Pain clouds the brain. It clouds the brain by picking one point to hone in on. Then like a pulse, it holds its position for about 10 seconds. That feeling overtakes the other impulses of the brain until only one pain impulse is felt every 20 seconds or so. Then it becomes every 10 seconds. Fortunately, experience allows the brain to combat the pain. There are many ways that have been found to combat pain and promote a relaxed state, including breathing patterns, physical exercises, and meditation, to name a few. Here is a simple one to try: Lie down flat, close your eyes, breathe very slowly, and repeat “Jesus, Mary, Joseph” very slowly, concentrating on the names until complete calm moves the pain to the edge and eventually over the edge and gone completely. Let’s also whisper a prayer for everyone who suffers from acute or chronic pain.
By Mary Jane Berger, OSB