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Reader comment on Charlotte Joko Beck's passage ...

Willing to Experience our Suffering


On Dec 22, 2009 Bill Miller wrote:

The thing I found most interesting in this piece was the little exegesis on the word “suffering”. Note that a literal interpretation of the word does not necessarily imply something bad/negative - it  simply points to something to “bear up under”. It could be something good! (Recall the King James translation of Jesus’ request to “suffer the children to come unto me”. I’m sure he wasn’t suggesting they be made to crawl over broken glass.) 

In that light, life itself is something that we bear up under, when we are fully engaged with it. It is noteworthy that in contemporary usage, the word “suffer” has become synonymous with ongoing pain - you know, that grim ethic which portrays life as primarily ongoing struggle and torment.

Yet by our individual and collective choices and actions, we create the world we live in. Why not choose to “bear up” the things that are happy and loving?



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