As I was sitting at the beach yesterday, I began to consider the similarity between breaking waves and thoughts. There was undoubtedly immense power in the waves I was watching, just as there is in thoughts. I’m often unmindful of the massive force of each thought, but it’s there, just as surely as it is in every wave. Every few moments, a powerful wave came tumbling ashore, and almost every moment a new thought unfurls its power in my life. As I sat on the beach, I realized something particularly interesting: that I have no idea where a wave starts nor where a thought begins. If I try to trace a wave back to its origin, I pretty quickly get lost in the infinite cycles of waves and winds, and I get equally lost in attempting to pin down the precise starting point of a thought. Searching back, all I find is another thought, and another thought, and another thought, with no end ever in sight. I can only conclude that there is no specific origin of a thought, nor of a wave. They each happen in totally mysterious ways and for totally mysterious reasons. These thoughts led me to another understanding – that neither a wave nor a thought exists as a separate entity. Waves and thoughts are both part of endlessly complex systems that began back at the original “big bang”, and probably long before that. To say that a particular thought is “mine” is as silly as saying that one wave on one specific morning is separate from the infinite arrangement of world-wide waves and winds. Waves and thoughts, I realized as I sat on the sand, are powerful in thoroughly unfathomable ways.
-- July 8, 2007