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I saw this scientific article -- Learning to Accept Discomfort Could Help You Thrive -- on overcoming pain, discomfort and negative emotions. There is one part in the article which seems incredible:

painful exposed nerve in his tooth.....the dentist touched the tooth, my colleague felt bubbles of joy

While I understand the notion of using equanimity to overcome difficulties in life, I am rather curious about its ability to overcome physical pain.

Perhaps anyone who had practised equanimity in their meditation can share their experiences? Otherwise, any insights or theories on how this might work is equally appreciated, thanks!

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  • @ChrisW thanks for the edit, need to improve on the link reference.
    – Desmon
    Commented Nov 21, 2023 at 7:53
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    I do that in case the hyperlink address changes: having the title-text of the article makes it findable.
    – ChrisW
    Commented Nov 21, 2023 at 9:31
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    answer from same post: buddhism.stackexchange.com/a/34828/19249
    – blue_ego
    Commented Nov 22, 2023 at 13:42
  • @blue_ego yes, the 2nd link is somewhat helpful. Thank you!
    – Desmon
    Commented Nov 22, 2023 at 15:56

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There is no solution to pain and disgust other than Nibbana. No matter how equanimous one is , pain seeps through in. Whether it is physical pain or mental pain , it doesn’t matter. Buddha suffered at the death bed. What is interesting is you can change the pain and disgust tolerance through meditation and application of Dhamma.

By realising form or it’s parts are not you , yours or yourself , feelings are not you , yours or yourself , perceptions are not you , yours or yourself, choices are not you , yours or yourself, consciousness is not you or yours or yourself , you are already mitigating the pain.

Suppose you don’t consider your money to be you , yours or yourself then will you regret it’s loss if it’s gone ? No. Why ? Because you are mentally prepared for that.

This largely reduces the mental trauma and pain gets diminished if you practice Anatta always. However little bit may still be felt otherwise everyone would have been recommending Anatta instead of painkillers. Painkillers are not the solution because painkillers stop working if one relies on it too often.Nibbana or the extinguishment is the only true solution to the pain and disgust.

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  • but sir this is about upeksha not nibbana
    – blue_ego
    Commented Nov 21, 2023 at 10:25
  • @blue_ego As I said practising equanimity mitigates the pain. Nibbana is the solution. Equanimity is not Nibbana. Nibbana is not equanimity. Commented Nov 21, 2023 at 10:38
  • Agree that pain should seep through regardless, what the article mentioned seems too good to be true. Yes, the perception of anatta should help in mitigating physical pain. Hopefully, someone has further insights to share, thanks!
    – Desmon
    Commented Nov 21, 2023 at 10:39

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