There was a ‘wake’ recently for a marvelous and brilliant artist who has been an influence on me since my teens. Norval Morrisseau died, passed over into the spirit world, a world which, it seems, he already dwelled in, bringing its astonishing, shocking and vivid messages to us in the world of the living. I remember being deeply moved, and magnetised, by the explosive energy of the colours he used, and by the magical themas which he dwelled in: the transforming and transfiguring shamans, the manimals, the codes of connecting forces of energy.

I am thrilled by the use of the word ‘wake’.
The gathering of people; friends, family, loved ones, after someone has left.
Ain’t it true that when something, someone, dies we ourselves are presented a door by which to ‘wake’ up. A slap in the face, a kick in the ass, a shot straight into the diaphragm of your being which leaves you gasping for breath.
‘Waking’ requires the death of the dream we’ve been living in. That dream being precisely everything we know and understand and trust about ourselves.

So, I’m thrilled that there is a deep embed of the word ‘wake’ into the language and experience of death. Wisely wrestled, bravely battled, death becomes a pry bar, a lever, to awakening.

‘Wake’ : a most valuable addition to any useful lexicon.

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