This is one of my favorite quotes. Einstein was referring to technological advancement, and the idea that if we believed the Universe was friendly, we would develop technology in order to understand it more deeply and to help our fellow man, but if we believed the Universe was hostile, we would develop technology designed to destroy our perceived enemies.
This question was brought home to me recently by, of all things, a flat tire. I was about to go run some errands when I noticed my car had a flat, sitting right in my own driveway. Since I wasn’t in a hurry I figured, no problem! I’ll just change it myself. I got out the jack and the spare, pried off the hubcap and saw to my dismay that one of the lugnuts had a weird lock on it. I had never seen such a thing, but after a little Googling I learned that it was supposedly a theft deterrent and that I should have a little key tool for it somewhere. I searched every nook and cranny of my car, but no key. (I probably came across it one day and thought, what the hell is this thing? and tossed it. That sounds like me.)
I thought, no problem! I’ll just call Triple A. Of course, the first thing they asked me was, Do you have the lugnut key? Um, no. Well, we’ll have to tow it.
Okay, now this was getting to be a problem. I was getting annoyed at this stupid, completely unnecessary locking lugnut that was suddenly complicating my life. I sure didn’t ever want to have to deal with this again. The solution was clear: I called the auto shop and told them to take them all off.
My neighbor wandered over, and when I explained what was going on and that I was having the locking nuts removed, she said, “Oh, you don’t want to do that! It’s an invitation to thieves! They’ll strip the wheels off your car.” This same neighbor, when I mentioned that I was getting a new front door, said, “Oh good! I was worried about your flimsy wood door. Somebody could kick it right in!”
She clearly doesn’t live in a friendly Universe. Most people don’t. (A quick perusal of your Facebook feed, or even a casual conversation with the people in the grocery store line will confirm that.)
But I do. In my world, the vast majority of people are good. The Universe is friendly. I don’t lie awake at night worrying about wheel thieves and door-kickers. This is not to say that I turn a blind eye to the evils, injustices, and natural disasters of the world. As any soul who has strapped in for a ride on this planet knows, shit happens. I simply choose not to dwell on it. I know that whatever I focus on grows, whatever I believe is reflected, and whatever I fear is attracted. I choose to live in the light, keep my vibration high, and trust that the Universe is on my side and wants the best for all of us.
There’s a great Muslim proverb: Trust in Allah, but tie your camel. So yes, I tie my camel. I take reasonable safety precautions, I lock my doors, I have health insurance. But then I let go and trust. I expect things to go well. I have faith in the inherent goodness and benevolence of the Universe, and that faith is reflected in my reality.
So that’s my question for you today, dear readers: How about you? Do you live in a friendly Universe?