My friend Pattie was telling me about string theory the other day, and how energy transfers between multi-universes or dimensions. Energy can’t be destroyed, apparently, just transferred or transmuted or whatever . . . It all boggles my blonde head. It reminded me of something Christ reportedly said: “In my father’s house are many mansions.” I’ve always thought that referred to various spiritual realms, or planes, where we might go when we leave this material world.

Such thoughts are on my mind today as I remember loved ones who have passed over — and haven’t sent back any messages to confirm that there is life after physical death. But then, occultists and others say the dearly departed can’t communicate with us, that they trip along on their merry way . . . until such time they are reborn or achieve nirvana.

I really don’t know what comes after, but I strongly suspect that we don’t sink in to eternal sleep with no further responsibilities. I don’t think we get off the hook quite that easily, that a form of Murphy’s Law is at work, and that we are reborn . . . back to diapers and all the aches and pains of living in the material world until we depart once more . . .

Seems odd to me that we don’t know for sure what happens, though the Bible says the mystery of death would be solved in the end times, which many consider to be the present.

But I do know that although death is part of the life cycle of all living things, it hurts so much when we lose our loved ones — even if we hold the hope that we will see them again, somehow, in another space in time. One of the most heart-rending moments I’ve experienced was at the funeral of an 18-year-old who had been killed in an auto/train accident. His family — father, mother, sisters, brothers — were devoted Jehovah’s Witnesses who believe in a literal resurrection on Earth. They gathered around his coffin and prayed, thanking God for his life. They were all so stoic . . . their faith carried them through what surely was the saddest moment of their lives.

Still, despite my belief in reincarnation or, alternately, in nothingness, I cry . . .