Monday, January 7, 2013

L'earning to love. Lesson 7: Pain

L´earning to  Love

Gloria Ornelas Hall

Lesson 7: Pain

There is no pleasure without pain. Survival depends upon pain to react to danger and the pangs of growth. Just as an egg has to hatch for the birdling to emerge, the human ego has to suffer  shattering for the Light of Understanding to penetrate. But just as the qualities of pleasure differ from ‘pleasure’, ‘happiness’, ‘joy’, ‘satisfaction’ and ‘peace’, depending on the level of perception, ‘pain’ is felt at a physical level; ‘suffering’ at an emotional level; ‘resentment’ at a rational level and ‘depression’ at soul or spiritual level. Whatever we call it we recognize the difference.

In loving, we should teach our young ones to protect themselves physically from sexually-transmitted infections and unwanted pregnancy. But we should also teach them to say ‘no’ and ‘set limits’, at an emotional level; to ‘commit’ at a rational level; and to ‘be true’, at soul-level. We have to teach them to wear a condom round their hearts, to protect the intimacy that harbors Love. This inner space is where we keep our ‘D’ignity’ (from ‘igneous’) lit. This intuitive creative space is where we dialogue with our Higher Self, God, the Holy Spirit, each according to his or her religious or beliefs. To have this sacred, inner vessel shattered by disbelief, aggression, ridicule or abuse damages the capacity to receive and hold Love.. which seems to leak out and leave a painful inner emptiness and void.

This hopelessness is the new epidemic that is hitting the young. With the social, political, religious crumbling of institutions they no longer seem to have anything trustworthy to grab a hold of, when doubt pulls the floor from under their understanding. Violence has permeated into homes with lack of respect, abuse, violation and hatred. Adult disbelief in God, truth, righteousness makes it harder for them to believe in Love. No wonder they prefer anesthetizing their awareness with post-war, existential nihilism, alcohol and drugs. Relationships have made human feelings and couples dispensable and disposable, limiting sexuality to a moment’s pleasure. There is no commitment, since they seem to harden awareness from feeling any deeper. One would hope that this crisis, be the evolutionary shattering of all social imposition and external norms, that regulate, control and limit Love today, giving way to new forms of relating.

Once through hopelessness, will come re-newed openness. Survivors are already portraying what seems to be the basis of more honest relationships (though seeming, insensitive). They are bolder, truer to themselves (though challenging social mores). They seem to see themselves in others, with a holistic approach to nature and humanity that makes their loving more ‘ecological’ and integral. Their acceptance of others comes with patience and understanding. They no longer limit Love to binary ‘right’ or ‘wrong’. It seems to be more inclusive, reintegrating new patterns of social cohesiveness, creatively binding differences with more flexibility, rather than criticizing, attacking and destroying what doesn´t fit. So whether it be differences in loving between genders, religions, ages, races, social marriage or divorce, Love seems to emerge purer and stronger.

Let’s hope I´m right.


  1. Hello, teacher Glory! I’ve been reading your blog and I´m liking it a lot! Reflexive thinking is important and reading this is making me self-conscious about the effects some events that are happening in my life (good events) are causing in me. I would like to make a comment about this particular lesson: I really do believe you are right, something is going to change. We need to be aware of this ephemeral pleasure we many times seek and ask ourselves if we really want just that (I mean, when we are capable of reaching a completely different and even unimaginable level of joy, happiness, love). I am currently in a relationship and, though we have known each other for only 5 months, I can say that we are discovering how beautiful life can be when we are open and true and, of course, when we commit. It is not that easy, but if you are patient and selfless it kind of works out for the very best. I am learning so much from him and from myself. The thing is: I am encountering with what I would call “real pleasure”, something that lasts more than an hour, something that lingers. I have found that in committing and I commit because I believe in constructing something that transcends in any way. I repeat, I really do believe you are right; I´m telling you this because I know people that are passing through similar changes and, just as I am, they are becoming aware of what are the things that really matter in life and that will, actually, give some meaning to our existence.

  2. My dearest Rosalía. Your comment made my day!! Thank you so much for sharing your heart. I was deeply moved by your first encounter with "real pleasure" and your revindication of hope and belief in love. It is hard for those whose heart has been broken, early on, be it by parents' divorce or the rupture of our first true love, to believe again. We have to grow in generosity, to love them, anyway! It hurts, but overcoming pain makes us strong. Your beautiful soul shines on and grows with your loving. He is lucky, who identified your inner beauty.