Sorry, if at the beginning, an overlapping occurs with the previous post. I need to start from here to arrive to the conclusion of this story… Initially it was posted in one post. But probably it was too long and the end of the story disappeared into the thin air without any explanation or apology!
Father Mikhail’s Childhood
Once I said to Father Mikhail that I was curious to know why his children and his wife had never spilled a single word about his parents, about The Sirotins, the seniors, and how he got his last name “Sirotin” that stemmed from word “Sirota” – “Orphan.” Was Father Mikhail an orphan or abandoned infant, and the last name “Sirotin” was invented during registration for the Christianizing ceremony?
Grandfather confirmed that there was a thing that prompted this last name, but he was not found under the cabbage in the monastery vegetable garden, because the story of his birth was very simple. He observed with some hellish curiosity, if I would continue writing down what he had to say. I did! And he continued his story.
— I was conceived outside the law, in the church. A drunk young man desecrated a nun who gave birth to the unwanted child. I grew up in a monastery as the son of a drunken janitor. According to rumors, his wife had died in childbirth – birthing me, the gadenish, “the bag of misery,” or “unholy creature, birthed by snake-type inhabitants of hell.”
— Do you know who was your father?
— Who would tell me this? They told that this was a passing by traveler, a stranger. But why she, the nun, my mother, did not tell me the truth? What she was afraid of? Gossip said that my alleged “mother’s” death because of me had broken the janitor’s heart. Bullshit, he had no heart.
— Did someone pay for your upbringing?
— I had no idea. But my so called “father” was always drunk, maybe someone did pay him for keeping his mouth shut. I grew up in muddy environment being beaten constantly. In that situation, my only way out was to become an altar boy. And this was my only education I ever had. And observing priests, I learned the church language and how the priests conducted the sermons. The janitor got rid of me at the very first opportunity when an army recruit showed up in our city. Janitor introduced me to him, saying that my dream was to become a soldier to protect our tsar and otechestvo – the land of our fathers.
The same day, I was taken into an army can for rookies, and both men proceeded to the kabak to celebrate the opportunity to turn some government money into a vodka feast. What do you want from me? This was how I became a priest after my discharge from army, as all I learned in my life was how to conduct church sermons.
—In your astral world, did you meet your mother?
—Yes, I found her here, and I marked her with an eternal curse, and promised to tell the world about her shame…
— What was her name?
— Do not dig too deep into this shit.
— I am sorry to hear it. Why did you curse your mother? Cursing her, you cursed your children and grandchildren, and your entire family! My brother and me too, your grand-grandson and his lovely daughters… As Bible says about cursing…
Suddenly I felt my blood boiling, I was his granddaughter after all! Strange words started to flow out of my mouth!
— I think, you know your father’s name, and you curse aristocrats and nobility, because your real father, the stranger, the passing traveler, rejected his paternity, and later, when your mother, seeking better life for you, met that man and pointed out on too obvious resemblance between your father and you, what that coward did? This similarity did not soften your real father’s empty noble heart. He accused your mother in harassment. And you never forgave neither your father, nor your mother that they had abandoned you, and now you try to keep your kids so close to you as possible. Your pain made you keep them home against their will, my God! Now I can see why you were doing this? Times change, changing us as well. Let your kids fly out of the nest into their adult lives.
— It is easy for you, being so much younger than me, to teach me! You are impolite, to begin with!
— Impolite? You better ask – how did your curses had ruined my life? I tell you how! I cannot remember my mother, who grow up in the atmosphere of your curses and fights hugging or kissing me at least once in my childhood. But I remember her shouts, full of irritation. They suggested that I was not smart enough, not quick enough, did everything wrong, she instilled this in me. My brother Vsevo told me once, that the cascades of evil shouts at home made him think that this was the normal way how people communicate at home. Strange, he was the Sirotin’s favorite, but suffered more than I did. Once he asked, when I lived already in California, and he was visiting from Estonia, if he seems completely normal to me? He said that he cannot get rid from idea that everybody else was better than him.
“Stop it, it is silly to think so!” I interrupted him. My brother was and is now nearing 80, a good-looking man, he did not become alcoholic or user, he kept steady job up to his retirement. He was married twice, was liked by women, his hobbies included mountain skiing. Today, nearing age 80, he still comes every year to USA to ski in Colorado skiing resorts. How did he come to conclusion that he was worse than others? But time to time the dark shadow of his grandfather’s curses were crossing his face revealing hidden nameless fears nesting in his heart, and blocking his real potential.
I said to my brother that I was thinking about myself the same thing, until America healed me from low self-esteem in most peculiar ways. Arriving to this country, I worked a year as a receptionist in a dry-cleaning enterprise. Tons of people brought their stuff for cleaning, paid in advance, and then arrived to pick it up. My work day lasted from 8 am to 10 pm. During the day, I had barely time to sit down to rest. I saw and talked to a lot of people. My English improved, and along the way, I noticed that having the same question in mind, I was examining the clients and waiting to meet an ideal person who did not have any psychological problems. But I never met one! All people had their problems, everyone had problems. An Armenian was convinced that a spot was left on his shirt because he was an Armenian national! I asked him, if he had put a stamp on his shirt “I am an Armenian national”, how the cleaners would otherwise know to leave a spot on his shirt? A lady without any specific national features, asked her money back for spots before examining her cleaned dresses. To cut long story short, I assured my brother Vsevo that there were no ideal people, some were hilariously limited, some stingy, some pretended to be stupid, some were conniving, some demanded a discount harassing me with comparison our prices with prices of the previous owner of this business, some were dying from self-importance, and a local priest was busy keeping holiness of his image submitting for cleaning his pants and underwear. Nevertheless, all together they were nice and funny crowd that healed me from my fear that I was worse than them! But if they get it out of me completely?
Today, I am over 80 and still afraid to ask money for my work… Once I was paid $150 for translation of couple of pages an easy text – from English to Russian, and I could not believe that I got so much money for so little work. Was I normal? And then I recalled that my mother used to mention with pride that she had never read a book in her life! Now I knew that this “pride” of despising reading came from her father, the priest! In my Estonia, I became a decent journalist and film critic pressing my entire life through hostile home environment that despised and hated books and reading… And today, facing soon transition to the next world, I am still afraid to ask money for my books, as if that money is burning my fingers, as if I had stolen time from God himself for working on them. The “pride” of living by his own mind and refusing to read was, no doubt, the worst hellish shadow left by moi laskivij dedushka on our family.
Sex in Monasteries
We took a short break in our conversation, and then Father Mikhail continued.
—You asked about sexual assaults in the Russian Orthodox Church. It was there, but I will not talk about it.
— How many altar boys served during the church sermons?
— There were two of us, Petya and I. Petya did not say anything to me, but, in my opinion, he succumbed to the temptation in hope to improve his life, and probably he achieved his goal. He was fed better than me. By the evening time, he was summoned somewhere, and he returned home at the dawn. He used to grumble and he did not look me into the eyes. Sometimes he shared a pie with me. And if they gave him more food to bring home, it happened that I got a chicken leg as well, it went down like a heavenly treat.
“How the Petya came into picture, was he an orphan, or also a “gadenish”?
“Do not ask me about him, his end was terrible. He was beaten to death by drank priests for being a gay, or for not keeping his mouth shut.”
In the monastery, altar boys were not entitled for vodka, but when the servants of God became drunk, they were pouring vodka violently down of our throats. It was how I became an alcoholic.
“During this type of feasts did you leave the nuns alone, or if they leaved the altar boys alone?”
“I would not say so. When nuns were drunk, they called us to themselves. And it seemed to me that they did not pray as they should. But this was not my concern. I saw there everything, so I got full sex education in the church environment.”
“Who were the nuns by social affiliation, from what social stratum did they appear?”
“Oftentimes, they were penniless orphans and widows, who came for the monastery for roof and daily bread. I was still small, and did not know much about such things. But sometimes something slipped through their gossip talks. Once, a drunken merchant was robbed and murdered by nuns. They buried the body, but not deep enough. I remember clearly, when at the spring time the snow started to melt, the corpse’s body parts surfaced becoming visible, after rain that white washed them. The involved monastics disappeared from the monastery. Our town was small but life was boiling in it. Merchants brought any kind of merchandise to sell, to trade, to resell and this attracted people to market places. I could not stand the merchants, I hated this rude, drunk and cynical crowd, but nevertheless, I did not realize that slowly I was becoming like them – cynical rude, a Russian drunkard!”
“Sometimes I think about Vysotsky, if he was beaten in his childhood, then there is nothing to be surprised that he had become who he is today in the afterlife. Beating children is a crime, I know, I passed it. My “papa”, the janitor, who hit me regularly was a retired Cossack. He was redheaded with cockroach-brown whiskers, and instead of “daddy”, I called him “the f… cockroach” – of course in my mind, or behind his back. He was a cruel man, he beat because when he got drunk he felt sorry for himself, and he did not beat me, because I did something wrong, but because he needed to pour his anger on someone.
“Whether there were animals in that monastery, children love animals, and animals love children, did you have some animal friend in your years in that monastery?
“Of course, there were any kind of animals, I liked horses and learned to ride a horse. Later, in my army years it turned to be a very useful skill.”
“Did army paid you some salary, did it help you?”
“Yes, I should put some pennies aside, but I did not do it, of course! Some squandered their salary playing cards, I treated so called friends for drinks and drinking parties. And it was a fun, the only fun I had in life. Army years were my only joyous years of my life.”
“Father Michael, how was your personal relationship with God?”
“I served God, but I did not believe in God! Instead, I believed in the existence of hell, as I had seen it, being drunk.”
“Did you crave for a real friend?”
“Of course, everyone does! But I had no friends, it did not work out, I scared off people with my fury and hatred, because I could not contain my boiling anger in my heart. It was always buzzing in me … And the older I got, the louder the buzz became. I have never met aristocrats personally, but I understand your question.”
“And how did you manage with nuns?”
“Well, we celebrated holidays together, and when they got drunk, things happened. I said that I saw everything especially on Easter feasts. There I saw things that a child was not supposed to witness. They did not hide anything, they said, learn, you may need it in future. None of them believed in God whom they served. The church folks were always drunk and thievish. I thought it would be better in Estonia, but nothing came of Estonia either.”
Jose Martinez, the spirit helper who showed up to be part of Father Michael’s healing team, couldn’t boast with parental support either. Disagreements with family’s way of life made him leave home and face his financial challenges alone. Somehow his story echoed Father Mikhail’s one. Both Russian army and American army discharged their heroes on the streets. But comparison of Mikhail’s and Jose’s stories forms the interesting juxtaposition of passive and active approach in search of solution what to do, if you are abandoned, penniless, without any prospects for future. The Russian man without faith in heart became angry cursing alcoholic and a priest in name only. He used up his observations as an altar boy, how priests conducted the church sermons, and imitating the priests, became the priest himself. The American man, Jose story will unfold below.
Once, in a hot summer day in year 2017, I was uploading to my computer some photos of Oxnard beach and beautiful residential area nearby, where I had spent a week seeking refuge from July heat. Suddenly I felt presence of a spirit who wanted a word with me. It was spirit of Jose Martines who said that he was attracted by these photos of houses where he was supposed to live, but instead he winded up in a cheap match-box apartment in LA Downtown. After honorable discharge from army, Jose found himself penniless and alone in LA.
“We, the Korean veterans, were neglected and thrown on the streets as kittens. I know that you did not like much the film “The Best Years of Our Lives,” but this film was about me from A to Z. And the film got Oscar, and it was a fair award. I know that you think differently, but it was my film, and my time.”
I tried to chirp in my meager sorry for being not too excited of the film “The Best Years of our lives” because of misuse of a real wartime invalid’s powerful image for inventing a politically correct, and in my mind, unethical ending of the film. But my sorry provoked only more irritation in him.
“No one can get that pain, Eetla, the Estonian psychic who introduced us on earth, helped me to overcome the thoughts about suicide. The worst was meeting Scientology people, they wanted Eetla to work for them as well, and there we met, and became friends. She refused their offer, and she was my only moral support, when I decided to commit suicide. She saved my life. Instead of killing myself, I started to heal and teach others and it helped me. One day, Eetla sent you to see me for getting some advice how to survive in the status of an immigrant. You were like dark forest, you knew nothing, but you turned to be a fast learner. But you were short-tempered, you could yell and shout and I grew tired from cleaning the same thing that you attracted with your nasty and senseless anger outbreaks. You felt it and disappeared. Nevertheless, you were invited to the celebration of my 60th birthday. But I died before the time from, of course, overdose. I already celebrated with that son of the bitch, mister X from Chicago, the white guy who was lazy and was not able to keep any job in Los Angeles. He was your friend as well, he was interested in your that time so hapless astrology, now it is so much better, but you already do way more interesting things. OK I have talked a lot. You saw, how I lived in my Downtown studio, washing 10 times a day my toilet after every client who went to shit there. You were an exception, you did not run in my clean WC, you respected what you respected, I liked you for this. Look, did you really can see something?”
“I have no idea, let me look.”
I could not believe what I saw.
“My God, Jose, you had poison, a poison liquid in your kitchen shelf, and you could add it in any cup you wanted, in my cup, for instance, as well!”
“So, you get it! You found my euthanasia kit with poison. Eetla got it for me to commit suicide. But changing my mind, I did not toss it away. I kept it in case, if they come to arrest me for drug possession. But how do I live, what do you think? I got drugs from Mexico, I bought my share and sold it to my clientele, and one day I overdosed myself for all my sins. …I had no idea that you get it so soon and so easy. Yes, you, get things.”
“You were bold enough to sell drugs under the nose of police, and probably, there were enough neighbors who reported that too many guests were milling around your apartment. When you overdosed, did they find money in your matrass?”
“It was stupid, I was rich, but pretended to be poor, and I should give you some money and connections, but I was not sure, if you were ready to clean some apartments. You did it later, and I regretted… I was not sure how to talk to you, and what to offer you.”
“You told once that you murdered 3 or 4 people leaving no traces behind, when you, out of desperation, accepted Scientology offer to work for them punishing people for leaving the Scientology establishment or refusing to pay what they owned to this “healing” organization?
“I killed more, about ten of them, and my work was traceless. I simply cut their silver cords, as I could walk out of my body freely, any minute, if this was needed. In all these cases, the heart attack was officially named as cause of sudden deaths. But then I started thinking what was I doing, and I started looking what else I could do for living… I was afraid to give away money, I should do that, but my stinginess was my problem, like it is the problem for many people from poor family, like yourself… Let’s work with stinginess for the starters…
“I do not know how to work with your stinginess, when I look at your future, all I see is that in your next incarnation in New York, you become a standup comedian. You will be good and you will be film actor.
“Stop it, stinginess is the enemy, work with my stinginess!
At that time, I was not able to help him. But still, time to time Jose showed up on my horizon, like in case of healing Father Mikhail, as if feeling some connection to the lonely soul of that sinner.
Yes, there might be a connection, both were left alone and helpless in society at young age. But the reactions to the same problems were so different, and so much depending on “the nation’s idea about itself!” It may determine how an individual will behave in their destiny’s pivotal situations. Later, this discovery made me write an article of degradation of Russian egregore, and its impact on the image of Russians.
St. Seraphim found me and asked again, if I would be interested in healing not so shiny souls, but ones who dwell in the lower levels of the astral world. “I have my list of souls who need help, and I know, you have your list of such souls. But are you ready to continue healing? «Придется копаться в жуткой грязи, уродством, порождением злобой, завистью, ревностью»! – “We will deal with terrible dirt birthed by anger, envy and jealousy. Can you handle this? Think before you answer.”
“Let me try out one more healing of Father Mikhail, and I learn, if I can digest what a healer must digest in such cases, maybe I am already too old and sick for this kind of free work!”
One more healing of Father Mikhail
It took place on January 10th, 2018, soon after I had written down Father Mikhail’s childhood stories. I declared that the theme of the healing would be search of thought forms reflecting the beating him as a child by his tormentor, the monastery janitor whom he called behind his back “the cockroach.”
As always, I started with prayer, asking help and protection from the Mikhail’s guardians. However, what was shown to me exceeded all my expectations proving one more time that our guides chose healing goal for a healer, not healer’s mental speculations. Instead of beating scenes, my third eye stood passive and in pitch darkness behind my closed eyes I heard the quiet cry of a baby.
Was someone crying behind the window? But people never stopped on our clean streets for a talk or rest, there were no benches for sitting there and letting babies cry. Nevertheless, the sound of a baby’s cry became louder. Suddenly, my “third eye” vision lit up, and I saw a country bed. The stretched hands of a nun were holding a crying baby: a newly born was taken away from the woman in the bed. The cry became heart breaking. I, who stopped crying decades ago, broke into tears watching how the baby was taken away from the nun who had given birth for her son, conceived in sin according to the Church believes at a time.
The visions about Father Mikhail’s early ages continued to flow. Now the baby’s cry came from the monastery’s large and so old-fashioned kitchen. The naked child was stretched out on a meat cutting table on a rag next to a milk jar. A joyful nun, pacifying baby with quiet lullaby, poured some milk into saucer. In one deft movement, she tore a piece of cloth from the rag on the table, wrapped crumbs of bread in it, dabbed the bread roll into milk and popped it into the mouth of a screaming baby. The child fell silent for a moment, and when it began to cry again, a new piece of torn cloth appeared in the hands of the merry nun, and the process of feeding the child in the monastery kitchen continued.
A pair of blackish eyes stopped joyful nun’s lullaby. Baby was packed fast into the remains of the rag beneath him and the bundle moved from kitchen table onto greedy hands of a man in janitor’s typical uniform. Then he saw a pack of money on the table… The janitor put the bundle with the baby back on the kitchen table, and sunk into money counting pleasure. Often wetting with saliva his right hand’s big and pointing fingers, he decided to recount the unusually thick pack of rubles. Then he put this pack into his pocket and started to move away from the table.
“You forgot something,” said the ironic voice of an older nun who appeared from nowhere. Janitor returned and pick up the baby who lifted its eyes and meeting janitor’s face started to cry hysterically.
Was it shown me exactly as I described it here, or it was my imagination that finished the description of this exiting transaction in the monastic kitchen? I was emotionally involved in my “3rd eye video” to this extent that there was no way to separate one from the other… Maybe I must to determine for myself, in what genre this story would unfold? In Bangsian style, or by rules of supernatural fiction, like some ghost story?
Suddenly, the colorful wave filled the healing space – my “third eye” space, or the 4D space, where we were allowed to train our imagination, so crucial to have it in afterlife. A strange voice told, “You would see as much rolls in your healing space, as you saw empty alcohol bottles during your previous healing.” The same voice added. “The time for this cleansing is over. Please, close the session and take some rest.”
I asked “But what about the “cockroach” whom I was supposed to whip today?”
“He was not a reason, but rather a consequence of circumstances!”
OK, I have imagination, I know it. But now I ask, what would happen, if I allow my imagination move forward into future of this soul, and seek an answer to the question, if the day would come, and he would reconcile with his mother, how it may look?
My imagination obliged, the scenes of reconciliation of Father Mikhail and his mother started to prop up in my mind involuntarily.
Yes, the day arrived, when Father Mikhail, now in spirit, took the ride toward monastery N, now the astral copy of once an earthy monastery where he was born. At the entrance gate, he asked about the nun named Vera and received a suspiciously swift answer that none of their monastics were ever been called Vera, in English – Faith!
“Is she still alive?” – was Father Mikhail’s next question, as the fierce denial of the existence of the nun named Vera means for him exactly the opposite. He assumed that they had expelled her from their ranks and decided not to talk about her. The icy look of the nun at the gate told him that if he would not be aided by share luck, he will return home empty handedly.
From afar, a cart loaded with empty metal cans was rushing against us. The metal surfaces beat against each other producing sound of timpani in a modern orchestra where ardent drummers beat them with a reason or without it, as if keeping the melody from sounding too simple and old fashioned for ears of contemporary folks. The nun at the entrance gate stopped the driver, and said to Father Mikhail that this carriage can give him a free ride to the city, to the church near the University.
“They want to get rid of me and my questions as soon as possible, something is fishy here,” thought Father Mikhail and soon enough found himself examining the crowd of the beggars who had positioning themselves on concrete porch around the church, as it was a custom to do down there during centuries.
… He recognized Vera immediately despite her being cloaked as a very poor commoner. As other beggars, she was begging for living, sitting on the cold concrete porch next to the legless cripple on the cusps. They seemed to be well acquainted, because time to time they exchanged a quiet word or two.
Father Mikhail found a bench near flowerbed across the church and being sure that busy Vera will not recognize him, sat to look what would happen next.
The church bells started to buzz inviting the parishioners to attend the evening sermon. And as the believers were moving toward church entrance, the coins and sometimes paper bills were falling into beggars’ outstretched hands or into cups set on the ground next to them.
When the flow of parishioners started to thin, out of the church appeared a young and joyous nun in professional outfit that looks familiar to Father Mikhail. She was heading straight toward Vera, and it looked that Vera was waiting for her. She produced from her professional uniform a sparkling bottle of vodka, and stretched it toward smiling Vera. It was a professional exchange. Vera surrendered to her two bowls, hers and the crippled one’s that disappeared into rich folds of her gown. It turned out that they were begging for collecting means for repairing the monastery. Now as the had given money away, they had free time, and they could enjoy a drink or two of sparkling vodka. The legless cripple was rubbing his hands joyfully.
But suddenly Vera, in astral world young, as if years had no impact on her, who was looking straight forward at a man on the garden bench across, froze, and then whispered, probably intending her words to the crippled man.
“Go away, my son has come to see me!”
“I will better stay,” he answered. “A presence of a witness never hurt.”
Father Michael looked absent minded, lost. Maybe he regretted coming so far. But the presence of the crippled man was holding him glued to the bench. Vera recognized him, and his hope to slip away unnoticed would not do anymore.
“Follow me,” — Vera waved her hand to Father Mikhail, pointing in direction of uncut bushes on the back side of the church.
Vera with sparkling bottle of vodka in her hand, was leading the group, and crippled man on his cusps were closing the rank, as if guarding the priest in case, if he would suddenly change his mind and attempt to escape!
The wild bushes formed a gazebo-like area with a small table and two simple garden benches. Vera picked from the ground some used paper cups, washed them under garden watering hose and proudly placed them on the table. The cripple had already opened the vodka bottle, and Vera poured equal amount of transparent liquid in cups. She said, “Na zdorovye!” – “For your health,” or “Bottoms up!” and swallowed her portion of vodka without hesitation, as a person used to down a galp of strong alcohol without the snack. The other followed the suite.
Nobody could produce a single word. There was silence. Crippled looked aside. Vera poured the second help of transparent liquid into cups. And they downed it again wordlessly. Father Mikhail looked at the crippled with vexation. The latter looked again aside but did not leave the scenery. No one had a word to say. Vera poured the third cup of vodka into cups.
Father Mikhail get it down, put cup back on the garden table, an old one, washed by so many rains for so long years that it has swelled, crumbled, and had decorative green moss spots here and there.
“Forgive me!” pressed Father Mikhail through his frozen lips.
The crippled threw up his huge brown eyes, suddenly burning, with a glow of unearthly light of forgiveness, and then he lowered them again, looking aside.
Father Mikhail asked suddenly, “Zhivesh to kak?” – “How are you doing?”
“I am fine. You saw, I am now a somebody, I raise money for reconstruction monastery church. I help Vanya, you see, he gets more money than I do, but he cannot get anything from store being legless. So, I take care of him. Now I have someone to exchange a word, to talk. He never rebuked me, did not shame me, he’s a good man. And you came along. I am now OK! You will be OK as well.”