Thought Bite: Resistance To Reality Results In Suffering

A few years ago, while staying at a motel in Monterey, California, I went to open the window to my room to let in the fresh sea air. The window was one of those old aluminum frame sliding windows and when I tried to pull it open, it stuck. So I pulled really hard, and suddenly the resistance broke and the window slid open fast and smashed my thumb on the side of the window frame, and it really, really hurt. I fell onto the bed and rolled from side to side consumed in pain for a several minutes.

After the pain subsided a little, I looked at the injury. The finger-nail was turning black and throbbed badly, yet there was no serious injury. So what to do? It was already 9 PM and at that time the only medical option would be to find a hospital emergency room, and I guessed doing that would keep me up all night. So, I chose try to sleep and get care if still needed in the morning.

Getting into bed, I observed my body and mind, taking stock, and found that my awareness of the pain was stronger in bed without the distraction of the senses. So here I was in bed feeling the throbbing pain, and then I noticed that I had a dread of the pain which was causing my whole body to contract and greatly increased my misery.

Over the years, I'd learned that resistance to reality causes suffering and so I decided to stop resisting the pain, to accept it fully, and really feel it. I turned my inner-eye directly into the pain, and after a few minutes something amazing happened. The fear began to dissolve, my body relaxed, and the suffering diminished. After a while, my mind became calm and I fell asleep. There was still pain, I even dreamt of pain, and I was able to sleep.

Is there someplace you're resisting reality and suffering as a result? If so, the way out of the misery may be to accept what is.


19 Dec 2021;
07:00PM - 08:00PM
Full Moon Meditation 2020