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Word Gems 

exploring self-realization, sacred personhood, and full humanity


 


Soulmate, Myself:
The Perfect Mate

Elizabeth and Robert

 


 

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The love-letters of Elizabeth Barrett (1806 - 1861) and Robert Browning (1812 - 1889)

 

A biographer notes: “Elizabeth Barrett was already thirty-eight and a famous poet when Robert Browning [age thirty-two, still an unknown, but destined to eclipse her fame] wrote to her that ‘he loved her poems and loved her’… Nearly six hundred letters would pass between them in the twenty months from his first enthusiastic letter written in January 1845 to their secret marriage September 1846.”

From their son, many years later: “Ever since my mother’s death these letters were kept by my father in a certain inlaid box, into which they exactly fitted, and where they have rested, letter beside letter, each in its consecutive order and numbered on the envelope by his own hand. My father destroyed all the rest of his correspondence, and not long before his death he said, referring to these letters: ‘There they are, do with them as you please when I am dead and gone!’"

 

Robert’s first letter, January 10, 1845, New Cross, Hatcham, Surry

I love your verses with all my heart, Miss Barrett … so into me it has gone, and part of me has it become, this great living poetry of yours, not a flower of which but took root and grew … but in this addressing myself to you – your own self, and for the first time, my feeling rises altogether. I do, as I say, love these books with all my heart – and I love you, too. Do you know I was once not very far from seeing – really seeing you? Mr. Kenyon [poet, John Kenyon, Robert’s friend, and distant cousin of Elizabeth] said to me one morning “Would you like to see Miss Barrett?” then he went to announce me, -- then he returned … you were too unwell, and now it is years ago…

 

Elizabeth’s first letter, January 11, 1845, 50 Wimpole Street

I thank you, dear Mr. Browning, from the bottom of my heart. You meant to give me pleasure by your letter – and even if the object had not been answered, I ought still to thank you. … For the rest [beyond the pleasure of meeting a fellow poet] you draw me on with your kindness. [Referring to herself as being pleased to receive his letter, she notes,] It is difficult to get rid of people when once you have given them too much pleasure…

 

Editor’s note: It is also difficult to truncate and abridge the content of these wonderful letters, as much of it, even the mundane, becomes a thing of beauty, so well expressed. I must offer an abbreviated version, however, lest I reprint thousands of pages here. You will want to read these letters in their entirety.

 

Is it indeed true that I was so near to the pleasure and honour of making your acquaintance? … what I lost by one chance I may recover by some future one. Winters shut me up [as her health was very delicate] as they do dormouse’s eyes; in the spring, we shall see … Mr. Kenyon often speaks of you … I am writing too much, -- and notwithstanding that I am writing too much, I will write of one thing more… while I live to follow this divine art of poetry, in proportion to my love for it and my devotion to it, I must be a devout student and admirer of your works. This is in my heart to say to you – and I say it.

 

Robert’s letter, January 13, 1845, New Cross, Hatcham, Surry

… your poetry must be, cannot but be, infinitely more to me than mine to you – for you do what I always wanted, hoped to do, and only now seem likely to do for the first time. You speak out, you, -- I only make men and women speak – give your truth broken out into prismatic hues, and fear the pure white light, even if it is in me, but I am going to try… You will never more, I hope, talk of “the honour of my acquaintance”, but I will joyfully wait for the delight of your friendship, and the spring…

 

Editor’s note: Notice how Robert creates distinction between the poet who merely puts words into the mouths of “men and women” and the higher-order poet who reveals her own deeper self through her works. Robert’s growing self awareness, in the presence of Elizabeth, reminds us of The Wedding Song’s “drawing life and giving it back again.” Also, a passing thought: as seems to be the case with many luminaries, Elizabeth and Robert had studied at least some Greek and Latin. And while not every student of such becomes a poet, it appears that current best educational standards are but a shadow of another day’s common fare. I’m wondering what I myself lost by suffering this deficit -- what insights into architectonic underpinnings of language escape those unschooled in the classical way? And if there is no value in the education of the ancients, as many harp today, where, then, are the newly-minted Abigail Adams and Elizabeth Barretts as the fruit of modern scaled-down pedagogy?

 

Elizabeth’s letter, January 15, 1845, 50 Wimpole Street

I did not talk of the “honour of your acquaintace” without a true sense of honour, indeed; but I shall willingly exchange it all … for the “delight of your friendship.”

 

Elizabeth’s letter, February 27, 1845, 50 Wimpole Street

I am delighted to hear all you say to me of … Carlyle… He fills the office of a poet … by analyzing humanity back into its elements, to the destruction of the conventions of the hour. That is – strictly speaking – the office of a poet, is it not?

 

Elizabeth’s letter, March 5, 1845, 50 Wimpole Street

… the earth looks brighter to me in proportion to my own deprivations… What we call Life is a condition of the soul, and the soul must improve in happiness and wisdom, except by it own fault. These tears in our eyes, these faintings of the flesh, will not hinder such improvement…

How kind you are! – how kindly and gently you speak to me! Some things you say are very touching, and some, surprising; and although I am aware that you unconsciously exaggerate what I can be to you, yet it is delightful to be broad awake and think of you as my friend.

 

Robert’s letter, March 12, 1845

You think – that I “unconsciously exaggerate what you are to me”. Now, you don’t know what that is, nor can I very well tell you, because the language with which I talk to myself of these matters is spiritual Attic [“a low decorative façade above the main story of the building”; that is, Robert is saying, rather than “exaggerate,” he can express, even to himself, only in a small way, what she means to him].

 

Elizabeth’s letter, March 20, 1845, 50 Wimpole Street

You seem to have drunken of the cup of life full, with the sun shining on it. I have lived only inwardly; or with sorrow, for a strong emotion. Before this seclusion of my illness, I was secluded still … I grew up in the country – had no social opportunities, had my heart in books and poetry … My sympathies drooped toward the ground like an untrained honeysuckle… It was a lonely life, growing green like the grass around it. Books and dreams are what I lived in… And so time passes and passed – and afterwards, when my illness came I seemed to stand at the edge of the world with all done … I turned to thinking with some bitterness that I had stood blind in the temple [of life] I was about to leave – that I had seen no Human nature, that my brothers and sisters of the earth were names to me, that I had beheld no great mountain or river, nothing in fact. I was a dying man who had not read Shakespeare and it was too late! … I am, in a manner, as a blind poet…  how willingly I would as a poet exchange some of this lumbering, ponderous, helpless knowledge of books, for some experience of life and man… But all grumbling is a vile thing. We should all thank God for our measures of life, and think them enough for each of us … what is to live? Not to eat and drink and breathe, -- but to feel the life in you down all the fibres of being, passionately and joyfully. … whenever I see a poem of mine in print … the reaction is most painful. The pleasure, the sense of power, without which I could not write a line, is gone in a moment; and nothing remains but disappointment and humiliation. I never wrote a poem which you could not persuade me to tear to pieces if you took me at the right moment! I have a seasonable humility, I do assure you.

 

Elizabeth’s letter, May 16, 1845

… if you care to come to see me you can come… And my sister will bring you upstairs to me; and we will talk; or you will talk; and I will try to be indulgent, and like me as well as you can.

 

[Robert made his first visit on May 21]

 

Editor’s note: In the following, Elizabeth makes reference to a letter from Robert which upset her. She sent it back to him and insisted that he destroy it. Apparently, Robert had spoken too freely and frankly of his love for his new friend.

 

Elizabeth’s letter, May 24, 1845

… you do not know what pain you give me for speaking so wildly… You have said some intemperate things … fancies, -- which you will not say over again, nor unsay, but forget at once, and for ever, having said at all; and which (so) shall die out between you and me alone, like a misprint between you and the printer… Now, if there should be one word of answer attempted to this; or of reference; I must not … I will not see you again

 

Editor’s note: Calm down, Elizabeth.

 

Elizabeth’s letter, May 25, 1845

I am quite as much ashamed of myself as I ought to be, which is not a little… we will shuffle the cards and take patience, and begin the game again, if you please…

 

Elizabeth’s letter, August 25, 1845

… five years ago I lost what I loved best in the world [her dear eldest brother Edward drowned in a boating accident]… once he held my hand, … how I remember! and said that he “loved me better than them all and that he would not leave me…” he said! how I remember that! And ten days from that day the boat had left the shore which never returned; never – and he had left me! gone! For three days we waited – and I hoped while I could – oh – that awful agony of three days! … I could not speak or shed a tear, but lay for weeks and months half conscious, half unconscious, with a wandering mind, and too near to God under the crushing of His hand, to pray at all… I have never said so much to a living being – I never could speak or write of it… I would have died ten times over for him… you will comprehend from what I have told you how the spring of life must have seemed to break with me then; and how natural it has been for me to loathe the living on – and to lose faith … to lose faith in myself … which I have done on some points utterly… forgive me this gloomy letter I half shrink from sending you, but will send.

 

Robert’s letter, August 27, 1845

I am most grateful, most grateful, dearest friend, for this admission, to participate, in any degree, in [your] feelings [of grief]. There is a better thing than being happy in your happiness; I feel, now that you teach me, it is so… I have many things … to say; will you write, if but a few lines… May God bless you, -- in what is past and to come! I pray that from my heart, being yours…

 

Elizabeth’s letter, August 30, 1845

[Elizabeth has not heard from him for three days and worries that somehow her “gloomy” letter has offended the man to whom she is becoming very attached.]

I come to ask you to be kind enough to write one word for me by some post tomorrow. Now remember … I am not asking for a letter – but for a word … or a line strictly speaking.

 

Robert’s letter, August 30, 1845

Can you understand me so, dearest friend, after all? Do you see me – when I am away, or with you – “taking offence” at words, “being vexed” at words, or deeds of yours… I believe in you, absolutely, utterly…

 

Editor’s note: A constant and recurring theme in Elizabeth’s letters is her sense of unworthiness to pursue relationship with Robert.

 

Robert’s letter, September 13, 1845

I have read your letter again and again… I love you as you now are, and would not remove one affection that is already part of you… I began to look into my own life, and study its end… and I know… that to make that life yours, and to increase it by union with yours, would render me supremely happy

 

Elizabeth’s letter, September 13, 1845

You see in me what is not… you overlook in me what is unsuitable to you… And so if you are wise and would be happy… you must leave me…

… my own father, if he knew that you had written to me so, and that I had answered you – so, even, would not forgive me at the end of ten years…

 

Editor’s note: Elizabeth’s father ruled over his children so severely that he forbade them to marry!

 

Elizabeth’s letter, September 18, 1845

That you should care at all for me has been a matter of unaffected wonder to me from the first hour until now… it would have been better for you if you had never known me…

 

Robert’s letter, September 25, 1845

… all our life is some form of religion, and all our action some belief… I do think you are called upon to do your duty to yourself; that is, to God in the end. Your own reason should examine the whole matter in dispute by every light… Now while I dream, let me once dream! I would marry you now and thus – I would come when you let me, and go when you bade me – I would be no more than one of your brothers… [or] sitting simply by you for an hour every day… [I choose this dream] rather than any other… I am able to form for this world, or any world I know…

 

Elizabeth’s letter, September 27, 1845

I am not made of such clay as to admit… [concerning your] noble extravagances… that your words in this letter have done me more good and made me happy… that to receive such a proof of attachment from you, not only overpowers every present evil, but seems to me a full and abundant amends for the merely personal sufferings of my whole life… And now listen to me in turn. You have touched me more profoundly than I thought even you could have touched me… Henceforward I am yours for everything but to do you harm… [And now] a promise goes to you [that] none, except God and your will, shall interpose between you and me

 

 

Elizabeth’s letter, November 15, 1845

Shall I tell you… The first moments in which I seemed to admit to myself in a flash of lightning the possibility of your affection for me being more than dreamwork… the first moment was that when you intimated (as you have done since repeatedly) that you cared for me not for a reason, but because you cared for me. Now such a “parceque” [a “because”] which reasonable people would take to be irrational, was just the only one fitted to the uses of my understanding on the particular question we were upon… just the “woman’s reason” suitable to the woman… for… if so, that it was altogether unanswerable… do you see? If a fact includes its own cause… why there it stands for ever – one of the “earth’s immortalities” – as long as it includes it.

 

Editor's note: This principle of "you must love me not for a reason" ranks among the most important among rubrics of natural law, and most foundational to the eternal marriage. Elizabeth is channeling high-grade wisdom here, indeed. It is very likely that the Troubadour Guides served as her muse. To state things plainly, regarding "not for a reason," if you marry someone because he likes your pretty face, well guess what happens when you lose your beauty, or when he finds a prettier face! Elizabeth was not in robust health, and was not the beauty-queen type, but that meant nothing to Robert.

 

And when unreasonableness [a sardonic reference; “unreasonableness” in the sense that true love is not founded upon ostensible reason, the "perfect resume"] stands for a reason, it is a promising state of things… I do remember how, years ago, when talking the foolishness which women will talk when they are by themselves, and not forced to be sensible… one of my friends [in debating the question “how to win a man’s love”] thought it “safest to begin with a little aversion”…

Editor’s note: Elizabeth once again invokes sardonicism, alluding to a comment by Mrs. Malaprop (Richard Brinsley Sheridan (1751-1816), “The Rivals”), famous for her comical, inadvertent misplacement of terms. It is likely that Mrs. Malaprop meant to say, “It’s safest to begin” society’s mating ritual “with a little subversion,” which sweet disingenuity, a calculated “giving and receiving,” Kairissi and Elenchus discussed at length in “The Wedding Song.”

… and another [friend thought it] wisest to begin with a great deal of esteem [i.e., flattery], and how the best attachments were produced so and so… [and] I took it into my head to say that the best [way to win a man] was where there was no cause at all for it, and the more wholly unreasonable [so to speak], the better still; that the motive should lie in the feeling itself and not in the object of it… Whereupon everybody laughed, and someone thought it affected of me [“you’re putting us on”] and no true opinion [of mine], and others said plainly that it was immoral, and somebody else hoped, in a sarcasm [taunt], that I [should] act out my theory for the advantage of the world. To which I replied quite gravely that I had not virtue enough – and so people laughed as it is fair to laugh when other people are esteemed to talk nonsense. And all this came back to me in the south wind of your “parceque”…

 

Robert’s letter, September 25, 1845

I never in my life kept a journal, a register of sights, or fancies, or feelings – But I have, from the first, recorded the date and the duration of every visit to you; the number of minutes you have given me… [For] love, what is it all, this love for you, but an earnest desiring to include you in myself… to feel you in my very heart and hold you there for ever, through all chance and earthly changes…

I hoard up your words … and [become exasperated] at you when I see a line blotted out, a second-thoughted finger-tip rapidly put forth upon one of my gold pieces!

 

Editor’s note: Robert’s “gold pieces” are Elizabeth’s every word for him; so much so that he cannot bear even to see a correction in her letter, a “blotting out” of words, lest he be deprived even of her slips of penmanship.

 

Elizabeth’s letter, December 13, 1845

I have been subject to the too unreasonable fear which rises as my spirits fall, that your happiness might suffer in the end through your having known me

 

Editor’s note: Like an undulating sine-wave, Elizabeth’s entrenched sense of unworthiness would flare up – fruit, no doubt, of physical incapacity and patriarchal disapproval. This caused Robert much grief.

 

Elizabeth’s letter, December 20, 1845

Dearest, you know how to say what makes me happiest… [however] I simply understand you are my happiness, and that therefore you could not make another happiness for me, such as would be worth having – not even you! … Talking of happiness – shall I tell you? Promise not to be angry and I will tell you. I have thought sometimes that, if I considered myself wholly, I should choose to die this winter – now – before I had disappointed you in anything. But… I do not choose it. I cannot choose to give you any pain,. a less evil, than what may follow… if I should prove the burden of your life

 

Elizabeth’s letter, December 24, 1845

People used to say to me, “You expect too much – you are too romantic.” And my answer always was that “I could not expect too much when I expected nothing at all”… for I never thought that anyone whom I could love [might love me]… And now when it comes in a miracle, you wonder at me for looking twice, thrice, four times, to see if it comes… [as] illusion – illusion for you, -- illusion for me as a consequence…

It is true of me – very true – that I have not a high appreciation of what passes in the world… under the name of love; and that a distrust of the thing had grown to be a habit of mind with me when I knew you first. It has appeared to me, through all the seclusion of my life and the narrow experience it admitted of, that in nothing men – and women too – were so apt to mistake their own feelings, as in this one thing.

Putting falseness [dishonest role-playing in the mating game] quite on one side… an honest mistaking of feeling appears wonderfully common, and no mistake has such frightful results – none can… a mistake [in judgment regarding a potential mate] may come from any blind impulse – oh, when I look at the histories of my own female friends – to go no step further! And if it is true of the women, what must the other side be? To see the marriages which are made every day! worse than solitudes and more desolate!

In the case of the two happiest [couples] I ever knew, one of the husbands said in confidence to a brother of mine… that he had ruined his prospects [of happiness] by marrying”; and the other said… at the very moment of professing an extraordinary happiness, “But I should have done as well if I had not married her.”

 

Editor’s note: Elizabeth’s severely honest assessment of John-and-Mary unions of this world allows her an uncommon and penetrating wisdom among the great romantic poets of history. Notice the tragedy of her two examples of the “happy marriage” which is no happiness at all.

 

Then for the falseness [the outright swindlers in the mating game] – the first time I ever, in my own experience, heard that word [“love”] which rhymes to glove and comes off as easily

 

Editor’s note: “… and comes off as easily.” Here the great English poetess offers her own version of the “love with a nasty habit of disappearing overnight.”

 

It was from a man of whose attentions to another woman I was at that time her confidante. I was bound so to silence for her sake, that I could not even speak the scorn that was in me [as she perceived that this man did not truly love her friend] – and in fact my uppermost feeling was a sort of horror – a terror – for I was very young then… The falseness and the calculations! …

 

Elizabeth’s letter, January 10, 1846

Do you know… I have been… thinking of you so much, thinking of only you – which is too much, perhaps. Shall I tell you?

 

Editor’s note: We know there is such a thing as becoming obsessively compulsive, a mesmerized infatuation, centered in another human being. But there is a natural and right aspect of this focalization, and we see it here in Elizabeth. Those who’ve never experienced mature love lump all intense focus in the category of “obsessive compulsion,” but this is gross error. One is drawn to the Beloved so forcibly – as Silver Birch says, with an attraction “so overwhelming, so magnetic” – as to inspire song-lyrics such as “forgive me for wanting you so.”

 

It seems to me, to myself, that no man was to any woman what you are to me – the fullness must be in proportion, you know, to the vacancy… and only I know what was behind – the long wilderness without the blossoming rose… and the capacity for happiness, like a black gaping hole, before this silver flooding.

 

Editor’s note: We gasp in astonishment at the beauty of The Great Poetess’s words! She believes that the intensity of her love for Robert has been previously unknown in history. I suggest that it is the destiny of every Twin Soul to feel such particularized and extreme delight toward his or her mate: “No one has ever loved another as much as I love you!” It is a universal proclamation, and it will true for each sacred couple – we shall all yet perceive the magnitude of this singular love.

 

Is it wonderful that I should stand as in a dream, and disbelieve – not you – but my own fate? Was ever anyone taken from a lampless dungeon and placed upon the pinnacle of a mountain, without the head turning around and the heart turning faint, as mine do?

 

Editor’s note: The “lampless dungeon.” How moving are these similitudes of Elizabeth’s loveless wilderness years. This time of aloneness occurs by design, I believe. The Troubadour Guides allow and arrange, for each of us, a time of romantic desolation, so severe that all hope of love seems utterly lost, that we might yet, all the more, appreciate a future reunion with a Beloved, that placement “upon a pinnacle of a mountain.” Elizabeth speaks of “as in a dream.” The long loveless years become “an endless nightmare” of hopeless prospect for love; but the unexpected coming of the Beloved, too, appears as a dream, one too good to be true, and far too marvelous to be real. “It can’t be true,” it will seem.

 

And you love me more, you say! – Shall I thank you or God? Both – indeed – and there is no possible return from me [in terms of repayment for gift] to either of you! I thank you as the unworthy may … and as we all thank God. How shall I ever prove what my heart is to you? how will you ever see it as I feel it? I ask myself in vain. Have so much faith in me, my only beloved, as to use me simply for your own advantage and happiness…

 

 

Robert’s letter, January 12, 1846

Keats speaks of “Beauty, that must die – and Joy whose hand is ever at his lips, bidding farewell!” … [But] There is a Beauty that will not die, a Joy that bids no farewell, dear dearest eyes that will love for ever! …

See, love, -- a year has gone by – we were in one relation when you wrote at the end of a letter “Do not say I do not tire you” (by writing) – “I am sure I do.” A year has gone by – Did you tire me then? … [imagine] we are married, and my arms are round you, and my face touches yours, and I am asking, “Were you not to me, in that dim beginning of 1846, a joy behind all joys, a life added to and transforming mine, the good I choose from all the possible gifts from God on this earth…

 

 

Robert’s letter, January 15, 1846

… this living without you is too tormenting now. So begin thinking, -- as for Spring, as for a New Year, as for a new life…

 

Elizabeth’s letter, January 17, 1846

Ever dearest – how you can write touching things to me; and how my whole being vibrates, as a string, to these! … [Elizabeth worries that her father will discover these letters and bar Robert from her house and her life.] I will take courage to tell you that my sisters know… I could not continue to conceal from them what they had under their eyes… I will do for you what you please and as you please to have it done [to soon marry] …

 

Elizabeth’s letter, January 17, 1846

[Concerning her father] he would rather see me dead at his foot than [allow me to marry and leave the house]…

Love is so much to me naturally – it is, to all women!

 

Editor’s note: The great Spirit Guides concur and speak of Woman as Love Personified. It is her domain, even more than her husband’s.

 

Robert’s letter, January 28, 1846

My only good in this world – that against which all the world goes for nothing – is to spend my life with you, and to be yours… [and if Elizabeth’s frail health were to prevent this union of love, then] I wait till life ends with both of us…

 

Elizabeth’s letter, January 31, 1846

[Regarding their plans to secretly marry and to escape to another country, to Italy, Elizabeth now defers to Robert] I have decided to let it be as you shall choose… I believe and trust in all your words

 

Editor’s note: Not unlike Kairissi, Elizabeth, as we have seen in the last year, is more than a little feisty and flamboyant by nature. She is not, and would never be, anyone’s door-mat; and her true mate would be the first to encourage this spirited sense of self-worth. But now we see a change, a redirectioning, of Elizabeth’s mind and heart. She will let Robert take charge of planning and strategy to make their wishes come to fruition. She desires Robert to lead in this area not because she has nothing worthwhile to suggest – as she will continue to suggest – but she intuitively knows and senses that “planning a war” is not her forte. She is, and has admitted to, Love Personified as her proper role; but now she defers to Robert in his own “default setting” as Wisdom Personified. Intuitively, and though she will continue to “suggest,” she realizes her best course and chance for success is to rely on his strength in these matters. The great Spirit Guides often speak of these two primary dispositions of Woman and Man, as Love and Wisdom.

Editor’s note: A small side-bar indicator of essential difference between Woman and Man: Elizabeth’s sisters immediately, on their unfailing radar screens, perceive her new status as another’s Beloved; her brothers, however, of another species, remain oblivious and, likely, would have no clue until receiving a postcard from Italy. (smile)

 

Robert’s letter, February 23, 1846

Dear, dear heart of my heart, life of my life… care also for the life beyond [where I intend to live with and love you forever]…

 

Editor’s note: The Brownings, maybe especially Elizabeth, were well acquainted with information about Summerland. In one of her writings, she refers to herself and like-minded ones as "we Swedenborgians." Swedenborg influenced generations of searching spirits, including the intelligentsia of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. When we find Elizabeth taking high flight with, "I love thee with the breath, Smiles, tears, of all my life! – and, if God choose, I shall but love thee better after death," we may rightly presume that such romantic sentiment, impinging upon the afterlife, was engendered by the teachings of Swedenborg.

 

Elizabeth’s letter, February 24, 1846

I am living for you now. And before I knew you, what was I and where? What was the world to me … and the meaning of life? … I surprised everybody in this house [last year] by consenting to see you. Then, when you came, you never went away… Do you know that … I was frightened of you? … I felt as if you had a power over me and [you] meant to use it, and that I could not breathe or speak very differently from what you chose to make me. As to my thoughts … you read them as you read the newspaper – examined them, and fastened them down writhing under your long entomological pins – ah, do you remember the entomology of it all?

 

Editor’s note: Elizabeth artfully plays with words again. She’d been awed by Robert’s ability to “read her”; her private thoughts were no longer safely sequestered from public view, as he’d broken through to secret and long-held yearnings and hopes; moreover, had analyzed them, had pinned them to a board, like mounting a butterfly [entomology] for display.

 

But the power was used upon me – and I never doubted that… I saw … very early … that you had come here to love whomever you should find… [and my early attempts at self-effacement and deflecting your love] had just operated in making you more determined [to reach me]… But I may say before God and you, that of all the events of my life, inclusive of its afflictions, nothing has humbled me so much as your love… [which] has been to me like God’s own love, which makes the receivers of it kneelers.

 

Editor’s note: At this stage of Elizabeth’s realization of love’s marvel, almost everything she says is worthy of immortal preservation. Her love for and from Robert is now perceived to be “like God’s own love.” Troubadour Spirit-Guide Margaret said the same. True romance is sacred, but not in the ordinary sense of being good or pleasant; rather, true love directly serves as catalyst to spiritual evolvement. Look at how sacred love is changing Elizabeth! – this is The Wedding Song’s “drawing life and giving it back again”! Oftentimes, in my writings, I have stated that Female cannot become Woman until she finds that true one who will love her unreservedly. We are all damaged by unlove in this world, but, for Elizabeth, maybe a little more with her abusive father who had convinced his daughter that she was not worthy to be cherished and treasured by anyone. And so, naturally, when Robert professed to her a high-grade love of ultra-cherishing, she became frightened, angry, and threw wild words at him, so unsettling was his assertion to her life-paradigm. We might chuckle at Elizabeth’s assessment of Robert: “he had a power over me and I knew that he intended to use it.” People come and go in life, but if it is our lot to meet the Beloved while still upon Earth, it will not be a small event, hidden in a corner. It will rock your world and you will never be the same again. Not only does he (like the Troubadour) "remain," but he comes bearing gifts – gifts of cherishing, treasuring, unconditional love; which, if heretofore utterly unknown, might be resisted. And, if so, the Beloved will then enter a phase of The Wedding Song’s “sacred combat.” He will not allow her to destroy herself in self-loathing and self-condemnation. We are accustomed to seeing people leave, to come and go. But the Beloved will not leave. He may be forced into strategic retreat if Elizabeth, early on, throws a fit; he may be strategically out of sight for a time, but, “rest assured,” he is not gone. He senses the Beloved's energy across the miles that separate; he “reads” her as today’s newspaper. Wisdom Personified is well capable of “planning wars” to rescue his Love from draconian family government; but, if need be, he is just as skilful in planning “combat missions” against his Beloved’s egoic self. No one would question Love’s domain as wife and mother; she rules the house of every healthy family, and everyone under roof knows this; but, also, do not doubt the efficaciousness of his abilities, within his own purview of authority, especially when pressed into war in service of the only one he loves. Elizabeth frankly admitted, “I was afraid of him” in his determination to reach her. She had reason to be afraid. As Robert flatly stated, “if I can’t be with you in this life, I will find you in the next.” This is not over.

 

Elizabeth’s letter, March 4, 1846

… dearest dearest… where are you? – why in the very deepest of my soul – wherever in it is the fountain head of loving! beloved, there you are!

 

Editor’s note: We began with “dear,” but soon traded for “dearest,” and then superseded by “dear dearest,” but now crowned with “dearest dearest.” (smile)

 

Robert’s letter, April 10, 1846

Oh, dearest, let us marry soon, very soon, and end all this! … Now kiss me, my best-dearest beloved… let it end soon, come, dearest life of my life, light of my soul, heart’s joy of my heart!

 

Elizabeth’s letter, April 13, 1846

Love me, beloved … do not leave off to see if I deserve it. I am at least (which is at most) Your very own…

 

Robert’s letter, May 2, 1846

Yes – the letter is here at last – I was waiting: now to read; no, kissing it comes first…

 

Elizabeth’s letter, May 6, 1846

Mrs. Jameson [visited me and said] earnestly … said to me the other day … that love was only “magnetism.” And I say in my heart, that, magnet or no magnet, I have been drawn back to life by your means and for you… No other could have done this for me – it was not possible, except by you.

 

Elizabeth’s letter, May 7, 1846

[Miss Bayley visited me and] told me with a frankness that she was a materialist of the strictest order, and believed in no soul and no future state. In the face of those conclusions, she said, she was calm and resigned. It is more than I could be, I confessed. My whole nature would cry aloud against that most pitiful result of the struggle here – a wrestling only for dust, and not for the crown. What a resistless melancholy would fall upon me if I had such thoughts! – and what a dreadful indifference. All grief, to have itself to end in! – all joy, to based on nothingness! – all love, to feel eternal separation under and over it! I should not have strength to love you, I think, if I had such a miserable creed. And for life itself … would it be worth holding on such terms … with our blind Ideals making mocks and mows at us wherever we turned? A game to throw up, this life would be, as not worth playing to the end!

 

Elizabeth’s letter, May 12, 1846

[She recounts earlier in the day a walk in the park] … and I felt joyful enough for the moment to look round for you, as for the cause [of this glorious day]. It seemed illogical, not to see you close by. And you were not far after all, if thoughts count as bringers near. Dearest, we shall walk together under the trees someday!

 

Elizabeth’s letter, May 13, 1846

[Mrs. Jameson visited me again and spoke of you in complimenting terms] How are such things to be borne, do you think [as she attempted to feign indifference] when people are not made of marble? But I took a long breath, and held my mask on with both hands

 

Elizabeth’s letter, May 15, 1846

[She speaks of her father] If he had let me I should have loved him out of a heart altogether open to him. It is not my fault that would not let me. Now it is too late – I am not his nor my own, any more

 

Robert’s letter, May 19, 1846

[He speaks of fame and ambition; he wishes her to know that] I did turn from them [all the world] to you

 

Elizabeth’s letter, May 20, 1846

[Now] while the heart beats, which beats for you… For my life, it is yours, as this year has been yours. But how can it make me happy, such a thing as my life? There, I wonder still. It never made me happy, without you!

 

Editor’s note: Lovers seem compelled to say, “I love you more than my own life.” Elizabeth tells us why.

 

Elizabeth’s letter, June 4, 1846

I shudder to look back to the days when you were not for me. Was ever life so like death before?

 

Elizabeth’s letter, June 10, 1846

Best, dearest beloved… I will accede to whatever you shall choose – so think for both of us. You know more of the world and have more practical sense than I

 

Elizabeth’s letter, June 19, 1846

I lift up my heart to say… How happy I ought to be… and am… with your thoughts all round me… Let them call me your very own…

 

Elizabeth’s letter, July 22, 1846

Does not Solomon say that “there is a time to read what is written.” If he doesn’t, he ought.

 

Editor’s note: Elizabeth makes me laugh.

 

Elizabeth’s letter, July 30, 1846

I have none in the world who will hold me to make me live in it, except only you. I have come back for you alone… at your voice and because you have use for me… I think [not] too much of what people will say… “People” did not make me live for them. I am not theirs but yours

 

Robert’s letter, August 12, 1846

How strange it will be to have no more letters!

 

Elizabeth’s letter, August 12, 1846

I only love you today – that is, I love you and do nothing more.

 

Elizabeth’s letter, August 17, 1846

I am happy by you… the greatest proof of love I could give you, is to be happy because of you… You have lifted my very soul up into the light of your soul, and I am not ever likely to mistake it for common daylight.

 

Editor’s note: "common daylight" -- What a beautiful metaphor and insight. They keep coming and coming from Elizabeth.

 

Elizabeth’s letter, August 22, 1846

As long as you choose to have me, my beloved, I have chosen – I am yours already…

 

Robert’s letter, September 10, 1846, Thursday morning

[If we do not marry immediately, our chances will be gone] for another year. – the misery! We must be married directly and go to Italy. I will go for a license today and we can be married on Saturday… I have not a minute to spare for the post.

Elizabeth’s letter, September 11, 1846

Dear, dearest, take care and keep yourself unhurt and calm. I shall not fail to you – I do not, I will not. I will act by your decision, and I wish you to decide. I cannot write, I am so tired, having been long out. Will not this dream break on a sudden? Now is the moment of the breaking of it, surely. But come tomorrow, come. Almost everybody is to be away … at a picnic, and we shall be free on all sides.

 

Elizabeth’s letter, September 14, 1846, Sunday

[Having married the previous day, but with their ship not yet embarking, Elizabeth returns to her father’s house for a few more days, playing the role of the unmarried]

I was yours rather by right than by gift (yet by gift also, my beloved!); for what you have saved and renewed is surely yours. All that I am, I owe you… You know this well. Even as I, from the beginning, knew that I had no power against you or… that, if I had, it was for your sake…

 

Editor’s note: Another marvelous perception by Elizabeth into the “natural law” of true love. The great Spirit Guides speak of how destined lovers become virtual “saviors” to each other, in that, they help each other to grow spiritually. There is one person, only one, in the universe, who can reach you so deeply, and therefore teach you, that this sacred Beloved might claim you, as Elizabeth said, “by right.” In other words, if he is the only one who can offer you sufficient reason to continue living, having experienced the “lampless dungeon” of a loveless existence, then you belong to him, and to no other; as he surrenders equal right to you. "All that I am I owe to you," is the prayer each whispers to the other.

 

I sit in a dream… I cannot believe or understand! … I feel happy and exulting to belong to you, past every opposition, out of sight of every will of man – none can put us asunder, now, at least. I have a right now to openly love you, and to hear other people call it a duty when I do…

I hate so to have to take off the ring! [to maintain the charade a while longer]

 

Elizabeth’s letter, September 15, 1846,  

Ah, poor Papa… he will be angry – he will cast me off as far from him. Well – there is no comfort in such thoughts… Once I heard of his saying of me that I was “the purest woman he ever knew” – which made me smile at the moment, or laugh, I believe, outright, because I understood perfectly what he meant by that – viz – that I had not troubled him with the iniquity of love affairs, or any impropriety of seeming to think about being married. But now the whole [female] sex will go down with me to the perdition of faith in any of us. See the effect of my wickedness! – “Those women!” … He will wish that I had died years ago.

 

Editor’s note: Elizabeth hoped that her father might be reconciled in time. This hope proved vain. Papa Barrett would not agree to see her again, with all of her petitioning letters returned to sender.

 

Elizabeth’s letter, the final letter, September 18, 1846, Friday evening, before ship’s departure

By tomorrow at this time, I shall have you only to love me – my beloved! You only! As if one said God only! And we shall have Him beside, I pray of Him…

Is this my last letter to you, ever dearest? …

Do you pray for me tonight, Robert? Pray for me, and love me, that I may have courage, feeling both…

[a postscript] … I begin to think that none are so bold as the timid, when they are fairly roused.

Editor’s note: The frail Elizabeth and her Robert would enjoy 15 years of marriage. She would die in her lover’s arms.

 

 

 

Kairissi. I feel so overwhelmed by the wisdom of Elizabeth and Robert – especially, Elizabeth. Her clear-sightedness into the nature of things, the meaning of life and love, is astonishing.

Elenchus. I will tell you this. There are many good sources of information on the eternal marriage, but – if all we had to go on were these letters, we’d be in good shape to know what’s real and make an easy transition to Summerland.

K. There are so many excellent, but heavy, points she makes, that it becomes rather oppressive if taken all at once. This is no "fast food" literature, but “dining” at leisure, to be digested slowly.

E. We could write volumes expounding on their deep insights.

K. Let’s talk about a single favorite item. Tell me what ranks as your number one.

E. That’s really hard; so many good ones – but if I must choose, I think it needs to be the “not for a reason” principle. It just turns John-and-Mary philosophy on its head; it’s contrary to everything that the world swears by with its mating rituals.

K. And that’s why the ladies at the tea-party laughed-to-scorn Elizabeth when she said “no reason” is the best way to win a man.

E. That ganging up on her was pretty ridiculous – the inmates running the asylum.

K. (softly laughing)

E. (small smile) Here they’re talking to one of England’s very greatest poets, one of wisest women of history, and she gets the guffaw-treatment.

K. (small smile) The really inane part was when one of the jokers said, “Well then, why don’t just go out and try this and report back to us and the whole world, and tell us how that no-reason thing's workin’ out for ya."

E. (laughing)

K. (softly laughing) And she’d say, “Quite well, actually. I just married Robert Browning -- maybe you’ve heard of him, and if you haven’t, you will -- and I didn’t even have to take the e-harmony quiz.”

E. (laughing)

K. (small smile) It is funny; but, Babe, we all know that when people want a mate, they go hunting for the “best resume.”

E. It’s all about “for a reason.” It’s Elizabeth’s “parceque” – the “because.”

K. And it's negotiated for so intensely. It’s the “buying and selling,” the “giving and receiving,” warning in The Wedding Song.

E. Ok, let me play “devil’s advocate” here, and so tell me about this. Some people might say that Robert did choose Elizabeth “for a reason.” After all, Robert was in process of becoming a great English poet – that’s not a small thing. And whom does he choose? Elizabeth Barrett -- who was already famous as a poet when he met her and would be a suitable companion for him.

K. It’s a fair question. We are tempted to ask, would Robert have been as crazy for Elizabeth had she been a scullery maid?

E. Yeah, but it’s almost not being fair to ask this – lots of red warning-lights are flashing now.

K. What do you see?

E. Well, if they are Twins, their bond and sense of oneness will be founded upon a deep, hidden similarity. The street-wisdom of “opposites attract” is just a cruel joke.

K. If “opposites attract” then the scullery maid should be quite opposite enough to make the perfect marriage for Robert. And so, you’re saying that, if they’re Twins, and since he’s an ace poet, she will be too.

E. Not exactly. The sacred similarity runs deeper than that. The Sacred Beloved is a “soul-mate,” not primarily a “flesh-mate,” and not even necessarily a “similar-interest-mate.” We know that Twins might flunk the “e-harmony” questionnaire.

K. So, could Robert’s true one actually be a scullery maid?

E. Theoretically, yes. I think the question would be, why is she a scullery maid? Maybe she doesn’t have the money, or maybe she grew up in a poor family. But her spirit and hidden soul-energy will mirror Robert’s. Remember how the Guides say that the development of Twins runs on a somewhat parallel course? If she’s temporarily a scullery maid by necessity, and if, in fact, she is Robert’s true girl, then, in her heart-of-hearts, she’ll be dreaming of creating something beautiful, and becoming an artist of some sort.

K. Meaning, she might not care to be the writer that Robert is, but she maybe she’d like to work with music, or painting, or the like. The similarity would manifest on a deeper level -- an intense love of beauty and meaning. So, Dear, summarize for us how all this relates to the “not for a reason” principle.

E. I’m thinking of a phrase Elizabeth used – “I’m vibrating like a string.” On a deeper level, each true lover will share a similar harmony of vibrational essence. This will be what Elizabeth called the “unreasonable” reason for love and marriage; that is, it’s invisible to others. Their in-phase hidden harmony, depending on life-circumstance, might not immediately result in tangible examples of similarity. Our world is famous for denying people opportunity to experience what they really desire.

K. Dear, it’s sort of like a tuning fork. You can calibrate it to vibrate when acoustically touched by one particular wave-form. You could have a room full of tuning forks, a thousand of them, but if only two of them are equally calibrated, a particular pitched sound will affect only those two and leave the other 998 silent.

 

 

E. I think that’s an excellent example of the hidden similarity and being attracted to someone “not for a reason.” There’d be no obvious surface-reason why just the two forks were vibrating together.

K. It would appear to be quite “unreasonable.”

E. Very much so; especially, when one of the forks takes the outer appearance of a scullery maid, but in fact has the heart of an artist.

K. We cannot know if the bond between Elizabeth and Robert is an eternal one, but, certainly, they experienced one of Jackson Davis’s higher-order levels of marriage.

E. Krissi, take your own turn now and choose – what will you particularly remember about the Brownings?

K. It’s somewhat of an easy choice for me. I say this in terms of anomaly, a stark contrast with the rest. I’m referring to Elizabeth’s early reaction to Robert’s profession of love.

E. You speak of the author’s “Calm down, Elizabeth.”

K. Consider the great disconnect. We agree that Elizabeth is a contender for the “Wisest Woman of History Award” – and yet look how easily she is overthrown, turns into some kind of maniac, by apparently nothing.

E. And what was Robert’s unpardonable sin? – he told her that he loved her, and wanted her, in no uncertain terms.

K. She became frightened; she couldn’t handle that, flew into a rage, and demanded that he destroy the criminal letter:

… you do not know what pain you give me for speaking so wildly… You have said some intemperate things … fancies, -- which you will not say over again, nor unsay, but forget at once, and for ever, having said at all; and which (so) shall die out between you and me alone, like a misprint between you and the printer… Now, if there should be one word of answer attempted to this; or of reference; I must not … I will not see you again…

E. I’d like your perspective on this – why is Elizabeth so angry?

K. I know exactly what's going on. She’d been badly hurt, and this, on a deep level of being. And even though she’s a contender for the “Wisest Woman of History Award,” there are “lampless dungeons,” locked prison cells, within Elizabeth’s heart and mind which she avoids, rarely visits, and will not even admit to exist. A hidden part of her writhes in self-loathing and self-condemnation.

E. (silence)

K. Most times, she’s civil, the picture of the gracious, educated, cultured, and artistic woman; but, as Elvis, sang, “that was just a lie.” Underneath the sophisticated veneer, we find a terror-stricken little girl, huddling in the dark. When the “horror movies begin to play in her head,” she turns into a Jekyll-and-Hyde creature. You wouldn’t even know her during those times.

E. What’s your etiology on this?

K. It’s not so uncommon. Remember what Lateece told us? A little girl is designed to grow up into a universal expression of Beauty and Loveliness, a veritable Love Personified. But if that “seed of greatness” is thwarted and perverted, when the twig is bent in untoward direction, she will rage and lash out at this interference with her “made in the image” destiny.

E. Say more on this.

K. When little girls are taught to doubt themselves, think ill of themselves, by dark authority-figures in their lives, the result is deep-seated anger and even rage. Pathological self-evaluation is typically encouraged by oppressive religion with its fear-and-guilt inducing mind-control tactics. There was some of that in Elizabeth’s life. But her primary nemesis was that of her own father’s teaching. After many years of “nice girls don’t,” she’d accepted the propaganda, had convinced herself that she was no good, not able, and that no man could ever love her. Let’s not forget that Elizabeth's own words concerning how depressing this was for her: so dark a dystopian world had Church and Papa created for her, that, in her frankest moments with Robert, she admitted to – before his unexpected coming -- suicidal thoughts.

E. And so when Robert professed “wild words” of wanting her so much, she became frightened and counted his effusiveness as “heresy,” according to what she had accepted as truth, her innate unworthiness, as preached by the devilish authority-figures in her life.

K. Without a doubt, this is correct. In the beginning, she struggled to accept the fact that someone might actually consider her worthy to be utterly cherished, treasured, and valued – and this, so shocking to her, not for any “reason,” but simply because she was alive. Eventually, Robert wore down her resistence with positive affirmations and finally she began to believe in herself.

E. In Robert, the Spirit Guides’ teaching comes boldly and brilliantly to the fore – the True Mate becomes salvation for his Beloved!

K. Robert shattered all of the “infallible doctrines” of oppressive authority beseiging her. He believed in her. And he would not allow anyone to speak against her; especially, herself. This frightened her. Her hellish world was pulled down by Robert’s insistent love. She trembled before the Lover who “had a power over me – and I knew he intended to use it!”

E. Robert wouldn’t give up. He told her that he would work toward their union, whether in this life or the next. She had reason to be “afraid” of this kind of unremitting, unyielding declaration for her highest and best; she well sensed that his love, ready or not, would mold her into something better; and she had no power to stop this.

K. Writers are often hermit-like. They tend not to like “the bright lights” because that’s not where the insights come from. So it was with Robert. And yet true love demanded that he step outside of himself, enter a world of action, and engage in “sacred combat” with a Beloved who could not love herself. How strange! The peace-loving writer was forced to become a war-planning General!

E. Your metaphor is not so far-fetched. He virtually engineered a dramatic “rescue raid” to free Elizabeth from her own house!

K. (sighing) True love and marriage, Darling Dear, before they’re done with us – though we ever long for peace and revel in the aesthetic -- may yet make “SEAL commandos” of us all.

E. Thank you, Baby Doll. If I may, as postscript, I’d just like to add one more small item. I say “small” as Elizabeth did not linger here but yet could easily be ranked as one of her more notable thoughts.

K. Please, Dear.

E. In my own words, she said that the one who saves you, changes you, holds title-deed to you; in other words, he owns you. He is the Pygmalion; she is the modelling clay. Even more, the fact that he does, and is able to, refashion his Beloved, and does bring out her best, is proof, before heaven and earth, that he is her authentic, eternal mate.

K. (sighing) That is so beautiful, Dear. We are certain that Elizabeth, without Robert’s vivifying touch, would have lived out, in her father’s house, her remaining bitter days with suppressed anger. But this was not the real Elizabeth; the sometimes-curmudgeon Elizabeth was not the real Elizabeth. No one could help her, reach her, until Robert came. Moreover, he judged her to be altogether “perfect,” with no flaw at all. What kind of pink-cloud idealization is this? It is the ultimate-reality view of the True One. Only he will possess such x-ray vision – and by his sacred perspicacity Robert revealed himself to be Elizabeth’s long-awaited sacred eternal lover.

E. The term, “owning” another, many would shrink from.

K. In our world it has a negative connotation; the “buying a selling” negotiations of John and Mary dictate that neither would desire to lose too much control. But within the realm of sacred Twin romance, there is no suggestion of any servitude. Paradoxically, the “owning” known by Twins heralds a day of liberation. Just ask Elizabeth. We all long to become property interest of one, a true one, who will love us more than life itself, and, in so doing, free and set-to-wing the caged song-bird.

E. (sighing) Pygmalion’s statue of the beautiful maiden was brought to life by his prayer to Aphrodite.

K. (softly) As Elizabeth rightly discerned, Robert, too, became a “kneeler” in her presence -- she, his personal beatific vision.

 

K. Darling, I thought we had finished our discussion on Elizabeth and Robert.

E. I thought so, but… I feel compelled to add a bit more. May I share something I’ve never told you before?

K. (softly) Please, Dear.

E. I see a few parallels between us and the Brownings; sadly, these similarities do not extend to proficiency in writing.

K. (softly laughing)

E. I have a story for you; a true one. Several years ago, in session with a psychic-medium, I received a message about you. I’d given her no clues or details, yet she described you, and our early years, very accurately. She knew about how we’d troubled each other as teens, said that we’d “grated” on each other -- like “sandpaper,” she said.

K. (small smile) I've always been your lifetime “gratest” girl.

E. That you are. Also, as a point of evidence of this psychic's authenticity, I'd been recommended to her by someone with whom I'd done business. This person had received, from the psychic, before dealing with me, a very accurate vision or description of me as one this person would do business with. And so, as it happened, the psychic-lady had seen both of us in vision with a good deal of precision.

K. It was a form of remote-viewing.

E. I think that's right. The psychic-lady spoke to me about us. She said it would have been a mistake for us to be together as young adults as our immaturity and anger would have made us miserable; that, it was not yet our time to come together, and that, you might say, the Guides virtually "barred the door" in our teen years for things to work out for us, and that we were meant to be apart for a good long while, as it was best for us to learn our life-lessons independently.

K. (sighing) But, Ellus, it almost seems like the Guides were the cause for us losing each other back then. Does this mean we were set-up for failure and weren't responsible for what happened?

E. I don't think it works that way, Dear. The Guides, in this world or the next, never force people to do anything, and they never "possess" anyone, such that, free-will is negated. I think what probably happened is that, to lead us into a teaching-path, they "fanned the flames" of our proclivities and "pulled our strings" to effect certain outcomes. Let's just say they didn't have to pull too hard.

K. (very softly laughing) Willing accomplices to our own demise.

E. (small smile) We've had so much practice at it now, we're such naturals at it.

K. Uh-huh.

E. Then, Baby Doll, she said she pictured you at a certain age. I said that this was incorrect, that you were actually a fair bit older than that now. She said the vision was not necessarily your current age but the age at which a significant event for us occurred. And that was correct. The given age was your age at a seminal meeting for us, well after teen years. It’s as if she was given a vision of you operating on the level of your “true self,” which, at our meeting, would have been the case as it was an occasion of extreme joy for us. In confirmation, by way of contrast, of this rarely-seen “true self,” she also said that your life was an unhappy one, though you were trying to do your best, as you understood your duties to be. As I recall, I said you were deluded regarding this, and she, as mouthpiece of the Guides, agreed.

K. (silence)

E. Then, I think I laughed out loud when she described your personality as “flamboyant” -- no delusion there.

K. (small smile)

E. And she said that she discerned, in my spirit, a willingness to wait for you, "no matter how long the wait" – “even if she’s 90,” she said. And she was right about that, too, as she saw my heart exactly.

K. (deeply sighing)

E. Dearest -- or maybe, to keep up with Elizabeth, it should be, “Dearest Dearest”…

K. (very softly laughing) Flamboyantly yours…

E. (softly laughing)

E. I’d like you to keep in mind that this message was not from the lady-psychic, as such – she was only the messenger -- but it came directly from our Spirit Guides, a “letter from Heaven” to us. They know who we are and what’s going on, and they know exactly what we've been through and where we are in the process right now. But here’s what I really wanted to tell you as it relates to the story of the Brownings. You and Elizabeth are a lot alike. You both have that classic "artistic temperment," as she’s “flamboyant,” as well; and you both become easily frightened and then bellicose, and for the same underlying reason.

K. (silence)

E. Elizabeth had a problem with loving herself, believing in herself, seeing herself as “worthy”; and the same malady afflicts you. And this issue began to come out as I spoke to the psychic-lady.

K. (very softly) What did she say?

E. She said, long ago, when you came to see me, or would talk to me -- those rare times in our life; I count 4 or 5 times – when we met authentically and the masks came down, when you laughed with me, shared joy with me, with your characteristic “mad” and “wild-streak” love, she said this was a “tremendous gift” to me; meaning, almost no one in this world gets to experience what I experienced with you.

K. (softly) Ellus… you sometimes use the phrase “tremendous gift.” I didn’t know that it was originally for me!

E. It's just for you. It’s a phrase directly from Heaven – not my phrase -- to describe the intense, white-hot love and pure joy you brought to me. Darling Dear, you’re famous over there; the Guides know about this, and they know it's rare.

K. (sighing)

E. She said – rather, Heaven insisted -- that it was very important that I tell you just how deeply I was affected by your overwhelming outpouring of affection. Your fervency constituted a “tremendous gift” for me, in that, all that I know about true love, all of my wisdom in this regard, in essence, I learned in those brief moments with you.

K. (silence)

E. And, in receiving from Heaven this message, and the phrase “tremendous gift,” I began to realize that each Twin lover gives to the other the same kind of gift. Your gift to me was one of validation of my person, of being utterly accepted and desired by you. And in that realization, I knew what I needed to give to you, my own attempt at “tremendous gift” for you. I felt compelled to communicate to you, by all means possible – not just with words, but how I lived my life – that with great longing I desire to cherish and treasure you. I want to do this for its own sake, because it’s in my heart to do so, but I also know that this is what you need to receive in order to overcome feelings of unworthiness and self-unlove.

K. (very softly) This is all very beautiful, Darling Dear; and I see more clearly now how Twins are meant to offer each other this “tremendous gift” … (sighing) thank you… but... we shouldn't be too surprised at the power of true love, that it "opened the windows of heaven" for you... after all, we know of a book that says the real love is "something never seen before."

E. (smiling)