Richard Rohr reminds us that “love and suffering, and especially suffering” are “universal paths” to change. Suffering is a common thread of Judaism, Christianity and Buddhism.
A Jewish teaching, from Midrash Samuel, states that “Everyone undergoes some suffering in life. Only one who can keep it from distracting him will succeed at Torah study.”
The suffering and death of Jesus is central to Christianity. Theodore Runyon said everyone suffers, thus everyone has a point of connection with Jesus: “The uniqueness of Jesus is his universality.”
Four Noble Truths of Buddhism deal with suffering: (1) suffering exists; (2) it has a cause; (3) it has an end; and (4) it has a cause to bring about its end.