Whenever righteousness falters and chaos threatens to prevail, I take on a human body and manifest myself on earth.
Lord Krishna, Bhagavad Gita
He was sitting in a conference room with a group of experts at the onset of the Global Financial Crisis. He was a macro strategist whose job it was to predict the coming melt-down of ﬁnancial markets and economies that was just about to hit. His colleague from the troubled US mortgage area started the discussion and it soon became clear to everyone in the room that the ﬁrst dominos of a vicious big chain were starting to tip over. Yet, somewhere in this group dialogue something strange happened to him; a wonderful energy rose up his spine and peace penetrated him in a way that he had never experienced before.
Many books on spirituality describe the state that you are likely to experience when you are ‘there’. Few describe the process of waking up to a new reality as a transition to a new world. A spiritual awakening is a process and not an event. I was that ﬁnancial strategist who experienced the onset of the Global Financial Crisis as a symbol of my spiritual renaissance. I am an expert in the analysis of transitions — changes experienced by societies, economies and ﬁnancial systems. Perhaps that is the reason why I have been chosen to share with you the most magniﬁcent transition of them all, the journey home to our Source. A spiritual transformation can happen in unexpected stages of our lives and in surprising situations, just as I discovered it. Given that this book has found you, a similar transformation is probably in store for you. This is how the Tao typically works. As they say, when the student is ready, the teacher shows up.
A spiritual journey seems mystical and magic when you ﬁrst encounter it, yet at the same time it is carefully planned to the minute detail well ahead over decades. The Tao is a spiritual path that will stay magic for those who believe that it is, or a process that is explained to you in a language that every child could understand for those who seek rational answers. The Tao responds to you in whatever way it is most meaningful to you. I started my journey as a scientist. I have a Ph.D. in economics and have been a rational minded person all my life, but along my path new personality dimensions opened up. Today I would call myself as much an artist and connector as a scientist. I ﬁgure that is what traveling the Tao is all about — it is a journey towards wholeness.
You will hear the word experiment a lot in this book, just because I have lived my life for a number of years now as a big experiment and turned pretty much everything I learned upside down — not because it is fun, there actually have been a few scary moments along the way — but because I somehow had to. Once the Tao gets a hold of you, you no longer really have a choice. The analogy that comes to mind is that of a car wash. You spend your time searching for the ‘beyond’ very much as a driver looks out for the ramp at the car wash. But then you connect and after a little ﬁ ne-tuning you suddenly realize that a diﬀerent Force has taken over. At that time the best you can do is to let go of the steering wheel as you are no longer in control. Staying with the car wash analogy, a spiritual path is really a clean up process. All the aspects of the ‘I’ that are artiﬁcial are simply washed away until all that is left is the Core that has been around for thousands of years. This book shares my observations about this magniﬁcent synchronization process with a Force beyond our comprehension. There is no leap of faith required, you can experiment with this Force along the way and you will be in for a ride that is very real and simply magniﬁcent. Enjoy your journey!
Don't Worry, Be Happy
Along the Tao, everything is just perfect as is. The things that annoy you have the same importance in the end as all the pleasant surprises. Everything is intertwined in this magniﬁcent puzzle. Let me give you an illustration of the ‘Don’t Worry, Be Happy’ attitude. I was in Brussels on a business trip. I had asked a taxi to drive me to a particular building, but he stopped short of it and asked me to walk a little because traﬃc would be slow with all the one-way streets. “Pas de problem” I mumbled and actually felt it wasn't a problem at all. But when I walked I realized that it was quite a distance and that perhaps I should have insisted on being driven to my destination instead. In any case, because of this little ﬁeld trip I got a better understanding of the city and managed to walk home all the way to my hotel in the evening. Actually, I even thanked the cab driver mentally for my sudden pedestrian freedom.
On my departure day there was a big protest in the city and my taxi had to stop short of my destination and I had to walk to get my luggage at the hotel as I was on my way to the airport. I suddenly realized that had it not for the gentle push on day one to discover the city on foot, I would have been completely lost. I wouldn't have found my hotel, and even if I had, no taxi could have departed from there. My conclusion, whatever happens to you, don't worry, be happy, the resistance probably happens for a reason. Even if things seem inconvenient at the moment, you never know what they are good for in the end.
Perhaps you have noticed that my ﬁrst three encounters with the Tao all happened abroad. When I discovered this odd fact I realized that only when you are thrown a little out of your comfort zone – my French isn’t good at all – do you have a chance to open up to your environment. Change is good, react to the clues that come your way along the Tao and you have nothing to worry about.
I would emphasize here that some discomfort can be part of the journey as well; I hardly promise you eternal sunshine. We all know that every yin comes with a yang attached. What the ‘Don’t Worry, Be Happy’ philosophy claims is that we seem to be wandering along a path of healing and that every challenge we encounter is yet another invite of the Tao to overcome our fears, deepen our relationships with others and become whole in the process. If you always put your best foot forward, a little act of kindness will surely come your way. Just make the path of healing your working hypothesis and see what happens. Viewed from this perspective, why should we frown and worry?
Can you imagine waking up one day and experience a force—the Tao—opening up to you? You may have been intrigued by Eckhart Tolle’s The Power of Now or admired Neale Walsch’s ability to have conversations with God. Along the Tao, you will be able to experience both by allowing yourself to be synchronized with the flow of the universe. You will learn that every meeting with someone is a holy encounter and that all problems and opportunities that come your way are presents hand-delivered by the Tao just for you. There is no faith required to connect with the Tao; just be willing to experience life with a new perspective. Expect many changes in your life with the Tao as your coach, specifically:
Let your subconscious agenda and internal conflicts be revealed to you
Channel your energies in a new, purposeful direction
Learn to be guided by synchronicity
Be the Law of Attraction
Discover the Christian power of positive thinking
Flourish in the every professional setting by embracing the power of the 4 Cs:
creativity, communication, connectivity, and caring
Realize the love, peace, and security of the Psalm 23 traveler yourself