing all of this, a luminous, strangely familiar looking figure stopped me. The bottom half of his body was blurry, but I could see two beams of light jetting out from his back.
"Matt, I'm Jeremiah, your guardian angel. Do you remember me?"
"Did you just say guardian angel?" I asked.
"You heard right. Jeremiah. I've been watching over you since you were born."
Oh, okay. And you've been on sabbatical, right? Because honestly, I would have appreciated a little help here."
"I've always been at your side, helping you. Although, you haven't needed me much: you've done so well on your own."
"Err, you're being ironic, right?"
"If we go through the tunnel of light, you can make your life review, and you'll be able to understand how outstanding your life has been. They're all waiting for you on the other side with open arms."
"Right now, I just want to say goodbye to my family."
"you can try, but they wont be able to see or hear you. I suggest that you go to Heaven and come back to visit them when they are at peace. Then they'll be able to feel your presence."
"I'm not going to review my own life. And I don't want anyone to review it for me either."
"Nobody is going to judge you, Matt. Besides, you have so much more to be proud of than you give yourself credit for. Please, let me take you through the tunnel."
"You're kidding me. I know how my life went."
"Where I'm from we aren't allowed to deceive others. Trust me, and believe me when I say that you have no idea how important your life has been."
My life has so obviously been a waste that his words are offensive to me.
"Wait," I said. "I think you've got the wrong Matt. I'm the musician."
"I've been watching you since you were born. I know that you don't believe me, but your life serves as an example to many other souls who want to incarnate."
When I heard him, I wondered if angels were mentally sound. But strangely, he didn't seem or look insane.
"Lets make a deal," he said. "You go over your life, telling me all the things you think you did right and wrong, and then we'll show your list to the Heavenly Guides. For everything you evaluate correctly, I'll grant you a wish in your next life."
"What do you mean 'in my next life'? I don't want to incarnate again."
"You don't have to choose to incarnate right now. And you don't have to go to Heaven right away either. We can go into the tunnel and stay there while you tell me your version of your life."
"Why can't we just stay here?"
We can, but the tunnel isn't going to be open forever. And I wouldn't want to be left here when it closes. Staying on earth without a physical body isn't a good idea."
I could tell from his tone that it would be better to follow his advice, so I went with him. The tunnel was difficult to describe. It was spacious, but it didn't really have clear dimensions, because everything was made of light. It was a really intense white light, but for some reason it wasn't blinding.
In the tunnel I felt even lighter, and honestly, it ended up feeling quite nice.
"Do you want to sit?" Jeremiah motioned towards sofas (also made of light) that were coincidentally the exact same shapes as the ones in my house. I settled into one comfortably.
"Alright, I'm listening. I know your life inside out, but I want to hear your version. This is going to be interesting..."
The smug confidence exuding from Jeremiah was starting to annoy me, but something inside me kept telling me to follow his advice, so I agreed.
"I'd rather write. It would be easier for me to..."
Before I could finish my sentence, a pen made of light appeared in my hand, and I found myself sitting at a desk with paper made of light."
"Are you comfortable?" he asked.
"Take as much time as you need. Don't be surprised if you explain your entire life all at once. As soon as you leave the density of the world behind, you start to access the clarity of your soul."
I didn't understand exactly what he was talking about, so I just ignored him and started writing the review of my life - a failure of a life. I didn't really believe anyone could persuade me that I had made the right choices throughout my life, but I decided to write it anyway. I was interested in hearing their version. I decided that putting a plus sign (+) next to the good things and a negative sign (-) next to the bad ones would work nicely.
And so I reviewed the thirty-one years of my life.
My Disaster of a Life
My father has always wanted me to become an elite athlete because he was a physical education instructor. But for better of for worse - and its always for worse - I've only ever been interested in music.
My mother said that she always knew I was going to be a singer. When I was thirteen months old I heard Elvis Presley singing, and I stood up in the cradle as if I were onstage. I grabbed the bars and tried to get closer to the radio. Apparently, it was the first time my mother saw me actually be interested in something: it seemed like I was almost always absent from the world.
From that day on, my parents never left me without music, especially when they wanted me to 'come back to the real world'. But my head was almost always in the clouds, and at six years old I was diagnosed with autism.
When my parents learned about the autism, they started to focus much more on me, to the detriment of my little sister Claire. My mother bought special materials to try and teach me new things every day, but I would forget almost everything as soon as I learned about them.
For his part, my father tried to teach me using the only thing he understood: sports. And even though I was a mediocre athlete at best, he kept trying to make me into a professional for years.
The summer before I started secondary school, my father told me that I needed to be a good example for the other students, as the child of a teacher. But I was only ever a bad example - I wasn't interested in anything the teachers ever said. (-) For not trying to learn.
Despite my parents' best efforts, I was almost always failing. When I was fourteen years old, I was transferred to an easier school, which specialised in the arts, where I found a fantastic teacher who taught me how to play guitar...
Submit Your Own Article