[Excerpt from Michael Speaks: September 2008]
QUESTION: I can see how anger can be useful (to show you when your boundaries have been breached), but Cruelty would seem to have no use. Why does it exist, and where does it come from?
MEntity: In the same way that anger is a defense, so is what you might consider to be cruelty. However, it is important to note that "cruelty" is often a relative experience. "Cruelty" is often not an intentional by-product of someone's action or choices, but a fragment who is disappointed might assign the label of "cruelty" to the event. For instance, when one fragment can legitimately sense the necessity of a separation within a relationship, but the other fragment is deeply attached and terrified of solitude, the choice of the fragment to move on can be interpreted as "cruel," when, indeed, it was one of the most loving choices the other fragment might have experienced to-date.
COMMENT: Oh, I see. I guess I was thinking of cruelty as intentionally trying to hurt another.
It is very important to differentiate the intentional act of cruelty from the interpretative act of defense against disappointment.
Acts of cruelty are often not just the result of intentions to hurt, but can be the result of neglect, denial, justification, and apathy.
With all of that being said, we can now more clearly respond to your original question of "why does it exist," and "from where does it come."
The legitimate act of cruelty, whether intentional or not, is a product of choice, of course, but a product of choice that is entirely self-preserving. Not "self-serving," but self-PRESERVING. There is a difference.
Self-preservation is an act of survival and fear, whereas self-serving is an act of giving/receiving.
Cruelty, then, "exists" because there are a myriad of ways in which the fearful body, mind, or heart can turn for survival purposes when these feel threatened. Even the most intentional, drawn-out acts of torture as a form of cruelty would still be generated from this very same thing.
Although all Chief Negative Features can bring about forms of cruelty, the most active, intentional forms of cruelty can generate from Arrogance and Self-Deprecation, and the most passive forms of cruelty can generate from Impatience and Martyrdom.
In terms of "cruelty having no use," we would agree. Cruelty is an unnecessary byproduct of fear and has no value beyond the false sense of defense.
QUESTION: Would you say anything about healing our bodies when they have been experiencing physical and emotional cruelty?
The response to your question might find more relevance on an individual basis, but what we can say in general is for any fragment who has experienced cruelty, whether real or imagined, 50% of the healing would come from the comprehension that the cruelty had nothing to do with you, or your value, your meaning, your worth, your choices, your past, future, etc. In short, it has nothing to do with you at all. For many who experience cruelty, real or imagined, healing is delayed by the constant questioning of WHY. Most often there is no answer to this question that would satisfy you. The focus for healing would be more beneficial in the direction of HOW, as in focusing on your rebuilding, your personal compassion and kindness, and your support.
Edited by Janet