One of the questions that Dr. Bernard Beitman’s study on coincidences asks is if we can create synchronicities. It’s an intriguing question, and while I was mulling this over, I happened to check out the ibooks library for new books and ran across The Now Effect, by Elisha Goldstein.
This book fascinates me. The material is undoubtedly familiar to most people who experience synchronicity frequently and yet, Goldstein never mentions the word, never talks about synchronicity per se. Instead, he talks about mindfulness, about being totally present in the moment – echoes of Eckhard Tolle’s Power of Now and and the Abraham/Hicks material.
Goldstein talks about the importance of “dropping into the moment” through breath work, yoga, and just being present. I’ve always had a problem with this concept. When I’m doing yoga, my mind is off into some other zone that has nothing to do with my body and everything to do with whatever I happen to be writing at the time. I’m gnawing away at how I can improve what I’ve written, increase the tension, hone the characters. During meditation, I have a specific set of questions begging for answers. My bottom line seems to be: show me, guide me, and please don’t pull any shifty trickster tricks in the process.
But in reading The Now Effect, I have come to realize that mindfulness is more than the sum of its parts. It’s a state of being. It’s a matter of training your brain to bring itself fully into the moment. When I eat breakfast, for instance, I am scrolling through messages on my BlackBerry, taking note of what I need to answer before I head to the gym. I am living a few moments ahead of myself when it would behoove me to actually pay attention to the sweet succulence of my grapefruit, to the beauty of its color, its texture, to how each bite tastes as it slides down my throat.
So this morning, I paid attention to my grapefruit. I spoke to it – Hey, how’s it going? As I dug out each little wedge, I thought of my friend Nancy Pickard who, after a visit, sent me a set of grapefruit spoons so that I wouldn’t have to struggle to extract those little delicious wedges. I tried to be present for my grapefruit.
Yes, I know how silly that sounds. I know how ridiculous it sounds when you’re telling yourself a story that just isn’t true in this moment – my bills are paid, I am rich, healthy, in love, my kids are doing great, I have EVERYHING I need.
But there’s a certain raw beauty in recognizing that disparity and not being limited by it as you reach out for more. In the end, we are limitless beings whose experiences reflect and encapsulate who we are right now, in this instant. And perhaps synchros are the Aha! experiences that tells us how we’re doing in any given moment. Course correction needed. Pay attention. You’re on the right track. Keep doing what you’re doing…
I still don’t know if we can create synchros. But we can certainly invite more of them into our lives by remaining aware of what we think and do and feel moment to moment. Maybe dogs know and practice this far better than we humans.