One of Merilyn’s personal desires in her life was to write stories that entertained and inspired. This was something she didn’t really get a chance to do as much as she would have like to while she was alive, so it is my hope that the story of her death and cremation will help to fulfill her desire to inspire others. I know I am inspired and awed by the magic of these events.
Merilyn is my Mother. We had the great fortune of being in a priestess community together. When she became a priestess a few short months after me, I addressed the card I gave her To My Sister Mom! From then on she always signed her notes and cards to me as Sister Mom. We were the first Mother/Daughter priestesses in our network and we were the first to also be in a circle together that formed as the process continued to grow. In the story that follows I mention our priestess sisters who have shown up beautifully in many ways to honor her life and death.
August 25th Merilyn Helen Judd Massey was cremated. Several of us gathered to honor her and the burning of her body in the alchemical fire of transformation. Unbeknownst to us, we were also about to witness a miracle. I had brought Merilyn’s Kwan Yin statue to the ceremony (the symbolism and significance of Kwan Yin is explained a bit more in the rest of the story). For no apparent reason we can discern the statue began forming beads of water around the vase in Kwan Yin’s hand. Until now this was simply a beautiful, but otherwise ordinary statue. This statue of Kwan Yin, depicts her standing on a dragon with a jar or vase in one hand perched over the dragon’s open mouth, and the beads of water were dripping directly into the dragon’s mouth. (Year’s later I learned this statue is actually designed to drip water like this however I didn’t know that at the time I wrote this…and the statue had never dripped water to my knowledge before this time).
I don’t know much about this statue or even where my Mom got it. What I do know is this. The statue was in my Mother’s bedroom in her home. I noticed it sitting on a dresser when were moving her from her old home to an apartment in July, 1998. My Mom was very clear that she didn’t want any of her altar items or things from her past to go with her to her new apartment. Yet, each time I passed by this Kwan Yin statue I had a strong sense she wanted to come with us. Finally, I could no long ignore the message and I mentioned it. My Mom agreed Kwan Yin could come to her new place. I know Kwan Yin watched over the entire process of my Mom’s transition.
After my Mom died a few days later we were moving her things out of the apartment. I carefully wrapped Kwan Yin up and put her in a box, where she was until I took the statue still wrapped to the cremation ceremony. I unwrapped the statue and placed her on the altar. It was sometime later when we were drumming and chanting that I noticed a bead of water forming on the vase in Kwan Yin’s hand. I paused, looked closer and wondered if this bead of water had spilled from somewhere. However, as we continued to watch the statue it continued to form new beads of water throughout the ceremony. I took the statue home and it continued to drip for several days after the ceremony. I emptied the water from the statue many times anointing everyone in the vicinity with the holy water. The statue continued to have water in it and even to this day (now 10 years later) there is still water in the statue.
One of my priestess sisters shared with me during the cremation ceremony that she too had wanted to ask Merilyn to signal us from the other side. We all felt this is exactly what Merilyn was doing. Kwan Yin is the Chinese name for Tara, and in the west she is Mother Mary, all representing the compassionate Mother who brings relief to those who suffer. Another sacred sister shared a dream she had about this very thing. In her dream she got the sense that the Lotus Flower Kwan Yin is holding in her other hand is supplying the nectar that is dripping from the vase. The nectar of the Lotus represents complete enlightenment* and it is feeding the dragon which represents the world of time and space where we live when we are in physical form. The nectar of complete enlightenment dripping into the dragon’s mouth also represents the fulfillment of Celestial Earth. In Bonnie’s dream Merilyn appeared to her in the form of a ruby rose colored bird and she told Bonnie that this complete enlightenment is what she is experiencing all the time now.
One of my priestess sister’s said she felt this was a sign of nourishment and being on track as the statue is not crying tears but rather is feeding or nourishing the dragon. I trust more will reveal itself around this symbolism and what is apparent now is that we are witness to an amazing miracle. The miracle of Merilyn’s conscious death and her communication with us from the other side is inspiring. I feel this is a great confirmation about Merilyn’s commitment to continue to work with us and link with us from the other side. Thank you Mom, I really love you!!!
Blessed Be! Carolyn Sky Dancer (n.k.a. Cayelin Castell)
*In October, 1995 I had the privilege of participating in the 21 praises of Tara Dance. The aspect of Tara given to me to dance was Complete Enlightenment and as a result the name Tara gave me was Sky Dancer. Thus, the theme of complete enlightenment is even more personally significant to me and especially when considering the close connection between Tara and Kwan Yin.