“In America, there is education for success but no education for suffering.” Ross Douthat wrote in the New York Times today. There’s no education to bear the suffering we have or deal with the suffering of others.
We’re told we can achieve anything we set our minds to and surmount any hardship that comes our way. We filter out the misery around us, Douhat says, with the filters of political party, race, social status.
Douthat confessed that while reading a book by one of his political adversaries, a book in which the man described his experience of sickness and other hardships, he realized he never saw that dimension in him. He was only someone to argue with.
Tragic moments like the shootings in Las Vegas and the storms in Puerto Rico are temporary reminders of suffering, but we quickly forget and turn to something else.
St. Paul of the Cross saw the Passion of Jesus as a book to learn about life and how to live. It seems the Passionists have a mission today, as a recent letter of Father Joachim Rego reminded us, to offer a remedy to society today with “no education for suffering.”