Accept the Situation and There Is No Problem

I’m printing the following quotation from a book by Ma Dharm Jyoti called One Hundred Tales for Ten Thousand Buddhas because I plan to refer to it in a future post, but the quote is true and useful on its own.

It is very hot in the afternoon and Osho is resting on His cot after lunch; everyone else has gone out. I close the latch of the door and sit on the floor near His cot and start fanning Him with a little hand fan. After a while He opens His eyes and says, “Stop fanning and go to sleep.”

I feel maybe He is thinking I am tired; but I am really enjoying it — making Him a little comfortable. I tell Him, “It is very hot and I can continue to fan you.”

He says, “Just accept the situation and there is no problem.” He closes His eyes again; I stop fanning Him and slowly move away. I can see curious people jumping and peeping in at the windows which have no curtains. I watch Him — He is resting like an emperor on His golden throne.

You can read the book for free on the Web or buy it from Amazon.

4 thoughts to “Accept the Situation and There Is No Problem”

  1. Great! Thanks, Freddie! I look forward to seeing your post in which you, and perhaps later, others, discuss acceptance.

    To get the conversation going, here are a few statements on acceptance which immediately sprang to my mind and which some of my teachers, and some others who were not (at least not directly), have made about the subject – and of course it is all the same but from nicely-put, slightly different angles:

    J. Krishnamurti: “Do you want to know my secret? This is my secret. I don’t mind what happens.”

    Nisargadatta Maharaj: “Pleasure lies in the relationship between the enjoyer and the enjoyed. And the essence of it is acceptance. Whatever may be the situation, if it is acceptable, it is pleasant. If it is not acceptable, it is painful. What makes it acceptable is not important; the cause may be physical, or psychological, or untraceable; acceptance is the decisive factor. Obversely, suffering is due to non-acceptance”

    The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous: “And acceptance is the answer to all my problems today. When I am disturbed, it is because I find some person, place, thing, situation — some fact of my life — unacceptable to me, and I can find no serenity until I accept that person, place, thing, or situation as being exactly the way it is supposed to be at this moment.”

    Eckhart Tolle: “Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Always work with it, not against it. Make it your friend and ally, not your enemy. This will miraculously transform your whole life…all unhappiness and struggle dissolve, and life begins to flow with joy and ease.” Eckhart often used to speak (and I assume still does) about never using the present, mentally-viewed “unacceptable” moment as a “stepping stone” to a “more acceptable” future moment – which of course in a way is madness.

    Eckhart often referred (as did the Ma Dharm Jyoti quote which you provided) to life presenting “only situations” which remain merely only situations until the mind – kind of unbelievably, actually – with our meek cooperation, transforms them into problems.

    And probably the most widely-recognized statement on acceptance from so many centuries ago:

    “The Great Way is not difficult
    for those who have no preferences.
    When love and hate are both absent
    everything becomes clear and undisguised.
    Make the smallest distinction, however,
    and heaven and earth are set infinitely apart.”

    Acceptance has been for many years one of the touchstones of how I – rightly or wrongly, correctly or incorrectly – have measured my spiritual earnestness (to which Nisargadatta says “everything yields”). I didn’t at first know how to “work on” acceptance but then in “I Am That” he (or maybe Maurice Frydman) said, “Leave it to the unknown as far as the results go, just go through the necessary movements”.

    When I read that, I thought, “Hey, I can do that – just mechanically proceed, like a soldier at boot camp. I may not be that smart (since I only went to college…), but then he’s saying that I don’t need to understand the why or other aspects of it that my mind hopes to sidetrack me into wasting time on – I just need to do what the man says. Maybe the connecting-of-the-dots part will come afterwards.”

    And, for me, the most critical and powerful among the “necessary movements” was to “just turn your mind away” – NOT to refuse to think (which is impossible) but to refuse to harbor, pay “excessive interest” to or otherwise be submerged by thoughts – instead to “blankly” turn away from them, including thoughts about how sucky this present moment is compared to well-deserved future moments which my mind would assure me would be so much better. Again, a kind of commonly-accepted madness, albeit still madness.

    I felt even more encouraged when he said to not be disheartened by the inevitable lack of initial or immediate success but to “go back to your attempts till the brushing away of every desire and fear, of every reaction becomes automatic.” When he said, essentially, to not worry about it, but to simply trust him that he knows what he is talking about and to “just go through the necessary movements” as he very specifically laid them out – well, that was a kind of a turning point for me.

    I thought, “there must be more to it than that…”, but that soon went away when I read again (and this time it clicked) his statement that allowing oneself to “trust the innocent and the simple” (which I had always wanted to do but didn’t have the courage to so follow that impulse) was, along with earnestness, really all that was required to be relieved of the person and of all of its falsely-conceived burdens.

    Obviously, by ignoring desire, by refusing to react (as Robert Adams so frequently emphasized), by actively and patiently committing to the practice of firmly, immediately, courageously and blankly turning away from all deliciously-alluring or, incredibly, deliciously-unsettling thoughts – save for obvious exceptions such as balancing the checkbook or whether and how to land the plane on the Hudson River – including thoughts of how this present moment is so dissatisfactory (i.e., is such a “problem” – even though IT, alone, is not!) my mind eventually “learned” that I was no longer going to willingly acquiesce to it no matter how I “felt” about a situation since “moods are of the mind and do not matter.” Then, it left me alone, although this took a while over several stages.

    I trust that some of this was lucid since I, as is my wont, happily got a little carried away and decided to touch on some related topics, which though, taken as a whole, I hope still fit together for the most part.

    Thanks once more, Freddie, for your post and I know I will enjoy reading what you and others are led to write in the perhaps not-too-distant future about your Ma Dharm Jyoti quote.

    1. Your comment should be the post and my post should be the comment. 🙂 I think you explained things very clearly. I’m glad to hear that you had so much success with this approach. It’s also nice to see Maurice Frydman getting the recognition he deserves. 🙂 As I’m sure you know, that sentence from I Am That is the main idea of Karma Yoga. The idea is sometimes expressed with the phrase “nishkama karma,” literally “desireless action.” I think we can add Jesus Christ to the list of people who advocated this yoga, because I think that’s what he probably meant in the part of the Sermon on the Mount where he told people not to worry about tomorrow, “consider the lilies of the field,” etc.

  2. I have been reading this blog and selections from this website for the last couple of years and have benefited greatly from it. Thank you both for these posts. They have helped to clarify something that I have been struggling with which is “trusting the innocent and the simple “.

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