To Love and To Suffer

How is it that there can be a reckoning of the paradoxical questions that have plagued humanity for all of time?  Questions of heartache and hopelessness, inequity and scarcity, disease and illness as they co-exist with questions of health and wellness, equitability and fruition, of faith, of hope, of love – questions of dying and of death that reflect questions of life and of living?  Is it possible to simultaneously acknowledge the known and the knowing that accompanies these questions, and alas to acknowledge the very essence of our humanity at some level of transcendence? 

Is there somewhere, perhaps deep within the physical realms of the embodied brain and deep within the metaphysical realms of universality, where the ordinary meets the extra-ordinary in surrender?  A space that, albeit beckoning infinite complexity in its attainability only by faith, was definable by the neurobiology of the embodied brain (Newberg, 2019) and understandable as a process of Self making (Badenoch, 2018)? 

And what if it is not?

What if the answers were in the questions, residing in our inherent systems of seeking and caring (Panksepp and Biven, 2012 cited in Badenoch, 2018); a given-ness that can be found in the encouraging embrace of an Other moving together in surrender to whatever is alive within – no matter how ordinary or extra-ordinary it is (Rohr, 2019)?

Though seemingly elusive by nature, I have come to fathom that reckoning the paradoxical questions of humanity is a process that occurs within the spaciousness of contemplative surrender, something that is rooted in the felt sense of a caring Other.  This is a felt sense that allows an inherent given-ness where the insentient meets the sentient, where the objective meets the subjective, where the seen meets the Seer, and where the self meets the Self; an enigmatic spaciousness where streams of energy and information, past, present, and future merge in the formation of who we are in the Divine Christ.  This certain spaciousness and inherent given-ness, allows whatever questions maybe within the entirety of my physical-mental being is a gentle process of learning to value the pause between stimuli and response, a compassionate process of awareness: a paying attention to moment-to-moment emerging sensations, perceptions, and interpretations just as they are; an appreciation that meets the self’s seeking with a caring confluence of the (often incongruous) implicit emotive momentums that underscore our humanness (Badenoch, 2018); an unfolding coherence that instils sense of differentiation and integration (Siegel, 2012).  And, albeit while the paradoxical questions of humanity rise time and time again, there is a certain essence that lingers on from the spaciousness of contemplative surrender that brings about transformational volition toward incarnate living within the depths of all transcendental truths – whatever they may be.


Badenoch, B. (2018). The heart of trauma: Healing the embodied brain in the context of relationships. W. W. Norton & Company.

Center for Action and Contemplation. (2019, March 9). Love Evolves. Another Name for Every Thing [Audio podcast].

Newberg, A. (2019). Research Questions. Andrew Newberg.

Siegel, D. J. (2010). The mindful therapist: A clinician’s guide to Mindsight and neural integration. W. W. Norton & Company.