Making magic in the Land of ‘Before’

It’s a place I didn’t recognize at first. A magical place whereI think theory blossoms into life.

It’s a place I didn’t recognize at first. A magical place, I think, where theory blossoms into life. The Land of Before is a busy, authentic little place where everyone works. People live there — actual people with rough edges and real needs. But something stirs in the land …

Could I get some directions, please? Maybe I will just head over to see.

When I first noticed folks who are seriously happy, I thought they must just be lucky. You know — maybe more handsome, shapely, or rich, or  smarter than folk like me. But as I looked, that wasn’t what I found. It was their ordinariness that troubled me. There was nothing exceptional about them. Nothing at all.

I had known some of them long ago, long ago in the Land of Before, when things were different. Some of them used to be intolerant, angry and unkind. One was painfully arrogant. Dishonesty and selfishness lurked in their past, as did roots of anger.

But in the Land of After they were happy. And changing a habit or two hadn’t done it. Something special had brought these people to a better land. Was it hope, courage, discipline? I was envious; I wanted to know. But in Lambert and Potter’s song about the Tin Soldier, the answer was so simple that most walked away when they found it.

Our tomorrows are brought to us by what we did yesterday. We create our ‘After’ in the Land of ‘Before.’

“Our lives are like tofu,” claims Boorstein. “They taste like whatever we marinate ourselves in.” That means that our only problem, our only real competition, according to Criss Jami, is the person in the mirror.

What a sad discovery! Or is it? It’s sad to find there is no magic, that there are no tricks and no shortcuts. Even talent is not needed. All that is required is practice. Over and over again, most of those who live in charmed places are simply repeating what they always did ‘Before.’

A curse word is a rehearsal just as surely as is a “Thank You.”  It’s the secret everyone knows.  Ask Pele, the soccer great.  “Everything is practice,” he says.  Practice for something.  And practice is how we will play.

The Land of Before is a magical place. It sculpts character, friendships, careers, and nations. We are what we practice most, muses Richard Carlson.

Wildly scary at first, finding the secret of magic in mundane repetition could be our most enchanting discovery. We are the ones that make us who we are. We can practice good stuff, or drill ourselves in patterns of loss, forever affecting the ‘After.’ It is in the Land of Before that we fashion the future.

We create our own ruts. Tomorrow will simply bring us more of what we practice today. What we plant in the Land of ‘Before’ blossoms in the Land of ‘After.’ And that is our only bloomin’ guarantee.  LOL@wltribune.com.

Rita Corbett is a freelance columnist with the Tribune/Weekend Advisor.

 

Just Posted

North Okanagan business Hytec Kohler set up a COVID-19 vaccination clinic at the Spallumcheen plant Friday, May 14. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
More than half of eligible adults in Interior Health vaccinated

Over 365,000 vaccine doses have been administered throughout the Interior Health region

Crews work to repair Horsefly Road east of Williams Lake . (Ministry of Transportation video)
MoTI activates district operations centre, response to flood damaged roads in Cariboo region

Engineers, experts being pulled from across the province to help

RCMP officers on scene Friday, May 14 off Bond Lake Road on the outskirts of Williams Lake. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Update: Williams Lake RCMP arrest one suspect after firearms incident near Bond Lake Road

Given the severity, suspect is being held in custody for a court appearance

An official naming ceremony for the Nekw7usem Bridge connecting the RC Cotton Trail to Scout Island will take place Monday, May 17 at noon. (Patrick Davies file photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
City, WLFN hosting naming ceremony for Nekw7usem Bridge in Williams Lake

The pedestrian bridge connects the RC Cotton Trail to Scout Island

Patricia Froberg (from left), Pat Mitchell and Dorothy Ouellette enjoy lunch prepared by members of the Old Age Pensioners Organization for St. Patrick’s Day Wednesday afternoon. Today, May 14, the Old Age Pensioners Organization Branch 93 and the Seniors Activity Centre are hosting an Old Fashioned Drive In lunch with car hop service at the SAC parking lot from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. (Greg Sabatino photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Old Fashioned Drive In Lunch on menu at seniors centre today, May 14

From 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., swing on by the SAC parking lot for an Old Fashioned Drive In lunch

Daily confirmed COVID-19 cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day rolling average in white, to May 12, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. preparing ‘Restart 2.0’ from COVID-19 as June approaches

Daily infections fall below 500 Friday, down to 387 in hospital

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Bradley Priestap in an undated photo provided to the media some time in 2012 by the London Police Service.
Serial sex-offender acquitted of duct tape possession in B.C. provincial court

Ontario sex offender on long-term supervision order was found with one of many ‘rape kit’ items

Rich Coleman, who was responsible for the gaming file off and on from 2001 to 2013, was recalled after his initial testimony to the Cullen Commission last month. (Screenshot)
Coleman questioned over $460K transaction at River Rock during B.C. casinos inquiry

The longtime former Langley MLA was asked about 2011 interview on BC Almanac program

Steven Shearer, <em>Untitled. </em>(Dennis Ha/Courtesy of Steven Shearer)
Vancouver photographer’s billboards taken down after complaints about being ‘disturbing’

‘Context is everything’ when it comes to understanding these images, says visual art professor Catherine Heard

Trina Hunt's remains were found in the Hope area on March 29. Her family is asking the public to think back to the weekend prior to when she went missing. (Photo courtesy of IHIT.)
Cousin of missing woman found in Hope says she won’t have closure until death is solved

Trina Hunt’s family urges Hope residents to check dashcam, photos to help find her killer

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam listens to a question during a news conference, in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Restrictions will lift once 75% of Canadians get 1 shot and 20% are fully immunized, feds say

Federal health officials are laying out their vision of what life could look like after most Canadians are vaccinated against COVID-19

Police are at Ecole Mount Prevost Elementary but the students have been evacuated. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)
Gardener finds buried explosives, sparking evacuation of Cowichan school

Students removed from school in an ‘abundance of caution’

Most Read