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A Letter For Those Who Suffer

1805 words - 7 pages

It ceases to amaze me of how the world can be seen as beautiful in the amidst of daily killing sprees, religious and political corruption, starvation, homelessness and greed. Within society it seems as though the concept of goodness relies on one’s ability to fill his own belly at the expense of someone else. This is our reality. A reality in which for many is an extremely difficult concept to grasp. And in attempting to do so one may feel like the target of eternal suffering. How can the divine(s), God create us out of love, yet let us suffer? How can one find happiness if one must forever endure suffering? A wise philosopher, Lao Tzu once stated “ Under heaven all can see beauty as beauty only because there is ugliness.” The ability to define and grasp the concept of happiness relies solely on ones’ perception of suffering; a perception often emphasized inversely within various religions. Abrahamic religions (Judaism and Christianity) and Buddhism play a critical role in defining an individuals perception of suffering on the road to happiness.
Happiness is the savior to humanity and can be best taught when one endures suffering. Often we underestimate the intimate relationship that happiness and suffering have. According to Robert Gibbs, suffering “demands responses, and those who receive that demand as calling for an interpretation, for understanding, for a search for meaning, will turn their minds to pain endured by others.” (Gibbs 1) When someone suffer from the diagnosis of a terminal disease, their immunes system responds and doctors will reflect on their labs result for the development of the disease to find meaning to this people life. The one who suffers is forces to interpret, define and understand what this diagnosis will change their future. If she define her suffering as the means for a greater good, her suffering will not be in vain and her happiness despite of her physical condition will be near. Overall, how one perceives happiness will depend on their perception of suffering. Religion plays a vital role in defining this reality of suffering. Within reality, the Abrahamic religions (Judaism, Christianity and Islam) have the highest membership rates in the world. Their perception of the suffering has impacted our world tremendously in the name of sin, growth and freewill. Consequently, this essay will discuss Judaism and Christianity perception and reactions to suffering. And to create a more diverse explanation of suffering, Buddhism will also be discussed.
Suffering in the Torah, the religious text of Judaism, is emphasized as punishment from God for the past sins an individual has committed. The Tanakh, a section of the Torah represented in the first five book of the Christian Bible, reveals the story of Moses; a story to which relays the scriptures vital for the framework of traditional Jewish beliefs. Enslaved by the Pharaoh, the Jews were led to freedom by Moses under the direction of God. In the land of Mount Sinai,...

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