Day 23,751: The Secret Sauce of Enchantment.

Both magic and miracles come from an ask, according to spiritual author Marianne Williamson. The first, she claims, is when you ask the Universe for what you want. A miracle, she says, is come from asking the Universe what it wants through you.

I liked the concept, but felt the definitions were reversed.  A miracle is what many people pray for. Magic happens, at least in my life, when I’m not expecting anything and poof! magic happens.

According to Google dictionary, magic deals with the supernatural, or” the power of apparently influence the course of events by using mysterious or supernatural forces.”  A miracle, the same dictionary states is “a surprising and welcome event that is not explicable by natural or scientific laws and is therefore considered the work of a divine agency.”

I don’t agree with those definitions either, as they imply the difference is between divine intervention or just inexplicable forces. Here are two examples:

  • When a mother has a child, it’s called the miracle of birth. Yet, we know the biological process and understand in very human terms how it happens. We do feel that there must be divine intervention as our bodies seem to know what to do without us telling them.
  • When people fall in love they use the term “magic happened.” We’re not sure to this day why some people have chemistry and others don’t.  The fact that we can’t explain it, shouldn’t that make it more of a miracle than magic?

When you see an amazing performance it can be described as magical.  And Elizabeth Gilbert’s book on the creative process is called The Big Magic. Gilbert tells a few wonderful stories about how a creative idea, falling flat with one writer, takes on a life of its own with another. In fact, she argues, story ideas hit the writer in order to be actualized and if ignored, move on to the next open vessel willing to consider the project.

Heads or Tails?

People do tend to talk of miracles as divine and magic as  more human sourced spells, but the definitions still seem to fall short in describing one over the other. Perhaps it doesn’t really matter, as long we agree that some things are out of our control, some are wished and magically happened, some we can conjure up in our minds and hope occur, and others miraculously seem to occur in ways we could not have ever imagined.  Perhaps, magic and miracles are just two sides of the same coin — the coin of the realm —  with both sides needed for the coin to be effectively traded in? Maybe when the coin toss is tails  magic happens, and when it’s head the result is a miracle?

Either way, when enchantment happens the part that makes it special is the fact that we can’t neatly tie it up in a bow. A charmed life, event, or happenstance likely involves a bit of miracles, magic and even a pinch of pixie dust in the recipe. All we can do is appreciate enchantment when it falls into our hands and be grateful for however and whatever grand baker or recipe master cooked it up on our behalf.


Daily Focus on Gun Sanity: It’s not clear what will tip the gun debate pendulum back toward a more centrist focus. We can quote statistics, facts and figures all day, but stats don’t change hard-core minds. There’s too much emotion behind various positions.  Yet, we can’t just sit back and pray for miracles. Some magic has to happen to shift perspectives.  None of us are sure what the magic formula is, or we would have used it already.  For now, I think, it’s important to ask for what we want, and ask for divine intervention all at the same time. To move this debate, it feels magic plus miracles may be required, so we should begin with  asks — to representatives in Congress, spiritual leaders, friends and families — to do what they can to move the discussion from hardline positions to positions of compromise. Who can you ask to do something this week either in terms of coming forward, voting, or taking a stand?