Those who survive the loss of a loved one often wonder about how their beloved is faring in the afterlife. One of the most common questions that people ask when they seek the guidance of a spiritual medium is whether their departed loved one knows that they are missed.
The Communication Between Our Deceased Loved ones and Us..
Specific beliefs about the afterlife and the capabilities of spirits of the departed vary greatly. Not only do different cultures espouse different views about the afterlife, but there are also variations over time regarding how much interaction the departed are able to have with the living.
Some cultures believe that the deceased stay with us, helping to guide and protect us through the remainder of our lives. In this view, it is less commonly thought that the departed continue a relationship with the living, but in a less tangible form.
Other cultures carefully enact elaborate mourning and grief rituals to ensure that the departed understand they are missed and their guidance still welcome. How spirits perceive the feelings and thoughts of the living and what insight carries over into the afterlife are nuances that can also be highly individualistic even within a shared culture.
Do the Dead Know We Miss and Love them? Beliefs in Afterlife
Do the Dead know we miss and love them – Spiritualist Beliefs (Spirituality):
The Spiritualist tradition teaches that life is a continuum and that even the “dead” are simply continuing life in a different form. It is believed that the departed continue to carry an emotional connection, but that in the afterlife, the intensity of emotion is dimmed. Thus, it may not be that our departed loved ones are grieving the loss of life intensely, but that they do recognize the grief of their surviving loved ones.
It is also believed that the departed form protective “teams” that continue to help us with growth and healing. They are with us in a parallel realm as if watching us in a movie. They are able to understand how we are feeling and a great deal of what we are thinking and experiencing.
Spiritualists also promote mediumship as a form of continued connection and relationship with the departed. Many spirit mediums will confirm that when they communicate with the deceased, the spirits of the departed acknowledge being aware of how their loss is impacting the people they care about. Often, they try to help soothe the living to encourage them to work through their grief so they can live a full life.
Spiritualism also teaches that when a loved one passes, their spirit goes through a process of purification and adjustment. During this time, it is believed that prayers and positive energy sent to the spirit help with the transition. Thus, the connection is still important, even on an energetic level. The survivors’ grief doesn’t boost the ego of the loved one in spirit. Rather it adds energy to the healing process, helping to strengthen the journey in the afterlife so that a departed loved one is still able to connect with the living.
Various religious traditions follow practices of honoring departed ancestors. In this case, “ancestors” is defined loosely as people who have passed into spirit, not necessarily your biological elders. Some people offer plates of food or offerings of a favorite alcoholic beverage or tobacco. Offerings can also include prayers and healing. This helps the departed understand how much they are missed. As such, they are encouraged to stay in communication with the living.
Do the Dead know we miss and love them – Christianity/Bible:
It’s commonly held in Christian cultures that the deceased are welcomed into an afterlife, particularly Heaven, which is a paradise to reward those who lived a good life. Many Christians believe their loved ones are looking down on them from this realm and that they know what is going on with their loved ones still on Earth.
Distinct variations of this belief can exist through various sects of Christianity. Some believe in reincarnation, others believe their loved ones become like personal guardian angels, watching over them. It is widely accepted that loved ones in the afterlife are aware of the trials and tribulations of their surviving family, friends, and partners. Thus, it is also believed that the dead understand that they are missed.
Some follow strict requirements for grieving rites that are also believed to be both an opportunity for survivors to gain support but also a chance for the departed to see how much they are loved and missed.
Do the Dead know we miss and love them – Judaism and Kabbalah:
Ancient Jews, like the Greeks, believed in an underworld in which souls of the departed went. It was believed that communication with these souls was possible, yet this was outlawed by the Bible. Yet beliefs in the afterlife have evolved and are varied in the Jewish belief system.
For instance, by Medieval times, the introduction of eastern philosophy such as reincarnation became prominent in Jewish mysticism. This became part of the basis for Kabbalah. To the present day, beliefs about the afterlife continue to vary even among similar traditions. Yet prominent beliefs include that of some sort of judgment and afterlife. Within this context, it is believed that the departed have some level of insight into the lives of people who survive them and continue to live in the physical realm.
Some believe that through prayer and ritual, the living are connected to the deceased. Thus, during mourning, the deceased understand they are missed by the living.
While you could certainly seek the guidance of a spirit medium to determine if a departed loved one knows how much you miss them, there is really no need to confirm this. Our loved ones in the spirit realm understand they are missed and know the grief their survivors feel. They are continuing a path alongside you, but from a different realm.
Thus, they understand and see much more about you than you may be able to perceive about them. One way to continue communication with a loved one in spirit is to develop your own natural mediumship and intuitive abilities. Their energies are subtle, so you may not realize when they are with you. But have no doubt, they are aware of your feelings, especially your feelings toward them.