If you’ve been following my articles for a while, you may have come across my story of how I left my corporate job to pursue my passion as a spiritual writer and life coach. What I’ve rarely expressed is the struggle and the resistance life was throwing my way before I could pursue this path full-time. This event (and many others that happened to me after that) are a classic example of the difference between destiny and free will. And today, I’m here to share my first-hand experiences in hopes of inspiring you to understand the Universe a little better.
I am also going to be talking about spiritual disconnection and feeling like you’ve lost your spiritual side (aka dark night of the soul again). Followed by all the story-telling, I’ll be sharing a variety of tools for you to understand and master your life. So keep reading to the very end!
Reliving the “Dark Night of the Soul”
I believe that the very first stage of spiritual awakening is the dark night of the soul. It’s where you’re beginning to question everything about yourself, about your life, and perhaps about death.
I was shaken awake back in 2017. And as someone who started experiencing tens of synchronicities every day, from 11:11 on the clock and on number plates, to often seeing the same name multiple times before meeting that person, it was strange to me that suddenly, in August 2018, the signs almost completely stopped.
It was an instant disconnect from the Universe.
That initial feeling of being in the flow with life’s grand plan was gone. Overnight!
The very anxieties and frustrations of human life that I had thought I’d overcome through my awakening were back. For months, I felt confused about why the Universe had shut its doors to me. And like a ghost, I felt lost and lurking my way from one day to the next. Unfortunately, I became so shaken by this veil being put back on me that at times I would stare at the clock just to see it hit 11:11.
This whole experience led me to believe I was experiencing the dark night of the soul again.
What had changed?
There were two things in my pipeline at the time – the desire to get married and the desire to quit my highly misaligned, draining corporate job.
Coming from a traditional Indian family, I hadn’t bothered looking for someone for myself (read, love marriage) – I was open to destiny unfolding for my highest good and to the idea of an arranged marriage. So the search began and my parents spent months going through lists of prospects.
One particular guy was of keen interest to my parents because we knew his family and we had distant relatives on both sides to vouch for each other. However, I wasn’t willing to meet him because he lived in Canada, and I wasn’t ready to move across countries to be with someone.
I held my ground for 3 months, certain that I could outsmart my fate. In the meantime, I continued brainstorming different avenues I could explore that would help me get out of my job. It was that deep turmoil that led to me creating the popular tool, Purpose Matrix.
But things started to spiral down for me and everything in my life started becoming very difficult. If I would apply for jobs, I would never hear back. Every time I tried to act in a different direction by trying a certification or new training (hypnotherapy), something would happen to disrupt my enrolment. It began to feel like life was shutting down all my efforts. I was losing the fight against my own destiny and I had no idea why everything I did with my free will wasn’t working.
It took a while to see – I was meant to meet this guy. I didn’t know at the time what the meeting would lead us to. But lo and behold, one thing led to the next. And today, I’m sitting in front of the computer he gifted to me on my most recent birthday, to write this article for you.
We got married shortly after I stopped denying my destiny. And yes, I did move across the world to be with him. The funny thing is, the week I said yes to marrying him was also the week I heard back from 3 places for an interview (that I no longer needed)!
Wait – so is there no such thing as free will?!
If the situation leading up to my marriage was one-off, I would have eluded that my soul contract with my husband had more weight than my egotistical ideas about where I want to live as a wife. But a similar situation happened with me again, in January 2022 that had nothing to do with soul contracts. It had to do with my career.
Back then, even though I was doing really well as a writer and coach, I began experiencing a emptiness and hollowness. Just like another dark night of the soul. At that point, I used to believe that I was living my “life purpose”. So, not feeling happy in-spite of all that I had deeply disturbed me. Here’s a snippet of me detailing that experience, as I was delivering a workshop:
As I dealt with this inner turmoil, my coaching practice also started slowing down. Clients stopped renewing and potential leads either ghosted our sessions or had the weirdest reasons to not join. There came a point where I went from full-time coach to not coaching at all. A part of me believed that my career as a coach was over.
I kept asking for signs, hoping the Universe would show me what was missing. How could this very aligned path be wrong for me?!
It was a strange unfolding over the next 6 months: from being guided to start interpreting my dreams again while studying Charlie Morley’s phenomenal course, to seeing a dream where I was meant to share my story of suffering and misunderstanding my purpose… it all finally clicked.
I was missing the higher perspective.
As humans, we forget that we’re much bigger and beyond all these Earth problems. This forgetfulness is what I describe as Soul Amnesia. Because we become so identified with our problems, we begin to feel “incomplete”. And so, our destiny is actually a lifelong, series of events that help our soul experience completeness and wholeness within itself. How? By realizing:
- While other people, places, and careers can help us feel great (joy, love, excitement), the feeling itself is coming from within us. WE are the source of our joy, not those people, places, or career choices.
- Because we don’t believe that we are the source, destiny helps us see that – one, it’s possible for us to experience higher levels of joy (by introducing us to wonderful people, places, and careers). And that two – even if that experience is taken away from us, we can still feel deep joy again. Best proof? If imagining something can make you feel happy, then clearly, YOU are the source of happiness because what you imagined isn’t real right now. You are simply projecting your happiness onto that thing.
- When something is taken away from us, we may not immediately realize we are the source. We may feel dejected, hopeless, and depressed. But if the “pattern” of heartbreak continues to repeat (and it does, lifetime after lifetime), we eventually catch on. We question what’s happening – why are we “attracting” pain. And ultimately, we begin to see that pain is a natural byproduct when we project our happiness onto things that are bound to change. If we can find that source of joy within ourselves, then nothing on the outside would shake us. And then, destiny’s job would be done, so essentially, we would become masters of our destiny.
That may sound wonderful, but how we do apply this knowledge to practical life? Let’s dive into some tools and frameworks.
3 Ways We Experience Destiny and Free Will
In my Soul Amnesia – Remembering Life’s True Purpose workshop, I share this example:
When we look at a mirror and don’t like what we see, we will either try to change how we look or change how the mirror is reflecting us. Similarly, in real life, when something happens that makes us uncomfortable, we will either make a change within ourselves or try to bring change to the world around us.
When we are only focused on our feelings of good and bad, we are heavily identified with our ego-mind. We live in a duality of right and wrong. This means we live in an experience of “complete and incomplete”.
And as long as we are so dualistic, our destiny (basically, life) is playing a big role. It’s constantly throwing contrast our way, to see the duality in more extreme (and hopefully awakening) ways. How do we get out of this trap?
There are 3 ways we can live our life:
- On autopilot (unconscious);
- Beyond conscious and unconscious living.
It’s when we’ve moved beyond the duality of conscious and unconscious living, that we can free ourselves of pain, and understand our wholeness. And like I said before: become masters of our destiny!
So what does it mean to live beyond conscious and unconscious living?
In the months leading up to the workshop, the Universe blessed me with two frameworks that changed my life. One is an ancient spiritual practice and the other is a modern, psychology and biology-based learning. Removing my own bias, I believe these tools can be life-changing for you if they resonate and you put them into practice.
I know that things have taken a huge turn ever since I grasped this concept and these tools. And I’d love to share them with you.
What is the soul? What is the point of all this healing? Why don’t I feel like an infinite, eternal being?
And what is my life’s purpose? Why don’t I remember what I’m here to do?
How will I know when I’ve found my “higher calling”? And do I even have a special mission here?
If you’ve been asking such questions and want a clear roadmap on how to live a purposeful life and be in touch with your soul, this power-packed, 90-min workshop is for you. Join me on a journey full of spiritual revelations, deep metaphysical discussion, and a little bit of 9th-grade physics. It’s time to truly wake up to who you are and remember what you’re here to do.
The idea that destiny is a bad guy can prevent us from appreciating its true purpose in our life. And once we understand the role destiny plays, as well as the roadmap for freedom (free will), we set ourselves for true healing and lasting joy. I hope this article inspires you to look at the Universe’s mystical musings differently.
Do share your thoughts in the comments below. I’d love to hear from you!
Vasundhra is the Founder & Writer of My Spiritual Shenanigans. After seeing 11:11 on the clock one fateful night, her life turned around. Ever since, she has been blending modern psychology and ancient spirituality, to help herself and people around the world elevate the quality of their lives.
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