The fire is extraordinary. It is electric blue. The flames stream and dance like shimmering blue silk. It is lovely and beckoning. Yet it is fire, and what is beyond it is unknown. So there is hesitation, and some fear.
One who has passed this way before enters the fire like a dancer, becomes a figure of bright flame, and is gone. The others join the dance, and move through the blue fire. There is no pain. The pain was on the other side.
Loving arms receive them. The angels have familiar faces. They are going to a new school, a pleasant place on a green hill, among beds of flowers and flowering trees. The course selection is amazing. Whatever they have learned already will be put to use, and their classes and assignments will be built around their curiosity, passion and imagination.
They will want to communicate with those they left behind, to try to ease their grief by letting them know that there truly is a better place, beyond the pain of the world, where learning and growth continue, and where fun and adventure are encouraged, and where the most important skill is the ability to make things up.
Every experience is different, here even more than in the previous world. They are cheered by watching a graduating class, gathered on the green hill in front of an ivy-wrapped, warm brick building. They are dressed in simple white smocks. Their voices are achingly beautiful. Their songs are not hymns from church, or what used to play on headphones.
Sunrise, sunset, evening star
What cannot be seen in the dream
cannot be seen in its glory
I walk and talk with some of the faculty. A donnish, tweedy man with a mustache reminds me of my favorite teacher in high school, eons ago, a British professor of ancient history who decided to come out of retirement to share his passion with hormonal boys in a burned landscape in Australia. What is the name of this school? Alma Mater, of course, Mother Soul.
I discovered this school of Mother Soul when I started teaching public dream classes, more than 20 years ago. I asked, in the night, to see what I most needed to teach and found myself leading a class through that blue fire. Since then, I have visited this Alma Mater many times, and have found that its offerings are ever-growing. Some students study communications, learning and inventing techniques to facilitate helpful contact between people on this side and those left behind in the physical world. There is great compassion, among the faculty, for the grief of the survivors, and great eagerness, among the students, to alleviate that pain by reaching back to offer love and direct knowledge of life beyond life.
I do not know where the victims of the Newtown horror are going, but I know that there are beautiful schools, for students on all levels, on the Other Side, and guides to show the way, and I am certain that the souls of the innocent are held in the arms of angels.