Radiant Acquiescence: How to Process Greif
Wisdom from Barbara Deal
Your question has been a wonderful challenge to my understanding of Radiant Acquiescence. No one has ever asked me before, HOW does one, how did I, come to terms with the tragedy (and emptiness and pain) [of losing a loved one]. How do you DO radiant acquiescence while walking through shock and deep pain?
Glenn [Clark] was, of course, my intro to the notion of radiant acquiescence. He wrote, in the context of The Divine Plan, "...the best way to put myself in harmony with the Divine Plan that is within myself is to accept with radiant acquiescence all the individuals and events that are drawn to me, seeing in them perfect instruments for the perfect unfoldment of my perfect Plan..."
So the first step is the acceptance of the event (even when everything in me screams, "No!!!! No!!!!!!) And for me, it goes even deeper, and is a more active stance, than passively accepting the facts, allowing the facts of the situation. And that is to EMBRACE it, to actively choose to draw the loss to me, with all its pain and regret and bewilderment and anger and judgments -- holding the pain to me, cuddling it, bonding with it, digesting it, even. This is exactly the opposite of our conditioning. And it is a key to overcoming the shock and the agony.
Okay, that's a good idea, and possibly one for which you immediately recognize the value. But how do we get from an intellectual recognition to acting on it? One step is to not resist, and every single time a memory, or a regret, or the anger and frustration, or the denial pop into your head, consciously choose to stop. To breathe deeply into the feelings. To let go as deeply as you know how. To become aware of what is always true: that you are wrapped and enfolded in a Love that is beyond time and space, infinite, healing wholeness – not something outside you, but of your very essence.
There is a paradox to radiant acquiescence. It IS something you open to, and you choose, and you can build spiritual muscle by choosing it and acting on it. First, you see that it is a principle, then you choose to act as though it is true, and in acting on it consistently, it BECOMES true in your experience... That's our part.
AND radiant acquiescence is also a GIFT. A gift from God who is in the deepest core of your being – as you embrace everything to do with this huge discontinuity in your life, and create the inner space for accepting and embracing it in your heart and mind and spirit – God rushes in with the GIFT of radiant acquiescence, that perfectly matches the space you've created within yourself for the JOY and healing that comes with radiant acquiescence.
This is so difficult to put into words, because what we're considering lies outside the realm of our normal conditioning and experience of the world. But it is a realm that is even more real than the realm of our senses – and radiant acquiescence is God's own presence within you, growing like a gorgeous, fruitful plant, that, over time, heals your own hurt – and grows so big that it spills out to heal others around you, and eventually participates in healing the world. "Thy Kingdom come" is a fruit of radiant acquiescence and total surrender to Love, the love that will not let us go.