By Marco Alati
Sunday morning: I wake up with a strange desire to go to Malibu. I imagine a perfect day lying down on the beach, getting tanned, enjoying a Corona while setting my little beer belly free. Hoping to get inspired by the athletic people jogging with their unmatchable set of abs or the various yogis in strange positions. I never say no to my instinct! So, I decide to get up and get there pretty early. I find a perfect spot overlooking the vastness of the scenery, and I start my daily routine of listing my blessings, as part of my internal work, or what I like to call my Temple Work. As I am admiring and feeling grateful for the stunning landscapes around me, I see a little snail in the middle of the street desperately trying to reach the grass on the sidewalk, where I would presume her lunch awaits – or I should say dinner considering its pace. Without giving it too much thought, I grab the snail by the shell and I gently place it on one of the most flourishing plants. I go back to my spot feeling a sense of pride for being thoughtful and helpful, I look back and smile at the snail nestled in the gorgeous nature of Malibu. Before I get ready to jump into the water, a crazy thought hits my mind and I completely zone out.
What did the snail experience? What did it perceive while it was being carried? As I ask myself these questions I start to imagine what impact my simple action might have had on that tiny snail’s worldview…
I imagine a little snail-girl in the middle of the street “running” towards an incredibly far and gigantic plant. Checking the time, she realizes that she will never make it home in time for the last episode of her favorite TV show, the episode where snail-mother finally reveals to her snail-son that he did not come out of one of her hundreds of eggs. The little snail-girl crawls as fast as she can while a group of ants surpass her with a mischievous smile making fun of her slow pace. “Why do I need to be so slow?” thinks the upset snail. “If I were an ant I would have definitely made it home on time. Oh! Snail-God, please let me be on time for my favorite episode!” …and all of a sudden the little snail-girl begins to levitate while some magical supersonic speed force brings her to that exact plant fairly instantaneously. The snail moves her slimy body left and right stunned that it just took her a few seconds to cover an incredible distance. “Oh My God, it must be a miracle!” thinks the astonished snail. “I must have been teleported by Snail-angels or something like that! My prayers have been heard… I cannot wait to tell Mrs. Snail-Lady what just happened, I know she won’t be able to keep her mouth shut and I will end up on the Oprah Snailfrey Show. I have to thank Snail-God for getting me home in time for my favorite episode. I cannot wait to see whose egg the snail-son came from.” As I come out of my day dream, I have a moment of clarity. So, what actually happened is that I just simply grabbed the slow animal and sped up its way home. What the lucky snail experienced is most probably an incomprehensible-to-the-snail event that has no seeming linear explanation for its perceptions.
And what about our Perception of Reality? What makes us think that our perceptions are able to detect, measure and ultimately explain every phenomenon and every process that we experience?
Perception is a very limiting pair of eyeglasses through what we use to compare, give meaning and label the information of our Reality. When we see the color red, for example, our brain registers it as red due to the immediate comparison in our mind’s database of what blue, green, and yellow look like. Scientists studied the color-perception of different people around the world, and they were surprised to find that there are tribes in Africa that have no concept of the color blue. The subjects studied did not have any color-blindness issues, yet they don’t see blue on any object. Does that mean that the color blue doesn’t exist in Africa? Interestingly enough, we have no concrete answer to this question. The color blue surely exists for us, but it surely doesn’t for them. How is that possible? Who is considered right, and who is wrong? Maybe they are two different lenses of the same reality? Going back to my inspirational snail. I wonder which experience was closer to the real truth, the snail’s or mine? We cannot 100% eliminate the idea of Snail-God, or some extraordinary force that made me pay attention to that tiny shelled creature in the middle of the street, rather than a simple and empty act of kindness. We tend to rely on our dogmatic point of view with such attachment that we forget that it’s only one perspective. We often laugh, judge or even condemn people who question our limited perceptions and present, new and foreign ideas. People such as Galileo and Einstein pushed the envelope so far that they were faced with great scrutiny before we started to accept the challenges of change and a new shift in our worldview.
But how can we go beyond our system of perceptions?
I believe that the only way for us to bypass our limited worldview is by allowing ourselves to become childlike and opening ourselves up to the wonder and marvel of every single moment. Maybe the key to accessing the fullness of the field of infinite potential is simply to trust that our world always takes care of us in the best way possible. I strongly believe that if we operate with that mindset, it will allow us to dive into the awe of this magical process. We will find ourselves dancing fluidly with this great higher intelligence, this field of information, as we begin to invite frames of life into our existence that reside outside of our tiny box of perception. By making this simple leap of faith, we start living – exactly like children (or my snail-friend) – on a constant vacation, an everyday playground called life, where beauty and lightness express themselves through epic adventures, moments of creative chaos, and – why not!? – a few miracles… or what I like to call phenomena that science hasn’t yet been able to comprehensively explain.
As Eric Pearl, founder of Reconnective Healing, says: Let’s not confuse absence of proof with proof of absence.
Maybe, while we are striving to enjoy every single instant of our life, an imperceptible, incomprehensible giant hand is picking us snails up, and helping us arrive to our intended purpose. And we don’t even know it.