Pain Remembered

Pain. So many thoughts on pain. So many stories about personal pain. Killing pain, pain that kills. Numbing pain, pain that numbs. Tolerating pain, accepting pain. Having the confidence to be in pain. Pain as a gift and a teacher. Pain that never goes away. So very many stories about pain while I’ve been in Edmonton. Not because Edmonton is any more pain filled than anywhere else, it just happens to be where I am right now. There’s always going to be pain where people are, where there is sentience.

Last evening there was a phone call from a congregation member. We’d said good by two years ago not expecting to meet again. I’m on a four hour leave from the emergency department. I need to get my bank business sorted and call relatives to let them know where I am. I’m due back at 8.00, he said. Err, is this really REALLY serious? Nah should be sorted in a couple of days, or so. Hopefully. We met again briefly, perhaps for the last time. One never knows. Here’s a man who does pain with great dignity. Others carry their pain with a smile. With tears. With silence.

Today I saw a cause of pain, a cause from my early life. Minds remember and bodies remember. Body and mind are not separate, thus it’s body/mind remembering. Places carry memories and photographers record those places so they, and the pain they carry, are remembered. That’s what I intended to do as an aspiring young photographer, in the early 1960. Thankfully there are photographers in this world who do that, are doing that. Right now. In Cambodia.

There is a difference though. Between being in pain and being in suffering.

Thanks to Michael for the link.

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2 thoughts on “Pain Remembered”

  1. The pictures yesterday of desperate mothers asking against hope for news of their children buried in the earthquake in Sichuan province – 12,000 dead. Who knows how many perished in the cyclone that hit Myanmar?

    A Canadian recently living in Phhom Penh has joined my group – the link was very interesting and relevant. Thank you Michael, I’ll pass it on.

    All the this reminds me, trite though it be, we are one people on one planet.

    In gassho

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