“Pain is a relatively objective, physical phenomenon; suffering is our psychological resistance to what happens. Events may create physical pain, but they do not in themselves create suffering. Resistance creates suffering. Stress happens when your mind resists what is… The only problem in your life is your mind’s resistance to life as it unfolds. ”
― Dan Millman
When I first heard the concept that suffering is optional and that it shows resistance to life as it is, I immediately began to protest.
“Sure try telling that to people who are homeless and have nothing. Tell that to someone who is out of work and doesn’t know how to feed their families!”
Then I met people who’s lives seemed so much harder than my own and yet they had a joy that I don’t think I could match on my best days. I met people with death sentences from cancer hanging over their head who wanted nothing more than to tell jokes and misbehave. I learned that it was possible to hurt but not suffer.
It was then that I understood what Bruce Lee meant when he said “Be Like Water.”
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Cloud Watchers VI by G A Rosenberg