Acceptance has personally been for me the most challenging aspect of Zen training over the years, admittedly taking some practice to master. By acceptance, I mean the perspective of offering life zero resistance, where we go with the flow regarding whatever happens in our lives whilst simultaneously treating all experiences as if we had personally invited them into our lives ourselves. That we hold in regard whatever circumstances arise, the good and the bad, with equal measure; understanding that both have value. Going with the flow is a perspective that cultivates better mental health and contributes towards proactive stress management by alleviating much unnecessary stress before it has chance to settle & grow roots within the mind.
We don’t have to like a situation to fully accept it. Using the weather as a metaphor for a moment, we can accept rainfall and still get on with our day without having to actually like the rain. The rain will be there whether we want it to be or not, even if we spent all day actively rejecting it, so it’s better to just accept the weather and get on with our plans, otherwise we miss out on life and spend our day feeling resentful & victimised. So it goes with life’s unexpected twists and turns, we can accept what happens and get on with our lives without having to like what’s actually going on.
By being here but wanting desperately to be over there where life is more comfortable means that we’re subconsciously rejecting the present moment and sabotaging any possibility to find peace in the here-&-now, the only place that real peace can actually be found. Peace can never be cultivated whilst the mind is in rejection-mode of the present.
We become physically and emotionally tense through our internal resistance to what is. Keeping our focus on where we want to be instead of where we are can leave an individual feeling perpetually dissatisfied, unsettled and anxious; as the body goes where the mind leads. If the mind is not at peace, then the body cannot be at peace. It’s not actually the situation that governs our peace, it’s our perspective of the situation that governs our peace. This is in our favour, as our perspectives can be developed and tweaked whereas often external situations outside of our control cannot.
Now, whenever something happens in life that I do not like, I accept that I cannot physically change this situation but will just adapt to it as best as I can and make the most of what is happening whilst simultaneously managing my stress levels as the situation plays itself out. I treat unplanned and inconvenient circumstances now as plot-twists in my story and trust that life knows what it’s doing, as my life unfolds for the benefit of my evolution. If it everything works out the way that I want, I’ll be happier. If it does not, then I’ll be stronger & wiser. Either way it’s a win-win.
Removing our psychological resistance to what is alleviates a vast amount of avoidable stress ensuring a much more peaceful life experience.
This album’s title track honours the non-resistant life perspective of eastern mysticism. Applying this ancient wisdom to my own life made a profound difference to my own mental health. I had so much fun making Nil-resistence, it is my sincere hope that you experience as much joy when listening to it’s tracks as I did whilst creating them.
All my love to you, friend. – Beat Mystik