Saturday, 29 November 2008

Pain. What is it ?

Photo: Ruia McKerrow



Pain, occurs on a physical, mental and spiritual level. I spent two years in 1985-86 living in the high Arctic regions of northen Canada and Alaska, eventually pushing for the north pole in 1986.


Two of my companions Geoff Carroll and Brent Boddy married remarkable Innuit women and they lived many aspects of the traditional Innuit life. I learned a lot from Brent and Geoff and from the Innuit communities we stayed with.In those yeasrs of travelling in the Arctic I had one quote scrawled across the front of my diary:

It is only through pain, suffering and hardship that the human heart will be unlocked to greatness.

Did I know what this Innuit proverb was saying ? I think not. At that stage I had experienced emotional and spiritual pain, but not weeks of raw, unending pain, that niggles and buries, never leaving you alone.

This morning I read some thoughts from Khalil Gibran on pain. I think I found what he was saying:

Your pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses your understanding. Even as the stone of the fruit must break, that its heart may stand in the sun, so must you know pain.


And could you keep your heart in wonder at the daily miracles of your life, your pain would not seem less wondrous than your joy; And you would accept the seasons of your heart, even as you have always accepted the seasons that pass over your fields.


And you would watch with serenity through the winters of your grief. Much of your pain is self-chosen. It is the bitter potion by which the physician within you heals your sick self.


Therefore trust the physician, and drink his remedy in silence and tranquillity: For his hand, though heavy and hard, is guided by the tender hand of the Unseen, And the cup he brings, though it burn your lips, has been fashioned of the clay which the Potter has moistened with His own sacred tears

These lines gave me the answers:

Much of your pain is self-chosen. It is the bitter potion by which the physician within you heals your sick self. Therefore trust the physician, and drink his remedy in silence and tranquillity: For his hand, though heavy and hard, is guided by the tender hand of the Unseen, And the cup he brings, though it burn your lips, has been fashioned of the clay which the Potter has moistened with His own sacred tears.

Bob





6 comments:

Marja said...

Thanks you so much I absolutely love Khalil Gibran and haven't read these words yet I copied them so I can soak in his words slowly by rereading them again. I find that the seasons pass through pain and joy but like moving to NZ brought longer summers, I found longer summers in my life as well, with which I am pretty content. I find that the almighty power of the physician inside you can bring along the understanding and shorten wintertimes.
Take care

Bob McKerrow said...

Hi Marja

Gibran's words are like pain, as you need to let the worls seep through you and feel the bitterness with the positive, and accepting the outcomes, or your choices.

Will give you a call this week.

Take care

Bob

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