November 7

The pain and suffering that comes
to us has a purpose in our lives--
it is trying to teach us something.
We should look for its lesson.

Peace Pilgrim


Today's Meditation:

I usually don't want this to be true.  Quite simply, it means that many of our most important lessons come through pain and suffering, so if we're people who want to learn important lessons, we must pretty much expect pain and suffering.  On the surface, this seems to be a fatalistic perspective.  In reality, though, we all have to face such things in our lives, and when they do come, it's good to know that they do bring us something more than just the pain on the surface.

Mildred (aka the Peace Pilgrim), isn't telling us that we should invite pain and suffering into our lives, and she isn't telling us that we should celebrate when it does enter into our reality.  What she is telling us is that we should pay attention to it when it's here, for it can bring more to us than itself.  Some of the most devastating breakups have led many people to realize just how self-sufficient they can be; some terrible medical diagnoses have led people to re-examine their lives and bring a new richness and fullness to their reality.

The question we must ask ourselves is how we react to pain.  Do we try to deny it and try to thrust it out of our lives, or do we accept it and try to find out what messages it may be bringing to us?  Are our minds closed to the possibility of learning from suffering, or do we open our minds to possibilities even as the pain makes itself known?

Pain and suffering are something that we spend a lot of time and energy avoiding, and rightly so.  But when they do force their ways into our lives, we must do our best to figure out what they're bringing us other than themselves--they're a part of something bigger and better, if only we can see it.

Questions to consider:

Why do so few of us recognize the positive side of situations that are painful?

What kinds of lessons can be given to us through things such as pain and suffering?

What kinds of important things have you learned from painful situations?

For further thought:

People have a need to feel their pain.  Very often
pain is the beginning of a great deal of awareness.
As an energy center it awakens consciousness.

Arnold Mindell

More on pain.


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