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you are the co-creator of your universe
so start paying attention to what you're manifesting
by maigen thomas (@Maigen)
5.21.12
general

Recently I was in Vancouver and it seems that area of the country hasn't gotten the message that it's Officially Spring. It was quite chilly out, so while I was visiting with one friend before rushing off to meet another friend for coffee and general nonsense around the city, I asked to borrow something to keep me warm.

“Of course!” my friend said, proffering a selection of scarves (all shades of purple, so it was mostly a choice of warmth level). Selecting the brightest purple one, I gathered my last couple of belongings. “That's the one I got outside the ashram in India,” my friend said, knowing I had been there, too. I know the importance of that place. I'm pretty sure I promised not to lose it as I shut the door behind me.

That was the last time I remember seeing the scarf.

The rest of the day was spent with my friend Marnie, having coffee in the sunshine, a late lunch and shopping at Whole Foods, then a visit to Point Roberts to pick up a package (thank goodness Canada lets me across the border again!). We got back to her house around 3pm, just before she had to leave to pick up the girls from school. It was only then I realized I didn't know where the borrowed scarf was.

I called the coffee shop. I called Whole Foods. There was no point in calling Point Roberts. I agonized. I worried. I paced. I reviewed every moment of the day I could remember. Then I called my friend to admit the truth: It was irresponsible and ungrounded of me to have lost the scarf, absolutely. Totally my fault. It's gone.

The conversation wasn't easy. My friend is also my yoga and meditation mentor. The person who calls me on it when I'm not being Present. It sucks more to admit my faults to a teacher. I didn't get yelled at, of course, but that almost makes it worse. I know the memory of getting the scarf is irreplaceable. But the scarf itself, well, it can be replaced, right?

We ended up taking a walk to get coffee, asking once again at the coffee shop to see if anyone had turned in the scarf. No dice, and my latte was cold. Karma? We had just agreed that I was going to have to cross the earth to find an equally awesome replacement scarf from somewhere totally amazing. I was willing to knit one, but that really wouldn't be the same texture, so that idea was nixed. (Which is good, because I'm going on almost two years working on the one I have in my bag right now...)

Just as my mentor FINALLY came to peace with the idea that he'd never see his scarf again, was willing to practice non-attachment and acceptance and not be angry with me, I hear a note of astonishment in his voice: “There's my scarf.”

How about that? I wasn't looking for a scarf on top of a parking meter, I was looking for a scarf on a homeless person. I would have literally walked right past it. Someone had found it and, not knowing where to turn it in, placed it on top of a parking meter.

My eyes lit up, of course, because this is how the Laws of Attraction work, right? Once you put out the idea that you REALLY want something – but you admit that you aren't in charge of the universe – things that are meant to be come to you.

The Laws of Attraction don't say that you're going to get everything you wish for, or that everything that comes to you is going to be good. Life isn't about having everything go your way. What kind of person would you be if it was? Spoiled, that's what you'd be, with no recognition for your own accomplishments, no understanding of the hard work it takes to accomplish your dreams and at what cost those aspirations are fulfilled. The universe works in 'mysterious ways', sometimes, and not always in ways you initially imagined.

Another acquaintance of mine recently reached out for some compassion and sympathy. His dad passed in February, leaving everything to him. There wasn't much in the estate, the bulk of it was a life insurance policy that would have expired in a matter of months. My friend explained to me that he had prayed many times for guidance on how to take care of his parents as they aged. He wondered: had he manifested his father's death?

I was struck, first of all, at the depth of the question from someone who had previously just been a work colleague. I have no experience in grief counseling, but I have noticed that after some of my life experiences, I feel people reach out to me in ways I had not previously experienced.

Then I thought about the question, and about the universal laws and about how things can manifest.

What I said to him was: “Do you think you would have found a way to take care of your parents for an indefinite period of time?” He didn't think that it would have been indefinite, and it wouldn't have been at the level of comfort he would have liked to provide. “Do you think that your father would also have wanted to take care of your mother – the woman he loved and was married to for 54 years – in any capacity he could?” My friend considered this and agreed that his father would, indeed, have placed the needs of his wife above his own.

“Do you think the universe provided a way for your father and you to both take care of your mother, through his death and a nearly expired life insurance policy? It's not the way you ideally would have chosen to take care of your parents, but you prayed for a way to take care of them both. This is how the universe manifested itself. Unless you can presume to be the Creator, this is nothing you can take responsibility for, right? But you did pray for guidance, and this is quite likely the best possible situation that could have happened."

I'm not sharing this example to show I'm a good grief counselor (I'm clearly not), but it caused ME to stop and think of how I would feel in the situation. Although I know I'd react the same way, I hope in a similar future situation I have someone who is able to help me see the good through the difficult times.

It's a beautiful thing to be so grounded you can see the truth of a situation at any time. But it's hard in every moment of life to remain grounded and able to see things like an outsider. In the situation with the scarf, I was too far into the situation to see the greater picture. I would never have looked up and seen the damn scarf in front of my face.

My yoga teacher explained in training that every situation comes with all of the possibilities that could ever occur. You only see what you want to see, though. When you buy a car, you buy the potential for weekend trips and driving on beautiful days. But you also buy the potential for a car collision. No one buys the automobile for the crash, but you have to accept the fact that it becomes a possibility the moment you buy the car.

You do, however, get to make choices in every moment that lead you further down the path you are walking. You are the co-creator of your universe. You get to make the decision to stop on the yellow instead of blowing through the light. You get to choose to be aware of the belongings in your possession and where you set them down.

When we found the scarf I started laughing, almost hysterically, at the turn of events. My lesson in this situation was to remind myself in every moment to be present. To enjoy whatever happens, but to also pay attention. It was not being grounded that caused me to 'flake out' and lose the scarf in the first place.

My mentor's lesson was to let go of the little things. It's just a scarf. What's more memorable: a piece of fabric – however lovely – or the memory of leaving the ashram combined with the experience of buying the scarf from a local villager?


ABOUT MAIGEN THOMAS

Maigen is simple. is smart. is wholesome. is skeevy. is spicy. is delicate. is better. is purer. is 100% more awesome than yesterday. She';s traveling the world and writing about her experiences with life, love, yoga, food, travel and people. Mostly people. Because they';re funny. hear more of her random thoughts @maigen on twitter.

more about maigen thomas

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