I have been thinking about it, lately. Can we think away the pain? The article – Pain is Weird gives a good insight concerning how to look at pain to understand it.
“The brain can’t be manipulated simply by wishing, force of will, or a carefully cultivated good attitude. The brain powerfully and imperfectly controls how we experience potentially threatening stimuli, but I’m sorry to report that you do not control your brain. Consciousness and “mind” are by-products of brain function and physiological state. It’s not your opinion of sensory signals that counts, it’s what your brain makes of them that counts — which happens quite independently of consciousness and self-awareness. This is why many wise, calm, confident optimists still have chronic pain.”
There are not just different kinds of physical pains out of injuries and diseases but are mental traumas, several different painful experiences of world too, which are purely cerebral. It is not just that we fret over petty matters, sometimes turbulence in our daily life or dealing with day-to-day affairs might cause a great deal of suffering where initially there is no trace of any physical injury or ailment. If the problem persists for a long duration, we have to find a solution mindfully, as we can’t run away from it and there is a danger of falling into depression. And this mental suffering somehow also starts resulting into some or other kind of disease . The severity depends upon the person’s ability to understand and deal with it. At its extremity, it can be life threatening. We are human beings after all. Sometimes even the solution can be grueling which demands a lot of courage. But we have to take the step. This is why challenges occur in life- to make us more capable of living. Easier said than done though. Apart from psychological anguish and sufferings , interestingly , even physical sufferings turn into mental sufferings. Physical pains caused by a disease or damage do have their psychology and greatly depend upon brain’s reaction towards it. This is quite obvious that physical and mental sufferings can’t be seen apart.
Hallucinating pain: Acute pain usually correlates well with tissue damage (although even horrible tissue damage can be surprisingly painless in the right context). As pain gets more chronic, the relationship often gets messier, and in some cases breaks down altogether. For instance, with severe central sensitization, pain ceases to have anything to do with tissue damage: these patients are hallucinating pain.
Developing confidence, changing social experience to change your brain, whichever way, seem to be a good idea and must be useful. Sensitive people naturally tend to feel more pain as we cannot be more sensitive to pleasure without being more sensitive to pain. That is why sensitive people need it more than others to look into it deeply and understand the pain.
“To remain stable is to refrain from trying to separate yourself from a pain because you know that you cannot. Running away from fear is fear, fighting pain is pain, trying to be brave is being scared. If the mind is in pain, the mind is pain. The thinker has no other form than his thought. There is no escape.”
~ Alan Watts
And as it goes the Zen way, pain and sufferings are a part or rather a way how life expresses itself. Accepting it won’t change the circumstances for sure but it will help mind to prevent the over-dramatization of your pain and increasing the severity to a dangerous level.
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