It’s a question that has perplexed philosophers and thinkers for centuries: why does living come with suffering? While there may not be one definitive answer, there are a few theories that help to explain this age-old conundrum. Read on to learn more about why living comes with suffering—and what you can do to alleviate some of your own pain.
The Buddhist Viewpoint
Buddhism provides a different perspective on why living comes with suffering. According to Buddhist teachings, the root cause of suffering is desire. More specifically, it’s our attachment to the things we desire—be they material possessions, power, or even other people—that leads to suffering. This is because our attachments are often based on fleeting emotions like love, jealousy, or anger. As these emotions change over time, so too do our attachments; when our attachments are no longer met, we experience feelings of loss, grief, and pain.
In order to liberate ourselves from this cycle of attachment and suffering, Buddhists believe that we need to let go of our attachment to worldly things. This doesn’t mean giving up all your possessions and becoming a monk; rather, it means living in the present moment and accepting things as they are rather than how you want them to be. It’s a difficult way of life for sure—but one that can lead to great peace and contentment.
Everything is interconnected
In Buddhism, one of the main causes of suffering is called “dukkha.” Dukkha can be translated to “suffering,” “stress,” or “unsatisfactoriness.” It’s the idea that everything is transient and constantly changing. Because nothing is permanent, everything is conditioned and therefore impermanent. And because everything is impermanent, dukkha arises.
We’re never satisfied
Another cause of suffering according to Buddhist beliefs is that we are always grasping and craving. We are never content with what we have. We always want more and more, even if we don’t need it. And this craving leads to attachment. We become attached to things, people, and ideas. And when we can’t have them or when they change, we suffer.
We have to let go
In order for us to reduce our suffering, Buddhists believe that we need to let go of our attachment to things. This doesn’t mean that we should stop caring about people or things. Rather, it means that we should stop being attached to the idea of having them in our lives forever. Because nothing is permanent, holding on too tightly to things only causes us pain in the long run.
The Karmic Perspective
Another perspective on why living comes with suffering is the karmic perspective. This viewpoint suggests that our current circumstances are a result of our actions in past lives. According to this belief, if we’ve done bad things in our past lives, then we’ll suffer in this life as retribution for those deeds. Similarly, if we’ve done good things in past lives, then we’ll be rewarded in this life with happiness and abundance.
The Christian Perspective
Christians also believe that desire is at the root of human suffering but offer a different explanation as to why this is so. According to Christian teachings, God created humans in his image—which means that we have the capacity for love, joy, and happiness. However, due to Original Sin (the sin committed by Adam and Eve when they ate from the tree of knowledge), humans are now fallen creatures incapable of attaining true happiness in this lifetime. This estrangement from God is what causes us to experience pain and anguish; it’s only through repentance and salvation that we can find true peace and joy.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that Christians should suffer passively; rather, they should strive to follow Christ’s example and work towards making the world a better place. This includes helping those who are suffering and working to end injustice and inequality. Christians believe that ultimately it is through Christ’s sacrifice that we can find true liberation from our suffering.
The Law of Attraction
Another perspective on why living comes with suffering is the law of attraction. This viewpoint suggests that we attract what we focus on into our lives. So, if we spend our time dwelling on negative thoughts and feelings, that’s exactly what we’re going to get more of in return. Additionally, the law of attraction suggests that like attracts like. So, if we surround ourselves with pessimistic people, that’s also what we’re going to see more of in our own lives.
Other Points of View
We’re afraid of change
Another reason why we suffer is because we resist change. Change is inevitable and it’s happening all the time, whether we like it or not. But because change can be scary, we often try to hold on to the way things are even when it’s no longer serving us. When we do this,suffering arises because we’re not allowing ourselves to flow with the natural ebb and flow of life.
We’re disconnected from ourselves
Last but not least, many people suffer because they feel disconnected from themselves. They may not know who they are or what they want in life. As a result, they live their lives on autopilot – going through the motions day after day without any real sense of purpose or direction. If this sounds like you, then it’s time to start getting in touch with yourself again. Spend some time alone exploring your thoughts and feelings. Experiment with meditation or journaling as a way to connect with your innermost thoughts and emotions.
The Bottom Line
There’s no easy answer to the question of why living comes with suffering. However, understanding the various theories can help to provide some clarity and peace of mind. If you’re struggling to come to terms with your own pain and suffering, consider talking to a therapist or counselor who can help you to process your feelings and find meaning in your life.
As you can see, there are several different theories out there as to why living comes with suffering. Which one do you think makes the most sense? Or do you think there’s another explanation altogether? Let us know in the comments below!