70 Suffering Quotes to Remind You That You’re Not Alone

This collection of suffering quotes will hold your hand and tell you that many people are also struggling alongside you.

One of the worst thoughts that enter our minds when we suffer is that we deserve the terrible things happening to us.

We think that we are being punished for the sins that we committed in the past. Because of this, we blame ourselves for our hardships.

We think the world is out there to get us, and it is only right if we fight our battles alone. Well, such a mindset will only give us a harder time coping with suffering.

Instead of downing ourselves with our troubles, we must widen our perspective and see that blaming ourselves will bring us nowhere.

To help you deal with all the suffering you will encounter in this world, check out the quotes we’ve compiled below.

Let’s begin.

And don’t forget to check out these sorrow quotes and hurt quotes.

Best Suffering Quotes

1. “Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls. The most massive characters are seared with scars.” – Khalil Gibran

2. “Feel your suffering, rest with it, embrace it, make love with it. Feel your suffering so deeply and thoroughly that you penetrate it, and realize its fearful foundation.” – David Deida

3. “Suffering becomes beautiful when anyone bears great calamities with cheerfulness, not through insensibility but through greatness of mind.” – Aristotle

4. “Sometimes it takes great suffering to pierce the soul and open it up to greatness.” – Jocelyn Murray

5. “It isn’t easy to accept that suffering can also be beautiful; it’s difficult. It’s something you can only understand if you dig deeply into yourself.” – Rainer W. Fassbinder

6. “Man cannot remake himself without suffering, for he is both the marble and the sculptor.” – Alexis Carrel

7. “Pain and suffering are always inevitable for a large intelligence and a deep heart.” – Fyodor Dostoyevsky

8. “Suffering is the substance of life and the root of personality, for it is only suffering that makes us persons.” – Miguel de Unamuno

9. “You must let suffering speak if you want to hear the truth.” – Cornel West

10. “The measure of a man is not how much he suffers in the test, but how he comes out at the end.” – Neal Shusterman

Famous Quotes About Suffering

11. “Although the world is full of suffering, it is also full of overcoming it.” – Helen Keller

12. “He who fears he shall suffer, already suffers what he fears.” – Michel de Montaigne

13. “When suffering happens, it forces us to confront life in a different way than we normally do.” – Philip Yancey

14. “Our past may explain why we’re suffering, but we must not use it as an excuse to stay in bondage.” – Joyce Meyer

15. “Suffering is like anything else. Live with it long enough, you learn to like the taste.” – Leigh Bardugo

16. “Nobody will protect you from your suffering. You can’t cry it away or eat it away or starve it away or walk it away or punch it away or even therapy it away. It’s just there, and you have to survive it. You have to endure it.” – Cheryl Strayed

17. “Without suffering, there’d be no compassion.” – Nicholas Sparks

18. “We shall draw from the heart of suffering itself the means of inspiration and survival.” – Winston Churchill

19. “It is here that we encounter the central theme of existentialism—to live is to suffer, to survive is to find meaning in the suffering.” – Viktor E. Frankl

20. “Suffering presents us with a challenge—to find our goals and purpose in our lives that make even the worst situation worth living through.” – Viktor E. Frankl

21. “Tell your heart that the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself. And that no heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dreams, because every second of the search is a second’s encounter with God and with eternity.” – Paulo Coelho

22. “Pain is the feeling. Suffering is the effect the pain inflicts. If one can endure pain, one can live without suffering. If one can withstand pain, one can withstand anything. If one can learn to control pain, one can learn to control oneself.” – James Frey

23. “Suffering is one of life’s great teachers.” – Bryant McGill

24. “Suffering is the positive element in this world indeed, it is the only link between this world and the positive.” – Franz Kafka

Also read: Famous Quotes, Quotes to Live By

Suffering Quotes to Reassure You That Hurting Is a Part of Life

25. “The person who risks nothing, does nothing, has nothing, is nothing. He may avoid suffering and sorrow, but he cannot learn, feel change, grow, or live.” – William Arthur Ward

26. “To suffer and to endure is the lot of humanity.” – Pope Leo XIII

27. “If there is a meaning in life at all, then there must be a meaning in suffering. Suffering is an ineradicable part of life, even as fate and death. Without suffering and death, human life cannot be complete.” – Viktor Emil Frankl

28. “Don’t look forward to the day you stop suffering, because when it comes, you’ll know you’re dead.” – Tennessee Williams

Suffering Quotes to Give Insights on Why We Undergo Pain

29. “The cause of suffering is that the unbounded self is overshadowed by the world.” – Patanjali

30. “The cause of our suffering is not what we do, but the way we perceive.” – Rodney Smith

31. “All suffering originates from craving, from attachment, from desire.” – Edgar Allan Poe

32. “All suffering is caused by ignorance. People inflict pain on others in the selfish pursuit of their own happiness or satisfaction.” – Dalai Lama

33. “Suffering begins when you mentally label a situation as bad. That causes an emotional contraction. When you let it be, without naming it, enormous power is available to you. The contraction cuts you off from that power, the power of life itself.” – Eckhart Tolle

34. “Pain is a relatively objective, physical phenomenon. Suffering is our psychological resistance to what happens.” – Dan Millman

35. “Almost all our suffering is the product of our thoughts. We spend nearly every moment of our lives lost in thought and hostage to the character of those thoughts. You can break this spell, but it takes training just like it takes training to defend yourself against a physical assault.” – Sam Harris

Also read: Feeling Down Quotes, Feeling Empty Quotes

Suffering Quotes to Show That There’s a Lesson in Every Experience

36. “Suffering is a corrective to point out a lesson which by other means we have failed to grasp, and never can it be eradicated until that lesson is learnt.” – Edward Bach

37. “Without suffering, there’s no happiness. So we shouldn’t discriminate against the mud. We have to learn how to embrace and cradle our own suffering and the suffering of the world, with a lot of tenderness.” – Thích Nhất Hạnh

38. “Without pain, there would be no suffering; without suffering, we would never learn from our mistakes. To make it right, pain and suffering is the key to all windows; without it, there is no way of life.” – Angelina Jolie

39. “I do not believe that sheer suffering teaches. If suffering alone taught, all the world would be wise since everyone suffers. To suffering must be added mourning, understanding, patience, love, openness, and the willingness to remain vulnerable.” – Anne Morrow Lindbergh

40. “Suffering is not good for the soul unless it teaches you how to stop suffering. That is its purpose.” – Jane Roberts

41. “Suffering is but another name for the teaching of experience, which is the parent of instruction and the schoolmaster of life.” – Horace

42. “Suffering is the sandpaper of our incarnation. It does its work of shaping us.” – Ram Dass

43. “Suffering is part of our training program for becoming wise.” – Ram Dass

44. “If there was no suffering, man would not know his limits, would not know himself.” – Leo Tolstoy

Meaningful Suffering Quotes to Help You Realize the Bright Side in Everything 

45. “The reward of suffering is experience.” – Harry S. Truman

46. “I know that without the suffering, the growth that I have achieved would have been impossible.” – Viktor Emil Frankl

47. “No victory without suffering.” – J. R. R. Tolkien

48. “Suffering only shows where you are attached. That is why, to those on the path, suffering is grace.” – Ram Dass

49. “Suffering has a noble purpose—the evolution of consciousness and the burning up of the ego.” – Eckhart Tolle

Suffering Quotes for People Who Want Their Agony to Disappear

50. “Attachment to being right creates suffering. When you have a choice to be right, or to be kind, choose kind and watch your suffering disappear.” – Wayne Dyer

51. “The Buddha said that suffering was caused by desire, we’d learned, and that the cessation of desire meant the cessation of suffering. When you stopped wishing things wouldn’t fall apart, you’d stop suffering when they did.” – John Green

52. “We are healed from suffering only by experiencing it to the full.” – Marcel Proust

53. “Suffering is not holding you. You are holding suffering. When you become good at the art of letting sufferings go, then you’ll come to realize how unnecessary it was for you to drag those burdens around with you.” – Osho

54. “One’s suffering disappears when one lets oneself go when one yields—even to sadness.” – Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

55. “The only way out of the labyrinth of suffering is to forgive.” – John Green

Suffering Quotes That Will Encourage You to Help Others Out of Their Misery

56. “When the suffering of another creature causes you to feel pain, do not submit to the initial desire to flee from the suffering one, but on the contrary, come closer, as close as you can to her who suffers, and try to help her.” – Leo Tolstoy

57. “Everyone suffers some injustice in life, and what better motivation than to help others not suffer in the same way.” – Bella Thorne

58. “Compassionate listening is to help the other side suffer less. If we realize that other people are the same people as we are, we are no longer angry at them.” – Thích Nhất Hạnh

59. “Have compassion for all beings, rich and poor alike. Each has their suffering. Some suffer too much, others too little.” – Lachlan Brown

Suffering Quotes From the Bible

60. “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.” – Romans 8:18

61. “More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope.” – Romans 5:3-4

62. “And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.” – Peter 5:10

63. “Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh, I am filling up what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions for the sake of His body, that is, the church.” – Colossians 1:24

More Quotes About Suffering

64. “Suffering must be the inevitable tariff exacted from spirit for residing in human form.” – Mark Frost

65. “There’s a long road of suffering ahead of you. But don’t lose courage.” – Elie Wiesel 

66. “Never stop just because you feel defeated. The journey to the other side is attainable only after great suffering.” – Santosh Kalwar

67. “Suffering has been stronger than all other teaching and has taught me to understand what your heart used to be. I have been bent and broken, but—I hope—into a better shape.” – Charles Dickens

68. “Until you have suffered much in your heart, you cannot learn humility.” – Elder Thaddeus of Vitovnica

69. “Your suffering needs to be respected. Don’t try to ignore the hurt because it is real. Just let the hurt soften you instead of hardening you. Let the hurt open you instead of closing you. Let the hurt send you looking for those who will accept you instead of hiding from those who reject you.” – Bryant McGill

70. “When you first hear that suffering is a noble truth, you might wonder what’s so noble about suffering? The Buddha was saying that if we can recognize suffering, and if we embrace it and look deeply into its roots, then we’ll be able to let go of the habits that feed it and, at the same time, find a way to happiness. Suffering has its beneficial aspects. It can be an excellent teacher.” – Thích Nhất Hạnh

Did These Quotes Inspire You to Use Your Suffering as a Catalyst for a Better Life?

Suffering brings us distress and extreme pain. It is what it is. But, just because we’re all bound to suffer at some point in our lives does not mean that we should succumb to it perpetually.

We have the power to control our lives, including using our suffering for our benefit. This is not said to advocate for toxic positivity but to let you know that we can grow from our pain. It’s true; we can always choose to see suffering as an opportunity.

It can be an opportunity to be more resilient in times of misery, better at coping, and more grateful for all the good things in life. When we suffer, we also tend to hold on to our faith, which will help us strengthen our core values and beliefs. Lastly, suffering can make us realize the beauty of the light at the end of a dark tunnel.

When you’re finding it hard to see that you’ll get through your suffering, feel free to go back to this collection to give you hope. Keep in mind that the universe challenges each of us; if others can cope, you can too. Weep as much as you need and trust that everything will be alright in the end.

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Karen Danao

Hi, I’m Karen, a content curator and writer for Quote Ambition; I’m also a marketing and advertising professional. Beyond the keyboard and the screen, I’m someone who’s out to enjoy every bit that life has to offer!

Poetry, philosophy, history, and movies are all topics I love writing about! However, my true passion is in traveling, photography, and finding common ground to which everyone from different cultures can relate.

With the many places I’ve been to, I found that love, inspiration, and happiness are some things that bring people together. No matter how different we are on the outside, I’m a true believer that our emotions don’t lie; if you dig deep into our psyche, we’re all the same inside.

This belief was further amplified when I joined Quote Ambition. Through the quotes I’ve read, collected, organized, and written about, I found that humans are resilient, creative, and compassionate.

We take from each others’ hearts and courage, and it’s through our individual experiences that we learn how to rise above our challenges and pain. In so many ways, Quote Ambition is a platform that allows people from all over the world to gain the inspiration they need anytime, anywhere!

You can find me on MuckRack and LinkedIn.