09. Suffering Is Resistance To Pain

Men are reputed to be stoical individuals who grit their teeth and endure pain. It is regarded as a badge of honour to keep going with life through suffering, showing that you are in control.

In wartime, particularly, soldiers often pride themselves on their strength to keep going through any type of pain.

What if the physical pain you suffer is an outward indication of inward emotional suffering. Your body/mind system is highly developed and will take whatever means it can to alert you to problems that are being ignored or stuffed down. Pain can be a deliberate communication to you by your ‘Emotional System’ that something needs to be dealt with. If you ignore the communication issues can get worse.

Understanding this, hearing the communication and releasing the emotional suffering can be a powerful step towards releasing and clearing pain.

“Pain is a relatively objective, physical phenomenon; suffering is our psychological resistance to what happens. Events may create physical pain, but they do not in themselves create suffering. Resistance creates suffering.” —Dan Millman

Two years ago I suffered an extremely debilitating bout of rheumatoid arthritis after contracting a viral infection in India. This continued for months and was very difficult to deal with.

I found there was no medical solution to the problem, only relief by drugs from the pain. Investigating deeper I realised, through discussions with various therapists, that I was able to connect what was happening to a particularly difficult emotional period after the break-up of my marriage. I came to realise that I was holding on to a lot of emotional pain, which was being converted into extreme physical pain.

Over a period of many months I learned to listen to what the pain was communicating to me and let go of many issues that I was holding inside me. As I let go and acknowledged what was happening, the pain slowly disappeared. I learned to listen to my body/mind system and understand that whatever it did was in my best interests.

  • If you are in pain now sit silently and focus into the source of that pain. Allow it to communicate with you. What is it trying to get you to understand? If you have no pain, think back to when you had serious pain and go through the same process.
  • When you understand what it is there for, accept and acknowledge the communication, and let the pain go.
  • Fill the void left with a positive emotional state that can spread to fill your body and fulfill the communication you have received.
  • Suspend any disbelief you have on this issue and feel what your body is saying to you. You will be amazed by the results.

Other Posts in the series 'Dealing With Chaos'

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