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Thursday, August 23, 2018

Dealing With Emotional Pain


Dealing With Emotional Pain

Human life is never pain or sorrow free—that is life, whether you like it or not.

Human pain is intensified by the human mind, which seeks to deny and to avoid it. To alleviate the pain, focus the mind on the present moment. Accept it, and cope with it, instead of fighting against it.

Suffering, pain, and misery are necessary for the co-existence of contentment, pleasure, and happiness, just as sickness and health are at the far ends of that same phenomenological spectrum. According to TAO wisdom (the ancient wisdom from China), these extremes in human experience are not only temporary but also unnatural; they are just the cycles of nature in which the pendulum swings back and forth from one end to the other. Therefore, it is human folly to attempt to avoid or to resist experiencing these swings; by doing so, man throws himself out of balance with nature, and thus not only intensifies but also unduly prolongs his suffering. According to TAO, acceptance holds the key:

“Accept misfortune as the human condition. . .
What do you mean by
‘Accept misfortune as the human condition’?
Misfortune comes from having a body.
Without a body, how could there be misfortune?”
(Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 13)

The TAO solution to human pain and suffering is non-judgment through focusing on the present moment.

Emotional pain often leaves behind a residue of pain that continues to live on in you. Combined with the accumulated pain in the past, the new emotional pain begins to merge with that in the past, giving it a newer dimension with greater intensity.

To illustrate, we often find ourselves burst into uncontrollable anger when triggered by an unpleasant incident, and begin lashing at the aggressor with outbursts of past grudges and grievances that have nothing to do with the present incident. Our emotional pain can only feed on past pain, and thus creating more pain—a vicious circle of misery and suffering.

Staying in the present moment may enable you to confront uour subconscious identification with the past thoughts deeply embedded in your subconscious mind. Maybe you are not the person you think you are, and you are simply afraid to face the pain that lives in you. As long as the fear is not overcome, you will continue to think you are the person you think you are, and you will continue to experience the past pain for the rest of your life.

Remember, emotional pain is caused by emotional thoughts, which generate negative energy that causes body-and-mind pain.

For example, through the subconscious mind, angry thoughts on what someone did to you become “you” because you identify them with you. The emotional pain then becomes “you” because where there is anger there is also pain.

The wisdom of TAO is to use the present moment to dis-identify yourself from your mind; by shattering the deceptive mind identification, you begin to see the light and the ultimate truth. It is like the Biblical wisdom expressed by Apostle Paul when he said: “Everything is being shown up by being exposed to the light, and whatever is exposed to the light itself becomes light.” (Ephesians 5:13)

Stephen Lau
Copyright©2018 by Stephen Lau

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