The Pain-Body

by Darlene Barriere
(Kamloops, British Columbia, Canada)

Our body and mind betray us

Our body and mind betray us

Each of us has a pain-body. Some of us carry a heavier pain-body than others, depending on what we experienced in our past, including our childhood. It is when we identify with our pain-body as though it is who we are that we experience even more pain.

When we do not live in the present, that is to say we are constantly either thinking about the past or trying to get fulfillment by constantly waiting for the future to arrive, every emotional experience we have lives on in our bodies and our minds. These emotional experiences combine with the emotional experiences we remember from our past, which serves to further fed the pain-body.

I had a light bulb moment recently when I learned that the body and the mind do not know the difference between a thought or an actual situation. Imagine that! As intelligent as our body is, it will react to a worrisome thought in the same way as it would if it were in a dangerous situation. If we think fearful thoughts, if we live our lives thinking about past traumatic or terrorizing events, our body will respond as though we were in actual danger. The stomach will contract. Breathing becomes laboured. Heart rate increases. We tense our muscles. We tighten our jaw. There is a sudden build-up of energy that has no outlet. Our body and mind absorbs the reactions—the excess energy—which brings about even more anxious thought, which in turn brings on more physical reactions from the body.

The answer is to live fully in the present, in the Now. It is being aware of the fact that your thoughts are present in your mind, and then watching those thoughts as they unfold. It is allowing yourself to feel the emotions that grip you at the time, and then being the watcher of those emotions, paying close attention to how your body is reacting to them. This is is the start of awakening.

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