How Rituals of Making Wishes Create Attention to Intention

On my actual birthday, I didn’t have a cake or singing or lighted candles. It somehow didn’t feel like my birthday until I made that wish. It got me wondering how and why that tradition even began and why it was so important to me.

Thinking back to the sayings I grew up with like: “It’s 11:11, make a wish!” or “The first star I see tonight, I wish I may, and I wish I might have the wish I wish tonight…” have signified a long tradition of making a wish in a particular moment. These acts are about identifying your heart’s true desire and focusing all your energy there. It is about clearly stating it, asking for it, and putting it out to the universe or to God. We blow on eyelashes and dandelions, pull apart turkey wishbones on Thanksgiving, and like ladybugs landing on us all so that we can make a wish. These are not just American traditions as we have added the European tradition of throwing a coin in a fountain or the Irish tradition of finding a four leaf clover. Other examples around the world are people wishing on lightening in the Philippines, on catching a falling leaf in Japan, or on finding an extra nut inside the shell in Russia.

It begs the question: Why are there so many rituals of making wishes at specific moments of our lives? In my opinion, these are simply concrete reminders in our physical environment to pay attention. Where our attention goes, the energy flows. So if we want to bring good things into our lives, we focus our attention there. And how do we even know what we truly need or want in our lives without a moment of reflection?

I don’t know about you, but I love this idea of building into our lives gentle reminders to pay attention to our own heart’s desires. Allow this moment, reading this article right now, be a reminder for you to ask: What wish do I want to come true in my own life today?

About the Author: Julie Glaser is a healer who creates sacred spaces for people to share, release, and grow. She’s in the habit of being in awe and wonder and writes to share her own experiences and learnings with other inquisitive souls in the process of transforming.

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