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How to tune in to the hidden meaning of coincidences, those seemingly random events that can guide us toward our destiny.

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  1. 1. Decoding Life's Secret Messages By Robert Moss, author of The Three 'Only' Things: Tapping the Power of Dreams, Coincidence & Imagination . Visit How to tune in to the hidden meaning of coincidences, those seemingly random events that can guide us toward our destiny.
  2. 2. Decoding Life's Secret Messages <ul><li>Jung called it &quot;synchronicity&quot;--random events that occur together in a way that defies rational explanation. You think of a friend you haven't seen in a while, and she phones you. Or, contemplating a business deal, you see a sign that reads &quot;Beware of thin ice,&quot; and you know to steer clear. If you look more closely at coincidences, you will find guidance in times of confusion or at key moments in decision-making. We are used to looking for symbols in dreams, but coincidences in our waking lives can be also be read as symbols of where the universe is leading us. </li></ul><ul><li>Coincidence is said to be God's way of remaining anonymous, an indication that there is an underlying reality that connects us all. Here's how to recognize those secret messages from the universe. </li></ul>
  3. 3. 1. Read the Signs <ul><li>Signs are literally all around us. A friend of mine was feeling stuck in her life. As she rushed out in the car to pick up her child from school, she realized she was heading into a traffic jam. &quot;Great,&quot; she thought, &quot;the world is mirroring my sense of being stuck.&quot; Just then a little white car zipped past her and drove straight into the converging lines of traffic, cutting them off and opening a space for her to get clear. As she seized the chance to get out of the jam, she glanced back and noticed that the vanity plate of the white car read: &quot;CREATE.&quot; She was grateful for the double message: that when things stall, we are required to create a new approach, and that we don't have to figure everything out on our own. The universe can be friendly, if we'll let it. Other signs that are &quot;in your face&quot; might include a billboard, a quote on a church signboard, or the first song or commercial that is on the radio when you turn it on. </li></ul>
  4. 4. 2. Ask for Guidance <ul><li>You can ask synchronicity to be your guide. Start by identifying the theme in your life on which you would most like some help right now. Write down a clear and simple request by filling in the blank in the following statement: &quot;I would like guidance on....&quot; Now get ready to receive the first striking or unusual thing that enters your field of perception as a direct response from the universe to your question. A friend who was having doubts about her boyfriend wrote down her question, &quot;Should I end my relationship with Doug?&quot; She turned on the TV and immediately found herself watching a character named Doug breaking up with a girl on the phone--in an episode of &quot;King of Queens,&quot; a show she had never watched before. She felt that answered her question directly! </li></ul>
  5. 5. 3. Get Moving <ul><li>Coincidences multiply when we are in motion--because we are traveling outside the grooves of regular habit and ordinary time, into a deeper reality. Airports, train stations, and the morning commute are good places to be alert to messages. You can also consult the &quot;marketplace&quot; oracle. The oracle of Hermes was popular in ancient Greece. Here's how it worked: You entered a walled marketplace and whispered your question into the ear of the statue of Hermes, the messenger of the gods. Then you pressed your hands over your ears until you got back to the market gate. The first words or sounds you heard after you took your hands away from your ears were the response to your question. Try this in a market or mall. Ask a question in your mind, take ten minutes to roam around, then stop and read the first sign you see. That's your answer. </li></ul>
  6. 6. 4. Meet the Library Angel <ul><li>Open a book at random and see what is staring at you from the page. It may be a theme for the day. Many people do this with the Bible or another sacred book. Or go to a favorite bookstore--used bookstores are especially magical--and see what pops up right away. You may come to notice, even among familiar books at home, that the benign &quot;shelf elf,&quot; which Arthur Koestler called the Library Angel, will come and play with you--knocking a book off a shelf or revealing others in unexpected ways--if you are engaged in a quest. </li></ul>
  7. 7. 5. Notice That Life Rhymes <ul><li>Mark Twain said that history may not repeat itself, but it rhymes. This is also true of our personal history. When a name or a theme comes up again and again, it may be telling us that we need to get the message. On my way to a TV show in Seattle to talk about dreams, I had to wait at a busy intersection. Suddenly the driver of an amazing vehicle painted blue, with a giant shark's fin on top, stopped to let me cross. I remarked to my friends, &quot;The shark will be a theme today.&quot; On the air, the interviewer told me of a dream in which she was flying low over blue waters, watching the dorsal fins of sharks circling below. I commented that, if it were my dream, in addition to watching out for &quot;sharks&quot; at work, I might wonder if anyone I knew was challenged by cancer. Sharks don't get cancer, I said, and have sometimes proved to be helpers for cancer patients in guided imagery sessions in which they picture a shark eating the cells of their disease. Off the air, the TV anchor revealed that her mother, who was vacationing in the Caribbean, had been diagnosed with cancer. I suggested that her mother visualize the shark as an inner healer. </li></ul>
  8. 8. 6. See an Opportunity Beyond Every Setback <ul><li>My rule of thumb is: When you find a door closing in your face, look for the one that may be opening. Here's another example involving Mark Twain. In Hannibal, Mo., young Sam Clemens read in the paper about a &quot;wonder&quot; plant in Brazil that was supposed to have healing properties. Local businessmen agreed to back Clemens on an expedition to acquire a large supply of the plant. But when he got to New Orleans, he discovered he couldn't get to Brazil from there. Repairing to a local tavern to drown his sorrows, he met a Mississippi riverboat captain who agreed to take him on as an apprentice pilot. From his experiences on the river, Clemens got the material for his best stories, as well as his pen name. And so, every time I miss an airplane connection or a plan falls through, I am open to finding an opportunity that would not otherwise have appeared. </li></ul>
  9. 9. 7. Don't Be Afraid to Get Lost <ul><li>This is the cardinal navigational law of serendipity. You can only get to the magic kingdom by getting lost. You get there when you think you are going somewhere else and &quot;fall off the map.&quot; Serendipity is a major factor in scientific discovery and invention, as well as in exploration and entrepreneurship. Alexander Fleming discovered penicillin by accident. He neglected to isolate bacterial cultures from stray spores blowing around his hospital building before going away on vacation. When he returned, he found that a mold had killed the bacteria in his experiment--and his trained mind recognized that he was looking at an extraordinary cure. The glue used in Post-it notes was another accident; a scientist trying to produce a strong adhesive came up with a very weak one instead--and recognized an unexpected opportunity. </li></ul>
  10. 10. 8. Notice Slips of the Tongue <ul><li>It's amazing what can be revealed through a slip of the tongue. Pay attention to what's going on when you or someone else misspeaks a name or a phrase. This could be a Freudian slip, or a slip of a more interesting kind. I'm pretty good with names, so when I get someone's name wrong, I always pause to ask whether the &quot;wrong&quot; name means something we need to know about. After I called Mark &quot;Charlie&quot; for the third time in one of my seminars on coincidence, I asked, &quot;Okay, who's Charlie?&quot; Charlie had been Mark's best friend, and Mark was still grieving his death. In fact, Mark was wearing Charlie's favorite sweater that day. This guided Mark to construct a simple personal ritual to honor his departed friend and to separate their energies. </li></ul>
  11. 11. 9. Identify Your Personal Omens <ul><li>We don't want to carry around old superstitions. But we can often find guidance by identifying our personal omens. For me, seeing a friendly black dog, especially in an unlikely place, is always a sign that something good is about to happen. I have also received life-guiding messages from red-tailed hawks. Many years ago, wondering whether to leave the city for a rural home, I sat under an old white oak and pondered my decision. I felt that if moving was the right choice, there would be a sign. A red-tailed hawk came circling overhead, dipping lower and lower--and dropped a wing feather between my knees. I accepted the sign, purchased the farm, and found my life entering a new spiritual depth. </li></ul>
  12. 12. 10. Be a Synchronicity Magnet <ul><li>Coincidences tend to cluster around us when we pursue our deepest creative desires. The stronger our emotions, the stronger the effect on our psychic and physical environment, and the more our direction is guided by meaningful coincidence. The poet William Butler Yeats believed that when our minds are working on a challenging line of inquiry, we attract the interest and guidance of deeper intelligences. Thinking about this one day, I took my dog for a walk in the park--and ran into a cheerful Irish setter called Fergus. His owner explained the name by citing a poem by Yeats. Accepting the coincidence as a sign, I proceeded to make Yeats a major character in the book I was working on. The world responds to the thoughts and feelings to which we give the energy of our attention. There is no impermeable boundary between mind and matter anywhere in our universe. Through the power of our minds, we can open bridges between the everyday world and a deeper order of reality in which we may find the hidden logic of events--and our own larger stories. </li></ul>