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A little advice: regardless of what arises inside of you or outside of you, find a gaze of acceptance & compassion to be with it. Dance with it, be resilient with it, trust yourself and trust the sacred within you with it. It is all part you, part of the creation that is your experience of life.

Accept, don't resist, your inner experience and let your internal witness hold you. To accept is to take the time to see it for what it is and receive the information that provides. This is a powerful act. It requires presence. Cultivate an inner witness that's kind and strong enough to hold you. If you don't know how... ask how. Be willing to discover and to learn.

Remember that acceptance and compassion are not the same as being "nice." Sometimes even an act of kindness doesn't come off as nice.

Acceptance & compassion foster presence.

Presence will make it possible to confront what is within you. It really makes things so much easier. It takes you out of the stories of the past and the patterns of behavior that come from those stories. Presence is liberating and is possible for everyone. It costs nothing but commitment and practice. It begins with the practice of quieting the mind and being in your body, your heart. You can begin learning how to be present by noticing and feeling the sensations in your body. Start by luxuriating in what feels good. Staying aware of and feeling good feelings can be more challenging that you would think. That’s because most of us have more practice feeling distress.

Many of us live stories in which there is an enemy or many enemies. We are constantly at war with ourselves and something in our lives. Inherent in that is fear and powerlessness. The trouble is that fear & powerlessness are very good at perpetuating themselves. We are at war with so many things; with food, with our longings, with the way we look, with our ex, with our expenses, with the people we love, with people who hurt us, with the media, with particular race or religion, with a political party, with another country...etc. We are at war with these things because of how they make us feel. So really we are at war in our state of being, individually & collectively.

The trouble is we are part of the other, we are One. So there are no true winners when there is war. Let's say you're at war with food or your weight. You may lose weight, you may find a way to escape the "bad" but the state of your being is unlikely to change. You will continue to feel as before, food & weight will continue to be an enemy and cause stress. But if you meet these with acceptance, compassion & love your state of being will change, your relationship to them will change and their impact on you will change. You will find freedom and be on the path of wholeness. Let me be clear that I am not saying accept it and don’t take action to change it. I’m suggesting the opposite.

Presence and compassion catalyze action.

Accept your reality, accept how you feel, meet it, yourself, with love & care. Invest in your growth, invest in wholeness. That is a way open to all of us and with which we create global beauty. You can see this in every person who has taken a stand for peace and goodness, like Mother Teresa, Martin Luther King, the Dali Lama & the many many others like them who have gone unknown.

To compassionately accept what it is, doesn't mean leave at as it is. Acceptance is the beginning of change and compassion is the tone and quality of how the change is made.

The truth is that we are all part of the ecosystem of life. We affect each other (not just the people but the natural world around us) and nothing has proven that to be true more than the recent world health crisis. Ecosystems are always working to achieve balance and balance is in constant movement. By engaging our lives from the perspective of presence and inclusiveness we are simultaneously autonomous and a part of. One fundamental thing all life seeks is to maintain its well being. When we approach life from a place of collaboration rather than competition we are carried by the force of this fundamental truth. It supports us and guides us. This the place of co-creative partnership.

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