The primary way we seek guidance in life decisions in tai chi and taoism is through the I Ching and the Sage, which I’ve blogged about in previous posts. The I Ching makes use of the laws of synchronicity in helping us approach life’s struggles with foundational ways of correct action.
Another way of seeking guidance is by trusting in the Universe and realizing that all the answers we seek are in the palm of our hand, are in our circle, are available to us for the asking. In decision making, even a taoist will use logic and reason and weigh and reflect on the positives and negatives of an action. A wise and educated person can make wise and educated decisions about most of life’s issues and questions. But wisdom takes us further in knowing that we can access a deeper consciousness and all we have to do is learn to recognize and translate into our physical, conscious language, the answers we are getting when we ask.
The process certainly involves trust, both in the figure of the Sage or of the Holy Spirit working behind the scenes and an acceptance that we may not understand why or recognize the truth of the way things are unfolding. We must also develop a sense of trust and faith in that if we just ask a question, the universe is prepared to answer it, in fact it has already be answered, and it’s just waiting for us to see it.
When it comes to this kind of metaphysical guidance, we certainly are a little poor sighted and need to develop our eyes and our ears. So many people go through life oblivious to the signs that are staring them in the face. Even diligent practitioners can miss the obvious.
One exercise I like to do in reflection is to write down all the major synchronous events that have occurred in my life, at least the ones that I’m aware of. It really is amazing how things fall into place, the people, the places, the jobs. Even the jobs I didn’t get, there seems to have been a behind the scenes workings to keep me from going down the wrong path.
So, really, all you have to do is ask. Frame the question. Wait for the answer. It’s sort of that simple. Of course, practicing tai chi or yoga trains the body and the mind to be aware and receptive. Practiced meditation also helps. But you must understand that the things you need and want, the people who are supposed to be in your life at any particular time, and the people who, thankfully, are not in your life at any particular given time, is all synchronistically happening all around you and you need to learn to see it. One way of being able to see is to ask and then let it go. It will come.
Visualization is another way of tapping into the source to gain guidance and perspective. A self guided meditation in which you travel to meet your inner teacher, inner mentor, or spirit guide, is an amazing way to tap in.
The answers we get may be unexpected and may come at the most unexpected time. That’s the way this works. Also, it is important to note that we are co creators and co responsible for things, so if an answer comes to a problem, it may be that it leads us into the direction of having to do more work and more preparation in order to make use of the answer we get. For example, when I was out of work 4 years ago, I did the physical, freshened up the resume, searched the internet, sent out applications. The job I got was synchronistically brought to me by a friend and was solidified when I knew the person interviewing me. But I still had to do the work to be prepared to make use of the synchronous event in my life.
An example of not being ready is my famous Cheryl Crow story. When I was deciding back in 1998 to be a Blues Rock musician, I went to see several open jams at a place called Manny’s Car Wash in New York. It felt very safe since there weren’t too many people in the place if I made a fool of myself my first time out. But the night I decided to bring in my guitar, the place was jammed. I chickened out. I wasn’t ready. And the reason it was jammed was because Cheryl Crow was performing some songs from her new album and the guy running the jam was on the album. So I missed my opportunity to play with Cheryl Crow.
There is a a lot of static in the material world, in the secular world, and secular goals that work at cross purposes of our spiritual progress and living the correct life. We need to train through tai chi and meditation and chi kung and reflection with the I Ching, and doing visualizations with out inner guides to weed out the static and be able to hear in high definition what the universe is telling us.
I’ve actually posed some things to the universe today. I asked for a mentor. I asked for a benefactor. I am open to receiving both in my life right now. I am going to say that the way of things is accidental, but I say it in a way to mean that there are no accidents. Life is coincidence in its root meaning, life is synchronous. It’s happening. The answers are in the palm of our hand. The people are right in front of us.