I am very happy to read this post. Thank you very much for posting all those helpful information.
Once I asked Bhikkhu Samahita and when he said 'when there is a body, there is pain'. I felt that quote very 'awakening' as I never thought about physical pain in that way.
I read this a while ago -
Pain Not Suffering by Bhikkhu Bodhi, Darlene Cohen, Shinzen Young and Reginald Ray.http://archive.thebuddhadharma.com/issu ... /pain.html
Shinzen Young also has CDs on working with pain.http://www.shinzen.org/
Bhikkhu Bodhi once told me that Saddha (trust, confidence or faith) is important in dealing with pain. One has to try to find a cure for one's condition but if no cure is forthcoming one has to find some meaningful activity to sustain one's interest and some methods of practice to help one cultivate one's mind and develop wholesome qualities. This is where trust or faith (saddha) is important. One can use it as an opportunity to develop several paramis: patience, equanimity, compassion and loving-kindness for others who are subject to still worse suffering than us; energy in pursuing the good despite the handicap, etc.
He also suggested to me to listen to his lectures 'In the Buddha's Words' and the Majjhima Nikaya series.
For me, I find Buddhanusati very helpful - it lifts the mind up and keeps things going. OR just to recollect what a noble disciple would do when in pain. And it is very enjoyable listening to Dhamma talks by Bhikkhu Bodhi and others. This has become my daily activity and interest..
Another method I find helpful is Metta Bhavana. I don't find that focusing on the pain very helpful as it tends to intensify the pain for me. As I try to put all the attention on pain, it gets really powerful and gigantic. (defilements tend to arise when the mind is narrow or tight) What I find helpful is open minded metta bhavana. (just being open and soft towards it, know it and be 'friendly' towards it, don't harm it etc) This is boundless metta and when the mind is boundless, if greeds/aversions arise, they do not overcome or pervade the mind. And this actually helps physical pain.
I have to do this early though - if I 'catch' it or notice the pain pretty late, then it will last longer and stronger.
Another very helpful method is what I learned from Bhikkhu Ananadajoti's lectures and attitude - anicca or perception of impermanence. It made me realise that I am not 'always' in pain. Or the pain was just really bad a few days ago but it got better a few days later. It's like a river flowing through.. sometimes it hits some rocks and sometimes it doesn't. So it's just a matter of being patient.. To go through this pain with patience, whether it takes one hour or a life time. In this way, I don't get overly excited when I am better and I don't get overly down when I am in pain.
Another very helpful thing Ven Anandajoti taught in his talk is to recollect one's wholesome deeds. Or to recollect one's good qualities. This is not to boost one's ego but to encourage oneself to do more wholesome deeds. This really bring calmness and joy, which I find helpful for both physical and mental pains.
I have also learned that I have to live with it, not fight it or to push it away. There can be very strong mana or conceit when I wanted to 'sit through pain' or biting the teeth to overcome the pain. This is an attitude that I took pain as an enemy.. And of course, I didn't win
I sincerely hope that you and others would be pain free.