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Ordinary Magic

Nasrudin is a mythical figure from the Sufi tradition. He had the reputation of being a rascal. When he arrived at the border with a donkey caravan, the inspector had the guards search the saddlebags because they suspected him of smuggling. They found nothing.
Time passed and Nasrudin came to the border with yet another donkey caravan. He was wearing a beautiful turban with a huge jewel and a robe of high quality cloth. The inspector was more convinced than ever that Nasrudin was up to no good. He had the guards search everywhere, even inside the donkey mouths. Again, they found nothing.
Years later, the inspector ran into Nasrudin in the bazaar. “Nasrudin, you rascal,” he said. Those times you crossed the border I knew you were smuggling. I have no official capacity any longer. You can tell me, what were you smuggling? And Nasrudin answered “Donkeys.”

Linda: This story reminds us of the ordinary moments that have such tremendous value and are so often overlooked. While we are searching for the jewels and gold, the peak experiences of our lives, the dramatic moments, we can overlook the donkey moments. Intimacy is so often contained in the ordinary moments, a lingering gaze, a brief touch, a hug, a gentle word of encouragement. It is all these donkey moments lined up that make for the riches.

We have all had many poignant moments in our lives. To others, they may look ordinary, but because they touched our heart so deeply, they were magical. We all want many more of these beautiful moments. We want to have caravans of donkey moments each day, open-hearted moments making contact with our beloved, with children, friends, clients, students, pets, the plants in the garden, the trees in the yard, and the sky. It is these moments that we feel wealthy. What are the donkey moments of your life that make you rich?

Intimacy is the heart of relationship, going right to the core of what makes relationships alive, what makes relationships quivering, living, growing entities. When I imagine myself as a wise old woman, knowing what is true and important about life, intimate connection is of the highest priority. When I get to the end of my life, I want to feel a sense of satisfaction that I loved well, that I opened up to allow the people in my life to love me deeply, that I connected in an intimate way to other people and allowed them to do that for me. For me that would be success! That is the whole point of living life for me. If it’s not your highest priority, maybe it can be one of the ones that is up there near the top. Even though it may have been painful in the past, even frustrating, and confusing at times, eventually the resut can be so sweet that all the struggling to get there has been worthwhile.

Intimacy is what we all crave. We get so distracted by substitutes that we think we’d rather become successful at other things, rather than learn to be a great lover. It is supreme bliss to know that we are adored, to feel that we are the beloved of the one we adore. It is all the sweeter for having waited, and worked for it. At the end of our lives, the most important question is “How well did I love?” To be able to answer that we loved well, we must live life now and every day, in such a way that we can answer, “I loved fully; I loved many; I lived a life of devotion.” It’s possible for all of us, to bring this quality of connectedness more fully into our lives and to make our little corner of the world a heaven on earth.

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Ordinary Magic


Linda Bloom LCSW and Charlie Bloom MSW are considered experts in the field of relationships. They have been married since 1972. They have both been trained as seminar leaders, therapists and relationship counselors and have been working with individuals, couples, and groups since 1975. They have been featured presenters at numerous conferences, universities, and institutions of learning throughout the country and overseas as well. They have appeared on over two hundred radio and TV programs. Linda and Charlie are co-authors of the widely acclaimed books: 101 Things I Wish I Knew When I Got Married: Simple Lessons to Make Love Last (over 100,000 copies sold) Secrets of Great Marriages: Real Truth from Real Couples about Lasting Love, and Happily Ever After...and 39 Other Myths about Love: Breaking Through to the Relationship of Your Dreams. The Blooms are excited to announce the release of their fourth book, That Which Doesn't Kill Us: How One Couple Became Stronger at the Broken Places. They live in Santa Cruz, California, near their two children and three grandchildren. To view our upcoming events and to sign up for our free newsletter, visit our website at:

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APA Reference
Bloom, L. (2017). Ordinary Magic. Psych Central. Retrieved on June 25, 2019, from


Last updated: 12 Jul 2017
Statement of review: Psych Central does not review the content that appears in our blog network ( prior to publication. All opinions expressed herein are exclusively those of the author alone, and do not reflect the views of the editorial staff or management of Psych Central. Published on All rights reserved.