Keeping Potential Alive

The universe is forced to respect your boundaries. Just as no literal vision of beauty can affect a blind cave fish and no sweetness of perfume entices a snail, any aspect of life that lies outside your boundaries will not hold meaning for you.

A mind closed off to love, for example, will look out on a loveless world and be immune to any evidence of love, while an open mind will look out on that same world and find infinite expressions of love.

If our boundaries told the whole story, evolution could never break through them. This is where quantum leaps come in. Every observer creates a version of reality that is bound up in certain meanings and energies. As long as those meanings seem valid, the energies hold the picture together.

But when the observer wants to see something new, meaning collapses, energies combine in a new way, and the world takes a quantum leap. The leap occurs on the visible plane when the switch is “on,” but it was prepared in the invisible domain when the switch is “off.”

For example, our ability to read came into being when prehistoric man developed a cerebral cortex, yet no one in the prehistoric world needed to read. If evolution is as random as many geneticists argue it is, the ability to read should have disappeared a million years ago, since its usefulness for survival was zero.

But this trait survived for the creature who was emerging. Consciousness knows what is to come, and it builds into every particle of creation the potential not just for one unfolding future but for any future.

Nature doesn’t have to predict what is going to happen on every level. It just opens avenues of growth, and then a given creature – in this case us – makes the leap when the time feels right. As long as potential is alive, the future can evolve by choice.

Adapted from The Book of Secrets, by Deepak Chopra (Harmony Books, 2004).


amber c.
amber c6 years ago


myra d.
myra d6 years ago

thank you for sharing your profound knowledge of so many things on so many levels.

Becky Y.
Rebecca Y6 years ago

When I think of keeping potential alive, I think of the kids in a low income school...a great many lived in their parents car or in a place they were always afraid of getting evicted. What could I do to help them reach their potential. A friend of mine invited me to an acapella concert; he was a talent agent and knew all the singers. After the concert one of the groups had a picture of them and I asked if they would sign it and say something to my kids about staying in school and graduating. Every single member of that group put the most wonderful messages to my kids. I copied the photo and gave each child a copy. They were thrilled. Then another idea came to me, I wrote to Shaquil O'Neil and told him about my group of kids. He wrote back and sent me a wonderful packet of sports related items of his and told me to have each child write to him and he would send each of them a packet. It was so much fun watching each kid write those letters then wait to get the packet and then see their faces as they received the packets.....the message from everyone was stay in school and graduate. My message was, everyone can't be an "A" student but each person can do the best they can do and become someone they can be proud of in their Shaquil, like those singers...I pray those kids are doing good, that they are reaching their full potential despite their circumstances. I know I did my best for them and they knew I cared...that's all anyone can do...their best.

heather g.
heather g6 years ago

Thanks for that, Deepak - your knowledge is also beautifully conveyed .................

Tim Cheung
Tim C6 years ago


Melinda K.
Past Member 6 years ago

I liked this thanks

Parvez Zuberi
Parvez Zuberi6 years ago

Thanks for an interesting article

Geetha Subramaniam

Thanks for posting.

Charles G.
Wilde Thange6 years ago

Man has always been reading nature and other humans.

Dot Alexander
Dot A6 years ago

@Max Overton says
Sep 14, 2011 3:35 PM
What's truly awe-inspiring is Deepak's ability to misunderstand evolution and physics.

Well, Max, apparently Deepak isn't your cup of intellectual tea. You write for a different audience, and that's all well and good. However, we each experience our own sense of things by different interpretations of the English language, or any other, for that matter. (even the word RED, is not the same to any two individuals) If you truly have found no value in Deepak's work, why do you take the time to read hime and then berate him? Could there still something of interest you read here, or do you just want the readers to believe as you do?

You are intelligent as well, it's just that intelligence cannot be put into a neat little box that fits all sizes,.... A rocket scientist may not be impressed with the works of Kant, yet, that does not mean that one or the other has a misunderstanding of what is meaningful and of value in their own 'intelligent' minds. ~

just a thought,....