Freedom from suffering

sea-ocean-water-sky-horizonIs one who is enlightened freed from all suffering?

What first needs to be looked at is what is meant when the word “suffering” is used.  In everyday language words like pain and suffering are frequently used together to the point where they can almost be used interchangeably.  So, an understanding of what we mean by suffering is is needed.  What needs to be understood is that what is typically referred to as suffering is not present in the world of externals, but only arises from within the depths of the mind.  Essentially, there is no such thing as suffering, meaning that there is no suffering to be found in the actual world outside of ourselves.  Suffering is always self created.  Whereas pain is not merely self created, although there can be times when the experience of physical pain can manifest solely via mental will power.

As long as you have a physical body you will experience some bodily pain, yet it is not the pain that bothers us, it is what happens when the thinking mind that is still identified with a false sense of itself, interacts with pain that suffering arises.

One can seemingly be experiencing what one would call a “bad day” when all of a sudden one gets a tiny cut.  The pain from this cut is relatively insignificant yet what the thinking mind will do is build up a story around this pain all centered around a false notion of “I.”  When the thinking mind that is falsely identified with a sense of “I” within the being beings to interact with physical pain, something as insignificant as a paper cut can become a traumatic experience.  This experience was not generated from the experience of getting cut, but was generated when the mind allowed itself to connect a false sense of “I” with the physical sensation of getting cut.

When one goes to gym, there can be an immense amount of physical pain and soreness the following day, yet this pain does not cause us suffering.  Even though the physical pain may be worse than a simple paper cut.  We do not feel suffering from going to gym because the mind didn’t engage the physical sensations, therefore the pain simply ran its course.

Is one who is enlightened freed from all suffering?

It depends on them.  What needs to be remembered is that suffering is a choice, not a curse.  Although for a mind that is still deeply entangled within false identification with the “ego-mind construct” it may be hard to believe, but in actuality we suffer because we choose to.  For many, the fault lies not with them.  They merely do not yet know that there is another avenue available to them.

Something happens externally; how we choose to react to it is now entirely up to us. Albeit, there will come times when what happens externally is not pleasant, but what needs to be understood is that how we react will never effect the fact that something already occurred.

So, the choice is always up to us.  One should not wait to have what some may call an “enlightening” experience to free oneself from what we are calling suffering.  One can do this right here, right now.  It all comes down to one thing;

will you choose to?

~Agnisattva

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