The Butterfly Effect is a theory which states that everything in existence is connected and one component cannot help, but affect the entirety of the other components, which comprise the universe.
In layman’s terms; you, or your child, or your dog, or any living creature which does anything, affects everything else in the universe, just like knocking down a set of dominoes. Each living creature in the universe touches so many other lives, that it can’t help but have a profound influence on the rest of existence.
For example, it has been said, that if a butterfly flaps its wings, on one continent, it may cause a hurricane weeks later, on another.
The concept is that even the most subtle and unobtrusive change affects other things, which build upon each other, and may eventually result in a massive change, which for some, would be quite unexpected.
You may feel that the concept is philosophical hogwash, or the equivalent of spiritual fertilizer, but one can follow along with a rational perception of this theory, step by step and it makes sense.
For example, a man stubs his toe and it makes him late for work. Because of his sore toe, he limped around and it took him longer to get ready. He didn’t have time to shave, so he brought his electric shaver and decided to shave in the car. Because he was shaving in the car and a squirrel decided to chase a nut across the road, he swerved and killed a young girl named Jane, who was trying to cross the street.
The accident obviously now affects Jane, the driver, but also Jane’s family, which lost a dear loved one. However, this also affects relatives of the two immediate families and friends of those relatives. It affects every life that Jane’s life would’ve touched in the future, but no longer will. It affects every life that the driver’s will interact with, because the tragedy is sure to have an effect on him, which will make him a different person; thereby altering his future interactions.
Also, think of the cumulative effect the accident would have on the lives of so many people, the time spent consoling one another and planning the funeral, the mental state and effect on future decision making. It even affects their world view and how they live their lives.
The effect carries through the immediate families to the relatives and then to the relatives of the relatives and to the friends of the relatives and then to their friends and the relatives of those friends. It carries through to business interactions and even people you may, or may not bump into on the street. In most cases, it’s a never ending ripple effect, moving outward.
Remember, this fictional scenario started with a simple stubbed toe. So you can see how something, which really seems utterly insignificant, can really have a profound effect on the world.
Hopefully you can imagine how the spread of changes is like pouring a large bag of marbles on the floor and watching them roll off in all directions.
Imagine a drop of water falling from the water faucet, into a full sink, where it dimples the water and makes a ripple that expands outward, riding from one end of the sink to the other. All that from one little drop of water.
We are each little drops of water, in our own way. The human body, for example, is 98% water. The fact that our actions ripple across a network of water-based life-forms and the effect expands outward is more fitting than it may even initially seem.
Three things people may not realize immediately about The Butterfly Effect are…
1. We mentioned that any living creature is a part of the network involved in The Butterfly Effect, but the same could also be said for inanimate objects.
Things also have an effect on the pattern and framework of the universe.
Think about it. When your car dies and it makes you late for work, how many dominoes fall and how many things will change.
What happens if you need to make an important call, but your cell phone doesn’t work, or something even more important, like your birth control, fails?
Some people believe that objects have spiritual energy, or a positive or negative karmic charge. One can reflect on the fact that things often seem to have a life of their own and often break at the worst moment possible. Whether you agree, or think the idea is absurd, it can be fun food for thought.
One gentleman had a temperamental VCR, which stopped working. When the VCR stopped working, he took it to a repair shop, but he speculated that the vibrations from the car somehow fixed the VCR by jostling a loose connection back into place, since the VCR worked fine once he got it to the repair shop.
This happened a couple times and since the ride to the repair shop seemed inconvenient and it was embarrassing for the man to claim the VCR had a serious problem, when the repairman kept getting the impression that nothing was actually wrong with it, the man actually joked that the VCR had a life of its own.
Taking his own musing thought to heart, the man took the VCR on a drive the next time it stopped working. As though the VCR simply wanted to get out and do something engaging. Once again, that seemed to fix the problem.
As far as mankind knows, VCR’s and rocks don’t have thoughts, or feelings, or karma charges, but one thing is definite and that is that they do have a considerable effect on The Butterfly Effect, just like animals and people.
If a tire blows out, during an early morning commute to work, it changes everything, not just for that person, but for all the people that the will or won’t interact with during that day.
If a house burns down, it has a profound effect on the neighborhood and the people in the area, spreading out to have a small effect on millions of lives, which in turn spreads to billions. Everything changes.
2. You cannot escape The Butterfly Effect, no matter how hard you try. Anything you do, even if it seems like you’re not doing anything, has a profound effect on the universe. That is because, you always could be doing something and what you could be doing, but aren’t, has as much of an effect on things as what you are doing at any given time.
For example; you could say, “I don’t want to be a part of this Butterfly Effect! I’m bored and depressed and dissatisfied with my life. I don’t want the responsibility of influencing and effecting things around me and throughout the universe. I’m just going to lock myself in my house and watch TV, eat Hot Pockets and play video games.”
If he does this, this young man may think he has effectively removed himself from The Butterfly Effect, but it doesn’t work that way. On the surface it seems that his lack of action has removed him from the outside world and thereby separated him from The Butterfly Effect, but actually, his lack of action is still an action, in and of itself.
His frequent choices, not to do anything more productive, or substantial, are still choices he is making and by choosing not to be productive, these choices may be having an even greater effect on the universe, than if he were trying to be a fully functional member of society.
Just consider, if he left his house and was living a fuller, more connected life, he might’ve been someone’s best friend and that might’ve stopped them from committing suicide. He might’ve bumped into someone in a crowd, which delayed them a quarter-second, which kept them from being struck and killed by a car later that day.
This boy, who stays home in his house alone, thinking he has no effect on anything, could’ve become the next president of The United States and affected billions of people. He could’ve changed laws, righted wrongs and improved human existence.
So you see, what you don’t do is always just as important as what you do, because potential is always there and acts on the universe in a positive or negative way, whether we like it or not.
There is no denying your effect on the universe. Everything you do alters the tapestry of existence.
3. You can learn how to use The Butterfly Effect to benefit you in your life and to make the world a better place. How? Simple.
Think about a business-woman at a job interview. During the interview, she’s on her best behavior; punctual, well-spoken, inquisitive, professional, friendly, organized, etc. When the woman leaves the job interview and goes home to her husband, she is moody, irritable, standoffish and cold. She puts on a happy face and is friendly, when she needs to be. When she doesn’t think the spotlight is on her, she lets her guard down and often she’s not the best person she could be.
Now, if The Butterfly Effect is real and everything you do is always affecting the universe and everything around you, then you can’t just pretend to be the person you know you should be. You need to figure out who you think you should be and then become that person, because these “off camera” periods when you misbehave and/or, are not who you know you want to be, they are still a part of your interview. You are still affecting everything around you. You are still making the universe better or worse. You are still striving to obtain everything you want from life, or failing.
FIVE WAYS TO HARNESS THE BUTTERFLY EFFECT
The Butterfly Effect is clearly a very interesting concept, but did you know that it could be more than a philosophical distraction?
Did you know The Butterfly Effect could become a tool to improve your life?
Sure! Why not?
Here are 10 ways you can let The Butterfly Effect improve your climate…
5. Understand that faking it only fakes yourself
When someone tries to be someone they’re not, they put on one face for the public and keep their real face hidden, but when you consider that every decision you make, or don’t make is knocking down dominoes throughout existence, you can imagine just how difficult it is to live a lie.
You’re sending out negative signals that change our entire universe and you hope that no one will notice?
Sure the changes are often subtle, but eventually the ripples of a lie are almost guaranteed to reach a beach where someone you know is wading.
4. Expand your circle of familiars
Realize that The Butterfly Effect disseminates throughout the universe, so if you want to make big changes to the universe, the more people you can gather around you to hear your call and receive your influence, the faster and easier it will manifest these changes in the practical universe.
Some say, “It’s not what you know, but who you know.” That’s not true, but “who you know,” certainly does help and circles of influence are no laughing matter.
If you want to change the world a good way, get your own pack of dominoes and then set them up, so that they spill into other people’s games.
3. Realize you cannot be a passive participant
Realize that you cannot “opt out” of our reality. No matter what you choose, a choice will be made and you will have profoundly affected the universe.
Even if you decide not to participate, by killing yourself, your absence would send a huge ripple through existence. You would be eliminating all the possibilities of all the things you might’ve done, all the lives you might’ve influenced, all the situations your presence might’ve altered.
It can’t be helped. You must make choices and participate. The only question is, will you choose to affect the world in a negative manner, or a positive one?
2. Understand the importance of your actions
Consider that your slightest action forever changes the planet. Consider that if the Earth is different, its effect on the universe will change, ever so slightly. And if our universe changes, so might our galaxy and so on.
The Butterfly Effect spreads its wings perpetually, so understand that virtually anything is possible. Figure out what you want and don’t feel small. Feel empowered. Your slightest action changes the universe forever.
Now think of what you could do, if you set your mind to it.
1. Do well
Flap your wings! Make the world a better place.
If you want to make big changes, then be a raindrop that makes waves. It can happen.
The Butterfly Effect is your call to action.
If you have told yourself that “what I think doesn’t matter, what I feel doesn’t matter, one vote doesn’t matter,” you need to remind yourself that Rome wasn’t built in a day and every little bit helps.
Most things happen in increments, step by step. There’s a cumulative effect and components are always acting on other components.
The Butterfly Effect is one of the most important reasons to believe that a single life can have a profound impact on the world. Of course, this has already been proven by many famous and well-lauded people, who have changed the world with their bravery, drive and vision; but for many who will never obtain fame, or greatness, or any form of public notoriety, The Butterfly Effect should speak to you, because in your own way, you are just as important and just as influential in setting the table for the universe as those of far higher public stature. Realize that your choices remain vital.
Life is like a slot machine. When each individual person acts it’s like a tug on the lever of a one armed bandit.
The little wheel spins around and shows you pictures with each tug, but not much really happens. But inside the machine, there are changes taking place. Each pull brings the mechanism one step closer to paying off.
Eventually, once enough people have pulled on that lever, the payoff will come. It may take time. It may take a lot of people who take action, but the time will come eventually.
And the amazing thing is, we never know who that one person will be. Who will hit the jackpot? Who will be that extra person who makes it all happen?
It could be Martin Luther King, Jr. or Malcolm X, Mahatma Ghandi or Martin Luther, or it could be your neighbor from across the street, or the pizza delivery boy, or the girl at the perfume stand, or even, you.
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