January 1, 2020: A New Year of Acceptance and the Art of Stopping and Starting Over Again?

Maturity, one discovers, has everything to do with the acceptance of “not knowing.” Mark Z. Danielewski

Acceptance is a cleansing breath, the kind that starts rather than stops wonder.  Hoo-nōs

Part of the art of quieting yourself is also to honor the tears that you carry. Jack Kornfield

True acceptance is more of a beingness, rather than a search.  It is non-directed openness—a “not knowing” wonderment.  Of course, the tides of consciousness continue and it is easy to find oneself in a cognitive/emotional/spiritual drift. That is when the skill of stopping and starting over again is useful, as opposed to a continual struggle grappling with the drift. The former is about letting go, the latter is about hanging on.  And that raises an issue with knowing when it is appropriate to let go versus when if might be okay to hang on.  Somehow, the art of stopping and starting over again still works.

Sometimes letting go is painful, as though it was giving up.  Sometimes it is painful because we can drift into feeling less-than and irrelevant.  And if we tear-up about such experiences, others can see weakness instead of strength, regardless of what kind of cry it is—as in a cry of helplessness or a cry of learning.

It is a New Year, again.  Acceptance and tears may not be the bogeymen we think.  In any case, it may be time to stop and start over again, which I think is the idea of honoring a New Year.  Let’s honor the past without wallowing in it and let’s start over with “beginner’s mind.”  It’s a lot less weight to carry as we learn to lift off from the gravity we’ve carried.

Here’s to a good cry, a good laugh, a good stop, a good start over.  We need it to really move forward.     

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