Letter from the Editor: Leap to Wholeness
Four years ago, one of my very first tasks as a new Acquisitions Editor at North Atlantic Books was to review a proposal about physics and synchronicity by Sky Nelson-Issacs. I liked it, but we make decisions around acquisitions collectively, and as a group we decided against publishing it. We politely passed and I didn’t think much else about it.
Six months later I was attending the Science and Nonduality conference in San Jose, listening to Charles Eisenstein talk. I had been working with Charles for a couple of months on Climate—A New Story, but we hadn’t met face to face yet. After his talk, I waited in a line to introduce myself. As I stood there I absently looked at the name badge of the person standing next to me: Sky Nelson-Isaacs. I recognized Sky’s name immediately, so I’m pretty sure I introduced myself with something like “Hi, you don’t know me, but I rejected your proposal!”
But Sky was probably not surprised by the synchronicity of our meeting. His book, Living in Flow, which we did end up publishing in 2019 after some key revisions, was all about that. Sky and I talked that day, and many more days, about the ideas he explores with physics, synchronicity, filters, and our inherent wholeness as human beings.
In Living in Flow, Sky explains how a synchronicity is neither positive nor negative. It’s simply the universe being responsive. In his new book, Leap to Wholeness, he backs up these ideas with his research in physics—concrete research that was recently published in the scientific journal Quantum Reports. He starts with rainbows, holograms, and filmstrips to give us a sense of the wholeness of light and filters. Once we understand the physics, he explains how this relates to us and our interpersonal relationships—and how we might not be seeing the wholeness, like the wholeness of light, that is our actuality.
Sky shows us that it’s our filters that make us think the response from the universe is positive or negative, good or bad. Sometimes that change of filter can completely alter an experience. I found this myself recently. This last holiday season one of my packages was misdelivered to my old address. It’s a common enough occurrence, and my attitude was immediately grumpy about it. But rather than going down the negative path that my mind was gleefully headed towards, I paused. I took a minute to think about what it would change about my day. I would have to put on real clothes—gasp!—and leave my house for the second time that day. But otherwise it wasn’t a huge hardship. I made a plan to pick it up and tried not to be irritated by the change to my day.
Then my old neighbor explained that there were also some boxes that had somehow been left behind when I moved out. She said they hadn’t wanted to throw them away because they looked important. Now I was more curious than irritated. It had been months since I had moved, and I couldn’t think of anything I was missing.
I went to pick up the boxes with a hopeful, open mind. A little while later, I returned home with my small misdelivered box—and three large boxes that included family photos, artwork my kids had made when they were 2 and 3 years old, and their tiny baby handprints encased in plaster. I cried because I was so thankful that she hadn’t thrown these things away, and I felt so lucky that my package was misdelivered so she had a reason to contact me. I couldn’t believe that I had originally been grumpy about the package. My filter on the situation started out as one of irritation…and now it was completely different. My package was misdelivered. It could be good or bad, but really that designation is my filter over the situation. Of course, that makes it sound like everything really does turn out positively in the end or that it’s easy to just change your filter. I’m not trying to say that—and neither is Sky. But when we acknowledge we are seeing our lives through a filter, we remember that we are part of the physical material world—like light and its inherent wholeness.
—Alison Knowles, Associate Director of Acquisitions