Sloth said: sometimes pain is far too great for us to bear but sometimes we also make 'mountains out of molehills' and thereby we suffer unnecessarily.
^ is this necessary - does this thinking that sometime pain is far too great for us to bear - is this necessary?
^ is this true? is it a universal truth, an ingrained societal perspective or wisdom of personal experience? Is it true?
^ is this kind - is this notion that sometimes pain is far too great for us to bear... is this kind to suggest or expect that our back was not made for our burdens, that we are less than the experiences we encounter. Is this kind to self, is this what love and compassion would tell you, or is this what fear and ego would have you think?
Is it necessary, is it true, is it kind?
It depends what you mean by necessary. I would certainly suggest that it is an inevitability, however, that some pains will cause us to suffer. Perhaps this is of no fault of our own - the physical world is greater than we mortals, or perhaps it is simply because we are volatile in the choices we make - we will eventually slip up and our egotistic nature will return once again.
So if you are questioning whether it is necessary to believe this, then I would suggest that it is, after all if we believe we are invincible to suffering this will not help us on our quest to avoid it. One will become arrogant in the face of danger - 'I can overcome this car that is about to run me over'.
Sloth can you see that the first assumption - "that sometimes pain is far too great for us to bear"
is not actually true, its a dramatisation of a perceived response to pain.
Absolutely pain can be intense physical agony, absolutely.
But like all things we only experience - in reality - one moment at a time, and this notion of pain that is too great to bear is in a way a collective imagining outside of this moment.
Therefore why do you think it is necessary to believe that it is true?
Did you also notice you've inter-changed physical pain and emotional suffering after defining them as separate earlier - being hit by a car absolutely will likely create pain, but the suffering is dependent upon how we feel about being hit by a car, how we feel about any pain and how we make the journey between expectation and reality.
Saying 'some pains will cause us to suffer' is very different in resonance of acceptance to 'sometimes pain is far too great for us to bear.' It is in these nuances that being aware of the thoughts that we entertain wakes us up a bit.
Sloth said: There are no universal truths, or at least none that I know of - it is beyond my cognition to comment - and no philosopher has ever accepted the argumentum ad populum as valid. I would say that experience suggests it to be true.
Maybe I've misunderstood what you meant for surely if by experience you've encountered pain too great to bear... how is it that you are here? Surely if it was too great for you to bear it would have killed you?
Inevitably, if one is telling them self something that is not necessary, not true and not kind they will be creating their own suffering.
Jen said: expectation is not real.
Sloth said: What do you mean?
Expectations are in the unmanifested, imaginings, it's a pre-supposing. I've used an example that say you're driving and the driver in front of you indicates that they're turning right - you have a valid expectation by social agreement that they will turn right. If however they don't turn right the expectation was unfounded - it was never real in terms of manifest, it was a pre-supposing. Now once you realise (real-ise) the situation that the car in front is not turning right you make the necessary adjustments to accommodate the reality. It's absolutely true that some folks would want to, and do, hold onto the expectation, start ranting at the driver in the car in front, get them self all upset and angry because ----WHATEVER --- happened in the car in front was outside of their expectation. In reality though indicating is a courtesy, and yes imposed by laws as a communication system between road users, but its fallible, it's imperfect and often we have- no idea --- but are willing to judge --- what's going on in the other car, even to attributing personality traits, parental status and masses of untrue judgements on the person driving. This may then be used as the excuse to kick the dog or beat the wife when one gets home, or to 'hate' etc All of this from an unfounded, unmanifested expectation being at distance to reality.
Our expectations may be understandable, but they are not real.
In terms of grief the journey between expectations and reality are many, multitudes. We no sooner reconcile one expectation with the reality and another that we held arises, the journey may be peaceful and considered or it may involve all the ranting and judgements and suffering as in the simple example above.
Which is why is it necessary? 'is it true?' is it kind? is helpful.
Jen said: And yes 'people' may have resistance to something occurring that they don't expect, but when they realise the sky doesn't fall in it allows them to move from 'assuming' possibly to enquiring, possibly to understanding and possibly to adopting.
Sloth said: Could it ever be fine and socially acceptable to rejoice at the death of a loved one?
I believe it could be fine in certain circumstances, in fact I led three cheers for Elisabeth Kubler Ross when she finally passed out of her body, her fully knowing that she was and fully impatient to go having finally fulfilled all she needed to here. I guess a big part of that was that she does not consider physical death the end of her journey, and having been 'trapped' in her words in a stroke affected body that limited her, she sad once that she felt like she was on an airplane stuck on the tarmac for seven years, waiting to either take off or get off the plane and she could do neither, so yes, when she knowingly and willingly left her body, we did rejoice for her - with her, in absolute love and compassion. Is she missed? absolutely, do people grieve for her, absolutely - but thanks to her they understand grief a little more and do not fear it.
It would be wise to understand whose 'version' of 'rejoice' are you employing, and whose rejoicing are you judging, and what is 'socially acceptable' if not a projection outside of the experience itself in the moment?
Now, that's not to say that sadness wouldn't figure in there too, or compassion, or sensitivity or the emotions of loss, they do, and that's okay too.
Most people would suggest that compassion presupposes some kind of ornate attachment to the one you love, that were you to lose that person you would feel a great sense of despairing. Not just because of the loss of the object of your desire but out of loyalty and respect.
hmmm I would be wary of loyalty and respect that oversteps its boundaries projecting onto another.
Who are these 'most people' - is that a call to validity for something that does not necessarily stand up on its own?
'some kind of ornate attachment' sounds kinda cute - it still wouldn't trump reality of separate physical identities and experiences.
The 'despairing' is actually self centred and self focussed but using the 'other' as the means of expressing those emotions in the distance between expectation and reality. eg this should not have happened to 'my' xyz. My xyz should have been here etc etc
Sloth said: So I speak of 'people' that believe in this and that but the reality is that there is always a reason for believing in such and such. It is still very much a subjective belief, one's morality but the reasons that inform those beliefs may be subject to rigorous debate. The point is that if you truly loved someone, all notions of right and wrong aside, it would be beyond your power not to suffer.
So you go from accepting subjectivity to ignoring it and claiming to know what would be beyond another's power.. hmm. Even if you were to apply that to yourself it would not be true, it would not be necessary and it would not be kind, let alone to direct it elsewhere.
I have truly loved (many) and grieved for many but not beyond my ability and not beyond my capacity for pain and not without elements of rejoicing with the truth. One moment may be pain, one moment may be joy. Through experience one learns the road between expectation and reality, one learns what helps, what hinders, what prolongs suffering and what alleviates it. Putting it 'out there' and saying its too hard, is not facing your own reality.
Does it hurt? Absolutely! but only for one moment at a time and much as I used to argue against this... your back was made for your burden.
Sloth said: If being upset is more in line with their own moral code, perhaps it will relieve their own conscience to disprove of the way others conduct their lives. We could be talking about judging someone who is not grieving properly but we could also be talking about judging someone who is a mass murderer or paedophile. Does being upset then change anything? And yet, people who experience compassion seem to care about these things and people that violate their principles will cause them pain and upset, suffering, even. (But then so do people who are overly judgemental and disapproving but for the wrong reasons).
How can one relieve oneself of something that one is creating?
Who says how grieving is to be done 'properly'? Through grieving (like through everything) we learn what helps, what hurts more, what creates more suffering and what alleviates suffering. There is no 'pass mark' on grieving. (hehehehe I'd just about get a High Distinction if there were, albeit many would likely disapprove
Different is not wrong. It's just different.
It is wise to understand that one's own perspective is just one of many, not really holding any more weight than we give it.