Saturday, June 7, 2014
The Google choice: glimpsing a parallel life
Rhinebeck, New York
"Suppose you could go back in time and be present to a younger self in his or her own Now time. You could provide counsel and mentoring in a time of confusion and vulnerability. You could be the invisible friend for that lonely kid. You could go to that wounded younger self who was shamed or violated and assure her, You'll make it through. You'll survive. I promise.
"You could caution a younger adult self on life choices, since you know far more about the consequences, for yourself and others."
I am talking to a group of intrepid dream travelers who are preparing to make a journey across time, with the aid of shamanic drumming, into the mind and circumstances of one or more younger selves. I know it is possible to do this. I am quite certain that my sick and lonely boy Robert - the one who had double pneumonia twelve times between the ages of three and eleven - would have had an even harder time making it through without the active support and companionship of a forty-something Robert who learned to fold time in order to be present to him when he most needed a friend. I have described how this worked in The Boy Who Died and Came Back.
I am getting the group ready to journey upstream, over the rivers of their lives, to one or more points where the intervention of an older self in the mind of a younger self may be helpful, even essential.
I can't refrain from joking about less enlightened things we might try to do. "You could try to slip your younger self the name of a winning horse. Or tell your younger self to buy Google stock at the IPO, lots of it."
Most people chuckle, but a very gifted and sensitive dreamer shoots me a look of serious concern. It's okay, I want to tell her. We're not really going to go back in time to push Google stock when the company is going public.
Now I'm drumming, and conscious of our travelers plunging back through time to enter the minds of their younger selves. I sense one of them leaping the waterfall, into the space before birth, to enter the amniotic lake.
This is going well. I check in on a couple of versions of my younger self. Then I decide, for the heck of it, to get together with my younger adults self on the eve of the Google IPO. I find him on a pleasant beach in the Pacific Northwest. He's aware of the Google offering, and is even talking to a friend about it.
I find myself pushing him to get in on the IPO. Find out how to order stock - the Google offering is different from most - buy a lot, and keep on buying over the next year. Google is going public at $85 a share. People think that's a high price, but ten years later the stock will be trading at over $550. Take out a home equity loan. Buy lots.
Uh-oh. I suddenly realize that this suggestion has just caused a split in my personal universe. I see, like a movie running fast-forward, what my life becomes after I buy thousands of shares of Google. I have tons of money and three houses. But all this quick cash has encouraged me to make some disastrous personal choices, and it has seriously deflected me from my calling. I make lots of donations to good causes, but my own sense of a cause has lapsed, and this makes me profoundly discontent, since I am not much good unless I feel I am serving a cause.
I am still drumming for the group, but I feel reality shimmer. In the post-Google universe, I am not here, in the Pavilion at the Omega Institute, drumming for the group while the rain falls in the green landscape around us. And I don't want that rich but hollow parallel life.
I will myself fully back to where I have chosen to be, in my present life. When I sound the recall and tell people to move around, wiggle their bodies, and find themselves fully back in physical focus, Now, I do this myself with special vehemence.
I know, of course, that there really is a post-Google IPO universe where one of my countless parallel selves is living the consequences I saw. That universe no doubt existed before I made my journey back to a point of decision. I am glad that, on my present event track, I made the choice I made then, and again.
Now I am walking the dog in early sunlight. There are worse things to do than walk a little dog around a city park. I am not doing this in that post-Google world.