Cancer, for example, is an extreme experience in that it threatens one’s physical existence. Such an intense problem is an indicator that there is much to be gained spiritually if one is willing to look past the wrappings—the pain, the anguish, the fear of death, and the regret for things not done. Experiencing cancer may simply allow one person to redirect her focus so she can stop and smell the roses, reconnect with who she really is, strip away the persona and realize that the riches she sought were inside her all along. Another may learn the power of forgiveness because the cancer serves as a powerful metaphor for how her anger has eaten away at her and destroyed the quality of her life.
Despite the place of honor many give to suffering, it doesn’t matter how much you suffer if you never look past the misery and embrace the gift it holds for you. If, instead, your suffering is your focus, it becomes what is called “useless, unnecessary suffering” and serves no purpose in your spiritual development.
Of course, if you believe you are only a human being having spiritual experiences, then nothing I say will change your mind. However, if you believe you are a spiritual being having a human experience, then you will recognize that this life experience is simply a single journey for you. Learning the lessons in life that will bring you in this human experience to a greater understanding of who you are as a spiritual being on the other side of the “veil,” is the purpose of your life journeys. So, why waste time on useless, unnecessary suffering?