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Me, Earth, Universe

How personification of our surroundings help foster to be a better person and live well

Have you ever pondered up at the night sky and just felt the mystical, shining stars scattered across the darkness?

Recently, I attended a retreat with our friends and we played a short activity of choosing a random photo from a choice of 50 different images. After it is chosen, we would gather around and discuss about why we have selected the photo. Some of the examples were a forest with a walking track, a rail track, a straight road, view of a beach with 2 children side by side, close up of two hands with tattooed “LOVE” and “HATE” on the fingers, a house with a family and so on. You get the idea right?

From the mass of choices, I quickly stumbled onto one photo without hesitation. There it was, a photo of the universe with the Earth taking up half of the photo by scale and the rest filled with stars and the moon (very similar to the one pictured above).

With confidence, I walked to the gathering circle holding the picture firmly and waited for my turn to share. The initial reason why I picked this photo was due to its beauty, the shine, and the wonder of life as to how we ended up in a place we call ‘Earth’. It’s such a questionable fact in my opinion. But when I started looking at the photo in depth, I realized there was more to it than just the beauty.

If you think you’re the greatest human kind, you haven’t seen the universe yet

I’ve personified the Earth as me (or you), the stars and the planets as others and the universe as the dimension we’re living in. Have you ever thought what humble could be best described as? Well, you’ve already visualized the word in the paragraph I have just written. Earth makes up just 0.2% in mass compared to the whole solar system, so we are no bigger than a mere dust on the ground from the universe’ perspective. 

We sometimes act big, strong and arrogant to others around us. We may live with such strong power and will, eager to beat, and to stay competitive. When we’re on a roll, we consider ourselves as invincible and others as weaklings. However what I can say is, no matter how great or influential you are, you are still the same mass in this world and so are others. So please stay humble, be respectful, be mindful and help those in times of need. Then you will become the shining star that we can see up in the night sky.

We stay where we are because that’s the only thing we see. It is difficult to think about changing our jobs, lifestyle or country of residence because there is no opportunity. But really?

Are you stuck in a mental crisis of deciding whether to stay at your current and unhappy workplace or to find somewhere external? Or maybe you are in a profession that just feels not right for you? And is it that you’re not doing anything because you have a fear of change, or it’s too stressful so you’re leaving it as is?

Well if I refer back to my image again, Earth is considered as you in your current setting and those stars and planets are considered as other potential opportunities. There should be no reason why you cannot explore into other areas of life because it is so abundant and opportunistic. I know from a personal experience that financial stability play a big role in the reason why you do not action. However you may be living a happier and healthier life in return. Or you could potentially meet both at reasonable grounds. What could it go wrong? If you truly believed that ‘grass is greener on the other side’ but after making the change you end up the opposite, the next move you make will most likely to be an upside than a downside.

So next time look up at the night sky and feel the difference, and fuel your mind. I think philosophy and life lessons can just come about randomly, which makes life interesting to live, and not living to be interested.

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People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.

- MARCUS AURELIUS

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