April 8, 2013

The Self-Acceptance Project: A Review. ~ Edith Lazenby

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Pathways to Embrace How You Are with Tami Simon

“You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection”

~ Gautama Buddha

Tami Simon, one of my heroes, leads the inteviews at Sounds True for their weekly podcasts at Insights at the Edge and now takes us on a journey in the Self-Acceptance Project as she talks to a variety of people, such as Brene Brown, Tara Brach, Sharon Salzberg and Mark Nepo, to name a few.

“In this FREE 12-week video event series, Tami Simon speaks with contemporary luminaries in spirituality, psychology, and creativity to learn how we can truly embrace who we are.” Per Sounds True.

Who doesn’t struggle with self-love?

Though there is a story I heard that when a Western teacher asked the Dali Lama about self-hate he did not understand the concept. The fact it was so foreign to him is difficult for me to wrap my mind around, much less my heart.

We all have self-doubt and shame. Don’t we all struggle to be the person we want to be?

I know I do. I have an idea of who I am and who I could be and what I need to do to become the best person I can be.

Now Sounds True has had the insight and innovation to help each of us find the self-acceptance we need to become who we want to be.

I have not listened to the whole program yet but am looking forward to more.

I started with Kristen Neff,an associate professor of Human Resources and Culture at the University of Texas at Austin, who presents us with the self-esteem movement and how it grows with positive self-judgment. Yet clarifies it is less about the judgment than how one relates to one’s self. She encourages us to let go of the inner critic as a problem.

The way to let go of the critic, the negativity tapes, is to meet that part of yourself with kindness and compassion rather than deepening the negativity with resistance. As we all know, what we resist persists.

And of course she encourages each of us to start with where we are and recognize our suffering.

Geneen Roth, teacher and writer, who wrote Woman, Food And God, has a  message similar in many ways but it’s  packaged differently. She talks about the development of the ego and how we internalize the parental voices we grew up with that were there to protect us; but at times, and in certain ways, those same voices diminished us.

The comfort here is we all have these voices. Some voices are stronger or meaner than others. The beauty is in seeing, as always, we are not as alone as we might feel we are.

Geneen opens up idea of the choice to take action and once again, I learn the key is being in the moment—the present of presence. Geneen shared that is what helped her the most.

There are many other teachers here and Tami has a way of finding the golden thread in any exchange and helping the listener to see the pattern the thread makes from beginning to end.

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Editor: Kate Bartolotta

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