A couple years ago I was encouraged to look into my future, as my mind imagined it, to see what I was heading towards. What did I see? Nothing. Blackness. Emptiness.
That wasn’t what I wanted. But it was what I imagined was likely to happen. It was the only possible reality that I could see at the time.
And while it is true – at some point in my future there will most likely be blackness, as space is mostly empty and black and all my atoms and electromagnetic energy will eventually be going out into space – it’s not the entirety of the truth. My future was also most likely involve many, many other experiences (including the rather mundane one I’m having right now of biting into crispy and gelatinous, chia seeds and typing on my computer).
But at the time, all I saw was blackness, and it made me ill, literally, to look at it. It was terrifying to me.
But then, during a training program that I was participating in, I was given the exercise to share my experience with someone else, to take them with me as I went into the blackness. And their experience of it was so very different from mine. My virtual traveling companion felt peace in the black empty space of my mind. This allowed me to see the possibility that my fears of the blackness were at least partially due to my particular approach to it, rather than something inherent in the reality of the blackness itself. The blackness was really just neutral territory, no more, no less.
But I was still not comfortable with the fact that this was all that I could see when I looked into my mind’s idea of my future. So I asked someone else to help.
Interestingly, I don’t remember what he said to me in response.
But later on, he gave the whole training group an exercise where, instead of asking us to look into our own minds to imagine our future, he asked us to imagine that we are heading towards a beautiful, warm light.
Usually, when hearing something like that, my defenses would shoot up and reject it as being too silly, and I’d refuse to even try to go there. But at the time, it was exactly what I needed, and I allowed myself to go. It was so simple, and so clearly right.
Now I can look back and realize that I’d previously been so obsessed with finding some very specific vision of the future for myself that I’d lost sight of the bigger picture. I’d been trying to look at the future in way too much detail – like trying to use a telescope to look at the night sky and ending up with the viewfinder pointing at nothing. Using a broader view, and aiming my mind in a different direction, I suddenly saw the sun, a star of brilliance and power and magnificence. Duh!
There are many, many, many futures in store for us. Always. And that’s because what makes you you are a vast number of different particles and waves, and all those different particles and waves will eventually expand outwards to reach from one edge of the universe to the other – placing your whole life throughout the entire awesome picture that is space and time.
So, if the view of your future that you’ve been looking at hasn’t quite been sitting well with you, then simply move your focus around – zoom out, side to side, up and down, and maybe in – until you find the part of your future that you feel most inspired by right now. Because sometimes black emptiness helps you feel peaceful, and other times the stars are where you most want to be.