Welcome to another week of "Postcards" from the Kingdom of Heaven! Hopefully, you're not too exhausted with the long journey so far. This week, I'll drop you off with another tour guide where you'll travel to Utopia and learn all about Shepherds.
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THIS WEEK'S GUIDE
Hello, everyone. I'm glad to have you all here with me right now. I know your journey from Nirvana to Utopia has been a long one. A week of Earth Time is only about three days here in Heaven. I'm sure you must be experiencing what you Mortals call "jet lag" by now. Well, I'll try to take it easy on you.
As my Sister-in-Wisdom might have mentioned, my name is Theo. I am an Angel of Wisdom and the Keeper of Life. Sounds pretty intense, doesn't it? Well, don't let it intimidate you. That's just Ginysis' way of saying I can return souls to Earth, if I choose and if they are deemed worthy.
Let me elaborate: When your soul expires on Earth, you may enter the Pearl Gates to the Kingdom of Heaven as long as you bear the Heavenly Mark. It is not typical for us to know if you will bear the Heavenly Mark before your Death, but Fate made special exception for you, I see. It's just as well, we don't want someone visiting who might later try to take over our Kingdom!
Now, I know you have questions. Carmen isn't one for providing a lot of information. She has all the Knowledge, but she's quite particular with whom she shares it. As is her right. She is its Keeper, after all.
Still, I'm sure you would like to know what all this Heavenly Mark business is about. Well, the most I can tell you is each of you has a small flowering Tree on the back of your neck. It only appears there upon taking your final breath. If the entirety of your Life sums up to something good, then you bear the Heavenly Mark. If it doesn't...Well, our Pearl Gate Defenders deny you access. Right now, all of you bear the Heavenly Mark, but be aware that could change! You all seem to have a lot of Life left on Earth, so do good with it, hmm?
As I mentioned, I'm the Keeper of Life. When you are welcomed into the Kingdom and escorted to Ecstasy, I can return you to Earth if that is a viable option for you. However, you do not get to return to the Life you left behind for that Life has ended. Instead, you get to start anew from the very beginning. I believe your doctors came up with a term for it...deja vu? Yes, that's it.
Forgive me. Angels of Wisdom spend most of our Time in council and moving souls where they need to go. We are not as privy to some of the terminology on Earth as other Angels.
Well, that's a nice segue. You're here for a tour, so let me show you around Utopia.
This is a working city in Heaven. It is by far the most populated yet it is the easiest place to reside. As you can see, there are rooms a plenty for everyone! All of the living quarters of the Angels here are made the same. A common area amid four to six private Observatories.
While I can't take you inside, I can help you understand what the purpose of Utopia is and why it is so critical to Heaven. Imagine a communal apartment--is that right? Patrise has a bit more knowledge of Earth than Carmen and I, so she tried to teach us a few things before you came. Bless her. Carmen is hard on her and resists a lot of her wisdom, but Patrise really is a gifted Angel.
Good. I got the terminology right. So, if you imagine one of your communal apartments back on
Earth, that will be a good way to imagine the living quarters in Utopia. The common area is where Angels can come together if there seems to be an issue that needs resolved. They can also take some Time to socialize. After all, the days in Heaven are quite long compared to your Earth days, and we often need to take a break!
Off of each common area is an Observatory. This is the most important room in Utopia. Only one Angel is permitted to each Observatory to eliminate distraction while working. Inside, there is a large globe of Earth, akin to the ones you use. The difference between the two globes is the light that emits from ours. It's unlike simply putting a light inside yours to make it like a lamp.
Now, let me see if I can explain it to you. You see, each one of you emits a light. Some are brighter than others, but it still shows. That is the light our Angels see on their globes. Your very soul shines for them so they know you are safe. We try to assign one Mortal to each Shepherd, but your population is numerous, so it does not always work that way. The lights from your soul are a good way to remind your Angel that you exist. The dimmer your light, the more guidance you need from your Angel.
Trust me, they are all very good at balancing multiple Mortals at once. It is when those Hellions try to interfere that things get hairy, but that is what our Guardians are for. Oh, I'm getting ahead of your tour! I'll let Samuel explain that when you get to him.
As I was saying, your Angels can find your light on their globe to watch over you. No one has a light that shines like you do, which makes their job easier. When they are ready to find you and investigate your Life closer, they can Focus on you and the rest of the world fades away. It's rather a unique experience because of the Time lapse. Our Angels often say they are watching Mortals in fast-forward!
Where was I? Oh, yes, the globe! The globe then shines your light onto the domed ceiling in the Observatory so that the Angel can bear witness better. Think of it like going to those places where you can look at simulations of outer space...Oh, what did Patrise say they were? I know I asked her about that...
Planadiums? No. I don't know what that is...
Pollenations? No, no. That's the flower reproduction word...
Oh, planetariums! Yes, that's it. Again, I apologize. Much like the other Angels who have been around since the Dawn, I've actually never been to Earth, so this is a new experience for me to talk about what you have there. I know of your Life and existence in that Realm, but not of the nuances.
THE SHEPHERDS OF EARTH
Well, now that you've learned what I can share with you about Utopia and the globes, I expect it's Time to tell you who these Angels are that are watching you. They are Shepherds.
Shepherds are Angels who have gone through their training in Nirvana to learn their Divine Purpose is keeping watch. They are always watching, always on alert and guarding you. Even though you are right here in Heaven, I guarantee one of them is watching you right now. It is the duty, the Purpose of a Shepherd to Focus their gaze on their assigned souls to ensure nothing bad happens to them.
Unfortunately, the Hellions are quite strong and bad things often happen. Our Shepherds are not perfect; in fact, none of us are. But we do the best we can to ensure there is balance between the Three Realms. There are some things laid out in the Divine Treaty that we cannot control. So our Shepherds help you Mortals fight against the temptation of evil until Fate tells them not to. Being a Shepherd is often a thankless job, but they are proud to do it.
I assume Carmen explained Angel wings to you? In Nirvana, you won't see many large wings. Those Angels are just learning their craft, so it will take time to build up strength. But Shepherds have a fairly impressive set of wings. They do not harden quite like those of a Guardian or Defender, but they are still useful in combat. Fortunately, very few of our Shepherds have ever had to test how useful they are. When something serious goes awry on Earth, Shepherds are required by Divine Rule to call upon the Guardians of Grace and they will assist.
Yes, and all of our Shepherds have golden chords on their wings with gems on them. The color of the gem varies based on how many Mortal souls they have saved from Hellions. It's quite a great accomplishment. Shepherds do all the dirty work for the rest of us, serving on the front-line to battle off the evils of the Three Realms. These Angels are so often overlooked for their courage and strength. That is why I wanted to give you a little Time to learn about them and appreciate what they do for you while you're living your Life on Earth.
It is important to me, as the Keeper of Life, that you understand how fragile your Life really is. There are a lot of Angels working tirelessly to ensure you're safe. Although they are free to take breaks every now and then and fraternize with each other, they always have one eye on you and the other on your Fate.
Well, I hope you've enjoyed that brief tour of Utopia and the Shepherds. I do apologize that we could not go inside, but their homes are restricted to Angels only. Perhaps, if you stay on the right course, one day you'll be able to reside among them. Anyway, it has been a pleasure to get out of Ecstasy for a while. Angels of Wisdom do not get a change of scenery very often, and I am glad it was for this Purpose and a more dire need.
I believe you're heading to Ecstasy for yourself next. Patrise will be your guide. I'm sure Carmen had a few things to say about her, but just ignore that. Patrise's arrival was not...easy for us. What she keeps is something that is still difficult for us to comprehend hundreds of thousands of years later. But she's a good Angel with a good heart. You can trust her.
Alright. Off with you, then. Just follow that Defender and you'll meet Patrise in front of the Castle of Wisdom.
I hope you enjoyed learning a little from Theo about Utopia and the Shepherds! As he said, next week, you'll make your way to Ecstasy. There's a lot that goes on there, so be patient with Patrise. She has a big job to do with your leg of the tour!