Pain Has a Spiritual Side

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“Pain can change you, but that doesn’t mean it has to be a bad change. Take the pain and turn it into wisdom.” –Unknown

People ask me what it is that I do? I could simply say I’m a physical therapist, but that really isn’t true… I’m a healer. I heal people in pain whether physical or emotional. Pain is simply the sensation of being hurt whether physically from injury or trauma or emotionally, mentally from an heartache, sorrow, unhappiness.

I help people get to the core of what is causing the pain, restrictions, imbalances so we can begin to heal it.

In my journey of healing myself and others, I have learned one HUGE lesson, that PAIN HAS A SPIRITUAL SIDE.

Now I know automatically the atheists are like ok I’m done and moving onto the next blog. BUT this isn’t about religion or God, although I am a God-loving woman.

This is more about the relationship between your spirit, the beautiful dreams, hopes and beliefs and your ego (persona we think we need to portray).

What does it mean to have a spiritual side to pain?

Physical pain is what we feel when we bump our elbow or cut our finger, its physical, it has a purpose for why its there and can be healed with some “physical” treatment, such as ointment, stretching, strengthening, massage, or other physical aides.

The spiritual side of physical pain develops as our body’s way of saying there is something bigger that needs addressing. It starts as physical pain from tightness or overuse, or even negative thoughts (“I know this will hurt later”, “I know I will be sore”—you are manifesting your pain). However, this type of pain cannot be “fixed” with a bandaide type treatment.

Spiritual pain stays around until we acknowledge that there is a deep-rooted longing for acceptance or incompleteness with an issue. Issues of the deepest meaning and essence of your soul, issues of karma, dharma, love, connectedness, life’s purpose.

How do you recognize the pain has a spiritual component?

Listen closely to the person in pain. Questions of “why me? What’s the point?” Thoughts and words like “No one understands. This is just how my life is now.” Feelings of hopelessness, unworthiness, isolation, and fear are present.

I started to recognize the spiritual component of a client’s pain, when she would say, ”I am always going to be in pain.” After many physical therapy treatments, I saw incredible objective changes, her mobility was improved, her strength was in functional range, her muscle restrictions were minimal to none.

However, her subjective reports remained the same. I knew her back pain started around the time of her mother’s illness. She was caring for her, transporting her, being her rock, quite literally. This all took a toll on her back, and unfortunately her mother passed away, and her back pain remained.

How do you heal the spiritual side of pain?

“Getting over a painful experience is much like crossing monkey bars. You have to let go at some point in order to move forward.” –C.S Lewis

In our sessions we had recognized the toll her mother’s death had taken not only on her body, but her mind. She was very open with me about her feelings, thoughts, grief, so I found it natural to ask her, “Do you think you keep the pain to remind yourself of the care and love you gave your mother?”

She wasn’t surprised by my question, because she knew it to be true. And this is where we discussed letting go of her pain. She recognized the pain kept her close to her mother, and she feared letting go would take away the memories of love. It was also a reminder for her own mothering, it kept her calm, focused and only able to do things she really valued.

We discussed various ways she could honor her mother. Her mother had guided her to be a massage therapist, which she loved to do. She realized if she returned to work (even for a few hours at a time), how many people’s lives she would change having been through her own journey of back pain.

Letting go of pain and fear is the hardest thing a person can overcome. However, it’s the first step to healing, and it’s the only step to moving forward and living.

She had improved reports of pain level, just by recognizing and discussing the root of her pain. She even began getting back to work…she was functioning! Functioning like a person, instead of as a symptom. Her pain was no longer a badge of honor or memorial. It was outside of her. Her life had a new meaning, she lived for herself, for happiness, to heal others.

What options are there for spiritual pain?

Its not the easiest to recognize how long a person has been carrying the “pain.” Sometimes the pain goes back to many lives and is in a sense some of the karma you’ve carried with you in this life to help your soul grow and keep rising. You hold this in the form of blocked energy in your body in your chakras.

There are many techniques to clearing out your chakras: guided meditations, mantras, certain foods, and yoga poses.

As far as other lives go, have you ever said to yourself, “I must have died in a car accident/drowned/been abandoned by my lover in a previous life?” Well maybe your soul knows something your physical being doesn’t…

Past Life Regression (PLR) is also great start for this type of pain. I have read all of Dr. Brian Weiss’s books and have tried PLR myself with awesome results! Sometimes “pain” can present emotionally as anxiety, panic attacks, heart aches, even just a sense of holding back.

No matter where your journey leads you …True healing happens when we address all the components of our pain. It’s work, time and true soul searching. I faithfully know this having dealt with spiritual side of my own pain both in this life and in other lives… but that’s another post 😉