"The point of suffering is not to just dwell in it, but to overcome it"
To create greater and everlasting happiness in our lives is about transforming our Sufferings - the States Of Mind which promotes Unhappiness.
But for us to address our Sufferings requires us to first become aware of them - to discover them.
Before we venture forth on a journey into discovering our Sufferings, we also have to first develop a clear understanding of what "Suffering" is so that we can become aware of them.
To understand the what Suffering really is requires one to approach its definition with a simple mind. This is because when we approach the definition of Suffering with a complicated mind we can easily miss the definition in its entirety.
What is Suffering?
Simply put, whenever we are experiencing unhappiness, we are "Suffering."
It's that simple.
Realize that it does not matter the degree of Unhappiness in which we are experiencing - That sensation of unhappiness can be as subtle as a dust falling on our skin to the intense feeling of a boulder crashing down on us.
This is important, because when one approaches the definition of Suffering with a complicated mind one can easily miss the simple definition of Suffering through over-analyzing the definition.
"Oh I am experiencing Unhappiness, but it's not so bad so I'm not Suffering"
"Oh I am experiencing impatience, but I'm acting patiently so I'm not Suffering"
Realize that as long as you are experiencing Unhappiness in one form / degree or another you are experiencing the State Of Suffering. It's really that simple
And from this simplistic approach to defining Suffering then we can begin to lay out the different forms of Sufferings to understand it in more depth.
Sufferings are our Negativities.
I.e. our Negative Thoughts and our Negative Emotions. When we are Suffering, we are experiencing a Negative State Within and this can include the states of Impatience, Anger, Fears, Negative judgements towards another, Lonliness just to name a few.
Whenever we are experiencing Negative Physical Sensations i.e. Uncomfortableness/Pain/Strain such as hands sweating and heart pounding caused by our Negative Reactions we are also "Suffering."
Suffering In Depth
Outer and Inner Situation
Let us clarify the definition of Suffering even more.
In life, there is a common tendency for us to define whether or not one is suffering from based on one's Outer Situations.
- I.e. We perhaps would conclude that man is suffering just because he is poor
- I.e. We perhaps could say that woman maybe suffering because she is being surrounded by rude people every day.
- I.e. Or perhaps we would believe that boy is Suffering because he has a lot of homework to do.
Obviously, it is true that our Outer Situations can make us Suffer.
But whether or not we are "Suffering" will be determined by how we are actually feeling i.e. by Our Internal State inside.
Realize that without Knowing the Internal State of someone we will never be able to truly Know whether or not someone is suffering.
i.e. Perhaps that man is happy despite being poor.
I.e. Perhaps that woman finds the rudeness of other people funny.
I.e. perhaps that boy is excited about having a lot of homework to do.
Thus when we look deeper to understand what Suffering really is.
We have to realize that Suffering does not exist outside.
Suffering comes from Within
It is a State of Mind
Whether an experience is suffering or not, it will be determined by our Perception of the experience.
Thus to truly discover our Sufferings we have to make an inward journey into discovering ourselves at the level of the Reaction/Perception.
Thus to sum it up, whether or not we are Suffering will always be defined by the quality of our perception of the experience rather than the experience itself.
It is important to Know that Sufferings comes from our Perception/Reactions because without Knowing this we can easily point our fingers outwards at whatever we are experiencing/see as the cause of our Sufferings. And often when we are in a reactive state, our reactions can drive us to look externally for the cause, i.e. pointing our fingers at the person or a situation which has made us suffer. But realize that experiences are as innocent as the sun shining in the sky. Some people like the sun. Some people don't.
Thus to make it even clearer on what suffering really is, it is not so much about what you go through in life but rather what you are experiencing internally as you pass through them.
For instance, you can have all the popularity and fame in the world at the same time suffer on the inside. As unbelievable it may sound there are many people with an incredible amount of fame and fortune that are still Suffering with Depression and Lonliness to this day.
Realize that as Suffering comes from within, no matter how much we shower ourselves with happiness from the outside to address our loneliness, depression, fears, greed, it will never directly address the Cause of our Unhappiness from within. And these days many people address Unhappiness in such a way, reaching outward for things such as using entertainment / drugs/ alcohols/ smoke/ entertainment and all sorts but what time will eventually reveal that doing such does little to actually address the Cause of Unhappiness.
To discover the Deeper Cause of our Sufferings begins with developing the Knowing of The Self at the level of the Perception/Reaction rather than just blindly focusing on the Actions. This is because we can always lie through our actions, but never through our reactions. The reactions within will always present the real raw Self at that moment.
See the Catalyst - Action/Reaction for more details
For instance you may smile and tell everyone that your day is great but on the inside you may be dying from depression.
You may "believe" that you are happy with your high paying job but your deeper emotions/thoughts may tell you otherwise.
The more we develop the Knowing of The Self at the deeper/raw level at the Reaction Level the more Sufferings we will discover.
Suffering as moments
Suffering can be defined as a moment where we have a negative experience and that moment can last as long as a life time of loneliness and depression, or as short as a passing moment of fear.
Suffering as feelings
A Suffering experience can also range from the most subtle like being negative towards the bad weather to experiencing extremely negative reactions such as jumping off an airplane.
It is only when we understand the simple definition of Suffering we can Realize that we are in fact experiencing some form of Suffering every day. In fact, as you become more and more aware of your Inner World, you will perhaps realize that in every moment you are experiencing some form of Suffering - sometimes so subtle that one can easily miss.
And with time, as we develop the awareness of our Inner Worlds, we will be able to detect our deepest worries and fears brimming in the depths within. Thus from a spiritual perspective - There is a lot of work waiting to be done!
Unawareness of our Sufferings
There are many reasons as to why we may be unaware of our sufferings. Let us look at some of the reasons.
Most of us are not aware of the Deeper Side of ourselves because most of the time we spend our days looking only outwards.
That is why there is a lack of awareness of the Inner Worlds. And because of the lack of awareness it can be difficult for one to acknowledge that they have some form of Sufferings waiting to be addressed within.
A big reason as to why most of the time we are not aware of our Sufferings is also be due to the nature of the Suffering Experience itself.
i.e. Suffering is something that is there but not quite there.
For instance, you may have a lot of Anger and Fear issues but you will never quite realize you have it until someone comes along or you encounter an experience to bring it out into light.
Likewise, just because a person locks himself in his house and spends his lifetime living inside happily and not experience any fears/anger/impatience does not mean that person has no fears/anger/impatience. It is only when that person steps outside into the world - outside his comfort zone - that person can truly find out how much Sufferings he / she carries. This is because experiences in life help to bring out to light the darkness within.
Thus Suffering is something that can be well hidden from our view when we lack the Knowing of The Self.
And because it is so well hidden, much of us do not know where it is from and how to address it. What's worse, most of us have even come to the belief that Suffering is something "Natural" to have - and as a result the suffering continues - the developing of the Knowing of it ceases - thus in the end our Sufferings are left unaddressed.
Realize that when we submit to the Idea that suffering is natural to have so we'll just have to live with it with the rest of our lives -
When we accept this illusion then we will live in this illusion.
But we don't have to.
Realize that all forms of Sufferings can be Transformed and Released, whether it is your fears, your anger, your lonliness. All the dark and unhappy states of the mind can be transformed into light and happiness.
So do not feel down as you begin to discover your sufferings. It is good, because we can only address what we are aware, and so we are suffering we are in fact discovering opportunities for us to be happier!
Path Of Creator
Sufferings In Relation To The Path Of Creator
The Path Of Creator is about Creating Happiness - Everlasting Happiness
Realize that we can never truly experience Happiness as long as we are experiencing Suffering.
I.e. how can you truly be happy if you are impatient?
How can you truly be happy if you are always judging yourself or others Negatively?
Thus to Create Everlasting Happiness we have to Transform and Release our Sufferings.
But before we can do that we first have to discover our Sufferings.
That is why we develop the Knowing Of The Self.
As covered in the 7 Chapters of The Path Of Creator we have come to Know that the seed cause of all forms of Sufferings are Negative Ideas (Ideas which promote the Rejection of The Self).
Thus to the deeper mind, all forms of Sufferings whether it is the Fear of heights, the Fear of certain situations, the Negative States of Anger, Anxieties, Impatience, Judgement are simply the state of Rejection of The Self.
So Suffering is simply the experience of Self-Rejection. However because we like to categorize things, we have categorized suffering into "separate" states of mind such as this Suffering is anger, and this Suffering is doubt, this Suffering is jealous - that Suffering is fear. But in Truth, suffering is just suffering much like an apple is an apple. And like an apple, when our Sufferings are being viewed from a different angles, then that apple can "seem" to take a "different form" much as a Negative Idea can be experienced differently when viewed from the different levels of The Self.
So Suffering can be said to be the experience of Self-Rejection. Suffering can also be said to be the experience of Negative Ideas. At the deeper level, Suffering can also be said to be the state of rejecting the Truth that there is just One Self.
Develop Experienced Knowledge
Become aware of the unhappy moments throughout the day and write down these moments. Having this list will help you discover your Sufferings, and perhaps even the theme of your sufferings.
You can ask the following questions throughout the day
"How am I reacting? feeling? thinking?
The Creator's Meditation / VipassanaLink here
As you meditate, become aware of all moments where you experience suffering
This can be done by being constantly aware of the level of Happiness that you are experiencing in every moment and as you go through the body journey what you will realize that there will be parts of the journey when you will be happier and parts of the journey when you will be less happy..
Know and Transform The Self!
Try the 22 Days Creators Meditation Course to develop Self-Knowing of who you are, of your deepest fears and desires so you can transform them and create greater happiness in life.