Switch to a Better Channel

By Keith Varnum

Peril, catastrophe and disaster.

These are my friends, allies and mentors.

Appearing as enemies on the surface, these seeming threats are my most helpful teachers on my Earth adventure. These apparent foes repeatedly show me how we humans have awesome power over our fate and circumstances in life.

When faced with an expected outcome we don’t like, we have an option. We can open to an alternative scenario, another framework, a different set of rules. I jokingly call this handy ploy “switching channels.”

I discovered that we all have the ability to change the channel or perspective from which we are viewing—and creating!—our Earthvision series. When the plot line goes from situation comedy to melodramatic soap opera, we can do something about it!

We can simply let go of our old way of viewing the world and allow a fresh point of view to emerge. When we decide to turn the dial, we find ourselves shifted into a new reality—a different station with a new story line that has a much better ending!

Grace to the Rescue

I first noticed this saving gift of grace when I was a kid. I’ve always enjoyed the thrill and challenge of dangerous situations.

On the ice rink, I discovered that if I completely collapsed into a fall, I came out unscathed. Caught in a precarious position when tackled on the football field, I went with the force of the hit to tumble out of harm’s way. When in a sharp skid while driving, I embraced the skid by turning directly into it to straighten the car. When my feet slipped on a rocky trail, I went with the twist or slide and landed—like a cat—upright and stable. Like the proverbial drunk falling safely down the staircase, I used to sled down a steep set of wooden stairs on a makeshift cardboard toboggan, deliberately crashing at the bottom and never getting hurt.

I practiced the knack of letting go in everyday situations, so that I was able to successfully apply the skill in much more urgent and crucial predicaments.

The Alchemy of Abandonment

As a teenager, the art of “abandonment to the moment” saved my neck in several near-miss car encounters. Attempting to pass a vehicle on the winding mountain roads of my home state of Pennsylvania, I found myself on several occasions eyeball-to-eyeball with the driver of an oncoming auto. With both cars going sixty miles per hour, my next stop in five feet and two seconds was the Pearly Gates. Each time, I instinctively let go—of the steering wheel, my projected scenario and my programmed ideas of physics. Voila! I ended up rattled but untouched on the side of the road.

When Up Against the Wall, Choose Magic

In my young twenties, as a professional journalist covering floods, hurricanes, earthquakes, accidents and assorted disasters, I observed this miraculous dynamic of super-natural powers on countless occasions. When confronted with a choice between the dire prognosis of their current belief system and an unknown outcome if they let go of those beliefs, people will often choose to let go. They release their preconceptions of how the physical universe works. They let go of their need to have events fit their expectations of cause and effect. The reward for such surrender of one’s rigid beliefs and expectations is a much preferable outcome—in fact, a miracle—or, at least, what we call a miracle: an occurrence outside our box, our paradigm, beyond what we think or believe is possible.

Your Beliefs, or Your Life!

I’ve witnessed people lifting two-ton trucks, ripping open steel elevator doors, and performing medical procedures they had no way of knowing how to conduct. How? By choosing to go with an unknown future instead of a known past. When a person’s own life, or the well-being of another, is at stake, people often decide to drop the limitations taught by our culture.

When it’s dramatically obvious that a known past will lead to a known—but fatal—future, people will often choose to give up their familiar, current beliefs and allow something fresh and new to occur.

There Is No Quota on Miracles

As a young journalist, a light bulb lit up inside my head: If we can tap these super-normal abilities in a crisis, why can’t we access these extraordinary powers at will, whenever we want? Thus began my lifelong quest for the Holy Grail—the sacred vessel that holds the nectar of the gods, the knowledge of how to recapture our true nature of grace.