Do we choose?
Years ago when I first heard the concept that we choose our family, I was horrified.
“No way!” I thought. And then never gave it another thought. Why should I have? It isn’t true, I thought. It’s B.S.
Until years later, when my spiritual path became clearer. Or, shall I say, my spiritual path appeared, because I hadn’t realized that I was on one or that we’re all on one. Clueless, I was. Clueless.
The idea of that kind of choice is a hard sell. It pisses people off.
I mean, tell it to a mother whose child has died.
Or to someone in constant tremendous pain.
Or to a survivor of torture and atrocity.
See what I mean about a hard sell? About anger?
Who would choose those things?
I get it. Oh, I don’t get what it feels like to be in those shoes. No way I could. But I do get how the idea that they CHOSE these situations could anger people.
Just about every week I read a book by a spiritual explorer, those folks who believe they have learned from contacts with the other side. I’ve read scores of books like this and two messages are consistent. First, it’s all about love. And that’s something I also got from my father’s unexpected, spontaneous presence that came out of the blue accompanied by a tidal wave of unbelievable love. I can’t explain it, and won’t even try to. All I know is that it happened and the message was love.
The second consistent message is that we are here to learn and that we do plan the people and events in our life in that time between lives, a time when we meet with our spiritual guides and elders. That meeting is all about planning what will happen in this life. Someone in the family being a dick to you in this life? Yeah, I’ve got those people in my life, too. i’ve come to believe they’re likely to be some of our teachers and we all agreed on this scenario in the life between lives. I know that the people who have been cruelest to me in this life are the ones who have taught me forgiveness when nothing else or no one else could. Painful. But effective.
I remember my girlfriend saying plaintively, “I don’t know what my cancer is meant to teach me.”
“I don’t know, either,” I replied, “but maybe you and your illness are meant to teach others.”
Cold consolation, I know. To me, too. But of course, she and her life/death inspired A Healing Spirit. Is that coincidence? Most of the time I have no other explanation for its genesis. So is this part of why she went through what she did? I don’t know.
It’s easy to suggest taking an elevated view of the bad things that happen when not that many bad things have happened in our own lives.
And it’s also easy to write off people who have this view of the horrible events in their life as rationalizing.
I don’t have the definitive answer, because I haven’t left this life yet. None of us will now for sure until we leave this life.
But if I were to decide on the basis of everything I’ve read and lectures I’ve heard, I would have to say that all the evidence points toward this. Toward the idea that what happens in our lives is largely the result of our planning for it. To help us learn, grow and evolve.
I’m not proselytizing here, but hoping to present a different point of view and maybe even generate some real discussion of this question.
If you’re interested in some of the books that influenced my thinking, here are a few of them:
I’m Not Dead, I’m Different, by Hollister Rand
Journey of Souls by Michael Newton
Seeking Jordan: How I Learned the Truth about Death and the Invisible Universe by Matthew McKay, PhD
Many Lives, Many Masters by Brian Weiss, M.D.
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