WHEN a skyscraper collapses, as happened at 44 Gerrard Road, Ikoyi Lagos, on Monday 01 November 2021, human casualties may occur. About 45 persons were killed and 15 were rescued in the Ikoyi disaster. Several others were physically hurt in several ways which may bone fractures and excruciating pains. Some were psychically broken and would require trauma therapies. For yet others, the impact would be heartbreaks and grief or psychological disorientation. It would not matter if the victims are alive or dead!
For some time to come, we would be talking about the experiences of the survivors and their loved ones. Many of us will very quickly forget the persons who were killed, or what they went through, even in death under the rubbles, because many of us do not seriously believe that life goes on after physical death on earth. Before I come to the dead, I would like to make some remarks about Life beyond earthly existence.
ONE: At 24, I had an Out Body Experience(OBE). I came out of my physical body and day consciously observed that my body lying in bed was fast asleep. Later on, I attained day consciousness in a few dreams. Day consciousness in your dream means that you are as conscious in that dream as you are day conscious behind the steering wheel of your motor vehicle in fast-moving traffic. It opens the door to a wide range of psychic experiences in which earth life is no longer seen as a cage and a mystery, but as part, though infinitesimal, of a single existence which transverses many worlds that may be simultaneously experienced even when we are still earth beings.
These higher realms of existence govern human activities on earth for good or ill, depending on where earth men and women incline towards. The Universe is beaming to the earth different broadcasts from different power centers, some pure and good, some dark and evil. These broadcasts are what we call INSPIRATION or GUIDANCE. Whatever Inspiration or Guidance we receive depends on the power centers we incline towards or tune to like radio or television receiving sets. We can now configure from which power center came to the idea to build a 21–storey building on a foundation suited to only five floors. We can also conjecture where the idea comes from when we use inferior or inadequate materials in building constructions simply because we wish to cut corners. Such power centers give us the ideas we searched for by opening up to them, enlarging these ideas and encouraging us to perilously walk over the edge and down the cliff.
TWO: Another evidence for me of existence beyond earth-life was the death of my father at about 3:30a.m on 26 August 1998, a Wednesday. I rose from a dream about 20 minutes after in which he told me he had gone and reminded me to tidy his affairs, haven handed his family to me at the last family meeting he called. I planned to check on him by 6a.m. But at about 5:30a.m, one of my brothers who lived with him at Obanikoro, Lagos, came to break the news to me at Ikeja, where I lived. One of the things he wanted was for his earthly remains to be interred not later than the Saturday after his departure. I obliged this wish for his funeral which we had only to two days to plan for. For this, I will ever be grateful to Mr Jide Ogundele, my colleague at The Guardian newspapers, Rev.Adenugba, who made Emmanuel church, Isonyin, accept the short notice, Brigadier Buba Maruwa (RTD), at that time Governor of Lagos State, who sent his chief press secretary, Mr Sina Ogunbambo, to represent him, even without an invitation, my co-siblings for their unreserved cooperation, many relations who waved funeral tradition for me and many friends who attended the funeral in full force as though we had planned it for months.
THREE: Like my father and his mother before him, many people do not want their bodies kept in the mortuary. So was a former boyfriend of a young woman who lived with her brother at 39 Elmina crescent, off Toyin street, Ikeja, Lagos. They had disengaged for some time, and she did not know he had died. They were both Igbos. His eldest brother lived in the United States. So, he could not immediately come to the funeral. Accordingly, he requested that his younger brother’s body be kept in the mortuary until he was ready. The departed brother tried to reach many members of the family to request that the burial be carried out immediately, so he could go his way. Apparently, something connected with his funeral had made him become earth-bound, which he must have hated to be. Finally, he turned to this former girlfriend of his in a dream, urging her to help him tell other members of his family to persuade his eldest brother to conduct the funeral immediately.
This young woman kept this dream to herself, assuming it was one of those stupid dreams. I was a distributor of some of the products her brother was importing in those days. These products included ALKALIVE GREEN, ALKALIVE RED, ALKALIVE BLUE and SILVERGEN. Alkalive Green was a mixed grill of about 60 green plants for alkalization and detoxification. Alkalive Red was for the purification and strengthening of the blood. Alkalive Blue was for calming and strengthening the nervous system, and for pain. Silvergen was colloidal silver that was absorbed from under the tongue into the bloodstream to fight and kill all types of germs. This young woman came from Port-Harcourt where the business network of her brother was well established to work with him in Lagos where the business was just been developed. When she knew about my interest in transcendental matters, she began to ask me life questions every time I showed up in their office. It was in the course of one of such meetings that she related to me the dream in which she saw her former boyfriend. I encouraged her to enquire about his well-being from members of his family. Lo and behold, he was dead and his funeral had not taken place. This young woman was almost devastated. I informed her to immediately narrate her dream to every member of his family including his eldest sibling. How the matter ended I do not remember. But it reminded me of one or two lessons I had learned about the departed.
I am narrating these experiences because we may assume those who died under the Ikoyi rubbles have gone for good. That may be why, within one week of his death in gruesome circumstances, the wife of Mr Femi Osibona, owner of the collapsed building in which he was killed, and his siblings are ferociously involved in a bitter battle over his exotic cars and other properties. These are people who should be mourning and possibly bed-ridden in the hospital because the dust of the gruesome death of their husband and sibling had not yet settled.
One of the lessons I was referring to is that we, the living essence, are attached to our physical earthly bodies with an astral or unseen SILVER CORD. This cord is similar to the UMBILICAL CORD which attaches a baby in the womb to the pregnant woman through the placenta. If the Umbilical cord is not severed, the baby is not freed from its would-be mother. If the Silver cord is not severed, the departing soul is not freed from the physical body it is discarding. When we still live in the physical bodies, the Silver cord is elastic, which is why we may be asleep in Lagos and find ourselves in New York in dreams. When the body is dead and the soul stands outside it, the Silver cord becomes inelastic, and the soul is bound to the body until the Silver cord is detached. Anything which happens to the physical body can still be experienced by the soul through vibrations that flow to him/her from the body through the Silver cord. This is why the cold in the mortuary freezer can be torturing to the departing soul. That is, also, why cremation is awful. That is why the souls may also feel the pain of Post Mortem Surgeries. That is, also, why embalmment, in which all the internal organs are removed and the cavity is stuffed with cotton wool or other material, may be an unpalatable experience for departing ones. Some do not even know they have “died”. They find themselves still existing, experiencing pain, and are confused unless they receive help to understand what is going on. How soon a departing soul will be freed from the Silver cord and from the corpse will depend on how light or heavy the soul is. Souls that are entangled with earthly matters and with many troubles to sort out with many persons on earth on account of attachments are usually heavy souls. Souls that are not entangled are usually light souls. The conditions of some souls are so heavy and bad that they are actually drawn back into the body they had existed. Imagine Mr Femi Osibona becoming terribly shocked that his wife and siblings are thinking less about him and more about his property, and wishing to express to them his disappointment! The only way he will be able to do this is to communicate with them through the physical body, using the brain. On the other side of earthly existence, the brain does not exist. That is why those who have departed can walk in and out of our residencies, even though the walls as the Lord Jesus did in the upper chamber after his Resurrection. We cannot see them with our physical eyes. We can only feel their effects when they are around, but they cannot touch us physically. To communicate with us in the death chamber, they require their bodies and the brains. As they desire to do so, they will be linked up with an appropriate power center that will encourage them to go on. They may be pulled back into the bodies and be unable to free themselves from it, since they voluntarily went in, and reside in there for months or even years witnessing the horrible decay of the bodies they had once priced highest over other values when they existed in blood and flesh. What a terrible fate!
FOUR: A 15-year-old girl whose experiences I am discussing with her mother heard knocks on the entrance door of their house one day two months ago. She went out to open the door, saw her mother, tried to embrace her but found that her hands passed through her mother, and then lapsed into a state of surprise and shock. She found herself back in the house sleeping on a couch then got up as the knocks persisted, and followed the exact processes she earlier undertook. This time, she embraced her mother, and the contact was physically real.
The news of 44 Gerrard Road reminds me of COMFREY, the “bone-knit” and tissue generating or healing herb of which not much is heard nowadays. Bone-knit refers to the healing powers Comfrey exercises in the healing of bone challenges ranging from fractures and rheumatism to arthritis and much more. The building disaster also reminded me of APPLE-CIDER VINEGAR which mobilises CALCIUM into fractured bones for speedy healing. Pain is almost inescapable in those circumstances.
GRIEF is in the domain of the heart, nay spirit! The history of the collapsed building is making many people angry, and anxiously looking forward to how everyone responsible for it would be brought to book. The owner of the property, Femi Osibona who died in the disaster has lost substantial money. So would the banks which financed did not professionally scrutinize the project. The engineers who resigned from the project may go free. But what about the ones who took over from them, believing they could add two plus one to make four? Then, there are the civil servants who are trapped in the net. Grief and anxiety will at this time trail many persons, living or “dead”. Trauma is an emotional response to an event. It may be immediate or long-term. In the 1970s, some corpses were discovered at the Anthony Underbridge on Ikorodu Road, Lagos. Till this day, about fifty-something years after, the images still tense me up wherever I am there!
The owner of the building, Femi Osibona, died under the rubbles. He will be remembered as an unwise man or as one of those rich persons who were made by money to be unable to think straight. That was the understanding of him by a 20-year-old girl. Had she all that money, she reasoned, she would stop the building at only five floors the foundation could withstand, and buy five more plots of land on which to expend the remaining funds. Or, if he wanted a skyscraper by all means, perhaps because he ran into more money while the construction was going on, could he not uproot the five floors and the foundation and reconstruct a foundation for a 21-storey building? Has the foundation not been excavated now in his absence?
The site will be haunted by grief for a long time to come. As a Christian, I believe in the continuation of existence beyond physical earth life. The Bible gives us many examples of it. A vivid example is the appearance of Moses and Elijah with the Lord Jesus at His Transfiguration. They were long gone from the earth and were with Him in non-earthly bodies. Jesus told His Disciples Elijah came back but men had done with Him what they wished. There would see an illogicality in the two images of Elijah, one of him at the Transfiguration and the other as John the Baptist, who the Disciples erroneously thought Jesus referred to as the reincarnation of Elijah. This discomfiture is corrected in the knowledge that it was NOT JESUS, but the REPORTING DISCIPLE, who reported that “….IT BECAME CLEAR ONTO THEM THAT HE SPAKE OF JOHN THE BAPTIST”. That was “interpretative” reportage by the Disciple and not the exact words of the Lord. Thus, we can infer that Elijah returned not as John the Baptist but as someone else long before the Transfiguration.
Forgive the digression. We are looking at the site of carnage, and cannot escape talking about life and death. As a person who believes in the continuation of existence after physical demise on earth, I am trying to imagine what could be happening to the people who died in that disaster. Femi Osibona invited his friend, WALE BOB-OSENI, who was to travel abroad later that day to visit him at No 44, Gerrard Road. Something must have linked them together for a common fate or the other man may have been careless about guidance to avoid Gerrard Road. We know “CARELESSNESS AVENGES ITSELF BITTERLY”. Under the debris and on the other side, outside of his physical remains, WALE BOB-OSENI must have been wondering about why he altered his travel plan. I learned something in this regard a long time ago from a gentleman who concerned himself about the world we do not see as much as he did the world in which we still live. At that time, I closed from the office between 1 a.m or 3 a.m. He said on no account should one transit from one place to another without first not physically clearing the route. Most people do this through prayer. His illustration touched me. Would a President travel on a route that its security details had not cleared? Does he arbitrarily alter his itinerary? He taught a group of us that, once we had prayed for our route to be cleared up of any mishap, we could still cause some challenges for our unseen friends who were helping us if we allowed in our entourage someone who was not meant to be in it.
We do not know the karmaic debt(s) hanging from the necks of people around us. We do not know if one or more persons were meant to depart in a gruesome circumstance such as what happened at 44 Gerrard Road.
•To be continued