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With a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Nonfiction degree (Goucher College, August 2014), I am looking at a new phase in my life. From 1992 to 2009, I served as Founding Executive Director of Miriam's House, a residence for homeless women living with AIDS. I left this position when Chronic Migraine Disease overtook my ability to do my job. Now I hope that a writing career will both accommodate the migraines and give me a creative, productive outlet. And soon, September 4, I will launch my Inkshares author page in a bid to hit the 1,000 pre-order goal in 90  days. The book I want to publish is "Nowhere Else I Want to Be," a memoir of ten of my years at Miriam's House.

17 January 2012

"The Power of Now" and Pain Management: Love, Joy, Peace

Sixth in a series

"And when I base my pain management on my spiritual life and in God, the coming together of physical practice, mental ease and spiritual depth results in much more than just managing of pain: it results in a better quality of life, and, I pray, makes me a better person."

That is a sentence from a previous post.  I repeat it now because it's a nice segue to today's post.  A few days after writing that sentence, I found myself commenting, on the blog of a friend, that I may not be working or accomplishing much because of the almost-constant migraine pain, but I can still strive to become a better person.

My spiritual life has always been about making me a more loving, joyful and peaceful person, regardless of my life circumstance.  Why shouldn't pain management be about that, too?  It's not that much of a leap, especially with Eckhart Tolle's help.

The best way I can think to explain what I mean is by a kind of rough syllogism:

  1. Love and joy are "inseparable from your natural state of inner connectedness with Being."  ("The Power of Now", Tolle, page 29)
  2. Pain management that is based in spirituality brings me to my inner connectedness with Being.
  3. Therefore, pain management is about love and joy.

And that is how I become a better person through managing my pain: I become more loving, more joyful as I begin to feel that I am inseparable from Being, from the Divine.

Notice that none of this is about thinking.  We cannot think our way into connectedness with God.  Tolle says that love, joy and peace arise from beyond the mind (page 29), and so the mind has no power to bring us to that state of inner connectedness to God. 

No more can I think my way into pain management.  My mind wants to wail about missing that party or fume about yet another day stuck indoors with the blindfold on.  It's human to think like this, but that excuse quickly wears thin as pain perpetuates itself.  Maybe it's human, and understandable, but it's also counter-productive.

Speaking of pain, this migraine is bothering me.  It's time to practice what I preach.  I'll continue these thoughts in my next post.

I would love to hear from you.  Please use the Comment link below, or email me at carold.marsh@gmail.com .


1 comment:

  1. I think it is great that you can use your spiritual life as a way of dealing with your chronic pain. I have suffered from chronic pain for many years and I have found that meditation has done a lot of good for relieving my pain. I have also found a lot of pain management help at http://onlineceucredit.com/edu/social-work-ceus-pain. I recommend checking it out because it has a lot of good information.

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