Tuesday, September 03, 2013

I've been reading a lot about suffering lately.  It's not that I sought them out, but rather that they sort of came to me unbidden.  This makes me take notice, moreso than I normally would.

CS Lewis:

Unfortunately, I'm having trouble finding it and am out of time, but the gist was that we fear a thing, and we shrink from what we fear. What, the, if that thing we fear turns out to be good?

Paramahansa Yogananda in Autobiography of a Yogi, chapter: Law of Miracles ...

A dazzling play of light filled the whole horizon. A soft rumbling vibration formed itself into words:
"What has life or death to do with Light? In the image of My Light I have made you. The relativities of life and death belong to the cosmic dream. Behold your dreamless being! Awake, my child, awake!"
and later in the same chapter, after a horrifying vision of the European battlefields of WW1:
 My heart was still not comforted. The divine voice went on: "Creation is light and shadow both, else no picture is possible. The good and evil of maya must ever alternate in supremacy. If joy were ceaseless here in this world, would man ever seek another? Without suffering he scarcely cares to recall that he has forsaken his eternal home. Pain is a prod to remembrance. The way of escape is through wisdom! The tragedy of death is unreal; those who shudder at it are like an ignorant actor who dies of fright on the stage when nothing more is fired at him than a blank cartridge. My sons are the children of light; they will not sleep forever in delusion."

A guy on a facebook group I'm on (Translated from Greek, so forgive some of the imperfections. I decided to leave them):

There will never flew ...
The cocoon of the Butterfly (instructive history) Someone, sometime, he found the cocoon of a butterfly.
One day, there was a small opening in the cocoon. The man sat and observed the butterfly for several hours as she was struggling to pass her body through the small hole. Sometime it seemed anympori to proceed.
So the man decided to help the butterfly. With a pair of scissors, cut the remaining piece of the cocoon. The butterfly made easily, but had a swollen body and wings are withered. The man continued to observe the butterfly because he expected that the wings will be raised and we were stretching to prop up her body, which will slowly xeprizotan.
Something, however, was not.
In contrast, the butterfly spent the rest of her life by dragging her swollen body and having withered wings. Never been able to fly.
This man, with kindness and haste, did not understand was that the fight to get the butterfly from the opening, it was the way in which God carried the fluid from her body toward the wings so that they are ready to fly once freed from the cocoon.
Sometimes, the difficulty is exactly what we need in our lives. If God allowed us to cross the life without obstacles, will not have the power to bestow.

There will never flew ...

It has been postulated that suffereing and fear and loss are all animal emotions; that the soul perceives live as a gleeful adventure.  I don't know. I do think that pain makes us care. It drives us to our knees to seek a closer relationship with a creator that we'll never quite know.  It prods us to remember those we love, both here and gone.

I suppose we should be thankful, but that knowledge is little consolation when we are in the midst of that pain. There is, I think, nothing to do but to greive with those who greive, give ourselves that time and space to be a human and not a machine at a job or even in our family, and be OK with the grieving, knowing that it is as unavoidable as sun-rise, and that like the sun-set, it's will, eventually, abate.
When we all experience pain, a little courage helps
more (Lewis observes) than much knowledge, a little
human sympathy more than much courage, and the
least tincture of the love of God more than all.
- CS Lewis, The Problem of Pain

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