Un-time is a very simple way of describing the three-way intersection of non-linear time, the theory that we're simultaneously living an infinite number of lives in endless parallel universes, and the shamanic belief that we manifest our own reality.
See - calling it un-time is much easier on the brain.
Challenges often appear daunting to us. Heck, depending on how tired or stressed out we are on any given day, simple tasks can seem like they're asking too much of our nearly depleted resources.
This is where un-time comes in.
Today I stand here facing the challenge before me. If I could step in a time machine and fast forward to tomorrow, I'd be in a place where I've already overcome the challenge and reached my goal. Instead of focusing on the mountain before me, I focus on the fact that when tomorrow dawns I will have already reached the summit. With that understanding in place, all I have to do is connect the dots.
It's all about where we put our focus.
We often aren't aware that we have a running dialogue going on in our head much of the time. For most of us, our inner dialogue tends to be filled with, "can't" and "don't want to" and "too hard" - or some version of those phrases. It's such a natural part of who we are that we aren't even aware of it - but it's there, running non-stop in the back of our mind.
Now imagine that, instead of being inside of us, that voice was standing next to us, constantly telling us, "This is too hard. You should quit now. This one is beyond your abilities. You don't really want to do this anyway."
No wonder we have such a hard time.
Un-time skips the inner dialogue. It's not about "can" or "can't." It becomes, "I've already done this." We look at "Tomorrow Me" and see the task complete, knowing that we will be standing in their place when the clocks catch up with our approach to un-time. Since we've already overcome the challenge before us, all we have to do is connect the dots. Each time our focus or strength wavers, we remind ourselves, "I've already done this" and look to "Tomorrow Me" as our inspiration; theirs is the hand that is stretching down to us to help us climb over that last hurdle.
When I start writing a new novel, I don't look at the blank screen and think, "How am I ever going to finish this?" Instead, I imagine "Tomorrow Me" editing the final draft, utterly thrilled with how the manuscript turned out. At that point, all I have to do is connect the dots. If I get frustrated I simply realize that's part of the process that "Tomorrow Me" went through to get there. Every challenge that comes up can be overcome - after all, "Tomorrow Me" has already overcome them on their way to success. Each day we approach the task without any pressure. We don't have to write ten pages; we don't have to write at all. All we need to do is to connect the dots - both the productive days and the unproductive ones - that carry us to "Tomorrow Me." We can even ask ourselves, "What did Tomorrow Me do in this situation?" and allow our imagination to fill in the blanks. The challenges have already been overcome; we simply have to live out the story like turning the pages in a book.
The un-time approach may seem overly simple, but it works.
In February I published Escaping Destiny which has received rave reviews. On May 13th The Awakening will be released. In November, my third novel, Remembering Tomorrow will come out.
Not bad for a guy with dyslexia. Or one who has a learning disability and took five years to graduate high school. Or who had a severe hemorrhagic stroke two years ago, lost large portions of his memory and had to relearn how to speak and write.
In between those novels I'll be publishing at least two non-fiction books on the brand of spirituality that you see here in my blog. How does one find themselves in a position where they can write books on spirituality?
You face your challenges.
In first grade I was beaten so severely that I was left for dead and literally had to crawl for help. Being drugged and kidnapped is a memory for me, not an episode of a television show. I know what it's like to live in a home so abusive that as I walked home from grade school I'd make peace with the fact that this may be the day they would kill me - simply because they weren't successful when they tried the day before. Words like "sodomy," "molestation," and "gang rape," are things that I've lived through more than once. When most kids move into a new house, their checklist for their bedroom doesn't start with "Replace doorknob with one that locks" (I'd carry it with me from home to home) and is followed by "Remove screen from window for easy exit." There were stretches of my life where being forced to the ground while a gun was held to my head was a daily possibility and others where I had to physically fight multiple attackers each and every day to protect my mom and my little brother. I've slept on city buses because doing so was safer than being in my own bed. Add to this a world of neglect, betrayal and abuse where each time you turned to someone for help, they'd turn on you as well.
Life may not have been pretty, but you know what it's like to stand in the shoes of the person that comes to you for help. It's one thing when you say to someone, "Here's my answer - I believe it will help," and another when you say, "Here's my map. I've already come through the place you're in and can show you a route through the darkness."
That's the raw material that makes a spiritual teacher.
Looking back on my life, there are countless stretches filled with things that people simply don't make it through. The challenges are just too big. When one of your favorite childhood memories is being sent to bed without dinner and the gratitude you felt as your mom smuggled you two slices of processed cheese (so you wouldn't be hungry) while you listened to the screams from the next room as her live-in boyfriend beat his sons senseless - you know you've walked a hard road. It's not your inner dialogue alone that tries to stop you - it's your inner dialogue and everything around you.
So you live in un-time. You believe that tomorrow will be better, that the bruises will stop hurting, that you'll be safe. And the bruises do stop hurting. Tomorrow is better, even if it's only in little ways - even if it's only in the pride that you made it there. Small, necessary successes encourage you to take on bigger goals of your own choosing. You learn that the same tools you've used for your survival, focusing on "Tomorrow Me" and knowing you'll get there, apply to every challenge ahead of you. Whether it's learning to trust or learning to cook, fighting for your survival or fighting to run that last half mile, the process is exactly the same. The challenges we face are unique to each of us and, in the moment, seem much bigger than they are in the rearview mirror. People offer all kinds of advice for facing your challenges and fighting through the obstacles before you. Me? I say leap-frog them. Focus on your goal and what it's like to achieve your success. Remember that "Tomorrow Me" that has already reached the finish line and understand that each challenge is something you've already overcome. When you're facing the challenge from that perspective, you're able to learn from the experience, simply because it's an "experience" and not a "battle." Appreciate the insight that "Tomorrow Me" gives you as you learn to see the lessons behind the challenge and use those lessons to grow. Each step, whether you're leap-frogging or trudging through makes you stronger; one approach is simply much harder than the other. Me? I prefer the easy way.
Take it from a guy who has turned "overcoming challenges" into an art form - living in un-time is my an effective way of reaching your goals. Like most things in life, it's all a matter of perspective.