We just passed the anniversary of 9/11 earlier this month. Do you remember where you were and who you were with when you heard the news about the Twin towers? I bet you do. Every person I’ve asked this question to recalls with great clarity. This is common with group (or collective) trauma.
How about July 11, 2017? You might; that was just a couple months ago, though more than likely, unless there was something occurring in your life with emotional importance, you’d need to work to remember that date.
In Baz Luhrmann’s song Sunscreen – and if you haven’t heard the song, I encourage you to give it a listen – he says:
Don’t worry about the future. Or worry, but know that worrying is as effective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing bubblegum. The real troubles in your life are apt to be things that never crossed your worried mind. The kind that blindside you at 4 PM on some idle Tuesday. Despite this sage advice, worry is our tendency.
My friend Daniel was in New York that morning. He’s a yogi, and had just come out of a class with a visiting dignitary teacher at Chelsea Piers, where 23rd Street meets the West Side Highway.
“I knew something was off right away. I got to the street corner and a bunch of people were gathered there. They were eagerly talking to each other. Some were pointing up over downtown.”
People don’t tend to stop and talk on the Streets in New York. When he told me the story of his experience there that day, two things stood out.
He recounted: “I joined the group there and a man in a business suit told me that a plane had crashed into one of the towers. I was looking up when the second plane hit. It happened so fast that I couldn’t see the plane. What I did see though, and what changed my life forever, was the explosion on the other side of the building. Flames and smoke poured out.
‘Immediately I went from thinking that we’d experienced a bizarre and tragic accident (a plane crashing into a building) to the realization that this was not an accident. The next moment brought the terrifying question: ‘what else is going to happen now?'
Most of us are unlikely to experience a terrorist attack, or even a life-threatening hurricane, earthquake or fire. And while that’s generally something positive – certainly I don’t wish those kind of experiences upon anyone – my friend Daniel, and some of the people in the midst of the world’s current natural disasters, may have an advantage over us.
I asked him how his life was forever changed.
“I knew – and I mean knew deep in my bones – that there really is no certainty. We think we know what’s going to happen, and the truth is anything can happen in any moment.”
One lesson we might get from this is that given the truth that we never really know the future, we do well to prioritize what’s truly important to us.
Advice about the future, Boston’s best psychic
I’ll let you in on a little psychic industry secret. My work is more about the present than the future. Sure, I do get impressions and visions, and they turn out to be accurate most of the time. More importantly though, I help people understand themselves and what’s happening now – and from that, they are much better at creating their own destinies.
For a few days after 9/11 New York’s atmosphere radically changed from the cold, impersonal city it’s known for to a village where people talked to each other, looked out for each other.
In the midst of disaster, a common question becomes: ‘what matters to me?’
What would you be doing or saying if you weren’t ‘sure’ about the future. Baz goes on to say: Do one thing everyday that scares you every day.
*I put this blog post on hold to address Hurricane Harvey. The message in the post is still as pertinent as it was on September 11th.
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