Cover Image Credit to: Julien Ruiz, Flickr Feb 2014
A couple months ago, I popped a question on my instagram stories, asking peeps to write, which type of meditation topics I should create. Once I re-posted everyone’s answer, I then asked people to vote for their favorite, and by far, the overwhelming response was to create a meditation about “being ok with where you are at”.
I found that so incredibly fascinating.
Mostly because I can totally relate and was excited that others felt the same way~ I somehow would never have the common sense to give that answer for that questions though! After experiencing many uncertainties in my life, and being in situations where I loathed it, but then afterwards, being so grateful that they happened, because in hindsight, they taught me so much – a meditation would have totally helped!
I wondered whether or not I could develop that appreciation in real time so as not to suffer so much whilst the situation is happening AND also see whether or not my life was actually going in the right direction, like is this why I chose to descend onto this earth, am I going to regret this awkward phase of my life in the future, is this actually something I have to push through, or am I meant to switch it up entirely, how do I tell etc.?
Literally, there is nothing more anxiety inducing for me than to think about the future and the uncertainty that it brings, and then add on to, if there could be anything possibly more horrifying, than failing to live life in the right way – what ever that means!
So apparently I learned that there is no such thing as failing – Thank God!
Everything that occurs in your life happens for a reason.
There have been some things which have made it easier for me to live life over time, I have to say, and those are to be better at checking in with your self, getting better at paying attention to your life, such as the abundance of incoming signs and symbols.
Being open to, or being able to read signs and symbols of life, I feel, will unlock your gates to your inner authentic truth and understanding.
Have you ever had synchronicities, I like to call them ‘God-telling-you-something moments’, when you start to think about something, and you’re not even sure you are going to do it, want to do it or should do it, and then something in the outer-physical-naked-eye world reflects that exact thought to you in a soonish moment that makes you think of it in a new way, makes you feel confirmed that you should do it or nudges you forward?
For example thinking about a friend, and you check your phone, and they have texted you. You dream of a person, and you get a call from them the next day.
Those are like gentle God-telling-you-something moments.
Like those are nice, and you’re like thank you God! Stop it~ You have a little more faith, and you pay a little bit more attention, your eyes wake up a little more, and yep, cool!
But when there are those moments about, whether or not you should pursue the new goal of your life, butterflies are flying about your stomach, nervous as hell to take the first step? Wondering whether or not you should pursue that job, move to that country, take that research job, or take that endeavor that is going to be freaking hard, confusing and bring uncertainty? AND for sure, you know, that no one you know can call you up and tell you “yes, take that road”, do that thing, make that move AND THEN you get a sign, those are like shockwaves coursing through your veins telling you that YES, THAT’S IT!
God has many ways to communicate with you what you are doing is right with signs and symbols. Truth is these are not rare, there are TONS of symbols and signs in life that are available to you if you are open to it.
The key to seeing these signs and symbols are three,
1. Be open to it
2. Pay attention to your life, nothing is an accident.
3. Look it up if your unsure.
I’ll illustrate this with a recent example of my life, of how I knew, I should continue to be a Yoga teacher, I should in fact, do that 7 chakra healing workshop, and I should continue to teach that topic the way I thought it needs to happen.
1# Be Open to it
So by now, God already knows, I’m open to receiving signs and symbols. I literally revel, salivate for them to appear in my life, I’m like ‘Oh my god, what does this mean?’ I look EVERYTHING up, symbols in and dreams, what do certain type of animals mean, why did this unusual thing happen that has never occurred before - seriously it’s kinda of annoying and really taxing to go about researching EVERYTHING in life hahahaha moderation is needed with everything~ sometimes you can get so caught up in the symbols you fail to live your own life #realtalk #personalexperience
So God like knows, I’m a sign and symbol reader.
This openness and receptiveness I think is the first and foremost key to being open to receiving signs. I’m so surprised that sometimes people are so confused even after they have GIGANTIC signs that come into their life and they are still like “ hmm, I don’t know”.
In that case, honestly, the truth for some people is that you never want them, you don’t believe in them, you want nothing to do with signs and symbols! If your suspicious about whether or not signs or symbols exist, they are not going to come to you, you can forget about it, there is no chance, you will literally get suspicious symbol-logy in return that will confuse the heck out of you! You will not have the prerequisites to receive them!
You will reap what you sow essentially ;)
So when you are ready to become or already are a sign and symbols believer, naturally the universe transpires to help you – The Alchemist quote! The Universe will help you with just about anything, with decisions, giving you a confirmation, giving you a nod, what ever you need homie~
So if you are open, truly, and whole heartedly, get ready to start paying more close attention to your life, cause nothing is an accident.
2# Pay attention to your life – Nothing is an accident
As I was preparing for my 3-hour seven Chakra healing workshop, I think to myself, the seven Chakras and the Seven Valleys sound like their connected, they must be. At first, it just feels like a hunch. Then I start re-reading The Seven Valleys again for the hundredth time, and confirm the hunch through research, yup there is definitely something similar between the two, you could definitely draw similitudes – note that we are not even on 3# yet, but yes, research along the entire way!
The Seven Valleys describes the spiritual journey of the human soul, the journey that it goes through to progress to its ultimate desired destination, and the seven Chakra system are the 7 energetic wheel centers situation along the spine that each correspond to specific areas of your life – although one describes the progress of the human soul through mystical spiritual terms, the other describes it in energetic terms, both related, and equally related to the progress of the soul, but spoken from different perspectives.
Then a day later, as I have already forgotten about this mysterious connection between the seven chakras and the seven valleys, and whether or not I should teach my upcoming seven Chakra healing workshop in connection with the Seven Valleys. I notice a bird landing on the air conditioning box outside my window. This bird is so unusual; it’s not like the regular birds you see. In fact, I am super surprised that something like this even exists in my city. It has a long beak, and black and white wings, pretty cool! I get super excited and try to pull out my phone to take a picture, not wanting to make any sudden movements in fear that it will fly away. It ended up accompanying me peacefully there for a while.
3# Look up what the symbol means if you are unsure
I immediately think that’s a woodpecker. What else could have a beak this long? And I’m like really? All of a sudden I become a bird expert. I google wood peckers, and they all seem to have short beaks, and a red tough of hair on the top of their heads. This one definitely didn’t have red on it. So I was super unsatisfied with the search. But I was still rather confident it was in the woodpecker category. After posting it on social media, a friend tells me that this bird,
It’s called a Hoopoe.
I go back into google, start typing in hoopoe, and get all these biblical and Qur’anic references. First of all, before I read anything, I’m already excited that what I’m about to read is spiritually related. Here are some fun facts that I discovered,
1. The hoopoe appears over 30 times in the Quran
2. The hoopoe is the national bird of Israel (Israel is known as the Holy Land, the land where all holy religions are complete)
3. The hoopoe is related to a Persian mystical story.
When I look deeper into which Persian mystical story, I see that the Hoopoe was the leader of the bird in “The Conference of the Bird” poem-story.
In brief, ‘The Conference of the Birds’ is a story of a conference of all different species of birds in the world, they gathered together, and the Hoopoe suggests, that they go find the Simurgh, which means the phoenix in Farsi, their beloved, their ultimate Goal. And then the Hoopoe begins to say that they will need to traverse through the seven cities to find the Simurgh, and subsequently lists out into detail, the seven cities,
1. Valley of the Quest, where the Wayfarer begins by casting aside all dogma, belief, and unbelief.
2. Valley of Love, where reason is abandoned for the sake of love.
3. Valley of Knowledge, where worldly knowledge becomes utterly useless.
4. Valley of Detachment, where all desires and attachments to the world are given up. Here, what is assumed to be “reality” vanishes.
5. Valley of Unity, where the Wayfarer realizes that everything is connected and that the Beloved is beyond everything, including harmony, multiplicity, and eternity.
6. Valley of Wonderment, where, entranced by the beauty of the Beloved, the Wayfarer becomes perplexed and, steeped in awe, finds that he or she has never known or understood anything.
7. Valley of Poverty and Annihilation, where the self disappears into the universe and the Wayfarer becomes timeless, existing in both the past and the future.
Upon hearing this, some birds get excited; others say the journey is too long, others say it’s not worth it and fly away, others make up excuses not to go. Thousands of birds though, flock with the Hoopoe through the seven cities, at each city, some birds fail to progress to the next city, and by the time they get to the seventh, there are only thirty birds left.
Another meanings of simurgh is, 30 birds, “si” means thirty, and “murgh” means birds. When they arrive in the seventh city, they realize that there is only a mirror, in which to reflect the image of the 30 birds that made it to the final city. Symbolizing that our life’s journey is a quest to search for our own soul, our own True Image!
The Seven Valleys was written by Baha’u’llah in Farsi as a request for an elaboration for the story of The Conference of Birds, in other words, it is an spiritual interpretation of the Seven Valleys based on the poem written by Attar.
Having had the leader of the birds, a Hoopoe come by my window, as I have this deliberation in my own mind of whether or not I should connect the 7 chakras and the Seven Valleys together, confirms in my mind, that fo shizzle my nizzle, I should be connecting the dots. And it is in fact, simultaneously reminding me that my purpose in this life is to guide others along a spiritual path, and to never dumb down the mystical path in fear that people will not understand them, if I have only 30 birds, 30 souls follow me, then so be it, my roll is take them, not how many reach it’s final destination.
And indeed I began my workshop with 30 souls, 30 birds ;)
Did you like this blog post? Would love to hear how you have experienced synchronicities in your life? What has made it easier for you to know that you are going in the direction in your life? Leave a comment below, we would love to hear from you! As always, every courageous share is an opportunity for others to bring their own authentic selves forward and nearer into the world! If you found this helpful, consider giving it a heart shaped like and consider sharing it with your friends through the social tabs :)
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Nahal Haghbin is an Integrative Yoga Therapist in training from the Kripalu School of Integrative Yoga Therapy and a globally certified Yoga Alliance Yoga Teacher based in China. She conducts lectures, private and group asana, workshops and consultations on Yoga & Integrative Yoga Therapy in person and online. She works with menstrual disorders and with female health and wellbeing. Book an online yoga session with her here.