Just look back at your life.
When was the last time you were happy about something?
When was the last time you wondered about the meaning of life?
Did you look inwards to see who you are or what life is all about?
Did you feel the need to deeply know about the ultimate Truth?
When things go smoothly you just blindly follow the same routine with barely any awareness or consciousness. There is nothing to jolt you into awareness from your routine and you continue without any awareness.
But when pain happens, it makes you look at life objectively. It forces you to look deeper into life, to learn why you react the way you react and seek to uncover the real mystery of life. Pain is a blessing in disguise. It is the key that can open the door to the world of reality. The choice is yours to open the door or not.
Pain can simply shake you out of both the dream state and the ‘waking dream’ state you are in.
Please understand that even if you are awake, you are not completely in touch with reality. You live in a world of your desires and fears, which is called a ‘waking dream.’ You see things only with the lens of greed and fear. Pain can be a great teacher that simply jolts you out of the dream and puts you in touch with reality as it is.
With pain, your usual thought patterns are shattered and you begin to see things as they actually are. You begin to recognize a subtle distance between you and the pain. You see that it is not something that is a part of your nature.
Never curse the pain or the person who is inflicting the pain on you. Instead, take the opportunity to use it as a blessing, to go in, watch objectively, and cut the root of the pain. Pain can be a great teacher if you allow it to be. If in one instance you properly research the cause and effect of pain within you, it can turn out to be the biggest turning point in your life.
One important thing we need to understand is that while pain might be inevitable, the suffering that comes from the pain is not.
For example, if you get hurt, there is definitely pain, but how much you choose to suffer from that pain is really your choice. Suffering is not a state of life. It is a state of mind. It is not an event in your life. It is your response to an event. In a particular situation, whether you suffer or not depends entirely on your reaction to that situation. It is a question of attitude! Pain is inevitable, but suffering is your choice
One of the most deeply hidden reasons for suffering is that you may be enjoying it.
For example, falling ill can become a source of pleasure if it gets you the attention and care you have been craving. Look deeply at why it sometimes gives you pleasure to inflict pain on yourself or on others. Is there a better channel through which you can receive the same pleasure without the suffering?
In the same way as a seed has to rupture before a plant can grow and blossom, intense suffering can rupture your ego and leave you open and vulnerable to transformation. In the great epic Mahabharata, there is a beautiful quote by Kunti, the mother of the Pandavas, the heroes of the story. She prays to Krishna, the enlightened master, ‘Oh Krishna! Let pain and suffering come from all sides in my life. They will constantly remind me about You, my Lord.’ Kunti* is asking the Lord to bless her with pain and suffering so that she may constantly remember Him for relief! In modern days, we need not go to this extent, but we can understand the potential of suffering in the context of our own inner clarity.
Suffering has tremendous potential to integrate and transform us.
Start to witness your experiences without judgment. See with clarity where you are suffering at the gross and subtle levels. If you are just aware, the suffering itself can open your eyes to the unreality of suffering. It can teach you how unnecessary it is to suffer at all. This is what I call ‘necessary suffering’! Once you learn your lesson through necessary suffering, you will handle suffering in a much more mature and beautiful way.
The master Bodhidharma says, ‘Every suffering is a Buddha-seed.’ Suffering can propel you to become a Buddha. It can bring you the wisdom of knowing all about life and reality. He says, don’t be against suffering. Feel grateful to suffering and pain because they create the situation for you to search for the truth. Otherwise, you will just live life like a rock or plant. You will not realize the ultimate, which can only be achieved by the human consciousness. If the body and mind are the field, suffering is the seed, wisdom is the sprout, and the ultimate state you attain is the grain!
When you sow the seed of suffering in the field that is your body-mind, wisdom sprouts from it, and you attain the ultimate state!
source: Living Enlightenment