On the Contemplative Journey V…

Updated: Feb 7

Part Five


As we continue to delve into the contemplative mindscape, one of the ways to access the non-linear realm of synchronicity is through a method I call second intention. When adversity disrupts an orderly process, predictability is suspended requiring entering the unknown terrain of discovery. With the second intention we purposely create uncertainty to develop competence in contemplative discovery. The contemplative approach affords facing adversity with discovery consciousness rather than panic.


The second intention creates uncertainty without adversity by derailing expectations under benign conditions. The exploratory practice requires setting a clear intention, planning steps to reach an objective, and shifting the intention to undefined alternatives. The change of expectations and its mindbody attachments generate uncertainty.


Some examples will clarify the process and its implications:

  1. Plan to go to dinner in an area with several restaurants. Choose one restaurant and set elaborate expectations about dining there. Go to the restaurant, and just before entering, change your mind and walk away without an alternative. Walk around and discover another restaurant.

  2. Go to your bookshelf and pick a book and begin to read any page. Return the book to its place, pick another book, open it to a random page and begin to look for meaning or significance in the text.


These examples, perhaps deceptively mundane, afford uncertainty and detachment from expected goals. Most important however, shifting without expectations to a second intention opens portals of potential synchronicity and meaningful connections, otherwise unobtainable. In some instances it may appear that there’s no significance in the second intention. Give it time to unfold and you will be surprised with the interconnectedness of your experienced world. Like any other learning, this contemplative second intention improves with practice.