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Sunday, November 27, 2016

Rumi: The Cure for the Pain is in the Pain

Like it or not, physical, emotional and spiritual pain IS the ultimate teacher.

The Cure for the Pain is in the Pain~Rumi

I hate pain. I'm a wimp. I'll do everything to avoid it until I'm forced to realize pushing into and through the pain IS the cure. Ignorance isn't bliss when it comes to pain. Ignoring the problem only prolongs and often worsens the pain. But somehow that never stops me from trying to ignore it for as long as possible.

Like it or not--and I don't--physical, emotional and spiritual pain IS the ultimate teacher. 

If we fail to pay attention, and take positive action in a healthier direction~our wise bodies take out the ruler to slap us. There's nothing like a bit of discomfort to make us listen up--but sometimes it takes more than a few whacks to get our attention--especially for us 'enlightened souls'.

Recently I've been dealing with painful and weakened hamstrings (muscles on back of thigh). True to my nature (read the 'enlightened person's' path to denial) I've been trying to just relax and let my body figure it out as I continue in my 'normal' activities, including daily walks and trips to the gym

Wouldn't you know it, by unconsciously avoiding what hurts, suddenly I discovered I stopped going to the gym, stretching, and walking up hills. So much for continuing my normal activities. And guess what? The pain intensified.

These pains you feel are messengers. 
Listen to them.

The Wimpy Pain-Adverse Enlightened Soul's Path 

Yep, I'm a wimpy pain-adverse enlightened soul who often takes a bit longer to take care of the painful issues due to my clever use of 'higher order' avoidance techniques. Time and again my body treats me like a mere commoner and slaps me back to attention until I give in to following through on jumping through life's hoops just like everyone else.

Like you, I indeed have everything I need inside of myself to handle whatever life throws my way--including the painful parts of it. The tricky part is getting myself to access that wisdom when I need it most. That's when this enlightened soul finds it helpful to apply Jack Kornfield's wisdom: 'imagine everyone else is enlightened except for you.'

By imagining everyone else is enlightened except for me I can reach back through the ages to tap the wisdom of those who've come before me, and also seek the sage advice from my peers today. Through this truly enlightening activity I can better open my mind to the wisdom that resides within me and act on it. My biggest strength is recognizing the wisdom of others--so why not use it?

Today as I let go of my greatly coveted inner title of 'enlightened one' my mind wandered to the advice I received from my sister-in-law, Lee, three months ago when I complained about my weak hamstrings: 'Have you tried stretching your muscles by resting your leg flat on the table with your knee bent?' '

'No, enlighten me.'

The minute she demonstrated the exercise I had my AHA! moment and began applying the helpful stretch. But somewhere along the way I stopped persisting--perhaps because I thought the issue was resolved or because the stretch was always initially uncomfortable as my shortened muscles relaxed (I told you I was a wimp).

You have to break your heart to open it.
You have to push into the pain to cure the pain.
You have to quit being sad for one moment to hear the blessings.

I Know You're Tired, But Come this is the Way~Rumi

The hardest thing for us wimpy enlightened souls to do is to push into the pain--and keep it up. We want our AHA! moment without the hard work of persisting through the life lesson. We want to look composed, relaxed, and be unaffected by life's little pains.

Years ago as I was dealing with an emotionally painful experience, I got my AHA! moment as I saw the pattern that existed in my life. I asked my good pal, Karen King, who I refer to as my personal guru, 'Now that I see the pattern, how do I make it stop?'

'You don't,' she replied. 'Now you sit in it.'

It's tiring dealing with persistent pain--whether physical, emotional or spiritual. Yet it is only through persisting...first through sitting in our awareness of 'what is' then taking action in the here and now...and also in the future that we get through the pain.

'I know you're tired, but come this is the way.'

Woman cleverly disguised as
an enlightened soul 

What Pain are You in?

💙  What Physical, Emotional or Spiritual Pain have you been dealing with lately?

💙  If everyone else was enlightened except for you, what words of wisdom would you pick up to help you push into the pain?

💙  If you were to persist in dealing with the pain, what steps would you take? Take one now.

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For more than 35 years, Susan Meyerott has been helping people lighten up and step over invisible barriers to change one step at a time. She speaks to your heart, puts you at ease, and makes changing easier than ever before.

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john miller said...

While I think there is a lot of truth here I also believe there is some pain, usually physical that serves no beneficial purpose. To feel that unless a person is willing to endure extreme pain is the same as telling someone not to take a pain relieving medication because they will reduce their potential for growth because if you take this idea to extremes that is exactly what is being proposed. I have too much compassion for that even if my opinion is a minority one.

Susan J Meyerott, M.S. said...

Hi John! This is NOT saying you should endure extreme is saying you need to pay attention to it and DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT. Your opinion is NOT a minority one. We need to have compassion for ourselves and for others. When it comes to physical pain we need to get ahead of it as much as possible so we can better contain it. In the case of pain relieving meds it is very important to get ahead of chronic pain.

Pushing into the pain refers to actively dealing with it and finding a way through...not putting up with it.

I so appreciate your taking the time to voice your thoughts here. Good to hear from you. Hugs.