Why Suffering is a Necessary Accessory to JOY

In our continued expedition towards TRUTH, we have distinguished it separate from belief, and coined it dependent upon ones’ own direct experience.  Inquiry has proven an effective process in understanding whether or not you have been programmed to believe a thought, versus ACTUALLY having experienced a TRUTH.  This inquiry has gifted us the opportunity to acknowledge a somewhat ghoulish cast of habitual reactions, influenced beliefs, and previously unconscious tendencies. Yoga would categorize this ghoulish cast as: DUKHA, which literally translates as “bad space” or the suffering within ourselves.

Maybe the first thing to recognize is that we ARE GOING TO SUFFER. Shit is going to hit the fan. Relationships are going to end, accidents are going to happen, jobs are going to be lost, and promises…broken. People are going to die, pets are going to die, and yes, even YOU are going to die. It’s a given. So by trying to avoid suffering, aren’t we really just creating MORE unnecessary suffering? The avoidance gives birth to the dis ease, which gives way to symptoms that include but are not limited to: binge drinking, drugging, eating, not eating, shopping, watching, gambling, sexing, etc. So now you could very likely fill an extra large UHAUL with this self inflicted suffering known as avoidance …BEFORE there was just the original suffering, let’s say, dad’s death, but NOW, dad is STILL dead AND you are hooked on porn and oxy’s AND you drained your bank account AND your spouse left you because….. you are hooked on oxy’s and porn AND drained the bank account…..oh and by the way, she’s filing for full custody as well….forget the UHAUL, time to rent some storage units!!

So what if instead of suffering equaling the multiplication of suffering, suffering could equal the multiplication of JOY? And when I say JOY, I don’t mean happiness. I mean JOY, J O Y: the JOURNEY OF YOU, which encompasses ALL the feels because the feeling itself means that you are ALIVE and in your ALIVENESS there IS: sad and happy, lonely and connected, understanding and confusion, etc. The multiplication of dukha or suffering is when we blindly chase just ONE of these many feels.

So maybe it is THROUGH the TRUTH of the suffering itself that we, not only minimize future suffering, but MAXIMIZE our capacity to feel JOY within us and to see the JOY that is all around us. If we distract ourselves from seeing death, than won’t we be just as distracted in seeing life? If we numb ourselves from feeling lonely, than won’t we be just as numb to feeling intimacy, if we look only in one direction then won’t we miss the multitude of landscapes all around us? 

It seems to me that JOY and TRUTH exist parallel to one another, in the, unpredictable, unadulterated, unfiltered, purity of the moment known as the NOW. The second that moment becomes labeled as ‘good’ or ‘bad’, as ‘likable’ or ‘dislikable’ is the VERY same second that JOY and TRUTH evaporate, poof….just like the morning dew..…

So maybe we redefine suffering as a NECESSARY, an unavoidable accessory to JOY…because the ‘JOURNEY OF YOU’ requires your FULL participation and NOT just your minds’ narration! It requires you to bathe in the rain AND soak in the sun, see the magic in rainbows AND feel the electricity in the lighting bolts. The JOY is ALL of IT and IT exists through the only place that both life and truth are present…..upon the infinite expanse of the NOW.

What if we dared to FEEL it all?!?

Blessed BE!

-Andrea Dawn

Andrea Behler