California, USA — Saturday, May 21st

Just a minute!

My whole life flashed before my eyes. There was plenty of time, on the way down, to review my dashed hopes and dreams... Life is so unfair!

But what's this? I'm still "alive" somehow... I'm still the same old me — I still have the same thoughts and feelings — except now I seem to be disembodied... Weird!

I was still trying to adjust when I was brought before some sort of judge (referred to as Lord Yamaraj)... I was terrified — he looked so stern! — but he was compassionate when he summed up my case:

"You feel that your life sentence was unfair, but there is no injustice in this court. Try to understand that you are imprisoned — you are born with a particular body in a specific environment — not for punishment, but for correction. There is no escape; my constables are everywhere. If you do try to escape, you just make it worse for yourself. As a deterrent to other prisoners, fugitives are punished.

"When you appeared before me at the end of your previous life, I sentenced you to sixty-eight years in the Earth wing of this prison. Since you tried to escape after serving only eighteen years, your next physical body will not be available for another fifty years. During this time, you will have to live in exile, as a ghost.

"As a ghost you will only be able to experience the world though your subtle, mental body, so you will suffer much more than the other inmates. Like them, you will experience hunger, thirst, desire, etc., but because you cannot enjoy these 'fleshy' pleasures without a physical body, your life will be miserable."

"But I didn't know..." I started to protest, but he cut me off.

"Ignorance of the law is no excuse!" he harrumphed. "Go now, and try to be a good prisoner this time. Model prisoners get time off for good behavior. The sooner you work off your karmic debt, the sooner you will be released."

...So here I am: still living in this world, but unable to participate in it. I wish I could warn others — Oh how I wish I could tell the hopeless and the desperate not to make the same ghastly mistake that I made! — but it's no use: nobody can hear me now...

Tags: Just a minute!

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Layout by iMonk — May 21st, 2011.