Author Topic: What doesn't kill you, will strengthen you  (Read 10289 times)

DSFriend

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What doesn't kill you, will strengthen you
« on: April 26, 2012, 09:41:40 AM »
I do wonder is there truth in this popular saying, "what doesn't kill you, will strengthen you" especially when it's being viewed from a karmic perspective.

I used to find comfort in this phrase... but more so recently that it's just a saying to romanticize sufferings. Well nothing wrong with putting a positive spin to our gloomy state..until I had an encounter with an acquaintance who dishes out harsh words quite often. What caught my attention was when this phrase was used to justify the aggression as a rightful and beneficial act, an act to “strengthen you”. It’s common to meet people who use aggression as a form of manipulation and control.

From the view point of karma, its not that which doesn’t kill you, strengthens you… but rather, exhausting all which has the potential to kill us is what will strengthen and free us from all harm.

What do you think? 

Positive Change

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Re: What doesn't kill you, will strengthen you
« Reply #1 on: April 27, 2012, 06:40:50 AM »
I reckon what the phrase "what doesn't kill you, makes you stronger!" is rather apt from a Dharma perspective purely because it makes us push through our comfort zones. As we tend to make excuses for ourselves thinking we cannot do this or that because it is tough or we do not know how to do it.

Hence this phrase basically gives us a kick in the butt (pardon my french!) reminding us that results come from action and sometimes the action does require effort. And if it gets tough, do not give up as with effort and going all the way comes tangible results.

Klein

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Re: What doesn't kill you, will strengthen you
« Reply #2 on: April 27, 2012, 12:03:08 PM »
If this phrase is used in the wrong context as mentioned by DSFriend to justify aggression and use to manipulate and control, then it can be very damaging.

However, this phrase is to empower us when we go through challenges in our life. My interpretation is that instead of focusing in and dwelling in the negative emotions, focus out on other matters that are more important.

My Guru always tell me to put my negative emotions aside and focus on benefiting others. I'm just too attached to the "self".  This is what I learnt and has strengthened me. My negative emotions are still there due to the challenges I face, but they don't stop me from doing things that are more constructive and important.

biggyboy

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Re: What doesn't kill you, will strengthen you
« Reply #3 on: April 28, 2012, 07:01:11 PM »
I would agree to the phrase "What doesn't kill you, will strengthen you". Example, if in a life threatening situations, it will make sense that one who survives through will become much stronger for he or she will be more experienced, become more aware and better prepared to escape or handle similar event in the future.  Hence, in positive karmic sense and with tenacity one would be free from all harms and ultimate happiness would prevail.  Hence, I would say that this phrase empowers and strengthen oneself to go through the challenges in life be it in dharma or secular to become successful.


vajraD

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Re: What doesn't kill you, will strengthen you
« Reply #4 on: April 28, 2012, 09:48:30 PM »
This phrase is a good . I like what Klien says
 “However, this phrase is to empower us when we go through challenges in our life. My interpretation is that instead of focusing in and dwelling in the negative emotions, focus out on other matters that are more important.“

Failing is part an parcel of life some people are able to pick themselves up easily and quick and some take a long time and when that happens they will remain in comfort zone thinking that without doing anything they wont fail. But every failing actually built us to become stronger

sonamdhargey

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Re: What doesn't kill you, will strengthen you
« Reply #5 on: April 29, 2012, 03:59:39 AM »
I agree and disagree. I agree if the experiences are not overwhelming and over traumatizing then the experiences will make us stronger, whenever we are faced with similar experiences in the future we are most likely able to face it with ease. However if a person experience a horrifying situation most likely they become weaker because the very experience itself can petrify and caused tremendous fear in them that will have lingering effects in their mind stream.

I've met a person who suffers from post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) she is still afraid of the night and her doors has multiple locks due to fear. She was robbed at home and other unwanted incident happened to her which has scarred her for life. It all happened at night. When night falls she will go into a very disturbing anxiety episode, fear and occasionally collapse and get stuck in that experience over and over again in her mind. Whenever she sleeps she will have bad dreams on and on and it has been happening for many years ever since the bad experience.

That experience didn't kill her but made her weaker.

Manjushri

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Re: What doesn't kill you, will strengthen you
« Reply #6 on: April 29, 2012, 05:54:00 AM »
I find some truth in the saying; what doesn't kill you will strengthen you, and it is especially true in cases where one truly feels the impact of the situation and then improves themselves so that they do not have to experience the same situation again. Or if one truly feels regretful of their actions, then they will do what they can to avoid putting themselves in the same situation again. In the sense of self-improvement, to become better, to handle a similar situation better, to avoid being and having the same result of a previous experience/situation, then this saying probably has some truth in it. In most cases, it is because you allow your mind to become stronger and better.

BUT!.. say if you were a burglar, and you keep succeeding in your breaking-ins and avoid getting caught. It will strengthen the burglar's bravery and courage to keep carrying out that act. Of course karma comes into play, but the statment would also be true for this.

So, the saying works, but again it depends on ur motivation, what you want to strengthen - yourself, your evil deeds, your malicious intents, your achievments, your attitude and goals... it's your choice.   

hope rainbow

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Re: What doesn't kill you, will strengthen you
« Reply #7 on: April 29, 2012, 07:49:37 AM »
We could read it like this:
If I survive some type of flu, then I have created anti-bodies for it and I am now immune to it.
In order to be immune, this is what had to happen:

1. I had to start the disease first,
I have watered the karmic seed to get that disease and the karma for me to get this disease ripened.

2. then throughout day and night, I endure it, its pain, its anguish,
the karma to suffer the pain of the disease ripened

3. through medicine or self-healing, I am cured of the disease
I had opened the karma for me to be healed

4. In this instance, because of the process endured in 1, 2 and 3, I have created the anti-bodies not to have the aggregated supportive of that disease again.
I have exhausted my karma to get this disease, and unless I recreate a new karmic seed for it, whatever watering will not result in me experiencing this disease again, at least with my current aggregates.

jeremyg

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Re: What doesn't kill you, will strengthen you
« Reply #8 on: April 29, 2012, 01:19:29 PM »
For me this phrase proves to you that as long as you operate outside your comfort zone, then it will make you a stronger person. Of course this applies dharmically as well, because pushing yourself purifies your bad karma quicker, so long as you are pushing yourself to benefit others or for the dharma. But of course it will make you stronger. How many times have you gone through difficulties, difficult times and come out a better stronger person, a person who can cope easier, and understands life better. Going through difficulties helps you, even though everyone tries to avoid them.

pgdharma

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Re: What doesn't kill you, will strengthen you
« Reply #9 on: April 29, 2012, 02:08:15 PM »
"What doesn't kill you, will strengthen you". From my point of view, this will make us a stronger. We shouldn't be dwelling on the negative aspect when we failed or when someone hurts us instead we should focus on more important matters. When we go through an emotional or traumatic turmoil in our life, we should not simply give up, but to take the challenges we are facing. The experience will make us a stronger person.

Aurore

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Re: What doesn't kill you, will strengthen you
« Reply #10 on: April 29, 2012, 02:39:21 PM »
I think some people uses this harsh word is because they believe you deserve what you get without saying it outright. Then this is wrong to do so. The meaning is correct, but the motivation may be wrong. Especially in bad times, one should be encouraging and be skilful with words as it can be damaging.

I personally experienced a low point in life and I thought I pulled myself out of it. During then it seems to be that way. What doesnt kill you makes you stronger. The point is it's not about whether it makes you a stronger person or not, because it may appear that it makes you stronger if we block out our emotions and be cold. Being strong is not holding one to all our unpleasant experiences we went through. Being strong is able to let go of all the emotions of anger, hatred, resentment and not being able to proceed and excel in life that came with all the bad experiences.

It is not necessary what did not kill you will strengthen you, it is really up to how much we want to make a change in our lives from then on.

buddhalovely

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Re: What doesn't kill you, will strengthen you
« Reply #11 on: May 01, 2012, 08:52:54 AM »
This phrase always begins with a strong opinion of ones mind. It represents the win of our strength that we are capable of handling more than we are made of. To push through our comfort zones, and break down the walls that sets us apart from what we can achieve. If something so brutal comes attacking if it doesn't kill you, it's not easy but we are able to arise from our depression. There is hope to ignite the light within us to move on, get back up and approach our next battle with much bravery and motivation that we can get through whatever that comes our way. In buddhism we take the ones that harm us most and treat them as our guru, we hold them dear to us and never let go. Because we know that without them we are unable to move forward and be strong human beings as we are now. We are unable to develop the compassion and kind heart without being hurt in the first place.

Q

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Re: What doesn't kill you, will strengthen you
« Reply #12 on: May 01, 2012, 07:13:16 PM »
I agree and disagree. I agree if the experiences are not overwhelming and over traumatizing then the experiences will make us stronger, whenever we are faced with similar experiences in the future we are most likely able to face it with ease. However if a person experience a horrifying situation most likely they become weaker because the very experience itself can petrify and caused tremendous fear in them that will have lingering effects in their mind stream.

I've met a person who suffers from post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) she is still afraid of the night and her doors has multiple locks due to fear. She was robbed at home and other unwanted incident happened to her which has scarred her for life. It all happened at night. When night falls she will go into a very disturbing anxiety episode, fear and occasionally collapse and get stuck in that experience over and over again in her mind. Whenever she sleeps she will have bad dreams on and on and it has been happening for many years ever since the bad experience.

That experience didn't kill her but made her weaker.

I understand what you mean, and I must agree that many people have psychological problems after a traumatic experience. However, that is in general context. When it comes to Dharma, and particularly Dharma practitioners... challenges, bad experiences etc should not affect one too much to the point of being dysfunctional. Infact, it should make one grow as we would contemplate and make sure nothing of such should happen again, and if it does we will face it with more wisdom.

I always believe how much a person suffers from a difficult situation determines how much Dharma they have ingrained and practice within themselves. Why? because the more a person suffers, the larger their sense of self is present within... and we all know Dharma teaches us to think outward, not inward. Therefore, difficult situation + Dharma wisdom and practice will strengthen a person.

triesa

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Re: What doesn't kill you, will strengthen you
« Reply #13 on: May 02, 2012, 12:15:01 AM »
I do wonder is there truth in this popular saying, "what doesn't kill you, will strengthen you" especially when it's being viewed from a karmic perspective.

I used to find comfort in this phrase... but more so recently that it's just a saying to romanticize sufferings. Well nothing wrong with putting a positive spin to our gloomy state..until I had an encounter with an acquaintance who dishes out harsh words quite often. What caught my attention was when this phrase was used to justify the aggression as a rightful and beneficial act, an act to “strengthen you”. It’s common to meet people who use aggression as a form of manipulation and control.

From the view point of karma, its not that which doesn’t kill you, strengthens you… but rather, exhausting all which has the potential to kill us is what will strengthen and free us from all harm.

What do you think?

"What doesn't kill you, will strengthen you" can have two outcomes. With understanding of the law of cause and effect, like what HopeRainbow shared,  it will strengthen oneself, but without the knowledge, one can become worse and weak like what Sonamdhargey said about his friend.

With this in mind, it is so important to have the knowledge, infact, the knowledge of 'embracing karma" in the correct way, will be the antinodes to many unpleasant incidences in our life.

What DS friend said here is true,  there are many people who use aggression as as a form of manipulation and control, and personally I have met plenty of this type of people, some dish out hard words like breathing......I "choose" to not let these hard words bother me, and just let them win. Their habituations has made them like this, and they cannot find any other better way to do it. In fact it is rather sad for them.

I will focus on the "eight versus of mind transformation" as an antidode to people like this.

Tammy

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Re: What doesn't kill you, will strengthen you
« Reply #14 on: May 02, 2012, 11:11:45 AM »
From the view point of karma, its not that which doesn’t kill you, strengthens you… but rather, exhausting all which has the potential to kill us is what will strengthen and free us from all harm.

DS Friend - I totally agree with you on this. Whatever 'sufferings' that we are going thru this lifetime, it all came from our past doing. Karma is like a boomerang, the harder you throw it out, the harder it comes back to you! We should therefore feel lucky and happy to suffer as it is 'repaying back' all the bad karma we did since beginningless time.

On the other hand, we should be aware that, enjoying ourselves in samsaric pleasures is exhausting our merits that we had accumulated. Hence dont be too happy if we are rich and able to enjoy life's many material 'pleasures' - I am sounding like a sour grape but I dont mean it that way.


Down with the BAN!!!