“Infinite Storm of Beauty”

“When we contemplate the whole globe as one great dewdrop,
striped and dotted with continents and islands,
flying through space with other stars all singing and shining together as one,
the whole universe appears as an infinite storm of beauty.”
~by John Muir, Travels in Alaska, 1915


I read John Muir with a pang of jealousy. I believe he lived in a time, and chose a life style that allowed him the privilege of thinking and writing words like these.

In this world of today, with its busy-ness, lists of important things to do, lights shining everywhere for safety and hiding the night, noise to keep us entertained, visual pulses everywhere that keep us hyped/amped up, who looks up and realizes the wonder of being here at all?

We are so enclosed in our compartmentalized spaces of home, community, job, identity, country, that we forget we are tiny little specks on a twirling dot of blue in the vastness of an expanding universe.

We are dust particle in a tumultuous whirlwind of beauty.

And we don’t know it.

We are a part of a universe, a part of Nature that we barely understand. We believe ourselves to be something important, and yet….

The universe is just fine with or without us. We are however, arrogant enough to live on a vibrant, living planet and not care about whether we are going to be responsible for destroying this marvelous, unique, irreplaceable planet that is, to our knowledge, the only home of intelligent life in the….universe…….

 We are such a very, very miniscule part of something that is almost inconceivably immense.

Contemplate what our lives, our existence means or doesn’t mean. Question the wars and violence. Question the resources of the planet and the people who control them and give or deny them. Question our choice to be humbled by our smallness or bask in the assumption that our intelligence is somehow permission to take and take and take.

Just beyond the atmosphere that is our bubble of reality, is an infinite storm of beauty that doesn’t care about us at all. Yet, here we are. For what purpose?

To love or hate? To create or destroy? To abide by violence or peace? To rejoice or to fear? To reach out or to hold back? To protect or abuse? To cause harm or to heal? To seek revenge or forgive? To see the good or the bad? To have an open heart or a closed heart? To discover and create for the good of others? To reflect the glory of God? To end the cycle of suffering? To speak of and walk with life-giving intent, or with hate and inhumanity? To live with grace, love, beauty—or ugliness, hate, rage and fear?

 I suppose it is how you look at life in the first place. Either it is a cherished miracle or it doesn’t matter.

“A man sees in the world what he carries in his heart.”~ Goethe

When you look around, what do you see? Do you see the whole globe as one great dewdrop, flying through space in the middle of an infinite storm of beauty? Do you feel as if you/we are all singing and shining together as one? As one?

What do you carry in your heart?


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