What is Suffering?

Swami Satyananda Saraswati

Suffering is a blessing in disguise. We are always afraid of suffering, and we do not want to suffer. However, suffering is a means of realizing and exterminating the negative karma. You should welcome it just as you welcome an operation when your appendix or any other organ is inflamed. There are people who do not like suffering; therefore they feel it more. There are those who enjoy suffering; thereby they are able to increase their tolerance and will.

Pain and suffering is a crucible into which Nature throws a man whenever She wants to make him a sublime superman. Do you realize how much Christ or Mahatma Gandhi had to suffer? Sri Rama spent fourteen years in exile. There were only thorns in his life; the pain of exile was only one of them.

So, if you suffer, you should always think that God is trying to awaken you from your stupor. You must know sorrow; it is a learning experience for you. Sorrow makes you learn.