I paid a visit to the ocean recently. Neither of us were willing to do too much traveling, so we met halfway on the beach. But from the first wave I noticed she was a little blue; and my thoughts, too, were heavy, drowning in contemplations of writing projects and planning or marketing. For a while I was unable to immerse myself in the spirit of the sea.
But as I was walking along with the water washing at my feet, I asked myself suddenly why I was ignoring everything around me. Why was I deaf to the beauty of the sea’s roar? And I was forced to laugh at myself. I, a transcendentalist of sorts, was absorbed in pragmatic trivialities! I was being unfaithful to one of my prime philosophies, as best explained by Thoreau:
“Of course it is no use to direct our steps to the woods, if they do not carry us thither. I am alarmed when it happens that I have walked a mile into the woods bodily, without getting there in spirit.”
Suddenly the ocean was not blue, but sapphire. The sun glowed brighter. I let my heart become one with the sea, soaring above my stale thoughts; and for an hour I was something more than human. I was a star floating through Heaven.
I happened to have a penny in my pocket at the time, and on the whim I decided to make a wish for the fun of it, and throw the penny into the sea like a wishing well. This forced me to ask the question: What do I have to wish for? I could think of nothing. After several minutes of thought I made my decision and hurled my penny into the sea.
“I wish the world would open its eyes a little wider to beauty.”
That was the best penny I’ve ever spent. May your eyes be a little wider with wonder today.