The Magic Encounter
Posted Thursday, August 25th, 2011
Fifty-two years ago this coming Labor Day weekend, my Dad came home from work, rested for a while, and then left to get a haircut at Kandel’s Barber Shop in my little home town of Louisville, Ohio.
He never came back.
When our family doctor came to our door a while later to tell us, very gently, that Dad had died while waiting for the barber to cut his hair, the course of my life’s journey changed dramatically.
Last week I was back in Ohio for a family wedding and made a trip to Louisville with Joan to show her where I had grown up and to regale her with stories about my boyhood.
The house where my siblings and I were raised appeared to have been well cared for over the years, but it bore little resemblance to the home I hold in my memory.
More than half of the shops in “downtown” Louisville (which is only one block long) were empty, but I was able to remember the bustling and seemingly successful businesses that once had occupied each of them.
The one place that made me stop and pause, however, was the storefront that had housed Kandel’s Barber Shop.
It, like so many others, was empty, but at some point had been painted black and named The Magic Encounter.
The irony of the name and the appearance struck me immediately. Dad’s transition, which marked the beginning of a black period in my life, was in fact his Magic Encounter with whatever it is that we all will meet and experience at our journey’s end.
And that got me thinking about the many types of encounters we all have every day – with people and situations and opportunities we are not expecting.
Some of them turn out to be life-changing; some are seemingly inconsequential and easily forgettable. But I believe we have the ability to find the magic in any of them, because our reaction to them is always our choice.
If we can truly accept, and live, the teachings in Lessons from the Source that there are blessings and goodness in every situation, regardless of how our human minds might interpret it, it seems logical to me that we can choose to find the magic – or at least to accept that it is there.
I love this paragraph from Chapter Two of the book:
“You are so near and yet so far. When you have a higher perspective, you will see and understand clearly that your good, which seems so far away from you, is always close at hand—closer than you could ever imagine. You can reach out and touch it in spirit and bring it into the material world so easily, if only you can believe. It is there at your beck and call. You must accept the reality (and it is the ultimate reality) that you have ultimate and complete power over what happens to you on the physical plane. Reject the illusion of helplessness, of lack, of all of this being out of your control. Through your faith and right action, your good can come to you in an instant and keep multiplying. You control your own destiny. You are part of infinite goodness.”
We do, indeed, control our own destiny. We can choose how we will respond to any types of encounters in our lives. We can give them power over us and allow them to control our thoughts and emotions; or we can look for the magic and accept the blessings, even though we might never understand what they are. The choices we make on a daily basis help to set the tone for our days, and for the rest of our lives.