This title is a line taken from the movie, Solaris, hence the quotes. It carries a lot of intention. It really changes the way one can approach life challenges and opportunities. When you approach situations from the vantage point of desire to solve something you see as a problem its a very different state of being than the vantage point of choice. This idea is something I learned in my training with the Sente Center, where I trained for a decade in energetic perception. To make a choice is to carry an intention. When you do that, you conjure change from your core. It may take awhile for the physical universe to manifest the change. It will do so as it can. But you can feel the change almost immediately. This is no trifling thing. But then, I’m also not talking here about choices made only from the head up. I’m talking about choices that you make with your entire being, such that everything lines up with it. Those are the choices you make when there is no inner conflict.
Margaret Wheatley, in an interview about her most recently published book1, said something that really struck me. She said, “When you see someone perform a miracle, they’re actually showing you how the world works.” Hearing this, was an “Ah-Ha” moment for me. Not that I’ve seen anyone perform what I would call a miracle, but still, I resonate with what she’s highlighting.
Our rational minds narrow down the field of possibility, and our beliefs are governed by what we “think” is possible, yet clearly seemingly miraculous things do occur. The definition of the word miracle is:
1: an extraordinary event manifesting divine intervention in human affairs
2: an extremely outstanding or unusual event, thing, or accomplishment
3Christian Science : a divinely natural phenomenon experienced humanly as the fulfillment of spiritual law
If something happens outside or beyond our sense of reality and what’s possible, we apply the idea of “God” to it. OK…this gets sticky, and I don’t want to step on anyone’s religious toes here. But the point here is that life is larger and more things are possible than we know. We often attribute to “God” anything that is outside of what we think is possible.
Our culture has created wonderful things, and some memorable, worthy ideas, but its also created a world of many unfulfilled, frustrated, conflicted, and emotionally impoverished people. Many of us are overwhelmed with negative views, and concerns that seem to not have active traction in the choices we make. We may feel that those in power control and manipulate things always in their favor. We ask,”what can I do, as a single individual?” But here’s the conundrum: We are less than we think and more than we know. HA!!!!
The irony is that our culture has so developed this idea of the individual that we have lost touch with the larger truth that we are embedded in nature, in life. We are not alone though there are many who are indeed lonely. We are steeped in a kind of isolationist tea that has us ill equipped to function well in groups except those who’ve undergone boot camp, or similar kinds of hard-core group training. But the thing is, humans are, by nature, social creatures, tribal creatures. It takes a serious effort to teach us otherwise. And, it takes courage and fortitude to go against the waves of culture that surround us and tell us what we supposedly are – even if we don’t agree with the meta-messages we’re being influenced by. Its a catch-22, of sorts.
It is my deep-seated belief that we must learn more of who and what we really are. Westerners, in general, have been extremely externalized psychologically. We Americans, in particular, look everywhere but within ourselves for the source of our misfortunes. We blame. We expect. And, we project on to others what we have not come to terms with within ourselves. As Gandhi said it, “We have to be the change we want to see in the world.”
Think about when you’ve been crystal clear about a choice, and what that felt like, how it created change for you. It seems to me that we Western Culture people waste our precious time here on earth making many meaningless choices and ignore, deny and/or avoid making the substantive choices that are available to us. And, if we could notice the choices that almost don’t feel like choices because not one scrap of inner conflict is there, what a difference our experience would be! It’s so smooth and of-a-piece that it feels like the most natural thing in the world. I’m not talking about the “feel good” habits here, I’m talking about the choices you make because there was no “no” present in any of the layers of one’s psyche. These are, perhaps, the rare but pivotal choices we make that defines one’s life.
When I think in these terms, there are just a few of those I’ve made over my 60 years of life. One of those, to share a very personal moment, was when, after 7 years of trying to become pregnant, and almost one year of trying to adopt, my ex- husband and I met the parents of twins still in their mom’s belly, who were up for adoption. It, admittedly, was an unusual situation. These young parents were pregnant with their second set of twins in 18 months! We flew to Little Rock Arkansas to meet these people. They asked if we would consider adopting just one of them, and I immediately said, “No”. It was so simple an answer. And, although it was a “no” for me, it was, ironically, a “yes” in disguise. It was a “yes” to the idea that twins come in together and are meant, ideally, to grow up together. Also, it was clear to me that there were some conditions under which I would choose not to be a parent. There was no inner conflict in me about this idea. So, even though Paul and I went through a significant grieving period over this (because the parents decided not to put the kids up for adoption after all), there was a blessing nestled within the whole circumstance. We could feel that, even in our grief.
This sort of choice, brings everything into sharp focus. Values become clarified. The choice is made for now and all time. Things will change, of course, so whatever circumstances set up the choice is a one-time thing, truly. But the choice you make is so thorough, deep and wide and true that it carries that sort of gravitas immediately, though it may not manifest all the ramifications for a long time.
It has been my experience that choices are generative. Choices made at this profound level further life in some creative way. I’d love to hear any stories you may have about this idea, and what your own personal moments of choice were and what they have rendered.
“The world is not a problem to be solved; it is a living being to which we belong. The world is part of our own self and we are part of its suffering wholeness. Until we go to the root of our image of separateness, there can be no healing. And the deepest part of our separateness from creation lies in our forgetfulness of its sacred nature, which is also our own sacred nature.” Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee2
- Margaret Wheatley, HOW DOES RAVEN KNOW? Entering Sacred World – A Meditative Memoir. Quote is from an interview…
- Joanna Macy and Molly Brown, Coming Back to Life, New Society Publishers, Canada, 2014, pg.26.
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