THE BIRTH OF THE LION -PART II- SUFFERING
Abridged Version (45 % of the integral text)
Ramana Maharshi’s central teaching is this: “The identification with the I-thought is the source of suffering.” To me, this is one of the clearest statements there is.
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What is suffering?
Suffering is an illusion.
Then does humanity suffer simply from an illusion?
Yes. The problem is not suffering itself; the problem is that humanity is not fully aware of it. When every activity of the mind that immediately creates separation and thereby suffering happens in total awareness of yourself, the illusion is exposed and suffering is finished. In other words, when the I-thought appears and you become that thought, it is in that moment suffering is created. But when the I-thought happens in total, conscious awareness, I do not believe you will be interested in following this misidentification.
Suffering does not make itself openly known as suffering. Most people believe that a disease of the body or the psyche creates suffering. When they are able to function again, suffering is supposed to be finished. There are all kinds of techniques and ways to smooth out suffering, to search for pleasure and do something to keep suffering from becoming obvious.
I like Papaji’s definition of suffering best: “Suffering is the relationship with the I-thought.”
There are continuously arising thoughts attached to the letter I, thoughts of which you are not aware but which you become again and again as they arise. These thoughts become what you are, and then feelings and sensations ensue. But are you a thought?