Session Start: Sun Jul 23 20:46:53 2000 *** Now talking in #SpiritualPersistence *** Topic is ' 2,4~ Next 2,7Topic: 2,8"Rikkity's Theory of Bereavement" 2,9Sunday 2,11July 23 0,12at 9pm 2,13EDT ~ 0,2Hosted by Rev. Dr. Randolph Becker & Elissa Bishop Becker (and Rikkity). URL: www.spiritualpersistence.com '

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WhiteTiger . howdy :)
Prosub . hi
WhiteTiger . things should be getting rolling here in about ten minutes or so
Prosub . I guess I'm a little early
WhiteTiger . that isn't a bad thing with this bunch... they move right along once they start
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WhiteTiger . I've been late a few times, and had to scramble to catch up ;)
Prosub . Hello Deb
DebT . hi prosub
RevRandy . hi everyone
WhiteTiger . RR :)
Prosub . Hi RevRandy
RevRandy . as you will see, we are an open, free-wheeling group -- and when we get going in a few minutes, we will have more of an intro
RevRandy . my partner is crime and mayhem, Elissa, should be back on line in just a minute or two
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Elissa . hi everyone!
RevRandy . hello E
Elissa . hey your reverence :)
Prosub . Hi Elissa
Elissa . hey prosub, nice to see you
Elissa . for those who are new, we usually wait a few minutes for people to get here... it's a long trip for some :)
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RevRandy . Welcome all to Spiritual Persistence --
RevRandy . it is time to get on with the more formal part of our evening together
RevRandy . and since I notice some new smiling faces
RevRandy . I suspect that an intro would be in order!!!!!
RevRandy . (hint hint Elissa)
Elissa . i guess that's my cue :)
RevRandy . yep
* WhiteTiger hands Elissa her pool stick
RevRandy . my sweet and beautiful partner will now share with us
Elissa . ok, for everyone who is new, here is why you and we are here:
Elissa . lol wt
Elissa . RevRandy has been a Unitarian Universalist minister for
Elissa . almost 30 years, with a thriving congregation in
Elissa . Williamsburg, VA.
Elissa . I am a writer, medium, and published poet, and
Elissa . am currently a Masters student in Community Counseling
Elissa . at the College of William and Mary.
Elissa . (graduating next week, btw)
RevRandy . YAY
Prosub . congrats
Gina . congrats :) that is an accomplishment
Elissa . My and RevRandy's daughter, Ericka (now known as Rikkity in spirit)
Elissa . died in an automobile collision with a drunk driver
Elissa . on August 20, 1995.
Elissa . (thank you)
Elissa . She was 20 years old, and going into
Elissa . her junior year at Yale. 8 days after her death, RevRandy
Elissa . and I began communicating with her.
Elissa . Spiritual Persistence is Rikkity's name for that body of
Elissa . wisdom she has shared with us in the form of Points to
Elissa . Ponder.
Elissa . It is a unique vision of the nature of spiritual
Elissa . and physical existence, of the continuity between life
Elissa . and death, of connection, and of our place in the universe.
Elissa . And it is guidance we follow that has helped us to learn,
Elissa . to heal from grief, and to live better lives.
Elissa . We are here to
Elissa . share this wisdom with you and to explore what it means
Elissa . to you personally, as we learn from one another on this journey.
Elissa . If you have any further questions, please feel free to
Elissa . private message (pm) anyone with an "@" in front of their name
Elissa . or email Randy or me anytime.
Elissa . Thanks
Elissa . for coming...and again, welcome! Does anyone have any questions
Elissa . before we begin?
Prosub . May I ask
Elissa . go for it, prosub
Prosub . How do we know if we are being contacted by the loved one?
Prosub . Or just imagination
Elissa . good question...
RevRandy . good question
Elissa . what i usually say to that is this:
Elissa . if you hear a thought or words that would not normally be your own...
Elissa . in other words, if something you hear surprises you or
Elissa . makes you think, "i wouldn't have said that" then
Elissa . you can be pretty sure it isn't you :)
Prosub . I see figures and see written words in my head
Elissa . and does that surprise you?
Prosub . not anymore...
Gina . well I think that would qualify prosub! I hear it in well, as if someone else is speaking to me.
RevRandy . I agree - I was skeptical about the process in the beginning until I realized that I was receiving knowledge and understandings that were expanding my thinking, feeling, and knowing beyond what I could for myself
Elissa . hahaha... i mean, is it something that is your usual way of thinking or feeling
Prosub . I don't "hear the voices" but I see the words
Prosub . like I'm reading
WhiteTiger . if ya ain't sure, it probably ain't, imo... my personal experiences with adc's were totally unambiguous
Gina . I know people who get it that way prosub.
Prosub . so this can be the way???
Elissa . well, wt, the problem is that many people don't trust their own perceptions, so they may not be sure
Gina . well, but you probably believed, for people who dont believe, they would deny just about anything!
Hypernoodle . there were things I could not deny
Prosub . well I believe.....
Elissa . definitely, prosub... the way the communication happens is not what's important
RevRandy . there is always some uncertainty when we move into the unknown regions
Hypernoodle . and yes....they were certainly surprising
Elissa . there ya go :)
WhiteTiger . heck, I'm as suspicious as they get, Elissa... but Barbie was unmistakable
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RevRandy . (elissa - are you saying that the medium is not the message?)
Prosub . ty.....please go on...I held you up with your talk
Elissa . lol rr
RevRandy . No, - this is a very good question to consider --
Elissa . ok wt... but you trusted it was her
Elissa . it's a 2-way street
Gina . hi Lynne
Lynne . Hi all
Prosub . I "believed" or "felt" it was her
Elissa . then it was, prosub
RevRandy . Well, for tonight
RevRandy . we have a long topic
RevRandy . and probably should launch our way into it
Prosub . {~~listening
Elissa . yes
RevRandy . But, before we begin, we always offer a simple invocation
RevRandy . Please join in the spirit of these words
RevRandy . May we be connected to all things loving
RevRandy . Protected from all things evil
RevRandy . and Guided in all ways gracious. Amen
Elissa . amen~
Prosub . Amen
WhiteTiger . aho
Lynne . amen
DebT . amen
Elissa . welcome lynne :)
RevRandy . Let me share our process for tonight -- Rikkity has shared with us a framework for understanding grief and recovery from loss

RevRandy . we will share the four points one at a time, and illustrate each point with some other communication we have had from her
RevRandy . then, the floor will be open to see if the theory and/or the point to ponder speaks to you -- how, why, why not., etc
RevRandy . At about 10 pm we will break for about 10 minutes, be back until 11 ET --
RevRandy . OK
RevRandy . So, here is what she began with the other day:
RevRandy . 0,2"I will share my own personal theory of bereavement and recovery. My theory
RevRandy . 0,2ays that Kubler-Ross is only one stage, and all her parts (denial, anger,
RevRandy . 0,2bargaining, despair, acceptance) are part of that stage. Here are my 4
RevRandy . 0,2stages:
RevRandy . 0,2
RevRandy . 0,2"Stage 1. Loss, which includes all her s h i t (that's a technical term).
RevRandy . So, thinking about that first stage, of loss, we think about this (somewhat lengthy passage) from Rikkity before:
RevRandy . 0,3"A great struggle occurs in the midst of grief between probable realities,
RevRandy . 0,3and the human course of emotions calls us to focus on the road not taken.
RevRandy . 0,3So much of the grief is about what might have been but is not.
RevRandy . 0,3And the problem is that we know this,
RevRandy . 0,3but compound our perceptions of guilt about our roles in the loss with our knowledge of our focus on unreality.
RevRandy . 0,3
RevRandy . 0,3"So when one in grief speaks about feeling guilty and talks about what they should have done, two tapes are playing:
RevRandy . 0,3One about 'should haves'
RevRandy . 0,3and one about 'now' when they are focusing on trying to deny the loss and not on trying to live with the reality.
RevRandy . 0,3The only escape from this is reality.
RevRandy . 0,3And, unless we are talking about murderers, then no one caused it who needs to blame self.
RevRandy . 0,3So 'what if' is a way to avoid the reality of loss.
RevRandy . 0,3And accepting the reality of
RevRandy . 0,3And accepting the reality of loss is the only way to have a continuation of the relationship.
RevRandy . 0,3
RevRandy . 0,3"I give you a less tragic version:
RevRandy . 0,3Son about to be married to someone who is not parents' first choice.
RevRandy . 0,3At reception parents have choice to dwell on what might have been and thus lose relationship with son as he is.
RevRandy . 0,3Or they can relate to son as he is--even with the reservations and sense of loss and pain.
RevRandy . 0,3So, too, with death.
RevRandy . 0,3When a person dies--or a duck, for that matter--
RevRandy . 0,3we can either grieve and relate to their presence in our lives as real dead people, or ducks as appropriate to the species;
RevRandy . 0,3or we can deny the reality and avoid the loss and continue to put them in their own past, and that would not be good.
RevRandy . 0,3If the question is 'what if,' that's about the past.
RevRandy . 0,3If the question is 'now what,'
RevRandy . 0,3that is about the present... and remember, you get a future worth having only by being present and looking forward.
RevRandy . 0,3
RevRandy . 0,3"Another example:
RevRandy . 0,3Couple suffers miscarriage.
RevRandy . 0,3If they focus on that loss they will not find the gift of the child waiting to be added to their lives
RevRandy . 0,3through birth or adoption.
RevRandy . 0,3And people know this but cannot act on it, so they feel guilty about dwelling there.
RevRandy . 0,3But they see it as guilt about what might have been when, in fact, it is about what might be.
RevRandy . 0,3Ok. So that's the story... of a man named Brady.
RevRandy . 0,3
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RevRandy . 0,3"In grief we often mistake the elements and assume it is all about the loss,
RevRandy . 0,3but much of it is also about our reaction to the loss;
RevRandy . 0,3and our reactions we can control, but our losses we cannot.
RevRandy . 0,3We mistake them because, at this spiritual level, we are still sorting out physical versus spiritual realities.
RevRandy . 0,3In the human sphere we live on the line between knowledge of this and ignorance.
RevRandy . 0,3And in that land of comprehending and not, we cannot differentiate often.
RevRandy . 0,3We are hard wired with emotions and physical realities connected more than spiritual ones.
RevRandy . 0,3And now a quiz. How many quarts in a peck. None, only a duck. I gotta go." (3/22/2000 - G#61)
RevRandy . So, I'll give you a few moments to read this all
WhiteTiger . lol... I don't get to gadfly this time... I agree with the key element there
RevRandy . what would say is the key element, WT
WhiteTiger . much of it is also about our reaction to the loss;
WhiteTiger . RevRandy . and our reactions we can control, but our losses we cannot.
Gina . its soo true I mean, so much of grief is tied up with what would things have been like if they had lived and why couldnt they have?
* Elissa faints from the shock of hearing wt agree
Hyper^noodle . lol...don't worry .... I marked it on the wall!
WhiteTiger . grief is emotion... emotion is response to the stimulus... and we can choose our rsponses
Elissa . lolol
RevRandy . Accepting the reality of the loss is a very important step
Elissa . yes, gina... so much of our reaction to loss has to do with our own loss of control
RevRandy . and then we can begin to be open to our reaction as a prime element
* WhiteTiger sneaks up on Elissa with a bucket o' icewater
RevRandy . ((((children, behave))))
Hyper^noodle . I had never had contact with someone who died before and that was what held me in check the one time I was stuck in grief. I did not know HOW to react.
Prosub . mine was murder
WhiteTiger . awwww... can't we have FUN, instead? *scuffs toe of shoe*
* Elissa thaws out and looks around for a cream pie
Prosub . but the murderer killed himself as well
Elissa . hyper, that is not at all unusual
Gina . my loss was three of my children from a genetic disorder. I still go through baby fever.
Hyper^noodle . lol...it was for me :)
WhiteTiger . that has to be a strange one, prosub
Hyper^noodle . It was burying him again each time a contact happened.
RevRandy . in such a situation, prosub, so much of our attention gets focused on the loss, the murder, the details --- and we have a need to work all of that out, tell the story, etc
Elissa . ((((((gina0)))))
Prosub . that's true Randy
Gina . how long ago was it hypernoodle?
Prosub . and I had to go to a funeral for someone else we know
RevRandy . (((((Gina))))))))))
Prosub . I opened all those wounds again
Hyper^noodle . Sept 23, 1998
Hyper^noodle . but it is all better now :)
Elissa . hyper, in our culture we're taught not to deal with loss
Gina . you know, what gets me tho, is sometimes just when you really feel the grief is when people expect you to be over it. have any of you noticed that?
Elissa . just get over it and get on with your life is the message we're given
RevRandy . in fact we are often taught covert ways of denying the death and the loss
Gina . guess that relates to what you just said elissa sigh.
Hyper^noodle . I am talking about possessions of his physically appearing. I had never had that happen.
Prosub . Randy and Elissa, I have to go due to weather. May I contcat you sometime soon. I really need to talk
Elissa . yep gina
Hyper^noodle . awww Prosub....so sorry
Gina . now THAT is interesting hyper!
Prosub . ty Hyper
Elissa . of course, prosub, anytime... and come back later if you can
Gina . HUGS prosub.
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Elissa . hey jg :)
Gina . hi Judith :)
RevRandy . hello JudithG!
JudithG . Hi Kids......Elissa, Gina, Randy, Hyper, Lynne, Pro, and WhiteTiger
JudithG . so sorry to be LATE!
Prosub . Thank you
* Elissa marks in her book: 1 demerit for lateness for JG... suspended on account of she's the boss lady :)
Prosub . I will try to get back
JudithG . LOL....
Gina . ah she is just being fashionable {G}
Hyper^noodle . lol.Elissa
* JudithG takes the wet noodle rap!
Prosub . hi Judith
RevRandy . As we were saying -- many people in our society do try to deny the losses - one of the ways they do that is by insisting that people get "over it" on an artificial time scale
WhiteTiger . don't suspend... defer sentence.. then ya can hang onto a bit of leverage ;)
Elissa . hmmm... clever wt
RevRandy . But, I suspect that most of us are well aware
Prosub . Peace to all
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RevRandy . of the many thoughts about dealng meaningfully with loss .....
RevRandy . but where I get hooked on Rikkity's stuff is in the coming three sections --
RevRandy . (help - I'm hooked on some of her stuff ... it is creeping out of the closet)
Hyper^noodle . lol
Elissa . (hooked is a technical term)
RevRandy . 0,2"Stage 2. Return. We return to where we were before the loss, and have to
RevRandy . 0,2deal with the fact we are not there anymore. We first deal with the other
RevRandy . 0,2leaving, then we have to deal with the fact that we've left, too--very
RevRandy . 0,2similar parts to the Stage 1, as in denial, etc., etc., etc. If a person
RevRandy . 0,2doesn't go back and discover how they, too, have moved on, they will be
RevRandy . 0,2haunted by ‘back then' and ‘once upon a time' as if that were now--and it
RevRandy . 0,2isn't. Ok.
RevRandy . I was fascinated to hear this stage, for now the focus shifts from the one who leaves to those of us who stay
RevRandy . and this Point to Ponder I think relates to this:
RevRandy . 0,3"It's time to trade realities for memories.
RevRandy . 0,3Closure is good; without it there will be no new openings.
RevRandy . 0,3But if you can see through the tears and pain, and to let go of the past as detail, then the future becomes possible.
RevRandy . 0,3
RevRandy . 0,3"I have promises to keep and miles to go before I'm complete.
RevRandy . 0,3I can't get where I need to go stopping in places past; never was one to do so.
RevRandy . 0,3Keep in touch with those I love as they are becoming, not as they were.
RevRandy . 0,3Anything less keeps me and them from learning.
RevRandy . 0,3What we need now is the future 'us's' and not the old ones--except as symbols of continuity.
RevRandy . 0,3
RevRandy . 0,3"In an ultimate sense, when we look back to what was we move our spiritual evolution backwards;
RevRandy . 0,3too much and you've disassembled yourself. Ugh. Hey guys, onward and forward." (5/24/97 - G#39)
WhiteTiger . wasn't the focus there to begin with, in the first part? there was that central passage about controlling responses...
Elissa . focus of what, wt?
Hyper^noodle . When you get to the question part will you tell me? :)
WhiteTiger . RR remarked that the focus shifted to the survivor(s) in the second part
RevRandy . It was hinted at in the first part -- that we needed to have a focus on the loss without denying it
Elissa . right... o ok i see
RevRandy . But here the reason becomes more explicit
Elissa . in the first part, the griever's focus is on the lost loved one
RevRandy . first it is about us getting a focus on what is happening, and now the why for a separate focus
Elissa . trying to control the uncontrollable, etc... in the second part,
Elissa . one needs to revisit what was and realize that not only the loved one is gone, but also part of themselves as they were
Hyper^noodle . Is the white on blue part a direct quote from Rikkety?
RevRandy . the "I" of that time before is also lost in a sense - remembered but no longer operable
Elissa . all the colored stuff is
Hyper^noodle . thanks
Gina . I can see this stage as well, and I can see a difference in myself even from six months ago and think I am a better person because of it.
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Elissa . yes, gina, to see that change in ourselves is what this is about
RevRandy . Thanks Gina - it is interesting to see oneself moving through these stages
Gina . hi Amy :)
amy . hi gina
Elissa . if we accept the loss without seeing ourselves as changed, then we get stuck
RevRandy . and I suspect we all know people who spent a long time focusing only on the loss as something external to themselves
Gina . hmm my mother comes to mind.........
RevRandy . how so
Gina . well she lost her sight from the same genetic disorder, and she is having a difficult time as seeing herself as different because of it she spends all her time in I wish I was stage sigh.
Gina . It has been 12 years almost!
Elissa . she may need to see the differences in herself... even deliberately make some changes... journaling can help a lot with that, too
RevRandy . it is very possible for people to get stuck there -- in part, IMHO, because the pain of that part seems so hard they dread what anything else might be like
Gina . well it would have to be on tape as she cant see tho.
Elissa . tape works
Gina . she cant see life continuing with any quality because she cant see. that is the sad part.
WhiteTiger . I've sen some clinging to the pain as a tangible shred of "what was"... fearing to let it go cause the pain is identified with what no longer is
Elissa . what i tell some people is to make small changes they can control--even changing your brand of toothpaste or deodorant can show you that it's possible to change in positive ways with control
Gina . you know white tiger that is an excellent observation
Elissa . great point, wt!
Elissa . the pain is seen as all that's left of the relationship
* WhiteTiger takes his turn at swooning ;)
Hypernoodle . lol
Gina . hehe
Gina . waves stuff under his nose to bring him to.
Elissa . it's terrifying to think of that being gone and the relationship becoming a complete void
WhiteTiger . glack!
RevRandy . and the pain becomes familiar
WhiteTiger . yup... the last bit that can be savored
Gina . I think she really lost all sense of her identity since she no longer can do the things she could when she lost her sight. she needs to do new things that are apart of her but she cant seem to accept that sigh.
WhiteTiger . nasty as the taste may be, it still has undertones of the good stuff it started as
* Elissa takes a turn at throwing icewater lol
RevRandy . but there is an irony in getting stuck there, for the pain of loss carried on too long keeps us from finding some way to mitigate the loss
* WhiteTiger duckth
Gina . enfolds herself in a rain coat in case Elissa misses LOL.
RevRandy . Gina - yes - she could have lots more if she did not focus on what she has lost
Elissa . be afraid, gina, be very afraid lol
Hypernoodle . lol
Gina . oh you mean you throw about as well as I do? heehh
WhiteTiger . it can be hard to separate self from self image
* Hypernoodle moves to the safe side of the room
RevRandy . yes - and when we create (even subconsciously) that self-image, we become protective of it
Elissa . gina, it might help her to make some small changes with control... not necessarily anything that has to do with the loss
* Elissa apologizes... she is very slow tonight
WhiteTiger . and in a sense, I think that is what grief is about... part of what we have used to define ourselves, to ourselves, is absent... and the closer we held that part, the more radical the adjustment
Gina . well I will suggest it Elissa and see how it goes.
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RevRandy . but to have truly suffered the loss (not get caught in an eternal grieving over it) means that one must change also --
Gina . hi fang
fang . hi
WhiteTiger . howdy fang
Elissa . wt you are very wise
* Elissa awaits the swooning
WhiteTiger . just nuts... ask hyper ;)
Elissa . hey fang!!!
RevRandy . if we have not changed (been changed) by the loss, then did we actually lose anything?
RevRandy . fang!
WhiteTiger . good zinger, R ;)
Gina . we didnt gain anything either tho. and the loss was wasted on us, the lesson to be learned.
Elissa . ooooooooo good one, rr
Hypernoodle . (Tiger is nuts)
WhiteTiger . lol
Elissa . but isn't that what we're trying to avoid
Elissa . yes gina!
RevRandy . yes gina - we may think we have learned, but we did not learn, or did not remember
Elissa . but it is so scary for some people... they don't know how much pain they can endure
fang . amen
RevRandy . and of course, if we have changed, then that calls into question all we have been telling ourselves about ourselves
RevRandy . our status quo shifts -- so it is easier to deal with external shift rather than an internal shift
Gina . well, I think part of it is attitude, how you see life, shows partially how well you deal with things for instance if you see life as a learning experience, you embrace change more readily.
Elissa . it means we have to rediscover ourselves, and we often don't feel we have the energy to do that after a major loss
fang . amen to that too
RevRandy . .... that is why, E, I think grieving is a process, not just an event -- as we need to experience over a length of available energy
Elissa . yes, gina... and i think hope plays a major role in this part of the process as well
WhiteTiger . off base parallel observation= Elissa is right about the pain anticipation/dread... hardcore martial artists very seldom go through the major grief cycles... leaning to master one sort (physical pain) carries over to the others... (spiritual, emotional, mental)
Gina . it still takes time. I think you are right Elissa, a lot of people dont have the energy to continue so they put on hold for a time. and some forget to get off hold!
Elissa . that's interesting, wt... how do they go about mastering the pain of loss?
Gina . true white tiger same process, different field but same lesson
RevRandy . or get so comfortable with it on hold
fang . or don't know how to
WhiteTiger . pain is pain... it comes in different flavors, but it's just pain
RevRandy . well, folks it is now 10 ET, and time for a break, before we come back for the last 2 stages
Gina . being numb is easy for some, it just means tho you can never fully experience joy again but some are willing to give up joy in order to give up sorrow they are happy to settle for existence.
RevRandy . you can keep talking away (or throwing water, or ice, or whatever) but the Rev is breaking (crunnnnnnnch)
*** RevRandy is now known as RevRandybrb
Elissa . wow that was fast... let's make it about 8 minutes instead of 10... we've got lots more!
Elissa . bbbbbbbbrrrrrrrrreeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaaaaakkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk
WhiteTiger . it's not seen as loss, per se, Elissa... the pain of training is the process for gain... that "knowing" carries over into loss situations too
WhiteTiger . good one Gina :) (was scrolling)
Elissa . i see, wt... i think i've reached that point now
*** Elissa is now known as Elissabrb
RevRandybrb . wt - that's a good point -- if we gain a larger focus, we can then see beyond the specifics of any one stage, even the hardest ones
RevRandybrb . (how did I say that if I am gone?)
WhiteTiger . yup :) pain is jus pain
Gina . hehe I dont know mental telepathy? LOL
Hypernoodle . maybe a smart keyboard?
WhiteTiger . ecto typing ;)
RevRandybrb . autowriting
*** RevRandybrb is now known as RevRandy
*** Elissabrb is now known as Elissa
RevRandy . well, it think it is time to get restarted ---
Elissa . yep yep yep
Elissa . let's go!
RevRandy . and to move onto to Rikkity's stage 4:
RevRandy . 0,2"Stage 3. Reconnection. Only when both of the parties are in a moved-on
RevRandy . 0,2state can they progress and relate. Some folks do well at letting go of the
RevRandy . 0,2dead person but cling to their past selves; and others move on fine but
RevRandy . 0,2never recognize the loss of the other. You need to both see the other as
RevRandy . 0,2gone in the familiar terms and you as being changed or different if you are
RevRandy . 0,2to connect. And what connects is not the superficial of the past but the
RevRandy . 0,2essential that transcends.
Elissa . what happened to stage 3?
Elissa . lol
RevRandy . 0,2
RevRandy . 0,2"So, do you relate and connect to me as black or white--or rather black and
RevRandy . 0,2white... moo--no, you connect to the ‘me' that deals with differences. The
RevRandy . 0,2black and white fall away, but what I learned and remembered stays. So
RevRandy . 0,2connection is spirit to spirit, not person to person. And it's the same for
RevRandy . 0,2me, because now I see y'all as parents and as parents with gender change and
RevRandy . 0,2as shipmates and siblings and partner and spouse and much more; and,
RevRandy . 0,2therefore, much less as all that falls away. If I am ‘me' when I am male and
RevRandy . 0,2female, white, black, red, yellow, green... huh... fat, short, tall, skinny,
RevRandy . 0,2wise, dumb, etc., then none of that matters. So, connection is the stage in
RevRandy . 0,2which two spirits deprived of their physical connections reconnect. And...
RevRandy . (hey look, don't make trouble with the help ... we are doing the best we can ... especially tonight)
RevRandy . yes it is stage 3 (what was I thinking)
RevRandy . to speak about this more, I offer his Point to Ponder:
RevRandy . 0,3"Grief is a balancing act, as we so often say,
RevRandy . 0,3but when we speak of balance we are really talking about honoring and encouraging and dealing
RevRandy . 0,3with all the facets of who we are.
RevRandy . 0,3You don't need to give anything up.
RevRandy . 0,3You can cherish the past and the love you knew, and still have the present and the future.
RevRandy . 0,3You can remember, be, and dream.
RevRandy . 0,3You can hold onto all the memories you have of us. We don't mind that.
RevRandy . 0,3In fact it touches us and gratifies us that you remember and care.
RevRandy . 0,3We ask only that you leave a little room--just a small opening--
RevRandy . 0,3to admit into that space in your broken heart who we are now, and what we are becoming.
RevRandy . 0,3If you can do that, you can still have us;
RevRandy . 0,3and you will meet us on that bridge of connection and we will clasp hands and grow together,
RevRandy . 0,3each on his or her own side, and each in his or her own way. And in time you will join us here,
RevRandy . 0,3and we will snuggle up with you on a cozy pale blue sofa and watch our favorite movie
RevRandy . 0,3and talk about the old times when you were there and we were here, and all we learned from one another.
RevRandy . 0,3Please keep these things in mind, use them to help you and they will, and so will I.
RevRandy . 0,3I love you, an
RevRandy . 0,3I love you, and bless you on this difficult but o so rewarding journey. Goodnight." (5/23/99 - G#52)
RevRandy . The point of it all, for me, is that we find ways to connect in the new reality in which we are
RevRandy . Ericka is dead, but Rikkity is with us
RevRandy . and in coming to be able to know both of those as true, and that I was changed by the former and the latter true,
RevRandy . I can now make a connection
RevRandy . that looks forward
Elissa . and to know that, we had to know that we all had changed
RevRandy . yep -- change is never unilateral
WhiteTiger . make it, or just acknowledge what was there from the get go?
RevRandy . and denial of change does not mean that change did not happen
Elissa . and also that the change was not essential
Elissa . what was there, wt, and what is possible in the present and future
RevRandy . what endures is not changed, and therefore what does not change is essential
WhiteTiger . :)
WhiteTiger . love is the tie that can not cease, and can not change...
RevRandy . and one of the tasks of grief, it seems to be, is to discover what has not changed
Elissa . in deepest grief we don't feel that anything can remain unchanged... part of the process is separating the essence from the roles and physical stuff we've identified with
WhiteTiger . all that can alter is it's expression, imo
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RevRandy . welcome back - storm over?
Elissa . wb prosub!
Prosub . yes...for now...TY
Gina . you know, I have to share something. when my last child Sara, was dying in the hospital, (she recovered temporarily and then died later in a few months) I was praying and asking God why I had to go through this hell again I had lost two already. I was informed true love does not exist in hell and that I loved Sara so it was not hell. and that I was to learn more than most so that is why.
Elissa . o gina, that's beautiful
RevRandy . Gina - I like what you just shared ... especially about love not being part of hell
Gina . It is what calmed and centered me when I was going through the storm :)
Elissa . who told you that, gina?
Prosub . when does the anger go away?
RevRandy . Earlier there was a mention of "hope" and I feel the need to share once again what we have been told about that because it comes up so often in my work
Gina . God did, it was what came to me when I was praying in answer to my prayer :)
WhiteTiger . when the expectations are released, I believe, prosub
Elissa . prosub, when you deal with it and understand where it's coming from
RevRandy . hope is not a belief that things will turn out a certain way, but that on the other side of anything there is still meaning
Gina . I like that Rev :)
Prosub . I know where it's coming from. But there's nothing I can do about
Gina . well its because you can intellectually see, prosub but it takes time to emotionally feel and accept what you intellectually know
Elissa . prosub, then stop fighting it... accept it as part of the process and know that it will diminish when you're ready to let it go
RevRandy . Prosub - perhaps as you find more of the connection even across death, you will let go of some of that anger
Prosub . I hope so. The truth is...I'm not sure if I'm mad about the senseless death, or the fact i wasn't there
RevRandy . I know that I was very angry at the man who killed Ericka -- until I realized (with her help) that such a focus of my energy did not help me to connect to her
* JudithG loved Rikkity's perspective on the 4 phases of bereavement to creation
RevRandy . well, indeed, let's move on to that stage 4
Elissa . it's pretty awesome to me, too, JG :) and very helpful in grief counseling
RevRandy . 0,2"Stage 4 is Creation, as in new things coming from the connection. In most
RevRandy . 0,2lives, we connect to people over time to get the same old c r a p (another
RevRandy . 0,2technical term). In fact, in most life connections we don't want the other
RevRandy . 0,2to change--we fear it even. But in this reconnection we welcome the creative
RevRandy . 0,2changes because we know they do not change the essence, only the
RevRandy . 0,2product--and that's good.
RevRandy . 0,2
RevRandy . 0,2"You, Dad, and I once created a vision of freedom together. You, Mom, and I
RevRandy . 0,2did a similar number. We then might later create something else. They are
RevRandy . 0,2all the transient expressions of our inner beings; all seeking to move to
RevRandy . 0,2fulfillment. And here's a side thought: You can't move to fulfillment
RevRandy . 0,2without wandering down a few wrong turns. And so, if you don't allow change,
RevRandy . 0,2how will you know a good turn from a wrong one. Maybe what is is the wrong
RevRandy . 0,2one, and the change gets you back on track.
* JudithG reminds Prosub that this is a 'process' than has no 'time' limitations......just a 'natural' progression
Elissa . prosub: "I'm not sure if I'm mad about the senseless death, or the fact i wasn't there" sounds to me like guilt more than anger...
Elissa . which is a way of maintaining the illusion of control
Elissa . (go ahead, randy)
RevRandy . no - I think this is a good point -- and reminds me of the PtoP about fear and guilt being two ends of the same pole
RevRandy . one with no sense of control for something, and the other assuming full control
Prosub . Elissa, you may be right
RevRandy . and anger being about not being on that spectrum where it is comfortable
Gina . I agree with Elissa Prosub, it sounds like guilt. I dont think you need to feel guilty Prosub, it wasnt meant for you to be there, and your friend is all right where she is, and more than all right for that matter!
Prosub . Actually, may I share something?
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Gina . hi Viola
WhiteTiger . isn't it interesting how often we are taught/expected to assume or exercise control of another's path? As if we are qualified to screw up more than the one life the creator has handed to us for this time ;)
Elissa . prosub, it may help you to think about the fact that there really was nothing you could have done to prevent what happened... and that can be a scary thought
Elissa . hahaha wt
Hypernoodle . :)
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Gina . lol wt! good one!
RevRandy . Anymoo, as she would say, here is a PtoP to illustrate stage 4 in some way
RevRandy . 0,6"The whole is always greater than the sum of its parts.
RevRandy . 0,6That doesn't diminish the value of the parts, but the real picture is always larger.
RevRandy . 0,6A trite example: New York City is great,
RevRandy . 0,6but there is a larger greatness of many cities taken together as our cultural center.
RevRandy . 0,6In Europe they cherish the culture, but choose one city as culture capital each year,
RevRandy . 0,6but know the whole is the real greatness.
RevRandy . 0,6So if you were to focus on me, say, and miss the larger reality, that would
RevRandy . 0,6So if you were to focus on me, say, and miss the larger reality, that would be a loss.
RevRandy . 0,6
RevRandy . 0,6"I am not the object here, or even the subject, but only the way or the passage.
RevRandy . 0,6Like Jesus always said, it wasn't about him but what larger things he shared.
RevRandy . 0,6
RevRandy . 0,6"If the point of all is increasing complexity, and we achieve that by coming together into entities,
RevRandy . 0,6then aren't the entities what are important--not the units.
RevRandy . 0,6As long as we focus on the building blocks, we never build anything.
RevRandy . 0,6You have to be ready to accept them as finished, or at least ready, at some point.
RevRandy . 0,6'No, not yet.' 'No, not yet.' 'If not now, when.'
RevRandy . 0,6Read the whole Hillel quotation; substitute all the pronouns;
RevRandy . 0,6see its deep wisdom. Get yourself ready, as treely as you can." (4/24/96 - V#17)
Prosub . The day my friends' ashes were sprinkled over a lake, was the very day my teenage daughter changed her life to follow in the church The vision of got of my friend was that she has chosen to "guide" my daughter so she doesn't make the same mistakes
WhiteTiger . hallelujah! that's as close s I've ever sen anyone else come to saying it :))))
Prosub . Forgive me for interrupting
Gina . oh that is sweet prosub.
Elissa . that is meant to lead you toward healing, prosub... follow it
RevRandy . No - prosub - that's ok -- that must be comforting for you
Gina . hi pogo
Elissa . wt, you rejoiced? lol
WhiteTiger . best PtoP yet ;)
Elissa . :)
RevRandy . When I read this PtoP, I thought about how loss and grief are parts of a process be which the parts become more focused upon than the whole
Hypernoodle . :)
Prosub . I did feel better after that
JudithG . wonderful insight, Prosub!
RevRandy . but it is in the whole that our co-creativity comes
Prosub . Judith, that wasn't just "insight"...it was the "message" i got from her
* JudithG has found in her research, that often a deceased loved one will 'reach back' to us to help us not make the 'same' mistakes...welcome their guidance!
JudithG . understand, Prosub
Prosub . yes that's true
JudithG . {{{{{Prosub}}}}}}
Prosub . (((((((((((((Judith and all)))))))))))))))))))) TY
Prosub . {crying}
RevRandy . isn't that what this process is about -- letting those who go before help us, if we can be open to it?
Elissa . there's no "back" jg... we and they are always connected
* JudithG sense Prosub is a wondrous woman of great sensitivity, especially to others
JudithG . thanks, Elissa......agree
Prosub . I try
RevRandy . And think of what you and she are able to do creatively by being open to an ongoing connection
Prosub . The "gift" is in my family
Prosub . But I have buried and ignored it
Elissa . randy, please continue... i loved what you said before
Prosub . please continue
RevRandy . what did I say before?
JudithG . yes, and well possess this 'gift' which is our birthright, even tho ignored for many years or generations
WhiteTiger . lol
Prosub . I'm so sorry I interrupted
JudithG . RevRandy . but it is in the whole that our co-creativity comes
RevRandy . aha - yes - it is so important to see that in our connection, not our sense of separation, that we find our co-creativity
Elissa . When I read this PtoP, I thought about how loss and grief are parts of a process by which the parts become more focused upon than the whole
WhiteTiger . no prob, prosub... this is a flighty bunch.. the breeze blows, and the course changes ;)
Elissa . lol wt
* JudithG winking furiously looking around for birds in flight!
* Elissa floats up to the ceiling
Gina . throws her a rope eheheh
RevRandy . I am feeling alar (always wanted to use that word)
Prosub . I guess I'm still in the phase of needing to talk. But I want to hear too
* JudithG ducks as Elissa whizzes overhead
RevRandy . duck - where?
JudithG . ROFL
Prosub . lol
Elissa . pro, we ALL need to talk... don't apologize for what you need... we'll tell you to shut up if we need to :)
Gina . heheeh oh so direct!
WhiteTiger . hey, is that the duck from the first PtoP?
Prosub . LOL....ok deal!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Elissa . yep :)
Hypernoodle . lol
Elissa . roflmao wt
* JudithG remembering now how much she has missed the wit and wisdom of Elissa, Randy, and Rikkity!
Elissa . quack quack
RevRandy . that's the duck -- and let's not even talk about incoming mops
Elissa . ((((((JG))))))
JudithG . {{{{{{ Elissa, Randy, and Rikkity!}}}}}}}
Prosub . lol
Gina . as long as its not duck ala orange hehe
RevRandy . we are a fun-loving bunch
JudithG . lol
JudithG . we sure are!
Elissa . i had that on my birthday! yummmmmm
RevRandy . but all seriousness aside -- I think we need to think about this point a little more
Elissa . ok, guys, let's settle down and let randy be profound and brilliant
Prosub . ok....waiting for more profound and brilliant
RevRandy . we have a choice -- to try to go it alone (that's the route of being with the loss forever)
RevRandy . or of trying to find ourselves so we can reconnect
RevRandy . now if our ultimate path, through our many lives, is to find connection and benefit from participation in an even more complex entity
RevRandy . then we need to do some in connection ... reaching out from ourselves
RevRandy . the future, the growth, the learning, will not come from reaching back, or in, but in opening ourselves to those essential connections that transcend change and loss
WhiteTiger . yep :)
RevRandy . and when we are in touch with them, we find that we open up our wells of energy and insight to join with the energy and insights of others
JudithG . makes sense
Prosub . lightbulb is beginning to flicker
RevRandy . to be creative .... what we need is not what we can create in ourselves - that is a closed system
WhiteTiger . "love is the inclusion of another within the perceived boundaries of "self"
JudithG . kewl thought, WT
RevRandy . what we need is what transcends us and points to even more complex essential, changeless possibilities
RevRandy . yep WT
WhiteTiger . ergo, love is neither the grail nor the goal, but the passageway :)
JudithG . so, the 'key' to expansion of ourselves is to 'reach out' to others, even when in the depths of our disillusionment?
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Gina . hi Deni
* JudithG welcomes Deni
Elissa . ((((((deni-face))))))!!!!!!!!
RevRandy . I agree -- and the goal, if there be a goal, is beyond this level understanding, so if you can know the goal, at least try to be sure you are pointed in the right direction - future, inclusion, connection
Deni . hi Gina
Prosub . so I need to reach out more instead of burying this?
Deni . Lissa-pooh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Deni . hi Judy :)
RevRandy . Deni!!!
JudithG . yes, Prosub...that is what I 'see'
Deni . hey Rev!!!!!!
Prosub . Hi Deni
JudithG . reaching out is a 'basic' principle here from Rikkity
Elissa . i think we need to do both... reach inside AND outside of ourselves
Deni . hi Prosub :)
WhiteTiger . perhaps especially then... disillusionment is a time we tend to hold private... not to be sen lest we be judged lacking... willingness to share even our funkies is part of the deal, r should be (iimo)
Prosub . TY Rikkity
RevRandy . yes - JudithG - and maybe we can't reach out, but we can try .... we can reach for reaching out until we can do it
Elissa . o that is very true, wt!
JudithG . yes, as my old friend Ram Dass says: We reach out, God reaches.....if we don't reach out, God knows from nuttin'
Elissa . so many people in grief keep to themselves so they won't "disturb" or "upset" others
RevRandy . I think in our times of grief we need to remember that the point is not to do it "right" but to be working at it
Prosub . BINGO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Gina . I know better to bawl on everyones shoulder LOL.
WhiteTiger . lol
JudithG . 'asking' is the opening of our inner doors
RevRandy . What would a world look like in which we could be open about grief and loss, and it would not disturb others -- and they could then be freed to open up to us
Elissa . imho, we actually do others a favor when we express our grief... it gives them permission to do the same when it's their turn... and it WILL be their turn at some point
Prosub . I have always been a "never bother anybody" person
Gina . that is a problem prosub cause it means you keep it locked up inside yourself instead of dealing
Prosub . yes I do Gina
Gina . but the good news is you know your tendency so you can strive to change it :)
* JudithG finds my liberation in
JudithG . 'admitting' my struggles to someone else
RevRandy . One of the things I learned in the process of the past five years is to not get caught up in the perception of what disturbs others -
WhiteTiger . RR- or the inevitable expansion of that question: what would the world be if we had a framework that did not mandate we keep 90% of ourselves hidden? picture the world with al the suppressed abilities in full bloom
Prosub . FYI..... I was the "forgotten child"
RevRandy . so now when I am seated in a diner on the train, I speak about Ericka's death, and about our communications with her -- and yes, some people get uncomfortable, but you know what, an equal number want to talk about it and are free to talk about their similar experiences
Elissa . yes, JG.. that's what people find so healing about counseling... sometimes all it takes is someone to listen without judging
JudithG . indeed, WT
Elissa . imagine a world in which everyone could be who they are
RevRandy . yes = WT = if we saw the world not only as abundant - but ourselves as part of that abundance
Elissa . what an amazing place... kind of like this room :)
Prosub . without fear of persecution
JudithG . indeed!
RevRandy . or judgement
WhiteTiger . and thee is the key word again... fear
Gina . HUGS prosub figured you needed one :)
Prosub . TY (((((((((Gina))))))))
Prosub . I do
WhiteTiger . seems to be under every dungheap ya put a pitchfork to
RevRandy . 0,2"So Loss, Return, Reconnection, Creation: my stages of bereavement. Because
RevRandy . 0,2you are going to be trapped in the loss unless you can finally feel that you
RevRandy . 0,2and the lost other are once again dynamically and creatively relating.
RevRandy . 0,2Otherwise it will all be about the past, theirs or yours; and hey, you know
RevRandy . 0,2what you can't get to the future by." (7/22/2000)
JudithG . so true, Rikkity!
RevRandy . These were Rikkity's closing words on this theory, and I add to them this past Point to Ponder
RevRandy . 0,3"I am much more than any physical image of me.
RevRandy . 0,3The 'me' of your vision and memory are not the 'me' of me now.
RevRandy . 0,3 0,3Look, I've given up much of the physical world. I will, sooner or later, be back looking much different.
RevRandy . 0,3I am moving towards that existence. I am not physical any longer--or not yet.
RevRandy . 0,3In the chrysalis do you see worm or butterfly. Neither. Learn and remember.
RevRandy . 0,3
RevRandy . 0,3"You see, this is the problem.
RevRandy . 0,3If you think life is one go-around then everybody stays as they were; but at what age?
RevRandy . 0,3And if we go around a lot (as we do) who are we physically--then, now, or later.
RevRandy . 0,3The constantly changing and evolving constant in our lives is spiritual, not physical.
RevRandy . 0,3So try to see me in your heart and soul, not your mind and eyes." (4/18/97 - G#35)
JudithG . {{{{{Rikkity}}}}}}
Gina . that is beautiful :)
Elissa . i remember those words often, and think i'm learning to do that
Gina . hard huh?
Prosub . (((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((Rikkity, RevRandy, and Elissa)))))))))))))))))))))))))))
Elissa . very hard, gina
RevRandy . merci
RevRandy . but aren't the hard ones the ones that help us grow?
WhiteTiger . "the packaging has nothing to do with the contents"
Elissa . and yet very comforting at the same time... it means i haven't lost who she really is :)
Elissa . like wt said :)
* JudithG thanks you all, especially Elissa, Randy & Rikkity, for this brief time of sharing.....and communing......Loving you.....good night.......
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fang . (((((((((((revrandy, elissa, rikkity)))))))))))
Elissa . bye jg lol
Prosub . good night Judith
WhiteTiger . that was quick
WhiteTiger . lol
RevRandy . the real "her" moves beyond any limitations of the physical world (and of loss) as we know it
Elissa . ((((((fang)))))
Gina . you know, when Sara died, I explained to my daughter April that what we buried was the shoe box, the outer form, but her soul, the part of her that likes red etc is the part that went to heaven. its the important part :)
fang . oh only to have rikkity's insights
WhiteTiger . Gina :)
RevRandy . Gina -- well expressed
RevRandy . and that part can never be truly lost
Gina . forgot to say that part is the shoes LOL
WhiteTiger . lol
Deni . :)
RevRandy . probably some ruby red slippers
Hypernoodle . :)
Elissa . lol gina
Prosub . LOL, my daughter was born in Kansas
Gina . probably Rev
Gina . heheheh prosub
Elissa . lol prosub
RevRandy . Well, folks, we need to share some schedule information with y'all
WhiteTiger . lol
fang . oh no
fang . where ya going?
RevRandy . Next week (7/30) and the following week (8/6) we will be away
Elissa . folks, i can hardly believe it but it's rainbow song time already! thank you all for being here and sharing yourselves so openly
RevRandy . Off to Ocracoke Island .... to celebrate Elissa's Masters,
fang . :((((((((
Deni . yeah Elissa!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
RevRandy . so we will be back again on 8/13
WhiteTiger . wahoo, Elissa ;)
Elissa . so everyone come down and visit us!!!!!!!
Hypernoodle . Congratulations Elissa! :)
Gina . rainbow song? I was just telling a friend I was getting part of a rainbow mentally but didnt know why heheh
fang . a masters' in what????
* Elissa bows and accepts humbly the well-deserved accolades
* Playing txplay20.mrc to #SpiritualPersistence with 50ms delay
Elissa . 11,2!Elissa rainbow.mid 2,11 :o)
fang . congratulations elissa, the graduate ;)
Elissa . lol gina
WhiteTiger . (((((all)))))
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RevRandy . (it is in Community Counseling with an emphasis on Death and bereavement
Prosub . ok ty so much
RevRandy . be well all ---
Prosub . tonight has been great for me
RevRandy . thanks for sharing with us --
fang . night you great guys
Deni . I am sorry I missed the chat
RevRandy . y'all make this what it is
Prosub . I will come back
RevRandy . good
fang . have a good time
Deni . you guys have a GREAT vacation!!!!!
Prosub . yes
RevRandy . ty - we plan to
Gina . good night all :) be careful have a great time :)
Deni . a well deserved one for you both
RevRandy . nite all
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Deni . night lissa
Elissa . nite deni-face... glad you dropped by :)
Deni . night everyone...may you all dance with your Angels tonight and every night!
Session Close: Sun Jul 23 23:06:15 2000

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Last Update: 5/18/2013
Web Author:
the Rev Dr Randolph and Elissa Bishop Becker, M.Ed., LPC, NCC
Copyright 1999-2013 by the Rev Dr Randolph and Elissa Bishop Becker, M.Ed.