I am not here with them, but I can see them a group of people in every imaginable form of appearance. Their many forms of appearance make all the more impression on me because they are not imagined they are real! Small babies, some only a day old, and many younger than that. Handsome children, ugly children. Young adults. People of greying years. Grey, old people. Some, in each of the ages, have faces haunted by pain. Some have bodies wasted by sickness or by hard usage. Some are horribly mutilated and dismembered by violent forces. Others merely look surprised, or less than that. They are all of them, just this very instant, newly dead.
"Hello," says a voice. "You are here. Four things will happen here, one of which is this Arrival Lecture. In this lecture, I will tell you about the other events. I will tell you now, because when they happen, you will be less likely to listen." All of the group of people remain as they were; those who can, standing; those who can, facing the source of the voice. I see them, but I cannot see the speaker. A dense fog or mist is all around. The voice says, "You have just died. All of you died at exactly the same instant. None of you were conscious of birth. Some of you learned more than others in the Soul School, that time between birth and death. All of you are conscious now, and will remember everything that happens from now on, as well as everything you have experienced when you were conscious before death.
"You are here, somewhere outside the Gates of Heaven. You will, in a moment, be bathed in the light of God. You will be further equipped. You will be free to go."
A brilliant white golden light covered the People. Wounds closed, sores healed, backs straightened. "You will feel better than on that day, if you ever had a healthy day, when you felt the very best in your life before." The People changed in the white golden light. They all became slim and straight, all light and strong. They all changed to one height (I think about 1.5 metres). They all looked marvellous! Their bodies were covered with fine colours each of the People was only one colour, but not all were the same colour. Did they have fine fur, like cats? Were these soft flight suits? Their faces were not at all identical.
"Just as you are conscious, so do you keep your faces healthy, vibrant, and You," said the voice.
How their eyes shown! I felt tears in my own eyes at seeing how excited, how excited they were!
The voice continued, "In the palm of your left hand there will be a mark it is the stamp of your arrival here so it is, for all of you, the same."
As the voice continued, I could see the marks in some of the People's palms. It was as if I could zoom in with a telephoto lens, although I could in no way approach them.
"In your right palms you will see two pictures. One, the one on the left, is how you looked on Arrival. The other, on the right, is how you look now. The bar between the pictures you can refer to whenever you want to recall this Arrival Lecture."
"The picture of how you look now shows you correctly you do have wings. Yes, you can fly."
The white golden light disappeared. The mist was also gone. The People, standing in rows ranged above and below each other, stood on ledges on the sheer face of an enormously high mountain. The voice said, "Remember, this is fun. I am sure I do not need to thank you for your attention. You can go now."
Some of the People flew away almost immediately. Some were terrified. Some of them fell. Of those who fell, some began to fly and others fell, and fell, and fell. Just before they hit the bottom, their wings worked quickly (a reflex?) so that they landed softly and safely. I couldn't see any of them, any more.
Vision After Life On Earth appeared in The Armchair Aesthete.