By Lissa Rankin
Guest writer for Wake Up World
I used to make decisions in a very cognitive way, the way most of us are taught to make good decisions in our culture. Responsible decision-making for most of us goes something like this:
1: Consider options. 2: Research. 3: Analyze pros and cons. 4: Anticipate and calculate the potential for regret or loss, making sure to minimize the risk of regret, loss or failure. 5: Weigh risks, anticipating worst case scenarios. 6: Seek prudent advice from trustworthy experts if the answer is not clear. 7: Make your decision, quelling any lingering doubt that may make you second guess yourself. 8: Take action.
That all began to change about ten years ago, when I was a full-time doctor, pregnant with my child, suicidal with grief and despair, feeling helpless and out of options, and a little voice inside of me whispered, “Sweetheart, you’re gonna have to quit your job.”
Never had I considered that I would make a life-changing, terrifying, “irresponsible” decision based on something so “woo woo.” A year later, my heart raced as I sold my house, liquidated my retirement account, and paid $120,000 for the privilege of leaving my job as a conventional OB/GYN when my then husband was not bringing in an income, and I had a newborn baby.
It turned out to be the best decision of my life.
Fast forward ten years, and I now make decisions in a manner that would have seemed downright nuts to my very analytical doctor self back then. I’m about to teach a two-day live program with Sounds True in Boulder with my spiritual mentor Trevor Hart about Igniting Your Inner Pilot Light. (Learn more and register here.) During the program, we’ll be going in depth into what it means to open to, discern, trust, and follow through on spiritual guidance in all its forms. In case you can’t make it to the live event, let me share with you some of what we’ve been discussing in preparation for this event.
The “Organizing Intelligence”
Imagine for a moment that there is an invisible force of love that is always trying to help us make decisions. This force is not particularly interested in helping you get what your ego wants. It’s much more interested in helping you align with Divine Will, which is always a bit of a mystery to the ego. This force of love—call it God, Goddess, Buddha, Jesus, Allah, The Universe, Source—will use any vehicle necessary in order to communicate with you, assuming you’re paying attention and heeding the signs.
Trevor Hart calls this force the “Organizing Intelligence” or OI. When Trevor asks the OI binary questions—he gets a “Yes” by feeling this opening in his heart and a sort of light that goes on in his pineal gland. The “No” is the absence of this yes. He can also ask an open-ended question and receive the answer as a sort of revelatory answer. Trevor is not alone in the way he communicates with the OI. I’ve met quite a few others Sacred Medicine healers who receive their guidance in similarly mysterious ways.
Now, I don’t have this same superpower, so the invisible force of love that communicates with me to guide me in the direction of Divine Will does so much more mysteriously. I get my guidance through synchronicity, direct knowing, my body compass, visions, dreams, bumper stickers, billboards, oracle cards, or the little voice of my Inner Pilot Light. But oh man, wouldn’t it be awesome if you just had this Magic 8 Ball inside of you like Trevor does?
Opening to Spiritual Guidance
What if this is a natural possibility for all of us, a sort of untapped human potential that is asking us to tune in, especially given the state of our planet right now? What if we are being called to serve love in our own unique way, and the instructions for this calling will require tuning into this kind of direct guidance?
Imagine if you could answer any question or seek guidance around any decision simply by asking your version of the Organizing Intelligence whether your choice was aligned with Divine Will or not? Wouldn’t life be so much simpler? Perhaps this is the direction humanity is moving toward. Maybe Trevor is from the future, and in the future, we will all have direct access to the OI. Perhaps this is how we will live in unity consciousness, at One with nature, with each other and with the Divine. Perhaps this is the only way we will survive the planetary crisis we now face. Or maybe that’s a pipe dream.
I do believe it’s possible to enter the dance that can happen when you and whatever you call the Organizing Intelligence decide to tango together in a sort of call and response. I asked Trevor to help me explain to people who are just getting started in this process what is possible in the realm of spiritual guidance and how they might begin to interface with this kind of supreme guidance so they could live more fully aligned with their soul’s blueprint. Trevor began by humbly admitting, “I don’t know, Lissa. I don’t know how this process works, but I have a hypothesis.”
Trevor said he suspects it begins with a sort of open curiosity, a willingness to wonder if there is some sort of Organizing Intelligence that can help us live our lives in alignment with the highest good. When married with a true sincerity, this openness, this willingness to inquire, activates an invisible process, and Something Larger than ourselves—call it consciousness—responds to our openness. This openness tends to call in certain signs and synchronicities, and you begin to get a feeling that life is listening to your requests for guidance. Have those signs and synchronicities been there all along and now you’re just noticing them? Maybe, but he doesn’t think that’s the whole picture. Are you “manifesting” those signs and synchronicities? Maybe, but he doesn’t believe that explains it either. He is adamant about saying that he doesn’t know how the mystery works, but he suspects that consciousness responds naturally to sincerity and openness, and something is cosmically activated in a way that you may experience as miraculous. Suddenly, it seems as if life is filled with messages that guide you on your path. You ask for help making a difficult decision, or you might ask for support doing something you don’t think you’re brave enough to do, and if it’s aligned with Divine Will, it feels like the universe reorganizes to help bring into being that which serves that greater good. It opens your heart and leaves you with feelings of awe and wonder.
Over time, your open curiosity grows into trust. Now you’re no longer just wondering whether there is guidance out there to help you live your life. Now, you know there is guidance. You go from blind faith to evidence-based faith, and at some point, you aren’t willing to make any big decision in your life without consulting this invisible force of love that you have come to trust. Trevor believes that this process magnetizes to you signs, inner knowings, dreams, and synchronicities that guide you. The natural world responds to your sincerity and trust, and you begin to sense that you are in a cosmic dance with an invisible beloved who loves you and will help you find your way when you feel lost.
The Law of Attraction?
I asked Trevor, “Is this related to all the New Age teachings around the law of attraction?” Those teachings have never sat right on my heart. Although I’ve had many experiences that show that “manifesting” can work, I’ve found myself averse to participating with those teachings. In some ways, it has felt intuitively like an abuse of spiritual power, a way to funnel spiritual power into getting what the ego wants. Trevor thinks this is wise, to resist the temptation to use our spiritual powers to attract things that our egos want, but not to judge those who are still seduced by the law of attraction.
Perhaps it is a necessary phase that we go through as spiritual beings — a way to move us out of our disempowered victim stories and show us what powerful creators we can be. Perhaps this teaching is part of the journey, a way to prove to us that we participate with the co-creation process, even if we’re not always successful at getting what we want with our law of attraction practices.
But Trevor and I both sense that the co-creation process is much more mysterious than what law of attraction teachers like those in The Secret suggest. After all, if it were a law — it would always work, right? Yet there are many disappointed readers of The Secret who still haven’t managed to manifest their Ferrari or call in a million dollars.
I asked Trevor, “How much do we have to try to be guided toward Divine Will? How much does intention matter? Do we have to be intentional with our request for help from the OI?” Trevor senses that the intention to surrender to the highest good, to be open to guidance, to be willing to submit our own personal will to Divine Will, is all the intention one needs. He believes we can learn to interface with the wisdom of our own soul, and if the soul gives its consent and it is aligned with the cosmic dance, we can petition the OI for something we want. But we must do so from a place of trust that what is in our highest good isn’t always the same as what we desire. We must be willing to be humble in the face of all that we don’t know.
The Journey from the Head to the Heart
Trevor thinks that we experience a fundamental shift when we make that long journey from the head to the heart, and the heart starts broadcasting a powerful frequency. He believes this power of the heart begins to call in experiences that feel like miracles, whether we are intentional about calling them in or not. The purity of the open heart, free of the ego’s attachments, resistance, and agendas, will magnetize the experiences that serve our growth and bless the world. Animals will be attracted to you. Money will tend to show up just as you need it for an act of service or self-care. People who serve your awakening and help you bring your calling into being are naturally drawn to you. Intuitions, dreams, and synchronicities will show up to affirm that you’re on your “path of power,” and this will ease the mind’s doubts and calm the ego’s tendency to grasp for what it desires.
What results is a profound sense of inner peace and an ever-deepening humility, a true experience of meaning and purpose in your life and your work, an easing of the kind of existential loneliness that plagues us when we’re caught up in the story of separation, and a magical feeling of knowing that you are surrounded by love, held in love, serving love, and made from love itself.
Recommended articles by Lissa Rankin:
- Relationships on the Spiritual Path
- The “Space Between Stories”
- How to Make Your Body Ripe for Miracles
- Are You “Spiritual But Not Religious?”
- A Lesson In Empathy
- Is Trump’s Immigration Ban a “Shock Event” Meant to Divide and Disempower Us?
- 9 Practical Tips to Help You Find Your Calling
- 10 Fun Ways to Reduce Your Cortisol Levels
- 6 Stories To Make You Believe In The Power Of The Mind To Heal You
- 7 Tips For Finding Your Tribe
- 10 Surprising Things That Trigger “Fight-Or-Flight”
- How To Keep Your Heart Open When You Lose a Pet
- 8 Signs You’ve Lost Touch with Your Intuition – and 10 Tips to Help You Reconnect
About the author:
Lissa Rankin, MD is a mind-body medicine physician on a grass roots mission to heal healthcare, while empowering you to heal yourself. She is the founder of the Whole Health Medicine Institute training program for physicians and healthcare providers, and the New York Times bestselling author of the books Mind Over Medicine: Scientific Proof That You Can Heal Yourself (2013), The Fear Cure (2014), and The Anatomy of a Calling (2015).
Lissa blogs at LissaRankin.com and created the online community HealHealthCareNow.com. She is also the author of several other books, a speaker, a professional artist, an amateur ski bum, and an avid hiker. She lives in the San Francisco Bay area.
Connect with Lissa on Facebook and Twitter, or visit LissaRankin.com.