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"Rewiring the Soul is one the best introductions to the spiritual life I've ever read. Not esoteric but real-world and practical. The implications are profound." Peter Shepherd, author: Daring To Be Yourself

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Choosing to Live in a Friendly Universe

Have you ever noticed that when you are not in the best of moods, or when you are upset or resentful or angry about something, you seem to find more people who actually create even more of those feelings in you? Almost as though a tuning fork were set to ensure that those people with negative feelings that exactly match yours cross your path that day at exactly the same time as you are there! As a matter of fact, when I was younger this happened at a certain point with such frequency that I deliberately started paying attention to it. It had grabbed, you might say, my attention, because it was happening too often to be put down to mere coincidence. Was, I asked myself, the universe playing with me?

As I became aware of all of this, I also began noticing that when I was in a good place inside, I seemed to bring more people with that kind of mood, or inner vibration into my sphere during that day. It also seemed to be a lot more difficult to make me lose my cool, to become upset about anything, or to engage in hostility or negativity.

So, I thought, this must mean that depending on how I feel, and perhaps on what I emanate, just by virtue of what can be seen or felt by those who are in my vicinity, I attract a whole different kind of experience or person into my life. Therefore it appeared not to be a bad idea to decide that I live in a friendly universe, a term I have borrowed from Einstein and Wayne Dyer. A universe in which it is just as easy to run into friendly people as it is to run into angry people, just as easy to run into helpful people as it is to run into impatient and unkind people, just as easy to run into positive and joyful people, as it is to run into negative and unhappy people.

And although the connection is wide, as I revisited this topic in order to write today's article, that immediately made me think of a book titled Brain Rules by neuroscientist John Medina, who after writing many chapters jam-packed with near clinical detail about the brain and how to best understand how it works and how to deal with it, expresses wonder and amazement near the end of the book describing his young son one day as he accompanies him to his nursery school. They were walking a short distance that would have taken Medina father a few minutes to cover, but because he was escorting the small child, it took much longer. But mainly it took so long - and this was the source of the father's wonder - because his son stopped at every blade of grass, as if to observe its growth, or to examine how it had emerged from a minute crack in the cement of the sidewalk, or to become totally absorbed in the inspection of an ant as it shouldered its load of a bread crumb on its way to the underground anthill, following a long line of its brethren. He - Medina - realized his child was much more present than he himself tended to be, and although he does not use the term mindfulness in his book, I do, because I believe that is what a child does, and what we adults tend not to do, and hence find it so much harder to decide that we are living in a friendly universe.

As we arise in the morning, we already make decisions about the day in question:

  • oh no, it's raining
  • oh no, it's not raining
  • oh no, it's so cold
  • oh no, it's so hot

And the problem is not the condition of the weather, but our inner resistance to what is. Krishnamurti said that the secret to his happiness was not minding what happens, and I have repeated this frequently in workshops, talks and other articles, because I truly believe it contains endless wisdom. It does not mean becoming apathetic, but it does mean accepting what is, finding inner balance and peace with regards to that, and only then deciding what needs to be done about it, rather than embarking on reactions and actions based on a feeling of resistance to what is.

So if we embark on our day with an attitude of acceptance, and then go to the wonder and joy of the child, perhaps we will hear the brilliant birdsong as we open the window, or see the ray of sunshine amidst the grey, as it attempts to slice a cloud in half. And as we do so, we notice our inner energetic vibration being in a good place, and we are aware of the fact, not only due to research in a multitude of disciplines, but also because of how we feel on this more visceral, physical level, that our inner mindset is also affecting the state of our cells, our very biology.

And so we progress throughout our day, looking for the many reasons that the universe is indeed a friendly place, filled with events, and sights, and people and moments that can quicken our heart with joy and well-being … if only we decide.

You get to decide whether you live in a hostile or a friendly universe. You can decide what each of the things that happen every day mean. You get to decide whether your life is good or bad no matter how it may look on the outside...remember what I've said so often about Viktor Frankl or Nelson Mandela or the innumerous others who have gone through great suffering, and yet have made a choice about how their life is going, and especially how they are going to look at it, think about it, and hence, feel about it, and react to it.

It's also true that the more you look for reasons to believe that things are going against you, and that people don't like you or accept you, the less you will be disappointed in your expectations...

And don't forget that your thoughts - as molecular and cellular biology show us (see these posts on that subject) really do become things, so the manner in which you view your world and think about it is of great importance.

As I've pointed out so frequently: you choose.

You can choose to wake up in the morning and be grateful for the new day and new opportunities. You can choose to remember to be grateful to five people every day about something that happened with them, and to make a habit of this - without fail - in order to help keep your mind on that instead of what you didn't like. You can choose to find something in what you didn't like that is of value to you and your life, even if it is learning how to choose not to react negatively in the face of adversity.

You choose.

So start choosing the way that is of use to you, instead of the way that simply increments the negative; start choosing to live in a friendly universe.

You choose.

For much more about making choices, about inner well-being, about the self-transformational process - both in your outer life in the world, and in your inner life with your connection to your inner, divine self, have a look at my book Rewiring the Soul: Finding the Possible Self (paperback or e-book).

To download the first chapter, click here

From the Description on Amazon: Ask anyone, whatever their circumstances, if their life is vibrant, fulfilling, harmonious and happy. An honest reply is likely to be 'no', because to answer a truthful 'yes' is no mean feat. Only to grow psychologically and emotionally is not enough. And only to grow spiritually is not enough either. All three dimensions need to be developed in order to realize your full potential. If you are willing to assume total responsibility for the self and to start what is an on-going journey, you will quickly begin to glimpse the first fruits of the ultimate goal: inner well-being, freedom, peace, harmony and joy. This book sets out the pathway to self-mastery and self-discovery and walking that pathway will be the most exciting adventure of your life.

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