The Secret To Everything
Manifestation Manifesto Part 2
Here is the secret that everything in this series is based upon: the truth is that we have power and choice over what we do with our lives. This is true not only for our inner world (thoughts, emotions, creativity) but our actions—what we choose to do. We are responsible for our inner state (our microcosm) and our outer actions (our macrocosm.) Most people only realize this truth for their inner world or outer world—but when you connect the two, you no longer live in the illusion that life happens to you. You realize that you happen to life. If you wanted to get philosophical, you could say that this idea is simply existentialism. It's what Sartre and Beauvoir and Camus were talking about in those French cafes while sipping absinthe. However, you do not need to wear a black turtleneck and a beret to see the world this way. It is simply about taking ownership of your life, taking responsibility for the story that you are creating for yourself with this life of yours. Once you take responsibility, you also have the beginning of power to choose what you want to do with your life.
Unfortunately, a lot of people don't want to admit that they have control over their own life. If we pretend that we are not the ones in control, then it means that we are not at fault. We can blame our problems on others: our family, our boss at work, our significant other, the government, or even perfect strangers. If we are not the ones calling the shots, if we are not the captains of our own little boats, then we can complain that life is unfair, and we can blame mistakes and shortcomings on anything beside ourselves. In the short term that feels good, because you can look at your life and when you don't like what you see, you can say, "Not my problem! Not my circus, not my monkeys!" To that I say, "Au contraire, mi amigo!" When you accept that you are responsible for your life, even when things don't go your way, you also give yourself the power to make things go well. This is the double edge sword of responsibility.
We are the ones responsible for the life we live, and the world we make for ourselves. This is both a simple and obvious truth and a huge and cosmic mystery, a sacred teaching. Don't get distracted by saying—"what about so-and-so? They have it so easy!" The only version of the world you will ever experience is that of your own life, and you are the writer, the director, and the star of that movie. This Manifestation Manifesto series shares everything you need to make the movie of your life what you want it to be.
The thing about the fact that you create your own world is that you are doing this whether you choose to or not. You cannot abdicate this responsibility. We live in a world that is shaped by our beliefs— and this is as true for the world as it is for the individual. The stories we tell ourselves matter. They define the actions we think are possible. Taking control of the story of your life begins with accepting responsibility for your life.
I'll tell you a true story: When I was in my twenties, I had two friends who lived in absolute filth and squalor. They shared a two-bedroom apartment and they simply never cleaned! These boys were complete and utter slobs. You can probably imagine how gross the living room was. I would visit them on the way to the pub, and you had to step over garbage to walk inside the apartment. The floor was littered with empty pizza boxes, dirty cans filled with cigarette butts, the living room table was crowded with half empty soda cups and Taco Bell wrappers. Of course, they both blamed each other for not doing a fair share of the cleaning.
In hindsight, I realize my two friends in their absolute dumpster of a living room were not just lazy, they were pretty damn depressed. Your early 20s can be a very challenging and confusing time! You might ask: were they depressed because they lived in squalor? Or did they live in squalor because they were depressed? The answer was, of course, both. Both young men had their own unique history of challenges, scars, setbacks, that had got them there, growing up, just like every single human being.
One day, one roommate decided to get his shit together. He started by cleaning the whole apartment top to bottom. Here is the important thing: he didn't just clean his own dishes and his own leftover pizza boxes. He cleaned all of it. He stopped using the excuse of "it's not my responsibility", and blaming his roommate, even though the roommate never did change and is still a schlep to this day. What had kept him from doing that previously? The perspective that "it wasn't fair" for him to have to do his roommate’s dirty dishes! When he took responsibility for everything he could do, he took control of his world.
Once the place was finally clean, he found he had new energy and new momentum. He was no longer having his psychic battery drained by living in a total dump. Soon after that he moved out and got his own place. For him, this was the start of a much bigger positive life change. He put in the work—but it took expanding his bubble of what he was willing to take on before he could move on.
When we take control of our world, we find that this is not just about the physical objects around us—it means taking control of our inner state. You can call it spirit, psyche, energy, mood, vibe, emotions—all of these are words for the world within ourselves. (It is just as important to take good care of your inner being as your outer surroundings.) The exercises presented in this book are about doing the chores and the cleaning up of the inner world. The Manifestation Manifesto starts from the idea that we can cultivate this inner world, and in fact the inner and the outer world are interconnected; that is what it means to be human. By accepting responsibility for this totality, we can steer both our inner and outer worlds, and create the life that we want. These newsletters are going to jump around, braiding together 3 different areas.
The Manifestation entries will be based explore one simple idea: You Create Your World! I will talk about how you create your own worldview (which in turn shapes you), and use the power of your beliefs to open up infinite possibilities. Another important element, I’m calling: Raise Your Vibration, I will explain the practical nuts and bolts methods of creating positive change in the physical world, to raise your inner vibrations; and by the way, if talk of vibes makes you feel kinda funny, you can just substitute the word attitude and it will all still make sense. In the third series, Inner World: Spells, I wills how to affect change within yourself. Each of these elements are facets of the whole: how you can take control of life. Taken together, the techniques in The Manifestation Manifesto illustrate how you can live the life that you want, so that you can become the fullest expression of yourself, which I believe is why we are all here. (As the series continue these categories will become links to help navigate the different ideas.)
To harness the full power of belief we must get good at shifting gears, to glide easily between the gears of doing the tangible work, and also doing the inner work. You can think of this newsletter as a guidebook to making the movie of your life. Most people’s takes on manifestation just focus on one or the other side of the coin: the inner game or the outer game, the power of thoughts or of just getting things done. The inner game stuff ends up just talking about the spirit, and attitude, and ends up leaving the impression that all you need to do is be positive and you can make anything you want happen just by wishing and being a nice person. This is the New Age take. The way of looking at things is the productivity/business-y, “Rise and Grind” mentality, which promotes the idea of just pulling yourself up by your bootstraps through hard work and being super productive. Both of these ways of looking at things are on to something but they are missing half the picture. The secret is you need to connect both, do the inner work and the outer work and you can accomplish anything. That’s why in future installments we are going to explore everything from super practical nuts and bolts stuff like to do lists and scheduling, to stuff that’s more out there and fun and frankly weird and woo woo (but really works!)
The secret to the movie of your life is: realize you play all of the parts, you are the writer, you are the director, and you are the star in the lead role. Of course, a great movie brings all of these things together, since the writing, the directing, the acting are all equally important. You can learn to write the scenes ahead, to plan out what you hope to achieve. This is the power of belief, the magic of manifestation. Unfortunately, most books on manifestation stop there, which is like writing a film script but never actually making the movie! That is why in parts two and three of this book, we will move on to real-life application. This is all about turning the script of your hopes and dreams into reality so that you can dream it and then do it. This is advice for real life stuff: the movie being made. It's your life! How do you want to live it?