“A quality life has nothing to do with being dealt perfect cards, it has to do with learning how to play an imperfect hand well. ” This is what story teller Carl Hammerschlag has to say in his book Kindling the Spirit: Healing from Within. Hammerschlag is a keeper of wisdom who, through his stories, helps guide and inspire others. Check out what he has to say about radical self-acceptance in chapter five. Now here are some folks who’ve played the pitiful hands they were dealt with absolute brilliance!
Kindling the Spirit: Radical Self-Acceptance, Chapter 5
by Carl Hammerschlag
Living the good life has nothing to do with whether you are born with a silver spoon, or if you’ve had to survive enormous hardship. Whatever hand life deals you turns out to be less important than the choices you make about playing the hand you’ve been dealt. A quality life has nothing to do with being dealt perfect cards,it has to do with learning how to play an imperfect hand well. Destiny is the hand that you’re dealt; free will is how you choose to play it. Choice is the greatest power because it gives you an opportunity to move beyond the powerlessness of your predicament. If you believe you have no choice, that you are so gripped by fear that it immobilizes you, then your only hope is to wait for something/someone other than yourself to bail you out. St. George may miraculously appear and slay your dragon (and miracles do happen), but you’ve surrendered your destiny to someone else’s control.
Find a way to be fully present with who are and where you find yourself, then you can choose to take one step to live a quality life; that is playing the hand well and practicing radical self-acceptance.
I remember Roger Ebert as the short, chubby partner of that great film critic duo, Siskel and Ebert. Roger Ebert was sharp, witty, and literate, with big-rimmed eyeglasses that made him look owlishly professorial. I hadn’t seen him in years and in March 2010, I saw him on the Oprah Winfrey Show. It wasn’t the Roger from my memory; his face was thinner, scarred, and he spoke with a synthesized voice.