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May 12th, 2008

Omens and Earthquakes in China

Earlier today I received a DVD in the mail. It contained all my Psycho-Cyb talks – in Chinese – to the students at the second Matt Furey Hope School my wife and I opened in China.

I popped it in the computer to watch. While doing so I didn’t just think about these children. I also thought about the 900 kids who are trapped inside the rubble after a 7.9 earthquake shook China so hard it could be felt all the way to Thailand, Vietnam and Pakistan.

Now that’s some earthquake.

I’ve made a few calls and sent several emails to friends and family to make sure everyone is alright – and if not – have pledged my support to help in any way I can.

Steve, a friend living with his family in Xian – had planned a trip to Holland this weekend but is staying home as his two children need a little reassurance. Steve said events like this help him to re-examine his priorities. How true.

Historically, China is not a country that suffers very many deadly earthquakes – but when they come – if they are BIG – it is customary to look for the meaning.

And so the question: Is today’s earthquake an omen – or a meaningless random event.

Well, let’s look at some Chinese history.

On July 28, 1976 – 240,000 people died in the Tangshan earthquake. Many viewed this as a harbinger for Chairman Mao – who died 44 days later – on 9.9.1976.

When it comes to numbers, there are two that Chinese are leery of – and for good reason. Those numbers are ’4′ and ’9.’

4 is often thought of as the number of death. 9 is seen as a number of life (picture an unborn baby – almost looks like a 9). On the other hand, 9 is also thought of as a number that completes a cycle. Hence, Mao’s death on 9.9.1976 completed a MAJOR cycle. Moreover, isn’t it odd that he died 44 days later (if you count the day of the earthquake and the day he died).

Here’s something else that is interesting:

If the numbers 4 and 9 repeat – it may spell double doom. If you’re 44 years old, for example, astute Chinese would advise you to leap a year ahead and say you’re 45.

After childhood, it is customary to never have an age that ends in ’9.’ You’re never 49 – you’re 50.

You’re never 59 – you’re 60 – and so on.

If this sounds a bit odd – let me give you some “twilight zone” stuff to consider.

1. Martin Luther King, Jr. – assassinated on 4.4.1968.

2. Henry Aaron – number 44 – received more death threats en route to breaking Babe Ruth’s record than all other baseball players in history combined. Hit number 715 on 4.8.1974 in the 4th inning. Thank God he survived.

3. Chairman Mao – died on 9.9.1976 – in this instance view ’9′ as the number of completion.

4. Uh-oh – this year in the U.S. we’re electing our 44th president. Wouldn’t want to be THAT person – let me tell you. Visualize the very best. Pray for the best. But don’t be surprised if all hell breaks loose.

5. In China – April 4 is a day to remember the dearly departed

6. The 2008 Olympics open this year on 08.08.08 at 8:08:08 PM. In China an ’8′ is the most fortunate number of all. So it is not mere coincidence that they are starting the opening ceremonies with a string of 8′s.

Okay, what does all this mean. And does today’s earthquake in China contain a message for us.

I believe everything in life has a meaning – if you take the time to look. At the same time, I also believe what you picture in your mind has MORE to do with the results you and others experience in life than any other factor – and so, that is where the majority of your focus must go.

Begin and end with the elements you can control – and you may be amazed with the wonders you work in this world.

That’s the meaning of today’s earthquake. Don’t sit around and endlessly speculate on fate. Some of that is fine – but the real key to making the world a better place will be found in thinking the best and DOING the best.

That’s how all of us can truly make a difference.

Matt Furey

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