Yosemite Falls

This ceremony from Silo’s Message, intended to be read aloud to the dying at the moment of their departure, is also a beautiful meditation that can help us prepare for one day crossing that threshold ourselves. I decided to learn the words by heart, and in the process found myself singing them, which eventually evolved into this recording, offered in celebration and gratitude for the inconceivable mystery of life and death.

Trudi Lee Richards – vocals

Daniel Buchanan – piano

Assistance

from Silo’s Message

This is a ceremony of great affection, requiring the person performing it to give the best of himself or herself.

The ceremony may be repeated at the request of the person receiving it or those caring for him or her.

The Officiant is alone with the dying person.

Regardless of whether person who is dying appears lucid or unconscious, the Officiant comes close to them and speaks slowly in a voice that is soft and clear.

 

Officiant: The memories of your life are the judgment of your actions. You can, in a short time, recall much of what is best in you. Remember then, but without fear, and purify your memory. Gently remember, and calm your mind…

The Officiant remains silent for a few minutes, and then resumes reading in a voice of the same tone and intensity.

Reject startling fears and disheartenment…

Reject the desire to flee toward low and dark regions…

Reject the attachment to memories…

Remain in internal liberty, indifferent toward the dream of the landscape.

……

Resolve now to begin the ascent…

The pure Light dawns in the summits of the great mountain chains, and the waters-of-a-thousand-colors flow amid unrecognizable melodies toward crystalline plateaus and prairies…

Do not fear the pressure of the Light which pushes against you with increasing strength the closer you draw to its center. Absorb it as though it were a liquid or a wind, for certainly, in it is life… 

When you find the hidden city in the great mountain chain, you must know the entrance—and you will know it in the moment your life is transformed. Its enormous walls are written in figures, are written in colors, are “sensed.” In this city are kept the done and the yet-to-be-done…

The Officiant leaves a brief silence, and then resumes reading in a voice of the same tone and intensity.

Now you are reconciled…

You are purified…

Prepare to enter the most beautiful City of Light, this city never seen by the eye, whose song has never been heard by human ears…

Come, prepare to enter the most beautiful Light…

“Asistencia” – Ceremony of Assistance, with piano accompaniment
Trudi Lee Richards

Trudi Lee Richards

Trudi Lee Richards, a poetic and musical member of the Universal Human Nation, is the author of On Wings of Intent, a biography of Silo; Soft Brushes with Death, a Jorge Espinet Primer; Confessions of Olivia, a fictional autobiography; and Fish Scribbles. She has also co-authored two books: Experiences on the Threshold and Ambrosia - Poetic Recipes/Recetas poeticas. Exactly two of her poems have been published by anyone other than her less-than-modest self: “The Great 21st Century Poemic" appeared in the April 2021 edition of Global Poemic (globalpoemic.wordpress.com); and "Fairies of the Forest" appeared in the Palo Alto Times "Youth Said It" column in 1957. In the '90s she also wrote for, edited and published an independent San Francisco newspaper, Human Future; and in the '70s she co-founded the San Francisco arts publication La Mamelle, which morphed into Art Com before it died, and whose remnants are now housed in the Stanford Archives. A graduate of Stanford University, she helped raise several humans from infancy, and is now enjoying their friendship. Currently she tends to wander between Oregon and California, enjoying the company of her beloved community of friends and family. She can more or less reliably be found at the west coast Park of Study and Reflection, outside Red Bluff in Northern California, on the third Saturday of every month.