Not all the Buddhas in the world will solve all our problems.

The Woo Woo Doesn’t Always Work

Not all the Buddhas in the world will solve all our problems.
Not all the Buddhas in the world will solve all our problems.

The Woo Woo doesn’t work for someone, yet it does for someone else

For the third session of his online course, Charles Eisenstein did something… quite unorthodox.

He invited someone to share their story of how the “woo woo” did NOT “work”.
Their story went like this: someone was experiencing a Serious Difficulty, they did all the woo woo “natural” “alternative” stuff, but the Serious Difficulty did not change. It did not get “better”. Serious Difficulty carried on making things worse for this person.

This story was followed by someone who experienced a kind of spontaneous “cosmic intervention”. Out of the blue, without doing any woo woo work of any kind, the Universe showed up for them and resolved a (relatively small) inconvenience in their life. It involved “premonition” and a one-in-a-zillion coincidence.

So there you have it: someone with a Serious Difficulty follows the woo woo and it fails to deliver.
Someone with a small inconvenience doesn’t follow the woo woo and yet the small inconvenience gets resolved magically.

The woo woo brings fame and riches, except when it doesn’t

On the previous session, Someone Famous in the Woo Woo World came to the online community to teach us and share their story of how the Woo Woo and intuition-based work brought them fame and riches.

Their story ruffled some feathers in the course’s online community because come on. We aren’t woo-woo newbies. Most of us have been practicing for a while, and yet the “Fame and Riches” story hasn’t quite gone according to plan.

Charles Eisenstein’s work could, at a first glance, be described as “woo woo”.
But the thing about Charles is that he’s a really smart cookie. And he’s not afraid of challenge. Or Truth.
He’s not afraid of Big Questions, Big Problems, or the uncertainty that comes from not understanding things fully.

He is, to my knowledge, the first person to invite someone for whom the woo woo “failed” despite all their work, and letting this person’s story be just as valid as that of the person for whom woo woo simply showed up, no work necessary.

Charles isn’t saying “do the woo, it will bring in awesome stuff”. He is saying “I don’t know”.
This is far more challenging. And honest.

And that place of “not knowing”, of being completely and utterly lost, and watching one’s prayers unanswered… that place is sacred too.

You are not less sacred because you are in pain.

The woo woo doesn’t always work

The truth is, most of the people teaching woo do present it as a kind of “science” or “gimmick”.
You pray, you visualise, you ask the Universe… and the Universe delivers.

Admitting that sometimes this process does not “work” would be too scary and vulnerable.
In a way they are no different to the patronising, arrogant doctor who blames the patient for failing to get better, because the prescribed treatment couldn’t possibly be at fault.
And yes, this happens. A LOT.

We are not Masters of the Universe

It’s not just “you” or “me” who “fail” at woo woo

Want to hear Pema Chodron admitting to having panic attacks? Click on “sample”. Minute 4:40.

If Buddhist nun Pema Chodron, who has been meditating and studying “woo” for decades, gets panic attacks, it’s safe to say that woo truly isn’t a “miracle path” towards anything.

And as she says in that audio sample: that’s OK.

The woo woo work won’t always give us fame and riches. It won’t always make Serious Difficulty go away.

Sometimes people pray for mundane things and get them.
Sometimes people pray for life saving solutions and don’t get anything.

We don’t do this woo woo work to get what we want.
We do it to be healthier. To be saner. To make some of the pain go away.
To be at peace more often than not.

To become the fullest expression of “human” that we can possibly be.