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What good can come from suffering?

Lisa Oz
Health Education

Suffering sucks. Yet, it is so much a part of our lives that Buddha claimed its inevitability as the first of his Four Noble Truths. There is no denying it: life is painful. Then again, more than anything else, how we deal with life's pain defines who we are.

According to William Somerset Maugham, "It is not true that suffering ennobles the character; happiness does that sometimes, but suffering, for the most part, makes men petty and vindictive." While we do not choose to undergo misfortune, we do decide how to react to those events. Suffering does not necessitate degeneration. Negative experiences can also trigger something positive within us. Crisis offers opportunity for change, and pain can be the catalyst for transformation, our greatest tool in the work of ego transcendence.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.