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Tuesday, June 22, 2010

How to Deal with Suffering in Life, Part 1

Dear Aunt Laya,
…reading your words brought much needed comfort to my heart and soul.  Thank You. I have one question:  Why does a person have to suffer so much in this life?…I have had to deal with so much suffering, much.  Why?  I stay happy.  I live in joy.  I give unconditionally to others.  I do my very best each and every day.  Yet awful things still happen.  Hoping you can send some much needed light into this question for me.

Many blessings for all you are doing to help others,


Dearest Reader,

Thank you so much for writing me, it means the world to me to know that the words from my heart have touched you in a way that brings you comfort.

The question you ask, “Why does a person have to suffer so much in this life?” has been asked for millennium. Before I even begin to share my simple understanding, know that there is no one answer, and I could never answer this deep question fully. My hope is that maybe some piece of my answer will bring some portion of peace and hope to help us get through the harder trials in life.

So, to touch into this most difficult question begins the simplest answer, the least satisfying of all (that no man or woman will ever fully grasp): There is a bigger picture and we cannot know from our limited human perspective what that is!

Each of us is a soul, created for a Divine mission and purpose. We do not have access to the “whole picture” of the soul, its journey, or why she is here in this earthly experience. From a broader, Heavenly perspective, there is purpose and meaning to each and every breath we take. We think we can understand some of it, but then, we have the hardest of times, loss, change, or upheaval and it can feel like life is crashing in on us.

An oyster is a small shellfish. One grain of sand enters the shell. We know how annoying a small pebble that slipped into our shoe can feel; now imagine that this delicate fish is subjected to sharp pain against its small, tender flesh. The nature of an oyster is such that when it feels that rough grain of sand, it secretes a substance to coat the offending source of pain. It coats and coats and coats until the surface is smooth: a pearl is created. From pain and hurt, is created a beautiful gem: the pearl.

This life, though full of pleasures and delights to be sure, is also full of pains and disappointments. We live in illusion of what we think life “should” be, then we are disillusioned and disappointed as we see that life does not fit our perspective.

Yet, everything, 
everything that we experience has meaning and purpose. Every life experience holds rich gifts for us to cash in on if we stay awake and aware, or conscious, to what we are experiencing. Each trial or pain comes with a gift of its own—an insight, deeper compassion or understanding or wisdom, and it is our job to find the pearl and treasure it.

It is at this point that our personal power comes in. We may not be able to control what happens around us, and most likely we cannot for much that goes on in and around our lives. We may, however, control the
 way in which we see things and the actions and reactions we choose as a response.

This is what builds us, and this is how we build ourselves.

Over the coming weeks, (and in this ezine and blog) I’ll be writing more about this. In the meantime, keep shining!

Aunt Laya
With gratitude to kconnors and for the beautiful photo

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