I used to think this a lot when I was in the midst of searching for a ‘spiritual’ path and exploring ideas such as the law of attraction. I used to think of finding the panel in the wall to push, or the right part of the bookcase to touch, to reveal a secret doorway or hidden room. I also used to think of it in terms of go with the flow; if it’s coming easily, it’s the right path. My husband says that if things are too hard then maybe you aren’t doing them the right way and would find it easier if you changed method. This is the opposite of the ‘no pain, no gain; life is hard’ conditioning we are all subjected to. But as one of the last bits of spiritual advice I listened to said: look what the herd is doing and do the opposite.
But what does ‘push where it moves’ mean to me right now? Because right now I don’t seem to have to push much at all.* I don’t even seem to have to ‘write’ anymore, it just comes. And although I am not looking externally for signs and assistance (as I used to when I was first getting into all this stuff), they seem to be coming anyway: coming out of the supermarket with no clue as to where I had parked the car, I see a shiny red car and remember walking past it on my way in. Later the same day I park at the beach car park, look up and see a shiny red car parked next to me. It had a parking ticket in the window facing me, which reminded me I needed to get one; I would certainly have forgot otherwise. (The other week I parked at the train station and although I remembered to buy a ticket, I left it in the machine and didn’t put it in my car. Happily I did not get a penalty ticket.)
Maybe I don’t need to push where it moves anymore. Maybe all I, or anyone, needs to do is to raise myself up to my highest vibration and let ‘it’/ the universe/me do the rest. This is beautifully described here in an interview on Desert Island Discs with the violinist Nicola Benedetti. This is such a great interview, I really recommmend listening to it, nothing to do with whether you know who she is or are into the music, it is just fascinating. (I have written about this before in my book about my spiritual awakening, but this is what I was listening to on the day I drove to bathe in the North Norfolk sea in early January, as part of my commitment to the spiritual path.)
Also, although I wouldn’t have described it that way at the time, it is how I met my husband: I had just done a swimathon which had meant ten weeks of training, towards the end swimming 160 lengths three times a week, so I was fit and healthy. I was baking cakes all the time and writing women’s erotica. I was going out all the time, including to weddings by myself, following the ‘never refuse an invitation’ advice, which meant, it was pre vegan days, eating a lot of pizza. John told his friend about this new woman he had met who had brought him homemade cake and had her erotic stories for sale in Waterstones and his friend said, you might as well just marry her.
New motto: All you have to do is nothing**
New little writerly rituals: putting a song in and then listening to it as I proof read (not always successfully I know).
Anyway, for me now, ‘push where it moves’ means Jenga. But why bother being gentle? It’s going to fall anyway. It’s really just about making something fall but other people taking the blame for it, or everyone making something fall but one person taking the fall. And all the time you could just knock it down with one swipe of your hand anyway. Or not build it in the first place. Or build something else, a car, a house, a path. Yes, a path: straight or windy, zigzag, steep, broken… But I don’t suppose that would make a very good Christmas game would it?
*Except to make myself do decorating/cleaning; of which I am proud to report that I have done two hours of today already, and so can happily justify being snuggled up in bed right now with the heater on, writing this ensconced in a pile of pillows and blankets.
**Except painting and cleaning, of course…