I wonder how my aunt felt about me. I know that I love my nieces and nephews, but I really don't love them as an Uncle. I love them as friends, as companions with whom I able to share my feelings and life. I don't love them because they're my nieces and nephews; I love them because we are able to somehow communicate about what it feels like to be alive.

I wonder how my aunt felt about me. When I was about ten, my parents arranged that I would go visit my Aunt and Uncle and cousins. Their home seemed very far away; it was in the Midwest, which seemed like a world away from our home in New England. But really, to me, I wasn't visiting my cousins' family and home; I was visiting my Aunt.

My Aunt Mar was strict, or cold, or somehow different than my Mom, her sister. Mom was warm and emotional, and knew how to apply guilt like nobody's business. Aunt Mar didn't do that. She told you what to do; she let you know what was expected, and you did it. No guilt. Just fear of what might happen if you didn't do what you were supposed to do.

Anyway, I went to visit my Aunt and I don't remember anything about it except sleeping in the basement. I don't have any memories of either Uncle Joe or my cousins. For all I know, they might have all been away. Just my Aunt.

I wonder how she felt. Was she excited I was coming to visit, like I would be if one of my nephews or nieces were coming to visit me? Was she looking forward to talking to me? Or, was she simply looking forward to a visit from her sister's kid?

But really, when I think of my Aunt and Uncle and cousins, it is the cousins for whom I have real impressions. Aunt Mar wasn't a person to me. I simply didn't know her, except to know that she was strict. Uncle Joe was fun, but again, I really didn't know him. My cousins however, they were real people. I understood that they had feelings and wants. I didn't know them, but I had emotional impressions of them. Marcia was an adult, like my much older sister. Mark was if anything, even more of an adult; he knew how to get things done. Mary Beth was a fun loving older sister like my second oldest sister. And Joannie was a loving older person, almost adult, like my older brother. And Chip, the cousin who was about my age, was a kid, like me. But that's all I had, impressions. Guesses about who they were. I know some people know their cousins, and indeed I think my brother and sisters knew them, but I didn't. They were merely impressions of people I saw every couple of years, until I visited when I was ten. And that was the end. I never saw any of them again, until last year, when I was fifty and went to join them at their mother's funeral.

In truth, I saw them a few times, but I barely remember. I went to my Grandpa's funeral when I was twelve or so; I remember having a crush on Joannie then. They, at least some of them, came to my siblings' weddings, and to my Mom's funeral. I don't know if I was a particularly self-absorbed kid, or what. But I simply don't recall seeing any of them at any of those events. I feel a little bad about that, but what can I do? I guess I was doing something else and I simply don't remember.

But I do remember visiting Mary Beth and Aunt Mar at Mary Beth's house in Los Angeles ten or fifteen years ago. It was startling. I hugged these women who I barely knew and had not seen for twenty or thirty years and they felt like family. Mary Beth was a joyous living sister I never knew I had and Aunt Mar, Man!, Aunt Mar, she felt like my Mom who had died five years before. I hugged Aunt Mar and suddenly realized my Mom's sister was in my arms. It felt wonderful!

So, remembering that incident, I went to Aunt Mar's funeral, eagerly. I went hoping I would discover I had five new siblings. And, I did. They all felt like sisters and brothers. And even their spouses, and their children, and their children's friends, they all felt like family. I suddenly discovered that my small family wasn't small. I had over forty more relatives I never knew I knew!

But that's not what I want to talk about. I want to talk about death. I want to talk about life and death.

I had a great idea the weekend of the funeral. I realized that I was confused. I had heard rumours about my cousins' lives, but I really didn't know who they were or what they had been doing since I last saw them when I was ten. So, I asked them, each of them, "What have you been doing since I was ten?" I want to talk about Joanie's response. Joanie told me she had had a son who had died. In large part, that was what Joannie had been doing, all the time since I was ten. She was living with the experience of having had a son who had died.

Driving home, thinking about what Joannie had said, I managed to put into words in my mind what I believe. What I believe I know. I want to try to write down those words.

Physical reality is a projection. A projection from a deeper, higher, more meaningful reality. A reality that has multiple layers, each of which is a projection of deeper, higher, more meaningful layers of reality.

I do not simply mean that that there are multiple layers of meaning in reality. I am not referring to the fact that we can have different perspectives on the incidents that comprise our lives. I mean that physical reality, in a real way, does not exist. It is simply a projection, from a direction that is orthogonal to every direction we can perceive in the physical space time reality we normally perceive.

There are beings in the deeper layers of reality. These beings project aspects of themselves and by projecting, create physical reality and everything here including our selves. Everything we know and think and feel and do and experience and encounter is part of the projection.

The beings in the deeper layers of reality are not distinct or separate. There are not well defined boundaries between these beings. They project reality together. They decide together what to project and how the projection will evolve.

When the beings project aspects of themselves, the projections may manifest in our reality as chairs, or stones, or concepts, or creatures like ourselves. Our lives, our entire reality, is planned, by beings who project our reality into existence.

When a being begins to project an aspect of itself into this reality as a human, the human is born. When the being withdraws the projection from this reality back into itself, the human dies. But nothing is really born or dies. The being did not start to exist or end existing. An aspect of the being merely projected into here for a while.

There are layers in reality. Our normal physical reality is a projection from a deeper layer of reality. That layer is also a projection from a still deeper layer of reality. And that layer is a projection from an even still deeper layer of reality. There are many, many of these layers of reality. And that system of layers of reality is another layer of reality, which is a projection of a still deeper and more complex layer of reality. There are many, many layers of layers of reality. The beings which project reality exist deep, deep, deep, into the layers of layers of layers of layers of reality. The beings are so far removed from our everyday lives, that they are nearly irrelevant to us. It is not possible to make any conscious action which effects them or the layers of reality in which they exist. And although they project us and everything we hope and dream and do, because we are so far removed from them, we effectively have free will.

Occasionally, if we are blessed, we discover that we are designed to see, and perhaps understand, a fraction of the structure of reality. That is one of life's greatest joys. And sometimes, if we are blessed, we see that something we have done, or are doing, is part of the larger plan that is behind the projection of physical reality. That is another of life's greatest joys. But most of the time, we are oblivious and do not recall anything of the structure of reality. We simply live in physical reality. But even if we do not know it, we are still part of the projection and the plan behind the projection. When life is difficult, it can be comforting to remember that we are part of the projection even if we do not know it at the time.

Physical reality is not physically connected to the deeper layers of reality. The deeper layers of reality are not physical. Science can not detect the deeper layers of reality. However, the structure of physical reality in many ways is a model of the structure of the layers of deep reality. Scientists sometimes experience visions of the structure of deep reality and when they test their descriptions, their tests are positive; these tests show that physical reality in some ways model deep reality. Sometimes scientists describe physical reality and people see that those descriptions also describe deep reality. The scientists may or may not realize they are also describing deep reality.

The words Beauty, Love, and Light are often used to describe what people see when they become aware of deep reality. The projections that create physical existence are Beauty, Love, and Light.