The Magic Of A Smile

The Magic Of A Smile




Antoine de St. Exupery was a famous French author. He was also a fighter pilot who fought in the Spanish Civil War against the fascists, before he was killed in the Second World War whilst fighting against Nazi Germany.

He had a harrowing, but no less fascinating encounter as a Prisoner of War. He was captured by his fascist enemies and thrown into a cell. He was grimly told he would be executed the next day, a fate that was confirmed by the sight of other POWs being led out to a firing squad.

At the sound of gunshots coming from the back of the prison, he became extremely distraught with the fear of impending and unavoidable death. A chain smoker, he fumbled in his pockets for a cigarette, which his trembling hand could barely transport to his quivering lips. But he had no matches!

“Have you got matches?” He tremulously called out to the jailer, who had hitherto resolutely refused to make eye contact with him.

Shrugging, the jailer came over to light Antoine’s cigarette, and as he lit a match for his prisoner, their eyes inadvertently locked!

AT THAT MOMENT, ANTOINE, FOR NO APPARENT REASON, SMILED!

And in that moment, some indefinable spark of amity seemed to jump from one soul to the other, and most certainly against his every conscious intention, A COMPLIMENTARY SMILE WAS GENERATED ON THE JAILER’S LIPS!

Having lit Antoine’s cigarette, for some inexplicable reason, he appeared rooted to the identify! He continued to smile, maintaining direct eye contact.

Jailer: “Do you have children?”

Antoine: “Yes… yes… I have three.” He replied, fumbling for his family pictures.

Jailer: “I, too, have three.” He produced his own pictures, and went on to talk about his plans for his children’s future.

Antoine: “You are a lucky man. I will never see my own kids again. They will grow up without a father.” His eyes filled with tears.

Jailer: (His eyes filling with tears too) “Come with me!” He said abruptly.

And he unlocked the cell door, leading Antoine out of the prison by a back entrance, and by back streets, until they reached the city gates, where he released the hapless prisoner. Without another information, he turned back toward the town.

ANTOINE DE ST. EXUPERY’S LIFE WAS SAVED BY A SMILE!

Behind the curtains which we put up to protect ourselves, our dignity, our social titles and our position from prying eyes, lie our authentic and real selves. The elaborate façade behind which we hide only serves to isolate and insulate us from each other, and prevent our souls from connecting with each other in a meaningful way. There would be much less hate, fear or envy if only we would allow the UNPLANNED, UNAFFECTED AND NATURAL CONNECTION OF A SIMPLE SMILE TO BRIDGE THE GAP IN OUR LIVES.

Consider this: why do we instinctively smile whenever we see a baby? I suggest that we do so because we are meeting someone who has no defensive barricades, and whose smile for us is fully genuine in its sweet innocence.

Here is my own experience with the smile: I have a rather disinctive hobby. I COLLECT PEOPLE! Much in the same manner that that some people collect stamps as a hobby. I collect people everywhere-the airport, the banking hall, and already on the street!

This is how it works. Next time, say, you are at the gas stop. As the fuel accompanying makes to fill your tank, break out in a wide grin, and let the smile light up your eyes! You will, at first, get a startled reaction, but this will always be followed by a return, tentative smile, and it is at this magic moment that your two souls have recognized each other from some celestial past; a past shared by all of God’s creations. You can then go a step further and say, “Thank you for being here for us all. You are doing a great job here. Have a great day!”

YOU HAVE MADE HIS DAY. YOU HAVE MADE HIS WORK WORTHWHILE. YOU HAVE GIVEN HIS SELF-ESTEEM GREATLY- NEEDED raise! YOU HAVE COLLECTED A FRIEND!

A smile costs nothing, however gives a lot. A smile enriches those who receive it, while not making poorer those who give it. A smile takes but a moment, but its memory can last forever. A smile brightens up the home, generates goodwill in business and it is character’s antidote for trouble. however, it cannot be bought or stolen, since it is of no value unless it is given away for free!

Some people may be too tired to give you a smile. Perhaps they also have no more to give, because of the cares and burdens of their lives. GIVE THEM ONE OF YOURS! Refuse to use the seemingly universal cloak of negativism and cynicism. Insist on being cheerful today, and then pass that cheer on to others with a simple smile.

SMILE! YOU ARE ON CANDID CAMERA!




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