We Didn’t Steal the Cookie – So Why Must We Suffer?

by Melody Jean

We Didn't Steal the Cookie So Why Must We Suffer Contemporary SeekerIn recent years, and more in recent months and days, because of personal circumstance, I’ve been searching for meaning as to the purpose of chronic illness and disease. Further, why some seem to have to suffer more than others and for longer durations because, yes, I believe some do.

Sinners?  No Way!

Evangelists of all kinds say “they are sinners, and being punished.” Surely that can’t be – because “good people” are afflicted too.

So what purpose can it possibly serve beyond its apparent ability to cause misery in the lives it touches?

We Ignore Our Soul’s Shell

Sufi, Hazrat Inayat Khan, underscored ages ago that we must find balance between soul and body. Yet, often times many on the spiritual path ignore their bodies until our bodies force us to pay attention.

We push ourselves to the limit in this everyday world, to remain a vibrant part there of – work, family, friends, exercise, recreation and more. We forget to rest and love our bodies.

Accepting Good

I often find it humorous when I witness those moseying through life in a shade of bliss. It’s easy to do this when all in the everyday world is going well – family, friends, relationships, health, work and the like. They’re content without question.

When “everything has a place and everything’s in its place,” most don’t question anything at all. Further, they forget to even be grateful. He or she just accepts their good fortune almost self-righteously, after all; we’re entitled to all great things. So accept he or she does. They relish in the materialism offered.

When Questions Begin

Yet, contrary to the aforementioned, sometimes for unexplained reasons, extremely unpleasant experiences or elements befall some. I’m not speaking to break-ups, divorces, job losses or other instances along these lines. We all go through those. Nor am I downplaying other instances that cause suffering (sudden passing of a loved one).

This is pointed where I seek to find meaning in long-term illness and disease and the suffering that ensues in the lives those afflicted (whether personally or watching a close family member). Perhaps you can apply what I found to other instances in your life. I can only hope.

It’s Ripped Away – A Direct Line to the Divine

Sometimes it’s not until our health, or that of a loved one is literally ripped away that we stop to wonder. For instance if you, or a family member is diagnosed with a chronic illness or disease that will cause life-long pain and suffering, or God forbid, a fatal disease that will cause pain until you pass on.

It’s times like these when we utter words such “Oh, please help me.”

We ask for love, kindness, strength, courage and the healing light. We seek outside the materialism of this almighty awesome planet. Go to that place of something bigger, greater than ourselves, because that’s all we have left. It’s as if the pain, the suffering, opens a doorway offering up a direct line to the divine.

It pushes us deeper, inward.

We Didn’t Steal the Cookie – It’s not Punishment

It’s not punishment. We didn’t steal the cookie from the cookie jar. In fact I’m beginning to believe it’s the contrary actually. While heart-wrenching, it can serve as a blessing, a gift. Chronic or fatal illness, and the management of pain associated with it, helps bring forth something we all should be striving for.

It’s an experience known only to those who suffer in this vein, which at some point we all will. For many this painful experience may not happen until they’re closer to actual death.

For others, like me, we may suffer earlier in life or through watching family members suffer. Yet we’re also privy to glimpses of the light, or the real, frequently during our time here. It provides a different perspective.

What we glean makes us stronger, more complete. As a result we’re able to share it within ourselves, and with others.

Arriving – The Message

The great Sufi, Al Ghazzali maintains “Illness itself is one of those forms of experience by which one arrives at the knowledge of God … It is, so to speak, the cord of love by which God draws to Himself the saints.”

Similarly, Rumi, one of the greatest mystical Sufi poets of all time spoke these words “The spiritual path ruins the body, but subsequently restores it to health. It ruins the house to reveal the treasure, and with that treasure it builds better than before.”

Can You See?

Do you see where I’m going with this? Why some suffer greater, for longer durations and why we must endure chronic and fatal illness and disease? I don’t think I need to further elaborate. For if you don’t see it now, perhaps you’re not meant to at this time. Yet, rest assured, your time will come.

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