By Esme Ellis
Multi-faceted visionary craftsman Esme Ellis has been a supporter and contributor to the Visionary Fiction Alliance almost from its inception. It is our privilege to present some of her musings about the writing life as well as samples of her visionary art in this post.
Journey of a Wounded Healer
My first book Pathway into Sunrise, written in 1998, is subtitled “Journey of a Wounded Healer.” The Wounded Healer is Chiron; half horse/half man and the legend comes from the Greek Myth which I address at the end of the book. The legend tells the story of Chiron and how he came to be wounded. In these far-off times when the race of human beings was coming into existence, great and powerful cosmic forces were at work shaping our destiny. The Hierarchy in the form of Gods and Goddesses, Titans or Kings, Centaurs, Satyrs and a multitude of other life-forms including the minerals, plants and animal kingdoms were interbreeding and interacting with one another. The power of animals was both respected and feared.
It seems that Cronus the Sky God, turning his attention to the goings-on on Earth, one day spotted the beautiful Phylira hiding in a grove of trees. He chased after her and tried to rape her. In panic she fled from him, but the Gods seeing her plight changed her into a mare to escape from him. Whereupon he changed himself into a stallion and mated with her. She then gave birth to a male child with four hairy legs and the upper body of a man. She was horrified and disgusted and left the child to die. Abandoned by both his father and his mother, the baby Chiron was found and taken to Apollo the Sun God, who fostered him and brought him up as his own. Apollo was the god of beauty, music, harmony, reason and logic. Under his tutorage Chiron was highly educated and his creativity was developed.
In his turn Chiron became a wise and devoted teacher. Many were the students who were drawn to him both from the world of men and from the Immortals. These included Hercules and Apollo’s favorite son, Asclepius, who was to be known as the father of medicine. During one of the battles which were constantly taking place between the civilized men and the savage and licentious Centaurs, Hercules let fly a poisoned arrow which accidentally pierced Chiron’s leg. It would have been fatal but for the fact that Chiron was immortal. Doubly wounded now, the greatest of all healers, unable to be healed and unable to die, was fated to live in agony until the Titan Prometheus heard of his plight.
It was Prometheus who created man in the likeness of the gods, fashioning them from clay and water. Devoted to his creation he stole Divine Fire from the fiery chariot of the Sun, and bestowed this gift on mankind. The race of men, however, was not yet ready to handle this immensely powerful gift. Sometimes they were inspired to use it wisely and rose to the heights of human creation, but often down the ages they have created chaos and destruction with Divine Fire. The Divinities, outraged by Prometheus’s theft, sentenced him to be chained to a rock for the rest of his life, while a vulture tore out his liver, which grew again each day.
It was at this point that the two tormented souls, Chiron and Prometheus, came together and evolved a creative solution. Chiron was so moved by the Titan’s plight that he exchanged his immortality for the mortality of Prometheus, and so died. Because of his sacrifice, the Gods transformed him into a star in the heavens. Thus the immortal experience of death is the condition that all humans must pass through until they have developed the spiritual gifts of compassion and unconditional love while also mastering the Promethean gift of divine creativity. Chiron still shines and is now a minor planet in our solar system
Discovering the Visionary Fiction Alliance
I first wrote about this on a website called Books by Women. I wasn’t altogether happy to be called a ‘women’s writer,’ but after reading work of some of the writers there, I began to soften my stance. One of the writers I read and admired was by Jodine Turner, and it was through her that I discovered the Visionary Fiction Alliance. I was delighted to find it and felt at home there immediately.
Jodine was one of the founder members, (along with Eleni Papanou, Margaret Duarte and Saleena Karim.) To quote from their stated aims:
- Growth in consciousness is the central theme of the story and drives the protagonist, and/or other important characters.
- Oftentimes VF uses reincarnation, dreams, visions, paranormal, psychic abilities, and other metaphysical plot devices.
- VF is universal in its worldview and scope.
Reincarnation and Beyond
I was drawn to Vic Smith’s account of his belief in Reincarnation. In Pathway into Sunrise, I had written an account of my own experience many years ago when I clinically died soon after giving birth to my first child. The thing about travelling down a long corridor that gets darker and darker is true, however dramatic it sounds. (This phenomenon is often termed; Near Death Experience.) It felt scary as it got darker — but all of a sudden I was out into bright sunlight and found myself in a field of flowers. Not on the ground, but trailing my feet in the tips of the leaves. I heard, but didn’t see, voices calling me and welcoming me. I suddenly remembered that I had just given birth, and that the little baby needed me to look after her and that I must rush back to life in the real world. Then I heard the midwife, who was holding my wrist, calling out ‘Good heavens! her pulse has stopped now.’ I murmured to myself ‘It’s Ok I’ve decided to come back.’
This episode and the one below may not count exactly as Reincarnation, yet I think they manage to throw some light on it.
Several years later, David, an old friend, committed suicide. The way that I heard about it caused me a great shock, and led, I believe, to my long on-going illness. Previously David had been in prison for causing a fatal accident, which happened this way. He had just split up from his wife, also a friend of mine. David had gone to a party when she suddenly appeared in the same room. Not wanting her to see him, he ran out into the street, jumped into his car and drove off at speed. Unfortunately a young girl, (about the same age as one of his daughters,) wandered across the street just at that moment, and he ran her over her and killed her.
He served a sentence for manslaughter, but out of prison later, he decided to apply himself to helping released prisoners. He was a well-educated person, and before being incarcerated he had held an important position where he met foreigners coming to Britain and escorted them around London showing them the sights. He helped them to choose clothing suitable for our colder climate and took them to high-class restaurants. Then came that fatal accident and prison. After his release the prison governor offered him a job in a ‘half-way house’ where newly released prisoners could be re-educated and reinstated into society again.
One of the ‘old lags’ (released prisoners,) played a nasty trick on him. He’d climbed in at a skylight in the roof and let himself into David’s room where his equipment was stored, record players and cameras, etc. These the prisoner stole. David felt completely betrayed by this, and during the night he killed himself. I found out about this when a neighbor, walking towards me up the street, stopped me and said,’ Did you hear that your friend David has killed himself?’ At first I thought I’d misheard. She looked at me maliciously and said it again. I thought ‘You bitch. How could you say such a thing?!’ Then it really began to sink in.
Moving on: I went to his funeral. His wife and children were there. I sat at the back of the church along with dozens of ‘old lags’ who’d come to pay their respects to a man who had done so much for them. After the service, when the coffin approached from the front of the church with his wife and children following on, they noticed me sitting there and ran up to hug me. We all cried with our arms around each other.
A few days later I happened to go into my sculpture studio where David had been staying with me after his release. I heard his voice, loud and clear, saying, ‘Esme. Please don’t worry about me. All is well. I’m in a good place now.’ I also heard lots of children’s voices circling around him, looking happy in the sunshine. David had always loved children and often took my daughter along with his own children to the local swimming pool.
A few days later, in my garden this time, I heard the same voice, slightly less clear, but unmistakable. Having this message from a friend who had just died was both reassuring and unnerving.
My understanding of reincarnation has evolved, broadened, and deepened over time. I now believe that we are born over and again, learning lessons every time. Some of those lessons have taken us to some very dark places indeed, but there has always been a chance for us to learn from that until we eventually stop repeating our failures. Finally, I believe we attain the state of Ascended Masters who don’t return back to Earth, but even before that time we are able to serve as teachers to those who still remain on Earth.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Esme Ellis gained scholarships to the junior art department of the Sheffield College of Art at the age of 11 and then to the senior art college at 14, finally choosing sculpture and ceramics as her favored studies at 17. Five years later, she received another scholarship to The Royal College of Art in London. After the RCA, she spent a year in Rome, working on her studies and visiting many museums and galleries.
She then returned to London where she unfortunately managed to contract M.E. (or Myalgic Encephala Myelitis) and had to give up sculpture. After moving to Bath in 1975, where she has lived ever since, she turned to painting; and due to fortunate meetings with several people, she finally began writing. She has written four books; Pathway Into Sunrise, Clea and the Fifth Dimension, This Strange and Precious Thing, and Dreaming Worlds Awake.