Tool For Tuesday: A Rude Awakening Precedes A Spiritual Awakening

It all happens for a reason. I believe this to be true, especially today when I made an embarrassing mistake.


I was supposed to take part in a reading at the Embassy of the Netherlands with seven other writers for Shelley Goldman’s terrific new anthology, Love in Israel . I knocked on the door, a few minutes late, and announced proudly, “I’m here for the reading!”


A flustered-looking woman hemmed and hawed. “I’m sorry,” she said. “But it’s tomorrow!”


I got my days and dates mixed up! I was a day early!  But here’s the thing:


Just like difficulties precede enlightenment, rude awakenings precedes spiritual awakenings.


The insights that make you burn inside, the suggestions of a trusted friend, the comments of a stranger: if you feel unnerved, insulted, exposed—that means you’re headed for some personal growth.


Only if you keep your heart and mind open. Allow yourself to be vulnerable. Take off all those layers of protection and reveal your true self.


You’re feeling raw and plucked because sometimes the only way to get you to change is to force it.


A rude awakening can be the start-up signal that you’re in for some major revisions.


Here’s what I learned:


I will not assume I know.


Check my dates twice.


I won’t count on my GPS.


I won’t let the automatic pilot run my life.


So, I missed the reading but got to talk to the flustered woman at the door who turned out to be the Ambassador’s spouse and the event’s host who wouldn’t have had time for me at the event. Another writer was asked to come to read in my place.


There is a reason I went yesterday and not today, even if I’m not sure what the reason was. Or maybe I figure it out sideways: because there was obviously else I was meant to do.


Oh yeah, write this very post.


Tool for Tuesday: Rude awakenings bring on the spiritual ones. (If you’re open to hearing the message.)



About dianabletter

Diana Bletter is the author of several books, including The Invisible Thread: A Portrait of Jewish American Women (with photographs by Lori Grinker), shortlisted for a National Jewish Book Award. Her novel, A Remarkable Kindness, (HarperCollins) was published in 2015. She is the First Prize Winner of Moment Magazine's 2019 Fiction Contest. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, tabletmag, Glamour, The Forward, The North American Review, Times of Israel, and is a reporter for Israel21C, and many other publications. She is author of Big Up Yourself: It's About Time You Like Being You and The Mom Who Took off On Her Motorcycle, a memoir of her 10,000-mile motorcycle trip to Alaska and back to New York. She lives in a small beach village in Western Galilee, Israel, with her husband and family. She is a member of the local hevra kadisha, the burial circle, and a Muslim-Jewish-Christian-Druze women's group in the nearby town of Akko. And, she likes snowboarding and climbing trees.
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12 Responses to Tool For Tuesday: A Rude Awakening Precedes A Spiritual Awakening

  1. Donna Farrer says:

    What a great post! I was in a “rude awakenening” moment recently, I was given a book. That wasn’t the awakening part though, but in reading it prompted it. It was Ronald Coopers How to Win in Life in a Greater Way, now I am not one for real motivational books, but this one really got me going in that direction. is the book site, worth a look if you want some life changing, yet at times “Rude Awakening” moments to get you back on track! Once again, great post!

  2. On the bright side, Diana, my dad always used to say it was better to be a day early than a day late. He also said things like, “A day late and a dollar short,” so go figure.
    You turned the oversight into an overall good experience, and that is a valuable ability.
    On Sunday morning–“spring forward”–we changed all the clocks and watches, but I didn’t change the clock in my car! On Monday I was an hour late for a doctor appointment! Luckily, he was running behind and I still had to wait 10 minutes before my name was called!

    • dianabletter says:

      Ha, ha! Marylin, that’s a funny story about your almost missing your doctor’s appointment. And Tracy is right, your father was a smart man!

  3. Marylin has a smart dad too. Better to be early than late. And you did get a post out of it. And you never know what else may come of it. 🙂

  4. Many things are happening now that I can’t really follow with my pea-brain 😉 and I find that the more I rely on something being ‘right’ just by the fact that it IS, I relax and that is most important for me. I enjoyed reading your post! cheers! ♥ tomas ☼

  5. …and thanks for the link to the Spiritual Awakening post on my Heartflow! ♥

  6. Sharon says:

    Good reminder for each of us to try to put a positive spin on what we consider to be our messing up/disappointments etc. Plus sometimes we think that these things only happen to us but we are all only human and no one is perfect.

  7. cpanel vps says:

    Keep on writing, great job!|

    • dianabletter says:

      Thank you for stopping by to read my blog! I will think about the part 2 for the other post on “if it’s hysterical, it’s historical.” Thanks!

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