Neale, I have a question that has puzzled me for a long time.
My sister-in-law is very, very ill. She has been bedridden for over 3 years with agonizing pain throughout her entire body, 24/7. The medical profession has said that it can do nothing for her pain, so my brother has explored many avenues in a search of healing for her, or at least some relief from the pain.
Many times she has been so low that we thought she was going to pass, but each time she would get a message that it was 'not her time'. In the experience she says that she was so relieved that it was 'over,' yet then she would wake up in her pain filled body again.
We, who all love her dearly, have told her that we can let her go, as we don't want to see her suffer any more. Of course, if she was free of pain, she would be happy to stay here. She and my brother are beautiful souls and a constant source of inspiration to all who come in contact with them. If she was well, they are the sort of people who would help out wherever there was a need, and, indeed, were doing this before she became ill.
What I don't understand is, why she has to suffer this terrible pain; and for so long? If God does mean her to stay for a while longer, why is it so hard to find the answer for her? Surely He does not mean for her to suffer like this to the end of her days here.
I could not have believed that anyone could endure what she has, for so long; and without complaint. She and my brother are constantly appreciative of all that they have and the blessing of their love for each other, and have never asked Why?" They realize there are lessons in this for them; while they continue to look for some relief for the pain. Every time we think we have found an answer for her, it works for a little while, then stops working. We have all had our hopes dashed so many times.
In case you are wondering, she originally was diagnosed with fibromyalgia and CFS. Goodness knows what else she has now, as she is so physically debilitated. My brother totally cares for her in their home, and I can't even begin to imagine what it has done to him to watch his wife in pain and feeling helpless as to what he can do.
As I love my brother and sister-in-law dearly, it has been a very emotional, sad and grieving time for me as well. While they inspire me with their attitude, I really don't believe that any amount of inspiration is worth what she has had to endure. I, also, have sought answers to this and at one stage it was suggested by Kim Wisser that I 'embrace' what was happening to her. (I went to an Embracing Change workshop when they were out here in Australia).
Kim's suggestion helped for a while, but as the pain continues with no relief I really am at a loss as to what to do that is the best for all concerned. I would really appreciate your thoughts on this Neale.
My dear Elizabeth...It is always very difficult and deeply saddening to see someone we love enduring endless pain. I understand how you feel and the anguish and the confusion that your sister-in-law, your beloved brother, and even you, by extension, are going through. I am so glad you have written to me.
Dear friend, there are times in our lives when the agenda of our soul is not clear to us. There are times when "God's Plan" seems confusing, unreasonable, even unfair. This is one of those times. So let me talk with you about this just a bit.
First of all, there is no such thing as "God's Plan" in the classic sense. That is, it is not true in my understanding that God has an idea or a purpose for us, and simply plows ahead and "makes that happen," without telling us what is going on or why, and without giving us any authority or control over the events that are occurring. This is just not how God works, and I want to help you to be very clear on that.
All creations in the Universe are collaborative. Nothing happens, or can happen, against our will.
I am talking now about our will as it exists and is expressed at the Super Conscious Level -- not necessarily at the Conscious Level of our awareness.
You will recall that CwG says we are constantly creating at three levels of consciousness, the Subconscious, the Conscious, and the Super-conscious...and at a fourth level as well, the Supra-Conscious Level...which is all three of the lower levels, combined.
We are usually not aware at the Conscious Level of the reasons why we are creating anything at the other levels of consciousness. We are no more aware of what we are doing at the Super-Conscious Level than we are of what we are doing at the Subconscious Level. Your subconscious is growing your hair, beating you heart, expanding and contracting your lungs as you take in the breath of life, and you are hardly aware of this. It does this without effort, without consulting with you, without you even knowing it half the time. It even does this while you are sleeping! The Super-conscious works in the same way.
Now, just as with the activities of the Subconscious, I am sure that the Super-conscious has perfect reasons and perfect purposes for doing everything. But now, let me tell you something that is a Great Secret. You can CREATE the reason that you are doing anything, or having any experience. And you can do this at the Conscious Level.
That's right. You heard that right. You can go into your Conscious mind and literally create a reason why this is happening. So can your sister-in-law and her wonderful husband, your sweet brother. You can all invoke the Power of Conscious Creation and determine exactly why this is happening--and also even determine the outcome. This little process could be of enormous help to all of you, and most of all, of course, to your sister-in-law.
Why? Because sometimes knowing WHY a thing is happening makes it easier for us to embrace. It's hard to hold something when you don't know why you're holding it. If I said to you, "Here, hold this 20-pound cement block" and you didn't know why you were holding it, chances are you would have to put it down after just a few minutes. Yet if I said, "Here, hold this 20-pound cement block. A life depends on it!", you could hold it a great deal longer. Reasons produce outcomes. Beliefs create behaviors. Understandings produce experience.
A woman in childbirth may experience pain, but not suffering. That is because Pain and Suffering are not the same thing. Pain is an experience, and Suffering is our thought about it. If we make a judgment that a particular pain is not okay, we will suffer whenever we experience it. If we make a judgment that the pain is okay--as in a tooth extraction, or childbirth, for instance--then the pain will be endurable and you will not "suffer." You will "experience," but not "suffer." There is a great deal of difference. It is our understanding that produces our experience. Women understand why they are experiencing pain during childbirth. That is why many women report that they knew pain, but not suffering. Indeed, the pain was experienced, genuinely, as a celebration of life.
Now the only question remaining is, to what is your sister-in-law giving birth? And your brother? And you? To what are you giving birth, Elizabeth? That is the only question. And that is a question only you can answer.
"With this pain I give birth to...." is a sentence I would invite you and your brother and his wife to answer. One idea that I have--your brother and his wonderful life partner may want to think about writing a very special book about Living With Pain . It could wind up being the definitive book on this subject of the past ten years -- one that doctors and nurses and priests and rabbis and ministers and caregivers and family members and patients will ALL use for many, many years to come. When the book is finished, your sister-in-law can decide whether she then wishes to leave her body.
Do not be too terribly surprised if the fulfillment that comes from doing such wonderful work for our world creates a whole new experience for your sister-in-law -- maybe even some slight relief from the worst of the pain, and a reason for living again...
Even if this does not happen, your sister-in-law will have given herself a REASON for the pain, and that simple process may at least make it bearable. Even when it is unbearable, she and her husband can talk about that, they can dictate into a tape recorder everything about that experience, and they can help other people who read their book to deal with this kind of circumstance.
There may be other reasons for all this happening, as well. I want to strongly suggest that your sister-in-law, your brother, and you partake in a process, called Give It A Reason. You can actually ASSIGN it a reason. You can literally make one up. This becomes the ACTUAL REASON, because there is no point in Time that is not called Now. In other words, the reason you give it is the reason that is revealed to you, through all the corridors of Time. This reason can change everything.
So now, if you are going to create a reason why all this is happening, make it a good one. Dream up a reason. Then, forevermore, you will always have an answer to the question, "Why is this happening?" As I have said now twice before, having that answer will at least take the "mystery" out of the situation -- and it is the "mystery" that causes half the suffering.
Do write to me and let me know how this works. In the meantime, I send you bunches of love.
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