In many of his sermons as well as in his talks, the Master touches upon the subject of sorrows, shedding light upon their deep inner meaning. In those days it was especially important to enlighten the people on this subject. When suffering is understood, it is easier for people to bear it and receive the benefits it brings.
The Master said:
"Suffering is not punishment. It is given as a lesson. We give a completely different connotation to the word 'punishment.' Punishment means, 'There is a lesson to be learned in this.' If suffering comes to you, do not become disturbed. A certain benefit is hidden within it which will come at the end after you have endured. Do not force the given conditions. Remember that the blessing for which your heart and mind are longing will come on time. Be watchful not to let this blessing pass by.
"Do not avoid suffering, but profit by it. The apostle Paul said, 'The present trials cannot be compared with those great blessings which they bring.' The psalmist said, 'I feel good that I am saddened.' Through suffering, Love prepares the conditions for new joy to come. The suffering of today is a condition for future joy.
"Suffering and sorrows are Divine plows which prepare the ground so that the seeds of future virtues will be able to sprout. When someone suffers, he becomes a better and more sensitive person.
"The awakening of the consciousness does not occur mechanically, but comes through the impulses which come from suffering. The more difficulties a person encounters, the greater the possibilities are for his personal growth. The great souls had to endure great ordeals. This does not mean that these great souls knew only suffering. They also had joys so great that they are not known to the ordinary man."
The city of Sofia was desolate, dead, destroyed, burned down. Life withdrew from it. There were no people in it. It was wintertime. The sky was hanging over it dark and heavy, and no light could penetrate through it. One could see no solution coming from anywhere. In those days when the people were coming to see the Master for consolation, they could grasp the meaning of his words more readily and understood that they needed to endure to the end.
The Master told them:
"He who suffers and endures to the end is a hero. He who suffers is hero. He will become a man. Nothing will become of him who does not suffer.
"Be thankful to God when a trial comes. All tribulations are a blessing for man. After each trial, he achieves something good.
"In order to polish a stone, one needs to chip and grind it. The same is true for a human being. In order that one may awaken, polishing - suffering - is necessary.
"It is difficult for man to come to awareness. He has to be boxed into a corner in order for him to awaken. Every time the consciousness falls asleep, suffering comes to awaken it. After that comes rejuvenation, upliftment. Suffering will uplift you. Be joyous that you suffer so that you may bear fruit.
"God will transform man's tribulations into precious stones which will crown his head like a wreath. In the future, people's suffering will adorn their heads.
"When Nature puts someone in constraints, She has in mind his good and aims to awaken the hidden forces within him. All suffering, constraints and trials in a man's life aim to awaken the higher consciousness within him. When Nature imposes sorrow, we feel wrongly towards it. When a mother puts the child in the tub to bathe him, he cries and thinks that this is bad for him. The child does not understand that his mother means to do well for him.
"An army general was tried, convicted, stripped of all his rights and jailed. He was only freed after ten years. He then said, 'I now understand life. It has become clear to me that my position as a general and all other things are nonsense.' A man whose skull has been broken several times grows wiser.
"When one suffers, his way of thinking gradually becomes straight. When the thinking is straight, the consciousness awakens. Through suffering, comes a new consciousness in man. This is the meaning of suffering.
"The offerings which the living Nature gives to man are the meaningful tribulations. Within them are hidden the experiences which enable man to develop. The fruit of these tribulations are the impulses which help him to grow.
"To every man are given as many trials as are necessary for the development of his soul. These trials are not arbitrary. When I speak about them, I am referring to the mindful suffering. Man has come to his present development thanks to his hardships and trials. These are what prepare man for the Coming of Love."
"The ordinary man cannot suffer in the way a great man does. Suffering comes according to the degree of development. When you come to pass through the trials of Job, of Christ, you will attain a new concept of Life. If you do not pass through them, you will never come to grasp the secrets of Creation.
"Man has not yet reached the uppermost limits of suffering so that he may leave his human nature and become like an Angel.
"You need to pass through two conditions: the greatest sorrow and the greatest joy. After that you will come to understand the true inner meaning of Life. Finally you will come to that bliss where all things are harmonious. This cannot be explained in the human language.
"In Nature, one great Law rules: human souls develop through suffering, and through it they learn the great mysteries of Life. Every suffering is an open door through which one comes to know God. Without such sorrows, humankind would not be able to draw closer to God. This is the path on earth. The Angels draw close to God through Joy.
"The path of suffering is the one on which man walks in order to develop the Divine within himself. Through tribulations and trials, you will become humble so that you may see God. Only then can you comprehend His Greatness. You will come to realize that you are a wanderer on this earth who has come here to learn.
"A servant needs to serve a bad master in order to be able to appreciate the good one when he goes to him. Storms are needed to clear away the fog in you. Then the Sun will come to shine.
"When sorrow comes, transform it into virtue. He who has suffered a lot will become tender and virtuous. Without suffering, you can attain no tenderness or virtue. Through suffering, a man gradually changes and finally makes the choice to lead a pure and holy life."
"Each hardship is a trial which one needs to endure. When a trial comes into your life, tell yourself, 'This trial has come so that I may correct one of my faults.' When a man attains self-control, the hardship and suffering will vanish.
"The tribulations of the present times are harbingers of a new Life for which refined matter needs to be prepared. As a result of the suffering, the matter of the brain will become more and more refined. To suffer means to send down roots deep into the ground and to work. Through suffering, conflicts and contradictions, you acquire experience with the great Laws which direct Life. The contradictions which exist at present will not be repeated in the future.
"What represents the end of suffering? Mindfulness. If you become more mindful after you have suffered, you will give thanks because this suffering has been meaningful. If, after having suffered, you have not attained mindfulness, the suffering was not meaningful.
"When the ground has been cultivated - this represents suffering, a cataclysm for the worms and ants. Yet the new culture is sown in the soil through this cultivation. Human suffering is similar to this cultivation through which the new culture is sown in human souls.
"In order to cleanse your body, you use a washcloth. Through suffering the human body is cleansed. If the human body is not cleansed, the Divine Thought cannot be correctly transmitted. Through hardship, the nervous system is purified. When every nerve is purified, then man can properly receive all Divine Light and Thought. Why does suffering come? For the sole purpose of eliminating the impurities in the brain.
"The Angels understand the deeper meaning of the suffering of humankind. They know that the blessing for humankind is hidden within it.
"The great men of genius did not have the best conditions in life. Yet those who have had good conditions have achieved very little.
"The working conditions of Beethoven were very bad. Suffering forces man to begin working. It is very hard to defeat difficulties and suffering, but it needs to be done! Christ overcame them and ascended.
"One day when you complete your development, you will thank God for all the misfortunes of your life. These are where the greatest blessings have come from. Through suffering, man becomes tempered and is tested."
"It is destined that some people can only learn from their own mistakes. If one would talk to them, they would not comprehend. People like this learn on the path of suffering.
"When there is something in your life that causes you suffering, know that God is preventing you from taking a wrong turn. When a trial comes, Providence is sending it knowing about the great evii which could fo11ow. In order that you are not befallen by evil, Providence sends a smaller suffering.
"Each failure is a future success. This is to say that there is something to work for.
"Suffering represents a great Divine Science: without it, man cannot learn; it brings Knowledge.
"When trees are planted close together, they grow thin and tall; when they are planted apart at a greater distance, they grow strong and full. The same is true with people. Under difficult conditions they become idealistic; when they are placed under normal conditions, they become materialistic.
"In Nature, there exists a Law: as long as you have not cried, you cannot grow. Either you need to cry, or someone else needs to cry for you. If you cry for someone, you are helping him. People consider weeping as a weakness, but it is not. There does not exist a single being who has never wept.
"Suffering is the roots. Be glad for the roots. The branches are the joy. Be glad for the branches. There is no tree without roots. In this way, suffering and joy complement each other. However, the fruit of the tree is the Divine World.
"It is not that we want suffering, but it is a necessity. Suffering represents plowing, joys - sowing. Suffering must be transformed into joy. That which has been sown must sprout. Ordinary men suffer as well as great men, but with the difference: when an ordinary man suffers, he becomes embittered; yet the great man suffers and progresses. In all of life's trials, man must serve God alone, the One Idea alone; and if he does not give in to the temptation and trials, he will come to know himself."
"If, in spite of difficulties, man continues to walk on the path of life without stumbling, he is strong. He who is strong endures all trials. Suffering is a heavy burden which we drag upwards. It is fortunate that there are Intelligent Beings who help us. God says, 'Search for me in days of sorrow.'
Finereader (v zeleno sa otbelqzani greshni ili sumnitelni neshta)
"Through his trials and suffering, man can determine the degree of his development. If his spirit is strong, he endures. If you suffer and bear your suffering with joy, you have Love. The more a man progresses, the greater are the suffering, trials and tribulations which he meets in life. Be thankful that you have difficulties so that you may come to know your character and the strength of your belief. Man must be ready to give up everything for Love, Wisdom and Truth.
"It is utterly disagreeable to me when I see that someone suffers without Love. It is something else if you have the consciousness - the courage - to suffer for Truth. This, however, is possible only with Love.
"What would I gain if I exposed you to trials, persecutions and longings for my own sake? If, in your souls, the profound desire to come to understand God and the whole of Life appears, your suffering will be mindful: this is suffering with Love. When I meet such a man, I am ready to embrace and kiss him. If you do not suffer with Love, I will tell you, 'Brother, you cause me great sorrow.' Why? Because you suffer without Love.
"Why is it that God who is Perfect and all-Knowing has allowed these contradictions? So that He may test your love. God asks, 'Can you love Me after all suffering? If you can love Me, your love is true. But if you can love me only after I have given you the greatest bounty - this is natural.'
"God has now put people under these conditions, so that they may pass through all sieves. After He has tested them, He will admit them into His Kingdom. He will give them power, knowledge and wisdom to govern the world with.
"When a certain trial is given to a man, he can endure it. Any trial which is given to man does not exceed his strength. When suffering comes to you, put on your new clothes; but when you have endured it, take off your new clothes and put on your usual clothes and become like all other people.
"When you are sad, rise above this. Many of your troubles are illusory. In the earthly life, there will always exist disappointments. Someone is a great actor and is accustomed to being applauded. When he becomes old, people will applaud someone else. He says, 'How beautiful it was at one time.' In the future, this man will again have good conditions. Life does not consist of one day only.
"Suffering is only for a moment. It lasts for a short time. God's Anger lasts for one moment, yet His Mercy endures forever.
"Two extremes exist: too much suffering is superfluous, but to be without any suffering is the other extreme. You need to have at least a few pennies worth of suffering.
"We lack compassion for the people who suffer. We also lack compassion for the animals which we cause to suffer.
"When a man suffers, he needs to wait for the Sun to rise. As soon as the Sun rises, the suffering disappears. When you pass through a trial, think of all the beings who suffer and say, 'Many people suffer together with me.' The intelligent man stands above suffering. The human spirit is above everything. There is no power which could crush it. Therefore man must defeat suffering.
"You have endured so many things in the past, but you have forgotten.
There was a time when there were many volcanic eruptions and lava flows, and people have been buried in the ashes, in the lava. So much has man endured on earth!
"A new culture is coming. Everything which has happened will be forgotten. As long as one is ill, he thinks he will never forget about it; but as soon as the illness goes away, he forgets about it, as if it were only a dream."