The Eight Elements

I read something really good today from a book called “comfortable with uncertainty” by Pema Chodron when she talks about the eight elements, here is an extract:

“First, we like pleasure; we are attached to it. Conversely, we don’t like pain. Second we like and are attached to praise. We try to avoid criticism and blame. Third, we like and are attached to fame. We dislike and try to avoid disgrace. Finally, we are attached to gain, to getting what we want. We don’t like losing what we have. We might feel that somehow we should try to eradicate these feelings of pleasure and pain, gain and loss, praise and blame, fame and disgrace. A more practical approach is to get to know them intimately. See how they hook us, see how they color our perception of reality, see how they aren’t all that solid. Then the eight worldly elements become the means for growing wiser as well as kinder and more content”

The promise of Christ has never been to have a life without all these eight things, he continuously said that we need to take our cross and follow him, to give up our life, to humiliate ourselves, not in a sense of letting our self being step over, but to never react the way we would want to do it. We constantly see the two sides of live in everything that he did; open the eyes of the blind, give life to the dead, bring significance to the rejected ones. In some occasion he brought confusion, hate, bitterness, desolation, insecurity etc.In fact in order to be resurrected he went to a painful time of suffering.He never promise a fairy tale for us  to live  a happy ever life, he embraced these eight opposites , pleasure and pain, gain and loss, praise and blame, fame and disgrace to keep teaching us about our humanity, to get to know ourselves, to learn from our failures and value life, to encounter pain in order to receive healing, and may be after that being hurt again.But the true about all this as Brennan Manning says, “He loves me whether in a state of grace or disgrace, whether I live up the lofty expectations of His gospel or I don’t. He comes to me where I live–in pleasure,pain,gain, loss, praise, blame, fame and disgrace–and loves me as I am.”

My life has changed abruptly in the last month and even though people have asked so many questions, give many advices on how should I live the rest of my life or even suggested an option accordingly to their expectations on what life should be.I know that the decision I made, even though is not seen as the “Christian way” to do things, it is for me and for us, God’s purpose for our timing and moment in life.

“To affirm a person is to see the good in them that they cannot see in themselves and to repeat it in spite of appearances to the contrary”.–Brennan Manning…..Thank you for all the friends who have done this, knowing that what does not kill us, make us stronger.

…and I know this will become the means for growing wiser as well as kinder and more content.


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