To see a world in a grain of sand
And Heaven in a wild Flower
Hold Infinity in the palm of your Hand
And eternity in an Hour.
William Blake (1757 – 1827), Auguries of Innocence
It’s still one of my favourite Blake poems because it echoes my sensibilities. Perspective is everything, really. Speaking from the vista of a beautiful birthday yesterday, thoughts tend to lean towards reflection and pondering.
How we view and respond to life events is directly connected with our well-being. I doubt the ant cares or has even noticed how tall the white, waxy bluebell is, let alone contemplated the never-ending, infinite magnitude of the tree compared with his ant’s-eye aspect. He never thinks: “I’m only small, what can I do, how can I possibly achieve this?” His only focus in the present moment is to get the small beetle back to the ants’ nest. If he, in his minuscule dimension began, for a moment, to become worried about the proportion of everything or view the landscape as insurmountable, mammoth blades of grass – the poor ant would never be able to do what he normally does with the greatest of ease. He is able to do so because his focus is centred entirely upon the task in front of him with intent, determination and a certain detachment. Nothing else is relevant to his immediate role.
Similarly, the diligent bee’s horizon differs from the panoramic view I like to contemplate (as well as the microcosmic world of the bee on the white rose). The bee is engrossed solely in collecting pollen now the rain has stopped. Simple.
When we are like an owl on our own shoulder observing events from a wiser aspect, we can see with different eyes: a) a clearer interpretation of what is being said/done; b) how best to respond without losing control of our emotions; and c) that we are not the events themselves but spectators. “Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.” Albert Einstein.
The telescopic view of St Paul’s Cathedral is exactly 10 miles from King Henry’s Mound at Pembroke Lodge, Richmond Park. It is an ancient burial ground that is connected to another burial ground lower in the valley. The story goes that Henry VIII was hunting deer with his fellow men and stopped at a particular time at that point to listen to the bells ringing at the Tower of London which signalled his wife had been beheaded, which he had ordered. Then he carried on hunting. In those days, with no traffic noise, construction cacophony or other aural intrusion in London and no low overhead aircraft disturbance in Richmond, the sonorous death knell would have carried across the airways with crystal clarity.
What perspective that entity had on the value of human life isn’t worthy of reflection but the view, on a clear day, is lovely in all directions.
There was a Door to which I found no Key:
There was a Veil through which I could not see:
Some little Talk awhile of Me and Thee
There seemed – and then no more of Thee and Me.
Omar Khayyam (1048–1131) Edward FitzGerald’s translation
We are here for a short time in this limited three dimensional world before passing through the veil but there is so much joy, wonder and fascination everywhere. Whichever perspective, whatever view we have in this moment, if it is not serving us, we can change it instantly, as every cell communicates the negative or positive messages in a vast network of instantaneous transmission. We can, therefore, change our state in seconds.
However you are feeling today, whatever your condition perceived or actual, we are in control of our soul’s outlook. All darkness dissolves in the clear light of dawn.
With blessings of scintillating light