Jesus called it the Golden Rule and shamans says “As above, so below.” More commonly, this ancient truth has been expressed as “What goes around comes around.” Heard any of these before?

If you’ve ever fought against injustice or untruths in your life, here’s something for you to chew on: We create the truth and justice in our lives (or lack of them) in the way that we treat others. In other words, what goes around really does come around.

Now if you’ve ever thought about this little truth, you can probably come up with several examples of how it has worked in your own life. For instance, if you mistreated a friend in a fit of anger chances are that you got mistreated the same way a little later. If you lie, cheat or steal, then expect other people to lie, cheat, and steal from you. If you are kind, sweet and gentle in your actions and in your heart, then others will do the same for you.

But let’s get a little deeper here. Let’s dig down to the level of our beliefs and see what’s really there. Instead of looking at single instances let’s look at the overall pattern of how we perceive the world. In general, do we expect an eye for an eye? Do we feel that people owe us something? Do we expect others to be perfect? If we do, then we’d better be ready to give up an eye for an eye, be indebted to others, and live the perfect life.

This isn’t a judgment or moral issue at all – it’s simply the manifestation of the “As above, so below” law, which can also be stated as “As within, so without.” So think about it this way. Living in an “eye for an eye” world can be very tedious. You have to keep track of who owes what to whom. You have to work very hard to make sure you get paid every last penny of what is owed to you. You have to chase people down all the time to make sure they appreciate and thank you. It’s a lot of internal bookkeeping. From a magical standpoint, this is living in a very heavy, physical reality that has little opportunity for magic to do its work.

On the other hand, if you relaxed your grip on life a little and allowed a more slack to enter your interpretation of other people’s actions, then the Universe gives you the same benefits. Here’s the perfect example. Say you observe a rebellious child who is flunking out of school. If you judge this child harshly and say, “You’ll never amount to anything unless you straighten up and fly right. You are no good,” you are judging that child according to a very conventional view of the world – a view in which no magic can happen. It’s all about hard work and elbow grease. There’s no magic. And no magic in his world equals no magic in your world.

But if you can find something, anything, to appreciate in that child then you’re home free. If you can even imagine a story in which he magically blooms into the person he wants to be then you’ve seen the magic. If you can see a possible transformation for that child that has nothing to do with logic or reasoning, then you see the magic. And then you’ve opened the door to magic in your own life. How you see him (and anyone else) is how the Universe sees you. It always comes back around.

When you hold people to a very strict moral or behavioral code then you have to follow that same code. When you appreciate something in everyone you meet and when you can see the magic in their lives, then you have magic in your life too. Allowing the rebellious child his rebellion and not forcing him (in your mind) to “straighten up and fly right” means that you don’t have to pay so much for your own “mistakes” as you experiment with spiritual growth. In fact, it gives you the freedom to experiment with less pain and more magical joy.

When you can, take a light touch in dealing with the world and the Universe will always return the favor!

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