Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Sum Total

"Life did not begin at my birth. ... I am the sum total of [others'] experiences, their quests."

Although my thoughts and my dreams often circle around my personal life, I am continually expanding those horizons. I have the choice of limiting myself, of putting blinders on. All I see then is what's in front of my own face. It's easier to live that way. I don't have to see, acknowledge or encounter what is going on around me. I don't have to read opinions or ideas that I don't already have or agree with. That would be the simpler way to live.

What Wiesel suggests is that life is not that simple. When we stop learning, refuse to expand our knowledge and experience, we miss the fullness of beauty. We lose sight of the beauty that lies in diversity and difference. Just as a flower garden is made up of a variety of sizes, colors and blossoms, so the world around us is made up of beauty.

His words ~ "divine beauty" ~ suggest that through diversity, exposing ourselves to what has come before as well as what walks beside us, we are lead to whatever we find or name as Divine or Holy.

As we look beyond ourselves, we have the choice to envision a different world and create a different mythos for the present and the future. We have the opportunity to leave things as they are, to believe we are powerless, or to broaden and share our experiences and our quests, adding them to the sum total that balances our world.

In light of recent events, what do you want to learn? How do the stories of your ancestors affect your choice? What do you want to leave for the generations that follow? How will you contribute to the sum total balancing the world?

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