email@example.com (Judi Rhodes)
Subject: Re: Stillness...Jim
Date: Tue, 03 Sep 1996 10:16:11 +0000
Judi Rhodes wrote (in part):
Everything you posted below is pretty much true, but the deal is, you just can't say those words and have them become true. It is either true of you in the moment or it is not. Just by saying those words over and over again, like Dorothy clicking her ruby slippers together is not going to take you home. How it becomes true of you is by suffering, by seeing that you are suffering. By seeing how it is your basic mood that you carry around with you. Go read my post I just wrote to Sig....
So Jim, start giving us some real examples of how you are noticing that you are suffering in your life, and more importantly ...how it makes you feel. Fess up.. you are among friends. Take advantage!
Wow! I've been away too long, obviously.
In my absence the work of conscious suffering got changed into confessing how you are suffering to others; and confessing how it makes you feel as well!
And I never really wanted to be a member of the one-and-only Catholic Church!
I hope this isn't a general misconception: that conscious suffering refers to complaining constantly about how much I'm suffering.
Consider: just about everyone complains just about all the time (hyperbole for effect only). So does this mean that everyone is consciously suffering? Or could it be possible that, whatever conscious suffering is, it's something a little bit different and rarer than the constant complaining and pursuit of distractions-with-pleasure that consume so much human time and energy?
Perhaps there is even a point where conscious suffering is no longer a requirement, nor even desirable? How do we know what is ahead of us until we get there? Maybe Jim has already found out: who are we to say unless we've already been that way down the road ourselves?
During the early years of this work there was a lot of suffering in this particular life, admittedly. It's a shame, but it seems to work out that few will actually do the intense and almost daunting amount of work required to rise above their own conditioning unless they see that it is the conditioning that is causing all this suffering.
One time only this one gritched about the ``pain'' to the fellow who played the role of guide for this one. The response: ``So what?''
Like almost everyone else on this amusing little mud-ball, it was found very easy to make ``my'' suffering very, very important: and think that was somehow the point of the ``work.'' With any luck/grace, one rises above this obsession with suffering and sees the obsession-with-suffering-and-pain as just another obstacle to what one now sees as the Work.
Or: when I decided I didn't care any more whether I was happy or not, I found out what it was to be happy.
If anyone who is not attempting to play the role of teacher will consider educating themselves on this subject, they may discover that ``their'' suffering really is not important. They may also discover what conscious suffering is, and the role of suffering in human affairs.
Having watched quite a few people attempt the work over the years, it has certainly been observed that making one's ``personal'' suffering important is a considerable obstacle to doing the work -- and may well make it impossible to ever discover for one's self the Great Work.
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