How did this book come about… good question. I wish I knew. I wish could take credit for the information in it. In truth I have to tell you this information come from some place other than myself. The book, started out as a screen play. Two thirds of the screen play was written in just two weeks. There was times I was typing and had no idea what to write next, I found myself typing things I never thought of. So I truly think of myself as some kind of scribe taking dictation from some higher source.
There are pieces of me in the story. I do believe in reincarnation, even though I was raised in a strict fundamentalist Christian faith. A faith that didn’t believe in the concept of reincarnation and the immortality of the soul.
As a small child I too had a strange fascination with the Second World War. For me, I loved to build model German airplanes from the War. I didn’t care for the English, American, Russian or Japanese planes, only German. I loved to watch the war movies. I also remember feeling bad for the Germans in the movies. Since they were usually portrayed as people that were no more than animals. I thought to myself, “There were some good Germans too.” My friends and I would play world war two board games for hours on end. In fact up to ten years ago, I thought about the war every day. Yes, it was definitely more than a causal interest there. It was a strange kind of obsession.
All this was very strange because I was raised a strict pacifist. The Jehovah’s Witnesses believed in strict neutrality. I was hated in high school because of my stand against the Viet Nam war. I’ve been spit on and slapped in the face because I would not salute the American flag. My class mates would ask me “What if everyone, felt the way you did and not go to war?” To which, I would say “I guess there would be no more war!” My feeling was that God is not partial and which flag would Jesus salute if he were on Earth. I guess some of my class mates felt differently. It’s truly funny, that on this planet the acceptable behavior is to agree with war and killing. The crazies and weird ones only want peace.
I joined the ministry and moved to Salina Kansas in 1968. I was a conscious objector during the Viet Nam war and had a 4-D minister classification. From there I went to the headquarters of the Jehovah’s Witnesses and worked in their factory for four years. They paid us twenty two dollars a month, room and board. I was a total self-righteous religious zealot by the time I got there.
In 1974 I left the headquarters and got married. I was no longer the religious zealot. Just a family man with two kids. It was time to pass the thought system down to them. So every Saturday we would go door to door teaching them how to sell our religious ideas to other people.
1987, I went to my twentieth class reunion. Something a good Jehovah’s wouldn’t do but I did anyway. I called one of my classmates who was raised as Jehovah’s Witness too. He had left the faith in high school and joined the army and went to Viet Nam. I wanted to see him, so I called him up, to invite him to the reunion. He was surprised to hear from me. In the course of conversation he said. “You know, I went to Viet Nam and I don’t have any regrets!” To which I said. “Well, I didn’t go to Viet Nam and I have no regrets either.”
I found out at the reunion that at least five of my classmates had come back from the war and took their own lives. So at least a couple of my classmates had some regrets about the war.
Something interesting happened at the reunion. During the party one of my classmates came up to me and said “I really need to talk to you when you have a minute.” I was a little nervous about talking to him. As I mentioned I had few friends and not liked in high school because of my antiwar stance. Even though we had known each other for many years since elementary school, I had no idea why he would want to talk to me in private. I got up from the table and went to the lobby where he was standing. He had a strange look on his face. I really didn’t know if I was going to get a slap or a hug from him. He said. “You Know Keith, I went to Viet Nam. I thought a lot about you over there.” Here it comes I thought. “I thought about you when we were both in elementary school together. How we would all be standing there saluting the flag every morning and you would just stand there with your arms by your side saying nothing. I just wanted to tell you, I really respect you for that.”
There is many things I appreciate about how I was raised as a Jehovah’s Witnesses, besides their neutrality in all political matters. Yet in 2001 I left that thought system too. The reason is they too had the “us and them” mind set. They were right and all other religions were wrong. When I left their faith, I paid the full price. I left the “us” of being a Jehovah’s Witnesses and became one of the “them” a nonbeliever. Because shunning is a part of their believe system, I lost almost everything , all my friends, a sister of fifty years, a wife of 27 years and most of my business. I was shunned and haven’t been able to talk to these people in over fifteen years. It was so bad that when my father died in 2012 my sister wouldn’t even call me to let me know he had passed. It was “our way or the highway” and I was on the highway.
It all perfect. I know on a spirit level, I set this story up on the other side. So no sour grapes here. It’s my story and I help to create it, on a soul level.
In fact, one physic reading put many of the pieces of the puzzle together for me. After I left the witnesses I had a physic reading. The first question I had for her was about the war. “I think about the war all the time, why is that?” She said. “You were a solider in the war and died in it.” I thought, that makes perfect sense, now. I asked. “What nationality was I?” She said. “I see a gray uniform… you were a German.” That made sense too. So I asked. “What branch of service, was I in?” She said. “You were a pilot!” Since I liked to build model German planes as a kid. That added another piece of the puzzle. Then she told me something that I had no idea about. She said. “You didn’t like what the Germans were doing in the war and you killed yourself.” She went on to say. “You come from a predominately Nazis family and you didn’t have the courage to stand up to them. So you took your own life.” Wow, my life time as a Jehovah’s Witnesses made sense now. When I was born in 1949 the Nazis were all gone but there is a great Nazis like religion we can put you in. Your job, (like the mission impossible quote) if you choose to accept, will be to stand up to them and make a stand against the “us and them” mind set. What could be more perfect? That was exactly what I did. I was very vocal about my exit and leaving that faith. I was even on the front page of “The Oregonian” on March 22, 2002. I feel I stood up and did what I should have done back in the war. They say that suicides usually come back quicker than most to face whatever obstacles, they couldn’t get through. Since then, I’ve had many pass life regressions and channelings all confirming my world war two life time.
I’m not here to judge people and their Karma. I know I’ve been a warrior many life times. I know on a soul level I’ve killed and died for my believe systems, many times. What’s changed about me? I’m just not proud of it anymore. Is there anything to be proud about when it comes to war and killing? This “us and them” that I have been a part of, and the rest of the planet is enjoying so much is tearing us apart. I hope it will be different one day.
There are other real things that happen in the book. My father was the soldier that got his face slapped by my mother on the dance floor, for putting his hands in the wrong place. Soldiers did die by drinking poison, they thought was wine. Believe it or not, I talked to a woman whose husband was an interrupter during the war. After he shoot a German soldier, he did talk to him for a few minutes before he died. The dying man handed him a picture of his wife and two blond little girls to the man who had taken his life. He requested he contact his family after the war.
The other things like love at first sight have happen to me. Love at first sight is really recognition at first sight. The people you just met that you like or dislike on the spot are all things I’ve experience. All the things you know in your soul, that there is no explanation for.
As for Deja vue, even my father who was like Archie Bunker and didn’t believe in anything, even thought twice about it. He told me how he had gone to El Salvador with his wife. They were visiting a remote town that she grew up in. A place he had never been before and certainly never saw before. He told me how he knew the city like the back of his hand. He told me that he knew were a church would be even before he saw it. He said, “How could I know such a thing?” I said, “You must have been there before.” “No, I was never there before.” He said. “No, Dad you must have been there before.” To which he said, “Oh that bull shit!” I’ve heard of countless stories of people visiting places they feel a strange connection to.
I drove a taxi in Portland Oregon for six months in 2008, it was one of the most spiritual things I’ve ever done. I drove people to get chemo therapy. I drove strippers and prostitutes to work. I set there listening to people’s stories. We laughed and cried together. I found out that everyone has a story. Most the people in my cab totally believed their story was real!
So yes, we do make our own living hells by believing our stories are real.
One of the movies that change my life was Bill Murray’s “The Razor’s Edge.” A friend of mine bought Somerset Maugham’s book and gave it to me. It was amazing. It was written in the nineteen twenties and was nothing like the movie. It however truly opened me up to other thought systems and the concept of reincarnation.
When the student is ready the teacher arrives.
I hope this information in this book has given you a sense of greater peace.
On the other hand if you feel no connection to this information, that’s fine too.
As a Jehovah’s Witness I spent thousands of hours knocking on doors trying to sell our thought system to other people. I’m not trying sell ideas anymore. The opinions in this book are just that, opinions. Just another possible way of looking at things.
It’s funny to look back at ourselves and where we have come from. If I at 65 years old met myself at 21 years old and we set down and had a conversation together. If we exchanged ideas about our believe systems and our stories. Both of us would think the other were insane. Just like the twenty year old Art Garfunkel talking to Marcel Dalio at 107 years old, in the movie Catch 22. I feel like I have been both these characters in this life. The stupid kid and the wise old man. The ultimate “us” and “them” you and yourself.
What if you met yourself thirty years from now? You at thirty and you at sixty. How would you feel about yourself? What advice would you give yourself? My 21 year old self would have no problem pouring gas on my 65 year old self and setting me on fire. So really how can we take what we currently think so seriously? It’s just going to change next year, or next life time.
The only real constancy in life is change and people become the things they hate every day. Just ask Joe Costello.
Life is a journey and everyone’s journey should be respected.
So I guess we need to cut ourselves and others some serious slack. There is no “us” and “them” in yourself and there is certainly no “us” and “them” with others. There is only us.