Posted by: Mike Ferruggia | February 22, 2010

The Way of Christ

The Lenten season is upon us catholics and christians and it is a time to help remind us that the way of Christ iis the way of the cross. The way of Christ is the way of the cross. This is not all doom and gloom, because it is through the cross that Christ leads us to life. The end of Christ’s life was suffering, and so we are handed a spiritual path that includes suffering, helps us understand it, and has us embrace it. All of life is not suffering; there is a lot of joy to be had mixed in. But suffering is a part of our path, our way.

In taoism, we are reminded that both will come our way and we develop the wisdom to negotiate both from a balanced perspective.

For many contemplatives and mystics, embracing suffering is part of the way. We align ourselves with the poor and suffering, and even “create” a little of our own suffering through fasting and self denial and giving when it hurts.

In both catholicism and taoism, suffering is yet another tool or opportunity to learn a lesson and move up the ladder of spiritual growth.

For me, suffering is not sent to us; it just is sometimes. What is important is how we address it. Suffering with dignity is important(that’s easy to say, I know, when you’re not in pain), but it is the true test of human character, the true way of developing true character.

Christ suffered, so many of the saints suffered, the apostles and disciples suffered. In fact, I heard a sermon recently in which Paul the disciple explicitly uses this as an argument as to why people should believe their witness accounts of the resurrection: why would they testify knowing it would only bring immense suffering unless they knew it to be true and knew that the truth trumped any imposed suffering here on earth.

So, let’s hear it for suffering! No, really, there is mystical truth in both our recognition and witness of the suffering of humanity, and our love of humanity, and in our embrace and communion with those suffering. There is truth in making our suffering an offering.

When we utter the word “Christ,” we speak a mystical truth that lives in us.



  1. It’s not too late to join the 2010 Lenten Challenge:

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