“Am I wrong? I started out thinking that I don’t suffer, that I am a happy person, that in fact something was wrong with me if I weren’t happy and could admit to suffering.
Does not our media offer a purchasable solution to every known unhappiness under the sun? It’s un-American to be unhappy.
That’s what I thought. But what about lines such as “lives of quiet desperation”, “tired with all these for restful death I cry” and the like. I realized that the connections is my thoughts weren’t really connecting to legitimate claims and feelings.
After some time had passed, time of talk and reflection and reading and study I realized that I agreed that there are sufferings in life that are unavoidable, sufferings in life that are common to all humanity and that these sufferings can be distilled down to four universal sufferings: birth, death, illness and old age. These are four conditions which all human beings go through and they are, by their very nature, fraught with hardships.
The sufferings of birth does not refer to pain of the birth canal passage or Freudian ideas of leaving the womb. Once I’m born, if I live, I’m going to run into frustration of one sort or another, such as misunderstandings of speech, being in a hurry and encountering a slow talker whom I must hear out for directions, having to wait in lines when I don’t want to, “the thousand natural shocks that flesh in heir to”.
No amount of purchases, no matter what is advertised will ever remove me from that basic suffering or from the other three that are even more self evident.
So the next question is what do I do about it in order to make the most value out of my life. I agree with the writing that affirms that I can create the most value out of my life and be as happy as I can be amidst the four sufferings by learning to cultivate my humanity, reach out to those who are suffering, gain the trust of the people around me, create value out of every situation and live with a fighting spirit.
In this quest I wrote my book-in-progress, Growth is Inevitable (When You Challenge Family Discord).