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With a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Nonfiction degree (Goucher College, August 2014), I am looking at a new phase in my life. From 1992 to 2009, I served as Founding Executive Director of Miriam's House, a residence for homeless women living with AIDS. I left this position when Chronic Migraine Disease overtook my ability to do my job. Now I hope that a writing career will both accommodate the migraines and give me a creative, productive outlet. And soon, September 4, I will launch my Inkshares author page in a bid to hit the 1,000 pre-order goal in 90  days. The book I want to publish is "Nowhere Else I Want to Be," a memoir of ten of my years at Miriam's House.

23 August 2013

Reading Mariechild Together: Suffering Comes From Resistance

If suffering comes from resistance, as Diane Mariechild says in today's reading (Open Mind -- Women's Daily Inspirations for Becoming Mindful), where does joyful acceptance come from? It may seem like a stupid question. After all, the title of the reading today 'Joyful Acceptance' so wouldn't I just read the piece to find out?

 Well, sorta.

I just find myself needing extra encouragement these days, extra patient explanations and more time for thought and realization. I have to read between the lines a little bit.

Charlotte Joko Beck says, in the quote at the top of the page :

A life of joy is not in seeking happiness, but in experiencing and simply being the circumstances of our life as they are.

I have posted often about acceptance, I have posted about joy, about suffering (see the Labels column to the right of this post). But the idea that resisting suffering has its opposite, at least in the way Mariechild discusses it, is a connection I had not made before.

The opposite of resisting is accepting; the opposite of suffering is joy. Instead of resisting suffering, I choose to look around and accept joy. Not manufacture joy, not choose or buy or find something that makes me joyful. Accept joy. Meaning joy, like suffering, is all around, is part of life, is there for the noticing and the intention to accept. Meaning that as available as suffering is in this life, so available is joy.

There for the noticing, there for the simple intention of accepting it.

How cool is that?