Pain-2-Power is a philosophy for your life and for life, in general. Its basic tenet is that all suffering and adversity in life can be turned to the good because the human story, both individually and as a species, is inherently coded for comebacks. Wandering the desert and arriving at the Promised Land is a metaphor for every human trial. Resurrection is the story of mankind.
Your story, when marked by setbacks, is actually a story-in-waiting of overcoming those setbacks—of turning pain to power, of using the suffering that is inevitably part of every human life to find the way out of suffering. Visiting the depths of despair is the preface, always, to ascending to the mountaintop. We just need to believe those next chapters are ahead, to expect the pages to be written, to be vigilant as the words and sentences comprising our resurrection appear. We can never forget that each and every one of us is an alchemist turning lead to gold.
Once you learn to expect pain as the prelude to power and to be vigilant for signposts along the way, every challenge—even the biggest ones—come encoded with new and positive possibilities.
Let’s take a tough example. The Covid pandemic has killed millions. It has brought suffering to hundreds of millions more. What possible silver lining could there be to that? What good could be encoded in the viral genome of a global killer? The answer is: Something, and probably something big. Here are just a few possibilities:
- Will accelerated research, development and distribution of mRNA based vaccines lead to a vaccine for cancer?
- Will we learn that people who contracted Covid and survived it actually find themselves immune to future illnesses?
- Can we ultimately identify a leader for the nation whose response to the Covid epidemic distinguished him or her to such an extent that his or her ascent to the Presidency became inevitable?
These are just a few of the possible ways victory could be forged from apparent defeats at the “hand” of Covid. I am not saying that any one of them would take away the suffering endured by those who lost loved ones or who lost businesses or who lost their good health. I am simply urging—in confronting Covid and confronting everything we must—that we keep one eye open for hope and leaps forward. In the desert, expect the Promised Land. In every metaphorical death, expect resurrection. Look for it. Work for it. Manifest it.
Here’s a really simple metaphor. I just thought of it. When I was a kid, I had a few of those cars that you had to pull back against the surface of a table or on the floor, in order to wind a spring inside that then, when the car was released, rocketed forward. That’s how the world works. It’s how human beings work. And it’s how you work.
Dr. Keith Ablow
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