At the end of the two-part "Fisher King" episode of Criminal Minds (repeated last night), Reid speaks this quotation by Rose Kennedy:
"It has been said, 'time heals all wounds.' I do not agree. The wounds remain. In time, the mind, protecting its sanity, covers them with scar tissue and the pain lessens. But it is never gone."
This makes intuitive sense to me. I agree that wounds never "go away." However, sometimes the building of the scar tissue actually makes the wounded site stronger, not just less painful. For this to happen, one has to go through the pain of the injury, and it is the injury itself that is the indirect, but necessary, cause of the new strength. The injury isn't "gone" -- but it is re-formed, and we are better off for it.
On the other hand, writers have said that the only way to write truly is to explore the wounds, to keep the scar tissue from getting too thick while using the pain to understand something important -- not just about the self but about this world we find ourselves set down in. Perhaps the writing, the fingering of the wound for the purpose of understanding, is the writer's way of keeping sanity. (Of course, if this be so, the results are not always encouraging; writers are not known for their sanity as a general rule.)
Hmm. I have no idea where this thought is going. We know that pain in this fallen world can be a source of despair or a source of strength, depending on our response to it. So do we let scar tissue form and lessen the pain, or do we worry the wound to find what it may teach us? Or both, somehow, to find our way through?