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Journal Article

Choosing to Suffer: Reflections on an Enigma

Allan S. Berger
Journal of Religion and Health
Vol. 42, No. 3 (Fall, 2003), pp. 251-255
Published by: Springer
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/27511691
Page Count: 5
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Choosing to Suffer: Reflections on an Enigma
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Abstract

Most people pursue pleasure and seek to avoid pain. Some individuals, however, choose a life characterized by pain and suffering. The author describes the most common varieties of such behavior patterns: asceticism, martyrdom, penance and masochism. Critical psychodynamics are discussed and the author proposes a synthesis of the motivation underlying pain/suffering seeking behavior.

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