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Two ways of seeing reality

“The true work of art is but a shadow of divine perfection.”

–         Michelangelo (16th Century Italian sculptor, considered as the greatest influence on Western art)

A kid takes a gun to school and fires indiscriminately. Teachers and students die, the world is shocked, and life goes on the next day as if nothing has happened at all.  The following day, election results grab headlines, and an hour later a Bollywood star dies. Then the football world cup thrills us. In the barrage of news that floods us every minute, we get desensitized to the significance of it all.

Any event has two realities- one that is apparent, and another more profound truth eludes most of us. The seeming fact of the passing away of a film star is the sadness that engulfs us or the grief of the family members. But the truth only few can see is the principle of death; how time is an equalizer. On hearing a famous person’s death, a friend mused on the Italian proverb, “After the game of chess, both the king and the pawn lie in the same box.”

While many of us live absorbed in the present reality, we fail to see events in our lives from a broader perspective. Wisdom books of all ages implore men and women to broaden their horizon; it urges us to see principles in play- either some divine laws violated or adhered- and the results they bring. This kind of expanded vision helps us make our own lives more meaningful.

One reality every year is summer makes way for rains. Another way of seeing this phenomenon is the consistency and harmony that exists in nature; how each year we are gifted with abundant rains without even asking for them. Behind the technical details of the various oceans on this planet, we could also see how so much water lies on ball-shaped earth. Imagine someone sticks water on a ball, and not a drop of it falls away! And the ball is flying at a rapid speed, and the water on the sides and bottom of the ball remains intact. What magic and wonder we could behold daily on this planet!

A small journey to see things beyond what is apparent; to understand lessons that life teaches us, to look for guidance and a direction in our sojourn on this planet, is the beginning of wisdom. And it’s free!

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