You know the story: a fisherman catches a magic fish, which can actually grant 3 (or more) wishes. The fisherman then asks for the most important 3 wishes, fish grants them, everybody lives happily ever after.
Well, I don’t buy that. Don’t get me wrong. I do think those “magic fishes” are real. I’m convinced that some of them are somewhere out there, waiting patiently to be found and the quest to find them might be really worth the hustle for many of you. I’m just not into it.
I find the idea of somebody else who can do things for me (or, even worse, instead of me) somehow disturbing. If there’s somebody else who can do this stuff, then, by all means, what’s my purpose here? Why am I here for anyway, if, just by expressing my dreams out loud, somebody else can make them real for me? It’s frightening. And, to a certain point, extremely disempowering.
I don’t want a magic fish to grant my wishes. I want to do whatever it takes to make my wishes come true. I want to fight for my dreams, to work for my dreams, to fail and get up and to learn and to live and to be tired and to start all over again for as many times as I have to for my dreams. Because that’s where the real joy is. It’s not in having a dream fulfilled in front of your eyes, in a matter of seconds, by a magical “shortcut” in the universe.
As a matter of fact, if you really look into it, the mere thought of having a magical fish granting your wishes is just the expression of your own incapacity. When you search for a magic fish to do the job for you, you’re actually telling: “I’m not able to do this on my own, I’m just not good enough for the task, I need somebody else to help me out. I need a magic fish.”
The irony is that, most of the time, we do receive a lot of help. But not when we’re asking for it. Isn’t this ironical, or what? Whenever we set our mind to do something, whenever we foster enough power and focus to keep things on the right track, something indeed magical is happening: it’s like a hidden conspiracy which will open doors for us, which will bring the right people, the right tools and the right attitude to finish whatever we set our mind to finish.
But the moment we give that power away, (to circumstances, to other people in our lives, to addictions or self-defeating behavior), the moment we move our focus from ourselves to something outside us – and we do this by using the symbol of the “magical fish” no matter what physical shape we may put on top of it – well, the “good conspiracy” ends. No more help. No more serendipitous encounters. No more adherence. Instead, we experience struggle. We feel lost. We’re sailing away, at the mercy of uncontrollable winds. And, when we find ourselves alone in this infinite ocean of arbitrary information, in this unknown, unmapped sea, the only hope is for the magic fish.
We may, or we may not find it. It’s like lottery. And I don’t like lottery. Too random for my taste. Also, too emotionally draining. I mean, the wait. The expectation. The stress. Nope, I don’t like this movie.
What I do like, though, it’s the conscious travel. It’s the assumed journey towards whatever goal I may have in my head. And a journey has many ups and downs. It’s not always fun and joy and spectacular landscapes. Sometimes it’s bad luck, bad weather or unexpected incidents which are taking you out of track. Well, those are part of the journey too.
The difference between a journey and a lottery is that in the journey you take responsibility for everything that happens. You accept the outcomes and adjust your response. In a lottery, you’re not responsible for anything, everything happens “outside” you.
In a conscious travel, you keep moving forward, no matter what. In a lottery, you have no other options than to wait.
While traveling, you’re excited and ready to experience the unexpected at every corner (being it the “good” or the “bad” unexpected). When you’re waiting for a magic fish, you’re stuck.
So, if someday, by some unexpected struck of luck I may find a magic fish, all gold and shiny and ready to grant me 3 wishes, I don’t think I’ll follow through. I may have a chat with him, because, you know, there’s so much you may learn from those fishes, but I don’t think I’ll use the magic powers.
I know, 2 minutes after this magical encounter, I may regret this decision like hell.
But I’ll take that chance anyway.