Accept BOTH your “good” and your “bad”

It’s okay to accept both the good and bad parts of ourselves, as noted by one of Carl Jung’s patients who wrote to him describing a relationship between self-acceptance and self-knowledge:

Mute swan Cygnus olor gliding across a mist covered lake at dawn

“By keeping quiet, repressing nothing, remaining attentive, and by accepting reality —taking things as they are, and not as I wanted them to be—by doing this, unusual knowledge has come to me, and unusual powers as well, such as I could never have imagined before.  I always thought that when we accepted things, they overpowered us in some way or other. This turns out not to be true at all, and it is only by accepting them that one can assume an attitude towards them.  So now I intend to play the game of life, being receptive to whatever comes to me, good and bad, sun and shadow forever alternating, and in this way, also accepting my own nature with its positive and negative sides. Thus everything becomes more alive to me. What a fool I was! How I tried to force everything to go according to the way I thought it ought to.”

–quoted in Anthony Storr’s book, Solitude: A Return to Self


About Lightning Heart

Nomad. Poet. Philosopher. Teacher. View all posts by Lightning Heart

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