Choose Your Own Adventure

Do you have any idea what you are capable of?  How often do you push the limits of what you believe to be possible?  Where do those limits originate?  Are they self-imposed through your own personal experience?  Have they been learned through other external influences like teachers, media, family, peers or the culture to which you belong?

What if I told you that you are limitless?  What if I told you that anything is possible, would you believe me?  Do I believe me?

On my best days, the world reveals itself as a synchronistic synesthetic symphony.  Subtle threads of interconnected meaning appear to weave a glorious tapestry of destiny right before my ears.  The senses all join together, moment by moment, in a chorus of “AH HA!”  This is my humble attempt to understand the always controversial subject of destiny.  It starts with the assumption that destiny is not some bearded white guy in the sky waiving his ancient, wrinkly hand, whimsically doling out the fate of his creation.  I can’t possibly believe in that type of destiny.  I believe in the experience of presence.  I believe in an eternal NOW.  I believe that the strength of our own determination determines our destiny.  As far as I can tell, destiny is simply what is.  What is happening right now had to happen, otherwise it wouldn’t be happening.  Right?  Does that mean you are being blessed or smote right then and there by the divine representative of your choosing?  Perhaps.  More likely, a ridiculously long line of choices you’ve made throughout your life, consciously or unconsciously, have placed you squarely in the moment you currently reside.  

Why have we insisted on a “free will versus destiny” argument for all these centuries?  I am entirely willing to admit that I may be oversimplifying things just a bit.  I figure if you disagree and care to share your opinion, that’s why God made a comments section.  However, my experience is my experience and the sum of my experiences thus far: all of the interactions with the natural world, every human engagement, every book and article I’ve read, and all the unfathomably weird shit I’ve encountered all lead to this current conclusion…choice and destiny are one and the same, much like cause and effect.  More accurately, cause-effect-cause-effect-cause…on and on from beginningless time through endless eternity.  An unbroken chain of events that had to happen precisely as they happened in order for this moment to exist as it does.  

We are the music makers,

And we are the dreamers of dreams,

Wandering by lone sea-breakers,

And sitting by desolate streams;—

World-losers and world-forsakers,

On whom the pale moon gleams:

Yet we are the movers and shakers

Of the world for ever, it seems.

- Ode by Arthur O'Shaughnessy

It all comes down to choice.  At least that’s what I’m choosing to believe.  Our choices create our reality, but only once our brains have developed the ability to comprehend reason.  As humans, we simply aren’t cognizant of choice before a certain age.  Until we reach that age, we are largely dependent upon the choices of our guardians.  Even when that level of consciousness has been reached, we are still significantly influenced by our guardians’ choices until we move out of their house.  That’s a ton of responsibility to put on a person or guardians who are likely struggling to make healthy choices of their own.  I figure that’s why this responsibility is far too often neglected.  Too many children grow up amidst disturbingly challenging circumstances.  Ideally, though, parents would teach their kids about choice and the power choices carry.  Either that, or we can learn it from a really good therapist later on down the road.

All that being said, I am wholly cognizant of my privilege in this life.  Maslow’s hierarchy of needs were almost systematically provided by my astoundingly capable and compassionate parents.  Physical needs?  Check.  Safety, love and belonging?  Check.  Esteem?  Check.  By the time I left the nurturing sanctuary of their home, I was already fully engaged in the tiny top triangle of Maslow’s pyramid, self-actualization.  Choice is an inevitable aspect of humanity.  Whether we view choice as a burden or a gift is very much conditioned by our upbringing, but not determined by it.  Whether freed of the influence of poor parenting or sent into adulthood with every advantage possible, choice remains.  I feel incredibly fortunate to have learned the gift of choice at such a young age.  This gift has allowed me to make many shockingly advantageous choices and my fair share of piss-poor decisions as well.  Helpful or harmful, all these choices are still gifts.  Life is not "win or lose," it's "win or learn."

Back to my initial inquiry…

What are you capable of?  What choices are you making, right now, to discover the astonishing power that resides within that magical meat machine of yours?  Can you come up with three limiting beliefs that you hold about who you are and what you’re able to accomplish?  How would your life change if you decided, right now, to believe the exact opposite?  What actions would you take?  How much bullshit would you no longer stand for?  What precious gifts would you be able to offer the world?  What happens when you choose to believe that life is happening for you not to you?

I can share my experience after making that very choice…synchronicity abound!  Synchronicity, a term used by Carl Jung to describe unusually meaningful and highly unlikely coincidence, was once a fairly rare occurrence.  Now, it is almost commonplace, a new normal.  All it takes is attention.  Here’s the trick, synchronicity seems to feed on attention and vice versa.  The more attention I pay to life’s events, the more synchronicity occurs.  The more that synchronicity occurs, the closer I pay attention.  What a fantastically beautiful feedback loop!  Give it a shot and let me know if you find yourself in a similarly psychedelic circuit.

To take this one step further, I’ll borrow a term coined by Deepak Chopra: SynchroDestiny.  Dr. Chopra is a master at commodifying spirituality, so if you like you can buy his 9 week online SynchroDestiny course.  I’ll do my best here to save you a few bucks.  Take all this stuff I just said about noticing wild coincidences, or synchronicity, and add in all that other stuff about choice that I started with and you get synchrodestiny.  In other words, attention plus intention allows you to design the life you wish to live.  With this little step, life isn’t just happening for you, it’s happening through you.  Awesome!

We are the music makers and we are the dreamers of dreams…We are the movers and shakers of the world forever, as it seems.  

It’s all up to you.  The choice is yours my friends.