Why Conscious Exploration Entails Suffering

"The magnitude of the benefits of spiritual and personal development are equal to the suffering it causes."

This is the beauty of personal development. You become free to choose the degree of your happiness. If you are not yet fully present and content with existence, you are not enlightened yet. Than you know you have not yet gone through enough spiritual suffering. The suffering on the spiritual path usually comes up during meditation as distractions in the form of memories of your life.

In meditation you want to still the mind and turn awareness in on itself.

Step by step you are discovering that non of those things were ever actually you. You continuously detach from the identification with the illusory self. That means to dis-identify with what you previously thought was you. That is painful as it can feel like you are step by step dying. But at the end of that process or in an instant you will realize your true self and die into the whole of existence.

That process has an in-flexion point, where the emptiness inside turns into all of existence. A realization will happen where you see that you are in fact larger than the entire universe. But until then, the spiritual journey can feel painful, because it is a process of continually letting go of false believes, which make up who you currently think you are.

How can you enjoy this process of self discovery, if it entails so much suffering? 
Because suffering is the byproduct of discovering your own delusions, that are actually the root cause of your suffering. A deep interest in the truth will over-shine the falling away of attachments to the illusory self. Pulling out the illusions reveals their full depth. It will reveal to you how you are pushed around by their emotional force.

But, because delusion is what the false self is at it's core, discovering those very deep truth is a painful process of self-transformation. The self wants to remain as it is. You right there, you want to maintain the status quo of who you are. Revealing the delusions in yourself is like cutting away parts of yourself, with the intention to discover that you never were those parts to begin with. Or rather that you never were those parts exclusively. Finally you will come to understand that your illusory self is part of the mind of god, which is the unchanging ever present emptiness that you are.