My wife’s nephew has a serious physical disability, and he recently had a medical crisis. People said things like, “It’s so sad that he has to suffer.”

But here’s the thing — I have never known him to suffer. Simply stated, he does not interpret any aspect of his life as suffering. He is a joyful person, a joyful spirit, and his life is simply his life, and living is his joy. Debra sees this in him, and she connects with him in his truth — love and joy are their common experience.

Others are so committed to their belief in suffering that they can’t connect with the truth of who he is. Looking at him with long faces and sad sympathy, they never see the love and joy he radiates.

Debra’s nephew is a powerful example that love and joy are real, and suffering is an illusion.