Author Topic: pain and suffering  (Read 1122 times)

Offline Su Onn

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pain and suffering
« on: May 17, 2015, 01:51:41 am »
When pain arises, we would do anything to remove the pain and this in turn will create more and more suffering.

What should we do instead when pain arises?

Offline Ron-the-Elder

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Re: pain and suffering
« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2015, 03:26:12 am »
This is how Buddha defined dukkha: 

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"Now this, monks, is the Noble Truth of dukkha: Birth is dukkha, aging is dukkha, death is dukkha; sorrow, lamentation, pain, grief, & despair are dukkha; association with the unbeloved is dukkha; separation from the loved is dukkha; not getting what is wanted is dukkha. In short, the five clinging-aggregates are dukkha."

— SN 56.11


You mention only one of what Buddha called "This entire ball of suffering..":  pain.

Sariputta, one of Buddha's original Sangha and finest students, an arahant elaborated in this way:

Quote
[Ven. Sariputta:] "Now what, friends, is the noble truth of stress? Birth is stressful, aging is stressful, death is stressful; sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair are stressful; association with the unbeloved is stressful; separation from the loved is stressful; not getting what is wanted is stressful. In short, the five clinging-aggregates are stressful.

"And what is birth? Whatever birth, taking birth, descent, coming-to-be, coming-forth, appearance of aggregates, & acquisition of [sense] spheres of the various beings in this or that group of beings, that is called birth.

"And what is aging? Whatever aging, decrepitude, brokenness, graying, wrinkling, decline of life-force, weakening of the faculties of the various beings in this or that group of beings, that is called aging.

"And what is death? Whatever deceasing, passing away, breaking up, disappearance, dying, death, completion of time, break up of the aggregates, casting off of the body, interruption in the life faculty of the various beings in this or that group of beings, that is called death.

"And what is sorrow? Whatever sorrow, sorrowing, sadness, inward sorrow, inward sadness of anyone suffering from misfortune, touched by a painful thing, that is called sorrow.

"And what is lamentation? Whatever crying, grieving, lamenting, weeping, wailing, lamentation of anyone suffering from misfortune, touched by a painful thing, that is called lamentation.

"And what is pain? Whatever is experienced as bodily pain, bodily discomfort, pain or discomfort born of bodily contact, that is called pain.

"And what is distress? Whatever is experienced as mental pain, mental discomfort, pain or discomfort born of mental contact, that is called distress.

"And what is despair? Whatever despair, despondency, desperation of anyone suffering from misfortune, touched by a painful thing, that is called despair.

"And what is the stress of association with the unbeloved? There is the case where undesirable, unpleasing, unattractive sights, sounds, aromas, flavors, or tactile sensations occur to one; or one has connection, contact, relationship, interaction with those who wish one ill, who wish for one's harm, who wish for one's discomfort, who wish one no security from the yoke. This is called the stress of association with the unbeloved.

"And what is the stress of separation from the loved? There is the case where desirable, pleasing, attractive sights, sounds, aromas, flavors, or tactile sensations do not occur to one; or one has no connection, no contact, no relationship, no interaction with those who wish one well, who wish for one's benefit, who wish for one's comfort, who wish one security from the yoke, nor with one's mother, father, brother, sister, friends, companions, or relatives. This is called the stress of separation from the loved.

"And what is the stress of not getting what is wanted? In beings subject to birth, the wish arises, 'O, may we not be subject to birth, and may birth not come to us.' But this is not to be achieved by wanting. This is the stress of not getting what is wanted. In beings subject to aging... illness... death... sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair, the wish arises, 'O, may we not be subject to aging... illness... death... sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair, and may aging... illness... death... sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair not come to us.' But this is not to be achieved by wanting. This is the stress of not getting what is wanted.

"And what are the five clinging-aggregates that, in short, are stressful? The clinging-aggregate of form, the clinging-aggregate of feeling, the clinging-aggregate of perception, the clinging-aggregate of fabrications, the clinging-aggregate of consciousness: These are called the five clinging-aggregates that, in short, are stressful.

"This, friends, is called the noble truth of stress.

— MN 141


As Sariputa stated, pain is a physiological indicator that something is physically or mentally wrong.  Like birth, aging, disease, death, and rebirth, there is nothing to be done about it after the fact, because it has already arisen.  All that we can hope to do is prevent it from arising again by perfecting our practice and not being reborn.

Suffering, stress, disatisfaction, and all the rest of what Buddha described as "dukkha", however, can be avoided and eliminated by awareness and penetration of the Four Noble Truths and by living one's life in accordance with The Noble Eight Fold Path. 

That is the focus of study and practice of Buddha's teachings, what we call Buddhism.



http://www.accesstoinsight.org/ptf/dhamma/sacca/sacca1/
« Last Edit: May 17, 2015, 03:36:18 am by Ron-the-Elder »
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-Dhammpada, 19, translated by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.

Offline Su Onn

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Re: pain and suffering
« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2015, 07:47:47 pm »
There is nothing can be done about pain? But what if we have ways to remove the pain?

Offline Galen

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Re: pain and suffering
« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2015, 09:37:43 pm »
You know, I believe that Ron gave a really good and really complete explanation.

I think pain gets a bad rap.

It happens in life, whether physical or mental pain.

It doesn't mean that we are bad people,  sh...t happens.

But think of the opportunity!

We get to experience our own strength, courage, resilience.
We get to put all those Buddhist practice to use.

We get to be our best Buddhist self, using all of the teachings we were taught becoming what we were meant to be.

Tried tested and true.

Toni Bernhard wrote the wonderful book "How to Be Sick"   she has a chronic illness that she has to deal with every day!
And by reading it you can get a sense how she meets it each day with integrity and dignity, using the many practices that she talks about in her book.

You first asked : "What should we do instead when pain arises?"

We should meet it head on, what they call "Leaning into the sharp points"

"But what if we have ways to remove the pain?"

Well if we are in physical pain and there are pain killers that can remove it, for sure, use it.

I you are talking about suicide, then I don't agree with it.
you may be ending your own pain but putting it on someone else that cars about you.

If you are talking about emotional pain and using drugs or alcohol to self-medicate, well then the idea that you are removing the pain is an illusion.


   

Offline Provider

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Re: pain and suffering
« Reply #4 on: May 22, 2015, 02:41:14 am »
There is nothing can be done about pain? But what if we have ways to remove the pain?


Who says "there is nothing can be done about pain", Mr/Mrs Su Onn? And what is meant by "ways to remove the pain", "remove pain"?

Such?


14.  Factors of Enlightenment (Maha Cunda Thera Bojjhanga[1]



Thus have I heard:


On one occasion the Blessed One was living near Rajagaha in the
bamboo grove in the squirrels' feeding ground. At that time, he was
afflicted with a disease, was suffering therefrom, and was gravely ill.


Then the Venerable Maha Cunda[2] 'arising from his solitude at eventide'[3] approached the Blessed One, saluted him, and sat down beside him.


To the Venerable Maha Cunda thus seated, the Blessed One said:


"O Cunda, let the factors of enlightenment occur to your mind."


"These seven factors of enlightenment, bhante (Ven. Sir), are
well expounded and are cultivated and fully developed by the Blessed
One. They conduce to perfect understanding, to full realization and to
Nibbana. What are the seven?


i. "Mindfulness, the factor of enlightenment, bhante, is well
expounded by the Blessed One, and is cultivated and fully developed by
the Blessed One. It conduces to perfect understanding, to full
realization and to Nibbana.


ii. "Investigation of the Dhamma, the factor of enlightenment, bhante,
 is well expounded by the Blessed One and is cultivated and fully
developed by the Blessed One. It conduces to perfect understanding, to
full realization and to Nibbana.


iii. "Persevering effort, the factor of enlightenment, bhante,
 is well expounded by the Blessed One and is cultivated and fully
developed by the Blessed One. It conduces to perfect understanding, to
full realization and to Nibbana.


iv. "Rapture, the factor of enlightenment, bhante, is well
expounded by the Blessed One and is cultivated and fully developed by
the Blessed One. It conduces to perfect understanding, to full
realization and to Nibbana.


v. "Calm, the factor of enlightenment, bhante, is well
expounded by the Blessed One and is cultivated and fully developed by
the Blessed One. It conduces to perfect understanding, to full
realization and to Nibbana.


vi. "Concentration, the factor of enlightenment, bhante, is
well expounded by the Blessed One and is cultivated and fully developed
by the Blessed One. It conduces to perfect understanding, to full
realization and to Nibbana.


vii. "Equanimity, the factor of enlightenment, bhante, is well
 expounded by the Blessed One, and is cultivated and fully developed by
the Blessed One. It conduces to perfect understanding, to full
realization and to Nibbana.


These seven factors of enlightenment, bhante, are well
expounded and cultivated and fully developed by the Blessed One. They
conduce to perfect understanding, to full realization and to Nibbana."


"Most assuredly Cunda, they are factors of enlightenment. Most assuredly, Cunda, they are factors of enlightenment."


Thus said the Venerable Maha Cunda, and the Master approved of it.
Then the Blessed One recovered from his affliction, and thus disappeared
 his affliction.





Notes

 1.   S. v. 81.
 2.   Younger brother of the Venerable Sariputta. [Is this an error? According to Nyanaponika in Great Disciples of the Buddha
 (Somerville, Massachusetts: Wisdom Publications, 1997), p. 33, Cunda's
monastic name was Samanuddesa, to distinguish him from the elder Ven.
Mahacunda. — ATI ed.]
 3.   "Sayanha samayam patisallana vutthito," not found in the original Samyutta text.



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Offline Su Onn

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Re: pain and suffering
« Reply #5 on: May 22, 2015, 11:55:09 pm »
actually im asking Ron as he said ''there is ntg can be done about it as it has arisen'', and i asked, wat if we have ways to overcome that pain/suffering   :pray:

 


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