Okay, once again I’m changing things up here. Today’s original entry is migrating to next Tuesday. In it’s place is this one.
A friend of mine who is aware of my new paradigm sent me a link to a story called:
The Secret to finding unexpected miracles
You MUST read this article. Then follow the exercise below. I bet you’ll discover there are many more miracles that have taken place in your life then you were previously aware of.
First a definition that appears in the body of this entry:
That day I learned about “bracketing,” a handy little tool that allows anthropologists to contemplate another culture’s stories without accepting them naively (thus becoming vulnerable to any guru who tells them to put cabbage in their underwear and bathe with plugged-in toasters) or utterly discounting them (thus embracing the arrogant assumption that we currently understand everything in the universe).
To begin the bracketing process, start with these instructions:
1. List five important people in your life, not including members of your family of origin. Did anything improbable happen to bring you together with these people? Write down any coincidences or synchronicities you can remember.
2. Recall five experiences that dramatically changed your life: a chance meeting, accident, adventure, medical crisis. Did any unusual events enable you to have — and survive — these experiences?
3. Think of five important events in your career and/or your role as a parent. Looking back, did help ever arrive improbably just when you needed it?
4. Remember any weird-but-true experience in your life. Did you have a dream one night that later came true? Did a stranger, song, or book ever get your attention and answer an important question? Did you once use new computer software without making 500 calls to tech support? Make a list.
Okay, you’ve bracketed everything you’ve written down, choosing to believe that there might be something beyond mere coincidence. But the emphasis is on the word might. Now, stepping into your social scientist mode, review the lists, asking yourself, “What are the odds that this improbable event or that particular meeting is the result of something bigger than me?”
If you need help taming your inner skeptic, think of psychologist Abraham Maslow: He warned against coming under the sway of “the antirational, the antiempirical, the antiscientific,” but he also wrote, “To be looking elsewhere for miracles is to me a sure sign of ignorance that everything is miraculous.”
A rigorously trained social scientist, he found that seeing everything as miraculous was only logical.
Whether you’ve seen angels floating around your bedroom or just found a ray of hope at a lonely moment, choosing to believe that something unseen is caring for you can be a life-shifting exercise. Even if you’re the kind of person who makes Doubting Thomas look like a lightweight, decide, just until you finish this magazine, to set aside your disbelief.
When I consider all the strange occurrences framed by the brackets in my mind, I have to agree. Bracketing has turned all my experiences, remembered and present, into a gallery of miracles where I wander around dazzled by the beauty of events I cannot explain.
You might want to create such a gallery yourself. You need only your bracketing mind, your sense of what’s probable — and a world filled with moments of grace, strange synchronicities, and perhaps (who knows?) the occasional bedroom full of guardian angels.
Did you find synchronicity in any of the above lessons? If you did, I’d LOVE to hear from you. If you feel comfortable sharing these, feel free to post a comment.