Here is the short film of Richard Darlington (my Dad) speaking about the deep path and purpose of his life. We made the film in February 2023, when I didn't go to the Amazon with Ya'Acov. He felt that the true essence of his life and his being had been represented in this film and this helped him let go when his time came, a few month's later. I'm so glad we did it when he still could. And yes that is Sir Terry Waite, who is an old friend and colleague of Richard's in the Emmaus UK project. Deep thanks to film maker Emilio Mula and all who supported this project (see below).
Richard Darlington: 19.4.1933 - 04.07.2023
In February this year I (Susannah) interviewed Richard Darlington (my ageing father) about his life and what he'd like to pass on from it in terms of what he had learnt and experienced. His capacity to manifest audacious visions for the wellbeing of people and planet had always impressed me. I'm aware of how many of us struggle with finding the courage to step forward and risk failure, and wanted to ensure that what he had learnt did not die with him.
We had together come up with the question: "What do you distil from your life that you'd like to pass onto future generations?". He'd taken that question very deeply into his heart and when Emilio rolled up with the cameras to film the interview, Dad was primed and ready to share.
We both knew his final era had come or was coming, but, of course, you never know the time scale. His capacity to defy the odds and be, once again a "medical marvel" (in the words of my cousin Kerry) was such that it felt very unpredictable. This joint project turned out to be deeply meaningful for both him and me. He felt that the film had distilled his essence and was content in feeling that he and his life's meaning had been received, understood and shared.
As it turned out, Richard went into palliative care at home (next door to Susannah and Ya'Acov) at the start of June 2023. During the last month of his life he slowly approached his death with humour, steadiness and acceptance, During this time he frequently said how glad he had been that we made this film when we did. He felt it summed him up. "That's me!" he joyously said to a mutual friend. Knowing that his message was going to be there for future generations, that he had understood, articulated and shared the "through line" of his own life seems to have given him an ease about letting go. More about that journey in "Susannah's Posts".
Of all the embodied listening projects I have been part of, this one feels the most deeply important and satisfying. So if there is one thing I would like to pass on to others from this experience it is that if you have any impulse at all to ask your elders about the meaning of their lives don't wait! Do it now whilst they are still here. I bet unexpected meaning awaits you too if you sincerely engage in this process and really listen.
You can also watch it on YouTube: "My Road to Emmaus Mossley".
TO WATCH THE TRAILER:
Susannah Darling Khan (Richard Darlington's daughter) asked film-maker Emilio Mula to film an interview between her and Richard about his life and work with public participation (in housing) and Emmaus UK (a project with formerly homeless people) for the occasion of his 90th birthday.
The picture above is of Richard with Terry Waite (President of Emmaus) at the unveiling of the Richard Darlington plaque to honour him as founder of Emmaus Mossley.
The intention of this film is to:
With thanks to everyone who supported this project: Ya'Acov Darling Khan, Martin and Sharon Darlington and all the crowd funders, Emmaus Mossley, and everyone who is in the film, Emilio Mula the film maker and Richard Darlington himself.
You can also find out more about Susannah's Embodied Listening which is part of what she brings to this interview.
Susannah Daring Khan
"*" indicates required fields