The name of this blog, Rainbow Juice, is intentional.
The rainbow signifies unity from diversity. It is holistic. The arch suggests the idea of looking at the over-arching concepts: the big picture. To create a rainbow requires air, fire (the sun) and water (raindrops) and us to see it from the earth.
Juice suggests an extract; hence rainbow juice is extracting the elements from the rainbow, translating them and making them accessible to us. Juice also refreshes us and here it symbolises our nutritional quest for understanding, compassion and enlightenment.

Wednesday 6 April 2022

Getting Comfortable With Discomfort

The pandemic did it, didn’t it? Left us in a state of discomfort. Whether we agreed with the restrictions or did not, many of us felt a degree of discomfort.

We are going to feel discomfort moreso.

We may as well get comfortable with the feeling of discomfort.

The consequences of our (largely westernised) profligate lifestyles over the past few millennia (intensified since the Industrial Revolution) have started to become manifest.

We may not all be aware of the consequences, but they are present. More and more, these uncomfortable realisations are reaching a wider consciousness.

It’s like a ripple. An uncomfortable feeling may start out at some point in our cultural pond; but, because we are not near the source, we do not feel it. However, ripples have a habit of spreading, and eventually we will notice the ripples of discomfort no matter where we are in the pond.

Noticing the ripple, and feeling its effect upon us, is just the first step. Buddhism calls this the First Noble Truth.

The First Noble Truth (of four) is often translated as suffering in the English language. The Pali word dukkha has a larger meaning and includes such notions as uncomfortableness, unsatisfactoriness, unease, stress, or – discomfort.

If we are going to navigate through the social/environmental collapse that is upon is, then noticing the discomfort is the first thing we must get comfortable with.

It is worth looking more closely at the First Noble Truth. You could be forgiven to think that the word noble here refers to the truth. However, that too, is a poor understanding of the original Pali phrase.

In Pali the word ariya, translated as noble, refers not to the truths themselves, but to the knower of the truths. Noble has an etymological root in the word gno – meaning to know.

Thus, the original meaning of the First Noble Truth could be said to be: a person who understands, and has stepped into knowledge of, the truth of discomfort.

When we step into that knowledge, we begin to become comfortable in our discomfort. It is a start – there are three more Noble Truths to navigate.

So, let us not look out on the world with worry, despair, anxiety, depression, or anger. Let us face our discomfort. Let us explore it. What does it mean to be uncomfortable? What does discomfort truly feel like.

Only then will our discomfort become a noble truth.

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