Practicing Acceptance on the Path (Online)

with Paul Benson

November 7th—December 5th

Date details +
    Room: Online

    Acceptance” is a common buzzword these days.  But what exactly does it mean?  For some it carries a connotation of resignation, of passivity, of just gritting one’s teeth and bearing it.  However, a deeper look at acceptance leads to a profound exploration of the source of our suffering – and of the path to freedom.

    We suffer when we close down to what is and get caught up in an agenda of control and resistance.  The main focus of life becomes this:  “How can I manipulate my inner and outer world to experience what I want and get rid of what I don’t want?”  This approach often pits us against the world and ourselves.

    Also, as it turns out, an approach based on an agenda of control and resistance to what is just doesn’t work!  We can never achieve a life where everything goes the way we want it to, yet we aren’t willing to give up that agenda.  We end up spinning around in circles, feeling chronically frustrated and stressed.  There is an underlying and pervasive sense of dissatisfaction with ourselves and our lives.

    Acceptance” is the alternative to an agenda of control and resistance, and it’s a radical practice.  In practicing acceptance, we begin to see the limits of our ability to control other people and situations and, in fact, the limits of our control over our inner thoughts and feelings.  We can drop the struggle and open up to our lives and experiences as they are.  We can “live life on life’s terms.”

    And finally, letting go of the control agenda allows us to see clearly what we can control – which is how we choose to act in the present moment.  We discover that the practice of acceptance is inextricably interwoven with a practice of radical responsibility.  In this interplay of acceptance and responsibility we find peace.  And, isn’t this what we’ve been searching for all along?

    Please join us for this 5-week online class in which we explore the practice of acceptance and radical responsibility.  At the outset we will introduce a particular paradigm for viewing acceptance practice within a Buddhist context, and later work with specific practices such as the R.A.I.N. technique popularized by Tara Brach.  Classes will consist of brief talks, exercises and lots of room for discussion. All are welcome!

    A Zoom link for course access will be provided to registrants prior to the first class.

    *** This program is being offered at no charge. *** 

    Please contact [email protected] with any questions