We can never know with any degree of certainty all the ways in which our choices, our life, has rippled far, far beyond us and into an interconnected world that is wide beyond comprehension. Wider still when we consider the lives of others (known and unknown) and the ways in which their choices have influenced and impacted us. It defies definition. It’s beyond our ability to fully comprehend or grasp.


These two words—mystery and magic—captivate me. To allow for them, to anticipate and expect them, invites me into imagination; into a belief in things that are beyond me, my understanding, my efforting, and my control. One might even say they require faith.

The poet, W.B. Yeats, said this:

The world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper.

This feels like perfect intention and hope: having the “sense” to see a world full of magic (and mystery).

It is my intention and hope.

As I’ve reflected on this for the past few days, I’ve felt the near-demand of competency and perfection show up in full force. Surely there is a plan or process or 3-step succession I can employ that will ensure mystery and magic.

And this? The part of me that already wants to control?

Deep breath.

Mystery and magic will not be tamed.

So, this leaves me with a choice:

Will I demand exhausting certainty and proficiency (of myself and everything/everyone else), or will I loosen my clenched fists, take another deep breath, and *just* trust? 

As is true with most things of value and worth, this is easier said than done.

I spent large swaths of my life certain that if I could just get everything in order—my thoughts, my emotions, my desires, my weight, my money, my marriage, my work, and yes, even my house—then I would feel safe, at peace, and whole. This is, of course, what our capitalistic culture promulgates and promotes. And it is, at least in part, what my former belief system promised (along with “reasons and proofs”). Everything hinged on my efforting, my competency, my perfection, and yet again, my control.

Fewer absolutes and more “Maybe.” Fewer answers and more curiosity. Less order and more that is random and strange and serendipitous. Less pressure, no more “perfect,” and lots more possibility.