Problem of Suffering, Cooperative Pre-incarnation

I often ponder the Problem of Evil (known in theology and philosophy as Theodicy) and have many times considered the “cooperative pre-incarnation movement” someone mentioned in Kathleen McGowan’s Magdalene forum recently.  Cooperating with each other and with the Universal Consciousness (God?) and choosing, AGREEING to incarnate on earth does seem logical and more sensible than the rather loose karma-reincarnation theory.

Maybe it went something like this.  We were a group of volunteer souls about to be sent onto this egg, this earth-planet, and were gathered together for a sort of briefing, a great gathering of souls about to fill the Hall of Souls on Earth.  We could have been told something like:  You will have minds capable of full consciousness, but your bodies and physical surroundings will constantly distract you, keeping you in a kind of mundane every-day unconsciousness. Your spirit will be asleep in this unconscious state that you will be in. If you can wake up, if you can figure out you are not your body, not the thinker inside your head but the higher soul watching all this thinking going on, you will become fully conscious, “awakened.”  By waking up from the mundane unconsciousness you are one more mind in the critical mass to help the Universe become conscious of Itself — the purpose of humanity in the first place. 

But back to the mundane unconsciousness. It can lead to horrors.  Unconscious people do despicable horrible things to others.  Some of you will fall into those traps and do awful things, others of you will be victims of these horrors and not understand why or what the heck is going on.  You will get angry, desperate, suicidal.  It ain’t gonna be a picnic.  But all that pain and suffering forces your mind to go deeper, deeper until it finally says hey wait a minute, I am not really this little me, I am the field of awareness in which “me” happens!  (Read Eckhart Tolle’s A New Earth for the best explanation of this awakening from little me unconsciousness). 

Okay, so anyway, I like to think we were given the choice, asked if we could handle going down into the flesh and going thru incarnation after incarnation where we would sometimes be bad guys, sometimes be victims, sometimes be both, but always trying to make our way thru suffering and bewilderment, thru fear, greed, power-lust, pain until we finally looked long and deep enough to find what is really going on.  We then figure out the REAL reason we are here for — which is to wake up as individuals and thus help Universe wake up, achieve full awareness of Itself.  That is the closest I can come to “solving” the Problem of Evil.  <snort> And I have been grappling with it for many years.  The standard solutions offered by philosophers and religionists such as, ‘God gave us Free Will so we end up with some people perpetrating evils,’ do help me somewhat, but they fail to answer why God allows suffering.  (The problem of suffering is a part of the Problem of Evil in philosophical/theological discourse).  We can say that because of Free Will some men choose to do evil and that is why your little girl got molested and murdered.  Okay, painful as hell but we can see the logic of that.  HOWEVER, what about this, God?:  What causes the same little girl to be born beautiful and healthy but then get cancer when she is in first grade, drop out of school, end up bald and lying in a cancer ward frail as a waif, body racked with pain, wasting away wondering what happened to her life?  What about THAT suffering?  It wasn’t caused by Free Will.

So yeah, evil.  Ugh.  Suffering of the innocent, double Ugh.  That is the one I am grappling with now, solitary philosphical arguments going on in my head.  <laugh>   The closest I have gotten recently, and I have not yet gotten it into words (thank you list-friends for triggering yet another session) is some very wispy realizations while reading Eckhart Tolle’s A New Earth and Dinesh D’Souza’s What’s So Great About Christianity.  Suffering of the innocent from flooks of nature like cancer and horrible lingering fatal diseases, is another thing that forces us to go DEEP.  The parents of that child and the child herself (or in the case of adults dying of fatal diseases, the person and their loved ones) are given suffering as this huge doorway, not just a window, into the Awakened Realm.  Back at the beginning when we had our cooperative pre-incarnation briefing we were also told that the system was set up so that some of us would suffer from flooks of nature, from physical waste and excruciating pain.  This suffering would then force us and those around us to think, think, THINK and to go deep and WITHIN to find cosmic answers.  Some of us might even awaken while observing such hells, others would get into despair and curse at Universe/the Powers that Be, etc.  But some would use the suffering as that window — actually nice big door — of opportunity for awakening. 

Still working out the kinks of this one.  I’ll check back in a few years (!) which is usually how long I chew on each of these elements.  <laugh>  Thanks to all the spiritual writers and bloggers who pose such dilemmas and write about them, thus giving fuel to my fodder of pondering.



Debating the Resurrection, Jesus, Magdalene on Easter Sunday

I posted “Did the Resurrection Actually Happen?” by Dinesh D’Souza to several of the various YahooGroups forums I moderate. D’Souza is a mainstream Christian whose arguments, I think, are very good and very useful to esoteric and alternative Christians who believe in the historicity of Jesus and yes, in the resurrection.

Dr. James Gardner responded with the Jesus website’s intellectual tear-down of the resurrection – it was “just literary”, it didn’t really happen, Mark made it up, t’was added later, etc. etc. Boring, dry argument designed to make us all exclaim, “Aha! We were lied to!” And then go forth as miserably depressed myth-bashers and atheists like the Jesus Police author(s).

Such nay-sayers poo-poohing all our myths and making our spiritual stories nothing but dry historical events, lifeless “legends” that despite a total “lack of value” nevertheless caused supposedly deluded people to faithfully record them. Even though the Jesus story is completely lacking in any spiritual value according to the JesusPolice intellectuals, lacking in any luminosity, our ancestors recorded and repeated these myths over and over for centuries. Nothing supernatural — “above and beyond nature” — nothing greater than our chemical selves has ever really happened, dontcha know. Blah blah blah, delusion and ignorance of the masses, and pooo pooo pooh, is what they do on Jesus The Adversary is probably very pleased with them. But then I am an ignorant, deluded, naïve so-and-so for even believing in the Adversary.

The only page of theirs I like is their Magdalene page because I agree with their factual analysis of her. But the Jesus Police, like countless other “scholars” fall short and refuse to give Magdalene her Feminine Divine aspect. At least they agree she was a real historical person (while seeming to doubt Jesus was!), but they make her dry, unluminous, just another literary figure….

Still they’ve got the Magdalene facts right (in my opinion) even to the point of quoting “our” Margaret Starbird and Bishop Spong.

Lore and I had an exchange regarding the “Did the Resurrection Actually Happen” article as follows:

lkemsley at writes:

Oh, boy, I’m having a hard time deciding: do I blow his assertions
out of the water (so easy to do), or do I just be quiet because most
people need the belief in the physical resurrection? It isn’t that
belief that bothers me, but his inaccuracies, like the statement that
there is so much proof for his historicity. There is none.

Hi Lore: The writer of the article is Dinesh D’Souza. He is the author of What’s So Great About Christianity, a new and useful book.

Yes he’s a mainstream Christian, altho he’s a bit unique in that he was born and raised in India where Christianity is somewhat esoteric. Dinesh D’Souza gives all kinds of Christians, including us underground streamers aka esoterics, many useful tools to use when we debate with atheists, Satanists (I occasionally encounter such via our website and the online Mystery School), with those who think Jesus never existed, was just a fable. As D’Souza points out in the article, there is more proof of Jesus’ historicity than there is for Aristotle and Pythagoras and countless other figures — yet nobody doubts they existed.

And ” Arriving three days after his death, the women brought spices
to his tomb to anoint and preserve his body. Only then did they
observe that the stone had been rolled away and the tomb was empty.”
ignores MM’s importance completely.

True, he is not Margaret Starbird (hee hee, wish he was), nor is he an alternative or esoteric Christian, and so he does not share our reverence for and belief in Magdalene’s prominence.

And “The apostles were deeply skeptical about reports of a
resurrection, and Christ had to appear to them several times before
these doubts were dispelled.” does the same.

Much of history ignored Magdalene’s importance, she was cloistered away, secreted away, protected from Paul the persecutor-turned-Christian whose writings are a large part of early Christianity. The mainstream Christians like Dinesh D’Souza are still getting used to our revolutionary revelation of Magdalene’s role in Jesus’ life and the heart of Christianity. Just because they haven’t got the new message yet, the feminine divine message, we can still find use for such mainstream arguments in any place our beliefs overlap or intersect.

Ever notice how dry the “just the facts, ma’am” approach is? How
lacking in passion? There is not one word of the intensity of that
week in his argument. I use that approach too, quite often, but it is
hard to do on this [Easter] morning. None of his [D’Souza’s] inaccuracies make the
stunning events of this week any less important. I long ago came to
the conclusion that even if not one word of it is literally true, the
mythological truth of it is astounding and deeply needed.

Dinesh D’Souza is a mainstream but not fundamentalist Christian — and very left brained. Reminds me of Thomas Aquinas in some ways. His style is that of debate, using logic and all that male left-brain mode of argument which is actually helpful to have in one’s communication toolbag, I think. He is scheduled to debate Christopher Hitchens in Las Vegas about the existence of God. Hitchens you recall wrote the book God is Not Great and is convinced there is no god, no supernatural, no luminous myth, nothing but chemical reactions and psychosis in our brains. His debate with D’Souza is going to be a big event. D’Souza has debated other atheists (he debates one per year at this venue) and now he’s gonna face Christopher Hitchens who no longer believes in the Judaism of his childhood, thinks Christianity and Islam are proof of the evil of religion because of all the wars they “caused”. D’Souza points out, and will no doubt do so during their debate, that atheist states like the Soviet Union and China, and the 3rd Reich which was what — occult pagan? with a secretly Catholic leader? — killed way more people, and did so recently compared to Christianity.

We are all Children of Divine Love. We’ll all be “resurrected” with
or without our physical bodies, although why we’d want physical
bodies in an ethereal world is beyond me. There was no evil in Eve or
her seeking Wisdom, no original sin to atone for, no reason for a
petty, jealous god to demand his only begotten son to die in agony to
atone for a single one of us. We live eternally, with or without his
death and resurrection.

I agree with you on all of the above, and discuss on our Mystery School’s Easter Cycle page my belief that God-the-Father was not the petty jealous god we have been taught who demanded human sacrifice. Human sacrifice was anathema to the Old Testament God as we see in the account of Abraham being stopped by God from sacrificing his boy, Isaac. Hebrew scholars have pointed out this story was the Old Testament God’s way of communicating his strong desire for people to STOP the prevalent ancient Middle East practice of sacrificing babies, children and virgins to all those supposedly hungry “gods”.

I also agree we live eternally with our without his death and resurrection, but I don’t think we should just throw the resurrection onto the dust-heap of history and call it “mere myth.” It’s the lynchpin story-myth that connects Jesus to Tammuz and Osiris and the glorious annual return of vegetation with its hope of food (no grocery stores in the ancient world). As Lord of the Rings author JRR Tolkein said to his buddy CS Lewis, “The Christian story is a myth that just also happens to be historically true.” It is both myth and the physical fulfilment of myth. Very cool. The Jesus myth is like an onion with layers, like a dream symbol that means several things all at once.

But the image of his love, the love of Magdalene, the pain of separation and
the need to know we (even more for those we love than ourselves)
survive after death — all of that each and every one of us needs,
not just on Easter but every day of our lives.

For sure. And on Easter we think of it even more and can help reenact it in our lives.  We can use the holiday as a teaching moment for the little ones coming up who need to learn the power and healing of humanity’s myths.

I’m a dawn person. I love the sounds and smells of dawn. The birds
waking up all atwitter, then breaking into song. My four-legged
friends calling to me just as I first begin to stir. The sun sliding
out from behind the hills, kissing the flowers with gold. This is my
daily resurrection, my new birth, my eternal reminder that all is
well and I am loved.

Yes so true! I wish I was a dawn person…. somehow I got stuck being an after midnight to about 3 o’clock in the morning person!

Mary Magdalene went to his tomb at dawn, to care for the man she
loved more than earthly life itself. She was The Woman Who Knew The
All, yet her grief left her dazed and confused. Her grief made her
barely in this world. It appeared as little more than an annoying
haze when he spoke to her. Why was this man bothering her? Why did
she need to pay attention to him? Why couldn’t she be alone while her
heart burst?

And then all was healed. He Was There. He could be seen and felt and
touched and heard. Can we not imagine the joy of knowing that, for
sure, for all time, without mistake?

That is the knowledge and the love this morning brings back to us,
resurrected every year just as Spring arrives filled with new life,
promise and hope, just as Spring tells us we survived the ravages of
winter and abundance is now ours, once again.

* * * * * *
I hear ya. So true. I like the way you put it….
* * * * * *

It matters little to me if his physical body survived because his
soul did and his love did and mine does and eternal life is something
we share.

I like to think his physical body didn’t survive the crucifixion but died and was buried — but then Goddess and God (perhaps thru Magdalene’s mouth) said, “arise my Love.”  Arise and LIVE the myth of regeneration, the spring vegetation life-giving song mankind’s health and very existence depends upon.

I wonder if Goddess and God were teaching us you can’t kill divinity. Jesus represented the soul of the world, and each of our immortal souls. We can’t be killed, is the message. We rise again. Presumably his physical body would have later decayed or been transmuted into something spiritual.  That part esotericists disagree on. I think Blavatsky and her School (Theosophical Society) believe in a spiritual transmutation of his physical body so that it didn’t have to die again. Some Gnostics and Rosicrucians think he then aged and died like Magdalene and Mary.  Speaking of Mother Mary and Mary Magdalene, both these holy women embodied the sacred feminine just as Jesus embodied the sacred masculine.  We are fine with them dying “normally” and leaving their physical bodies at death, why not Jesus, too? One Gnostic text, Pistis Sophia, I think, teaches that he stayed after the resurrection for 11 years to continue teaching his pupils.

I think the resurrection was needed to get their message — the wisdom teachings — recorded and written down.  If the resurrection story hadn’t happened, we might all be classical pagans, members of either the Isis or Mithras cults depending on our gender (as was the rule in the Greco-Roman world).  Or we would be northern European heathens, or Muslims, or who knows what, if the resurrection story hadn’t shook up enough people to make them write it down for all time, and spread the story like wildfire.

Goddess and God knew that some of us (such as yourself, Lore!) wouldn’t need Jesus’ physical body to rise again in order to help you spiritually evolve, help you realize the inner luminosity of the myth symbols.  But they also knew (I think) that humanity as a whole needed that significant event to start the myths rolling again, to provide the catalyst to get the Great Lesson out to everyone. (okay, “Great Lesson” is a rather lame term, but you get the idea. )


P.S. If you find yourself debating these issues, be sure to check out Dinesh D’Souza’s book What’s So Great About Christianity from which the article, “Did the Resurrection Actually Happen?” was adapted from.