The Meaning of Pain (a forgotten exchange last May)

[Just discovered – and years later (2020) rediscovered in my Drafts folder that I’d somehow decided I didn’t want this published anymore, so I put it back in drafts – but now I reread and decide this needs to be out there! – this quite long essay this morning, written last May!  Still timely.  Because it’s long, I’ve highlighted a few “upshot” phrases for those who just want to skim.  It’s a meditation turned into a discussion with someone on another realm.  I doubt the person and resist the message throughout, but then….]

Sitting on the garden bench with my cat this morning,
having just said goodbye to Greg, going off to another day of work to pay our bills, super-grateful to be relieved of this pressure for a few months, feeling gratitude for so many good things, and amazement at the beauty and peace of the garden – thanks to Greg’s diligence.

I’m thinking about the download of information that had hit me yesterday:

I sat on the sofa about dusk, for about two hours, engaged in a deep conversation with someone who felt wise and not unkind, though some of the things said struck me that way.

First, I felt pain in my left shoulder and saw the shape of a large hook in me encompassing part of my skeleton.  I remembered that the previous day, in my mediation, I’d asked for a healing and felt a little chain of hooks disconnected from between my shoulder blades up my neck.  Pr-r-r-r-rt!  They were pulled out easily.

I’d lain there marveling that it was done so quickly, but almost immediately realized it wasn’t all done; this was just a bunch that could be removed easily.  There’d be more, and I knew I had to be patient.

Another pain presented in my neck, I estimate my C2 vertebra.  I wondered what had happened there when I was younger.

Suddenly, I’m with another girl who is murdered viciously by a weapon to her neck, ripping her vertebrae.  I jerk with recognition for just a moment, but keep myself withdrawn from its “reality.”  (All is an illusion, some say, so I’ll withhold judgement, even though it feels real.)

I’m here, now, I tell myself, on my comfortable sofa, free, with many wonderful aspects to my life.  That was long ago.  I recognize that I’m taking this sort of thing more easily, not freaking out.  Good for me.  ‘Bout time.

But I carry the pain in my neck.  And I think I also carry the obedience it enforced.  It would make sense of the incredible obedience I’ve practiced much of my life toward people I don’t respect.

More pains appear in my body, and each one has a story of suffering, fear, and a decision to obey.

This is not news.  What is the meaning of reviewing this?  I’m alive here today.  Messed up in ways, certainly, with spotty memory, stunted social skills, but more aware than others – and I think that’s a decent trade-off.  I agree with Krishnamurti that “It is no measure of health to be well-adjusted to a profoundly sick society.”

I re-focus on my body and its pains, and think about the programming that did this to me and thousands others – or tens of thousands, or more?

We know Columbus used torture to induce the Natives to bring him gold.  And now the controllers use it to get all sorts of service, from sexual to military to domestic to political, and on and on.

Does this go wa-ay back, even to Sumer?  Is that how they enslaved the masses to create the monuments?

Since I’ve heard so many times that “All is of God” and we shouldn’t look at things in such polarized ways as good versus evil, I try to consider this idea, to decide if I can accept that torture for the purpose of mind-control fits in the “All” that is “God.”

It can’t, can it?

The discussion begins:  Everything living in nature consumes something else that then ceases living, except as a part of the thing that consumed it.  Predator and prey are the ways of Nature.  You value Nature.

Of course.  Once, on a boat in Hawaii, I felt the great Goddess of the ocean rise up about six feet off the top of the water as far as I could see, and being on the deck of a small boat, I felt the energy very close to me, intelligent, giving, and loving to some deep degree that made me feel I could crumple in sobs right there at the rail with other dolphin-swimming new friends a few feet behind me.  Instead, I kept my composure and opened my heart as wide as I could to accept the power of Her, and knew that this was a revealing of the Goddess to a mortal, a huge gift, something that would change me if I’d accept it.  I opened my heart and said to myself silently:  I do, I do.

I knew I’d had many other experiences (how many forgotten?) before that, but each time chose not to take it too seriously.  (After all, the culture made fun of people who do.)

The magnificent, intelligent, loving energy of the ocean settled down, but continued to hum in my heart for many months after that, and only went away after enduring at least six months (I remember writing about it) of terrible mouth pain, day in and day out (for having visited a dentist in Tucson, whom I’m convinced is torturing every spiritual-seeking hippie he can attract with his New Age presentation.  But I digress….)  This experience and some magical swimming with dolphins away from the boats on the last day of my trip buoyed me so much that I felt high, despite daily pain, for many months afterward.

And that’s only one of many, many stories I remember of being gifted in some way in Nature.

So, yes, I love Nature, and yes, I understand that it involves predation, one species of another.  But aren’t humans different?

You’re learning to be.  And now you need to learn that predation is not evil.  It’s just “what is”:  energy become part of new energy, constantly.

Some of those “alien abductees” (whose accounts you’ve read, so you’ve heard this) were told about human beings as prey to other species, and you considered the idea, but rejected it. 

Yeah.  No one wants to hear that they are prey.

Why do you resist this simple truth of Nature, that all life involves predation?  Think of it as energy exchange.  You should never have been told you were at the top of the food chain.  It was a lie.  There is no “top” in a loop.

And prey, you know, don’t die.  Life simply goes on in another form.  Some prey are used in mundane ways, like compost, while others serve their predators in more interesting ways. 

Like mind control subjects?

(Ignoring my question)  You’ve sometimes said that you think your tormentors, even though they’re “mean to you,” still “like” you and will protect you somehow.  You’ve intuited the truth. 

But we’re still prey.

Why cringe at that?  Why cower?  Do you – like other conscious ones among you, like Native people – honor the meat that you eat?  Is it not worthy of your respect?  Do you not admire the beauty of the salmon and it’s life before you consume it?

Change channel!  Can I change this channel?

I answer myself:  No.  Stay with this.  Don’t be afraid of it – after all, it’s either a lie, in which it won’t hurt me, or it’s the truth, in which case it’s better to know than not know.  So I can stay with this.  Just a theory I’ll consider.

I know who I am.  I’m in the tribe of the one who tossed over the money-changers’ tables.  I’m in the tribe of the one who defended the unmarried woman, who told Mary not to worry that Martha was all uptight about working in the kitchen alone, who advocated caring for a strange man – of another race – on the road, and encouraged us not to devote our life energy to material things.  That’s my tribe, and I know they’re nearby on other planes where we can’t see them, maybe because of our programming, and maybe because we’ve been engineered or implanted to have duller senses.  I know they’re there and am infinitely grateful for those glimpses and miracles and healings and signs over my lifetime.  That’s who I am.  I can listen to this argument and see where it is heading.

Even “Jesus” ate fishes and bread.  He thanked God for those fishes, and then he ate them.  Those fishes died for humans, and those wheat plants too.

I can handle that.  Certain life exists specifically in service to another.

Everything exists in a web of give and take.  And most of the time, we call it beautiful.

The evening primroses blooming profusely in the garden right now have as their nourishment dead and dying things.

I remember when my permaculture teacher, Bill Mollison, described life at the roots of plants, including nematodes which grab – ! – and at this point, he made a quick motion of snatching some passing organism in the soil, reminding us that even in the most serene garden, underground life is thing-eat-thing, literally dark, and – if we choose to see it that way – even vicious.  Lovely flowers.

So, I understand that.  But human life….  Shouldn’t it be different?  Isn’t that what we say elevates us from the rest?  Don’t tell me we’re no better.

It’s part of a process.

Remember the conversation you had with Greg about humans in a primitive state not living in any Eden.  Life was a constant struggle against Nature, making shelter, keeping warm, finding food and water (much of it requiring the death of plants and animals, we might add).  And when a tribe lost what they had because of the cruelties of Nature, they went somewhere else, and sometimes that threatened others’ survival, and that turned, and still turns, into conflict. 

But even when entire primitive lifetimes were what you might think of as very good, say, “pastoral,” those people did little more than feed themselves and if they were lucky, make love, raise children, and make a little art to leave behind:  clay pots, song, dance….  They weren’t “going anywhere.”  Pretty much, their lives were devoted to little more than feeding themselves and having fun when they had time – until they were employed by people with bigger visions. 

Is that what this all about?  Bigger visions?

I often wonder what I would give up to free all the people enslaved to bring us our modern conveniences.  Computers?  Absolutely.

Would I sacrifice Greg’s guitar?  Well, I hope it wouldn’t be necessary, because that company harvested the wood in a manner certified to be “sustainable,” though I know there’s more to the industry that I might not like if I knew more about it.

Would I give up a culture with cafes and bars, like the ones where I’ve listened to local musicians over the years?  I don’t know.  How about the bakery with its backyard stage where I first saw Greg?

Or the digital camera that lets us record ourselves?  I think I would give it all up, especially the hours of practice to achieve a culturally-acceptable sound, in exchange for a lifetime of singing around a fire with others who are our community.  Definitely.

All the goodies of today’s world I think I would give up to free the billions of people slaving in Third World factories to give us things we will throw in the trash next year.

But I sense this question is not so black-and-white.

Very good.  It’s not.  And we still need to finish this examination of predation.  The fact remains:  Life requires death.  And death often takes the form of predation – as beings like you need to eat.

The volvox comes to mind.  Life, I once read, when it evolved sexual reproduction (the volvox being the first sexual organism), introduced something else new to evolution along with sex – and that is death.  Until sex, nothing died.  All life simply multiplied unless killed by accident, but most life lived on immortally, reproducing itself exactly, with no variation.

With sex came the advent of diversity and change – but only with death.  Otherwise, diversity and change with unbridled expansion create something akin to cancer – covering the planet.  Since life needed some limits, death and sex came together in this new stage in Earth’s evolution.

Yes:  Death became essential.  If not for death, the Earth’s resources would be quickly depleted, and there would be no order, no selection of what works best over that which doesn’t work. 

Something has to select what will continue and what will not.  Predation is that tool.

I’m feeling irritated, sensing this is leading me to something I don’t like.  I feel like a child being told a fact of life that’s obvious and I still don’t like it.

And it’s embarrassing because it’s so obvious.  Like, I shouldn’t need to be almost sixty before coming to terms with this.

And I’m suspicious that I’m being led down a reasonable-sounding path toward something that’ll seem convincing, but might not be true.  Just because the argument begins with some truths doesn’t mean it contains the whole story or will arrive at a correct conclusion.  I’m on my guard.

That said, I agree that predation is natural and necessary.  But it seems that human evolution could be kinder – not the slavery that billions experience, from physical to mind control.

Why should humans be kinder?

[Sigh.]  Too big a question.

You’re right.  I’ll help you. 

Why are you not kind to every living thing?  Why do you pay someone to raise and slaughter cows in a manner that is not kind?  Why do you buy a computer that required some woman to leave her children alone all day, while she breathes toxic air and solders your microchips?  Why do you still rip out “weeds” without a thought and lop branches off fruit trees when their sap flows in the spring?

Because I am a product of my culture, and I was not only not taught respect, but every bit of respect I had in me innately has been disrespected and discouraged over my lifetime.  I “forget.”  I’ve been culturally controlled to be half-asleep.

I know it sounds like an excuse, but aren’t these legitimate reasons for being half-asleep?  I don’t buy that we’re all personally responsible for everything our culture has created before we arrived here.  If I was, I’d die of regret and overwhelm.

Just yesterday, I wondered about my heart holding out.  I wasn’t stressed; I was focusing inward, to meditate, when my heart suddenly hurt, and then my left arm hurt, and that scared me.

I don’t believe we can take on the sins of the world, as much as we might want to dedicate ourselves to good causes; it seems we have to protect our hearts somewhat.  We have to shut down.


I think I have to, to keep living.  I think there’s something else good for me to do here, and I don’t believe I have the strength to keep going if I acknowledge all that’s wrong.

This morning, Greg showed you a few of the music videos he watched with headphones last night while you meditated.  You clearly enjoyed watching George Harrison sing, smile, and talk about his life.

I did.  And I know that George Harrison would never have come into existence in the way he did if we’d all lived a pastoral life – he wouldn’t have been needed.

But I think I get your point.  Our ideas today – including our consciousness of right behavior and unnecessary pain – are far beyond what they were in that (peaceful or not) pastoral setting.

I’m reminded of something I’ve often described:  Thesis, antithesis, and synthesis.  The pastoral life is the thesis or theme for humankind’s beginning in Nature; the antithesis is service to an industry of human ideas; and we’re now working out our synthesis – never easy.  I accept that.

So what was our last question?

Two unanswered, but related:  “Why should human evolution be ‘kind’?”  And “Must we accept predation?”

It’s seems more enlightened to be kind and get beyond predation.

But the world is not enlightened.

How could I forget!?  I remember knowing, when I was very young that this culture wasn’t a good one.

But kindness is something we can aspire to.  It may even be “what it’s all about” in this crazy, cruel, horrific, fascinating, entertaining, entrancing, deadly culture – to evolve greater kindness.

And until humans decide that kindness has value and should be balanced with the other values (industry, for example), we won’t be enlightened.

Right.  And so, now you’re experiencing a culture based on a limited set a values – limited because humans haven’t fully-enough experienced the downside of cruelty.  You’re about to, though.

I think I already have, with my childhood programming terrors.  Can we heal those?

It’s very messy, and it’s all connected, complicated, and could have some unknown consequences.

Are you saying we have to leave my hooks in?

(I sense a decision to do a demonstration for me.)  I sense the big hook separated slightly from my shoulder, and see it’s connected to everything else.  Everything has tugged slightly out-of-place, and I see/sense all the connections that would have to be dealt with if this one thing were dealt with.  I agree it’s a messy problem.

And I assume this is why I’ve often felt that my help on the other dimensions had to leave it in place, always “for a while longer.”  (Or I was programmed not to seek healing for so long that it’s now too late.)

The results of those hooks are only occasional experiences of forgetfulness or doing something embarrassing – small potatoes compared to the psychic trouble it would be to disconnect everything:  I would need to go back, heal, and rebuild myself from infancy up.  I sense that my extra-dimensional help has “work-arounds” ready.  So I’ll survive in my current “hooked” condition.

But I’m tired of feeling like a pawn, and my back hurts.

Well, you are a pawn.  And lots of people and other living things also hurt.  

But you know that this Earth life is only a flash in your soul’s long history.

But his Earth life feels damn long – and painful – now.

Yes, we know.

So how does this all tie together?  My pain, and the suffering of billions for the pleasure of a few – how do they tie in with human evolution?

Nature, with death, includes suffering,  The Buddha was right.

But what value is there to evolution in torture and mind control?  Can’t we create a culture in which no one has to serve another by scrubbing their toilets, indulging their perverse sexual cravings, and soldering with toxic chemicals?  Does nature require that wealthy psychopaths purchase other human beings like this?  The development of the Internet, music industry, and shipping of avocados for my guacamole should be able to be developed without such human misery.  Please tell me it’s possible.

It is, and you’re on the way.

Okay, so now tell me, was all this pain a necessary step?  Or might we have avoided it?

You might have, but not likely.  Nature favors the aggressor.  That’s another fact of Nature, at least in young ecosystems.  Mature ecosystems favor cooperation, and Earth culture is in the process of discovering the difference right now – it’s a critical point in your evolution.  Some will choose the old way; some will see alternatives, like those you’ve written about and tried to practice.

I didn’t write or promote as much as I thought I would.  It seemed every time I had the opening, something intervened, or I sabotaged myself.

Of course, the system in place, the aggressors or controllers, as you call them, have created a system, including your programming, to keep you from undermining their game.  It’s their nature to do exactly this.  And your job is not just to see something better, but to also deal with the reality of the world around you.

Two things at once.

Yes, sorry [I sensed sarcasm here], we gave you two things at once – sometimes life does that.

Okay, so our challenge is to see another way and at the same time protect ourselves from abuse if we can, or put up with the abuse, and try to help others not be so abused.  And all those channelers and others who say that all this cruelty is a just “life lesson” are pretty much right?

Soul lessons – no small thing.

So that we souls will know absolutely that unbridled predation is unnecessary?

Well, it might actually be necessary for a period of time, as in the “immature ecosystem” we mentioned.  You can’t have a mature ecosystem until you have passed through the immature phase.  The lowest forms of life must first just survive.  

Aren’t we beyond the lowest forms?

What do you think?

We’re graduating?  Or on the verge of it?

Some of you are.

And until we do, we’re in this low-life stage, surrounded by low-lifes, being tortured and mind controlled, economically controlled, pharmaceutically controlled, environmentally controlled, and…?

Yes.  And aren’t you motivated to change?

And so we have to be tortured so we’re highly motivated to create a culture without it?

Pretty much.

But what about parents who give their babies into this program?

Did you give your children over?

Not in my conscious memory, but I have allowed them to become entranced, because I couldn’t see any reasonable way not to.

Then you would have robbed them of their essential lessons.

But what of those who consciously participate in their children’s mind control?

They too were mind controlled, tortured, amnesic, and terrified.  

Were any of them conscious of the torture?

How conscious are you?

I see consciousness is all relative and probably not a conversation I can have from where I’ve been, struggling as I am with my own consciousness.


So the Illuminati, calling themselves, essentially, “the enlightened or conscious ones,” are willing to torture children.  Is this an irony and contradiction that the “dark” Rulers of the exploitative systems of this world are the ones dealing the lessons to us?  In other words, the Devil is driving our soulful evolution.  Is that it?

And in that sense, “All is God” – including the most terrible, baby-sacrificing Satanist?  Is this our God and driver of our evolution?

If you insist on putting it that way.

I don’t like this conclusion and suspect that you’ve used some errant logic to arrive here.  It’s what I’ve been hearing whispered into my ear for a long time, maybe the reason I’ve been afraid to meditate, why I’ve tried again and again to forget all this and just do something useful in the world, and forget that sometimes I know I’ve been controlled and left with cuts and bruises.  Your conclusion sounds just like a secret society justification for their abuse of the common people.  Like the grifter or con man:  “I’m giving them a valuable lesson about whom to trust.”


But this ignores a larger reality.


And that is …  that is… that there is a kinder way to accomplish those goals.

Is there?  How would people know how to distrust if they didn’t first encounter someone untrustworthy?

I see your point….

So we have to suffer?  Is the Buddha really right when he said we had to suffer?

I always have remembered the pain I felt when my daughter, three years old, fell and smashed her little lips into the asphalt, causing them to swell up and scab into little points giving the impression of a bird-beak, and she couldn’t smile or laugh when her father called her “little bird” all that week.  My heart still aches to remember the stoicism of that little child, so hurt in order to learn to pick up her feet.

And I want to cry for all the children who’ve suffered with hands blown off by land-mines dropped by my government in senseless wars, or children orphaned or put to work at young ages to sew cheap garments we won’t even keep for long.

And I feel like I’m leaving this realm soon anyway, don’t feel like I even belonged here in the first place, actually, so it’s good to think of everything collapsing soon.  I look forward to it.

It’s coming soon.

But this existence was necessary for awhile?

For “a while.”

And the controllers aren’t “evil,” just a necessary player in our soul’s evolution?

That’s right.

It’s seems right, but I don’t like it.


I don’t like excusing what I think of as evil.

You’ve said yourself that your daughter wouldn’t have learned to pick up her feet without smashing her lips, and the deer wouldn’t have evolved its speed without the lion, and people might not understand how to create culture unless they’d experienced cultures that were cruel.

Yeah.  But I still don’t like it.

I’m determined to keep promoting what I think will contribute toward a working culture for when this thing collapses, which I pray will be soon.

And what will you promote?

Besides all the Earth-sustaining practices I learned with Permaculture:  cooperation.

How will everyone take care of all the life necessities?  Will people specialize and some even serve others so that more capable people have time to envision and implement evolutionary changes?

Some will serve others [I say, even though I have always felt very uncomfortable with this idea], as I can see its utility, as well as recognize that not everyone is evolving at the same level at once.

Will some clean others’ toilets?

Quit hitting me with uncomfortable details.  I’d create a system with ecosystem-integrated toilets that didn’t need cleaning, other than what Nature did naturally.

Good.  See how your emotion has helped you clarify this.  This is the sort of creative thinking that comes from strong desire, born of strong emotion, usually painful.  You’ll do well in helping guide some new culture.

I’m tired and don’t think I’d be respected.


Because I’ve been so self-sabotaging that I’ve just lost credibility.

Don’t project into the future what you’ve experienced in the past.

I know that.  But that’s all we humans can do, and it’s required, for us to plan.

[laughing]  You’re correct.  Everything in balance.  And be prepared for everything to move out of balance.  Things change.  There are the seasons, as you often point out, and there are cosmic seasons.

Don’t waste energy and emotions decrying the controllers.  Instead, find your personal strengthKnow what you believe in, the positive things, not the things you want to go away; they will, without your energetic hemorrhaging; it’s a waste of energy. 

And even our conversation didn’t do the subject justice; it’s far beyond your Earthly understanding; remember you’ve been mind-controlled; so go with your gut and intuition.  And turn your focus now on what you want, not what you don’t want.  

Is that how our cosmic tribe will find us?  By resonance, as I’ve written?

Essentially.  But it’s more than just focusing on that.  Remember Lao Tzu, and doDoing creates a strong resonance.  Sitting, stewing, musing, especially in anger or indignation or fear, only sends out a beacon to your tormentors.

But when I try to forget them, it’s like I’m a lizard my cat is tormenting:  they bat me around to see if I’ll run and become their toy again.

And what do you do?

I used to get hysterical, but I just understood – again, as I do forget – that that only excites them.

Yes, there are unevolved spirits in the other realms, not much more evolved than your cat.  You’re getting it if you understand now that you just shouldn’t react to them.  

Is this a hell planet?  Or a prison planet?

Both metaphors work in a sense, but they’re unnecessarily alarming, so I wouldn’t go there.  

But, it is true that both heaven and hell exist in this third-dimensional space called Earth, but neither heaven nor hell are as the masses understand them.  They’re the conditions under which our souls are forged, sometimes in fire, and sometimes in other ways, through beauty, as you also enjoy – in music, art, dance, garden design, service to community, all of which have lifted you to rapture at times.  Don’t forget those times.

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