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Do We Have An Inner Self that Guides Us?

posted Apr 9, 2012, 8:50 AM by Sheri Perl   [ updated May 5, 2012, 1:37 PM ]

What I’ve learned is that each of us has an inner self that not only guides us, but knows so much more than we consciously do. When you see that you actually have this inside yourself, it is wise to acknowledge it and to make friends with it.


I’ve learned that part of me has always known things that were yet to come; things my conscious mind couldn’t possibly comprehend. It took me a long time to actually realize this.


It’s kind of like having a mystery partner because you aren’t usually aware of it, yet it operates on your behalf.  Some would call this the unconscious mind, others the inner self, and still others, the soul, however I think of it now as my inner ally because I see that it intercedes on my behalf. I would like to share with you a story about the first time I saw this portion of myself in action.


I have never written this story up. I think it’s high time that I did.


This took place in 1973 or 1974. I was driving east with my first husband Lenny and my younger brother, Bob. We were driving in a car which was pulling a horse trailer because we were transporting a horse who, by the way, had a bad leg. We had purchased her from a ranch were we had preciously worked, in California. 


We were on the last leg of what had already been a long ride, hoping to make it to our own ranch in upstate NY at the end of that day.  Transporting horses across the county has a routine that is wise to comply with, for reasons that I will explain. Because it is not likely to find a facility to board your horse in every town, from the time you are ready to quit for the day and the time it takes to find a stall for your horse, you could be driving for another few hours. So we would drive from 4am to 4 pm so that by 6pm we were reasonably assured of finding a place to board our horse.


Now I have never been much good a reading maps and so I never paid much attention to where we were going on any given day. I was along for the ride and that was quite enough for me. Getting going at 4am was more than enough challenge for me although I remember being awestruck by seeing the sunrise as we drove east. But, on this particular morning I had an overwhelming urge to navigate the route! In retrospect I see this as totally out of character and quite ridiculous, since I really was out of my league here, but it was as if I had no choice. I simply insisted on being the navigator. “I’m the navigator, I’m the navigator” was coming out of my mouth, like a child who was playing a game, but I meant it. I grabbed the map and insisted that I take this job into my hands. Lenny was surprised and a little concerned, but I was not taking no for an answer and so, he agreed to go along with it. “Just don’t fuck it up,” he said. “I won’t, “ I answered," with all the bravado in the world.


I looked over the map and picked out the route for the day. I believed that I had put us right back onto route 80, which is what we had been traveling on all along. We kept driving and pushing forward. We didn’t look for a place to spend the night, for we were hoping to make it home to the ranch sometime after midnight. It was about midnight when I started to get concerned about the route, because I had not yet seen any of the towns that I thought we would be passing. All of a sudden it occurred to me that I just might just have fucked it up after all.  At some point I told Lenny that I was concerned because I couldn’t find the towns that I thought would be on our path to which he replied, “Well, I’d be happy to find an open gas station because we seem to be losing generator power….look our lights are going out .” The lights on the dashboard were flickering and then a second later the car started to chug along as if it would stop at any minute.  We just made it to the next exit and would have been stuck there for the rest of the night but the exist turned into a steep hill and we were able to roll down the hill and then we miraculously entered a open gas station which was situated right at the bottom of the hill. What a stroke of luck to find a gas station open after 12 midnight.


The fellow at the gas station looked over our car. “Do you know anywhere that we could board our horse for the night?” we asked, to which we were told that we were in luck because there was a track in the town and that the track was running that night, which meant they would still be open. He juice-up our generator so that we could use the car to get our horse to the track where we were given a stall large enough for her to lie down in, for free! We left her and drove back to the gas station because we still didn’t know what was wrong with the car. The man said we would need to leave it overnight. Our next question was, “Are there any hotels nearby?” to which we were told that there was one hotel in the town and it was across the street, well within walking distance. We grabbed our overnight bags, left the car, and headed for the hotel. When we arrived we were fortunate that they had one vacant room left, with one cot for Bob. Wearily we all fell into deep sleeps.


The next morning we headed back to the gas station. At this point I was very aggravated with myself, unable to understand why I could not read a map accurately.  Lenny wanted to know where the hell we actually were. The man in the gas station pointed us to a map on the wall and lo and behold we had taken an alternate route 80 which went north-east rather than straight east and we were almost at the entrance to route 17, which was perfect for us. Instead of going east and then north, we had gone north-east at the same time. “Not so bad, “ I thought.

Later we paid the gas station our huge bill, collected our horse and headed to our ranch in Chemung New York. At the time I was still admonishing myself for my inability to read a map!


It was only years later that it hit me that the vertical drop, the open gas station, the open track with the big stall, the hotel across the street with the one room and one extra cot, all available after midnight, was not just a matter of good luck! It was at least 20 years later before I realized that it actually was a demonstration of the inner self’s ability to see into the future and to oversee events to ensure a good outcome. I knew that, on a conscious level, I could never have pulled this scenario off if I tried. All of a sudden I had to step back and realize that we do contain wisdom and a vision that our conscious minds cannot even conceive of.


And that was the first time that it occurred to me that I could trust myself and my impulses, that they were on my side and were there to protect me. I also realized that not all knowledge and understanding come from reading what is on a piece of paper and that sometimes the deepest knowledge comes to us in mysterious ways.