“People have a need to feel their pain. Very often pain is the beginning of a great deal of awareness. As an energy center it awakens consciousness.” ~ Arnold Mindell, Dreambody: The Body’s Role in Revealing the Self …
Have you ever found yourself sore from over-exerting yourself physically doing something you do not often do, or perhaps pulled or strained a muscle that you never even knew existed? That pain is our body’s way of telling us what is going on inside of it–it is an intricate and effective communication tool, a way for our bodies to elicit an awareness of what is going on inside of us, physically, emotionally, and spiritually.
Our pain has a lot to tell us; if we but listen to it, it can let us know things that are not as strong as the could be, things that still require our time, attention, and efforts. Even our emotional pain can help us to become more aware of our hearts, and our spiritual pain our souls. The pain from past relationships can help me to realize the walls I have built up to keep others out or the “excess baggage” I am carrying around with me and allowing to weigh down my heart and mind. I once read a story of a woman who recovered from back problems that she had dealt with for 20 years, only to have them return after the passing of her mother. This was one of the pieces of information that helped me to begin searching for a better understanding of the communication process between my own body and mind.
Unfortunately, many individuals nowadays simply see pain as a sign to take painkillers–they do not seek to find the root causes of the pain or gather a deeper awareness of what they body is expressing. But this only masks the pain, prolonging its adverse effects and maintaining a distance between our mind, heart, body, and soul.
Sure pain can be unpleasant, but it is rarely unbearable. And if it is unbearable, we should fix it; but if it is not, then we should seek to listen to it and increase our awareness of what it is trying to convey. As the saying goes, “No pain… no gain.”
Take a moment to listen silently to any pain you may be experiencing in your life.
Questions to consider:
Why do we seem to want to banish pain as soon as we feel its first touch? What parts of pain are we afraid of?
How might we learn to pay attention to our pain?
What kinds of lessons have you learned from pain in the past? Have they been valuable lessons?
For further thought:
“Our culture teaches us how to numb and distract ourselves but not how to listen to our pain and learn from our difficulties. Think what we learn about pain from television. We learn that pain is to be avoided at all costs and that there are a variety of pain relievers for every conceivable pain. I would like to see a commercial that says, “Your pain is a great teacher. Learn from it and be healed.” ~ Bernie S. Siegel, M.D.