Coming into contact with germs spurs an immune response, but it doesn’t do anything to make your immune system stronger. There is evidence that says exposure to allergenic foods at a young age can help prevent the development of food allergies later on. Scientists expect that a lack of early childhood exposure to infectious agents, symbiotic microorganisms, parasites, drugs, and other allergens increases a person’s susceptibility to allergic diseases by suppressing the natural development of the immune system. People that lift weights go by the saying, “no pain, no gain”, because in order to build up their muscles, they must break them down first. It is by continuously breaking down your muscles and challenging them is how you will see growth.
Just as we build up our muscles, humans must endure some pain, as this allows our emotions to become stronger, as we endure that pain. Suffering makes us more resilient, better able to tolerate hardships by giving us a deep respect for reality. If you have everything handed to you on a silver platter, then you never have to work for anything and you lose your sense of value. Thus in order to appreciate everything that life has to offer us, we have to experience some pain in our lives.
Written for Fandango’s Provocative Question #141 which asks, “Do you agree that human suffering can be beneficial and that suffering is a necessary part of the human condition? Why or why not?”