other stuff


a world of wonder

16:18 25/02/2009

Dear Reader,

do you ever take the time to stop for a moment and take in all the wonder of the world that we live in? I rarely do or rather I spend most of my time trying to block it out. The wonder of the world that we live in is so great that to let even a glimmer slip in, is to overwhelm my senses and induces such a sense of awe that leaves me dumbstruck.

We live in a universe that I can never understand, in a galaxy that I know exists and where I believe in the formation of stars and orbiting planets. To even dream about such gigantic objects is a humbling experience. From the galaxy, I can contract my vision to our own solar system where I can begin to feel a little more comfortable and thence to our own Earth which we abuse with little thought. The reality that we live in is a beautiful and awesome experience. The smallest petal on the ugliest weed can reveal such beauty that it takes the breath away.

But not alone must I contend with the natural world and all its myriad of life-forms, chemical reactions and physical forces, but also the wonder of mankind and its creations. I have always taken delight in language but the power of some people to transmute simple letters into an experience of the sublime still takes me unawares. Every day we live in a modern world that would leave our ancestors cowering in a corner to see the power that we wield and because we are used to it, we ignore it all. We ignore it to survive because to accept the all encompassing reality is too much for our brains to handle at one time.

Just before Christmas, I let a glimmer in. Watching a video from YouTube on a TV, via a Nintendo Wii and a wireless connection to the internet, I took a moment to think about the network of connections, the speed of it all and the diversity of them. Then the power, intelligence and invention that had been required to get to this point and the possibility that lay ahead. It was a moment of awe and wonder. My brain screamed how amazing it all was. How unbelievably amazing that supposedly simple and everyday experience was. Add to that the context of how far mankind had come in a 100 years and all I could think and say, was “How amazing! It’s simply amazing!” And then I managed to shut off the glimmer and I could function again.

Still every now and then I see something and think how awesome we are as a species! I see the contrail of a jet and I can’t help but think of the Wicked Witch of the West leaving a message in the sky for the citizens of the Emerald City. What would my Great-Great-Grandfather have made of a contrail? Would he have seen black magic or a sign from God? We look up and see that a plane has passed over our heads and then we shrug ourselves back down to earth to watch where we’re walking.

The world around us is so full of wonder, beauty and terror that to survive we must ignore it, but maybe we should spend more time just letting it wash over us and say to ourselves, “How amazing!”

The Writer

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