Jonathan now remembered his given name, Ahat-Ohal-Kum; as gradually the dormant fields of his ancient lineage—his eons of engagement on uncounted worlds—began to ebb back into his consciousness. As in the biblical story of the Prodigal Son, returning to where he had started and knowing the place for the first time, the lost years of his wandering in the desert of amnesia on Planet Earth were seen in the light of what had come before; and his experience living like a human on Earth in turn illuminated all the eons in which he had adjudicated the fate of countless civilizations across the galaxies.
Like a figurine reassembling itself and rising from the marble floor on which it had lain shattered, Ahat-Ohal-Kum reappraised his immense journey across time and space. Even while he conducted this review and became reacquainted with the footprints that remained in his consciousness, he listened to the attempts of his two fellow mentors to fill him in, to excuse themselves, to blame him for it all, and to plead for his help. He allowed them to get some of their panic off their chests and then uttered a single word.
He didn’t utter this word in anger, or even as a command, although he was clearly expressing his certainty that from henceforth, he would be at the center of all further attempts to right the ship of Earth, as it floundered in the high seas of Galactic Time and Space.
He slid open the door of the wheelhouse, stepped onto the landing at the top of the stairs and made his way up a ladder to the roof. Then, sitting cross-legged on the ship’s high point, he gazed out across the Mediterranean Sea, and with sea breezes ruffling his hair, he spoke psychically with the visitors from the Council for Planetary Evolution.
“First, let me apologize for putting you in a position from which you felt it necessary to intervene in the life of this planet. It’s entirely on me that you had to come here and—with no preparation for doing so—respond to the situation of a species tottering at the technological edge and in whom massive indifference to other forms of life has been normalized. I have not yet discovered all the reasons that I went AWOL for centuries but now that I am back, I confirm that you were right to believe that the situation requires some kind of intervention. However, the one you have enacted makes it clear that you do not have the knowledge of the human species needed to decide what form our intersession must take.”
As Jonathan gradually reentered the forgotten being of Ahat-Ohal-Kum–and drew on his extensive knowledge of the many forms taken by the sacred dimensions of life–he felt a profound sadness that the human race was so far along a path, which endangered their shining potential; a potential that still flourished in many individuals alive right now. This precarious juncture in the evolution of species was well known to him, but in his many visitations across the galaxies, this small, blue planet now lay closest to his heart.
He understood that his interactions and affectionate engagements with thousands upon thousands of human beings, during the time he had lived among them, now robbed him of the objectivity that mentors needed to bring to their life-and-death decisions. At the same time, he knew in his deepest being that this very contact gave him—if any outsider could have such knowledge—a special understanding of their rare potential.
He thought of humanity as a precious infant toward whom the future was opening its arms in welcome. That infant might have an incurable disease and be destined to die young; even while other beings living in orbit around their distant stars, with less promise, lived to a ripe old age. But he refused to believe that such an aborted destiny was already inescapable. And, even if there was no longer any way to stay the hand of Time from drawing a curtain across their brief appearance in the dance of creation, they deserved to be cherished until that final gasp.
As Ahat-Ohal-Kum allowed his thoughts to travel down this path, he opened his mind to the many who were listening and invited them to join in the task so urgently calling out to all beings who cared about their Mother Earth. There were hundreds of human beings present from different parts of the world, different belief systems, different levels of intelligence, all present with one heart; each one of them from traditions and cultures among which he had himself lived.
Once he was sure that those hundred of being were able to understand, he asked them to bear with him as he tried to reground himself in the field of experience that he had abandoned thousands of years earlier; he assured them that he was in no danger of losing his connections with the beings of Earth, but that his deep engagement with this planet needed to be balanced within the wider understanding of time and space that had brought him to Earth many thousands of years ago. And, while the future of this planet obviously hung precariously in the balance, it could not, and would not, be three beings from elsewhere—who were not themselves children of Gaia–who determined that future.
“It all rests with beings like you, who are those children,” he declared.
“I have not met you all. But I have known many of your ancestors—genetically and spiritually—very well. Perhaps there will be time later for us to reminisce about your tribes and traditions, your faith and deepest affinities, but we all know that the future of your planet and of your species is holding on by a slim thread above the implacable sword of impermanence, which awaits all who are born in any universe.
“All of us who have walked this earth have this in common: we have learned our most precious lessons from others who have cared enough to share them with us. I did not fully understand this until I came here. It’s not only on Earth that the importance of love is recognized. And there are many worlds on which this understanding has penetrated more securely, into the shared values of entire civilizations, than has happened here; worlds on which the well-being of each individual is firmly understood to depend on the well-being of everyone. On each of these planets, a rational act of love is recognized as necessary so that each individual can have an opportunity to realize their potential.”
Ahat paused to feel the warm waves of understanding rolling across the shorelines of the many minds assembled. Then he continued.
“But there is a capacity present in your species that goes beyond that. It goes beyond the rational self-interest of cooperation and collaboration. It is most fully developed when there is less to go around and when it includes those who are different and condemned as lesser. That is the treasure that we must protect.
“There is much to do in the next 24 hours. I would like to suggest that we divide that work up among us now and then meet at this time tomorrow–whenever that is in your part of the world. Then we will meet again and share what we have learned with one another. I’ll leave it to you to find your natural peers among those who are assembled here. Each of us has psychic abilities or we couldn’t be communicating with one another. But we are also part of communities, whose fate now rests in our hands. Let’s talk with them, reassure them if we can, and discover which elements in their lives are most important to them.
“The collective consciousness is telling most human beings today that there are forces allied against their aspirations which are too strong to resist. Therefore, a question that hangs in the balance is this: can enough people remember that the quality of their future lives really resides inside their own hearts and minds?
“Since so much initial damage has already been done, I suggest that we leave the blindness in place for another day. It may give some a chance to make friends with their own inner being and to remember that they have the power to affect the future for themselves, and for all of us.”
Then Ahat opened his eyes, climbed down from the roof of the ferry, and rejoined this psychic friend on deck.
“So, tell me, what are you hearing from the people around you?”