Chapter Fifty Three
Angel stood in front of the mirror. He looked at his face analyzing the amazing changes that have been shaping his skin up until now.
He sees in front of him a man, an adult, a self made person who had made it far enough.
23 he thought, the age when his life began unfolding.
23, a young innocent age when everything started changing to shape him into whom he is now.
He’s looking at his reflection, trying to find a trace of seniority, maybe grey hairs or imprinted wrinkles yet he finds none.
Then again it’s only been seven years. 30 does not mark these traits unless they are inherited , which they are, which is why he looks for these traits.
He looks at his face, the face of a thirty year old man, and he wonders if there is any actual significance to that mystical number.
It took God seven days to create the world; it took this man seven years to find the right path. Seven days of the week, like the seven years that have passed by since the accident that changed his life.
The seven wonders of the world
The Seven continents.
The Seven colors of the rainbow.
The Seven Deadly Sins.
One comes to Angels mind… and how difficult it was to overcome it and come to terms with it, now the only lust he has is the lust for life.
The seven astrological signs with opposites, beginning with the seventh sign, Angel’s sign, the zodiacal constellation of Libra.
The scales of justice and peace.
Angel thought deeper into this number, realizing that his ability to over analyze things just got sharper and stronger as the years went by.
He thought of India, and he thought of his most valuable lesson learned there,
The power of meditation. A spiritual practice that helps any man be in tune with his inner self, with the seven centers of energy…..
The seven chakras.
He looked at himself and kept on thinking on the meaning of this number.
Now a thirty year old man Angel has very little time to look at himself and think of what he’s become, or of how lucky he has been cheating death more than once.
It had been a year ago since Angel came to Greece with his family, and very rapidly he thought to himself that luck had been on his side all along. Even when things seemed at the point of darkness and failure.
He dug deeper into the meaning of this wonderful number, this number that apparently was like a string that held together a collection of things that were all somehow interlinked by a mere number.
And finally he remembered his death, and how he was gone for exactly seven minutes before he was revived.
To be dead for seven minutes and be able to remember them and treasure them so internally is something that can last a life time, and for many, like in Angel’s case it’s a powerful reason to keep on moving forward.
Now at thirty, Angel looks back at the past seven years of his life and how one way or another a story unfolded that culminated in a beautiful and fairy tale like life, no one could have predicted for him.
Fairy tales are fictional stories that children learn from a very young age, always culminating in a happily ever after finale that never seems to be true in real life.
But as Angel looked at his reflection, in the mirror at the crack of dawn with the sun rising with the promise of a new day, with a happy marriage and beautiful growing girl, in a paradise like setting which was now his home, he simply didn’t know what word to use to describe the life God allowed him to have, but a fairy tale one.
Seven was indeed a meaningful number for Angel, and just like his analogy deepened throughout the years, he couldn’t help but notice the changes in his face.
The face of a man, not a boy.
The face a surviving fighter, not a coward.
That face of happiness, not misery or regret.
One year was all it took for the new generation of the Olmos family to adjust to a new life and a new language.
The hardest part was the communication, but within months Angel and Virginia were talking Greek fluently to the point where it was getting easier to get around and make new friends.
Life has been good to us this past year, as if easily erasing the horrific memories of our final moments in New York, it seemed adaptation to a beautiful land was simpler than expected. Before we established ourselves here in Santorini, Virginia and I decided to learn a little more about Greek culture, and where better to begin than in Athens where the majestic monuments of the Gods are found.
The first monument we wanted to see was the Acropolis, and the amazing temple of Athena. Greeks had such strong beliefs in their Gods that Mythology has been portrayed like history itself. The thing is, Greeks do in fact believe that at one time there was a Mount Olympus and a Zeus and Pandora, bringer of all darkness, initiator of all life. Their beliefs are so strong that they commemorated them in stone through sculptural beauties that remain intact ranging long before the era of Christ. Living proof of their believes are temples in Athens that commemorate the Gods, and they strongly believed that if a person’s belief did not in one way or another please the Gods then that soul would be doomed.
Pretty much the way Christians see you if you don’t believe in Jesus or like Hindus do if you don’t believe in Krishna. Or how Buddhists view you if you fail to follow Buddha’s way of life, it seems like the image of God is fragmented and has always been so.
Yet with the course this life had taken for me I can attest there is only one God, and one God only, viewed in various forms, portrayed in various ways and hailed in many languages. In the end the universal language that all seem to have in common is the language of love.
The language of love is one that is in fact a very simple one, yet not so simple at the same time.
Angel thought about those seven minutes he was gone and how much love, freedom and peace he felt when his soul was detached from his body. It took him seven years to understand in flesh, what the soul was able to feel and experience in seven minutes.
He began to wonder of the connection between the body and the soul, he began to link how one works with or without the other, and he realized that the power of the soul is unmatchable, for after the physical plane there lies a spiritual plane in which all of what we’ve worked for in this life is reflected.
An unspoken language of emotions, of sensations and feelings that create a blissful like quality that many call Nirvana, and many call heaven.
Angel still did not know where it was that he went for those seven minutes, but looking at his reflection, at his muscular athletic body and his maturing facial structure he understands that that is all the body is, a vehicle and an instrument to carry on a mission so that the soul can be elevated.
He misguided his body to the point where the result was a viral deadly one, but though his body may not go on forever he knew, by his own experience that his soul would.
It took him seven years to detach himself completely from the material plane he lived in and finally ascend to a spiritual one.
Yes, seven is a meaningful number, for he understood after all this time the grand difference between a body and a soul, and how though interlinked, both are independent from one another disconnected to a certain degree, and that the actions of one affect the other and vice versa.
For many it takes a life time, for some not so much, for him…..it took seven years.