Saturday, November 12, 2005

A Wink From the Cosmos

The other day, I was searching the internet for some information on a counselling workshop that I am presenting in a couple of weeks and came across a poem that struck a familiar chord, though I couldn't recall where or when I had seen it. It didn't seem applicable to the workshop at the time. So I read it, enjoyed it, and moved onto another site without "bookmarking" it or consciously remembering the title of it. However, the visuals from the words had stuck with me. The message, about the desire to delve past the superficiality of "small talk" with someone in order to reach a depth of understanding and trust, was exactly what I was looking for. What had I been thinking not to copy the poem down?

As I continued on with other activities, I tried to conjure up the title-- something that would lead me back to the errant website. And it was during one of those activities that I received a wink from the cosmos. In the background on the radio, the host was introducing a guest who had written a poem that had resonated with many people through books and on the Net. All of a sudden, my home was filled with the words I had been wanting to find again.

How does one explain those moments? You're thinking about something, and then wham an outside event ties right in with your thoughts............ They happen all the time don't they?
Do they happen to you?

  • You're out cutting the lawn thinking about someone whom you havent heard from in a while. A little while later when you're inside, the phone rings. When you pick up the receiver you hear the voice of the person you were wondering about.
  • All morning as you are getting dressed for work, a song is stuck in your head. You rush around frantically getting organized, jump in the car, turn on the ignition only to find the song playing on the radio.
  • You have a vivid premonition of a future event. A week later, it occurs just like you had envisioned it.
  • A loved one has just passed away. In your grieving, you quietly ask for a sign to know that there is some kind of an ethereal connection. You look out the window and spot your loved one's favourite bird perching on the tree quietly........

Synchronicity.....................a wink from the cosmos..............a bit of guidance from the Big Kahuna perhaps?

Carl Jung, who coined the termed synchronicity, described three variations on the "alignment of universal forces."
  1. Coinciding thought or feeling with an outside event.
  2. A dream, vision or premonition of something that happens in the future.
  3. A dream, or vision that coincides with an event that is occuring at a distance.
Synchronistic moments happen to me often, though sometimes I am more aware of them occuring. In fact, if I am open to the idea that "things happen" without my control and for a reason that is beyond explanation, they happen more often. This week has been like that. One after another............all eye on the back of the neck raising.
The whole process of counselling, engaging with another individual at a deeper level, allows for more opportunities to experience these moments, if one is open to it. There have been countless encounters that have made me stop and acknowledge that there was a bigger more personal reason why I was meeting with a client than the problem being dealt with at hand. Often, I had been ruminating about a topic or an issue. The next client whom I happen to meet is either working on the same issue, or has the answer to the question I had been pondering.

James Redfield, the author of The Celestine Prophesy wrote a list of "insights" to explain the process of mysterious energy that lead us to answers that we may be pondering. One the insights he entitled: Engaging the flow -- We have a question, then dreams, then daydreams and intuitions lead us toward the answers which are usually synchronistically provided by the wisdom of another being.

Are the appearance of synchronicities in your life signs of guidance? Do they seem to happen more often when you're intensely caught up in something emotionally or intuitively? Yes.

Can they be explained scientifically? Statistically? No.

Synchronicities help us become more aware of our universal connectedness. We are not alone. We don't need to have all the answers to life's questions. If we are patient and open to the possibility that the answers will come in time, confident in our perceptual intuitions, a wink or a nod will often be provided.

Probably my most profound synchronistic moment struck me when I had just started my journey backpacking through Europe. I had been levelled with a feeling of homesickness that I had never experienced before. It was so intense that I didn't know if I could carry out my dream. One evening, my best friend and I chose to eat at a restaurant in Barcelona that had been recommended in a travel guide. Despite the fact that it was "off-season" the place was packed with fellow travellers, who obviously had the same guide! Within minutes of sitting down and placing our order, I overheard a voice and a laugh that was familiar. I knew right away it was a person whom I had worked with at a summer camp and who had also been my Camp Counsellor when I was young. I perked up and started looking around, thinking that I was crazy to believe that I would know someone in this restaurant. About 15 minutes after I heard the voice, however, I looked over and saw the person slip out of the restaurant. I leapt out of my chair and ran out into the street after her, calling her name. She turned with a look of surprise on her face, shouted my name with glee and gave me a warm much needed hug. It had been 8 years since we had worked together and yet here we were reuniting on the streets of Barcelona on a cold January night. I knew right away that I was going to find my "sea legs." It was a sign. I was going to be alright.

Two months later, full of confidence in myself and joy in living out my dream, I walked into a pensione in Rome. Sitting alone in the front foyer was a young fellow Canadian traveller looking lost and sad. Without hesitation, I went over to him and sat down to find out if he was alright. He admitted to feeling overwhelmed with homesickness. Knowing personally the importance of connecting with home somehow, I started by asking where he was from. Turned out, he was from my hometown. Turned out, he and I had gone to the same highschool. Turned out, he knew my younger sister. The more we talked, the more he smiled, and the more I realized that I was involved in a synchronisitic moment. I was his sign. More importantly, he knew that I was his sign that his journey too would continue with confidence. The next day when I saw him at breakfast, I left him with my story and encouraged him to pass his newly acquired confidence along.

Some believe that the winks point the way to an unfolding of our personal destinies. Some say that a synchronicity happens when God wishes to remain anonymous. I will receive those inexplainable winks from the cosmos, recognize them as an opportunity to know that I am a part of a universal sense of connnectiveness. I will recognize the nod as a means to help me find inner harmony--to continue to understand my destiny. It sure is good to know that the Big Kahuna's out there watching over us. Nudge, nudge, wink, wink..........say no more.

"The intellect has little to do on the road to discovery. There comes a leap in consciousness, call it Intuition or what you will, the solution comes to you and you don't know how or why." Albert Einstein

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