Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Suffering To Greater Consciousness

Suffering Pic (Or Standing
Under A Rock)
I'm always amazed at how people view the suffering of other people.  It is almost like they truly feel sorry for them as if it is the worst event ever happened.  In many religions and cultures, suffering is something that shows you are moving toward a greater consciousness, not enduring something that was not meant to be.

Because people have a difficult time responding to moments of suffering, initially I often am picky who I share the details with.  Their response is more of a pity than understanding or curiosity.  I never share these things with anyone to solicit pity from them.  The reason I share is to hopefully help people identify that others out there are going through experiences that match their life and that there is hope.  The other reason is I hope that my life becomes a teacher of what is possible, rather than what is in the current moment.

In many instances of the book, "Into The Light" by Dr. John Lerma, suffering is seen as a way coming closer to truth, enlightement or God as many of the patients stated.  It has a purpose of bringing the person closer to their path or others that are close to them.  Often times, the impact of suffering on these patients has profound healing moments for those around them.  In the book, the accounts of these people share about how we chose to go through these things for others to progress along their path.  Suffering is not a negative, pity moment for any of these people and in fact, it is quite the opposite.

In the Bible, you have the account of Job who has gone through just about every suffering moment there is and it was all to bring him closer to his true source (God).  People around him were giving up on him and looking at him with strange eyes, not understanding the true purpose of what was going on.  In the end, he remained on his path.

In Buddhism, there are the four noble truths which include life means suffering, the origin of suffering is attachment, the cessation of suffering is attainable, and the path to the cessation of suffering.  (source) .  In many ways, suffering could be stated as the central theme of Buddhism.  Followers are encouraged to explore what suffering is, what causes it and the various forms of suffering.  To the Buddhist followers, suffering is helping the person move towards a higher calling or enlightenment. 

If you would like to read quotes from different people about suffering, a good page that is full of them can be found at the following website.  On this page, it quotes Edgar Allen Poe "Never to suffer would never have been blessed."

I think when we go into pity for someone, we are not helping them in anyway.  The pity is more about our inability to deal with our own issues of pain and suffering.  If we have not gone in and touched the depths of our own sorrow fully and completely, than we will experience the other person's suffering through our own eyes, filters and thoughts.  We will not be able to be with them and sit with them out of love but an unbalanced desire of our own ego that prevents us from seeing fully through the illusions of life.

All of us are at different places upon our journey and we can not expect each person to understand the truths of life as we have come to understand them.  However, if we as humans fail to go in and recognize where we fall short, than we are hiding from our own consciousness and awareness.  For when you go through moments or periods of suffering, you are being given the opportunity to grow in consciousness and awarenss.  You are being given the option of evolving, rather than just existing.

I believe that suffering is a higher calling and it is should be viewed in the way that the Buddhist believe - where - what is the reason, what is the cause and how do I learn to embrace it.  Having pity on someone because of suffering may make you feel better and help you to cope with it, but it will do very little to help the person suffering or advance the cause and learning behind the experience.

Related Blog Posts
1)  For Those Difficult Moments (Posted Aug 30, 2008)
2)  Freedom From Pain (Posted Sep 10, 2010)

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  1. I totally agree with you, our suffering is for greater reasons than to get pity from anyone. I think sometimes people are warm hearted for this reason it is hard for most kind hearted people to hear of someone else's suffering. when I share a time where I suffered it is usually to give hope and faith to others that this too shall pass..and it will be the way your christmas music is lovely...will get some from itunes in the next couple of are lovely.

  2. I have found too that the deeper I go into my own pain and release it, the more I can be there with others - like a greater capacity to be there. Dr. Canali has done so much in teaching me about this in my own life and he models it in his own life as well.

    Thank you for the comments about the Christmas music!






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