Copyright © 2021 I. Cowthern. All Rights Reserved.
"Ain't too proud to beg." Please donate: www.paypal.me/ICowthern
Years ago, I attended a lecture on African spirituality held in a banquet room attached to a popular restaurant on Crenshaw Boulevard. The lecture was one of many stops along my spiritual journey.
The host, an African minister born in the Motherland, introduced the guest speaker shouting, “He’s amazing!” That's all I can remember prior to the guest speaker's lecture and demonstration.
The guest speaker was a 40ish African gentlemen sporting a close-cropped afro, and wore a short sleeve shirt and slacks. He started off the lecture by saying, “You’ll never be broke again with what I’m going to show you.” An explosion of gasps from the 25 to 30 people in attendance flooded the room.
Moving forward, the speaker tore a sheet of paper in half which produced two sheets. He lit the bottom of one sheet with a match, and held it in the air with his thumb and index finger.
Soon the telltale green color of U.S. currency appeared at the bottom of the burning sheet. As the paper continued to burn more of the currency revealed itself. Until a twenty-dollar bill emerged and dropped on the floor. The speaker quickly extinguished the flames of the remaining paper.
A cloudburst of loud mumbling, shrieks, folks standing up from their chairs, and some departures followed. “Look, this is a twenty-dollar bill – U.S. currency!” The speaker walked around the room displaying the bill to the crowd. “There is no need for you to be broke!”
“It’s a trick!” shouted one man.
“No, it’s not– I’ll do it again.” The guest speaker performed the miracle again to a spellbound audience. Was it mass hypnosis? Or a sleight of hand magical trick? Or a case of harnessing energy? I pondered sitting back in the gray folding chair.
Two months later, I spotted the gentleman at the gas station on the corner of Jefferson and Crenshaw Boulevards while pumping gas. Our eyes connected and the glimmer of when someone knows or remembers you twinkled within his orbs.
Although my tongue and feet urged me to talk to him, and to press the gentleman for information, I just waved. I wasn't like Zora Neale Hurston* born with the gift of gab. As well as blessed with the ability to cajole tight lips wide-open and pull out their darkest secrets. What’s more, there was a strange vibe about him, and my spirit cautioned me to keep my distance.
Sometimes when I’m broke as hell, I think about the gentleman. Was he an adept? Was he a wizard? Had he mastered how to tap into the energy, vibrations, and frequencies surrounding us. And somehow fashion the power into physical manifestation to meet his needs? Or did he play the crowd at the lecture like a fiddle? I ask myself.
*Zora Neale Hurston was an African-American novelist, anthropologist, playwright, teacher, and a Harlem Renaissance mover and shaker.
**Support Reflections to Chomp On blog at: www.paypal.me/ICowthern
I'm I. Cowthern -- I enjoy watching old black and white movies and listening to jazz, pop, rock, R&B, and classical music.