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Radical Approval of Life

Radical Approval of Life

Do themes sometimes appear in your life, seemingly unbidden? For example, you hear a similar message from three unrelated sources, as if the universe is knocking on your consciousness and saying, “Hey, pay attention!”? That’s been happening to me on the subject of radical acceptance and approval. 
I love these quotes  in The Eros Sutras, Volume 1, Principles, by Nicole Daedone in the chapter on “Approval”:
“The subtle art of approval is central to the erotic life. To genuinely approve we must access the noble part of ourselves. This nobility has an infinite and unshakable largesse and generosity, and it thoroughly endorses what we encounter. We are joyfully engaged. We are hospitable. No matter who we are and what we do we radiate the nobility of approval.” 
“We are able to begin practicing approval only when we realize our own perfection. Otherwise, we are always discriminating, accepting this and rejecting that. We are always holding back, unreceptive. Everything must prove its worthiness, including ourselves. And so our behaviors feel grasping or stingy because underneath them we’re scraping for a shred of this nobility, for this quality of approval, that is already inside of us.”
“While it might offer a temporary sense of control, no brilliance has ever come from disapproval. With approval, we see how we can come to love what's happening right here right now. It is the act of faith from which the works can come forth. Only approval can birth life of a higher order.”
There is a kernel of the Stoics in Nicole’s thinking, in particular Amor Fati ( "love of one's fate"  or “loving what is”).  Amor Fati is about accepting and embracing everything that happens in life, including suffering and loss, as part of the natural order. This perspective does not imply passivity or resignation but instead promotes an active engagement with life, recognizing that every experience, whether perceived as good or bad, contributes to the richness and fullness of existence. In practicing amor fati, one finds a deeper level of peace and contentment, viewing life’s challenges as opportunities for growth and self-discovery.
Mystic Patrick Connor also talks about this, in the context of being liberated from constricting adaptations, saying, “Judgment and make-wrong suppress the flow of life.” He also encourages radical self-honesty, but without the shoulds or the self-flagellation all too common in introspection, saying, “There’s a tendency to stop at judgment- instead, see it through to non-judgment. He also suggests that “whatever you were judged, punished or criticized for as a young person is a good place to look to where you might not be able to go through self-judging to unconditional love and blessing.” The presence that holds nonjudgement is unbelievably healing, for yourself and others. 
In all three of these approaches, we don’t waste energy wishing it were different. If something is arising in me (or the world), I look at it with radical self honesty, I love it and don’t make it wrong. Then I can investigate it with compassion, look at its texture and flavor and nuance, ask what it is and why it’s there, notice the feelings and memories underneath it. Surprisingly, only then, in love and non-judgement, can the unhelpful patterns dissolve in the core.
Otherwise, we are muscling over the needs that caused the behavior in the first place. And once we’ve looked at the way things are honestly, we can move in a new direction, with an accurate starting point. There is no real future without bringing the unconscious into awareness, otherwise we are just repeating the past ad infinitum. 
So, I go into this week with this question: where can I meet life with more approval, with more acceptance and less resistance, how can I better love life exactly as it is showing up today?