On addiction to pain
The fourth chakra is where we cleanse and heal our wounds from having a broken heart which caused our hearts to bleed energetically. It is very important for us to distinguish and separate the inner definition of Love from any other energies that might feel “nice” for a moment, but are actually causing us unneeded pain in the long run. It took me years to understand as a young woman, that the abusive relationship I was in wasn’t Love. It took me even more years, to distinguish between actual, real Love, and manipulative energies which has nothing to do with it, when I encountered potential suiters. I really needed to practice and understand within myself how to make Love, and how to create it actively, without shame and with courage to really open my heart. Not to “tickle” the wounds around it – but to truly open and expand my heart.
The first step in healing our hearts is to define which behaviors are Love is, and which aren’t. This is so confusing in the culture we grew up in, which is so thin in Love. We find ourselves use sex, no matter how meaningless, as a substitute for Love, not realizing the huge difference between the two entities. We have even become masters of having sex without any emotions involved. Unfortunately, we practiced all too well how to be separated even during sex, and only use each other to create a momentary illusion of closeness and intimacy. But deep down, we know that we are pretending because we don’t know how to really open our hearts. This is something that we haven’t practiced yet.
Now is the time.
And it's surprising and amazing to realize how much there's a sizable portion of pleasure in pain. Pain is the biggest thing that we are addicted to.
We see this pain everywhere, confusing it so many times with Love. We use mutual pain to get closer to each other. Have you ever noticed how in the movies the main characters always have their first kiss after she cries, or after he hurt her? As though the pain, and not the Love, is the trigger of a closeness and intimacy.
So many songs, so much art, have been created about broken "love". And so many times, we are addicted to fantasizing about him/her so much, the one who didn't want us. Even the sayings – falling in love, having a crush on someone, falling head over heels – these are words that describe pain, as though Love is something you fall or crush into.
It is not.
Love is not something you fall into. Love is something you rise up to.
And it is important to distinguish between the feelings of Love and pain. They are not the same thing. The breath being taken away, the tears, they are not a symptom of Love. In the presence of real Love the waves are serene, the breath is full quiet. Next to Love, you can rest.
We confuse pain with Love so often because when someone touches that sensitive spot inside us we feel exposed and therefore get attached to that person. We confuse the sensation of fear from abandonment and our reaction to Love. We can't seem to tell the two apart, we can't seem to notice exactly which kind of deep, subtle, spot is being touched within us.
We learn, as little children, that when we are sick, we'd be cuddled more, pitied, get all the attention, all the sweets, a free pass from school. We also know in ourselves as grown-ups, that when we see someone else in pain, we feel compassion - the highest form of Love - towards them. We almost want them to show us their pain so that compassion can be triggered in us. And so, like dogs that receive a treat when they behave well, we too become trained to create and express more and more pain, in order to be rewarded with Love. It is such a slippery slope in which we become infinite victims.
Pain gives us a great excuse. When we are in pain, we finally "feel". I am in pain – therefore I exist, now it's real. Only then do we finally allow ourselves to ask for sympathy from our surrounding, warmth and empathy. Only in times of grief we allow ourselves to be our true selves and let go of our guard. Pain and grief brings out the energy of compassion from us, and it feels like love. Pain is an excuse for us to open that channel where it's OK to finally express and feel our authenticity.
That is why, in a way we seek pain. It's so hard for us to admit to ourselves that sometimes we enjoy pain. There's something thrilling and dramatic about it. It is hard but important to face this fact.
The path of pain is a path that we have learned to master so well over the years, that we almost don’t even know how to march another path. But Love is much simpler than pain. Love is spontaneous. In order to get used to the simple Infinite Love we have to learn how to let go of the need for drama, and remind ourselves that Love is not painful.
Love is that amorphous, Universal abstract energy that surrounds us all, at any time, all the time, and everywhere, and we only need to raise our head above the muddy waters, over that collective bubble of pain we are addicted to, and see It.
Then we see that there's Love, the Creating Force of the Universe, and then there is everything else.
In order for us to rise towards it we must agree to lay down our swords. We must agree to stop fighting. We must agree to stop bickering. We must stop trying to defend ourselves. We must stop, stop, stop playing this game of longing for drama, for finding pleasure in the negative. To stop this bizarre enjoyment of wanting only him, only her, the one who didn’t want us, that bizarre pleasantness we have when we suffer.
To drop our swords, means, to simply sit back and rest. Rest. Rest. Love surrounds us all, always and in every given moment. It is always around us. We just need to give It room, to move aside that chunk of pain and let Love enter instead. To stop hurting, almost out of laziness, like it's a muscle that we can't be bothered with activating anymore, and just rest. Rest. Rest. Take a deep breath and fill our lungs with the Love that is in every molecule of air.
To Love myself, to feel self-compassion (not pity, but compassion), to ease into Love. To take a another deep breath, and realize that I am OK. I am always, always, surrounded by Love.
As the Great Poet Hafiz wrote (translated by Daniel Ladinsky:
"I have come into this world to see this:
The sword drop from men’s hands even at the height of their arc of anger
Because we have finally realized there is just one flesh to wound
And it is His – the Christ’s, our Beloved’s.
I have come into this world to see this:
All creatures hold hands as we pass through this miraculous existence we share
On the way to even a greater being of soul,
A being of just ecstatic light, forever entwined and at play with Him.
I have come into this world to hear this:
Every song the earth has sung since it was conceived in the Divine’s womb
And began spinning from His wish,
Every song by wing and fin and hoof,
Every song by hill and field and tree and woman and child,
Every song of stream and rock,
Every song of tool and lyre and flute,
Every song of gold and emerald and fire,
Every song the heart should cry with magnificent dignity
To know itself as God:
For all other knowledge will leave us again in want and aching –
only imbibing the glorious Sun will complete us.
I have come into this world to experience this:
Men so true to love they would rather die before speaking an unkind word,
Men so true their lives are His covenant – the promise of hope.
I have come into this world to see this:
The sword drop from men’s hands even at the height of their arc of rage
Because we have finally realized there is just one flesh we can wound.
we must practice expressing compassion not only when we feel the other's pain. That is the only way to create a new regime, a new Earth, a new home for humanity. A home where we are all caring and compassionate towards each other, regardless of the level of pain people are coping with.