The Healing Power of Acceptance

Hiking through Brainard Lake Recreation Area in the Indian Peaks Wilderness, CO – July 2021

Where there is resistance, there is suffering.

In life, there are many events that bring opportunities for learning and evolution. There are also many events that are opportunities for suffering. The two go hand in hand and in fact, you need one to have the other.

When we look at our current time of crisis, we are given many choices and opportunities for growth and learning, as well as pain and suffering.

The connecting factor between suffering and growth is resistance. When we resist change, pain, or anything unwanted, we not only get the suffering in the moment, but we get suffering in the long term. The act of resisting is what keeps us in suffering longer.

The energy behind resistance is control and force, it’s a protective mechanism that blocks a flow of energy.

What energy it blocks depends on the situation. That energy can look like a feeling, fear, thought, or reality.

Unfortunately with resistance comes the inability to heal and grow in order to move beyond suffering. It also blocks creativity and solutions, insights that we need to help us transform through dark times.

Resistance blocks a direction of energy/evolution that is always flowing through our veins, our minds and hearts, and our consciousness.

Blocking it blocks the flow of life. This is why we feel suffering. It literally feels like death, it’s turning off the hose of life.

The good thing is that with or without us, things always change. The law of impermanence states that everything in material or relative existence is impermanent. Everything changes and nothing can ever stay the same. The mind however with its beliefs systems and thoughts, tries to constrict or contract that reality and keep us frozen in time. But when we force something whether consciously or unconsciously, we create suffering.

Looking towards the opposite of resistance is acceptance – the act of allowing energy to flow as naturally as it comes.

It’s a potential and gift available to us at all times. Acceptance is allowing ourselves and others to be exactly where they are, at any time.

In the context of our current times, acceptance can allow ourselves and others to be in difference.

With more allowance comes awareness, with awareness comes compassion, then the nurturing and meeting of feelings and needs, which therefore brings about healing.

Without healing, we cannot evolve. Without healing, we can not end suffering. Without healing, we cannot find resolve. Without healing, we cannot maintain connection.

So the question I want to invite all of us to take into our hearts is: What am I resisting in the world, in others, and in myself? What can I accept? How do I want to end up at the end of a crisis/problem/argument? How do I want to feel and be during it?

We can choose connection through acceptance, through inviting authenticity, diversity, and difference to enrichen us and our lives.

We can choose connection by learning from our suffering, discomforts, and our own resistance. Through doing so, we choose healing, resolution and evolution.

Through acceptance, we choose each other. Through acceptance, we choose to come out better than ever before.

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