"A revelation of insight into the foundations of human suffering & transcendence. It not only lays out essential steps for inner freedom and joy but illuminates the way to true human potential." Paul Rademacher, author: A Spiritual Hitchhiker's Guide to the Universe

"The masterwork of a profoundly gifted healer of the soul. Dazzling, challenging, wondrously useful." Peggy Rubin, author: To Be and How To Be, Transforming Your Life Through Sacred Theatre

"Rewiring the Soul is one the best introductions to the spiritual life I've ever read. Not esoteric but real-world and practical. The implications are profound." Peter Shepherd, author: Daring To Be Yourself

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Suffering is Optional

In a weekly group that has been meeting with me for a number of years, I recently recounted the story I had heard elsewhere (I believe it was in a Wayne Dyer seminar years ago) of a man who had lost his wife of many years to a terminal illness. The day after the funeral he was seen dancing. Of course, many who saw this or heard of it were horrified. How could he do this so quickly after his beloved wife's death?  His answer? Eventually I would have recovered from her death. All I did was to decide that 'eventually' was now.

That is not a facetious answer. Rather, it is a choice. The more you are responsible for yourself, your SELF, your words, thoughts, emotions, actions, and reactions, the more you are able to consciously choose that which serves you - and your world - best. Would that old man have shown greater love for his deceased wife by grieving for months or even years? Or did he show immense love by realizing he served the energy of the global community best by bringing his energy back to a level where it did not detract from, but rather added to the already existing energy on our planet?

What happens when you see someone going through a hard time or suffering? You feel bad for them, right? How does that help them? Feeling compassion for another who is dealing with some difficult cards that life has dealt him or her is worlds removed from making yourself feel bad so that somehow, some way, the other gets better from your bad or sad feelings. If this were truly so, we could all go take classes and learn how to feel really, really and terribly bad so that the ills of the world would improve, right? As stated in the example of the man who was dancing the night after his wife's death, the choices we make about our feelings have the capacity to contribute or detract from the overall energetic frequency of the world. That includes our feelings in difficult situations. When you find yourself deciding to feel bad about something difficult that is happening to another, remember that such a decision detracts and reduces the overall energetic frequency of the world. You've heard - by now - of the concept taken from the wisdom of most of the ancient thinkers, writer, and teachers, as well as from quantum physics, that we are all one. If you can even begin to accept the mere possibility of this being so, then you will quickly understand that your personal energetic frequency, and my personal energetic frequency, and that of all the other beings in this world contribute towards our global energy. And we can all understand that raising that global energy is most definitely an undertaking worth striving for. Just think: would a global community whose overall energy were much higher than it currently is even consider tolerating things like war, hunger, child slavery, sexual exploitation, lack of water, or no access to education? Therefore it stands to reason that you could choose maintain your own personal energetic frequency in as good a place as possible. And that includes what you choose to do with it when you see suffering in others. In some ways, refraining from feeling bad in those situations, is related to what the Buddhists call compassionate detachment. One of the greatest things you can do to make the world a better place - and we can all do this - is to choose to maintain your own energetic frequency high. And that takes us to the concept of suffering being optional.

A child falls and scrapes its knee. The fright and pain cause him to cry. Mother/father comes running, hugs him, kisses the knee, and finds a cookie (and/or antiseptic cream and a band-aid). Miraculously the crying and fright stop. Part of the reason has to do with the parent's safe and enveloping arms. Part of it is the distraction of the coveted cookie. And part of it is (although with a small child there is generally nothing 'conscious' about this) a choice that is made to pay more attention to the good thing (mother/father's arms, hug, kiss, cookie), than to the bad thing (falling and scraping the knee).

Let this small and simple analogy serve to help you make good choices when you are suffering. You may not have anyone around to comfort you (think Nelson Mandela at Robben Island for 27 years), you may not be getting a cookie (think Viktor Frankl in Auschwitz during the Holocaust), but you always have a choice about how you think about what is happening to you. And therein lies freedom. It was actually Frankl who realized during his own suffering and famously stated: Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of human freedoms - to choose one's attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one's own way. 

And the Buddha said: Pain is inevitable but suffering is optional.

Also visit my new website: www.gabriellakortsch.com where you may download excerpts or read quotations from any of my books.

Books by Dr. Gabriella Kortsch:
Rewiring the Soul

Click here to download the first chapter.
To see the Table of Contents click here

Reviews From the Back Cover:

"The masterwork of a profoundly gifted healer of the soul. Dazzling, challenging, wondrously useful." Peggy Rubin, Director, Center for Sacred Theatre, Ashland, Oregon; author: To Be and How To Be, Transforming Your Life Through Sacred Theatre

"Rewiring the Soul is one the best introductions to the spiritual life I've ever read. Not esoteric but real-world & practical. The implications are profound." Peter Shepherd; Founder Trans4mind.com; author: Daring To Be Yourself 

"The human being's directory to the soul. A breakthrough for those seeking practical assistance, those of a more mystical bent & every soul awaiting discovery." Toni Petrinovich, Ph.D.; author: The Call: Awakening the Angelic Human

The Tao of Spiritual Partnership

To download the first chapter, click here
To see the Table of Contents click here

Praise for The Tao of Spiritual Partnership

“All humans seek the illusive touch of another's Soul, which opens us to the sense of belonging to something bigger than the self. Dr. Kortsch has given us the true "tao" of relationship in this brilliant exploration of emotional tapestry. We will be grateful for this illumination of spiritual partnership for generations to come."
Chris Griscom: Spiritual Leader, Author (among others) of: Ecstasy is a New Frequency

“Eloquent and comprehensive, showing how your primary love relationship may be a sacred vessel that transports you and your partner to a place of mutual healing and expansion.” 

Robert Schwartz: Author of Your Soul’s Gift: The Healing Power of the Life You Planned Before You Were Born 

The Power of Your Heart: Loving the Self 

My new book: The Power of Your Heart: Loving the Self, is just out. Click here to download an excerpt. 
Here is a brief excerpt from the Introduction:

It is your right to live a life of love. It is your right to understand that loving yourself first is not a selfish way of behavior, but one that allows you to live that life of love. However, it's highly probable that you never got the instruction manual explaining exactly how to accomplish this. Possibly your family - and it may have been a loving family - considered loving the self an act of selfishness. Or perhaps the members of your family simply didn't practice loving the self, and of course, what you didn't see - what was not shown to you - while you were growing up, meant that you just didn't learn how to apply it to yourself. The closer you are able to move towards loving yourself, the closer you will be to living a life of love - quite independently of whether you are in a love relationship or not. A life of love can be lived with or without a partnership, because a life of love implies that you know that it all begins with you by loving the self. The more clearly you understand how to love yourself, the more clearly you will see that it is very hard - if not impossible - to love others in ways that are unrelated to fulfilling any of your needs. Loving yourself first is - for so many of us - one of the hardest things we will ever learn how to do. But know this: the benefits affect you in every particle of your being - body, mind, and soul - and are greater than you will ever be able to imagine.

Note: If you are wondering why this blog is now only appearing on alternate days (excluding Sat/Sun), it is because I also post on my other blog on the others days. That other blog is The Tao of Spiritual Partnership, so named for another one of my books. Click here to visit the blog and/or to sign up for the feed.

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