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Re: Suffering

Posted by deirdrehbrt on February 27, 2006, at 21:58:59

In reply to Re: Suffering, posted by rayww on February 27, 2006, at 20:50:07

You do raise some good points. Out of suffering does come compassion. That is one of the keys, as I understand it, to shamanic practice. It involves the concept of the wounded healer.
It is a foundational principle of Alcoholics Anonymous. Through the learning and spiritual enlightenment of recovered alcoholics comes the ability to carry the message of how they recovered to other alcoholics.
I cannot expect to learn how to stop drinking from one who has never had that addiction. That is why therapists and ministers propose to alcoholics who truly wish to stop drinking, that they go to A.A. The recovered A.A. is then charged with the same duty, to tell the alcoholic in need that recovery is possible. It is a more or less sacred chain.
I'm not sure that I agree that suffering comes from deity. Social standards (though I prefer a slightly different term, with differing connotations) do play a part. In my faith, it is more attributed to ignorance and closed hearts. This brings part of the cause more toward the individual who must ultimately take responsibility.
Another part of suffering comes from living in a world where many competing organisms are trying to survive. Life involves death. To eat, I must be responsible for killing, whether I do it myself, or have someone else do it. This causes suffering to animals we are charged to keep.
At other times, one man's wealth comes at the cost of another's. The incredible demand that the United States puts on the world's resources is responsible for at least some suffering in a number of countries. Most notable is our desire for low cost clothing, and the horrible conditions in which some people must work.
Indeed there is much suffering in this world, and I think that man himself is the cause of much, if not most of it.
On the part of the person who has suffered, it can become a blessing once one is past it. To offer though, someone who is suffering, that it is truly a blessing migh not be met with much acceptance at the time. It is only after one has come through suffering that the blessing can be recognized as such.
Nice discussion. Thanks for your comments.




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