Friend: In suffering you will become either a) heartless robot ignoring human emotions and devoid of compassion, b) broken down scared victim, or c) true human with heart and soul, able to face reality with honor and sincerity.
Magdi: d) you are drawn to the contemplation (of the source).
Friend: Yes good one of course. However, something happens then, doesn’t it?
Magdi: Yes… Since it is via grace that one is drawn to contemplation. An impersonal calling of sort…
Friend: …and then what?
Magdi: The mind becomes interested in the (divine) source, and in time, grace sneaks up on you, swallows you and reveals itSelf. The glorious eternal Self.
Friend: That sounds cool. But how long does it last?
Magdi: In ignorance, you exist in time.
But upon the revelation of the Self, you cease to arise in time and the impression of time arises in you with purely practical significance, without any psychological angst.
Friend: Seeing of the illusion of this temporal world and many ideas associated with it can only stop false suffering, wich comes from ego and focusing on it. But there is another kind of suffering which we should not evade. It is hard to explain with words, one has to feel it.
Magdi: As long as there is suffering, we are still on the path.
Friend: Yes, and let me assure you Magdi, with all due respect and sincere best wishes for you – suffering will continue to be present in your life till you die. But it is not something to be ashamed of or be afraid of or run away from. No one has ever freed himself from suffering completely, if someone says he did, he is a liar. Only false, ego-focused imagined suffering must be destroyed. But there is another one, which makes you better every time you suffer.
Magdi: Why not remain open around this point?
Maybe it is as you say.
Isn’t suffering the result of the impression of separation? The me impression? (I am assuming we are agreeing about meaning of the term suffering. By suffering I refer to psychological resistance and seeking).
Why not be open to the possibility that resistance and seeking may come to an end? This does not mean that the body does not feel pain. This does not mean that the heart will not feel empathy.
By suffering I am very specifically referring to ‘resistance and seeking’. The me-feeling.
As long as the me-sense is not completely dissolved out of the mind and out of the body, traces of the suffering impression remain.
CG: Thanks Magdi…. The intersection of the illusion of time and eternity is this present moment. If you draw a cross, the left to right line represents moving along in time and the vertical line represents eternity. The point of power, of awakening is always in this present moment. I agree about time then having practical significance.
Magdi: Yes CG.
The practical significance of time is never a problem and is useful to navigate and organize the waking dream.
It is the psychological dimension (the line left to right) that is the source of suffering: The sense of me-in-time.
The belief that I am a mortal body mind is ignorance and can come to an end.
Friend: Yes, regarding false me-ego-idea suffering, it is false as I said. This type of psycological suffering which is a source of all depressions and misery, must be challenged and destroyed, by clear teachings that bring light. But this is not the only type of suffering. Also, no human being ever has totally rid himself of the restrictions of the “self” and parts of illusions associated with it. Of course with various rate of success, but still. Thing is, none of us is a superman who is devoid of even possibility to suffer till the end of his life. I said before and repeat again: anyone who says that he/she is completely free of suffering and is going to remain so till the end of his life, is lying. We as humans are supposed to share with each other. Both suffering and joy. This is what makes us true humans and our life – real and rich. When we focused on making other people be freed from suffering, we suffer less as a consequence, because we stop remembering ourselves and our egos. But we need to be careful and truthful in this quest, not to give people false concepts, which will harm then even more.
Magdi: Empathy and compassion are not suffering.
Suffering is identification with a form.
Friend: we can say these words that it is ignorance and must come to the end, but it will never happen till we die. No problem with that either. We live, we suffer, we rejoice, we die.
Magdi: Why not be open to the possibility that ignorance can end as this body is still functioning?
Why limit the infinite possibilities?
Anyways, it is our freedom to believe whatever we choose to believe.
Friend: No. Suffering is not ONLY identification with the form, it is also a quality of a true human.
Magdi: It is all about suffering Ron. And the end of suffering.
I should add it is also about the revelation of divine ananda. The Bliss of the Self.
Friend: Magdi, please believe me, I do not want you or anyone to suffer, but it will still happen. To you, to me and to all of us. No matter how much clever words we may use.
Magdi: Once the bliss of the Self is revealed, then empathy and compassion are effortless and void of any self-interest.
That is true connection.
The separate self is a package deal with suffering…
Friend: But suffering will not completely disappear in our lives till we die. Whoever insist on the contrary is deceiving himself and others.
Magdi: What I understand you to say is that suffering will continue as long as there is a body.
I say: Who knows. Maybe not?
Why not be open to the possibility that suffering can completely end while the body is still alive?
Friend: It will, trust me. These are all just wishful speculations.dont be afraid of suffering. Be rather afraid of not being able to suffer any more.
Magdi: Suffering has been an important topic of contemplation here. It has triggered deep inquiry and not fear.
Thanks for exploring … Much love to you…
Friend: Same to you too dear friend.
CG: There used to be a popular expression….”Ah, the human condition!” meaning, living in a cloud of unknowing and suffering because of that ignorance, suffering that endures until one experiences some kind of awakening. Buddhism describes numerous kinds of suffering…. dissatisfaction of various kinds causes suffering, mostly arising from wanting things to be other than what they are. The “cure” being seeing things clearly, just as they are and not resisting that truth, not only not resisting, but surrendering to it somehow, resting in it, allowing things to be as they are.
Magdi: Like sugar and salt dissolve in water.
Like dreams dissolve in the Self.
All angst and aches dissolve in the open aware presence of the Self.
The revelation of the eternity and reality of impersonal consciousness is the removal of ignorance.
A guide who has traveled this road is a good companion to befriend.
Photo by Sasa Gyoker