Process of Illumination

Inspired Living Post

From April 24, 2010
For my new Inspired Living segment on Newstalk 1010’s Buddha Lounge Show, it occurs to me that I have created a whole new job description for myself:

Look for everything that’s good in the world.
Talk about it.
Write about it.
Teach others to do the same.

What could be better than that???

This is the first in a regular series of articles I will be publishing which focuses on “Real People Living Inspired Lives”. I will share with you some of the truly Inspiring People, Places, Events & Stories that I encounter in my everyday life and I will also be encouraging you – the audience – to email me or the show and let us know who or what YOU think is SO Inspiring so I can follow up on it and perhaps include it in an article or on the show. Go to to share your experience.

Regardless, I hope you will check in with this blog or the show for your regular dose of Inspiration.

Synchronicities and Benevolence

It happened on Good Friday. A beautiful, warm, sunny day. Thinking all the stores would be closed, I donned a pair of old flip flops and ventured out to do some window shopping and grab a coffee.  To my delight, many of the stores were open and Yonge Street was alive with people. With every step, I became more appreciative of this glorious day.

At one point, I stopped into Chocky’s to find some socks and underwear for my boys.  As I meandered about the store, the sales clerk was extremely helpful and we chatted as she assisted me. Then, a woman and her two daughters came in and I overheard her asking if they had any flip flops for sale. This caught my attention because mine were in pretty rough shape and I had thought about getting a new pair.  The sales clerk said she did not have any flip flops and the woman went on to say that her boots had given her blisters and that’s why she needed the flip flops. I laughed to myself, thinking about how amazing it was that this random event revealed two synchronicities.  First, it was just this morning that I had thought about throwing out my flip flops and second, it was only the day before that I had been speaking to one of my kids and recalled with affection how, in my younger years, I often preferred to walk on the city streets in my bare feet. It just seemed so obvious to me. I should offer my flip flops to her.

The woman was very appreciative of my offer, but was not about to take the “shoes off my feet”.  Of course, I completely understood, however it would have made me very happy if she had taken me up on it.  Nevertheless, we struck up a conversation and it wasn’t long before yet another synchronicity was revealed.

We discovered that the woman and her daughters knew my son, Ryan, but that was no real surprise. Ryan knows everyone. What really gave me goose bumps was when they told me that Ryan had become a hero of sorts when, after a party one night, he was in a fast food restaurant and saw one of the local thugs trying to sell a stolen cellphone.  Ryan recognized that the phone belonged to his friend (one of the daughters at Chocky’s) and, knowing how upset she had been by the incident, he decided to buy it back for her. Needless to say, I was very proud to hear that Ryan had performed such a benevolent act but even this did not really surprise me.  Ryan has always been that kind of person and while I would certainly put Ryan’s good deed and general good nature high on my list of things that Inspire me, on this day, there was another simple, unexpected bonus which made my heart sing.

The woman, her daughters and I chatted a while longer, and made plans to keep in touch. They left the store and I went to the counter to pay for my items. The sales clerk, who had overheard our conversation, smiled and asked me “Are any of these things for Ryan?” “Yes”, I said. “As a matter of fact, they are!” “Well, then”, she said,  “I think both of you deserve a discount.  You, for offering the shoes off your feet, and Ryan for getting that girl’s phone back.”

I have to say that I was practically speechless.  This sales clerk really had not investment in what she overheard, and yet she felt inspired enough to make the gesture.  I don’t know if she was the owner or an employee, so I hope she doesn’t get in any trouble for giving the discount on that basis.  Rather, I’d like to add Chocky’s to the “Inspired Living Friends Network” and encourage everyone I know to shop there.

Thanks to Chockys (2584 Yonge St, Toronto), Marsha & Co, and Ryan.