Posts tagged ‘magic’

June 24, 2016

Follow your bliss, witness magic

Thought of the moment, courtesy of American writer and mythologist Joseph Campbell:

Follow your bliss, and doors will open where there are no doors.

Magic does exist, if you listen to your heart and follow where it leads. . . .

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March 27, 2015

The genie in the lamp is . . .

In this life, there is a genie in the lamp: YOU.

Make your own magic.

❤

March 13, 2014

Lessons from a Russian doctor: Let language carry you

Good writing requires a special spark. That’s why I love the following passage from Boris Pasternak’s novel Doctor Zhivago; here, Pasternak describes the elusive flame of artistic inspiration, in which words take on a life of their own, language flexes its formidable muscle, and the (excited) author merely hangs on for the ride.

(Context: Yuri Zhivago, the novel’s protagonist, is working to record the poems that have grown within him for years.) 

After two or three stanzas and several images by which [Yuri] himself was struck, his words took possession of him and he felt the approach of what is called inspiration. At such moments the relation of the forces that determine artistic creation is, as it were, reversed. The dominant thing is no longer the state of mind the artist seeks to express but the language in which he wants to express it. Language, the home and receptacle of beauty and meaning, itself begins to think and speak for man and turns wholly into music, not in terms of sonority but in terms of the impetuousness and power of its inward flow. Then, like the current of a mighty river polishing stones and turning wheels by its very movement, the flow of speech creates in passing, by virtue of its own laws, meter and rhythm and countless other relationships, which are even more important, but which are as yet unexplored, insufficiently recognized, and unnamed.

This is a beautiful description of the magic of artistic creation, and if you are a writer or an artist of any kind, I think you’ll understand what Pasternak is saying. In other words: sometimes the creative energy just flows from within you. You enter “the zone,” and everything inside and outside of you seems to move in synch, to hum along in easy, seamless harmony, allowing you to produce a beautiful piece of art or composition, the final product simply flowing out of you with nary a thought or concern on your part. It’s an extraordinary feeling, when you experience it, but such moments are rare — which is why we artists tend to run with that special momentum when it hits us!

I wish you such inspired artistic energy in whatever field of creation you pursue.

January 1, 2014

January challenge: Become a wild child!

This month’s challenge is inspired by the lyrics from the song “Wild Child” by Enya. Your goal is to start the year off by trying to be completely present to as many of the events, experiences and sensations swirling around you as possible. Take an hour, a morning or a day — or several days! — and give in to the magic of it all. Big or small, loud or quiet, every moment has much to offer, if you give yourself over to it. Even the rain can glimmer with beauty and joy; just look with an open heart.

Best wishes for 2014!

Ever close your eyes?
Ever stop and listen?
Ever feel alive?
And you’ve nothing missing
You don’t need a reason
Let the day go on and on.

Let the rain fall down
Everywhere around you
Give into it now
Let the day surround you
You don’t need a reason
Let the rain go on and on. . . .

Only take the time
From the helter-skelter
Every day you find
Everything’s in kilter
You don’t need a reason
Let the day go on and on.

Every summer sun
Every winter evening
Every spring to come
Every autumn leaving
You don’t need a reason
Let it all go on and on.

What a day, what a day, to take to
What a way, what a way, to make it through
What a day, what a day, to take to
A wild child.

December 20, 2013

Dabble in invisible reality

I like this quote from the 2004 film The Polar Express:

Seeing is believing, but sometimes the most real things in the world are the things we can’t see.

Like love, joy, the ties of friendship, the magic of a moment. And more.

April 5, 2013

Book Recommendation – “The Raven’s Gift” by Jon Turk

The Raven’s Gift chronicles adventurer Jon Turk‘s journey to healing and self-awareness over six years of travel on the Siberian tundra and a series of encounters with a “magic” that permeates the natural world and connects it (and us) to the spiritual realm.  Insightful and incredibly well written, Turk’s story is a reminder of both life’s fragility and its resilience.  His experiences suggest that moments of awareness, connectedness and self-understanding are out there waiting for us, if only we trust enough to switch off our rational minds and just believe.  “It’s not how we seek self-awareness,” writes Turk, ” it’s whether we take the time and energy to make the journey [italics added].”  An excellent read.

 

Image of the cover of the book "The Raven's Gift: A Scientist, a Shaman, and Their Remarkable Journey Through the Siberian Wilderness" by Jon Turk

“The Raven’s Gift: A Scientist, a Shaman, and Their Remarkable Journey Through the Siberian Wilderness” by Jon Turk

January 20, 2013

Make your own magic? Yes, you can.

A poem from children’s author Shel Silverstein:

Sandra’s seen a leprechaun,
Eddie touched a troll,
Laurie danced with witches once,
Charlie found some goblins’ gold.
Donald heard a mermaid sing,
Susy spied an elf,
But all the magic I have known
I’ve had to make myself.

Too often we go through life waiting for something amazing to happen to us, when really we have the power and the ability to create those magical opportunities for ourselves.  Yes, “making magic” will involve taking risks, facing fears, stepping out of your comfort zone, but magic won’t happen — can’t happen — unless you are brave enough to give yourself to the moment and see where the “spell” you’re casting takes you.

One of my favourite quotes, from businesswoman and philanthropist Madam C.J. Walker, is thus:

Don’t sit down and wait for the opportunities to come.  Get up and make them!

This week, get up and make an opportunity for yourself.  Go out and do something that you’ve been postponing for ages; contact someone who’s been constantly on your mind; join a new club; pursue a new career direction; talk to that stranger with the glimmer in his eye; go down that path you’ve been gazing down for months — the one bathed in sunlight but full of unknown twists and turns — the one that will take you who-knows-where . . . .

The more opportunities you create for yourself, the more magical your life becomes.

Your life is a rainbow.  It’s up to you to jump on and slide down.

Pot of gold icon

January 20, 2013

Book recommendation — “Haroun and the Sea of Stories” by Salman Rushdie

I thoroughly enjoyed the novel Haroun and the Sea of Stories by Salman Rushdie.  Very different from Rushdie’s other work, this book is like Dr. Seuss for adults — and children will love it, too!  Clever, magical and simply delightful.

Cover of the novel "Haroun and the Sea of Stories" by Salman Rushdie

August 21, 2012

Observed on the street: Magic, and innocence, in the air

Written on a paint-splattered picnic table used by children attending summer day camp at my local community centre:

"I love unicorns" written on a picnic table

 

“I love unicorns.”

Life is magical at any age, but when you’re eight years old, and a girl, that magic is just a little more potent.