On Wednesday 1/27/16 we had a large circle and discussed the nature of our suffering following a short meditation. Here are a few things I picked up, as always, please comment or create an additional post if I missed anything!
What is suffering?
'Witnessing those in power not making compassionate choices, and observing their greed.' -Jeremiah
'Suffering takes shape in many ways, for me it is personal, when people in my life do something bad, however it is a comforting thought to know that life is suffering. Then it is inevitable, and it has the ability to shape you.' -Mariel
'Suffering presents opportunity' -Topher It is growth, it is understanding.
'it gives context to happiness. Suffering is loneliness' -Matt
'disappointment in not being happy all the time, but knowing that life is suffering, I am okay with that.' -Amy
suffering allows strength, growth. It is inevitable.
'Our great expectations, like getting an awesome job and having that perfect significant other leads us to suffer.' -Evihn
What are our reactions to suffering?
'We have a choice to suffer, for example, suffering is sitting in traffic. Why am I in traffic? Oh, I am going to work, because I'm going to school, because I want to write music. Maybe this traffic isn't so bad anymore.' -Anon
'We must discard the notion that suffering is an obstacle' -Jeremiah
'It is interesting to receive suffering, and to transform it by responding with compassion.' -Joseph
'If we are aware that most people are 'suffering', although we are unaware of the cause of their suffering, we can begin to respond compassionately.' -Montana
'How do we treat others when we are unhappy? When we are suffering?
'What doesn't kill you makes you stronger. Perhaps a great western phrase, but this isn't always true. You could get into a car accident, become permanently unable to move your body, you aren't physically stronger. But, you can choose to be okay with it.' -Evihn
'Suffering holds as much weight as you let it.' -Mariel
[meditation] 'allows presence, to understand that things are great now in this moment, and to discard the expectation of great progression.' -Evihn
Have a good Friday! Don't be afraid to explore the nature of your suffering. If you are suffering, try following your breath for 3 counts. Breathe in, breathe out, breathe in, breathe out, breathe in, breathe out. It will not change the situation at hand, but it could help transform your reaction to a situation.