Rita on suffering

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

F: 4:45 a.m. Well, Miss Rita, here we go again. Since I spent so much of yesterday sleeping – and wake up a while ago realizing I am well again – no reason to delay starting.

Always a pleasure to remember the feeling of being well. It’s easy to take for granted, no matter how much experience we have. Possibly that’s a good segue to our topic of the day, suffering. But first, a thought on yesterday’s experiment. You said you don’t care how I do it, handwriting or computer, but it felt different to me, perhaps not quite as connected.

R: You were not quite as connected. The method had nothing to do with it. You were ill, and that’s going to affect your perceptions and your abilities. But if you don’t mind the extra work of transcribing, handwriting has the advantage of being a little slower, a little more – well, it gives you a little time to sink into a given sentence as it is being expressed. Your defining characteristic is speed; therefore you experiences its limitations as well as its advantages. So something that slows you down a little is not an obstacle. For others, it might be. One size does not fit all.

F: Well, while we’ve been off-line, so to speak, Charles has been thinking about how to proceed, absorbing other people’s questions, thinking about what is most useful and most practical to try to learn. Before I ask the questions he posed for today, do you have any thoughts on the subject of what is the most useful? Or, come to think of it, would you care to point us toward the theme of the book – if it is to be a book – or of the conversations anyway?

R: Of course I have a theme in mind, but perhaps it is better if each person derives his or her own idea as we go along. The danger, you see, is that if I explicitly were to say, “the theme is—” then everything said after that point, not to mention before that point, might be forced into conformity with what someone assumed I meant by the theme. Fluidity in perception is much more important than consistency of thought. In fact, the effort to enforce consistency would be a great impediment. So, I think I will decline to state my intentions, and you will have to figure them out as best you can, in the only way you ever absorb new material – you will have to wrestle with it, question it, question yourself, be alert for your own possible unconscious assumptions and be willing to question them once they happen to come to light.

F: I can accept that. That’s my usual mode, I suppose.

R: Actually not, but we don’t need to go into that here and now.

F: Very well. Here’s Charles’ question as I rephrased it and he agreed, and a follow-up he added.

[Suffering: It’s difficult trying to reconcile “all is well” with the conditions in 3D. Some statistics: 45.2 million people are living in refugee camps, 21,000 people die of starvation each day, 500,000 people murdered in a year. Of course, I wouldn’t know this if I didn’t read the news on the Internet because it’s not my subjective reality. Is the 3D person choosing these circumstances? Is it true that no matter what happens, car accidents, cancer, etc., we in 3D are making the choice? Or, is non 3D making the choice and we in 3D are the focal point to see how we handle it?
[And the question from Martha fits nicely depending on the answer you get.

[“Every day I ask what in the world can be the purpose of all of the suffering in the world? After eons of time, haven’t these so called Larger Beings had enough of it? I’m sure their 3-D strands would appreciate a break from these never-ending plotlines of pain and war, disease and poverty, pollution and cruelty. And back to yesterday’s session, could she expand on the part about non-3-D entities that interact with us and how much influence they have as telepathic trouble makers or helpers?”]

R: As you may imagine, I see the question quite a lot differently now than I did when I was in the body. As you will remember, I was quite concerned about all these things, and I ached to be able to do something effective to stop it all, but there was so little I could do. Sending money to charities was about the practical limit to my ability, and that seemed so limited as to be almost pathetic. I kept up with the news, more so as my physical mobility became more limited and my world constricted. So it was a reorientation for me when we heard the guys first say, “all is well. All is always well.” It took quite a while before I came to believe it. At first I took it provisionally, in the way one does, tasting it, feeling how we respond to it. And I questioned them on it, I seem to remember, but gently. I was asking the questions, and if I got answers I didn’t expect or didn’t immediately understand or agree with, should I quarrel with the answer, or pursue it until I was sure I understood? And, in fact, over time I came to see what they meant, and came to at least provisionally accept it.

F: But we did not have you “there” to explain it to us.

R: We did, in a way, of course. I was here then as you are here now. But I know what you mean. So I will try to give the explanation that would have helped me then.

You, Frank, will remember the explanation about childhood trauma. But others will not, so I’ll mention it here. I was bemoaning its lasting effects, that could persist through a person’s entire life, warping their perceptions and inhibiting their choices – their real choices, available to them – and the guys reframed it, saying that if someone came into life wanting to experience a certain set of things, of which feelings, emotions, reactions would all be part – a childhood trauma that enabled / required them to continually call to themselves reminders, or triggers, that would lead them to experience it again would be very useful, assuring that they would experience the same thing, from slightly different angles, until they were through with it, either in that life or when the life was ended.

F: Or afterwards?

R: They didn’t say that, but it is true, in the form of unfinished business, it could continue into another life. And bookmark this statement, it is important. But to stick to the subject at hand:

It is in that sense that all is always well. Suffering is useful.

Now, that doesn’t mean that inflicting suffering is justified, nor that observing it unmoved is justified. One’s reaction to observing the suffering of others stems from one’s value system and one’s ability to feel. The fact that suffering is useful to the person suffering does not justify sadism or indifference.

However, the fact that suffering occurs in life is only to be expected in a world of duality. But this is a very tangled subject, with interrelated themes.

Justice of the world
Manifestation of hidden relationships
Delusions of competence

Let’s stop with just those three, for the moment.

The world is just. However, any particular time-slice is apt to be very unbalanced, full of what looks like injustices. It is as if you were, on Tuesday, to see all the week as Tuesday and think how out of proportion it is, for it never to be Wednesday. An absurd example, but I meant to show that any judgment of a situation made from consideration only of a present moment is necessarily going to be so constricted, so short-sighted, as to be wildly inadequate.

As an example, tell the story of the man at Timelines in 2003.

F: Mick had been raised by parents who were abusive and allowed him no free will whatever. He was punished for the most trivial things. After one of the exercises he relived a memory of a life in which he had done the same thing to others. The point was not to punish him, but now he knew what it felt like.

But as I’m writing that here, I’m seeing all kinds of reincarnation questions arising.

R: Defer them. The point is, the world never seems just, and at any given moment if probably never is just. But seen from a larger view it is and must be. Again, that doesn’t mean it is all right to be cruel or indifferent. It means, by all means express your compassion, but don’t think that because this person or that group of people is suffering, therefore the world is unjust. They in this lifetime may have done nothing to “deserve” what is done to them. But nothing happens to anyone that is not fully compensated, see it or not, believe it or not.

So, justice. But we had better stop here and continue another time.

F: All right. I must say, “manifestation of hidden relationships” was clear to me as I wrote it down, but now I have no idea what it means.

R: I guess you’ll have to stay tuned, won’t you?

F: I guess I will. Till next time, then.

9 thoughts on “Rita on suffering

  1. Frank and Rita, thank you for the elaboration. But it seems to me that after a few millenia humanity would have evolved beyond these tit for tat suffering plotlines. How could we possibly STILL have unfinished business? How does one build a life that’s happy and fulfilled, rich with purpose when the Larger Being is busy throwing old traumas with new twists at us (ok…me. I get it! I’m not perfect. I screwed up. I’ve felt both sides of the coin. Can I have a happy, healthy, fulfilled life now? And by extension, if I can have that, can the refugees etc get a taste of the good life too, closer to the top than the bottom of Maslow’s Hierarchy?)? Thanks for listening as I shake my fist at the Fickle Finger of Fate.

    1. Well , stay tuned for Rita’s response, but my immediate response would be, maybe things are more complicated and more interrelated than we can easily see from our 3D viewpoints. You ask, “Can I have a happy, healthy, fulfilled life now?” and my answer would be sure, why not? Is that what you really want? What’s stopping you, the nightly news? You limited idea of what a happy, healthy fulfilled life must look like? An ingrained idea that it can only come (if at all) at some later time?

      When i see people shaking their fist at the-way-things-are i think, which is more likely, that the universe has a problem, or that the person has a problem? (And believe it, i’ve been there too.)

      And, by the way, you’ll get a lot more from these conversations if you let yourself say, “well, what if what she says is true?” rather than letting yourself defend previous positions you have taken, no matter how close to your heart they may be. Don’t accept anything blindly, but if you don’t accept it long enough to examine it and understand it, how can you gain anything?

      1. No doubt what Rita is saying is true. I’m listening and trying to understand how it all works — the Big Picture, the Small Picture — as I have for the last 30 years of reading your books, Jane Roberts’ books, and all the rest. Somehow I’m still left with the questions I asked in my email. Apparently I have a huge blind spot and can’t make sense out of plain English. Looking forward to the continued conversation.

        1. i wouldn’t worry about it. As long as you are willing to be convinced, you either will be or you won’t. But if an answer doesn’t convince you, and you were genuinely open to it, what can you do but move on? Hopefully that won’t be the case, but i can say that i would never let someone’s authority (real or assumed or presumed) override my own sense of what does or doesn’t resonate. I’d say, stay tuned and continue asking questions, the harder the better, provided they are questions you would really like answered, rather than rhetorical questions designed to reinforce what you already believe. Not that you’re doing that; i’m saying, what you are doing is fine, and may lead us all somewhere.

          1. I’m open to hearing more about how 3-D life is structured. Years ago, I read David Hawkins’ theory that levels of consciousness can be calibrated on a graduated scale from 0 to 1000 and anything below 200 was of low integrity, fear, evil, despair, etc and moving towards 1000 was enlightenment. Don’t know if his theory is anywhere near truth, but I wondered why whatever Powers That Be who set up the Earth Game hadn’t gotten bored with the low integrity types of earthly experiences and didn’t just “mandate” that any souls incarnating would have a minimum of integrity level 200. Wouldn’t that boost evolution by leaps and bounds and end many kinds of suffering? I imagined some “angel” saying “geez Marth, thanks for the suggestion. We’ll take that up in our next committee meeting.” LOL

          2. well, phrase it as a question for Rita, and maybe we will get an answer. But bear in mind that your question assumes certain things that may not be true. Many people like deer because they are cute, and dislike sharks because they are killers, but would any of us really know how to set up a balanced ecology? Presumably predators and scavengers have their necessary role to play. Maybe it’s the same with people. (It would explain Congress.)

  2. …again, the conversation continues to hold my interest! It’s likely I will have to revisit these conversations many times, and wrestle w/ the ideas as they relate to my changing Worldview. I also read the David Hawkins book (“Power vs. Force”) several years ago; unfortunately, at the time I read it I was going thru a wretched stretch of anxiety, and “pegged” myself as a “100=FEAR” sort, w/ little hope (so said the author) of moving any higher in this lifetime. I later saw the danger of taking this (or any) “theory of everything” as Gospel Truth; I would just make myself miserable trying to fit into someone else’s “boxed Truth set” (I call it “trading one set of Truth Tables for another”).

    I’m now working with the idea of “finding out for myself”, as Bob Monroe was so adamant about, but it seems (for me) the idea must strike a chord of personal resonance…

    1. The only thing i know for sure (rightly or wrongly) is that we can’t demonstrate an idea’s ultimate truth or falsity — all we can do is say whether it resonates within us or not. If it does, might as well follow. If you don’t know where you came from, where you’re going, or where you happen to be at the moment, are you lost or just adventuring? In either case, why not follow your feelings, since you have nothing better to go on?

      recently i saw someone quoting Emily Dickenson to the effect that the sailor can’t see north, but he knows his compass can.

      1. Thanks Frank; I do like the idea of following feelings (“emotional guidance system”, I’ve heard), and this is important for me in these days of what I’d call “Truth-Mongering” on so many issues. There are times, lately, when I do feel quite “lost”; I have to remind myself that (likely) I can never truly be “lost”–just in a bit of fog–but that compass still indicates North!

        Congrats on the move to your new place!


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