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Complete Re-emergence?

I'd like to share some confusion about the RC idea of "complete re-emergence." There is a pervasive undertone of guilt in myself, and that I've noticed in other Co-Counselors, that we're not good enough, we don't do enough, and if we could just think more clearly, we could clean up the world's problems pronto.

There is a reality of time and bodily energy that limits us all, however, no matter how many sessions or how much discharge we get. Our bodies require sleep. They require sustenance and exercise. We must work in order to support them with shelter and food. Meanwhile, every person I've met and counseled with desires to live well and be close. Each and every one is taking charge of his or her life just as quickly and decisively as he or she possibly can. All of us are solving problems and using our intelligence to think well about the world and our place in it. Aren't we all completely good right now, doing just what we should be doing? If we are completely good, isn't that the same as being "completely re-emerged"? Is the Reality Agreement the truth, or is it only an empty counseling technique? Have we identified where distress patterns end and the plain old human being, "this is me," "I am who I am," begins? An essential question I ask myself is what I would look like without my patterns. Well, I'd look pretty much the same, except I might take on leadership more willingly. But I take on leadership right now in as many ways as I have the time and energy for. In the back of my mind, all the time, is the idea that there's some perfect thing I could and should be doing, if I could only figure out what it is. Granted, that's a pattern, but a pattern that is aided and abetted by the RC idea of "complete re-emergence."

Based on comments I've heard over the last six years in RC, I suspect that some Co-Counselors believe that "complete re-emergence" might mean that we won't have to discharge anymore. I think that belief must also be examined. We are humans. We have feelings. Even if we had never been hurt we would still, on a daily basis, have feelings that fit whatever the newest situation warranted. We would still cry when something sad happened, get angry when injustice was done to us or our loved ones, laugh when we're embarrassed, and shake when we're afraid. We would still require sessions to keep clear and current, wouldn't we? So "complete re-emergence" wouldn't mean abandoning our sessions, would it?

And, once re-emerged, what then? What would change? There would still, presumably, be twenty-four hours in a day. There would still be a body to feed, clothe, and exercise. There would still be loved ones who require attention. Would I be so free from distress patterns and cloudy thinking that I could single-handedly clean up the environment, feed the world's hungry, and end all oppression everywhere? Wouldn't the worthy tasks still require much time and energy to accomplish? Unless "complete re-emergence" is proved by exhibiting magical powers, who is to say we aren't already re-emerged and moving just as boldly, and elegantly as human beings can? If I'm squinting just right, I can see all the people I meet as fully re-emerged humans, doing precisely what they need to do. In my clearest state, that's also the way I see myself.

We walk around with so many ideas and beliefs. "Complete re-emergence" is just another belief that must be taken on faith, similar to those of many other organizations, both secular and religious. It sounds to me very much like the idea of attaining "enlightenment" or "nirvana." Have we ever seen a re-emerged human we can model ourselves after? This unobtainable goal can become just one more way to beat ourselves up . . . one more device we use against ourselves. I think it slows me down. What about you?

"Complete re-emergence" sounds so far off and unobtainable. Perhaps another, more ordinary word, could be substituted. How about "balanced"? We could all decide it was alright to feel good about having certain areas of our life "in balance" or having "balanced out" certain patterns. The stated RC goal could be individually-defined, incremental steps based on how we perceive ourselves becoming more balanced. That might provoke more meaningful dialogue between us. "So, tell me the places where you're working to become balanced, and I'll tell you mine."

I'm dropping the idea of "complete re-emergence" because I see it as a detriment to my progress in the world. I think I will decide to believe that I am completely and fully re-emerged and that my thinking is already fully flexible and getting more so every day. I'd welcome anyone's thoughts on this topic.

Margaret Pevec
Cupertino, California, USA

Dear Margaret,

You are thinking hard about the apparent contradictions, but you seem to be unaware of one of the crucial advances in RC theory, which will make sense of the difficulties you are finding so burdensome. In all logical thinking prior to RC (except some intuitive, brilliant thoughts by ordinary people that have not often been noticed), the assumption has been that you can set up general laws or conclusions that apply to the past and the future as if the two were a single monolith. Actually, what you keep re-stating in your letter is based on the fact that anything in the past cannot be changed, that is, that if complete re-emergence were possible it would already have happened in the past, and this is not true. The past is completely determined, but the moment of present time divides it from the future sharply and clearly. The expectation engendered in the phrase "complete re-emergence" recognizes the fact that the future can be completely changed, and "complete re-emergence" is a useful and inspiring goal. If you feel guilty about the past, you are being irrational. At every moment of the past everyone did exactly the best that he or she could, and deserves no reproaches. Every moment of the future, however, is available to do something different, so "hitch your wagon to a star." "Complete re-emergence" is a good direction.

Harvey Jackins

Last modified: 2020-07-17 20:50:52+00