Accepting what is, made meditation practice a monumental beyond reach aim for me for many years. There were things inside that took time (decades) and effort (big sustained) to learn how to accept. This experience isn't past tense. Yet drop by drop, as Rick Hanson quotes, I am gaining ground.
I'd rather not have to accept reality at times. It's a tall order. Lots of little moments of going back to peace inside helps interrupt the intensity of accepting what feels hard in the moment.
I've found that even from time to time, if not in a sustained way, meeting and practicing with others has helped tremendously in keeping my practice of accepting what is, alive and growing.
Accepting What I Cannot Change
I find myself in January, gratefully with joy for a new year! and experiencing moments of unnerving jitters.
For the jitters I'm sharing some words from a couple of people that I respect.
If you have found inspiration for accepting moments that you cannot change, please share them. I'd love to hear from you.
This reflection below of Lao Tzu, has helped me at various times of tremendous mud:
“Do you have the patience to wait
Till your mud settles and the water is clear?
Can you remain unmoving
Till the right action arises by itself?”
My faith grows a tiny bit each time I remember how many times the mud has settled. How my thoughts and actions come from a different place when the mud of suffering settles.
Even moments of feeling settled here and there start to make a new path forward.
Linda Graham, author of Bouncing Back, teacher and a mentor of mine in positive neuroplasticity, recommends Jack Kornfield's newsletter. I also recommend hers!
Here's an excerpt from his post on Oct. 20, 2016, Dharma and Politics:
"Whatever our political perspective, we will encounter troubling images and feel anger, frustration, even outrage and impatience. If we stop and breathe and meditate, we will feel underneath these reactions our fear and under this our connectedness and caring. If our actions come from this deep sense of caring, they will bring greater benefit and greater peace."
From Rick Hanson's Just One Thing blog: Love What's Real
My work is based on his practical, integrative approach to positive neuroplasticity.
"Last, what's real, what's true in your country, and world? The basics are usually pretty easy to see. Who's getting richer and who's getting poorer? Is the ice cap melting at the North Pole?
There's a widespread idea these days that we can't really know what's happening with really big things like national governments, or even if we could know it doesn't much matter. I think that's crazy.
Truth is truth at any scale, and if truth matters at the scale of whether a child is actually learning to read or a plane is actually safe to fly, then it matters at the scale of what happens when humans dump 100 million tons of carbon dioxide into the air each day or whether a foreign government hacked and manipulated a U.S. presidential election.
We are intimately affected by real events in the halls of power both here at home and on the other side of the world. When someone tells you, "Don't worry, you don't need to know the truth, you don't need to worry about that" . . . you usually do. Same with politics: any person, party, or government that says facts don't matter, or makes it harder to find them, or floods the commons with fake facts to crowd out real ones is pursuing selfish gains by undermining the foundations of a stable, just, and democratic society for everyone else.
Sometimes you can't stop them from doing this - but they can never stop you from knowing what is real, and what matters."