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What is the six realms model for?

(This is the second of three posts scheduled for the weekend of Fluidity Forum. It was written the previous weekend.)

I've read at least two different descriptions of the "six realms" model now, and I don't know what they're for. What do I do with the idea of the realms, taking them as "perceptual contexts" or "characteristics of particular mind-moments"? Is it just a catalog of "places I don't want to be"? That seems pointless. Maybe recognizing these contexts could prepare us to notice, "oh, dang, I'm doing the silly thing, aren't I?" and laugh a little, and come back to the human realm. Maybe they could help to develop empathy for other people and their circumstances.

Whatever it could be, it isn't another excuse to self-flagellate:

There is no need to feel overwhelmed by how often we fall back into lower-realm perception, because there are endless opportunities to awaken.

Glad to have confirmed that.