Radical Acceptance is this week’s DBT concept/practice/homework. Radical acceptance is the skill of accepting the things you can’t change, á la the Serenity Prayer. The radical part indicates that it is complete and total. The acceptance part is seeing reality for what it is, even if you don’t like it.
Radical Acceptance = “It is what it is.”
I’m coming to understand radical acceptance as a choice, a practice even. Whenever I see myself getting tangled up in non-acceptance (anger, denial, bitterness, self-pity), I acknowledge it and let it go, opening myself up to accepting reality as it is. Over and over again. This is called “turning the mind” in DBT-speak.
It feels like I have found a Zen practice group, except that they call it DBT and it is focused on borderline folks. There is other stuff in DBT that is not based in Zen, but cognitive therapy. But it really gets my notice that the chapter on dialectics in our workbook is entitled “Walking the Middle Path.”
Radical acceptance involves trust—trusting that the universe is indeed perfect and complete, just as it is. That I am perfect and complete: Jun (pure, immaculate, undefiled, perfect) and en (the enso—complete, total, encompassing everything). It’s right there in my name: Jun’en, perfect and complete.
Here’s to realizing that, over and over again, in the present moment. I could say I’m not there yet, but I am here and right now, here is sufficient. Even that is too much, even that includes judgment.
I am here. In that is everything.