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A moment of magic on a park bench

park bench beside sea

Little moments tend to be underrated in our society. We fantasize about "big" moments still to come that will surely bring us happiness and fulfillment -- but it is often the little moments that really have power to change or bless our lives.

The touch of the divine

Many years ago, as a young man, I gave up my life in England and went to British Columbia in response to an irresistible urge to find true meaning and freedom.

It was all very exciting and wonderful. I got a job as a reporter on the Daily Colonist in Victoria, such a beautiful city. But I was troubled at times by a nagging doubt or question about whether I was really doing the right thing in my life -- whether I was really on the right path.

One day I picked out a book from the library called Cosmic Consciousness, by Richard Bucke -- you can see where my interest and passion was in life -- and decided to take the book with me to Beacon Hill Park. It's a beautiful park in Victoria overlooking the ocean.

It was a gorgeous summer day. The sun shone out of a cloudless sky, and the ocean was shining too, stretched out all around me like a shimmering blue carpet. I sat down on a bench and opened the book -- but before I could read a word, a tremendous sense of stillness and confidence swept through me.

It's hard to describe that moment. It was like God touched me on the shoulder and said I really was on the right track with my strange, solitary quest -- a quest no one in my family had been able to understand -- to find the truth of my existence.

I knew in every fiber of my being that all I had to do was to keep on going.

I left the park glowing with a deep sense of peace and happiness. I didn't know how my destiny would work itself out, but I knew everything would unfold just as it should as long as I played my part.

The true potential of now

As change rips through our world with over increasing velocity, life is calling to each of us to open our heart more fully than ever before to the true magic and fulfillment that is always present “now."

It is in the moment -- and only in the moment -- that we may sense, and know, the presence of the divine. Not some strange external presence but our own presence, our own peace, our own wisdom. The pure, timeless perfection and love of our own being.

Trust your own being. It is calling to you now in the sacred stillness of your heart. You will never see your true face in the future no matter how hard you try.

What are some magical moments in your own life that have really made a difference?

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{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

Marty June 13, 2011 at 2:51 pm

Hi Christopher,
In the last year or so I have had frequent periods of living for the moment of enjoyment. What I hadn’t realized until recently is that the very act of embedding that moment multiplies and creates more! Every time I play with my band and experience the pure joy of the music and the appreciation of the audience, I feel as if I am on a different plane.
I used to suffer with dreadful bouts of nervousness that froze me rigid. Do I still get nervous? Of course I do, however it is empowering now and allows me to play on the edge.
Those moments I experience involve expressing gratitude in my heart for THE moment of great joy.
Thanks for the reminder.

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Christopher Foster June 14, 2011 at 12:41 pm

Hi Marty,

I can’t tell you how good it was to read your comment and share your experience and your wonderful victories. I’m deeply touched. You are an inspiration, I hope I get to listen to you play some time — but meanwhile I just send you every good wish and I’m sure there are many more wonderful moments just waiting for you to discover. Thank you for your comment.

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Robin Easton June 13, 2011 at 8:45 pm

Dear Chris,

This is just so lovely, filled with grace.

I have had many such moments in my life, and I think more now than ever. That says a lot as I really have so many astounding moments. Yet, It seems that lately, the faster things swirl around me, the more I find myself slowing down, taking stock, making time be experience and acknowledge peace, experience THIS moment.

I find myself trusting more than ever my intuition and heart. Letting go all that is based in fear, in my work and life. When we do this we are left with who we REALLY are, which is Love and Peace. I am seeing more than ever that it is not about “finding” peace, wisdom, or love. It is simply a matter of letting go all that is NOT these things. Then we realize that all around is (already) peace, knowing, wisdom and love. So so magical, so soothing, so “being-ness”.

I’ve been reading your posts and they are simply heart-filled, beautiful. Thank you my dear compassionate friend for sharing your stories, wisdom and love here on these pages.

Hugs to you and JoAnn.
Robin

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Christopher Foster June 14, 2011 at 10:36 am

Robin, hearing from you and sharing your wonderful, generous-hearted spirit is always such a happy experience for me. Yes, having read your book and got to know you a bit better I am quite sure you have had many astounding moments, and isn’t that just as it should be.

But I think the shift you describe here is so interesting and really so vitally important, that the faster life moves in us or around us the greater the need to slow down inside ourselves. It’s a paradox isn’t it, I think it has something to do with balance and how Nature loves balance so much. Blessings and thanks so much for sharing in this conversation.

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Marty June 14, 2011 at 1:26 pm

Robin, I can’t help but hijack this thread and add how beautifully you express your thoughts on this subject. I fully concur with Christopher’s comments below.

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Robin Easton June 14, 2011 at 1:45 pm

Oh!! Dear Marty, I am so very honored by your words here. They mean SO much to me. There is such a joy in being seen. Your ability to “see” also says SO much about your, Marty. And it is all beautiful.

The Vizier June 14, 2011 at 12:58 am

Hi Christopher,

How true it is that we favour the big moments over the little ones in our society. In truth, it is the little moments that matter because there is so much within it that is not blatantly obvious like the big moments. As such, it is easier to miss the little moments if we do not pay sufficient attention. And to fully appreciate these little moments, there is no other way than to make a conscious effort to be aware of the present and the now. I think you have described such a moment perfectly with the little story you shared about your sitting on the park bench. Interesting how it is the little things that bring with it a deeper revelation isn’t it?

The most life changing moment I had was when I rushed to my favourite bookstore to pick up a copy of the Book of Changes. I had just heard about it from my friend and was intrigued by it. After a little more research online, I had to get a copy myself and when I did lay my hands on it, it was a special moment indeed. Although it may seem like just getting another book, it was actually my first step to learning how to master change in life.

Thank you for sharing this lovely article! 🙂

Irving the Vizier

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Christopher Foster June 14, 2011 at 10:28 am

Thanks Irving,

You remind me of a similar experience I had when I was young, getting ready to get on a ship in Auckland and go home to UK. I went into this bookshop and though I had never even heard of Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman, it kind of jumped off the shelf into my hands.

I carried the book with me wherever I went for two years, and it helped keep a vision of truth and freedom alive in me all that time. Personally, I think there is an Angel with a special mission to do all they can to help people in need find exactly the right book at exactly the right time … Best wishes and have a wonderful day.

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sheila June 14, 2011 at 10:02 am

Good day Chris..

What a lovely posting to read this morning… you reminded me of some childhood moments running around in Beacon Hill park, although I was too young to appreciate what nature unfolded before me I sure loved the petting zoo with all those adorable animals and can’t forget getting a soft ice cream cone treat.

It is about the lifetime of little moments that we should all take the time to enjoy and apprectiate. I’ve grown up somewhat since my childhood days…. so right now I am delighted in watching fluffy white clouds against a pretty blue back ground rolling over the mountains overlooking Denver… what a pretty sight….
cheers
Sheila

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Christopher Foster June 14, 2011 at 10:16 am

Sheila, thanks so much for your lovely words. I’m there with you watching those gorgeous white clouds float over the Colorado mountains beneath an azure sky… I read a quote the other day from someone who said, “Every day on this planet is a joy.” This was a person with some real problems going on as I recall.

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Barbara June 14, 2011 at 6:51 pm

It rained today… I had to go out on the porch and listen to the sound and watch the raindrops as they came down. Our area is so parched. A family of cardinals were also enjoying the rain as they came to my feeders. Such happy sounds. Not a big moment at all, but such a special one for me.

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Christopher Foster June 15, 2011 at 11:59 am

Thanks so much for sharing this moment Barbara. I may be a 100 or even 1000 miles away but I can touch your experience here just by sharing your words. I could even hear the raindrops coming down:-)

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Phil D. Malmstrom June 15, 2011 at 6:17 am

Reading this today Christopher, the phrase “God exists in the details.” came to mind. 🙂

While we tend to gravitate toward seeking those “Burning Bush” moments, it’s the flood of everyday Blessings and “Spiritual Nudges” such as your moment at the park that can bring us that close connection to our Creator, when we choose to open our hearts to Him.

Thank you for another lovely article, and Have a Blessed Day!

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Christopher Foster June 15, 2011 at 11:56 am

This is a lovely comment Phil, and so true. Maybe the burning bush appears when it should appear, or maybe appears in increments when we attend to the small moments and the little “nudges” of every day?

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Claud Wolf June 15, 2011 at 7:40 pm

Your comment that nobody seemed to understand your quest resonated very deeply. I am only 49, but I have been a seeker- often in a negative way- of that indefineable something, that spark that will help me see- well, what there is to see. To remove the rose colored glasses, to see things unvarnished and raw, and to find it is beautifull as it is, without ornamentaion or ‘accessories.’ Thank you for the wonderful post! It does me good to meet another on a path less travelled.

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Christopher Foster June 16, 2011 at 10:42 am

Claud, bless you. It does me good too to meet you, it’s always such a pleasure to find a “kindred spirit.” I think there are more people than we sometimes realize on this “path less travelled.” But regardless of that, what can we do but stay true to our own deepest instincts and yearnings to find true meaning and happiness and fulfill our true mission here.

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Daniel M. Wood June 16, 2011 at 3:36 am

I have always had a lot of focus on my goals, on efficiency, on planning for how to complete my goals and what I will do when I have accomplished them.

The problem is that I often let today slide, I often miss the little things, which is wrong.
I am trying to live more in the now and that has really made the life brighter, that is what is important.

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Christopher Foster June 16, 2011 at 10:33 am

Daniel, thanks. And congratulations. It seems to me you are recognizing a need for some re-balancing in your life and making real changes sooner rather than later.

My wife likes to say it’s never easier to tackle something difficult or challenging than right away, before it gets any bigger. So stick with it. I believe you will find that getting ahead of the curve here so to speak will bring big dividends of greater happiness and peace that will increase, too, as years go by. As you say, making life brighter.

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Galen Pearl June 16, 2011 at 5:46 pm

Hi, Christopher,

I popped over from Irving’s blog after seeing your comment there. This post really struck a chord for me. I can think of several times in my life when there was a distinct awareness that my life had just changed. Sometimes I was not clear about how it had changed, but there was a clear before/after demarcation. These moments are so precious, sometimes terrifying because of the unknown changes they bring, but also full of promise and faith.

I read your profile–You have had (and continue to have) and interesting life! I look forward to reading more.

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Christopher Foster June 17, 2011 at 10:31 am

Galen, it’s a pleasure to connect with you. I’ve seen your name in the blogosphere, of course. Your words are absolutely beautiful, very poignant and true. Look forward to getting to know you better as we continue in this great adventure we call life. Take care.

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John Sherry June 17, 2011 at 9:59 am

Christopher, my magical moments always involve people being together and with love in the room – old Xmas times, children playing, hugs and kisses. You see love creates magic and this spell can last forever. It has in my heart.

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Christopher Foster June 17, 2011 at 10:34 am

Beautiful John. It always comes back to love, doesn’t it. The one thing that never dies and it’s who we truly are. Thank you so much for sharing your words and your spirit.

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