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  1. O.Christina

    For me, a practice to do so is to compassionately observe the pain. It allows a slight distance, which gives space for conscious breathing with the pain, feel it and give it attention but not merging with it. Any pain needs to be respected and to be seen before it eventually may dissipate, and in compassionately observing it, feeling it, naming it and also the contextual surrounding, the freedom or a possible needed change in perspective or deeds may appear also. Moment by moment, and surely not always easy. Sometimes it is a matter of inner perspective with a possibility to transform it, sometimes I simply cannot do anything about the pain for the moment being. The more it is that hope may always be with those in pain to find relief and healing, and my prayers are with them, including myself also.

    2 years ago
  2. Hermann-Josef

    Once pain is there. I welcome it like an old friend that needs a place to stay for a while. Though it is not easy I welcome him with all love that is possible. Than it becomes a small dot within me. My friend knows that he is hurting and that I won‘t send him away. I myself feel like a very big being made out of love. Being able to bear anything.

    2 years ago
  3. devy

    There is both physical and mental pain. Each one gives the idea that we are alive. By living gratefully as well as looking pain as a lesson and something total from, we can look at how lucky we are compared to others and the fact that our pain will be gone sometime. Self pity solves nothing..but self compassion does a lot

    2 years ago
  4. d

    Listening to the daily meditation on this site titled Gratitude and Self-Love.

    In this moment I have compassion and for that, I am grateful

    2 years ago
  5. Don Jones

    Noticing where it is – my heel. And that heel is way down there and I (apparently) am way over here. Hmmm, there is a space and a separation. The initially pain seems like the cold – in that I become immersed in it. But there is a space, if I look for it. A separation is possible. Once the separation occurs, there is an opportunity to look deeper, feel deeper. I become grateful of awareness of what really is.

    2 years ago
  6. j

    Practice R.A.I.N meditation

    • Rest into the feeling, recognize it, become aware of how it feels in my body.

    • Accept it. This is my now, don’t fight it, don’t push it away. Invoke my mantra, “Let It Flow””. I’m at the beach, in the water, “Feel The Waves”

    • Investigate what is going on in my body. Do a body scan meditation if I can.

    • Note what is happening, Don’t ask myself why, don’t attach, Noting Practice helps me separate from the thoughts that are triggered by the pain.

    I’m grateful for the happiness this suffering will bring.

    2 years ago
  7. alara

    When I first read the question I felt overwhelmed, so had to sit with it for a long time. Response seemed all encompassing.

    So for me now, I would just sit in the question at any given moment.

    2 years ago
  8. Barb C

    I’m incredibly fortunate in that the pains I’ve experienced, whether physical or emotional, have all been ones that pass. At least, the immediate sharpness passes. The ghost remains as a reminder. A few years ago I broke my elbow and subsequently got a frozen shoulder, which required painful physical therapy. I could work through that knowing that it was pain with a purpose. Pain with no apparent purpose is harder. Always another opportunity at least to practice mindfulness, if not downright gratitude.

    2 years ago
  9. Charlie T

    I have experienced emotional and physical pain in my life and I’m sure there’s more to come. Both types have caused me to sink to the bottom of the pity pool. Feeling sorry for myself and giving up. Giving in.
    I am learning (slowly 😲) that everyone gets to suffer. It’s part of the deal. I’m not alone in this.
    Many years ago, my chiropractor/friend/teacher said “you’re just going to have to learn to play injured”.
    Strangely, this has really helped me.
    Practicing gratitude is easy when things are all good. The challenge is, can I do this when things are not so good or even extremely terrible. I guess I’ll find out.
    At times like this, I can even feel gratitude for the pain in my life. Really. It has taught me so much and it has brought me here.

    2 years ago
    1. Carol

      Charlie, Thanks for the vulnerability you share in your post. I love your chiropractor’s quote: “You’re just going to have to learn to play injured.” I so identify with its wisdom. So much of being grateful is about acceptance. What is, IS. For me acceptance is about “giving in to reality instead of giving up.” It’s been my definition of God’s will for many years. I like this quote from Sculptor Will Kautz: “Painful truth can reshape our character and make us beautiful. It has the power to chip away at our stone facades until the real person beneath our fear begins to take shape. This is the only way to become truly known and deeply LOVED. The process might be accompanied by pain but it’s also merciful because it invites us into a new life where we finally become the person we were always meant to be.”

      2 years ago
  10. dragonfly

    When I am in severe pain gratefulness goes out the window in favour of finding ways to find some release. However, overall I’m grateful for the pain because it is a powerful teacher. It taught me that I’m responsible for my health, to enjoy life whenever possible, to be compassionate and patient with others and myself, to seek to understand and to listen. It also gives me the continuous task to forgive those who treat me harshly and incompetently and with arrogance. This is the hardest lesson for me to learn and progress is slow. But I’m grateful for these incessant reminders that urge me to forgive, forgive and forgive again. I hope one day it will become a habit.

    2 years ago
  11. sunnypatti48317

    While we are in these temporary bodies, there will be suffering of some kind. Some big, some small, and plenty in between. I was gently reminded of this as I read through the Yoga Sutras somewhat recently.

    I am fortunate to not be dealing with any large pains currently, but I have before, both physical and mental. I know how hard it is to be grateful in those times, those moments, but I also know that if I can pause for just a moment and focus on my breath, I can bring myself back to my center and find some gratitude. Gratitude for the path I am on, for the lesson that the suffering is giving me, even if I don’t understand it yet. It’s all about being aware and not allowing the suffering to tear you down. It has torn me down, and I don’t downgrade anyone’s suffering out there when I say what I do. My life is very different from when I was in a constant state of suffering, and I’m grateful for where that pain has led me. I can tap into my Self and find peace rather than allowing it to take me to a place I don’t want to go.

    2 years ago
  12. EJP

    I practice grateful living in the presence of pain by holding tight to my faith and accepting the gifts which are present.

    2 years ago
  13. Sinda

    I perceive myself as connected to everyone and spend time with the souls who resonate, like those here, I download a lot of information, positive and negative, and everyone has a message from the universe, and maybe I can help someone else who downloads

    2 years ago
  14. Mary Pat

    Well, I roll with it and I am writing about my severe arthritis. It comes in waves but it can start with an ache or a sharp pain. I do my best with it, and am grateful I have times when there is no pain.
    When I do have pain, I try and notice it as an observer if I can, and then I see the ebb and flow of it. Until meditation I never noticed that.
    Now emotional pain is harder for me. And I can not truthfully say I am grateful for that most of the time. It has made me more aware of others suffering the same kind of pain, so I do include them in my prayers. Then I remember the famous words ” This too shall pass. It may pass like a large kidney stone, but it will pass.”

    2 years ago
    1. Barb C

      Oh, thank you for the laugh! That kidney stone line is a keeper.

      2 years ago
      1. Mica

        Thank you, Barb C, for inspriting* me to read more of Mary Pat’s post, and thank you, Mary Pat, for the wonderful quote, which I’ve saved now in my gratefulness doc.
        *I was going to correct ‘inspiriting’ but I decided to leave it there ☺️ 😊 😇

        2 years ago
        1. Holly in Ohio

          I love your new word, Mica! If we can be dispirited, why can’t we also be inspirited? 😊

          2 years ago
        2. Carol

          Mary Pat, I, too, love the quote!

          2 years ago
  15. c

    hmm- the rational mind replies– if our pains don’t define us, if there is more to being human than pain, then attend to the suffering, and then attend to the not suffering. Or, is to simultaneously experience pain and gratitude. It becomes a challenge to experience the sensations of gratitude in the presence of pain. Albeit attending to the latter, the not suffering, is as of yet only doable when the pain and physical reactions that signal agony, have subsided enough so that I can be aware that I am more than the pain. As to living from gratitude, my initial rational mind response is- once I can sense gratefulness then there is no difference between presence and absence of pain. hmm– as to gratitude for the experience– hmm- what capacities have arisen due to the experience of chronic pain, what did we have to work through to come to gratitude, how did the experience and desires and kindnesses bring us to where we are today., am I still afraid of experiencing pain– further consideration to the preceding comments– my thoughts shift to – approaching chronic pain such that it enhances our capacities for grateful living. How fun to consider that our capacity for gratitude is greater than our capacity for suffering.

    2 years ago
  16. Antoinette

    There is all different kinds of pain . Today I had some suffering due to some negative thoughts and story lines about to run away with me and I stoped and remembered to let go. It’s all a frame of mind or concepts we hold about ourselves that aren’t not even true .
    Today I chose gratitude to see the present moment as an opportunity rather than an obstacle! I’m so amazed at what coming home to the present moment can do change our suffering!
    What a lovely opportunity to see the vastness of life! I’m so grateful for waking up and seeing that the universe is inside- it’s everywhere. Thank you !

    2 years ago
  17. Laura

    I don’t have any experience with chronic physical pain. My heart goes out to those of you who do.
    I can speak to intense emotional pain, though. When the anger, rejection, betrayal, or whatever it is I’m feeling, is at a lull and when I’m ready, I remind myself of the many blessings I have.
    It doesn’t remove the pain but it does stop the pain from running my life rather than just being a part of my life.

    2 years ago
  18. Holly in Ohio

    I just do.
    I have chronic arthritic pain, that is sometimes not so bad, sometimes worse. As Patricia pointed out, people experience other kinds of pain, too, such as one of my friends who still grieves her grandchild. For me, I try to make the pain the background noise, as if I am listening to an old static-y radio. The pain is the static, and grateful living is the melody. Always try to follow the melody.

    2 years ago
  19. Patricia

    Whatever pain we are experiencing – chronic, emotional, recurring or the pain of being truly open to the pain of the world each day – this question is aimed straight at each one of us in its own way. Perhaps we only know gratefulness in its deepest manifestation in the presence of pain. My gratitude when life is good is real, but I know it is deep and rooted when I can be grateful even in times of pain. That is perhaps the real reason why I am practicing, practicing, practicing the discipline of gratefulness: so it is natural to me as a response to life in every circumstance.

    2 years ago
    1. Michele

      ‘so it is natural to me as a response to life in every circumstance’.- I, too, wish for this:)

      2 years ago
    2. alara

      Yes! Thank you for your words.

      2 years ago
  20. Chris Berry

    My apologies for those out there who suffer chronic pain, as this must be horrific.
    My own personal experience is that pain is a warning signal from the body saying, “enough!” This in turn makes me grateful for the pain, in that ‘the pain’ protects me from causing more permanent damage.

    2 years ago
  21. Kevin

    Well, today’s question feels like it was directed squarely at me. I’m guessing too, that a number of others on this site will feel the same way.

    As a chronic, and sometimes acute back pain sufferer, I confess that “feeling grateful” during intense pain spikes is the very last thing on my mind. When pain spikes drop to the more manageable and lower chronic pain levels, so that I function more normally, even then, I need to intentionally remind myself to be grateful for all that is good and is very much present in my life.

    Hopefully, the person who wrote today’s question is speaking from lived experience beyond the everyday aches and pains of normal living. And if so, my question in return is, how do they do it? How do they do it, beyond prayer, meditation, mindfulness training, injections, happy talk, and pills?

    2 years ago
  22. Michele

    By seeing others do it.

    2 years ago
  23. Christine

    By seeing the gift in pain.

    2 years ago

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