SPF: Making Suffering, Pain and Fear Work for You

You know how you look for sun block with “SPF” in it to protect you from harmful rays of the sun?  Well, there’s “SPF” for your soul…to protect you from harmful thinking.  First, let me tell you what SPF for the soul is and then how to apply it.

SPF stands for Suffering, Pain and Fear.  What these three feelings have in common is that when you are experiencing them, they bring you present in your life.  Whether it’s suffering poverty, oppression or the loss of a loved one… the physical pain of illness, a broken arm or a finger pinched in a closing door… or fear of facing down a wild animal, economic loss, the dark or even death… each of these feelings causes living in either the past or the future just too burdensome.

Whenever you are lured away from living totally in the present, living solely in the Now, what you inevitably run into is some variation of SPF.  For, you see, there is no SPF in the present.  In the present, everything is manageable and capable of being tended to.  In the present, there can only be joy and wonder at life Itself… in the pure experience of It All.   It’s when we project too far forward or languish too far back that life appears to be either overwhelmingly complex or filled with regret.

So this is how you apply SPF to your soul.  You do it by becoming aware of when you are in it.  Once you have the awareness that you have inadvertently wandered into the past or the future you use that SPF awareness to bring yourself present. You effectively use it to remind you to block out everything that is not real.  And all that is real is what you are experiencing, Now, in this instant.

I once watched a documentary of former Tibetan captives who spoke lovingly, with smiles on their faces, of how they had prayed for their abusive Chinese captors while their captors were beating them.  I found it incredible.  But I have come to understand that if you believe in the concept of Oneness…that we are all connected…and you are living totally in the moment, it is not possible to experience anything other than love and joy.  Not an easy state to achieve… but one worth aspiring to for sure.

Directions: Apply SPF to your thinking and allow it to bring you present so that you can experience the best of life without becoming damaged by the harmful rays of the past or the future.  Re-apply as needed.

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