A lot has happened in the last two months and I haven't written anything anything about it and it is still a bit hard for me to do so.
I had just started my job as SCUBA Dive Instructor here in Cairns when I heard from my mum that my granddad is really not doing well. I booked a flight back to Germany that night and was on my way back home the next day. The next morning I arrived in Frankfurt and took the train home where my dad picked me up. We went straight to my granddad. I must say at first I was shocked. He seemed to be unconscious and didn't react to anything. I was just so sad and thought I came to late. After sitting with him for quite some time he opened his eyes again and I sure on some level he realised that I was there. I so glad that I had these moments with him.
Throughout the day the whole family came. Later in the evening he passed away very peacefully with all his family by his side.
The cremation and burial took place with the closest family.
The poem "Stufen" by Hermann Hesse, which has been on my own journey for quite some time, came as the theme for the ceremony.
Wie jede Blüte welkt
und jede Jugend dem Alter weicht,
blüht jede Lebensstufe,
blüht jede Weisheit auch und jede Tugend
zu ihrer Zeit und darf nicht ewig dauern.
Es muss das Herz bei jedem Lebensrufe
bereit zum Abschied sein und Neubeginne,
um sich in Tapferkeit und ohne Trauern
in and're, neue Bindungen zu geben.
Und jedem Anfang wohnt ein Zauber inne,
der uns beschützt und der uns hilft zu leben.
Wir sollen heiter Raum um Raum durchschreiten,
an keinem wie an einer Heimat hängen,
der Weltgeist will nicht fesseln uns und engen,
er will uns Stuf' um Stufe heben, weiten!
Kaum sind wir heimisch einem Lebenskreise
und traulich eingewohnt,
so droht Erschlaffen!
Nur wer bereit zu Aufbruch ist und Reise,
mag lähmender Gewohnheit sich entraffen.
Es wird vielleicht auch noch die Todesstunde
uns neuen Räumen jung entgegen senden:
des Lebens Ruf an uns wird niemals enden.
Wohlan denn, Herz, nimm Abschied und gesunde!
Unfortunately the English translation doesn't quite capture it
As every flower fades and as all youth
Departs, so life at every stage,
So every virtue, so our grasp of truth,
Blooms in its day and may not last forever.
Since life may summon us at every age
Be ready, heart, for parting, new endeavor,
Be ready bravely and without remorse
To find new light that old ties cannot give.
In all beginnings dwells a magic force
For guarding us and helping us to live.
Serenely let us move to distant places
And let no sentiments of home detain us.
The Cosmic Spirit seeks not to restrain us
But lifts us stage by stage to wider spaces.
If we accept a home of our own making,
Familiar habit makes for indolence.
We must prepare for parting and leave-taking
Or else remain the slaves of permanence.
Even the hour of our death may send
Us speeding on to fresh and newer spaces,
And life may summon us to newer races.
So be it, heart: bid farewell without end.
Bon Camino Opa!
The death of my granddad shook me quite a bit.
I feel like the life here in Cairns is not for me right now and so I decided to do a retreat in the sacred Taoism Wudang mountains in China and study Tai Chi. I plan to be there for about a month but maybe even longer.
So on Monday I'm off to my next adventure.