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The Connect

This is an election season with a lot of new twists. There are grass roots candidates vying for major positions, such as Joe Miller, the extremely articulate West Point Graduate who is running for Senator in Alaska, Christine O’Donnell, (the latest person to be branded a witch from New England) running for the Senate from Delaware. What has brought these candidates to the forefront, and others, who were not necessarily put forth by grassroots movements like the tea-party , such as Meg Whitman running for Governor of California is that sense of “You know my pain.” With candidates like O’Donnell, it’s more of a personal identification with someone who has gone through difficult financial circumstances. With Whitman, it is more something felt by leaders and owners of businesses who are keenly aware of the Great Disconnect between a very jaded Washington bureaucracy, and an increasingly distrustful business-class.

There is no question that in all walks of life, without empathy, relationships do not usually have the lasting power, the cement that makes them work. Empathy, in short, only comes from pain. This is not to say that the current caviar class who formed their power-base on the backs of the poor, pretending to care for the poor, have absolutely no idea what pain is like, but if they did… well, they have forgotten. The best way to remind them is to make them sit on the sidelines.

Many years ago I went through an ordeal which caused me an extreme amount of physical pain. In fact, the pain was so great that I had not been, up to the point, even aware that pain could be that painful. I did not know that a person could feel that much pain, and live. I suspect that there are many people in our universe who have experienced such intense pain. It leaves one with a knowledge and awareness that goes beyond anything one will ever have experienced – or known. An awareness of what? I can only say, ‘the human soul.’This brings me to my real point, which probably has very little to do with anything political, in a contemporary sense. Many years ago there was a very great prophet who did very good things, healed people, preached comforting words to them, preached disturbing words to them, raised the dead, and ultimately gave his own life in an ordeal which is by any reckoning, absolutely gruesome and horrible. Yet, I have found myself pondering, that this person, who so greatly loved humans and was himself a human, experienced a pain even greater than the forty lashes on his back with steel or ceramic balls knotted into the whip, a pain even greater than being nailed to the lumber of a heavy cross, a pain even more horrible than being exposed to die while hanging in a way that constricted breathing, forced bleeding, and exposed one to all of the cruelty of the ambient air, bugs, birds, heat and sun. It wasn’t until I went through my own experience of great pain, that I glimpsed what pain he must have felt (not that I even approached to feeling it, because, truly, I just barely sensed it in my own pain).
What pain was that? It was the pain that an incredibly deep and powerful soul feels, a soul whose depth and power is oceanic compared to the average creature. It was the pain of every incident, every tragedy, every murder, every rape, every car accident, every battering of another individual out of anger, every accidental or deliberate injury to an individual, being slowly and continually dumped upon that great soul, minute after minute, hour after hour, until all was completed.

Even if you are of a religion that doesn’t accept that this death occurred, it would be impossible to deny that anything that the Eternal had begun had somehow failed. Therefore, we must conclude that at the very least that soul bore far more pain than we can comprehend.
(I can sit back and look up and say, “Really, and truly, You know my pain. “ And many years ago the Eternal One was able to look at Abraham and impart that he, Abraham, would know to a lesser intensity, His pain; which is, no doubt, why Abraham was considered to be God’s friend.
In all things, there is an eternal, powerful, fast-flowing, yet changeless origin of all lights that answers to the empty echo of the ‘not-even-nothingness’, ‘not even Null’ of that ‘not even emptiness’ that preceded ‘ the Big Bang’ or whatever that imagined inception was, with a small, still, “I am Here,” and yes, “I know your pain.”

Copyright October 02, 2010 by John P. Schumake


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