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Harry Potter and the Meaning of Suffering

“Harry, suffering like this proves you are still a man! This pain is part of being human… the fact that you can feel pain like this is your greatest strength.”

Emotions

While this may seem counter intuitive, sometimes the way we know we are prospering as humans is through our ability to feel and experience emotions. These emotions can be negative. Suffering is something that no one wants to endure but it is part of the human experience. Meaning can be found through suffering. There have been times in my life where I have tried to avoid suffering and it always caught up to me, but I am glad it did.

Allow Yourself to Feel

Some people, myself included, love to dissociate from feelings of pain and sadness and just pretend like they do not exist, but doing that can often block away all feelings- not just the bad ones. In my own therapy journey, I have found that I would rather feel pain than nothing at all. Living life without pain also means living life without joy.

It may seem like there is no lesson to be learned in suffering, but there is. This Harry Potter quote reminds me of another book called Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl. In this book, he describes his experiences at a concentration camp in WWII. He talks about how the people there found purpose and meaning in the midst of unimaginable suffering. The remarkable thing about humans is that we strive for meaning and connection. That allows us to learn and grow from even the most painful experiences.

If you would like to talk more about finding meaning and purpose in the midst of suffering, please feel free to contact Amy Wine Counseling Center at 832-421-8714. We would love to accompany you on that journey.

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