Why Do Great Pain and Great Love Wake Us Up?

by | Jun 28, 2019 | Articles, Awakening, Enlightenment, Healing, Videos | 2 comments

Pain shows us the way by showing us what we are not. Love shows us the way by showing us what we ARE.

 Pain demands our attention; sometimes spectacularly so. Ultimately it drives us to ask: “Isn’t there another way?” It is a simple cudgel. The only sane response being, “how can I be in less pain?!?” 

 Such a common motivator. Sometimes so desperate and screeching! Thus it tends to kick the search into motion. How can I feel better? Less broken?

 “Broken” hurts!

 “Healed” does not.

 So… how can I go from broken… to unbroken? To… something more whole? To what is more Holy?  And so, the pathway beginning in pain becomes pointed towards the Divine. To awakening to one’s true nature. Such a powerful motivator… A very human, very ordinary path. We can all relate.

 Love demands our attention too – sometimes spectacularly so – though often in a way that is so gentle it is easy for us to miss, especially when we’ve preoccupied ourselves with screeching pain. It can catch our attention nonetheless, simply by how spectacularly different from pain it really is.

 Great love demands nothing of us. It just is. It requires nothing of us. It just is. Thus it is so very free. It naturally sees what is true, and so the searching is over. Great love contains everything meaningful and so there is no experience of lack. Thus it is full and immutably complete. It is without fear, then, making pain impossible. Attack of any kind is meaningless. Love is quiet, all powerful, and exquisitely gentle. How could these things not prove to be so spectacular as to awaken us? How could this chorus of angels not ring so beautifully that we stir from our slumber? 

 Love is, in every way, so spectacular and so opposite that… when it appears, we can literally have a hard time believing it, grasping it, or even opening to it as a possibility. It can seem preposterous that something so gentle could possibly be so all-powerful. When our ears and eyes and minds seem to be filled with screeching pain, it can seem only natural to lose sight of this. But just because one has lost sight of something doesn’t mean it is not there. Just because one has lost sight of something does not mean it is gone, or lost or inaccessible… or diminished in its truth, power, or glory in any way at all.

 An experience of great love has come? What a quiet, beautiful blessing.  How naturally, then, that all other things fall quietly, gently away. There is no learning curve here, really. Love is just love. A most extraordinary facet of love being how eternal it is, thus rendering the past meaningless, the future unnecessary, and the moment of NOW stretching infinitely in every direction.  This infinitude… that is so naturally found in the simple glance at a child. Make no mistake that this eternality… this infiniteness… can be and regularly is touched within the temporal confines of our daily world. Seek only this, and ye shall find.

 How is this so? Because this is what we ARE. Regardless of where we seem to start, and regardless of how we seem to get there, or how long it takes, pain and brokenness heal and give way to what is whole. And what is whole is seen to be without parts… it is whole.

 So, eventually healing and wholeness come to what seems broken within us. And we feel better. More whole. Ahhh!!!

 Then as Love shows us a little more, this wholeness within grows… beyond these seemingly isolated, separate, “broken” places within us, to encompass all of what we seem to be… We feel more whole. More Holy.

 And then Love show us further still: What is whole, what is ONE thing, seems to stretch well beyond us… beyond this body, beyond this seemingly separate mind with its seeming separate thoughts and well beyond those other bodies close to us. It stretches to all things. And if… all those seemingly separate things in the Universe are ONE, and WHOLE, then they must ALL be Love. “We” are not apart from this wholeness, and so “we” must be ALL of it. We cannot possibly be separate from this Allness… and so, we see…

 We cannot look anywhere without seeing Love. We discover that Love IS everything everywhere… and so we, too, must be nothing but Love

 Marvelously, it is seen this has always been true, eternally. The rest was a bad dream that had no bearing whatsoever on this infinite and eternal love.

 And so it is, ultimately, that Love always awakens us to Love.

Like to contact Jonathan, read more of his work, offer comments or suggest topics? You can email him by clicking here, or visit Thanks for reading! 

© Copyright 2018 Jonathan Van Valin


  1. godfred tong

    Your YouTube story in “The Other Side” and you essay above on “ Why Great Pain & Great Love wakes us up….is so consistent to Neal Donald Walsh ( author of Conversations w/ God) becoming homeless at 49 his Great Pain of abandonment , shame, hunger, anger & despair ..led to his awareness of the “Silent Inner Voice” that has now enabled him to write his latest book called “The God Solution”…the main theme of this book is that if each of us come to believe that “God = PURE Love” …GIVING WITHOUT ASKING FOR ANYTHING IN RETURN….

    Your life experience of a slow transition to Death of your Body “EGO” is so effective to my own final awareness that I too am not my body …I have watch many NDE stories on YouTube saying same thing but were not effective as listening to your slow motion almost NDE that I can more relate to as not having any NDE experience but have minor sleep apnea.

    Thank you for your website essays as well…well done….

    • Jonathan Van Valin

      Dear Godfred, you are welcome. I’m glad to hear this has touched you and been useful along your own journey. Keep going, my friend! Peace! – Jonathan


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