Happy Epiphany

February 1, 2011 in Speeches by Jon Bradbury

by Jon Bradbury

Did you know that January 6th is a time of celebration for many Christians, known as the Feast Of The Epiphany?

Some Western churches commemorate this day as the arrival of the Magi (or three wise men) to the birth place of Jesus as a baby. And a few Eastern churches commemorate this date as the baptism date of Jesus as a man.

These celebrations may include fasting from January 1st to the 5th then feasting from January 6th for the next 8 days. Others may celebrate just one day with plenty of feasting.

In both instances it is a day of remembrance and a reminder of the dictionary definition of “epiphany”, which is:

1: The manifestation of supernatural or divine reality.

2: Any moment of great or sudden revelations or a spirit manifestation.

3: The intuitive perception of-or insight into the essential meaning of something.

In other words, an epiphany is when a SHIFT or CHANGE in increased consciousness and/or awareness occurs.

An epiphany can also be likened to an “aha” moment, or be depicted in a cartoon with the proverbial “light bulb” turning on overhead.

Some of you have seen the bumper sticker that says stuff happens only spelled differently? I would like to restate and correct that by saying to “change happens”.

Could we say that when a change happens we have the opportunity to take advantage of those changes? It is a matter of attitude and perspective, both of which is our choice.

Some of us go into hiding our faces and go away thinking, “I don’t want to change”, “I don’t like changes” or I’m not interested in changing”.

Do you know of someone like I do who is a believer in “Murphy s Law”? That law says “If anything can go wrong, it will” And another extension of that is like, “Waiting for the other shoe to drop” or “Bad things happen in threes”. Or “If it’s not broke, don’t fix it.”

Believers in these superstitions or negative mindsets, which are really not “laws” at all, help us to explain, why many people are afraid or resist change rather than embrace it.

There are many so called Universal Laws or principles in life that we live under that are beyond our control. They work independently of our opinion or superstitions about them and they work even if we don’t understand them or know of their existence.

The one I will key in on here is, “There is only one constant in the universe and that is change.” If something can change, it will, because we live in an eternal universe that is always changing, is always exciting and dynamic and in a scale far bigger than we perceive.

Did you ever notice how some people watch change happen, some people make change happen and others wonder what happened?

I was a truck driver for over thirty years, traveling the highways and byways of our great country.

Epiphanies can be like truck driving. They always give us a bigger picture, a larger perspective and a grander view of the road of life we are traveling, because the scenery is always changing.

Sometimes we truck divers get detoured or scared wondering things like, “Is this trailer going to fit under that bridge?”

Once in a while we get lost and off the beaten path. Also I might mention that fears arise during some of the most horrific weather, but we challenge these fears by keeping on; one mile at a time, one day at a time and one week at a time.

Like shifting gears in a truck or on a spiritual path where everything depends on a shift in consciousness and everyone discovers these truths in one of two ways:

The first way is through epiphanies, those “aha” moments that might include a flash of understanding or deep realization or a revelation or a divine synchronization. Spending a week in silence at a meditation retreat or spending two years at Walden Pond near Concord, Massachusetts can lead to may extraordinary epiphanies.

The second way is through chaos. Examples of this might be the untimely death of a loved one or a near death experience of your own.

In 2005 the very “X” rated movie “Crash” won three Academy awards. This movie included stories and scenes of grotesque violence and absolutely obscene vulgarities about chaos.

Epiphanies can also be likened to a “follow the dots” books you read as a child. Each “aha” dot would be connected to the next and to the next until the bigger picture comes into view. Will you chose to let your epiphanies be stepping stones like in the book or will you chose for them to be stumbling blocks? You get to chose!

As for me, I’m going to follow the dots and “Jon’s” Law and not Murphys. My law says:

If anything can go right, it will and does, and at the most appropriate time.

It will never anyone’s fault because that is just principle in action.

If everything seems to be going wrong, you have obliviously overlooked something.

Things will only get better! As a helpful reminder to myself and to you too about all of this, I think back to 1988 and Micheal Jackson’s famous song “Man In The Mirror. Some of the words I like to remember are:

I’m starting with me

I’m starting with the man in the mirror

I’m asking him to change his ways

I’m asking him to make a change

It’s going to feel real good

If you want to make the world a better place

Take a look at yourself and then make a change

Just lift yourself up you know

You’ve got to stop it yourself

You’ve got to move

You’ve got to stand up and lift yourself

Make that change!

Happy epiphanies on all your roads through life and may you manifest the essential meaning of all you perceive.