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The Magnificent ExperimentThe Magic of Connecting with Your Tao
By Christian M. Wiese
Balboa PressCopyright © 2013 Christian M. Wiese
All right reserved.
Chapter OneThe Beginning of the End of an Ancient Journey
Whenever righteousness falters and chaos threatens to prevail, I take on a human body and manifest myself on earth. Lord Krishna, Bhagavad Gita
He was sitting in a conference room with a group of experts at the onset of the Global Financial Crisis. He was a macro strategist whose job it was to predict the coming melt-down of financial markets and economies that was just about to hit. His colleague from the troubled US mortgage area started the discussion and it soon became clear to everyone in the room that the first dominos of a vicious big chain were starting to tip over. Yet, somewhere in this group dialogue something strange happened to him; a wonderful energy rose up his spine and peace penetrated him in a way that he had never experienced before.
Many books on spirituality describe the state that you are likely to experience when you are 'there'. Few describe the process of waking up to a new reality as a transition to a new world. A spiritual awakening is a process and not an event. I was that financial strategist who experienced the onset of the Global Financial Crisis as a symbol of my spiritual renaissance. I am an expert in the analysis of transitions changes experienced by societies, economies and financial systems. Perhaps that is the reason why I have been chosen to share with you the most magnificent transition of them all, the journey home to our Source. A spiritual transformation can happen in unexpected stages of our lives and in surprising situations, just as I discovered it. Given that this book has found you, a similar transformation is probably in store for you. This is how the Tao typically works. As they say, when the student is ready, the teacher shows up.
A spiritual journey seems mystical and magic when you first encounter it, yet at the same time it is carefully planned to the minute detail well ahead over decades. The Tao is a spiritual path that will stay magic for those who believe that it is, or a process that is explained to you in a language that every child could understand for those who seek rational answers. The Tao responds to you in whatever way it is most meaningful to you. I started my journey as a scientist. I have a Ph.D. in economics and have been a rational minded person all my life, but along my path new personality dimensions opened up. Today I would call myself as much an artist and connector as a scientist. I figure that is what traveling the Tao is all about it is a journey towards wholeness.
You will hear the word experiment a lot in this book, just because I have lived my life for a number of years now as a big experiment and turned pretty much everything I learned upside down not because it is fun, there actually have been a few scary moments along the way but because I somehow had to. Once the Tao gets a hold of you, you no longer really have a choice. The analogy that comes to mind is that of a car wash. You spend your time searching for the 'beyond' very much as a driver looks out for the ramp at the car wash. But then you connect and after a little fine-tuning you suddenly realize that a different Force has taken over. At that time the best you can do is to let go of the steering wheel as you are no longer in control. Staying with the car wash analogy, a spiritual path is really a clean up process. All the aspects of the 'I' that are artificial are simply washed away until all that is left is the Core that has been around for thousands of years. This book shares my observations about this magnificent synchronization process with a Force beyond our comprehension. There is no leap of faith required, you can experiment with this Force along the way and you will be in for a ride that is very real and simply magnificent. Enjoy your journey!
Chapter TwoThe Spiritual Experiment
How can one have faith in God in today's modern world? A lot of people struggle with the concept of faith, you probably do as well. I hope that my book can help you put this faith question to rest once and for all. I observed that there is a Force out there that can be observed and studied. Sure, it is subtle, yet it is very visible. This Force encourages you to reposition your life all the time. It will unfortunately take a while to practice this communication with the 'beyond', but the few mistakes as much as the many successes are fun to experience. Faith is not really an issue just because you experience these lessons. If you can perceive the effects of this metaphysical Force, why on earth would you not trust it?
Heinrich Schliemann was a wealthy German businessman and decided after reading Homer's Iliad that the city Troy was real and he followed the geographic descriptions to track it down in today's Turkey. That's what entrepreneurial and scientific minds do; they follow a hunch, work under the assumption that their conjecture is right and discover their nugget of wisdom. Searching for the 'reality' behind the observed reality is like that. Of course, you could be on a wild goose chase, but then, Homer's Iliad could have been entirely fictional and Troy may have never existed. You have to follow your intuition my friend. Only you can be the judge of what is fact and fiction. But understand that your insights have to be a subjective experience. You don't have the ability to show old vases and ruins the way Heinrich Schliemann did, but you have peace, mojo and happiness that are visible to others. Well, as far as I am concerned, I would choose peace, mojo and happiness over old vases any day, wouldn't you?
I am no particular authority, just someone who a few years ago started seeing some strange patterns that just couldn't have been random. They instead felt like a message from the 'beyond'. As I started reading what some other spiritual path travelers have experienced, I understood that this Force has always been around and that It wants to be discovered. Few people see this Force because they are too busy looking in the opposite direction. Lao-Tzu discovered this Force in China 2500 years ago, so I use the name he coined: the Tao, meaning the Way. I do not want to convince you that the Tao exist, and I certainly cannot prove that the Way exists, but I want to give you a few pointers and invite you to look out for the Tao yourself. You can study this Force like every scientist would; you can do it at work, at home, anywhere really. It is a lot of fun and the first few steps will jumpstart you on a lifelong journey. May the Force the Tao be with you!
Chapter ThreeThe Secret of the Universe Revealed
I talk to everyone. All the time. The question is not to whom I talk, but who listens. God in Neale Walsch's Conversations with God
You have probably heard of Rhonda Byrne's book, The Secret, the promise that the universe is your oyster as long as you have the faith that it is. Our book uses the same foundation, the Law of Attraction, but starts with a different premise. A spiritual path is about self discovery, the process of letting go of everything that is not the real you. So what I have discovered is that if you want to understand who you really are, the Tao will always be there to assist you in your discovery process. The secret I want to pass on is:
Ask, and it shall be given to you Seek, and ye shall find Knock, and it shall be opened to you
Well, in all honesty, I can't even claim that it is a secret, Matthew's (7:7) has been known to Western civilization over the last 2000 years, but I would think that it is a surprise to you to hear that we can actually take these words literally.
To see whether my claim is right, let us run our first little experiment. Reflect for a moment and see whether there is anything about yourself that you want to understand better, perhaps a quirk, a particular fear, a recurring theme in your life, an illness or a strong passion. If there is something you would like to know about yourself, please write the question on a piece of paper and lock it up for a few days. The Tao should deliver an answer pretty promptly, but the requirement is that you need to have your ears and eyes wide open. The answer can be in a song, in a book, in a movie, in a painting and then of course can be provided by the network of people you are connected with, your friends as much as your perceived foes. Try it, it works. When it comes to spiritual growth, the universe is your oyster after all. Why don't you put this book down for a while and first see what kind of answer you get.
So, did it work out? You now experienced for yourself what the Tao is all about. Your subconscious just knows when you are ready for your next step and then delivers the trigger to bring the insight into your consciousness. Fascinating, eh? You might still think that all of this is nothing but a coincidence, that perhaps you were just finding meaning in randomness. Sure, that is what our modern world, our scientists and psychologists would say. But please remember that in this magnificent experiment we want to table this voice of old-fashioned reasoning for a while and just give this new perspective a try. Your conviction will grow as these metaphysical experiences intensify. As a matter of fact, if the Tao hypothesis is true, you should at one point experience connectedness wherever and whenever you want.
Chapter FourOn Synchronicity
Everyone is God speaking. Why not be polite and listen to Him? Hafiz, Persian Poet
If you google the expression synchronicity you will find a wealth of references on this subject. Somehow most spiritual path travelers have seen the magic of synchronicity in action. The psychologist C. G. Jung coined the phrase when he worked with a patient for whom the scarab beetle had an important psychological meaning and then, during a session, a scarab beetle, seemingly out of nowhere, showed up at the window. Both were floored when this happened and C. G. Jung reported that his patient opened up to him after this experience and recovered quickly.
Synchronicity is the voice from the 'beyond' which actually works for the scientific mind quite well. For anyone who has an interest in statistics, you can start calculating the odds of living in a random universe when those odd synchronicities present themselves. I live my life by these occurrences, but other than my wife and few close friends I have never really mentioned them to anyone. I certainly don't want to impress or bias you; you will find your idiosyncratic mode of communication with the Tao. When you are connected, you know it without the shadow of a doubt. The intensity of these occurrences is similar to a dream, they are highly intensive when you experience them, but they feel a little stale when you communicate them to others. Synchronicity is the magic of being connected to the Tao communicated back to you in a language that is meaningful to you.
I remember my first experienced synchronicity quite well. I thought it was just a funny coincidence. I was on a business trip to France and was on my way to the airport. When I got into the cab, I tried my somewhat broken French on the driver. I told him that I needed to go to Terminal E. "Terminal A?" he asked, knowing that the French e can easily be confused with the American a. "Terminal E", I said to him confidently and he took off. Well, you can imagine what happened. There had been a change in my itinerary and after 30 minutes of confused searching I figured out that I should have gone to Terminal A instead.
Of course I cannot impress you with this little story, but then, I don't try to impress you. You will be impressed when stuff like that happens to you over and over again until you are certain beyond any shadow of a doubt that this connection with the Source is real. You can learn for yourself that you can live your life like a treasure hunt where every voice and every occurrence has meaning and should be, well, treasured. Dr. Wayne W. Dyer in his book, Change your Life Change your Thoughts: Living the Wisdom of the Tao, introduced me to the quote of the Persian Poet Hafiz who said some 700 years ago that if everyone is God speaking, why not be polite and listen to Him? That's it! That is the Tao in action. Along the Tao you can learn to appreciate that everyone and everything has a meaning in your life, friend as much as foe, pleasure as much as pain. If this sounds incredible to you, just wait for the next synchronicity to show up in your life to show you the Way.
Chapter FiveWalking the Tao for the First Time
The other day I said to my colleague that she should never do anything under time pressure. Time is here to serve us is my philosophy. If there is no time for a project then that either means that we should approach the project differently or perhaps even not at all. Life has a rhythm to it. You can always tune into it. Sure, sometimes it goes fast as well, but then it will be part of you and you will not feel any pressure. Be one with the Tao, life's invitation to dance with you, and you will always be at peace.
I remember the time when the Tao gave me the first eye opener. I was again on a business trip to Paris and one day before the trip my wrist-watch broke. When I put on the replacement watch, it broke as well. I didn't have a mobile phone then, so suddenly I had no idea what time it was, which was really a big problem for me, given that I always used to worry about making appointments on time. But there was just nothing I could do about it. On that trip a magical world opened up to me. Wherever I needed to know what time it was, a clock would show up out of the blue. Sometimes I could see the watch of my conversation partner, sometimes there was a clock on the street, a parking meter, a bill with the time on it, and so many other sources would suddenly show up. I would even run little experiments and without fail the Tao would deliver. It was as if the universe opened up to me and said "Hey, we are here to serve, so please don't worry about anything".
The Law of Attraction works. If you are totally at peace, your environment will smile and move with you. Being a Tao traveler is a philosophy, an attitude really. In my experience you can learn walking the Tao and you will always get a gentle push from the Source in the right direction. The Tao is always there to serve you as long as you are ready.
It turns out that the time theme was quite meaningful to me personally. This was around the time when I had launched my spiritual blog, ZeitgeistinMA (zeitgeistinma.blogspot.com). The literal translation of the German word Zeitgeist is time spirit, implying the spirit of our time, so how cool is it that my lesson plan gets launched with the time theme as a first discussion point! My experience along the Tao has taught me that time is indeed here to serve you. If you slow down internally, your environment slows with you. Deadlines exist to enable you to sharpen your focus on whatever it is you really need to achieve. Everything you need to have will be given to you just in time as long as you have the faith that it is. Just run this little time experiment and see whether it works for you.
Chapter SixDon't Worry, Be Happy
Along the Tao, everything is just perfect as is. The things that annoy you have the same importance in the end as all the pleasant surprises. Everything is intertwined in this magnificent puzzle. Let me give you an illustration of the 'Don't Worry, Be Happy' attitude. I was in Brussels on a business trip. I had asked a taxi to drive me to a particular building, but he stopped short of it and asked me to walk a little because traffic would be slow with all the one-way streets. "Pas de problem" I mumbled and actually felt it wasn't a problem at all. But when I walked I realized that it was quite a distance and that perhaps I should have insisted on being driven to my destination instead. In any case, because of this little field trip I got a better understanding of the city and managed to walk home all the way to my hotel in the evening. Actually, I even thanked the cab driver mentally for my sudden pedestrian freedom.
On my departure day there was a big protest in the city and my taxi had to stop short of my destination and I had to walk to get my luggage at the hotel as I was on my way to the airport. I suddenly realized that had it not for the gentle push on day one to discover the city on foot, I would have been completely lost. I wouldn't have found my hotel, and even if I had, no taxi could have departed from there. My conclusion, whatever happens to you, don't worry, be happy, the resistance probably happens for a reason. Even if things seem inconvenient at the moment, you never know what they are good for in the end.
Perhaps you have noticed that my first three encounters with the Tao all happened abroad. When I discovered this odd fact I realized that only when you are thrown a little out of your comfort zone my French isn't good at all do you have a chance to open up to your environment. Change is good, react to the clues that come your way along the Tao and you have nothing to worry about.
I would emphasize here that some discomfort can be part of the journey as well; I hardly promise you eternal sunshine. We all know that every yin comes with a yang attached. What the 'Don't Worry, Be Happy' philosophy claims is that we seem to be wandering along a path of healing and that every challenge we encounter is yet another invite of the Tao to overcome our fears, deepen our relationships with others and become whole in the process. If you always put your best foot forward, a little act of kindness will surely come your way. Just make the path of healing your working hypothesis and see what happens. Viewed from this perspective, why should we frown and worry?
Excerpted from The Magnificent Experiment by Christian M. Wiese Copyright © 2013 by Christian M. Wiese. Excerpted by permission of Balboa Press. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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