The Power of Coincidence - David Richo

A series of unusual correspondences or similar happenings may not be mere coincidence but meaningful coincidence. From this point of view, awkward jolts can become graceful transitions, and stops can become steps. We grasp that the people, places, and events of our lives are showing us what we need to know or where we are ready to go. Everyone and everything in our story is part of how our life is coming together and there's nothing left to fear. We then stand at an attention for our destiny and join it deliberately, rather than resisting, complaining about, or otherwise bemoaning our fate

If our life unfolded only according to our plans, we would miss out on many surprises. Those unexpected events beyond our control are the forces of synchronicity that make us who we are - and who we were always meant to be. Synchronicity comes to us as an assisting force in this evolution. We are helped in finding ourselves and we help others find themselves

Most of us are quite aware of our limited powers and not so aware of our boundless potential. This potential is our true Self, an energy that is unconditionally and universally loving, discerning with the wisdom of the ages, and abundantly rich with healing powers

Synchronicity comes along to wake us and fulfill us. Synchronicities are unusual, unexpected, not constructed or controlled by human ego

The human organism comes equipped with self-healing powers. We have three reliable and highly skilled healers: the grace of the body (inner physician) who rushes to the scene of an accident, the grace of the psyche (inner psychologist) who knows just how to help u s with our emotional injure, and the grace of the soul (inner priest, guardian angel, spiritual guide) who knows the full itinerary of our journey through life and can offer the provisions it requires. It brings synchronicities, dreams, intuitions, bursts of imagination, spontaneous creativity, sudden awakenings, and other spiritual gifts. We participate by faithful attention and then by acting in accord with the callings of our destiny

The physical work leads to the joy of health. The psychological work leads to the joy of responsible living and effective relating. The spiritual work leads to the joy of universal love. Our work in all three areas is to synchronize our learned skills with our inborn resources

Learn to read synchronicity in your own life so that you can discover:
- How to interpret a series of similar happenings
- How to open yourself to the assisting forces around you
- How to get past the fears that can stop you from being you
- How to deal with fate and participate in your own destiny
- How to tell the right time from the wrong time
- How to use creative imagination in your choices
- How to honor and learn from your dreams
- How to integrate your psychological and spiritual work
- How to live in accord with your deepest needs and wishes

Awareness of synchronicity makes you a person of more depth, especially as you see the underlying significance of your story and the world's story as one and the same. Synchronicity shows us that more is at work than can be accounted for by chance

1. A Moment Becomes momentum

Synchronicity is a term used to describe coincidences that are related by meaningfulness rather than by cause and effect. These coincidences are life-affecting and yet beyond our control. Meaningful coincidence, rather than random chance, is a governing dynamic for all human experience and history. Thus synchronicity underlies our collective as well as our personal destiny. As we become more attentive to it, we see how our destiny is unfolding and how to take a hand in it

Personally, synchronicity can point us to new challenges or teach us what we need to know. In synchronicity, seemingly random events collaborate to fashion a connection that is meaningful to a person it happens to. Meaningfulness happens when an event or experience in conscious life puts us in contact with unconscious forces that lead us to a fulfillment of our destiny. Our destiny is anything that leads to birth, death, finding a life purpose , or awakening to spiritual consciousness. Coincidence is a bond between two hitherto unconnected realities . Synchronicity joins something going on outside us with something happening inside us

Coincidence usually refers to something that happens at a specific moment. But meaningful links and correspondences can be ongoing, that is, always present and essential, though often unnoticed

The world of synchronicity thus includes both startling in-the-moment awakenings and quieter, long-term realizations

Indeed, synchronicity cannot happen by any conscious intervention of ego since it is a phenomenon of grace. it is a moment that manifests the unity that always and already existed between psychological and spiritual, mind and universe. It occurs when something unconscious is ready for a step us into consciousness

Synchronicity is the surprise that something unplanned pr unwanted suddenly fits. Synchronicity also works directly or symbolically in a dream, intuition, or premonition. They may speak to an existing life situation and present a useful meaning to it. Dreams and astrology manifest many synchronous correspondences. the function of intuition is to reveal the vast field of possibility in this one moment of insight

Our answered prayers are another manifestation of synchronicity, since prayers that are fulfilled are the ones that are consistent with our destiny

Each event of our life is synchronicity as it lines up to make enlightenment possible in any and every moment. Synchronicity appears in a single, sometimes painful, occurrence that sets off a chain of events that work out for the best

Synchronicity is found in an event that seems meaningless when it happens but later shows itself to be of utmost significance. the many synchronicities in lives of most great people so very emphatically how synchronicity points to destiny.

- Synchronicity can arise in the form of a dream that answers a waking world question or in a dream that foretells the future
- Synchronicity shows itself in sudden or spontaneous decisions that we make, not knowing why, that later prove significant
- Synchronicity occurs in an unusual coincidence that later proves to be necessary or helpful
- Synchronicity can appear as a response to a question about the future or about the reality of a spiritual world
- There is synchronicity in the way we find our destiny in life through people and events
- There is synchronicity in the way a physical disability and/or an emotional wound becomes the threshold to our mission in life or to the unfolding of our talents. The wounded healer archetype thrives on this synchronicity (our wounds are often the openings into the best and most beautiful part of us. It takes just such evil and painful things for the great emancipation to occur)
- Synchronicity can open us to our psychological work or to our sense of a world beyond rational scientific thought
- Synchronicity is at work when something occurs that substantiates a belief or philosophy of life

Synchronicity invites or challenges us to become more capable of loving, of accessing wisdom, of becoming a source of healing and peace. the actualization of these potentials is our spiritual destiny. We do not create our destiny; we participate in its unfolding

You can work with Synchronicity in two ways:
1. Learn to recognize synchronicities and follow them up with practices that take their cues, always uniquely designed by your higher Self to move you toward your destiny of wholeness
2. Consider each of these elements of synchronicity and ask which ones are afoot right now in your life. Make a conscious choice to become aware of these as they happen in the near future

Ways to help you:
1. Keep Track in your journal of any coincidences that happen to you. Notice which of them become meaningful, change your perspective in such a way that new things can happen to you (make you more loving, wiser, or more able to help or heal yourself or others). Find a personal message from these experiences. This happens when you challenge yourself to act in new ways to go out of character, to be more authentic about your deepest needs and wishes, and to have a sense of personal mission. Share your experiences, listen to feedback, take the feedback as an extension of the synchronicity

2. Look at the significant events in your life; explore the synchronicities that may have happened around them. What message was trying to come through? Look at events that seemed negative at first and then turned into something good. Now look at your present life if synchronicity happens around an event that seems negative to you now, there may be something positive in the works

3. Pay attention to the surprises that happen to you. What do they call you to uncover? Are you setting up your life so that there will be no surprises?

4. What are some correspondences, similarities, or serendipities that have happened this month how do they warn, guide, or confirm you? What may be afoot in your life? Perhaps there are obligations that you want to be done with. Perhaps there are things you may be loath to lose, but the time has come to let them go

5. What are the images that come up over and over for you? How do they point to something you are ready to go for or let go of? Is there a need or want in you that is not being fulfilled?

6. Every coincidence offers a grace. Notice how and increase of consciousness led to an increase in love, wisdom, and healing

7. The next time you experience déjà vu, ask yourself what is unfinished that is asking for closure, or what loss you are regretting, or what era of life you might like to return to in order to begin again at that point. How does any of this elicit grief or its milder friend, nostalgia?

8. Has there been a series of similar events or dreams in the past month? What is the common theme? What force beyond yourself is trying to reach you through this orchestration of your life?
9. Most people have some powers of premonition or ESP. When have they displayed themselves in the course of your life? For most people they arise, more emphatically when something is brewing within. Do you notice yourself becoming more sensitive when major things or transitions are afoot? The more attention you pay to the powers the more they will increase. Inner power is a guest that loves to visit a welcoming host

Examples if interfering Synchronicities
A Series of ------------------------------------ May mean that it is time to:

Losses ---------------------------------------- Let go
Opportunities -------------------------------- Take hold
Informative facts being revealed ------------- Take heed or break through denial
Failure to locate information ------------------ You do not need to know yet or at all
False accusations ----------------------------- Let go of the need to impress
Many things going wrong --------------------- Step back
Physical breakdowns ------------------------- Pay attention to your stresses
Transitions that happen with ease ------------ You are on track
Embarrassments ----------------------------- Deflate ego
The same old problems ----------------------- This is where your work is
Betrayals ------------------------------------- Relocate your trust
Memories -------------------------------------Let yourself grieve
Opportunities to be generous ------------------Let go of attachment and clinging

A series of losses by also call for effort instead of letting go. A synchronicity may feel like something that is "meant to be" when it is really "meant to beware!” There is no reliable chart or pilot when it comes to navigating the seas of change and synchronicity. It is our call. Therefore, a danger is considering synchronicity is to project a meaning where there is none in order to fulfill our own ego need to feel special. We might also see coincidences in a paranoid way, imagining others are either plotting against us or venerating us. it is wise to share our interpretations of synchronicities with those we trust to get objective feedback or to confirm our groundedness

Every synchronicity in my life is just such a bridge

2. How Synchronicity Touches Us and Our Relationships

Meaningfulness is always the ultimate criterion of synchronicity, and it happens only when we notice it

Individuation is the lifelong process by which we become who we really are: our inner wholeness becomes visible, our potentials are realized. the result is psychologically effective and spiritually enlightened living. We are usually oblivious or in denial for a long time before we finally recognize an acknowledge the truth of who we are

How we meet our future partners is usually synchronicity at work in our lives. We might also say that every experience of falling in love or of entering in an intimate relationship is an example of synchronicity since we inevitably meet just the people who teach us what we need to learn about life, love and ourselves. We meet the people on whom we can transfer the needs and expectations related to our childhood. We bond with the person who will show us what we have not worked through from our past and who will help us complete our unfinished emotional business, if we are willing to do the work it takes for that to happen. In fact, synchronicity always happens because of a link between a new contact with someone and what follows later that turns out to be important to us

Over and over in life we are meeting exactly the people who help us wake up to what is dormant in ourselves. It can happen in a blind date, in a chance meeting, at a lecture we are dragged to, at a mistaken address, and in the "chemistry" between ourselves and someone else from which a romance or marriage may result

The thrust toward wholeness /individuation makes up to place ourselves in relationships that help us complete the unfinished business of childhood

Transference assigns parental meanings onto an adult partner. Projection makes us see in others what is disavowed in ourselves, both positively in our untapped potential and negatively in our hidden unacceptable traits and wishes

Indeed, everyone and every event in life's drama is part of the metaphor of our journey. Most of us keep meeting partners who show us exactly where our work is. Our wounds are openings into our missing life. Often, the only way a lost piece of ourselves or of our history comes back to us is through another person. The unknown is scary, so just the right people and events come along that help us go there. The only mistake we make is hanging on to some people too long or too briefly

The only thing that can get in the way is my own ego, not the events that occur or the people who bring them

In addition to meeting remarkable persons, we also meet up with exactly the experiences that open or awaken us. It can happen through a book that is life changing, a blunder that hurls an unexpected advantage toward us, a look that makes room for new possibilities, an opportunity that was meant for someone else and came our way, a plan that failed and became a boon unhoped for, an accident that disabled us, a disaster that devastated us, a windfall that gratified us, a rejection by one person followed by an unexpected appreciation by another, something crossing our path that disturbs or profits us, everything falling into place, or the luck of the draw

We are living behind an obstacle over which we have no control. Then we see the choice to become more of a controller or more of a listener. This is openness, a readiness to learn. When we are ready to learn, a teacher appears

Synchronicity activates and enlivens us when there is a significant coincidence between what happens to us and our internal readiness for a change or a transition. To integrate is to go with what wants to happen, not stopping the momentum of that which I cannot change but riding it, jumping on the train just as it comes through the station. Trust is always an invaluable companion on the synchronous track. Our work is then to capitalize on conscious choice moments that match inner unconscious momentum

There is a special synchronicity in suddenly saying Yes to an offer or experience that would ordinarily be out of character for us to assent to. The Yes to something that anytime before would have received a No was synchronicity within us taking us beyond our limits

Grace is the higher power than ego at work in synchronicity. This power seems to have heart. that is, to want what is best for our growth. This follows from the fact that synchronous events usually present just the challenges that makes for our personal progress and for that of our planet

Synchronicity is found also in the coincidence of an image we have held onto with fascination over the years and some piece of our work on ourselves for which it is a metaphor. Anything that has gripped and enriched us has a larger meaning than we may guess. Images held onto with fascination are thereby assisting forces. Blisses are too. And, when bliss meets talent, behold the synchronicity of finding a vocation

In synchronicity a coincidence makes a meaningful connection between our vocation and our destiny. Our destiny is to evolve, to be fulfilled, to become self realized, and to share our unique gifts. Some of our gifts are talents, skills and aptitudes, psychological and physical. Our spiritual gifts are showing love unconditionally, seeing and acting wisely, and bringing healing to ourselves and our world

Synchronicity is also just in time. And it can be also recognized as we look back upon our life and notice how it all prepared us or instructed us for the fullest fruition of our potential

There is negative synchronicity in world events that bring destruction because of a dangerous or tragic coincidence in time, place, or decision

Consider an example that is more personal: you meet someone who captives you. By synchronicity you meet up with him again and again. You are excited and you presume this is the force of destiny. You believe he is your soul mate but in reality he is the trickster who takes all you have and leaves you flat. There was indeed a connection between you but it is not destiny. It was karma. You met him so you could learn something, not so that you could live happily ever after in his embrace. This appears to be negative synchronicity but becomes positive when you gain knowledge of yourself from your experience, learn not to seek to revenge but let go, and of course becomes more careful the next time

Practicing the Beginner's Mind
1. List the things you are finding out about yourself from this book and from the synchronicities of your recent life. Usually, when we are ready to know Where our work is, we are ready to begin doing it. The work consists of addressing, processing, and hopefully thereby resolving what has come up. Having that beginner's mind alone is success

2. Consider the problem or symptom that nags at you physically or emotionally. It may be a synchronous repetition that symbolizes a deep cry or longing that you have failed to acknowledge . Give it a hearing and follow what it says by dialoguing with the symptom or problem in written form. Look particularly for the gift dimension of the symptom that plagues you

3. Notice the circular self-nagging phrases from your parents that you keep hearing in your head. Notice those you say most often to your children or partner. How are those true in a large sense than is found in the literal meaning? How do these verdicts dictate your life choices, your manner with others and your self image? How can they be redesigned so that they are healing?

4. What you have wanted to be all your life may be synchronous with what the universe needs from you to fulfill your destiny of happiness and the capacity to give to others what only you can give. What has held you back from going for it? What has propelled you toward it? Thank the people who encouraged your self-emergence

"As I settle into the reality of who I am, with pride in my limits and unabashed awareness of my limits, I notice that I feel lighter and happier"


A profoundly personal form of synchronicity is in mirroring in early life. Mirroring is pleased and gracious acceptance of an infant by a mother so that she reflects and responds to his needs. Mirroring installs a coherent sense of self, that is, a healthy, functional ego identity. Resourceful children whose parents were inadequate or neglectful about mirroring found their own sources of mirroring in relatives, other adults, older siblings, etc. Later in life we seek mirroring from partners in friendship and through intimate relationship.

Mirroring is unconditional positive regard shown by the five A's: Attention, Acceptance, Affection, Appreciation, and Allowing. Our self esteem and self respect emerge from and are sustained by a mirroring dialogue first with parents and then with those with whom we relate lovingly.

The opposite of the five A's is shaming. The more ashamed we are about ourselves, the less self respect do we tend to have. We are wounded in ways that someday it will be our work to heal

Because of mirroring, I succeed to see myself through another's empathic attunement to me. The ultimate purpose and outcome of mirroring is to develop self mirroring skills. This shows us the depth of the synchronous self empathy that expands into compassion for others. This is why once we are free to feel, we can feel more deeply for others

Personal human evolution occurs in the transition from restrictive nurturance of our original family members to a new support system of enriching people found in the wider world, a new family. Usually, for this part to be reached we have to embark upon our own work on ourselves first

A person's power to fascinate or engage us may be in the perfect fit he provides for us to see where our own wounds or potentialities are. This is double synchronicity. Some people hit the target of who I am and where my work is. Some hit the bull's eye and my attachment grows accordingly. A liberation happens when the other is not taken literally but as a synchronous metaphor of our own past and our deep-buried yearnings for wholeness

Sometimes we feel unsupported by others. When our environment offers no nourishment we have to have this same skill of finding what we need from thin air. Our human enterprise has just such elegance

So What Is Synchronicity?

- Synchronicity occurs in the delicate balance between effort and aspiration. the balance is especially evident when we give up our attachment to outcomes and we notice the sudden arrival of serendipitous grace

- It is synchronicity when an image that has remained dormant in our imagination over the years suddenly and unexpectedly presents us with a meaning that appears at precisely the moment when it is most useful

- Synchronicity appears when a symbol that has been personally meaningful suddenly proves - or acts in accord with - its significance

- Synchronicity is the essence of timing, that mysterious readiness that occurs to defy our hesitation or control. It is the moment that can become momentum

- Synchronicity can appear as a string of similar experiences that show us where we may be one-sided and where our work on ourselves may be

- Synchronicity is the sudden remembrance of a personal history or series of events that reveal you to yourself or point to the next step of a path you are contemplating.
"Am I acting in accord with the reality of me or am i just doing what I always did or what everyone else does or what I am supposed to do?"

- Synchronicity appears in the fact that we choose life partners who bring up precisely the issues from our childhood past that have been waiting to be addressed so that we can lay our unfinished business to rest

3. Our Ego and its Coincidences

"The true person is not an isolated entity, his individuality is universal; for he individualizes the universe ... He individualizes divine transcendence"

The ego is functional/ healthy when it helps us fulfill our three main goals in life, that is happiness and serenity within ourselves, effectiveness in our tasks, and rewarding relationships

Our ego becomes dysfunctional / neurotic when it distracts us from our goals or sabotages them. Behind every neurosis is a fear or desire that has never been addressed or resolved. Neurotic means being caught is useless repetition of anarchic was of protecting ourselves against what no longer truly threatens us. We also repeat old habits of craving that do not lead to satisfaction

We know we are integrating ourselves effectively and are on a valid spiritual path when we become more functional in daily life

The self is a spiritual source as the healthy ego can be a psychological resource. The three qualities of self, unconditional love, wisdom, and healing power, are the ones that reflect the attributes of divinity in world religions. We speak of God as love, a Holy Spirit of wisdom, who has miraculous healing powers

That destiny is the same in all beings, but each person contributes in her individual way
Ego is visible in our personality and bears our name. It is unconditional love, eternal wisdom, and the power to heal ourselves and others

Our Human enterprise, individuation, is to form or find equilibrium, an axis, between ego and self. Both the ego - our conscious life of choices - and the self - our potential for wholeness - want to join in this axis of wholeness. All that stands in the way is the fear our ego has that it might lose its control and its identity. Our task is to activate our potentials, to make them conscious, that is, articulated in our lifetime

Our psychological work is to shape our ego so that it can function without inhibition on compulsion. Then our innate gifts and talents can enter the service of the self and commandeer our every thought, word, and deed into showing all the love, wisdom and healing we are capable of in our lifetime. The neurotic ego contravenes this work by its prejudice that we are separate, in control, and in no need of humility

The functional ego is the best vehicle for the emergence of the self, yet, by grace, neurotic ego too can be harnessed

Nothing less is required for spiritual growth than the total dissolution of the inflated ego. Half measures do not avail. Inflation is the habit of imagining and acting as if the whole purpose of life was one's own aggrandizement and the fulfillment of one's own entitlements. This means bringing attention only to our own needs, demanding to be in control, believing we are entitled to be served by everyone and to have the ordinary condition of existence repealed or relaxed for us because we are so special

The neurotic side of the ego is not meant to be destroyed but, paradoxically, to be expanded in its healthy humility so that it can extend its creative possibilities to all our psyche. It is liberated by being relieved of its arrogance and then opened to its potential to show power for rather than power over others. This is also our potential for bringing peace into the world and into our relationships. A hero is a person who lives through the pain of this process and is thereby transformed by it

the shadow is the part of us that is hidden and unconscious to us. Our negative shadow contains all that we find unacceptable about ourselves but disavow. We then strongly detest in others what we cannot see in ourselves. Our positive shadow holds our untapped potential. We admire in others what is buried and deactivated in us. Synchronicity, meaningful coincidence, happens when we meet up with just the people who activate our positive shadow gifts and our negative shadow traits. Both strong dislike and admiration are the projections we can reclaim

Healthy Ego: Resources: Observe, assess, act in accord with goals, make choices that reflect our deepest wishes and needs

Spiritual self: The source: Unconditional love, Perennial wisdom, Healing power

The source is within. I have to work at being who and all that I already am. Spiritual awakening involves letting go of such central themes:
- I become enraged, spiteful, and vindictive when I am thwarted, found to be in error, or bested (even in board games or sports)
- I have to win, cannot be second, and will not be last
- I have to be right, noticed, and praised
- I overreact to minor slights- I hold a grudge when crossed and have to get even
- I will not forgive or forget
- I insist on getting my own way most of the time- I find flexibility or compromise difficult
- I am controlling, demanding, manipulative
- I am abusive, sarcastic, territorial, possessive- I operate on a hierarchical (but cooperative) dominance model
- I demand that I be highly appreciated for every good deed
- I have to be excused for every misdeed, denying, or justifying my misbehavior and canceling any need for amends
- I cannot be criticized or even given feedback without becoming defensive or aggressive
- I cannot lose face, that is, lose ego, nor can I apologize
- I have to come out looking good
- I believe I am entitled to an exemption from conditions of ordinary existence
- I demand love, respect, and loyalty no matter what- I have to return a favor (keep it even, don't be beholden to anyone)
- I cannot show that I need others or that I am dependent on them in anyway- Retaliation is my favorite sport

Note the compulsive, aggressive - and painful - flavor of the above. In face, there is no peace when ego rules. It is aggressive because of its "me first" attitude. It is painful because the person with this neurotic ego is full of fear; feels terribly anxious about losing face

Here are some declarations that help alter the ego's compulsions. You can use them as aspirations, and they become a part of your spiritual practice
- I give up having to get my way
- I let go of controlling and manipulating others
- I am open to appreciation, understanding, and love and let go of demanding it
- I admit when I am wrong and make amends
- I invite others to call me on my mistakes
- I accept the fact that I do not always win or gain
- I ask for what I want without demanding it, and I can take no for an answer
- I am fully responsible for my behavior and predicament
- I forego the wish or plan to punish or hurt others
- I forego the desire or plan to retaliate
- I am becoming truer to my higher self, where unconditional love abounds
As I let my ego urges be dissolved, I discover and uncover my indestructible self

The ego is inflated when its main concern is saving FACE: Fear, Attachment, Control, and entitlement. Once we see how much of our creative energy we sink into saving FACE, we notice so many others doing the same useless thing and compassion happens

It seems that it is healthy not to care too much about others' opinions of us. It is only to say we have an immovable center of great value. A healthy ego sets these boundaries and maintains them. People and events that challenge and deflate our ego are assisting forces on our journey to the greatest of all synchronicities in human fulfillment. "The women who betrayed me, the boss who fired me, the son who turned against me, the friend who called me on my selfishness and the teacher who showed me how much I need to learn may all have been players in the touching drama of my uphill liberation from ego. Each helped me by giving me the opportunity to let go of my arrogant entitlements in favor of humility and vulnerability, the antechambers to the right people appeared at just the right time in just the right place is a dazzling synchronicity"

Our work is to display n our ego actions and choices the eternal design of the Self: Love, Wisdom, and Healing. Synchronicity's messages become louder as they are listened to. Psychic literacy is the ability to read these messages; spirituality is the choice to respond to them. They may come in synchronicity, dreams, intuitions, projection, psychic phenomena and readings, inner guides, events beyond our control, visions, sudden spontaneous powers, déjà vu, religious or mystical realizations, meditation/contemplation, and impetus from art or beauty, or active imagination

To say Yes is to let the Self take precedence over ego. The FACE of ego changes: Fear becomes love. Attachment becomes freedom. Entitlement becomes standing up for our rights without retaliation if they are not respected

Thus, a spiritual choice has two main characteristics. it expresses unconditional/universal love, perennial wisdom, and healing power, and it emanates from an unconditional yes to the conditions of existence

Awareness of our personal spiritual messages helps us ride the waves rather than be drowned by them.How can we know which messages are from the inner Self and which are merely fictions of the ego?1. True messages feel so strong and real, they feel as if they could not be otherwise.

One has a felt sense, an intuitive certainty that they are authentic2. Authentic messages arrive along more than one avenue, for example, not only in synchronicity but also in dreams and intuitions, etc.3. A true message does not submit to the ego's attempts to dismiss it4. Authentic messages move us in the direction of love, wisdom, and healing. They are never aimed at boosting our self serving ends of the ego

Appropriate spiritual choices find a resonance in nature. Our interpretation is correct when it leads to "Yes!"

We have certainly noticed in our own lives how persons and events keep coming along to dispose our ego's arrogance, to show us how little in control we really are, to strip us from our imaginary entitlements, to disrupt our best laid schemes. Such people and events are trickster visits to us, more assisting forces on our path

The trickster is the ego demolitions expert. He leads us to border crossings where we are tricked into finding our own wholeness. Comfort and routine are the two sworn enemies of our lively energy, and the trickster battles these enemies on our behalf. His visits may feel like plagues, but they are gifts in the long run
In each instance, someone, something, or some event turned your life upside down or showed you how vulnerable you were, how you were not all you cracked yourself up to be. Fear and desire are the calisthenics of the trickster ego, and the rough tools he uses to show the go its inadequacy

Humor, irony, and paradox are the milder transformative tools of the trickster, the transpersonal source of wit. A pretty face may be the trickster; alcohol and cocaine are the trickster. All of these can absorb our energy, direct our choices, fool us into mistakes, and lead us into desperate addiction and out of control behavior. We are seduced into believing that any of these can grant us permanent happiness or increase our personal stature. Indeed the trickster makes the same promises that Adam and Eve fell prey to when this whole human enterprise began

We all contain both arrogance and humility. When we are overly arrogant, their trickster may humble us. He makes our hidden humility conscious and visible. Then our arrogance becomes tamed and appears as healthy self esteem. The trickster will not allow one-sidedness but will arrange our circumstances so that our other side will have its chance to emerge

The trickster energy appears in unexpectedness, mischief, disorder, shock, or amorality. He balances rigid and righteous attitudes with humor and flexibility. He comes to the entrenched to release spontaneity and thus restore psychic balance, thwarts careful plans, creates inner and outer upheavals, induces or forces us into new arrangements, topples thrones and supplants the royal ego

The trickster transforms meaninglessness into meaningfulness, predicament into path, sterile voids into fertile pastures, stuckness into a way out, and ultimately death into life

In the course of life we are wise to be ready for many unexpected characters crossing our path. To believe that our ego provides all the support we need in those moments might be that most comical of all our human notions. To trust that grace wants to come our way may rouse a cosmic smile upon us

Try to locate the positive and negative hidden parts of yourself or of the events and people that have influenced you
- A treasure is lost or found: I have powers or riches but I am tricked out of them by promises or misplaced trust and thereby lose them
- I am humiliated by being bested by someone I thought was less than myself in skill or intelligence
- I am planning to quit in a huff when I'm fired
- I am shown to be quite fragile by my overreaction to a practical joke
- I think I am really loved by someone who wants only my money
- I am head over heels in love with someone and many synchronicities occur that seem to point to my having found my soul mate, yet all proves to be an illusion
- A visit from the trickster happens most often through personal crisis. This corresponds to the dismemberment experience of the hero, that is, the dismantling of the ego. We are broken up, we are forced to let go. The hero descends to the underworld to converse with sages and shamans and then ascends to converse with God. Through such symbolic death we are all likely to be reborn. the whole event is like the rope tri k in which the body ascends, falls to the ground in pieces, and is reassembled

If you feel that you are willing to work with trickster energy, try the following:
- Notice the humor in what you are feeling or sensing in any here and now
- Say yes to what is, like it or not
- Allow things to remain topsy-turvy for a day longer than you can stand
- Don't look for soft landings but allow yourself to land on concrete reality
- Learn from the surprises that come your way
- Welcome crisis as ego deflation, that is, your coziness has been addressed, processed, and resolved by the universe
- Invite the pain of change rather than avoiding it
- Have less self-importance
- Find a way of "playing with pain"
- Invent rituals that take you out of character
- Most of our daily routine is habit rather than creative design. Try forsaking your routine some day in order to be totally open to what might happen
- Go out of character. explore very different lifestyles or belief systems, try entirely new interests or careers, change personal habits and choices even briefly from fear-based to courage- based, from tight to loose, from inhibited to experimental, from no to yes

4. Our Time and Place

The fact that meaningful coincidences happen to us beyond our conjuring gives us evidence that we are not alone in the world. Rather, the world is wonderfully in on the fulfillment of our own life purpose

My role as a free being is to say Yes to the love that my ego is afraid of but that Self is made of

To be afraid of the ongoing tides of change is not trusting the oneness of the world of nature with our inner world. In both, consciousness and unconsciousness reveal our one life-affirming inclination toward Self-actualization, Grasping gets in the way of our seeing this because we grasp for something we believe we need that is outside us

Life, to be perfect, must be possessed altogether; there must be no past which is gone, no present which is going, no future which is to come. It must be permanent, abiding, full, and with succession. Life which would be past is lost life; that which is to come would not be life possessed; and that which is passing is life in decay

The rational ego experiences time. The inner self can experience time as timelessness. Synchronicity is a timely moment that takes us beyond th elimits of time

Since enlightenment can happen at any moment, time is so much more than a series of hours. It is the gate through which our mortality finds a way to meet up with eternity

To transform itself in us, the future enters into us long before it happens. Many psychic events do not occur instantaneously but undergo an incubation period in the unconsious. In synchronicity, we meet our future - or past - in our present

Nonetheless, things that matter take time. Impatience is a refusal to honor the built-in timing of events and human decisions or actions. Resistance is being unwilling to go with the tide or unreadiness for it. Timing is respect for the necessary incubation period that most transitions and changes require. The ego is not in control of how much time such processes may take. The revelation knows its own time and will only appear when it cannot possibly be mistaken for anything else. Every feeling has its own timing

No matter how suddenly something may come to pass, it brewed for a long time in silence before it frothed. Becoming nore loving, wise, and healing is a rebirth of Self from the ashes of ego. It is a gentle thing and it takes gentleness to allow it

The psyche is a wise system that knows just when to open to the world and when to close off from it. It knows how and when to be born or reborn and when to die. It is calibrated to external events and so synchronicities convene to support it in the direction of opening or of closing. Our healthy ego stabilizes itself through interactions, crisis, conflicts, and any ongoing traffic in the world. Introspection and meditation are the vehicles for the inward direction

Respecting timing means that we adjust to openings and closings. A fully human journey requires a visit to both those sides of the river of timeliness

There's a time to: --------------------------------There's a time to:
Take hold or hold on -----------------------------Let go
Fight --------------------------------------------Retreat
Take on more cargo ------------------------------Jettison cargo
Hold a hand --------------------------------------Let go of a hand
Jump to it-----------------------------------------Sit with it
Act on logic---------------------------------------Act on faith
Go for it------------------------------------------Wait for it
Enter or join -------------------------------------Make a graceful exit
Be involved---------------------------------------Be alone
Pull weeds (yank)---------------------------------Pick figs (tug)
Speak up -----------------------------------------Remain silent
Plan aheed----------------------------------------Be spontaneous
Kneed the dough----------------------------------Let it rise
Know---------------------------------------------Not know
Create anew--------------------------------------Repeat again
Break rules---------------------------------------Follow rules
Transcend boundaries----------------------------Honor boundaries
Show male/yang energy--------------------------Show female/yin energy
Use time industriously----------------------------Allow some idling
Feel whole----------------------------------------Feel fragmented
Reconstitute, resurrect----------------------------Fall apart, disintegrate
Make a choice-------------------------------------Take a chance
Achieve by effort----------------------------------Receive grace

The left is active; the right is receptive. Both sides have a gift dimension. Both are initiatory and consolatory. our ego makes us fear or feel ashamed of visits to the right side. We may trust only effort and activity. Is this what makes us more at home with changing things than with accepting things

Our psychological work requires effort: handling fear, practicing assertiveness; dealing with inner child issues; addressing, processing and resolving concerns in life and relationships; etc. Our spiritual practice requires effort: meditation, mindfulness, rituals, prayer, loving kindness and compassionate action, etc. These are the equivalent of kneeding dough. But for bread to result, there has to be a period of raising, in which work ceases and nature takes over. Thiis is the equivalent of grace, a force that takes over where will, effort, and intelligence leave off

Both effort and grace are necessary for personal integration - as both psychological work and spiritual practice are necessary for wholeness. effort is a choice; grace is a free gift, beyond our control or ability to predict. The muses are personifications of grace. Any writer knows that the muse cannot be seduced by our effort though we work hard anyway

Here is a chart that may help show the connection between effort and grace
Ego, Conscious, Existential
-Works personally by effort toward the goal of functioning optimally in relationships, in a career, and within oneself
-Leads to higher self esteem and effectiveness because we change
-Is told in our personal story
-Presents challenges to make things happen
-Is a cause that leads to an effect
-Is based on steps we take

Self: Unconscious, Essential
-Works spiritually by grace toword a destiny to release riches of love, wisdom, and healing into the world
-Leads into enlightenment because we are transformed
-Is told in myth and metaphor
-Asks only cooperation with what wants to happen
-Is synchronous symultaneity
-Is based on shifts that happen

Grace is the assisting force that helps the hero when he was nothing going for him but his limited ego. Grace is that which cannot be willed by ego; it is a free gift of God. We may instruct ourselves in knowledge using our intellect, but wisdom isi a gift. we may progress in spiritual practice, but enlightenment is a gift

Honest self acceptance is thus an opening to grace
1. At first we think becoming real/healthy/whole means being dutiful (go to school and follow ur conscience)
2. Soon we find it takes more than that. We have to confront our dark side
3. then we fidn out that we have to go into the belly of the unconscious, and be inventive enough to light a fire to help others live
4. Only then are we reborn from the dark, but we are still not real yet. We cannot achieve the final part of the transformation on our own
5. It is grace that makes us whole. Effort was not enough, not even heroic effort

An essential feature of grace is certainly timing, everything has a time to take place, and things work together during that time. Timing also means pacing. Our respect for our own timing makes it possible for us to track ourselves and process our life events. This is how we become conscious and gain a sense of personal power

Grace always enters the hero story at the moment when the time has come for the hero to acknowledge his inadequacy. As we find oursleves in pieces, a force comes to us that takes us beyond our own limits and enlarges us, that is, makes us whole. A hero story seems to require constant action, but within the struggle phase there's always a period of captivity, a phase that allows other forces to come into play

We think back on what we consider our wasted, unconcious years. Were they perhaps the rising of the dough, the necessary darkness? Were they the necessary pause?

Another threshold of grace is in the hero's sometime inability to perform the task at hand. there is a metaphor of how the psyche is sometimes unconscious of her powers. the ego is incapacitated because the Self is unready or asleep. Grace is the awakening of hidden powers. A legitimate part of the heroic struggle is containment. Sometimes the task is to hide or sleep. Ther ego's work is simply to sit, be take blindfolded, or be under spell. This is not wasted time, but the simmering necessary for the consomme to be ready

Quiet gaps seem ominous, boring, or lacking the adrelanine rush to which we are accustomed or addicted. We fear hacing no story, no identity if there is no dramatic excitement. Yet marvels happen best in the pause between plot development

"The keyto our deepest happiness lies in changing our vision of where to find it"

Asynchrony is the opposite of synchronicity. The time of events or opportunities is mismatched with safety, creativity, or positive results. Things do not work out because the time has not come. We may then become aware, through a series of negating coincidences, that this is the wrong time for ventures. Nothing works; doors keep closingl obstacles arise that are not challenges but blockades. If we fight on, we find oursleves involved in wars of attrition, forced to obey laws of diminishing returns. Accepting the givens of change and endings makes us aware that our time is almost up and we are ready for new options elsewhere

Asynchrony is also a challenge to the "any man can be president" ego inflating mentality that we may have inherited from public school. the danger is in the absolutizing of thos messages in such a way that trying hard becomes the only acceptable plan. It is sometimes true that effort is expedient. However, it is also sometimes true that letting go for now or for good is necessary. We were not meant to win all the time; we learn from losing too. For those in tune with the universe, messages will come to us in synchronicity, in dreams, and in inner images that reveals which is the appropriate path. It will not be based on maxims but on the maximum series of messages that point to a particular path

Asynchrony appears in relationships in a variety of ways. It is in the mismatching and incompatibility of some partners, in frustrating games of intimacy adn distance between partners. we may keep soing what does not work no matter how we try. We may stay in a relationship that cannot work no matter what we do. Asynchrony can appear when one partner fears abandonment so much that he continually clings while the other partner feels engulfed and goes away even more

Our own lives show interstices, especially in relationships. We endure pain with no possibillity of change, and when we finally believe we have a right to happiness and we move on, the pain becomes a path to personal growth

Paying attention is the first requisite for finding asynchrony. the second is letting go of the inflated ego belief that "it has to be my way" or the belief that "it has to be one way"

Practicing in time
1. Look at the time it took for you to work through the important issues in your life, to find solutions to the important questions, even to know the questions. Look at the time it took to meet the people who could teach you just what you needed to learn, especially in relationships

2. Our time is respected bt simmering. Her eis the test of time in the making of important choices: having to want something for thirty days straight before you trust that you really want it. How would your life be different if you had slept on all your important decisions in that way? Others have timing that may be quite different from yours and may frustrate you. You especially want those you love to move forward and be successful. You sometimes try to force them to move more rapidly than they choose to. Respect of others is shown in respecting their readiness or unreadiness. When someone seems ready and is choosing not to move ahead, it is not appropriate to force or push her, but to grieve and allow. Gentle encouragement, giving information once, and then a "hands off" policy may work best

3. In exploring asynchrony in your life now, do you notice that nothing works or fails into place, one dead end after another? Putting in all effort you can is a good rule. But when do you draw the line and say, "That's it. It's time to let go an dmove on"? These criteria of asynchrony may be helpful. Let go if your efforts:
- Are depleting you and destroying your self esteem
- Becoming dangerous or intrusive to others
- Feel forced - kicking against the goad
- Yield less and less
- Explode in your face over and over
- Prevent you from trying a whole new option that awaits you elsewhere
- Seem anarchronistic - no longer in character for you at this age or at this level of consciousness
- Are based on childhood messages of how you are supposed to succeed or be the strong - or weak - one no matter what
- Contradict the clear message of someone who is saying No to you in every way he can and you keep trying for a Yes
- Are based on wishful thinking rather than what the record shows

Apply the above criteria to something you are trying hard to accomplish: What are you trying to get your children , partner, friends, parents, or work associates to be or become? what are you trying to make yourself into? What are you pushing at achieving with no result? Is this stubbornness or intelligent effort? Ask for feedback from someone you trust

Asynchrony i soften unnoticed. Yet synchronous graceful exits have dignity. Here are some hints that help us to know when it is time to go:
- I give muh more than I receive
- I do more and more and see the success of less and less
- I feel that I am giving up something rather than giving and receiving something
- My health is suffering because of the stress of staying
- Even what I once liked doing - and can do well - is now flat, stale and uncomfortable
- I am no longer effective
- My bliss and enthusiasm are gone
- I no longer come up with creative ideas or even see alternatives
- I have been doing too much for too long for too little thanks
- I work on changing things but nothing gets better
- Things keep going wrong and never quite right themselves, no matter how much effort I expend
- I keep finding myself left with my finger in the dike
- The same ineffective pattern keeps repeating itself
- Money or prestige has become my central or sole motivation for staying
- I do not move on because I am afraid to risk a change
- I see no alternatives to what I have
- I doubt ever finding anything better than this
- I have no assisting foces encouraging me to stay

Does this apply to me in my job, relationship, commitments, etc? consider asking for help from someone you trust or in therapy. Not all the work can be done alone, or else why were we born into a world?

5. Fate or Destiny?

"We are dragged by fate to the destiny we refuse to walk toward upright"

Fate often allows a future to take shape with no regard for our expectation, plan or readiness

Each human project, lifetime, relationship, power bond, consilation, grief, etc., ha sits own lifespan. There is a sense something "greater than" myself that is at work beyond my control. this plan is my fate when I am at its mercy. it is my destiny when I join in with it with choice , consciousness, and cooperation. Synchronicity is what shows me where the thread is leading, how long it is, and who or what in my life is spinning it at the moment

What we refuse to bring into consciousness comes back to us as fate. It hits us from without when we refuse to head its summons from within. This is why it makes spiritual sense for us to forge a lasting agreement with the universe, which can only be an unconditional Yes to what is

there is a life long synchronicity in the link between our innate alents of gifts and our life work. our talents or gifts and our life work. Our talents bring us bliss when we follow them up with oractice. When bliss and talent comes together, we know what our vocation is and when we find work that pays our salary. In addition, in our career we meet other people with inclinations and fascinations like our own or from among them come lifelong colleagus, friends, or partners. it all works together in a synchronous way so that who we always were make who we are and will be one joyous and successful continuity. the synchronicity is complete when we feel grateful for the grace by which it all worked out and we feel a rise in spiritual consciousness

We gain a sense of fulfillment especially when we notice that our work is making a contribution to our family and to humanity in some way. This is how our inborn interests lead us to our destiny

As a member of this world, I have a unique contribution that no one else can make but me. The other people in my life and on the planet now have come to receive my gifts. they are also assisting forces in my self-discovery. our personal fulfillment requires a wider resource than just ourselves or our family

"We find our destiny on the path we take to avoid it"

The greatest of human tragedies is to be distracted from our destiny and lose our power to activate our potential because of years of stuckness, laziness, addictions, or relationships that are abusive, unworkable, or depleting and imprisoning. A great potential in us can thereby fade away, and no one does anything to halt the dissolution. There is no guarantee that a whale will intervene for us, as it did for Jonah. The challenge is to find our destiny in exactly what we are refusing to engage in

Some of our difficulty in finding out who we are and what we are called to be stems from toxic injunctions and imperatives that we introjected. We heard or imbibed perspectives from our parents and others that interrupt our self emergence. These may have taken the form of verbal messages that negated our power, beliefs that diminished or inhibited us, such as mages of what a man or woman should be. These are to be examined and scuttled if they do not serve us, if they disable us, or if they disempower us. Only those messages, beliefs, and images that animate our potential and release it are to be cherished an dmaintained. Obedience to self defeating messages, beliefs, and mages denies us the chance to be who we are. In such obedience we cannot love ourselves

Despair is the illusion that there is an inexorable fate that awaits our condition and our enterprises. Synchronicity tells us there is no such thing as an inexorable fate. Choices continue to arise and paths continue to appear even until the eleventh hour of a lifetime. Even if the path is to grieve an ending, the next step is to go on

Some people may find great successand seem to hit the target of their destiny in a career and all the while they wish it were otherwise. There are no guarantees in the enigmatic world of the Self

We realize that our wishes or even our choices or successes may give us no information about our real destiny. So how am I responsible if thins happen to me beyond my control or my will? We must not produce the "what is", but we are accountable for how we habdle it

How do we know what we want?
1. Some suggestions
- Tell those close to you what you feel within yourself and in reaction to them, no matter how embarrassing it may be
- If necessary, allow yourself to retreat from a distressing issue long enough to regroup your strenths. Then come back and face the music with a sense of personal power
- Pause to hold every feeling, cradling it, and allowing it to have its full career in you. Distractions and avoidances only conceal you from yourself. We learned early in life to overlook our authentic feelings so as not to "hurt the feelings" of others. this stop and hold method reverses that misguided self sacrifice
- Embrace this trple A program for handling fear: Admit your fear, Allow yourself to feel it, Act as if it were not able to stop or drive you

Some fears are bstacles to what you really want. Other fears are signals that you are attempting something that you do not want. How can you tell the difference? Simply let the record speak. Admitting fear reduces ego and ends isolation since the more deeply personal a deeling is, the more definitely will you trust that it is widely felt by fellow pilgrims

2. There is a connection between self knowledge and Self esteem.

Consider these three pegs of self esteem and how they fit for you
First: Act in the most loving way you can toward everyone
Second: Build a sense of acconplishment based on your doing all you can with your talents and potential. this will usually require discipline and patience as you work on gaining the credentials to do the work that can fulfill you
third: Grant yourself the freedom to act an dlive in accord with your deepest wishes and needs. This is the secretof finding out who you really are, free of injunctions and inhibition from childhood. Her eare some ways of knowing what your wishes and needs really are:
- Free yourself from inhibition and clinging and see what results
- Tell the truth about yourself. Self disclosure leads to self knowing
- Ask often for what you already know you want and gradually you will ask yourself - and others- for the deeper things
- Set boundaries in your relationships and you will know a great deal about yourself and your real needs. In a truly healthy relationship, you do not have to submerge, deny, or kill off any of your deepest needs and wishes
- Ask before each venture. Does this make me happy and give me a sense of fulfillment? notice how many years follow or how many nos
- What are you doing in life that flows from blissful choice, and what is based on a sense of obligation or habit? Resolution: " I will make no choices or promises that repudiate or discount my true needs and desires
- Look at the record. The history of what you have already done in the course of your life tells you more about yourslef than the fantasy of what you wish you had done or what you say you want
- If you acted with the highest level of consciousness, health, and spirituality, how would your life be different? The difference probably reveals what you truly want and need
- What you strongly admire in others may be what you want - and can accomplish too
- What you want for your children and best friends may tell you what you want
- Consider the ingredients of your present life, for example, relationship, housing, job, friends, dietm etc. Plot yourself on the following spectrum to see just how much your choices reflect your real wishes. More from dislike to indifference, interest, enthusiasm, excitement
- Make an inventory of your fears, On the other side of the coin of fear is an excitement/risk that unlived. There lie our disenfranchised feelings, wishes and needs
- Where do your dreams and synchronicity lead you? Respond to each of the entries in the above list, noticing which feelings, wants, and needs come through most frequently

3. Look at the major life choices you have made regarding destiny not as something forced upon you but as something consciously sought

"There is no room for chance in the meaningful world of the psyche"

chance is the unpredictable, unexpected, uncontrollable, and unknown element in events that surprises us happily or shocks us unhappily. It has no explanatory cause. It is a random event in that there is no recognizable pattern or plan behind it

Synchronicity takes chance occurrences and relates them to our destiny by the meaningfulness that emerges from or because of them. this is how synchronicity goes for higher stakes than mere chance or only luck

Chance or luck is mere coincidence, that is, synchronization. Synchronicity is meaningful, life affecting, destiny promoting, spiritually encouraging coincidence. What makes chance into synchronicity is the consciousness in us of the vaster design that is unfolding. Chance and luck are the escorts of synchronicity when we greet them with attention

Chance or luck are often the words of those who do not honor or believe in spiritual consciousness. there is a way out of our moral world, but thankfully, there is no way out of teh spiritual world

The challenge is always the same: to believe in the meaningful design in spite of the random display. The record shows us humans to be crassly ignorant and destructive but also touchingly responsive and restorative

Is synchronicity a form of superstition? Superstition is an irrational belief in a cause/effect connection when there is none in reality. Synchronicity is based on a reason transcending meaning, not an irrational belief

Astrology is another rich form of synchronicity in its stucy of the direct and meaningful coincidence between the layout of the stars and the blueprint of our lives

"The call may have been more like gentle pushings in the stream in which you drifted unknowingly to a particular spot on the bank. Looking back, you sense that fate had a hand on it"

6. Conditions and Crises

The conditions of our human existence can be embraced with acceptance or opposed with rebilliousness. A healthy adult accepts conditions when it is clear that they are irreversible. At the same time, he also may struggle to change a particular condition if it yields to change. Grace provides the wisdom to know the difference

Given: I am alone in facing the great life events, including death. I may have support but no rescuer
Childish reactions: I fell the aloneness with externals so as not to feel it fully, or I respect a rescuer
Adult response: I stay with myself and focus on what is and open myself to support if it comes my way

Given: All is transistory and changing. Nothing satisfies permanently
Childish reaction: I fixate: holding on, becoming addicted, clinging, controlling. I kepe trying to hold back the hands of time
Adult response: I stay with the normal stages: rise, crest, decline, realign, let go

Given: Life is unpredictable
Childish reaction: I seek safe harbors and creditudes, trying to build dikes or dams
Adult response: I allow it all to unfold just as it is

Given: Suffering is part of life: both physical and emotional life is not always fair
Childish reaction: I am entitled to immunity. I am exempt from the law of averages. I deserve special treatment
Adult response: I accept what cannot be changed; I attend to what can be changed

Given: Sometimes we willbe faced with more than we can handle
Childish reaction: I am comforted by the belief that punishment of evil and reward of good will happen now or later
Adult response: I accept that things are not always fair while working for justice

Childish reaction: I will never have more to face than I can handle
Adult response: I accept that some things are too big for me to handle

Only alone do I find my unique path. Only with others do i learn to cooperate, accept, and give support, and see the limits of what can be expected from others
Only in a transitory world do I transcend time for the timeless
Only in an unpredictable universe do I expend all the effort I can muster
Only in suffering do I make contact with my inner resources of strength and become compassionate
Only in a world in which I may be powerlessover injustice do I strive for justice in any ways i can achieve it
Only when i face things too big for my level of strength do I open to grace and thereby stretch my powers

The givens of life have been variously referred to as "Adam's curse", the will of God, or simply the human condition. They are universal in that no one is exempt from them or immune to them

In reality, these givens are percisely what it takes for us to be and become who we are. Confounding realities like aloneness, the suffering of the just, the pain required for growth, etc., cease to be questions when our spirituality is founded on a stabilizing trust in the aptness of these conditions for our evolution. Sunch confidence is the trusty horse on which we ride out the chaotic times in life. The conditions of existence are meant to be like weather conditions. If I live in a house witha sturdy roof, walls, and a foundation, I can let the storms come and I still abide safely

The conditions of our existence. Each is a synchronicity since each is connected to a discovery: without aloneness, I never would have found the vast inner world of wisdom and healing power within me. If what I see and desire were not transitory, I never would have looked beyond or through the persons and things in my life to contact the tanscendent. If all were predictable, my eyes would never be opened by surprises, by the unexpected, by serendipity. Without suffering I would never have found my inner resources, never have felt the grief that gives me depth and character, never have opened my heart to compassion. If things were always fair, I would have no motivation to recognize and handle the shadow in myself and others in creative ways. This is how the givens of life can be ingredients of wholeness and gifts of grace

It is synchronicity that we have healthy responses in us that match the very conditions with which we are confronted

Religion is designed to respond to the givens of existence. there is consulation in the belief that the immediate, existential experience is not the whole reality

A person of faith has to ask himself if he seeks the consolations of God or the God of all consolation who often does not console but allows him to face the givens baldly and boldly

We seem so often to be fearing and avoiding the very conditions that give us sensitivity and character. Our ego experiences life through the cycles of fear and craving instead of the cycles of letting go and going on. Once we realize that all is impermanent, there is nothing to grasp, cling to, or ocntrol, and there's no one to do the clinging

A psychological synchronicity comes to our aid and allows our disappointments to be integrated with our built-in ability to grieve and let go. There is also synchronicity in the spiritual path of egolessness in that it offers us the skillful means to avoid becoming attached in the first place

Learning to appreciate each phase of a flower's life - from but to death - is a way of expanding our sense of impermanence to acknowledge the beauty in each of its changes rather than only in one

How what happens helps?
One of the conditions of existence is that sometimes we will be faced with more than we can bear. There is a capacity in the human psyche to handle the conditions of its existence. Our innate capacities can be developed as programs of skill to deal with aloneness, unpredictability, unfairness, transitoriness, suffering, etc. We do notice times when we cannot handle what happens and are devastated by it. We can fall apart in those moments and still trust that eventually we will recnstruct our fragmented pieces and go on. The grace will be about that and about assurance that our capacity to love will not be destroyed no matter what

The unconditional Yes that allows us to be defense-less releases our lively energy that makes us resourcefull. Everything that happens to us, every person who comes along in our lives, every success, failure, betrayal, or loyalty is meant not to debitate us but to empower us. Healthy people have made peace with that. We cannot be in full control, but we can have a program, a plan, a technology to deal with the things that happen to us. Experience and crisis that come to us in synchronous ways are meant to deepen us and to show us our path. When we have no program, we lose the options. We have safe passage but no threshold to cross. We survive but may fail to evolve

We sometimes face the crisis of indicision. Then we should get the opportunity for the practice of pausing. I am not stuck but released when i go willingly into this gap. I am released from my ego's dualisms. As I trust this space and relax into it, something will automatically change and I will know my next step with intuitive ease. The crisis of "no way to decide" turns out to be a luminous space

Our life is not a sequence of events with no purpose. Transformation happens to us by our handling of the givens of life. The whole narrative of our life is then an integral experience of movement from darkness to light, from confusion to clarity, from isolation to communion

When we open to our larger meaning of our lifetime and see it as a contribution to the collective human journey, we are living in the heart of the universe. When we appreciate the graces that come to us to make this happen and the love that wants us to find ourselves, we are joyously alove. The journey has three stages: departure, struggle, and return with gifts

"At the center of the universe is a loving heart that continues to beat and that wants the best for every person. Anything that we can do to help foster the intellect, spirit, and emotional growth of our fellow human beings is our job. Those of us who have this particular vision must continue against all odds. Life is for service"

The tools of the healthy ego. Each provides a way of going on. These are strategies to face the givens of our lives. None of these programs include drugs, food, sex, or other compulsions. None of them resorts to silver-lining consolations that are not true and that contradict the conditions of existence. Examples of such consolations are: "Well, I always did my best." No one always did her best throughout her life, nor is that to be expected. "Things will always work out for the best." Things will not always work out for the best, as wars and genocides have shown. "It is karma." This is a deterministic use of the concept of karma that may serve to excuse us from adult responsibility for our actions. "God will provide." Provision for human needs will not always happen, as starving children learn each day. We have to provide for ourselves - and others - in many ways

Healthy tools for facing life predicaments may include the following:
1. when I am afraid, I can admit my fear, allow myself to feel it fully, and then act as if the fear could not stop me. the more I relax into reality rather than run from it, the more do the fears - that have been my unwelcome companions all my life - finally let me go

2. If I am angry, I can express it responsibly and directly to the person involved without blame or violence

3. If I am passive in my interactions with others, I can learn to be assertive and to stand my ground without becoming aggressive

4. When I suddenly feel fragmented and depressed because my life seems to have been a waste, I can imagine a kindly voice inside that says, "It's not so bad as I am making it out to be. Let me look at all I have done, both positive and negative. I made some mistakes, but everyone does. What matters is that I have gone on and know better now. Give myself some credit

5. In the void - the black hole of panic in which nothing works and our lively energy is on hold - we can simply stay in the suspense, without having to do anything. We can let it be and listen to its eerie silence until we feel an impetus to move in some new direction. The timing is never from ego but from the Self's calendar of synchronicities

6. If I feel guilty, I can make amends and resolve to change my behavior for the ture

7. If someone says something cruel to me, I may be tempted to resort to the ego's program of retaliation. Instead, I can declare to the other how hurt I am to hear that and how it is unacceptable to me to be spoken to in that way. I let go of the need to retaliate, I choose to handle things creatively and strongly but kindly too

8. If I am betrayed by a partner, I can resort to the ego's armory and defent myself against further hurts by putting up a wall against future relationships. Such self-defense walls me in. Suddenly passion goes out of omy life as do my chances for pleasure and fulfillment

It is stressful to maintain a repression of the natural human instinct to bond. Wholeness means giving free rein to all our instincts. Healthy people are willing to love again, ready to risk the same disasters they faced before, because they have found a resource for future reference. Griefwork is the program for dealing with betrayal and abandonment. Those who have grieved and let go will choose new partners more wisely and be more psychologically nimble in their grieving the next parting, if that were to occur

9. Sometimes we will have to face something that is too big for us to handle alone. Then our program is to seek help. In a psychological crisis, I may need to consult a therapist to help me design a program that meets my needs with a healthy resource.

Becoming healthy does not mean that painful things no longer haooen to us but that we now have waus of handling whatever may happen

10. The given of injustice may make us wonder why the innocent suffer. But this presumes that suffering is a punishment for evil. In the world of the loving Self, there is no punishment, only consequences and opportunities for transformation. To wish that the wicked will suffer is ego-vengeful. To work for their transformation is loving. Am I creating hell on earth or heaven on earth?

11. We should be liberated from Ego's excessive desire for positive experiences and terror of negative ones: gain and loss, fame and infamy, praise and blame, pleasure and pain

12. It is only when I have the courage to face things as they are, without any self deception or illusion, that a light will shine from events, and a path to contentment will open for me. Since all predicaments teach and awaken me, I can be grateful to them all. I do not push my predicament away; I find a way to lean on it. I choose to have no escape hatch. My Yes is unconditional. By the power and truth of this predicament, may all beings have happiness and be free of fear and craving. May I never destroy anyone's happiness. May all people keep choosing the path of peace and cherish all that lives as holy. Everything that happens to me is from a sacred heart, a light that will not go out, something unfolding and enfolding. I say Yes to the path with heart

13. Here's a summary model for healthy, functional responses to the conditions of existence
- Deal with aloneness by building a support system
- Deal with transitoriness by letting go
- Deal with unpredictability by trusting synchronicity
- Deal with Suffering and unfairness by accepting what cannot be changed and changing what can be changed

We can admit that even the healthiest ego may be powerless to effect certain changes in the psyche. On it's own the ego cannot love or forgive unconditionally, or give itself away in compassionate generosity. These are callings from a spiritual source that not everyone will hear

14. The hero leaves where he is, grows through many struggles, and meets up with assisting and afflicting forces, and finally finds a treasure that he brings back home and shares with all people around him. Some understand him and some do not. He doesn't force nor does he give up. he keeps sharing his gifts in any way he can


A friend rejects us. A partner leaves us. A company fires us. A loved one unexpectedly dies. We are devastated and at a loss as to what to do about these givens that have come our way. In such crises we are frightened as well as grief stricken. We are finding out that our sources of security had no real foundation
Our trust is based on the fact that the healthy ego has the skill of restoration, This is being transformed by pain
Logic and making sense of things are usually impossible to achieve in crisis
In a breakdown, it is normal to experience runaway feelings. Anger may keep flaring up uncontrollably; sadness may lead to crying jags; fear may lead us to be phobic about almost everything and even superstitious or paranoid. Obsessive thoughts may plague us. All of these are normal when they are phase appropriate; they are characteristic of the first-blush reaction to overwhelming crisis. When we are basically functional, they end as we move toward acceptance and resolution. In a neurotic character structure, the inappropriate feelings, behavior, and thoughts hang on indefinitely
Suffering softens us when we allow it, bear it, and then move on. The allowing is letting go of control. The bearing is letting go of seeking an escape. The moving on is not becoming stuck in being a victim. We then see the crisis as not quite so bad
Negatives are necessary in an equation if one is to find the positives on the other side

No comments:

Post a Comment