Radical acceptance and October snow

Deer on our road yesterday

Good morning, dear readers. Just got inside after scraping off eight or ten inches of crusty snow from the car. While I was out there in the dark, I warmed up Barry’s car before he left for work. It’s 28 degrees, give or take.

So early in the year for our first significant snowfall. We’re used to October snows but they don’t usually stay on the ground.

More 2020 fun, right?

Wider view

Of course when you’re scraping off the car at 7 a.m. there’s bitching going on in the head. Thoughts mutter things like “Really? You gotta be kidding!”

I let all these thoughts continue for awhile, kind of internally grinning at the way parts of us carry on about things that make us work, worry or woe.

Then something else (you might call it grace or witness or Spirit or heart or God) allowed a big-picture view. An eagle-eye glimpse from high in the sky. Radical acceptance poured over the whole scene like soothing honey for the soul.

This too is OK. This too is allowed to be. This too is as it is.

Looking up

Radical acceptance: such a radical concept. One at which I stumble daily, sometimes hourly, sometimes by the minute. It’s more of a practice than a success or failure.

Just letting everything be as it is.

It’s actually the cornerstone of meditation, isn’t it?

Let the bitch-thoughts come. Let the grief rise. Let the nervous system flounder toward safety.

Let the whole world fall apart and then watch it come together again in a brand new way.

Snow falls off branches

Whenever I suffer something seems to be happening: I am not accepting what is appearing. Instead I fight, fuss, fume, find fault, fiddle, falter in faith.

There is nothing wrong with any of those “f” activities just described. They can be radically accepted as well.

Still color

Perhaps we think that if we don’t fight–if we radically accept–that which we deem wrong and hurtful and uncompassionate will never change. Perhaps we think our acceptance condones the world’s pain.

I have thought this, too. But I’ve come to discover that radical acceptance is the out-breath of relaxing into seeing that things are the way they are. The body goes ahhhhh. During the in-breath we then proceed to make a statement, change or response from a place of peace, compassion and love.

Geese wing south

Radical acceptance actually allows a movement from the Holy Heart rather than our reactive primitive brain or conditioned movement or fear-based human creature.

Colorful leaves in a puddle

The best part of writing this spiritual blog daily is that now I can remember to relax into radical acceptance as this day unfolds.

Whatever shall be, shall be. We don’t have to like it. But we can relax into allowing it.

Even October snow.

Car buried in snow outside our house

Day 10 of a seventy-five day journey to more deeply connect with God, Spirit, Holy, Love…to explore β€œWhat the Heart Knows” during the waning days of 2020.

About Kathy

I live in the middle of the woods in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Next to Lake Superior's cold shores. I love to blog.
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41 Responses to Radical acceptance and October snow

  1. rehill56 says:

    My reactions to this sudden, overwhelming amount of snow over here made me EVENTUALLY chuckle. It was unexpected. It put a wrench in schedules and plans, it impeded movement and freedom. The Lights turned off! But the chuckles and the laughter came because it was so much and so early and it just seemed funny after all. And it was a beautiful snowfall. No wind with its scary howling; just snow falling, calmly, beautifully, abundantly, and peacefully. So today is acceptance and reconfiguring and letting it be. Life reminders in the time of Covid. Making lots of “lemonade”. Good morning Katita, sage of the wooded places.

    • Kathy says:

      Good morning, my dear Ruth! Nice to see you here today. I was chuckling at all the snow pics you posted on Facebook–the snow was so beautiful. But the poor folks who had plans and places to go…that’s harder to radically accept. Let go and let be, as we’re often counseled. I will meet you in this acceptance and reconfiguring and making lemonade out of lemons. Love you!

  2. Wow!!! It is what it is. So glad you were able to accept the freak snowfall and roll with it. And you got some breathtaking pictures — I love “Looking up” and the deer on your road. Animals are so good at radical acceptance.

    • Kathy says:

      Barbara, it seems like sometimes we’re able to accept things…and sometimes not so much. And it’s all a learning curve. Thanks for liking the pics! I was amazed to see deer on the road–haven’t seen them around in awhile–and the looking up view at all the snow coated to the branches was cool, too. Blessings to you today!

  3. Thank you so much for this bright view of winter weather – It’s cold here too in California. You inspire me. Love

  4. Such a joy to read your thoughts. That snow looks like you are dead in the winter! What is going on?

  5. Val Boyko says:

    Love those photos filled with awe and acceptance πŸ’›

  6. aFrankAngle says:

    Yikes. The sight caught me off guard, so I was startled. … but that’s OK. After all, your point of radical acceptance is very well taken. Think about the deer – who obviously does – so why can’t we? Cheers to your spiritual depth.

    • Kathy says:

      Sorry to startle you, Frank, way down south. Yes, you are so right. Look at those deer–accepting totally whatever comes, even as they run away into the woods. I am glad you liked the idea of radical acceptance.

  7. Barb says:

    I often think about acceptance but never thought about “radical” acceptance. I might I have a negative connotation to that word! It was zero degrees here overnight, and we got more snow. I’m usually up before dawn, but I “accepted” the cold and stayed snuggled under the quilt a bit longer this morning. Sunny now and a glorious white day.

    • Kathy says:

      Barb, how interesting that you might be triggered by the phrase “radical” acceptance. I believe it may have been termed by a spiritual teacher named Tara Brach who I read years ago. She may have even written a book by that name. I remember reading it in a library a long time ago. Zero degrees already! Glad you snuggled and that you are getting moisture in your neck of the woods.

  8. leelah saachi says:

    “Let the whole world fall apart and then watch it come together again in a brand new way.”
    Maybe this is what the corona is doing.
    I think I am going to do what you are doing from january first, Seems a very wise thing to do.

  9. jeffstroud says:

    Oh Dear! Snow, a beautiful quiet snow! The practical things in life getting in the way of nature being as she is, surprising and beautiful. Spirit offering an opportunity to put into practice, you seemed to have done well in that case. The opportunity to Be, to Be one with what is going on around you all at once, or maybe only in reflection as you wrote this… Yet you did have your camera, you did tae advantage of “seeing” more then just the early snow storm which inconvenienced your morning routine.

    • Kathy says:

      Hi Jeff–guess we are connecting a bit today! You are so right about Spirit offering an opportunity to put this teaching into practice, and then seeing more deeply than just the surface inconvenient storm. Thank you as always!

  10. Ally Bean says:

    A great message to take away from your unprecedented snowfall. Radical acceptance is the way forward. I love your photos, btw. The calm colors, the stillness implicit in snow– it’s lovely.

    • Kathy says:

      I am glad you liked the photos and the message, Ally Bean. It was fun to see what kind of blog would be written about the snowfall today. And all of a sudden these words came through!

  11. Sarah Davis says:

    Yes!!!! I wish I had learned acceptance earlier in life. Resisting what is takes too much energy and creates lots of stress that solves nothing.

    • Kathy says:

      Sarah, it sounds like you have learned this now, which is so wonderful. I learned it in the 90’s but experienced a dark dive into the soul in between then and now and have kinda forgot it at times. Am re-remembering these days. ❀

  12. Robin says:

    Thank you. For your beautiful images. For your beautiful words. For the reminder that we suffer when we resist. ❀
    Your snow is so lovely, especially on the yellow leaves and falling from the tree branches. I sometimes wonder how the trees feel about snow. Are they quietly accepting? It appears that way, but maybe they bitch to themselves about it the way we do when we're not accepting of what is.

    • Kathy says:

      Robin, I am smiling. I once had a dream of summer daisies all giggling together. I am wondering too whether trees gossip about the weather. Guess we’ll never know if they’re accepting or not. πŸ™‚ Thank you for enjoying both the images and words. xoxo

  13. Susan D. Durham says:

    Oh, I love this .. all of it, the thoughts and the pictures! You can imagine my bitching yesterday morning, scraping off the car and preparing for the “nightmare” drive in the dark to Houghton. Ha! The beauty of it all is amazing. I even thought that as my hands gripped the steering wheel while I forged a new trail down the highway. Radical acceptance – wow! Love that term and realize that we might fall right into that more often than would be thought. You continue to delight and amaze. So much love!

    • Kathy says:

      Ha! Susan! I can imagine your bitching and I am grinning from ear to ear and looking at your “Laugh” rock here by the computer. How utterly challenging. Even today–driving up to Herman–the road was icy and my hands gripped the wheel and I sang, “God is driving this car, God is driving this car, you can relax!” but the scared creature of the body didn’t quite believe it. I am so glad you like this idea! Just think if we can remember to practice it! xoxo

  14. dawnkinster says:

    I hesitated pushing the ‘like’ button, because it’s oh so early for this much snow. But I liked the advice…and I loved the colored leaves in the puddle. So there is much to like after all. Which is, I think, your point.

    • Kathy says:

      Dawn, it does seem too early for so much snow. My mom said it was spitting snow up in the Thumb yesterday afternoon while we were talking. I’m not sure we can always find things to like in all things–but perhaps we can accept what’s happening first and then act more calmly and compassionately from that acceptance. Thank you!

  15. Stacy says:

    Camus writes in The Myth of Sysiphus that we must revolt. “Revolt!” screams he. How to revolt? Accept it, that’s how. Accept the absurdity.

    (It’s still not easy to do.)


    • Kathy says:

      Really about Camus? Did not know this! Thank you for the lesson today, Stacy. (And you’re right, not easy one bit…sometimes it seems to get easier with practice…sometimes not at all. But I do remember being really happy during the 90’s when I was living more this radical acceptance thingee.)

  16. Tilly says:

    I know it’s a bugger for you, but it is pretty, I would have a row of snowmen by now 😁 As the song goes ‘Let it go, let it go
    Can’t hold it back anymore’
    Sorry snow as a strange affect on me

    Bright blessing

  17. Lori says:

    We’re going to have temps in the 50s for the rest of the week, so hopefully your warmer weather will melt that stuff.

    As to your musing for today: “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.”

  18. Joanne says:

    I love your snow so much, Kathy! (Said by the person who isn’t scraping it off a car at 7am in the morning. πŸ˜‰ )

  19. Wow beautiful snow! I love snow, but then it is relatively scarce where we live – we don’t often get heavy falls that lie around so it’s a treat when we do πŸ™‚

    • Kathy says:

      Andrea, for your sake I hope you get some beautiful snow that lingers long enough for you to enjoy it this winter. We will have more than our share, we are sure.

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