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No Guide to Grief, Lovingly Dedicated to All Who Have Lost Loved Ones


Manatita is an esteemed author living in London, UK. He writes spiritual books, flash fiction and esoteric poetry, his favourite genre.

Out of the ashes/FB

Out of the ashes/FB

There is a profound and impactful story in the life of the Buddha. A woman, having faith in him, paid a visit for the purpose of asking him to save the life of her dead son. The Buddha smiled compassionately and asked her to bring him some mustard seeds, from a house in which there had been no afflictions … no deaths. The woman thought that this was simple enough and set out as quickly as she could.

The story goes that in every house she visited, she discovered that someone was either ill, suffering from a malady of sorts, or one or two had actually died. Wisdom dawned on the woman and she went back to the Buddha with a matured Heart, asking to become one of his disciples.

My father died in my early fifties and my mom in my late fifties. One of my sisters has stage 4 cancer. This poem is not only for those who have lost mothers, fathers, daughters or sons. Grief takes many forms and so this is for you in your grief, in whatever form it takes. Hari Om! (Victory to Love! All glory to the Absolute Supreme!)

No Guide to Grief

Here at the funeral parlour, I stood

Over my mother’s casket, and watched her face.

A sweetness had descended, from the great

Void of Emptiness and kissed her cheeks.

On the Elysian lap of death, she travelled,

But Love caressed her last breath;

Hid unseen within the stillness of her sacrifice.

What Light she exuded; what radiance!

The poignancy of the music touched me;

I remembered her fortitude; her sweetness.

My tears travelled four thousand miles,

Only to drop, like dew, in this sacred sanctuary.

Time flew, like the Phoenix, to the eternal gate,

Yet my mother’s Spirit lingered, exuding the Peace of Heaven.

Today my soul-bird cried copiously,

And my younger sister, not seeing me like this before,

Dropped her head unto my shoulders and wept with me.

There is no guide to grief! No compass,

No maps, no GPS. The blind has a dog, yes;

The Captain, his navigational charts.

But Love, the astrolabe of God’s secrets,

Carves its choice hour, into the emptiness of each soul.

- Manatita, The Lantern Carrier, 26th March, 2019.


Wisdom from the Master

"Who will understand,
Who will believe
The pressure of my private grief?
I have lost my heart’s
Only child:
God." - Sri Chinmoy.


The Agony of Grieving

Forlorn is my state. I hear soothing voices;

Feel the comforting hands on my shoulders.

Yet I walk inside, empty and alone.

I need this momentary journey without schedule,

Carving my own space; dealing with this searing pain –

This bitter Alchemist, sent to heal my wounded Heart.

I say: “Be merciful, O Lord!”

You say: “lt is I who carry your rugged scars.”

I say: “Can You walk a little quicker?” You smile sweetly.

I know now that I cannot move faster than Grace;

That my inner knots need to be untied.

I give praise, yet it is small comfort,

From the extreme agony tearing up my soul;

Preparing it for a much deeper Love.

Manatita, The Lantern Carrier. 3rd may, 2019.


© 2019 manatita44


manatita44 (author) from london on April 02, 2020:

Thank You, Peggy.

Much Love.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on April 02, 2020:

Most of us who are of a certain age have experienced the loss of loved ones and friends. There is indeed no right or wrong in the way we grieve. It is a necessary part of moving forward. Peace be with you.

manatita44 (author) from london on November 11, 2019:

So sweet Patricia.

I love you very much as many others here. You have borne so much pain and struggle and yet you keep your head up and rise high, like the Phoenix. Thank you so much and God continue to bless your life of sweet sacrifice and fortitude. Peace

Patricia Scott from North Central Florida on November 11, 2019:

Indeed....there truly is 'no guide to grief! No compass... and we all find our way to the valley in our own way. YOU know about grief and sadness and yet you bring joy and hope to others. Thank you for sharing. Angels are headed your way this evening ps

manatita44 (author) from london on May 07, 2019:

The Christ speaks of One. Sri Krishna speaks of one. My teacher speaks of one. The physicist knows that we are purely energy.

Look for a path that includes mysticism

. Some things are beyond the mind. Find someone that embodies God. The individual that thinks he knows, is as equally convinced as the one who knows he knows.

God is the Spirit within the Heart. A Divine Intelligence. Not a man up in the sky.

Whats wrong with being an atheist? You are after Love not doctrines.

manatita44 (author) from london on May 07, 2019:

Ha ha.

in Yoga, It is you that have to be right. if something works for you, use it. if it does not make you strong, let it go.


Chris Mills from Traverse City, MI on May 07, 2019:

Not teasing at all. I read what you have to say, and I listen to videos of the late Christopher Hitchens. I love you both, but you can't both be right.

Chris Mills from Traverse City, MI on May 07, 2019:

I think I can grasp the concept that the Supreme is our only friend. I say that while recognizing those who have befriended me here. The authenticity of the statement rings true. I am on the very edge of declaring myself an atheist or even an antitheist. The thought that there is no Supreme Being breaks my heart.

manatita44 (author) from london on May 07, 2019:

Glad that you read the intro, Dee. It is pregnant with meaning. I will visit you and Cam again tomorrow evening. I need to get some sleep for a resuscitation course tomorrow. Gratitude.


manatita44 (author) from london on May 07, 2019:

Ha ha.

Love and serve … love and serve; Aspire and manifest. Your aspiration is your life of sadhana: Prayer, both verbal and silent daily, devotional singing, scripture reading from different books. Visualisation tapes; the Jesus manta. Try The Practice of the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence or The Imitation of Christ by Thomas A Kempis. Read The 40 Rules on Love by Shams. All on the internet.

Manifestation is what you do in the world to serve your brothers and sisters: mankind. Selfless service is an outpouring of the Heart which is social, physical, financial ... psychic and without expectations. But remember that Aspiration comes first, as it is from your prayers that you will get the Grace to help you serve.

Offer Gratitude to the Divine … pray for the twins of self-effort and God's Grace. Watch your stressors … never do what makes you weak. That's a start. of all these the most important is to draw God's Light. This either comes from prayer and meditation, or if you are a doer, then it comes from selfless actions. The day will come, when you will see that selfless effort, is also an aspect of his Grace.

I'm on a role Bro. I think you were just teasing me, right? Well, hope I have said something right. See God in everything. Jesus was humble because he knew that you and I are made in the image of God. Thank you for being here. Much Love, my Brother.

P.s Grief is good and necessary but remember that all things are transitory or ephemeral except the Love of God. Guru used to tell us that the Supreme is our only friend.

Chris Mills from Traverse City, MI on May 07, 2019:

My manatita, show me the way, please. I love you my friend as I love Sean.

Dora Weithers from The Caribbean on May 06, 2019:

Your first poem made me imagine looking down at my own mother, complete with moist eyes. Grief is painful, but it also teaches contentment and surrender to God's control. Thanks for your poetic offerings. The introductory story is also powerful. Thanks for sharing.

manatita44 (author) from london on May 06, 2019:


That last line is deep, Bro. Trust you to find it. Ha ha. Seriously, I know of your struggles. I have even alluded to it in Ioannis's recent Hub. I feel for all my friends and take pride if I sense that that they are moving forward, as in your most loving response to Ioannis in one of our interviews. Grief is deep and in Sri Chinmoy's philosophy, it is nothing to be ashamed of … it helps the soul.

I like the first photo up top, as this person explains it so well! How are the Flash going? My eyes are not so good, so I will take a rest but visit you soon. Om Shanti!

manatita44 (author) from london on May 06, 2019:

My Sweet Tamara.

Busy with the children? I always think of you, you know. Gratitude and much Love.

Venkatachari M Ji,

As usual, a great response. You miss nothing, a remarkable quality of empathy and self-giving. I know of your wife, of course and your sacrifice. I didn't know of your mom and dad. I pray that they continue to triumph in heaven. Om Shanti, my Brother.

Tamara Yancosky from Uninhabited Regions on May 06, 2019:

This poem is comforting, Manatita, because it validates the fact that we all grieve some time, or another, in our lives. Knowing that we are not alone is so helpful. Thank you ❤️

Venkatachari M from Hyderabad, India on May 05, 2019:

I can understand how it feels to be grief-stricken. It requires a lot of strength and patience to cope with it.

I have lost my mother in my early teenage period and my father when I was 20 years. And, now my wife in 2012. But, we should remember that it's all a part of life. And keep moving on.

I am sorry about your sister's disease. Have faith in God. My blessings to her and you all.

Chris Mills from Traverse City, MI on May 05, 2019:

manatita, Of course, this hub struck home with me. I'm such a weenie. Eleven years and I still cry. The last line of "No Guide to Grief" will take some pondering. "But Love, the astrolabe of God’s secrets, Carves its choice hour, into the emptiness of each soul."

manatita44 (author) from london on May 04, 2019:

Sean and Peggy.

I told the story of the woman who went to Buddha to bring her son back to life. It didnt take her long to realise that many other families, were in the same boat.

Now I see that so many of us here have cause to grieve. my belated condolences. Gratitude.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on May 04, 2019:

Grieving does take time. Having lost both of my parents and both of my younger brothers as well as many others, I am very familiar with it. Believing in a life after this one truly helps that process, but it is still painful.

Ioannis Arvanitis from Greece, Almyros on May 04, 2019:

Yes, my Brother, God has blessed me with four sons! Between the third and the forth, we lost one girl probably because we had to have one child in Heaven too! God is merciful!

Love can transform you into a better man even through grief!


manatita44 (author) from london on May 04, 2019:

A child? New one on me. You have four, no? In which case God was merciful indeed!! How else would you have done all this work? Salaam!

Ioannis Arvanitis from Greece, Almyros on May 04, 2019:

Divine poetry! Thank you, my brother, for this sublime gift! I have lost my father and a child. I was 29 and 40. Both times Love guided me out of the black clouds of grief. For me, Love is the only compass!

The living of Love is the end of grief!


manatita44 (author) from london on May 03, 2019:

Me again Ruby.

Grieving is necessary and the first photo with prose up top expresses it nicely. We are grieving for the development of our own souls. Actually, we love children and the Christ for similar reasons. They remind us of our own innocence, joy, spontaneity, happiness... they act as benchmarks for what we truly are, only that we have forgotten, that's all. So Earth is a necessary experience to take us back Home. Guruji says it all in just six lines above the garland.


I appreciate your loving offering. Thank you.

manatita44 (author) from london on May 03, 2019:

Very wise indeed, Eric. Very wise indeed. Thank you so much!

Ruby, my dear.

For what its worth, Guruji taught that real spiritual masters have no will of their own. They follow the will of the Supreme.

They see clearly that some are meant to live and some are meant to die. Otherwise saving them can hinder the growth of the soul.

So we pray, yes, but if the soul's time has come, at best the spiritual master can grant a temporary stay.

Sorry for your loss. Real Masters can intervene, but only if sanctioned or approved by the Divine. Thanks for your loving sentiments.

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on May 03, 2019:

Such eloquence. I had a guru tell me once to enjoy grieving. Kind of set a tone for me decades ago. I feel that one of the most rude things to do is discount someone else's grief.

Thank you for sharing this as I am certain it will help many.

Ruby Jean Richert from Southern Illinois on May 03, 2019:

Oh Manatita, this is truly beautiful. I remember standing and looking at my mother in her casket, she looked so beautiful, not a blemish, yet she suffered terribly. Of course I am now thinking of my son who passed away four months ago, the loss was unbearable. Your comforting words sustain me, yet I still greave and have all the emotions you mention, for quite a while I felt acute anger, even going into my Pastor's office and telling him that his prayers for my son didn't help. I was so sorry afterwards. I apologized later, but it took some time. Thank you for heartfelt poetry. Hope you are well...

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on May 03, 2019:

Peace be with you my brother. Beautiful words indeed.

manatita44 (author) from london on May 03, 2019:

Sweeet! Cool way of putting it. Thank you, my dear Linda. Going out. Late. Peace.

Linda Lum from Washington State, USA on May 03, 2019:

Manatita, it has been said that grief is the dark side of love. If we did not love we would not feel the loss and our hearts would not break. Thank you for these two writings, eloquent and poignant description of the pain, and recognition that our loving God understands. "...The Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through groans that words cannot express."

manatita44 (author) from london on May 03, 2019:

Thank you, my Dear Mary.

I thought of you and a few more, while I wrote. My Love is always with you and our Lord's infinitely stronger. He will continue to help with the healing. Praise be! - Lantern.

Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on May 03, 2019:

I feel with you as I read through the words. My grief is stronger as the days of my husband's absence dawn on me clearly each day but I am strengthened by the thought that I am not the only one feeling this grief. Thank you for sharing.

manatita44 (author) from london on May 03, 2019:

Ha ha. Mom passed about 9 years ago. She was in a wheelchair for about three years; so it was a welcome relief for all parties, including mom. She asked my brother to call us, as she said she'd be gone in two days. He laughed, as she was looking pretty good that day. Yet she was gone in two days as she predicted.

Appreciating your kind sentiments and yes, my faith has been unwavering for 36 years. Thank you so much!!

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on May 03, 2019:

Manatita, these poems are painfully beautiful. My heart bleeds for your loss and anyone who has lost a part of their soul with the death of a loved one.

I feel the wrenching pain in these words. I also feel your strength in faith.

Bless you, my friend.

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