Wait, go back to that comment about making decisions at many different levels. You said that if I wanted life to settle down, I should stop changing my mind about who I am and who I wish to be. When I said that may not be easy, You made the observation that all of us are making our choices at many different levels. Can You elaborate on that? What does that mean? What are the implications?
If all you desired is what your soul desired, everything would be very simple. If you listened to the part of you which is pure spirit, all of your decisions would be easy, and all the outcomes joyous. That is because . . .
. . . the choices of spirit are always the highest choices.
They don’t need to be second-guessed. They don’t need to be analyzed or evaluated. They simply need to be followed, acted on.
Yet you are not only a spirit. You are a Triune Being made up of body, mind, and spirit. That is both the glory and the wonder of you. For you often make decisions and choices at all three levels simultaneously–and they by no means always coincide.
It is not uncommon for your body to want one thing, while your mind seeks another, and your spirit desires yet a third. This can be especially true of children, who are often not yet mature enough to make distinctions between what sounds like “fun” to the body, and what makes sense to the mind–much less what resonates with the soul. So the child waddles into the street.
Now, as God, I am aware of all your choices–even those you make subconsciously. I will never interfere with them, but rather, just the opposite. It is My job to ensure that your choices are granted. (In truth, you grant them to your Self. What I have done is put a system into place that allows you to do that. This system is called the process of creation, and is explained in detail in Book 1.)
When your choices conflict–when body, mind, and spirit are not acting as one–the process of creation works at all levels, producing mixed results. If, on the other hand, your being is in harmony, and your choices are unified, astonishing things can occur.
Your young people have a phrase–“having it all together”–which could be used to describe this unified state of being.
There are also levels within levels in your decision making. This is particularly true at the level of the mind.
Your mind can, and does, make decisions and choices from one of at least three interior levels: logic, intuition, emotion–and sometimes from all three– producing the potential for even more inner conflict.
And within one of those levels–emotion–there are five more levels. These are the five natural emotions: grief, anger, envy, fear, and love.
And within these, also, there are two final levels: love and fear.
The five natural emotions include love and fear, yet love and fear are the basis of all emotions. The other three of the five natural emotions are outgrowths of these two.
Ultimately, all thoughts are sponsored by love or fear. This is the great polarity. This is the primal duality. Everything, ultimately, breaks down to one of these. All thoughts, ideas, concepts, understandings, decisions, choices, and actions are based in one of these. And, in the end, there is really only one.
In truth, love is all there is. Even fear is an outgrowth of love, and when used effectively, expresses love.
Fear expresses love?
In its highest form, yes. Everything expresses love, when the expression is in its highest form. Does the parent who saves the child from being killed in traffic express fear, or love?
Well, both, I suppose. Fear for the child’s life, and love–enough to risk one’s own life to save the child.
Precisely. And so here we see that fear in its highest form becomes love . . . is love . . . expressed as fear.
Similarly, moving up the scale of natural emotions, grief, anger, and envy are all some form of fear, which, in turn, is some form of love.
One things leads to another. Do you see?
The problem comes in when any of the five natural emotions become distorted. Then they become grotesque, and not recognizable at all as outgrowths of love, much less as God, which is what Absolute Love is.
I’ve heard of the five natural emotions before–from my wonderful association with Dr. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross. She taught me about them.
Indeed. And it was I who inspired her to teach about this.
So I see that when I make choices, much depends on “where I’m coming from,” and that where I’m “coming from” could be several layers deep.
Yes, that is what is so.
Please tell me–I would like to hear it again, because I’ve forgotten much of what Elisabeth taught me–all about the five natural emotions.
Grief is a natural emotion. It’s that part of you which allows you to say goodbye when you don’t want to say goodbye; to express–push out, propel–the sadness within you at the experience of any kind of loss. It could be the loss of a loved one, or the loss of a contact lens.
When you are allowed to express your grief, you get rid of it. Children who are allowed to be sad when they are sad feel very healthy about sadness when they are adults, and therefore usually move through their sadness very quickly.
Children who are told, “There, there, don’t cry,” have a hard time crying as adults. After all, they’ve been told all their life not to do that. So they repress their grief.
Grief that is continually repressed becomes chronic depression, a very unnatural emotion.
People have killed because of chronic depression. Wars have started, nations have fallen.
Anger is a natural emotion. It is the tool you have which allows you to say, “No, thank you.” It does not have to be abusive, and it never has to be damaging to another.
When children are allowed to express their anger, they bring a very healthy attitude about it to their adult years, and therefore usually move through their anger very quickly.
Children who are made to feel that their anger is not okay–that it is wrong to express it, and, in fact, that they shouldn’t even experience it–will have a difficult time appropriately dealing with their anger as adults.
Anger that is continually repressed becomes rage, a very unnatural emotion.
People have killed because of rage. Wars have started, nations have fallen.
Envy is a natural emotion. It is the emotion that makes a five-year-old wish he could reach the doorknob the way his sister can–or ride that bike. Envy is the natural emotion that makes you want to do it again; to try harder; to continue striving until you succeed. It is very healthy to be envious, very natural. When children are allowed to express their envy, they bring a very healthy attitude about it to their adult years, and therefore usually move through their envy very quickly. Children who are made to feel that envy is not okay–that it is wrong to express it, and, in fact, that they shouldn’t even experience it–will have a difficult time appropriately dealing with their envy as adults.
Envy that is continually repressed becomes jealousy, a very unnatural emotion.
People have killed because of jealousy. Wars have started, nations have fallen.
Fear is a natural emotion. All babies are born with only two fears: the fear of falling, and the fear of loud noises. All other fears are learned responses, brought to the child by its environment, taught to the child by its parents. The purpose of natural fear is to build in a bit of caution. Caution is a tool that helps keep the body alive. It is an outgrowth of love. Love of Self.
Children who are made to feel that fear is not okay–that it is wrong to express it, and, in fact, that they shouldn’t even experience it–will have a difficult time appropriately dealing with their fear as adults.
Fear that is continually repressed becomes panic, a very unnatural emotion.
People have killed because of panic. Wars have started, nations have fallen.
Love is a natural emotion. When it is allowed to be expressed, and received, by a child, normally and naturally, without limitation or condition, inhibition or embarrassment, it does not require anything more. For the joy of love expressed and received in this way is sufficient unto itself. Yet love which has been conditioned, limited, warped by rules and regulations, rituals and restrictions, controlled, manipulated, and withheld, becomes unnatural.
Children who are made to feel that their natural love is not okay–that it is wrong to express it, and, in fact, that they shouldn’t even experience it–will have a difficult time appropriately dealing with love as adults.
Love that is continually repressed becomes possessiveness, a very unnatural emotion. People have killed because of possessiveness. Wars have started, nations have fallen. And so it is that the natural emotions, when repressed, produce unnatural reactions and responses. And most natural emotions are repressed in most people. Yet these are your friends. These are your gifts. These are your divine tools, with which to craft your experience.
You are given these tools at birth. They are to help you negotiate life.
Why are these emotions repressed in most people?
They have been taught to repress them. They have been told to.
Their parents. Those who have raised them.
Why? Why would they do that?
Because they were taught by their parents, and their parents were told by theirs.
Yes, yes. But why? What is going on?
What is going on is that you have the wrong people doing the parenting.
What do you mean? Who are the “wrong people”?
The mother and the father.
The mother and the father are the wrong people to raise the children?
When the parents are young, yes. In most cases, yes. In fact, it’s a miracle that so many of them do as good a job as they do.
No one is more ill equipped to raise children than young parents. And no one knows this, by the way, better than young parents.
Most parents come to the job of parenting with very little life experience. They’re hardly finished being parented themselves. They’re still looking for answers, still searching for clues.
They haven’t even discovered themselves yet, and they’re trying to guide and nurture discovery in others even more vulnerable than they. They haven’t even defined themselves, and they’re thrust into the act of defining others. They are still trying to get over how badly they have been mis-defined by their parents.
They haven’t even discovered yet Who They Are, and they’re trying to tell you who you are. And the pressure is so great for them to get it right–yet they can’t even get their own lives “right.” So they get the whole thing wrong–their lives, and the lives of their children.
If they’re lucky, the damage to their children won’t be too great. The offspring will overcome it–but not, probably, before passing some on to their offspring.
Most of you gain the wisdom, the patience, the understanding, and the love to be wonderful parents after your parenting years are over.
Why is this? I don’t understand this. I see that Your observation is in many cases correct, but why is this?
Because young child-makers were never intended to be child-raisers. Your child-raising years should really begin when they are now over.
I’m still a little lost here.
Human beings are biologically capable of creating children while they are children themselves–which, it may surprise most of you to know, they are for 40 or 50 years.
Human beings are “children themselves” for 40 or 50 years?
From a certain perspective, yes. I know this is difficult to hold as your truth, but look around you. Perhaps the behaviors of your race might help prove My point.
The difficulty is that in your society, you are said to be “all grown up” and ready for the world at 21. Add to this the fact that many of you were raised by mothers and fathers who were not much older than 21 themselves when they began raising you, and you can begin to see the problem.
If child-bearers were meant to be child-raisers, child bearing would not have been made possible until you were fifty!
Child bearing was meant to be an activity of the young, whose bodies are well developed and strong. Child raising was meant to be an activity of the elders, whose minds are well developed and strong.
In your society you have insisted on making child-bearers responsible for child raising–with the result that you’ve made not only the process of parenting very difficult, but distorted many of the energies surrounding the sexual act as well as.
Uh . . . could You explain?
Many humans have observed what I’ve observed here. Namely, that a good many humans–perhaps most –are not truly capable of raising children when they are capable of having them. However, having discovered this, humans have put in place exactly the wrong solution.
Rather than allow younger humans to enjoy sex, and if it produces children, have the elders raise them, you tell young humans not to engage in sex until they are ready to take on the responsibility of raising children. You have made it “wrong” for them to have sexual experiences before that time, and thus have created a taboo around what was intended to be one of life’s most joyful celebrations.
Of course, this is a taboo to which offspring will pay little attention–and for good reason: it is entirely unnatural to obey it.
Human beings desire to couple and copulate as soon as they feel the inner signal which says they are ready. This is human nature.
Yet their thought about their own nature will have more to do with what you, as parents, have told them than about what they are feeling inside. Your children look to you to tell them what life is all about.
So when they have their first urges to peek at each other, to play innocently with each other, to explore each other’s “differences,” they will look to you for signals about this. Is this part of their human nature “good”? Is it “bad”? Is it approved of? Is it to be stifled? Held back? Discouraged? It is observed that what many parents have told their offspring about this part of their human nature has had its origin in all manner of things: what they were told; what their religion says; what their society thinks–everything except the natural order of things.
In the natural order of your species, sexuality is budding at anywhere from age 9 to age 14. From age 15 onward it is very much present and expressing in most human beings. Thus begins a race against time–with children stampeding toward the fullest release of their own joyful sexual energy, and parents stampeding to stop them.
Parents have needed all the assistance and all the alliances they could find in this struggle, since, as has been noted, they are asking their offspring to not do something that is every bit a part of their nature.
So adults have invented all manner of familial, cultural, religious, social, and economic pressures, restrictions, and limitations to justify their unnatural demands of their offspring. Children have thus grown to accept that their own sexuality is unnatural. How can anything that is “natural” be so shamed, so always-stopped, so controlled, held at bay, restrained, bridled, and denied?
Well, I think You’re exaggerating a bit here. Don’t You think You’re exaggerating?
Really? What do you think is the impact on a four- or five-year-old child when parents won’t even use the correct name for certain of their body parts? What are you telling the child about your level of comfort with that, and what you think theirs should be?
Uh . . .
Yes . . . “uh . . .” indeed.
Well, “we just don’t use those words,” as my grammy used to say. It’s just that “wee-wee” and “your bottom” sounds better.
Only because you have so much negative “baggage” attached to the actual names of these body parts that you can barely use the words in ordinary conversation.
At the youngest ages, of course, children don’t know why parents feel this way, but merely are left with the impression, the often indelible impression, that certain body parts are “not okay,” and that anything having to do with them is embarrassing–if not “wrong.”
As children grow older and move into their teens, they may come to realize that this is not true, but then they are told in very clear terms about the connection between pregnancy and sexuality, and about how they will have to raise the children they create, and so they now have another reason for feeling that sexual expression is “wrong”–and the circle is complete. What this has caused in your society is confusion and not a little havoc–which is always the result of fooling around with nature.
You have created sexual embarrassment, repression, and shame–which has led to sexual inhibition, dysfunction, and violence.
You will, as a society, always be inhibited about that over which you are embarrassed; always be dysfunctional with behaviors which have been repressed, and always act out violently in protest of being made to feel shame about that over which you know in your heart you should never have felt shame at all.
Then Freud was on to something when he said that a huge amount of the anger in the human species might be sexually related–deep-seated rage over having to repress basic and natural physical instincts, interests, and urges.
More than one of your psychiatrists has ventured as much. The human being is angry because it knows it should feel no shame over something that feels so good–and yet it does feel shame, and guilt.
First, the human becomes angry with the Self for feeling so good about something which is supposed to be so obviously “bad.”
Then, when they finally realize they’ve been duped–that sexuality is supposed to be a wonderful, honorable, glorious part of the human experience–they become angry with others: parents, for repressing them, religion for shaming them, members of the opposite sex for daring them, the whole society for controlling them.
Finally, they become angry with themselves, for allowing all of this to inhibit them. Much of this repressed anger has been channeled into the construction of distorted and misguided moral values in the society in which you now live–a society which glorifies and honors, with monuments, statues, and commemorative stamps, films, pictures, and TV programs, some of the world’s ugliest acts of violence, but hides–or worse yet, cheapens–some of the world’s most beautiful acts of love.
And all of this–all of this–has emerged from a single thought: that those who bear children, bear also the sole responsibility for raising them.
But if the people who have children aren’t responsible for raising them, who is?
The whole community. With special emphasis on the elders.
In most advanced races and societies, elders raise the offspring, nurture the offspring, train the offspring, and pass on to the offspring the wisdom, teachings, and traditions of their kind. Later, when we talk about some of these advanced civilizations, I’ll touch on this again.
In any society where producing offspring at a young age is not considered “wrong”–because the tribal elders raise them and there is, therefore, no sense of overwhelming responsibility and burden–sexual repression is unheard of, and so is rape, deviance, and social-sexual dysfunction.
Are there such societies on our planet?
Yes, although they have been disappearing. You have sought to eradicate them, assimilate them, because you have thought them to be barbarian. In what you have called your non-barbarian societies, children (and wives, and husbands, for that matter) are thought of as property, as personal possessions, and child-bearers must therefore become child-raisers, because they must take care of what they “own.”
A root thought at the bottom of many of your society’s problems is this idea that spouses and children are personal possessions, that they are “yours.”
We’ll examine this whole subject of “ownership” later, when we explore and discuss life among highly evolved beings. But for now, just think about this for a minute. Is anyone really emotionally ready to raise children at the time they’re physically ready to have them?
The truth is, most humans are not equipped to raise children even in their 30s and 40s–and shouldn’t be expected to be. They really haven’t lived enough as adults to pass deep wisdom to their children.
I’ve heard that thought before. Mark Twain had a take on this. He was said to have commented, “When I was 19, my father knew nothing. But when I was 35, I was amazed at how much the Old Man had learned.”
He captured it perfectly. Your younger years were never meant to be for truth-teaching, but for truth-gathering. How can you teach children a truth you haven’t yet gathered?
You can’t, of course. So you’ll wind up telling them the only truth you know–the truth of others. Your father’s, your mother’s, your culture’s, your religion’s. Anything, everything, but your own truth. You are still searching for that.
And you will be searching, and experimenting, and finding, and failing, and forming and reforming your truth, your idea about yourself, until you are half a century on this planet, or near to it.
Then, you may begin at last to settle down, and settle in, with your truth. And probably the biggest truth on which you’ll agree is that there is no constant truth at all; that truth, like life itself, is a changing thing, a growing thing, an evolving thing–and that just when you think that process of evolution has stopped, it has not, but only really just begun.
Yes, I’ve already come to that. I’m past 50, and I’ve arrived at that.
Good. You are now a wiser man. An elder. Now you should raise children. Or better yet, ten years from now. It is the elders who should raise the offspring–and who were intended to. It is the elders who know of truth, and life. Of what is important and what is not. Of what is really meant by such terms as integrity, honesty, loyalty, friendship, and love.
I see the point You have been making here. It is difficult to accept, but many of us have barely moved from “child” to “student” when we have children of our own, and feel we have to start teaching them. So we figure, well, I’ll teach them what my parents taught me.
Thus, the sins of the father are visited upon the son, even unto the seventh generation.
How can we change that? How can we end the cycle?
Place the raising of children in the hands of your respected Old Ones. Parents see the children whenever they wish, live with them if they choose, but are not solely responsible for their care and upbringing. The physical, social, and spiritual needs of the children are met by the entire community, with education and values offered by the elders.
Later in our dialogue, when we talk about those other cultures in the universe, we’ll look at some new models for living. But these models won’t work the way you’ve currently structured your lives.
What do You mean?
I mean it’s not just parenting you’re doing with an ineffective model, but your whole way of living.
Again, what do You mean?
You’ve moved away from each other. You’ve torn apart your families, disassembled your smaller communities in favor of huge cities. In these big cities there are more people, but fewer “tribes,” groups, or clans whose members see their responsibility as including responsibility for the whole. So, in effect, you have no elders. None at arm’s reach, in any event.
Worse than moving away from your elders, you’ve pushed them aside. Marginalized them. Taken their power away. And even resented them.
Yes, some members of your society are even resenting the seniors among you, claiming that they are somehow leeching on the system, demanding benefits that the young have to pay for with ever-increasing proportions of their income.
It’s true. Some sociologists are now predicting a generation war, with older people being blamed for requiring more and more, while contributing less and less. There are so many more older citizens now, what with the “baby boomers” moving into their senior years, and people living longer in general.
Yet if your elders aren’t contributing, it is because you have not allowed them to contribute. You have required them to retire from their jobs just when they could really do the company some good, and to retire from most active, meaningful participation in life, just when their participation could bring some sense to the proceedings.
Not just in parenting, but in politics, economics, and even in religion, where elders at least had a toehold, you have become a youth-worshipping, elder-dismissing society.
Yours has also become a singular society, rather than a plural one. That is, a society made up of individuals, rather than groups.
As you have both individualized and youthened your society, you have lost much of its richness and resource. Now you are without both, with too many of you living in emotional and psychological poverty and depletion.
I’m going to ask you again, is there any way we can end this cycle?
First, recognize and acknowledge that it’s real. So many of you are living in denial. So many of you are pretending that what’s so is simply not so. You are lying to yourselves, and you do not want to hear the truth, much less tell it.
This, too, we’ll talk about again later, when we take that look at the civilizations of highly evolved beings, because this denial, this failure to observe and acknowledge what’s so, is not an insignificant thing. And if you truly want to change things, I hope you will just allow yourself to hear Me.
The time has come for truth telling, plain and simple. Are you ready?
I am. That’s why I came to You. That’s how this whole conversation began.
Truth is often uncomfortable. It is only comforting to those who do not wish to ignore it. Then, truth becomes not only comforting, but inspiring.
For me, this whole three-part dialogue has been inspiring. Please, go on.
There is some good reason to be upbeat, to feel optimistic. I observe that things have begun to change. There’s more emphasis among your species on creating community, and building extended families, than ever in recent years. And, more and more, you are honoring your elders, producing meaning and value in, and from, their lives. This is a big step in a wonderfully useful direction.
So things are “turning around.” Your culture seems to have taken that step. Now, it’s onward from there.
You cannot make these changes in one day. You cannot, for instance, change your whole way of parenting, which is how this current train of thought began, in one fell swoop. Yet you can change your future, step by step. Reading this book is one of those steps. This dialogue will circle back over many important points before we are finished. That repetition will not be by accident. It is for emphasis.
Now, you have asked for ideas for the construction of your tomorrows. Let us begin by looking at your yesterdays.
“Ours is not the better way, it is merely another way.”