Why do we attribute a reason to pain and suffering?

Author Kate Bowler truly believed she had it all. She married her high school sweetheart, had a wonderful son after several years of infertility, landed her dream job in the field of academics, and published a bestselling book titled ‘Blessed’.
That same year, however, Bowler reportedly experienced pain in her stomach and after consulting several medical practitioners, she was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer at the age of 35. It was in that moment that Bowler’s belief system was completely revolutionised.

“I believed that hardships were only detours on what I was certain would be my long, long life. The gospel of success drove me to achieve, to dream big, to abandon fear. It was a mindset that served me well until it didn’t, until I was confronted with something I couldn’t manage my way out of,” she told an emotional audience.

Bowler went on to narrate how she had received responses from several people over an op-ed piece she had written about her experience with cancer, but more so, the hard-hitting questions she had thrown at her readers about the reason for suffering.
Most people tried to convince her that everything in life happened for a reason; Bowler feels that it is because we as human beings, attribute a reason to everything; we wish to live in a utopian world in which nothing is lost.

Today, five years later, she studies how people process pain, suffering and uncertainty, having written a New York Times bestseller titled ‘Everything Happens for a Reason (and other lies I’ve loved)’ and even has her own podcast called Everything Happens. Watch this emotional TEDx Talk Kate Bowler that convinces us to give up control at times because there may not necessarily be a logic behind the chaos of life.
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