Gratitude … For Pain? Suffering? Are you Crazy? Good Crazy?

Thanksgiving is a time we naturally focus on Gratitude;
We share good food, company and be thankful for all that is good in our life.
Generosity and Gratitude are principal focal points.
So I seize this moment to Say “I hope you had a Wonderful Thanksgiving”
Genuinely appreciating all that makes your life rich and wondrous.
I am so thankful you are a part of my Life and community.

Within the spiritual and yoga communities these days
There is much emphasis on gratitude practices,
The practice focuses on acknowledging what is good in your life,
Writing it down, speaking it.  This is fantastic!
But I like to go deeper… to thank the pain and suffering.
Sounds crazy doesn’t it?  But it is a kind of crazy wisdom,
That I’ve learned, primarily from Buddhist teachers,
Like Thich Nhat Hanh and Pema Chodron.

During times of great challenge, pain and suffering,
It may be enough just to face the day,
To attempt to be with our feelings,
Resist the mental tendencies to blame (self or other)
So we aren’t further feeding the suffering.
Because if you are on a conscious path,
You realize at some point, that you choose
Whether or not to stay stuck in the internal drama,
That builds bitterness, resentment and deep discontent.
Challenges happen to everyone;
It is truly up to each of us to choose how to respond.

If you choose a path of conscious evolution.
You practice cultivating an open loving heart towards the suffering,
Like a crying baby, you cradle and comfort it,
Imagine the pain as separate, like this baby,
Embrace and smile whilst you rock it.
This is how you shift mind & heart,
Powerful in the moment,
This skill can also be applied to past suffering,
because unaddressed, old wounds fester when triggered.
Best to transform it all.

Ultimately all the challenges become humus for growth,
Creating the brilliant human you are in potential.
Challenges can transform naivety to wisdom,
Suffering to compassion,
Frustration to Patience.
If you choose…

Through incredible pressure and heat over time,
A lump of coal becomes a brilliant diamond
That is your potential

In my late 20’s, I had a bad car/bike accident; I now have scoliosis that
has caused chronic pain for the past 2 years; Pain can be exhausting…
But its teachings are profound… I was never very patient – always a go getter…
The pain taught me to listen, slow down, take better care of myself;
To seek out help and support; shift away from that which does not.
This has been the practical side;
The inner dimension has also evolved…
I can thank the experiences, knowing they were fertilizer
For growing compassion and patience,
the fruits of cultivating acceptance, loving it all.
Not the least bit easy, but so worth the effort.
Eventually, embracing becomes the natural response.

What hardship happening now, or from the past, has its grip on you?
Can you shift to acceptance of what is?
Can you identify any boons of past challenges you have realized?
Consider: Patience, Compassion, Joy, Wisdom, Strength, Courage … others?
Challenges are the soil from which these qualities are born.
Can your heart and mind be in appreciation?
Is it possible to be truly thankful for that which has caused suffering?
What would make your heart, mind and life brighter? More centered? More Wise?
Maybe a little more Crazy, Good Crazy! Wise Crazy!

I’d love if you shared and commented… let’s expand the Gratitude to Transform Truly & Deeply.

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