What it takes to get to where we are

I’ve just had friends in town who live outside Canada. To be accurate, they are both friends now, but I met one of them for the first time on this visit. Once again, it brought to mind for me just how many synchonicities it takes for us to end up right where we are, at the precise moment that is required so that we can have a particular experience, or in this case, meet a certain person.

I have had two of these experiences in the last six months. One of these was an introduction by a friend of mine who met someone at a dinner party and, as he said to me, “She does what you do”. He went on to invite me, this new friend and her husband, to coffee so that we could meet. It was one of those times where I looked at her and thought, “Oh yes, I know you!” Since then, we have got together many times, reinforcing that first impression.

The other experience was just this past week. An old friend introduced me to his new girlfriend, although that is such an inadequate term! We had an instant rapport and both commented on it.

I’m not sure where either of these new friendships will lead, and perhaps I don’t need to. It has served to remind me of all the other times in my life when I’ve had these moments of instantly knowing that I was meeting a person who would be significant in my life. One in particular comes to mind as an example because it required a very long trail of connections.

In 1995, my then partner and I went to Jerusalem to do some research for a book he was writing with a colleague of his. We were there just shy of a week, conducting a number of interviews. During that time, we were invited one evening to attend an informal talk being given by a fellow who had been to visit us in our home in Scotland. He said it would be in English and at the house of a North American couple whom we might enjoy meeting.

That night, when I met the couple who were the hosts for the talk, I made a friendship that has lasted more than fourteen years. In fact, I think that, unbeknownst to me at the time, meeting them was a large part of the reason I went on that trip, especially in light of the fact that the book that we were researching was never published.

The back-story to this meeting is worth recounting. Firstly, in order to be there on that trip, I had to have met my American then-partner in Oregon in 1993 while we were both attending a workshop. I had to travel to visit him in Scotland as a side-trip, when I was on my way to another workshop in Poland a few months later. We began a relationship that eventually took us to Jerusalem just over a year after that.

The second piece that had to have been in place was that we were in Jerusalem because my then-partner had a friend living there, whom he had met in Scotland years before and with whom he had stayed in touch by mail. This fellow was the contact who had sent that night’s speaker to stay with us in Scotland, motivating him to invite us to his talk.

The third piece was that the couple hosting the talk were only in Jerusalem for just over a year while she studied to convert to Judaism. She was from California and he was born, raised and lived most of his life in Vancouver. She was psychic like me. Less than six months later, they would no longer be there.

When we left to return to Scotland, she asked me if I would write to her by email. Email was new and virtually unheard of in 1995. I only knew about it because of the fourth piece in this intricate tale; I had been helping someone in Scotland to set up a web presence and email for the Findhorn Foundation. She and I stayed in touch by email until later that year when I returned to Vancouver to ship my belongings to Scotland. Here is the fifth piece of the tale; his father had fallen ill, necessitating their return. We stayed with them while I completed my shipping arrangements and I got to know them better. Just over a year later, I was back in Vancouver to live and we took up the friendship in person.

Yes, I know many of you will say all of this was just coincidence but you all know I don’t believe in coincidence. I prefer to see the Universe as a huge, carefully orchestrated dance, where every little piece has its role and correct timing. Getting me to Israel, where I had no personal business, involved a long line of connections that I couldn’t have foreseen.

I’ve recounted, in a fairly long-winded way, how I made new friends in Israel, when at the time I lived in Scotland, and would later return to Vancouver. But this is just one of many such stories. When I’m having days, or even weeks or months, when things don’t seem to be falling into place, or when I wonder if I am looking at the picture of life and not seeing what is right under my nose, I have to remind myself that some choice points, the ones with the sort of preceding chain of events that I have just recounted to you here, are crystal clear.

Every one of those choices felt right and I didn’t agonize over them for a second. The meeting in Oregon, the decision to travel and make a side-trip to Scotland, the choice to try and make a life with a new partner, the choice to help him with his book and travel all the way to Israel to do it, the choice to go to the talk that night, the emails that followed and allowed me to know that these new friends were in Vancouver when I was there, and the subsequent choice to return to Vancouver again … whew! That’s how it feels when things are right. “Oh yeah”, I say to myself, “That’s what it feels like when it’s right! There’s no missing it!”

What an intricate web we weave! I can relax a little, knowing that, when it comes to the big stuff in life, the key connections, there is more at work than is dreamt of in our philosophy. Ain’t it grand?

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