Is Suffering Necessary?

A. Yes it is. But it need not be permanent.

I’m not the first one to work this out, but I will be the first one to describe it in these exact words, and well, the world has always needed teachers to pass down knowledge, so here we are. It is the way of things in the world of mammals. We are born, we learn, and then we teach. We traverse our own experience of life as best we can, and then once we have learnt enough, we pass that wisdom on.

Suffering is one of my favourite subjects to speak on these days, and thus that probably makes me a rare breed. One might assume that a proclivity towards what is perceived as a darker element of life would mean I’m also shrouded in darkness, but au contraire my friends. Suffering was a constant in my life for a long, long time, and I swam away it as hard as I could, until I ran out of energy and sank.

You see, what I am going to try to teach you here in this short blog post, is that suffering is in fact one of the most wonderful delights that the human experience has to offer. Sinking was the best thing that happened to me. Hitting rock bottom is what many call it. Suffering, when framed correctly is the most humbling, illuminating, and ultimately freeing teacher. A teacher that can, if framed correctly, bring us to a deeper place of gratitude, contentment and ultimately, joy. Suffering can create a beautiful bridge to understanding what it is we are truly experiencing whilst we are down here, in these bodies.

We are clinging to the good in our lives, whilst being desperately fearful of losing it. That fear of losing what we love ensures we can’t truly enjoy what we love, and will often eventually result in us losing it.

Lost you with that? Hang tight, try to think of it this way. We humans, for the most part, seek pleasure, and seek to avoid pain and suffering. We seek thrills, and spills, and laughs, and love, and sugar and spice and all things nice. We grasp at what feels good, and then we run like mad, like startled deer from what feels ‘bad’. Now, I understand why we do this, it’s because what feels good, FEELS GOOOOD. It just seems obvious that we should run towards what feels good, but here’s the rub: life is a blend, a steady mix of yin and yang. As night follows day; darkness, pain, suffering and things that feel bad are an inevitable part of life too. By running away from what feels bad, and relentlessly towards what feels good, we ensure one thing… Fear will control us. By running from the discomfort we cling to the pleasurable like our boat has capsized and we are holding on to a buoyancy aid for dear life. We are clinging to the good in our lives, whilst being desperately fearful of losing it. I’ve highlighted that sentence in bold because I think it’s the most important sentence in this entire piece. That fear of losing what we love ensures we can’t truly enjoy what we love, and will often eventually result in us losing it (should probably bold that one too). This is the tragedy of the human experience. By turning a blind eye to the inevitable darkness of our world we in fact lose our ability to embrace the copious amounts of heavenly joy that is also on offer. Bliss, or ‘Samadhi’ as the yogis call it, is available to all, but only to those who are willing to dance with the Devil as well as sing with the angels.

So that’s it. It’s that simple. Accept that life has darkness, and acquaint yourself with that darkness so closely that it no longer feels so scary. Find the courage to befriend the stuff that scares you. Suffering comes along as a gift to make us uncomfortable, to prevent us from being able to avoid the darkness within us any longer. Unfortunate events, tragedies, and heartbreak will be presented to us, on a individual and collective level (2020 anyone) to make us so uncomfortable and unhappy that we have no option but to cease our clinging to our hedonistic pleasures and embrace the pain. And when we do, often the pain ceases and we start to blink our eyes wide open to the ultimate truth.

How do you do it? Well just sit it with it all, sit with the entirety of your experience, allow yourself to feel it all. Feel the pain, the hurt, the betrayal, the guilt, the grief, the anger and the sadness. Meditation is key to this, we need to go quiet, and go inwards on our own experience.

Of course, easier said than done. It really helps to have someone guide you into your subconscious with a deep trance state and then sit with you as you face the trauma and supressed emotions, and that’s exactly what I do. If you would like to work with me because you’re suffering or stuck in a rut and can’t see a way out, then head over to my business page at for details on what I do and how to contact me.

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