Pain is a daily occurrence in my life. I have come to appreciate its presence even on my worst of days. Even when it is so bad that I am left with only a single question: Why?
Pain has a way of humbling even the most confident of us. It reminds us of our fallibility's, of our impermanence. It is the most basic manifestation of suffering. We suffer because we are in pain. But the best part of pain is that it is not unique, but rather that it is ubiquitous.
You have been in pain, your neighbor or co-worker has been in pain. That random stranger on the bus has been in pain. We have all been in pain. And while we could get into the nitty gritty and talk about how our pain might be different, the fact is that it has led to our suffering. We have all suffered and we all know what it means to suffer.
It is our understanding of suffering that enables us to exercise our empathy, our compassion and love. It is the reason we can forgive and understand a point of view so seemingly different from our own.
Our suffering provides an opportunity to learn and understand, to connect and grow. But first we must meet it half way and understand that we never suffer alone. That others have walked along similar paths and faced similar feats. If we can understand this basic principle, that no one truly suffers alone, then our collective power will be greater then our worst fears and stronger then we could ever imagine.
In our pain lives our suffering, and should we choose to accept the challenge, in our suffering our empathy can grow. With empathy we foster connection and when we are connected we are never alone. It is from this cycle of suffering and empathy that I derive hope. Hope that empathy leaves little room for anger and hate to take hold. For if we are connected we cannot hate one another but can instead understand what we already intuitively know. That the answer to our challenges is compassion, and with compassion we will ultimately grow.
Hi, I'm Liz. I like to write about life and the wisdom I cull from it. I use words and images to inspire empathy and connection with each other and the world.