A couple weeks ago, Father Sebastian, C.P. wrote about suffering. He said: “The CPPs treasure the memory of the Sufferings of the Lord as the centerpiece of our lives. ” That post has elicited more comments than any other since the inception of our blog. Evidently, Father struck a chord with our followers.
Pico Iyer has written an opinion piece on suffering for the New York Times that you can read in it’s entirety by clicking on the link below. I think you’ll find it interesting, at least I did. I was especially struck by the following paragraph.
“As a boy, I’d learned that it’s the Latin, and maybe a Greek, word for “suffering” that gives rise to our word “passion.” Etymologically, the opposite of “suffering” is, therefore, “apathy”; the Passion of the Christ, say, is a reminder, even a proof, that suffering is something that a few high souls embrace to try to lessen the pains of others. Passion with the plight of others makes for ‘compassion.’”
I love his last statement above: “Passion with the plight of others makes for compassion.” I don’t think I would agree with Mr. Iyer that only a few high souls embrace suffering. I personally know many souls, i.e. teachers I’ve worked with, fellow Partners, family members, friends and people I read about in the news who seem to live their life with passion. Maybe I live in a bubble.
I’ll end with one more thought. It’s a quote from Robert Hutchins: “The death of democracy is not likely to be an assassination from ambush. It will be a slow extinction from apathy, indifference, and undernourishment.” – Robert M. Hutchins at BrainyQuote
What do you think?
Pico Iyer is the author, most recently, of “The Man Within My Head,” and a distinguished presidential fellow at Chapman University.