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Lin’s Bin: What’s The Difference?

Mystical. Magical. What’s the difference?

Magical can be a parlor trick. Pick a card any card.

Sleight of hand. Oh look he pulled a quarter from your ear.

Magical can be a spectacle concocted by entertainers on a Vegas stage.

Penn and Teller

David Copperfield.

The legacy of the great Houdini. How did he do that? Magic.

Like most people, I am easily deceived. I never can explain how magic is performed. I just trust that there is a reasonable explanation that I will not pursue so I can enjoy the magical moment that much more.

But magical can be as simple as an experience we have shared.

Magical can be a first date that ends with a perfect kiss.

Magical is the description of a moment that stands apart from our commonplace pursuits.

Magical is that earthbound state where for a time nothing goes wrong.

We took the kids to the zoo. We were able to park. They were feeding the sea lions as we arrived. The lions roared. The French fries were really dark and crisp. No one threw up. In a word, it was magical.

Magical can be an evening in someone’s garden eating pasta and drinking wine.

Magical can be the fiction of wizards.

Magical can be a concert at the Chicago Theatre with Jason Isbell.

Magical can be a group of young baseball players who do not fear success.

Magical, mystical. What’s the difference?

Mystical is something much deeper. Mystical is the exploration of our potential in a place without ego.

To clear the mind and leave it as still as a pond on a hot summer morning when we can look down and see the sky.

For all the bitter divisions and violence seeded by the world’s religions, one principle brings them all together. Mysticism. The idea that there is more of this world than all the microscopes and telescopes can show us. And while factions of Christians, Jews, Hindus, Muslims, Buddhists and others cast humanity as players in a professional wrestling burlesque, we know that at the center of all these faiths is the total absence of strife and division. There is instead a devotion to the truth that whatever we are, we are one. Maybe it’s the mystical consciousness of St. John of the Cross to achieve union with God. Or the peace beyond understanding that comes from the meditation that sets our basest desires adrift. It is a search. It is a quest that reaches back when all our stories were new.

Magical or Mystical. What’s the difference?

In musical terms,

Magical is Heart.

Mystical is Van Morrison.

“I was born before the wind.”


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