Home » Excerpts » The Seeing of Magic in the Ordinary

With deep mindful experience of the world,
everything in it is great magic.

– Stonepeace

‘The Little Prince’ by Antoine de Saint Exupery is another wonderful example of literature that evokes the sense of ordinary, or elemental, magic. At one point in this story, the little prince is very lonely and wants the fox to play with him, but the fox says that he cannot play unless he is tamed. The little prince asks the meaning of the word ‘tame.’ The fox explains that it means ‘to establish ties’ i such a way that the fox will become unique to the little prince, and the prince unique to the fox. Later, the fox has been tamed and the little prince must leave him, the fox also tells the prince what he calls ‘my secret, a very simple secret,’ which is, ‘it is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.’

Saint Exupery has a different vocabulary here for describing the discovery of the magic, or drala, but the experience is basically the same. Discovering drala is indeed to establish ties to your world, so that each perception becomes unique. It is to see with the heart, so that what is visible to the eye becomes visible as the living magic of reality. There may be thousands or billions or perceptions, but they are still one. If you see one candle, you know exactly what all the candles in the whole world look like. They are all made out of fire, flame. Seeing one drop of water can be seeing all water.

Drala could almost be called an entity. It is not quite on the level of a god or gods, but it is an individual strength that does exist. Therefore, we not only speak of drala principle, but we speak of meeting the “dralas.” The dralas are the elements of reality – water of water, fire of fire, earth of earth – anything that connects you with elemental quality of reality, anything that reminds you of the depth of perception. There are dralas in the rocks or the trees or the mountains or a snowflake or a clod of dirt. Whatever is there, whatever you come across in your life, those are the dralas of reality. When you make that connection with the elemental quality of the world, you are meeting dralas on the spot; at that point, you are meeting them. That is the basic existence of which all human beings are capable. We always have possibilities of discovering magic, whether it is medieval times or the twentieth century, the possibility of magic is always there.

Shambhala: The Sacred Path of the Warrior
by Chogyam Trungpa
Get it at Awareness Place shops or Amazon

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