Is life really just about random coincidences?
Are there such things?
Or is there a greater plan
to this mystery we call life?
“There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.” ~ William Shakespeare
My patterns story - following the breadcrumbs - getting used to synchronicity
There was a time in my life when I was grieving, in deep sorrow, I could not think clearly, and felt that life had lost its purpose.
And then synchronicity struck. Synchronicity - the way God, The Universe, the world speaks to you.
When my life collapsed in my early 40s I thought “this is it!” The end. Actually the story began a couple of years earlier, as it so often does.
I began my own healing journey when a few years after my 40th birthday I had what some may call a mid-life crisis. But this one I had been warned about. At the time I was running a hotel in Northern Scotland which I owned with a business partner. One evening an American woman booked a table for dinner for herself and two gentlemen friends.
At the end of the meal she told me that unless I "awoke" and "paid attention" then within a year I would lose everything and it would only be when I was on a "cold slab" in a local hospital, in agony, and on my way "out" I would hear a doctor say "we are losing him" and I would find myself in a tunnel of light being given a choice to "go home" or stay and do the work I "promised" to come and do this life round.
Now in those days, I didn't understand those terms, they were sheer gobbledygook, or so I thought, and so I promptly ignored this prophet of doom! Such was my lack of humility and consciousness at the time. But Spirit, the Universal Creator, has a way of getting our attention, and if we don't heed the small signs, then we sure will sit up when the big whammy hits.
And so a year later, in the space of one week, having ignored a year of small signs, when whammy well and truly whacked me, it happened - I lost my life partner, my business partner, some family and friends, my business, my wealth (through another's dishonest dealings), my lifestyle, my home, and, yes, my health. And yes I did find myself on that slab. And I did enter a tunnel of light and no it was not an MRI scanner.
And the "prophet" in question , I discovered a year later, was none other than medical intuitive Caroline Myss who subsequently influenced my entry into the world of healing, spirituality, energy medicine and related fields. I am forever grateful to her for having had the courage to share with me “the message.”
A short while later, post-whammy, I was co-facilitating a course in Sussex and my health at times was still a struggle. My co-tutor said she would cover for me and I should wander in to town and, as she said, "Look at the sky!" I did so, and whilst passing a travel agent in the town square, and as it happened looking at the sky, I had such an overwhelming urge that I went in and asked if the agent could find me seven days away leaving the following night. I ended up in Turkey.
Waiting for the flight at Gatwick airport, I went to the bookshop in the departures lounge. I had a sense of saying to “someone” – I wasn’t quite into spiritual speak yet – “I am in a hurry. Just show me some books.” I espied one book with a big rainbow heart on it and put it in my basket. It meant nothing to me. I didn't even stop to flick through the pages. One more jumped out at me. And then I purchased a magazine, the only one on a small stand by the pay till.
I headed for the flight and once seated I took out my purchases. One book was “You Can Heal Your Life” by Louise L Hay. The title sounded good, the author to me unknown. But I thought it interesting that is the one I should “choose!” I flicked through the magazine and on page two was a half page advertisement with the big coloured heart - “Train with Louise L Hay – and You Can Heal Your Life!” This is not coincidence; it is far too random. I now thought it best to look at the second book; it was, “A Host of Voices” by Doris Stokes, medium and psychiatric nurse. Again the theme of healing was present and now the notion of inner listening, of clairaudience. Now at that time I had no real knowledge of the healing arts and certainly not of mediumship.
I arrived at my Turkish hotel in Olu Deniz about 2am, got to bed about 3 and fell into a
An hour later, I awoke abruptly to blue flashing lights in the corner of my room. I suddenly
had a vision of Doris Stokes and I both saw Doris and heard her say, “Everything’s changing
for you. Be open to healing and to mediumship.” She was impressing upon me the need to
start listening, just as Caroline had said, to waken up, as Caroline also said, and accept that I
had a role to play in healing, not just myself but others. I went to the corner where I had seen
the flashing lights and there on the floor was my copy of “A Host of Voices” which earlier
had been on my bedside table.
By the time I returned to the UK, and having experienced a few more synchronistic events, I felt
an energy I had never before experienced, I knew my life had turned a corner, and there was a
purpose – health, healing, and connecting with Spirit.
Now some may call all that coincidence; I prefer to call it, synchronicity. Or following the breadcrumbs as Henri Juntilla would say.
What is synchronicity?
It’s so easy to get caught up in fear, anxiety, and grasping attachment to what
we believe we want and how we think the world runs and should run. And
when we don’t get what we want, we throw hissy fits and stomp about, huff
and puff, and become even more obsessed on wanting it, we start to believe we
have the personal power to control things.
How mistaken. How deluded we are. We really have no control whatsoever.
Only choices. And it doesn’t have to be this way, of thinking we control life
and it’s only about the way we believe it to be.
Let’s be radical, for some at least.
What if there were a Divine plan (just asking!) and what if you were being guided (just saying!), just not in the way you expect to be guided, but through signs and signals, like those I’ve just mentioned, things you notice, music you hear, people you bump into. What if that were the way you’re guided through life? You’d still have free choice so you can still say “bullshit” and “bollocks” and “no to that way!”
But what if? Just what if? What if things were not run the way you and your mind think?
Sure it’s your life - your choice. But you are not here alone. All our energies merge, we are interdependent. Some would say we are all of the one energy. A philosophy as old as time yet for many, almost too radical to contemplate.
But the message is simple: Everything is connected. You might not understand how or why right now. The "why" is not what’s important. What’s important is that things are invisibly connected. And there is purpose and there is reason in even the most seemingly random and unimportant things around you.”
And this “way of life” will make itself known if only you’re willing to be open and trust the process, a process which shows up as Synchronicity, and sends you messages all the time if only you but knew and could give it your attention, a process which follows natural ways, based on natural and spiritual laws – and therefore being natural, can never be wrong.
So just asking, how open can you be to the possibility that life unfolds not in your way but in its way?
What would happen if you could just, without the need for tinkering and interfering, or willing synchronicity to happen, “Let Go, Let God” however you understand the G word? How would life be if you gave up any need to control or have pre-determined outcomes?
How will you follow the path laid before you?
The term synchronicity was coined by Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung (1875-1961). Jung had a strong belief in a wide variety of paranormal phenomenon, including psychic powers, astrology, alchemy, predictive dreams, UFOs and telekinesis (moving objects with the mind). He was also obsessed with numerology — the belief that certain numbers have special cosmic significance, and can predict important life events.
Synchronicity is a beautifully orchestrated "happen chance" that occurs and is in perfect alignment with your thoughts or ideas. For example, you might be thinking about someone you haven't seen in years on your way to the mall and while shopping you bump into that person, that is a synchronicity! Often mistaken as coincidences, these amazing synchronicities are universal nods, confirming that you are on the right track.
Synchronicities can also be road signs that help steer you on to the right track if you are feeling confused or lost in some way.
A synchronicity is more than just a coincidence, it is divine providence and a hint from the cosmos that there is more going on than meets the eye…
They are events that happen when the universe is trying to tell you something, just as a signpost or mile marker would give you information while travelling in a car. The flash of a speed camera says, "Slow down" or even "Stop this rushing behaviour." A message for your life perhaps?
The Universe is always willing and waiting to show you something wonderful. Synchronicities bring to light information for your waking consciousness along with your sub/unconscious aspects of your selves gently guiding and directing you to what is in alignment with your own personal growth. I had no conscious desire, intent, or awareness of becoming a healer, I was too busy saying, “Who? Me? I could never etc etc!”
Synchronicities whisper into your soul, "Expect the unexpected!" This is a time to listen carefully when your soul whispers, for the language, lessons, and methods are sometimes very subtle. But you can learn to hear and to listen by developing your intuition and strengthening your internal hearing.
And although you have free will, there are times, as I’ve indicated, when synchronicities happen that one cannot ignore. Books or videos may come to you seemingly "out of the blue" that fit in with what you’re learning now, is a current theme in your life, or is right for you to learn at this time. You may be in an abusive relationship and someone tells you to get out, to stand up for yourself, you may see a TV programme with a similar scenario, or read something similar in the media. But often, despite these messages, we adopt the “I know best!” approach. and we refuse still to listen or pay attention.
So how else do “they” try to get your attention?
Someone may mention a topic unexpectedly and catch you off guard but it strikes a chord. You may receive insightful emails and friendly inspirations just at the right moment. You may notice repetitions - of incidences, similar events or feelings, colours, numbers, letters, phrases or animals.
The universe is telling you something! So don’t just dismiss it. Pay attention. Ask not just what it could mean but sundry other questions too eg : -
Is there a common theme or implied message to each of these synchronistic events?
Do any symbols and events have a particular meaning for you?
What is your initial gut interpretation saying about the event?
What are your feelings about what you have experienced? Where in the body are they located? Give them a voice, what are they saying?
Is there a string of clues, repetitions piling up?
Is what you are resisting, persisting?
If all this is new to you, remember it may also be radically challenging you. So remain open, inform yourself, take bold action, and be open to health and joy coming in ways and asking of you things, you never imagined.
Still need convincing?
Here’s another example – happened on the 10th March 2016.
In preceding months I had had horrendous problems with NHS Forth Valley, Scotland. Their inefficient and ineffective systems, their appalling communications with patients, their inability to have one department communicate with another, their waiting list systems, its lack of leadership, and much more, conspired against health and were nothing more than the inefficient management of ill-health.
In addition to my various health conditions, I was tired of being dumped from pillar to post, dishonesty, being unheard; it was the proverbial “head against the brick wall syndrome!” and I was aware my health was suffering as a result. My present efforts were bearing no fruit.
So one night as I went to bed, I asked the Universe, God, the Angels, the whole enchilada of my spiritual team, to overnight help release me from the negative thinking I had become stuck in, and to impress upon me a way or ways through, to bring me back to the more spiritual ways of being from which I stray when I get hooked into earthly organisational agendas.
I awoke early, finding it difficult to sleep deeply. And the first thought was to “e-mail all in the NHS that I was distancing myself and having as little to do with them as possible except for surgery and emergencies.” I felt calm.
Until I arose and went about the day. Then my small, egoic mind started sniping away at me. “You don’t really mean it. Are you sure that’s wise? What if xxx?”
And there we have it – the higher Voice is calmness and the egoic, mind churning, brain numbing voice is restless, full of doubt.
Opening to my morning prayers, I asked for confirmation that I was reading the situation right. I dislike asking again and again. Someone once said to me years ago that the spiritual team hear you the first time round and you don’t need to keep repeating the prayer. And in this case, after all, the opening, calm-filled thoughts had been clear. But by now the repeat prayer had gone!
E-mails as messengers
I opened my e-mails and two contained a message which I took as validation that I had to withdraw from my dealings with the NHS and that only I could heal myself. Here are the two e-mails.
The first was from Marianne Williamson and her daily lesson from A Course in Miracles. The day's was: -
Lesson 70 - My salvation comes from me.
That lesson was to remind me that nothing outside myself can save me; nothing outside myself can give me peace. It also mean that nothing outside myself can hurt me, or disturb my peace or upset me in any way. I am in charge of my universe. The lesson also taught that in challenging the NHS I was simply robbing myself of peace and of healing when in fact the Divine direction is always toward healing and being whole and that responsibility for that lies within me.
It continued, “ God does not want us to be sick. Neither do we. He wants us to be healed. So do we.”
I meditated further on the lesson, "My salvation comes from me. It cannot come from anywhere else."
This was not just a coincidence. This was an answer, perfectly timed as to what I needed to do – distance myself from all the external negativity surrounding the NHS, bring back my scattered power and integrate it, and heal from within.
Nothing but my own thoughts could hamper my progress. With one decision I could be free from all external interference. I was in charge of my salvation.
As if to reinforce the message (I think God knows I am slow on the uptake and need things to be in bright neon signs) another e-mail landed, this time the daily meditation from Richard Rohr founder of the Center for Action and Contemplation. His e-mail seemed to address my need to re-centre myself, to get back on the track of the way I prefer to be. We all sin, come off track, do and say things we regret, the solution is how quickly we can come back to centre.
And there in his opening to his daily message was this quote from The School of Paul, Ephesians 4:1-7, NASB –
“Therefore I, the prisoner of the Lord, implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love, being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as also you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all who is over all and through all and in all. But to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ's gift.”
Now whether or not you are religious is not the issue here. The message is clear – come back to first principles, treat self and others with humility, gentleness, and patience, show tolerance. And that, in my recent dealings with the NHS, try as I may, I had not done well enough. The message was clear, to distance myself, to be free, and also free them from any of my negativity.
A small niggle remained; it was that egoic voice of self-doubt. What if I was wrong in how I had viewed the NHS? Was I the only one who had had negative experiences?
I made a coffee and planned to sit in more reflection but I switched on the television just as the morning Scottish news was airing. First piece, the major item of the morning news, was that a report had been issued this very morning by Audit-Scotland on the “Changing Models of Health and Social Care.” It recognised that a lack of leadership and planning was preventing Scotland's health and social care services transforming fast enough, and that current ways of working are unsustainable, something I have been trying to communicate to NHS Forth Valley for almost a year but without success. Now I no longer felt alone.
To some readers, all those three incidents may just be mere coincidence, that they all arrived this morning.
I see them as synchronicity – moments when the Universe conspires to nod in agreement, send you direction
and guidance, just not in the way you would necessarily expect and predict, or like! In my spiritual training
I’ve often read to that if the same or similar message or guidance comes from three different sources,
just as three feathers indicate the presence of angels, then it is time to take note.
So I took note, and sent the following to the NHS:-
I am writing to advise that after another disturbed night I have come to the conclusion that my only way forward now is to distance myself from the NHS as far as possible so I am cancelling any requests for meetings and you will hear no more from me.
I am unhappy with what the constant stress and distress of dealing with the NHS in the past few months is doing to both my mental and physical health. I do not like the constant feelings of fight and flight, of feeling overwhelmed, and over-reacting and thus dealing with staff so negatively and unpleasantly.
I shall turn up for my appointment at “X” hospital tomorrow, and also await details of the orthopaedic procedure.
I shall then rely on the NHS and its duty of care only in the event of any emergency.
I have made this decision as I need to focus my efforts more on creating health instead of managing ill-health and dealing with organisational issues.
I am reassured this morning (11th March 2016) that having read the Audit-Scotland “Changing Models of Health and Social Care” report it, at least, recognises that a lack of leadership and planning is preventing Scotland's health and social care services changing fast enough, and that current ways of working are unsustainable. I no longer feel alone in feeding back what I have done. I just wish I could have remained calmer to do so in a better manner.
Be open to synchronicity
Record what seem to be synchronistic events, the things you call coincidences, the happenchances of life
Notice repeating patterns, themes and messages
Take action – and notice what happens when you notice life's breadcrumbs, when you hear these soul whispers
Take no action - and notice what happens, or doesn't
Take action and notice what happens – does life just keep on with the same old, same old, perhaps getting worse or is it trying to deal you a new deck of cards?
Play with – “I wonder what would happen if I played with these ideas I am getting?” Just wonder. Just play.
Be open and receptive to all good.
Coincidence or synchronicity?
...a matter of timing...
Olu Deniz, Turkey
Henri Juntilla - Wake Up
and follow the breadcrumbs
Have you ever noticed certain patterns in your life that keep happening over and over again?
Maybe it’s a number. Like when you see 11:11 on a clock multiple times in a week, for example. Maybe it’s the repeated mention of a book or a song that keeps playing even if you change radio stations.
Getting to know synchronicity
1. Cease putting everything down to the word “coincidence” - remove it from your vocabulary. If you think of something simply as a coincidence and not divinely tailored for you, you won't even begin to look for its deeper meaning. In time, the messages may stop coming if they keep falling on deaf ears.
2. Put a request out to the universe. Maybe a dream or a goal. Start trusting the universe to help bring your request forward. The floodgates of synchronistic messages will open as if the universe is telling you, “Okay, now that you’ve committed to xxx, we have listened, you need to start paying attention.”
3. Follow your inner nudgings, your signs, your intuition, your inspiration. Follow your curiosity... don’t question it. Take action, one step forward and see what happens next.
Try the above for a few weeks, and pay close attention.