Pleasure and Pain
How pleasure is followed by pain and the difference between pleasure and joy
Hello fellow Protagonists,
We want pleasure and at the same time want to avoid pain.
In reality pleasure and pain are not as separate as they seem. We don't tend to talk about the one without the other.
"This week has been a bit rough" (pain)
"You should go and treat yourself you earned it"
"Yeah your right, I have been eyeing up those new trainers" (Pleasure)
"The weather was perfect last weekend, we managed two BBQs" (pleasure)
"Make it count mate we don't get many of them in the UK"
"I wish the next few weekends will be the same though I bet the odds are thin" (pain)
Pleasure and pain are in fact connected. We cannot have one without the other. We cannot chase pleasure and avoid pain, they come as part of a package deal.
Both come from us thinking about past events.
There are a crazy number of ways companies have provided us with the opportunity to chase pleasure and we will all have our own preferred methods. Do we buy new clothes, go out for meals, take holidays, play games, watch films, read books, study porn, go for a drink, take part in sports or go to the gym?
Taking part in these activities is the fun part - the pleasurable part.
What follows is then the struggle to repeat the pleasure or to make the pleasure last indefinitely. New clothes instantly become old, meals can be gobbled up in minutes, we have to return home from a holiday, or it is kick out time at the bar.
Meaning we look to repeat that event again in the future.
The first question is why did you select your preferred method of pleasure in the first place?
Usually because we have done it before and felt it was a pleasurable experience and so wanted to repeat the situation to feel the same things again.
So pleasure is something that comes from memory, from the past looking back at a situation, rather than in the moment.
Pleasure is not found in the moment, even tough that is what we are trying to accomplish.
It is more likely the build up to an event we have experienced before and found pleasurable that is providing the pleasure at that time. Think about the excitement of packing luggage into your car before travelling to the airport, getting ready to go on a night out for a meal or a few drinks, browsing websites placing orders and waiting in anticipation for the delivery.
The second question is why do we feel the need to repeat the situation? What are we chasing, or as these questions are basically the same point, what are we running away from?
Are we afraid that we will not get that experience again? Sounds like pain to me.
Also, what happens when it is 3 days past the delivery date for our new purchase and we still have not received it? What if the day of a meal with friends comes around and they cancel it last minute? How quickly does that pleasure change?
Pleasure is therefore a result of memory, not the present moment. Memory is old and therefore not reality. Even yesterday's hunger or thirst is only an idea today, you can never truly experience it again because it has passed. The moment is dead to yesterday.
We don't need to avoid pleasure because that in itself is still part of this process of pleasure and pain, as we are avoiding pleasure to also try and avoid pain. It is more of the realisation that by inviting pleasure we are also inviting pain. That it is normal to feel this way if chasing pleasure and that if we know this and still choose to chase pleasure, at least it is with this understanding and no surprises when pain does follow.
Joy is found in the present as opposed to pleasure and pain that are found in the past, in memories.
Joy is witnessing something before we think about it. Therefore it is impossible to want more joy because as soon as we do this, what we are really after is pleasure.
We can also focus on experiencing events without feeling the need to repeat the experience in the future, this could also support us in reducing the pain aspect of this cycle.
Just like this post on spirituality, the same applies to joy and pleasure - If we start to seek it we will no obtain it. To stop trying to find joy and be joyous.
Find joy and pleasure wherever you can in whatever moment you are in and when we do experience something pleasant, show gratitude for the moment rather than seeking to repeat it.
Hope you enjoyed this post and look forward to the next one... see what I did there
GLHF (Good Luck Have Fun)
Contact me on Thedailybuff@gmail.com
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