My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Notes from the Universe: New Perspectives from an Old Friend (2003) by Mike Dooley is one of those rare books that uplifts and propels you through a new day with such insight that it will leave you with a secret knowledge that, yes, the Universe does give a damn about you.
Instead of me analyzing or interpreting what’s in this little book that can be read in an afternoon or two, or a page a day for 218 days, I will just share with you what resonated with me.
So let’s begin and open ourselves up to a Universe much older and much wiser than we could ever imagine being.
Oh, I hear a knock at the door. Excuse me while I get that.
Why I’ll be… it’s the Universe. Welcome!
“That’s right. This is a dream.
“You’re still asleep. Any minute now, an elephant might appear behind you wearing a pink tutu and tennis shoes. Or maybe the phone will ring, and it’ll be Abraham Lincoln to ask why you’re late for the ball. Or perhaps Oprah is down the hall, live audience in tow, about to introduce you as her new favorite author. Anything can happen in a dream, anything, without regard to the past, without regard to logic, and you never have to figure out the ‘hows.’
“Learn from your dreams, because the stuff of time and space is no different. Forget your past. Pitch the logic. And drop the cursed hows.
“Tallyho, the Universe. PS-Cute whiskers” (p 185).
“Actually, it’s pretty simple. You have one real choice: To do your best, with what you have, from where you are. Everything else is just stalling” (p 80).
“Do you know why you are you?
“Because no one else could be” (p 177).
“Don’t you see these are the days, right now, mid-adventure, that will mean the most to you once your dreams come true? Enjoy” (p 149).
“Shhhhh…The secret to living the life of your dreams is to start living the life of your dreams, at once, to any degree that you possibly can” (p 61).
“Don’t just see the magic, engage it! Challenge it! Dare it! Dream big, with every expectation that your dreams will manifest.
“Demand that they come true! You’re not beholden to life. Life is beholden to you. You are its reason for being. You came first” (p 104).
“It’s as if the Universe works backwards, too. You think of the end result, what you want to happen in your life, and then the Universe works backward, aligning your dreamed-of life with where you are today, stringing together people, places and events, for the ‘impossible’ to become possible. This is how life works. Trust the Universe, it knows how. Don’t tie its hands with logic, fear, or limiting beliefs” (p 157).
“Your supply is the Universe, and its ways are infinite” (p 130).
“Someone once said, ‘No pain, no gain.’
“And so it became their reality. Bummer, huh?” (p 126).
“Never underestimate the Universe” (p 72).
“No matter how great the temptation…(I’m talking about the temptation you’re feeling right this very second), no matter how great… STOP seeing yourself as just human! You are pure energy, with an infinite reach” (p 86).
“Here’s a snippet of advice that come from an as yet undiscovered manuscript buried deep in some Pyrenees mountain cave…
“‘Choose feelings over logic, adventure over perfection, here over there, now over then, and always love, love, love.’
“It also said ‘you rock,’ but you never would have believed that” (p 210).
“If you knew for certain that very, very soon all your dreams would be coming true, what would you do today to prepare the way? (Do it.)
“How might you celebrate? (Do this, too.)
“Who would you tell? (Write them a brief note, now; you don’t have to mail it yet.)
“What thoughts of gratitude would you have? (Express them.)
“And finally, who would you help to ‘achieve,’ as you have achieved? (Help them)” (p 77).
“Whosever may torment you, harass you, confound you, or upset you is a teacher. Not because they’re wise, but because you seek to become so” (p 78).
“Do you know what happens just before something really incredible takes place? Something mind-blowing? Just before a really huge dream comes true?
“Nothing. Nothing happens. At least not in the physical world.
“So if, perchance, right now, it appears that absolutely nothing is happening in your life…consider it a sign” (p 140).
“Of course, ‘Here & Now’ is what really matters, but people will be people, so…given that you’re a FOREVER BEING, I do hope you’re spending as much time looking forward as you are looking back. Because really, forever means you have quite a lot to look forward to” (p 209).
“And on Friday, the Universe said, ‘Yo! Ho! Ho! It’s time to have fun!’
“Whereupon it invented imagination, and there was a huge gasp among the angels. For it was clear that the reins of power in Time and Space had been passed to those so blessed, and that they would be left to discover this for themselves.
“And it was good. Happy Anniversary! PS-And as the angels quickly gathered, there, in line, stood you” (p 206).
“When you understand someone, truly understand someone, no matter who they are, you cannot help but love ‘em, even though you might not always love what they do.
“You knew that. Okay. Just as true is that for anyone you feel less than love for, no matter who they are, it’s because you do not truly understand them.
“(No, you don’t have to like what they do either, nor are you ‘supposed’ to stay with them. You get to decide those things)” (p 129).
“Anger closes the mind and cools the heart at a time when both are needed most” (p 183).
“You must live the truths you discover, you must break your old rules, defy logic, be the change. Dig, write the check, and drink eternally, one little step after another.
“I’m sorry, but there’s no other way. Tallyho, the Universe. PS-Of course, you can ask for help” (p 170).
“No one in your shoes could have done better than you’ve done, with where you began, what you had, and all you’ve been through. No one. Aren’t you glad it wasn’t easier?” (p 151)
“How much longer before you revel in the awareness that you are enough, that you’ve done enough, and that you’re now worthy of your heart’s greatest desires?
“What has to happen for you to give this to yourself?
“No biggie. Just wondering. Take your time” (p 148).
“Oh dear, never ask how. Never think about how; let go of the hows. If you wonder about how, it means your consciousness is not dwelling in spirit, it means you’re trying to manipulate matter, and it means you’re gonna be searching for a long, long, long, long time.
“Steer clear of the hows, dear heart, and simply dwell on the end result. Got it?” (p 118)
“For as long as you are capable of anger, there are lessons to learn” (p 114).
“It all goes by so fast, doesn’t it? One minute you’re here, and the next you’re gone.
“So really, you’ve got nothing to lose, have you? Nothing! You’re gonna make it ‘home’ anyway. You’re gonna be exalted, and it’s gonna be so glorious, happy, and easy.
“Then, after a careful life review, you’re gonna slap your hand on your celestial forehead, jump up and down with uproarious laughter, and say, ‘Dang, my thoughts really did become the things and events of my life. That little book was right. And as exalted as I am here, I was there. And as easy as it is here, so could it have been there! I wanna play again, I wanna go back. This time I promise not to forget. I promise I’ll believe in my dreams and myself. I’ll never let go. I’ll never give up. I’ll keep the faith. Really I will” (p 79).
Happy Holidays and a Happy New Year to all of you…
Keep reading and smiling…
CG FEWSTON has been a Visiting Scholar at the American Academy in Rome (Italy), and a Visiting Fellow at Hong Kong’s CityU. He has a B.A. in English, an M.Ed. in Higher Education Leadership (honors), an M.A. in Literature (honors), and an M.F.A. in Creative Writing & Fiction. He was born in Texas in 1979.
He’s the author of several short stories and novels. His works include A Father’s Son (2005), The New America: A Collection (2007), Vanity of Vanities (2011), A Time to Love in Tehran (2015), and forthcoming: Conquergood & the Center of the Intelligible Mystery of Being; Little Hometown, America: A Look Back; A Time to Forget in East Berlin; and, The Endless Endeavor of Excellence.
You can also follow the author on Facebook @ cg.fewston – where he has 400,000+ followers