| The man­i­fes­ta­tion trap

Be care­ful what you wish for. Man­i­fes­ta­tion can de­liver more than you ex­pect.

Living Now - - Contents - by Julie Ann Cairns


Lots of peo­ple talk about how, when you want to man­i­fest some­thing new in your life, you need to get re­ally spe­cific. Make a list. Write down all the things you re­ally want, in great de­tail and then also say when you want those things to show up in your life. Give the list a dead­line. And then let go, and let God and the uni­verse take care of the rest. Have you ever heard ad­vice like this? Well, I want to save you some time and some tears. Be­cause I think there’s a bit of a trap in that…


Let me ex­plain by telling you a tale of two man­i­fes­ta­tions. True sto­ries. In our first story, we have a won­der­ful woman who wanted to man­i­fest the per­fect hus­band. So she made a very de­tailed list, be­cause that’s what you do, right?

On her list were many things: • She was quite tall, 1.80 me­tres (about 5’11”); so she wanted her dream man to be even taller than that. • She loved to sing and write songs, and

so she wanted some­one who was also a mu­si­cian and could ac­com­pany her and per­form at gigs. • She wanted some­one she could talk with for hours and never get bored of his com­pany. • She wanted some­one who had an even tem­per­a­ment, a kind heart, and was not prone to an­gry out­bursts. • She hated overly ‘ma­cho’ guys; so fi­nally, she put on her list that she wanted a man who was ‘ in touch with his fem­i­nine side’. She made her list, put a time limit on this man show­ing up in her life, set it

‘Some­times man­i­fest­ing means sur­ren­der­ing and trust­ing that you might not yet know what serves your high­est good’.

aside know­ing that the uni­verse would take care of it, and sat back and waited for him to ar­rive. A few weeks later he did. The dream comes true. Or does it? The man who ar­rived was VERY tall, over 2 me­tres (6’7” ac­tu­ally). Al­most too tall…yeah, she re­alised she hadn’t put an up­per limit on the height thing. Oops. But hey, it wasn’t a deal breaker; so on she went down the list to the sec­ond cri­te­rion. He was a gifted gui­tar player and was su­per ex­cited about writ­ing songs with her, and happy to per­form them around town to­gether. Per­fect! Check.

Con­ver­sa­tion flowed be­tween them like a gen­tly flow­ing river. Not hur­ried, not fran­tic or ex­haust­ing. Just deeply re­lax­ing in a very plea­sur­able way, and they were never short of things to talk about. Per­fect. Check.

His tem­per­a­ment was very sweet. He was such a kind soul that she couldn’t imag­ine him ever hurt­ing a flea, let alone her. He treated her so well…in fact he seemed to al­most have a sixth sense about how, as a woman, she wanted to be treated. He made her feel spe­cial, he lis­tened to her, he re­spected her and never talked down to her or tried to con­trol her like those other ‘ma­cho’ guys she’d known be­fore. Per­fect. Check.

He did in­deed seem to un­der­stand and re­spect her fem­i­nin­ity ex­tremely well; so that must mean he was in touch with the fem­i­nine side of his na­ture, right? This was def­i­nitely her dream man. They got mar­ried. For seven years they were very happy. Or so she thought. Then he con­fessed that he’d ac­tu­ally been feel­ing sui­ci­dal. For some time. As he couldn’t bear it any more, he fi­nally de­cided to tell her the truth.


He was feel­ing sui­ci­dal be­cause he was trans­gen­der. He re­ally wanted to tran­si­tion his gen­der, to be­come a woman, and he didn’t know how to tell her. He al­most thought it would be eas­ier to end his life than to burst her bub­ble. He knew he’d lied to her… by omis­sion at least. He’d never told her about his true in­ner feel­ings or just how ‘ in touch’ with his fem­i­nine na­ture he re­ally was. And he knew she’d be dev­as­tated.

She didn’t get an­gry. She ac­tu­ally did her best to sup­port him in his tran­si­tion. She loved him through it un­til he be­came a she. They tried to stay to­gether, but in the end they couldn’t make it work.

Her grief at los­ing her ‘ dream man’ was deep and wide and un­speak­ably painful.

I met her dur­ing the time she was sup­port­ing her hus­band’s gen­der tran­si­tion. One day, when we were hang­ing out, she told me about her ‘ dream man’ man­i­fes­ta­tion list. She said she re­alised that she’d not fully thought through ex­actly what those words ‘ in touch with his fem­i­nine side’ could re­ally mean.

Was the uni­verse play­ing a trick on her? Laugh­ing at her ex­pense?


Think of it from the per­spec­tive of the ge­nie in the bot­tle. That’s some­times how we view the uni­verse when we try to man­i­fest in this way, isn’t it? As the granter of wishes. Not to be­lit­tle my friend’s ex­pe­ri­ence…but doesn’t it re­mind you just a lit­tle bit of a ge­nie in the bot­tle joke? Like this one:

A mar­ried cou­ple in their 60s find a ge­nie in a bot­tle who grants them both a wish. "I want to travel around the world with my dar­ling hus­band", says the wife. And Shazam!… sud­denly 2 tick­ets for a lux­ury cruise mag­i­cally ap­pear in her hand! Her hus­band then says, "Sorry love, my wish is to have a wife 30 years younger than me..."

And Shazam!… sud­denly the hus­band be­comes 92.

Let’s as­sume for a minute that you are an all-see­ing, all-know­ing, higher power that def­i­nitely has the abil­ity to grant wishes. Yet, as that higher power, you also know that the real pur­pose of this realm is more like a class­room where the be­ings in it get the chance to ad­vance and grow spir­i­tu­ally; to par­tic­i­pate in lessons that will al­low a dawn­ing of true wis­dom and in­ner free­dom.

Then, some stu­dent comes along with lim­ited knowl­edge, vi­sion, or in­sight into what’s re­ally go­ing on here and tries to tell you how to do your job. The stu­dent tries to tell you that they know EX­ACTLY what they need, and in fact they have it all writ­ten down on this handy lit­tle list. Could you just grant them their wish-list please?

If you were that higher power, might you com­pas­sion­ately grant those wishes (ex­actly and to the let­ter) in a way that shows them, yes, they CAN ask for what­ever they want…but at the same time teaches them that they don’t nec­es­sar­ily know ex­actly what it is that re­ally serves their high­est good?

Might you want them to learn to TRUST you just a lit­tle? To learn how to sur­ren­der and be guided to their high­est good? To re­alise that it might not look like what they ex­pect?

Hmmm. Food for thought, isn’t it?


So what is the other man­i­fes­ta­tion story I want to tell? It’s my own.

Many years ago I also asked the uni­verse to find me my ideal hus­band. Only I didn’t use a list. I wanted the uni­verse to man­i­fest my ‘ ideal’ spir­i­tual match: a hus­band that would serve my high­est good and spir­i­tual growth, and for whose high­est good and growth I could be of ser­vice as well. No long list of cri­te­ria. That was my only re­quest. I knew that I ac­tu­ally didn’t know what kind of part­ner would serve my high­est good, but I trusted that the power I was ask­ing prob­a­bly did.

Now here’s the in­ter­est­ing thing: the per­son the uni­verse man­i­fested for me was also trans­gen­der (he didn’t keep it a se­cret from me though – I knew from the start). And when he de­cided to tran­si­tion his gen­der, I sup­ported him much like my friend sup­ported her hus­band’s tran­si­tion. On the sur­face our sto­ries looked quite sim­i­lar.

The main dif­fer­ence is this: I have no re­grets. And I don’t carry a deep gap­ing hole of grief about it. I don’t wish it had turned out dif­fer­ently. The jour­ney we went on to­gether as a cou­ple was spir­i­tu­ally and emo­tion­ally chal­leng­ing, for sure. AND it was un­ques­tion­ably the best thing I could have ex­pe­ri­enced for my own growth. I’m a bet­ter per­son for it.

We’re not to­gether as a cou­ple any more but my for­mer hus­band, now she, is still my best friend. We have a daugh­ter to­gether, we co-par­ent, we have a busi­ness to­gether and we still nav­i­gate life to­gether in so many ways. We’re on each other’s team.

I wouldn’t change a thing. She ac­tu­ally was my ‘ ideal’ hus­band. It wasn’t any­thing like what I ex­pected when I asked for that, but I did get ex­actly what I asked for. He (she) was per­fect for me.

And per­haps what my friend got was per­fect for her spir­i­tual growth too. At the very least it taught her the trap of man­i­fes­ta­tion lists. n Con­nect with other read­ers & com­ment on this ar­ti­cle at www.liv­ing­now.com.au Julie Ann Cairns is the au­thor of the top sell­ing Hay House book The Abun­dance Code: How to Bust the 7 Money Myths for a Rich Life Now, and the di­rec­tor and pro­ducer of the doc­u­men­tary of the same name, The Abun­dance Code. Julie Ann’s life mis­sion is to em­power peo­ple to live an abun­dant life free from false be­liefs, to make a shift to the abun­dance mind­set and seek joint so­lu­tions to the most press­ing chal­lenges fac­ing our planet.

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