Monday, June 24, 2013
This thought came to me during yesterday’s breezy hours: What if we decided to give names to separate summer breezes? I imagined myself seeing breezes pass through trees and saying, “Let’s see . . . I’ll name the breeze in the upper part of the oak tree Jimmy, and I’ll name the breeze in the lower part Joanne, and now the breeze in the lower part has changed, so I’ll have to rename it and ....” It would obviously be an impossible task. The breezes yesterday were not separate entities, but were part of something vast, part of the wide wind that was blowing through Mystic, which was part of the immeasurable and unified flow of winds across the earth. Only a fool would seriously think of isolating and naming single breezes. I began to wonder, then, whether it might be equally foolish to take seriously our isolating and naming any so-called separate, individual parts of our cohesive and harmonious universe. It’s strange, for instance, that the name “Hamilton Salsich” is used to actually identify me, as though I am a very small, distinct, and separate “piece” of the universe. In a way, that’s as silly as sitting outside and saying, “Oh, there goes Julia” as a breeze passes across my shirt. The truth is that the person referred to as “Hamilton Salsich” is not separate, not isolated, not solitary, but is always an inseparable and indivisible part of the single, endless universe. I think and feel and do things because the universe thinks and feels and does things. The great system of winds blows across the earth, moving the breeze in the trees beside our house, and the vast assembly of miracles called the universe (which is what I think of as “God”) dances in its sweet and ceaseless way, moving the life called “Hamilton Salsich”. Don't get me wrong -- I like my name. I use it to make life convenient for me, but I realize, all the while, that, like all names, it’s just a handy but basically meaningless label for something that can never be separated from the endless dance of which it is a small but very vital part.