The 11:11 Phenomenon: Where Intent Affects Perception
The 11:11 Phenomenon, also known as the 111 phenomenon is something that has interested me for quite some time now. It is easier experienced than explained to someone completely new to the concept. Looked at simply, it is a universal wake-up call that many people go through at different stages of their spiritual development. The phenomenon occurs when an individual seemingly cannot escape the numbers. Wherever you go you are noticing 11:11; on the clock, within numbers or the sum of numbers around you, dates, etc… Contrary to popular belief the 11:11 phenomenon doesn’t even necessarily need to be with those particular numbers.
It is a process of synchronization and patterns. I still remember when I first experienced the time on the clock. I was really young, in elementary school with a digital watch. I don’t even think I could tell time because when I looked down at my watch I said “Wow! My watch goes all the way up to one hundred and eleven!” So, considering I didn’t even know that it was in the thousands, I can safely assume I was pretty young. Whenever I would glance down it seemed to be 11:11, and I noticed it twice a day for a long time, but then it stopped and I began noticing different, yet equally strange things.
Particular letters, words, dates, etc… would show up throughout my day. For awhile I questioned what it meant but then eventually figured it out, or at least I thought I did. Years later I was roaming the Internet and discovered an article on 11:11. Many of the current beliefs are what I’ve already mentioned, but some take it to the point of adding the sums of numbers to find 11:11. For instance, today is 4/7/2009: 2 + 0 + 0 + 9 = 11, 4 + 7 = 11. I can take this as a sign that yes, writing about this today was the right move. Or rather, finishing it, considering I started it last night.
Through the Looking Glass
But before getting more in depth, let’s first look at the steps many associate with 11:11.
Step 1 – You begin to notice the number (or related event) on a clock, within purchases, money, just all over the place. You begin to become more conscious of the numbers as well. After observing it for the first time many people get the “oh, well, that’s cool” reaction because it is seemingly odd to see. At this point 11:11 is basically just a calling card, something to make you scratch your head and keep on moving throughout your day.
Step 2 – This is when it gets a bit more interesting. This is the step in which the numbers appear to a point that basically destroys all probability. Your curiosity peaks as you notice them more and more. Some even turn off clocks or turn them back, and purposely look away to not notice the numbers, or not consciously find the sum of numbers around them. Yet, within all of this conscious effort to not see them, they still appear. This is where many people who do not believe, or choose not to allow some numbers to disrupt their take on reality are forced to turn around and pursue, just for their own peace of mind. Others never leave this step and try to forcibly push 11:11 out of their minds and lives.
Step 3 – This is the peak of the phenomenon. This is where you actually begin noticing the numbers’ significance and many are sent spiraling down the rabbit hole in a fast paced and exciting pursuit of self discovery. Eyes are opened, minds are forever changed and the numbers are no longer just simple reminders, no longer just odd occurrences. They are symbol, they are sign. It’s something that’s hard to grasp at first but it all makes sense in some odd way because in actuality many still feel discontent with their understanding of it, and instead just use it as a means to continue and deepen their pursuits.
Many see the numbers as having similar meanings to what I described before, but also use them as a foundation. They see different sets of numbers as meaning different things entirely. Such as 000, 111, 222, 333, etc… This to me is not significant in a numerological sense, but more so on a personal level. Just like the many systems of divination floating around, Tarot, Runes, etc… It all depends on the individual. Your own view on what you’re seeing and experiencing dictates it’s meaning. It’s entirely subjective.
There are those who even equate the ringing in the ears with this very phenomenon. That ringing being the high pitched hum that is sometimes heard when you are in silence. Assuming what you are hearing is not the electromagnetic discharge from machines or electronics around you, that ringing is seen as being very significant. Some different belief systems even call it the “Song of Angels,” which is wild enough considering the amount of people who feel that 11:11 is a sign that the Angels are among us, guiding us. Is there an actual connection here? Well, who’s to really say, but, why not?
Whatever you perceive 11:11 as being directly, it is safe to say that it is, in short, a phenomenon of noticing events, similarities, questions and answers within the universe we live. However, because so many people talk about this topic as if it were the end all be all in spiritual understanding, I felt the need to write about it myself and possibly shed light onto the situation and certain points that may have not been brought up before.
The power of intention ranges far beyond that of passive spiritual practices, Hermeticism, or Affirmations. Intent literally affects everything you do on a regular basis. Perhaps not at first, but if you do nothing at all to directly pursue your goals, yet hold firm to a particular intent, your actions will begin to slowly reflect that intent. It’s simple psychology, the more you focus on a thought the more you are affected by it. This isn’t AS simple as that, though, because of course you can keep an intention of murdering someone close to heart, and never go through with the deed. Be that as it may, holding such negative intentions can create more negativity, aggression, depression, frustration, and the like, in your life. Especially towards whatever individual you are thinking of. So either way, you are directly affected by the intention.
I bring this up because the most recent article I read on 11:11 was written by Steve Pavlina on his website. It’s a very well written article on the subject, but I kind of felt that some things were left out. This wasn’t surprising to me because honestly, the majority of the individuals I have met who are familiar with the topic see no purpose in going out of their way to elaborate on every feeling or experience they had as it applied to the phenomenon. Unfortunately it just somewhat irritated me to see that of all the articles I’ve read on the matter, no one really felt the need to mention some obvious points that I feel are just too important to mention. That or no one else noticed the same things as me, which is less likely.
As you begin to pursue or notice the many related events associated with 11:11, you will come to a point where you are noticing things in a way that seems to give you “universal feedback” to whatever question, or situation you are facing. I call this simply “seeing the signs.” To just elaborate a bit more, if you for instance were facing an extremely stressful situation whereby you had to choose between two different things of equal significance to you and you couldn’t decide which to decide on, then the 11:11 phenomenon could potentially play a roll in your decision. Steve Pavlina makes note of a similar situation when it came to his actually writing the article based on the subject. He wasn’t fully certain if he should write it or not, but felt the urge to do so. That same day he received various e-mails about the subject, a member on his forums opened a thread about it, he received an offer to write for an 11:11 magazine, etc… This to him made it clear that yes, it was the time to write about it.
Another good example can be taken right out of Hollywood. Jim Carey’s character in Bruce Almighty begged God for a sign of what he should do. Several literal signs began popping up around him. Road signs telling him no, turn away, etc… came up all over the place. Even a truck completely filled with signs pulled in front of him, flashing lights and all, yet he didn’t notice or take in anything that was going on around him. We as the audience notice it because it was made for us to laugh at, but it’s something very real many don’t experience. Seeing a sign vs seeing a sign you WANT to see are two completely different things. This phenomenon is a means of opening up to see things for what they are.
Similarly, I’ve had instances where I wasn’t sure what to do, and different things would occur pointing me in the right direction. Things like a random chain letter, signs on the road, e-mails, all containing the same general subject matter. Or feeling stuck and trapped, only to be contacted by someone giving me an opportunity that would most definitely open doors for me. By opening yourself up go actually noticing these “signs,” the 11:11 phenomenon can start to play a major roll in your life. Here, though, is where it begins to get slightly more complicated.
Perception is a primary component in communication. Not only this though, it is also one of if not the most significant things that dictates how you view the world around you. The questions we ask, the answers we receive, how we feel, even how we think often directly corresponds to how we perceive the things that happen around us. With this, how you understand this phenomenon directly affects what you get out of it. In lou of probably confusing you, leaving you staring at your monitor looking something similar to this cool character face O_o, I’ll take a step back and approach this what a much more easily understood method.
Imagine this, you are walking down the road and for once in your life you can read the street sign on the corner. It says “Stop.” You have been walking down this same street for years and never noticed it, despite the many close encounters with approaching cars, bikers, and the occasional trucker. Never did it occur to you what the sign meant, and even though you experienced close encounters you never really figured that stopping at that corner was what you were SUPPOSED to do, and so you didn’t. The only time you stopped or hesitated was when you noticed the impending doom that awaited if you continued. You were never taught to look both ways, and no one ever taught you the laws of the road.
This seems horrible, doesn’t it? However, it is human nature to allow curiosity to drive us until we hit a wall along the way. We would never know that fire was hot unless someone got burned. Now that we know that, though, we can stop it from happening to us. But we can only do THAT to the level of our understanding of the fire. We may not know that washing your hands with alcohol and then lighting a candle will result in an enormous fireball just because we know fire burns. What you should take from this is the understanding that seeing signs, does not always equate into doing the right thing.
Going back to the story. Now that you can see this sign and understand it’s meaning, you are in a better position to not get hit by a car. This doesn’t mean that it will never happen, it is just something that puts you into a better position. Reading the signs is not the end all be all, and by no means is it the end of self-discovery. It’s simply another beginning. So where does this lead us? Honestly that depends I suppose, but for this discussion it leads us directly to the entire purpose of this article. Where our Intent, affects our Perception.
Intent Affects Perception
On the surface this may seem self explanatory, but in reality it doesn’t seem to be that way. In the book Conversations with God by Neal Donald Walsch, he spoke of a fictional story whereby a particular gentleman walked past a homeless man everyday. As he past him, he noticed that for years he had been sitting on the same chest. Wherever he went, he brought this chest. After years of seeing him the man finally went up to him and asked some questions. I’m not entirely sure of what exactly was asked, but eventually he asked if the homeless man had ever actually looked into this chest he had been lugging around with him all these years. The homeless man looked almost confused, he had never thought of it. When he looked inside there was enough money for him to be richer than he could have ever imagined. It’s been a few years so I’m sure I got that story horribly wrong so please forgive me, but the general points still remain. The moral of the story is that we are what we choose to be. Or rather, we are we we choose not to see. Hang in there with me for a second, it will all make sense, I assure you .
The positions we place ourselves in throughout life are just that, positions we place ourselves in. When it comes to 11:11 we are exposed to a life changing method of seeing signs, a new method of interpreting the world around us to propel ourselves into better situations. This is what it appears to be at first anyway. As we continue down the road of 11:11 we eventually come to a point where we seek out the signs and symbols to answer the questions or solve the problems we are facing in our lives. This is no overnight occurrence, mind you. It’s one that happens after a drastic shift in your mind-state and belief system as it applies to life in general. For some this happens in months, others years, some even decades. This shift means that you are to a point where your understanding and experience of this phenomenon is one that is hard to be expressed into words. It’s significance to you is unrivaled and your interpretations of the signs and symbols is your own. But once we move on and begin asking, and seeking, awaiting response, we sabotage ourselves at the same time.
Once you’ve reached this peak, you probably have already come to a point where you have experienced the power of manifestation. It’s kind of difficult not to, not impossible, just not likely. We’ve already shown how intent affects your life directly, this directly applies to the power of manifestation. As the quote goes, if you believe you can achieve. In our case we are saying we will achieve. Energy goes where attention flows. The more negativity you put out, the more negativity you get back, the same goes for positivity. It’s the same process I discusses when I talk about the power of Affirmations. It’s your desires, your thoughts, ambitions, emotions. They all have a direct say so in the outcome of your life. So when we are dealing with a very real system of guidance, if you will allow me to call it that, and we incorporate our own intents after we feel as though we have a “grasp” on it, things can get a bit complicated.
Taking that story we used previously. Imagine you are in a mood today in which you don’t want to walk to work. You would realllly much rather just stay home today because you have this mild headache and you’ve missed Oprah all week. You’re hoping and praying something happens to keep you home. It doesn’t and you leave the house walking the same way you always walk. When you get to the corner you see the stop sign, you didn’t see it there before, but because you see it and understand what it means you now take this opportunity to stop what you are doing, and go back home. You didn’t take two seconds to think it over, you saw the sign, you had never seen it before, never noticed it nor could you understand it, but now you suddenly can. Why is this bad?
Well both stories have in common the fact that the individual did not understand the sign prior to this experience, the difference lies in their intentions. The first one did not have any particular intention in mind, but was rather struck with an epiphany, if you will. The second individual was hoping, and praying for something to keep them home from work today. With this, the second they observed a sign they figured that, hey, why not, it’s CLEARLY indicating for me to stop so I mustn’t move forward anymore… it might not be in my best interest.
WRONG. Now, I refuse to be the one to dismiss the whole “everything happens for a reason” scenario, however, I also refuse to be the individual to support selective ignorance. This sign very well could be interpreted as a sign to stop the trail of thought the person was on. It was lazy, selfish, and could put them in a position where they could jeopardize their job, thus their family if any applies. Due to their selfish intents, the individual read the sign as they WANTED to. This isn’t getting away from my belief in the signs meaning being up to the individuals perception, it’s more so an exercise in self awareness. Just because you see a sign doesn’t mean that everything is as literal as it seems. Take a step back and observe yourself, your surroundings, and how you are feeling when these signs occur.
I’ve seen so many people take that negative perception on 11:11 and related occurrences. All it does is confuse you in the long run. I do feel that it can be beneficial, because it will cause you to walk down this road of self-discovery and experience first hand the many pitt-falls arrogance can offer. It can be an extremely long journey, I know because I went down that road and experienced much of the same. Choosing to see things as they benefited me, as opposed to taking a more objective perspective and evaluating the entire situation. There is a much better way, and this applies to life in general, not just 11:11.
This post was originally intended to be a short e-mail to someone about the subject. It’s something that bothered me and even though I didn’t go in depth to the extent that I could have, I feel I’ve touched on some important and eye opening issues as it applies to belief, signs, and interpretation. When we are discussing something as mind-boggling as 11:11 or any spiritual subject for that matter I expect there to be a large amount of criticism along with it. I expect many of you reading this to not only disagree with me on the existence of such things, but on my views on life. For those individuals I encourage you to stick with your current understandings and feelings.
We all grow, develop, and change at our own pace. I am fully content with the understanding that my life, all of our lives are completely subjective. Are we living subjective realities with an objective reality? Maybe, maybe not, that’s a topic of discussion for another day. However I can fully attest to the fact that universal signs are all around us, guiding us in the right direction. We are shown things that we may not always like, but sometimes it’s what we need. I believe that you will take from this what you need to take from this, that we see, feel, and believe exactly what we need to at this moment to propel us forward. I can only imagine what we will experience next.