15/365 – Meditation Games #15 – Ashes

Developer: Owen Bell

Launcher Quote: “In the middle of January I went to a small waterfall hidden away in upstate New York.

With me I had a box. Inside were my mother’s ashes.

She had fond memories of this place as a child. It’s where she wanted to rest.”

The scattering of ashes has long been a tradition in multiple religions, often symbolizing a return to nature, to the origin of where you came from, or a journey back to someplace outside of the physical realm. The addition of it being done in a place of significance to the recently departed adds to the power and weight of the moment, one which removes the difficulty of a loved one passing somewhat as one imagines a last moment with someone who enjoyed being at the place of scattering.

This scattering is the action that is at the core of Owen Bell’s entry today, but the obvious other intention in doing so is a means for moving on, for putting a cap on the pain and anguish one feels during the grieving process for someone you love. The act of letting the ashes go is also a letting go of the physical sense of the person, but not of the memories and the intangible impact they’ve had on one’s life. Sometimes this can be very difficult – given the launcher quote and given the fact that I’ve done what the game has you do in the real world, I hesitated to do the scattering of ashes all at once, allowing it to happen gradually. I remember feeling similar hesitation when I had to do this, as if I was still holding on to them as they existed in front of me. Ultimately, though, I finished the task, silently tipping the container back up, allowing myself to reflect on the entirety of the life that I’d held so precious, and finally letting go and taking heart in the fact that while they were here, they played a part in shaping who I am. In that sense, even though we may scatter the ashes, a part of them will always remain with us and those that they touched in life, never being lost to the wind as the ashes are. It’s a heartening thought in the midst of sadness, and that’s clearly what today’s entry seemed to want to spark in its players.


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