Jimmy was lying on a knoll in the middle of a meadow on a warm spring day staring up at the puffy white clouds as they rolled by, leading him to consider the big questions we all face:
What is the meaning of life? Why do we exist? Is there intelligence beyond the stars? What is the nature of God?
“God? Are you really there?” Jimmy said out loud.
To his astonishment a voice came from the clouds. “Yes, Jimmy? What can I do for you?”
Startled by the response but unwilling to let such an opportunity pass, Jimmy asked, “God. You exist in all places and across time. What is a million years like to you?”
Knowing that Jimmy could not understand the concept of infinity, God responded in a manner to which Jimmy could relate. “A million years to me, Jimmy, is like a minute to you.”
“Oh,” said Jimmy, considering the thought for a moment. “Well, then, what’s a million dollars like to you?”
God replied again, “A million dollars to me, Jimmy, is like a penny.”
“Wow!” remarked Jimmy, getting an idea. “God, you’re so generous, can I have one of your pennies?”
God answered, “Sure thing, Jimmy! Just give me a minute.”
~ Author unknown
The concepts of infinite and forever are simply too immense for us to wrap our brains around — at any age.
As a child, first beginning to grasp the expansiveness of the Universe, the image that came to my young mind was somewhere “out there” would be a boarded-up wall, much like one would see on an abandoned building, which marked the end of Space. That lead to the next question, “What’s on the other side?” All I could imaging was another wall, and another, and another…
Decades have passed and the perception of infinite is still beyond my comprehension.
Recently, I concluded a class which I shall describe as “a cross between philosophy, spirituality and literature.” It included the works of Ralph Waldo Emerson, Thomas Troward, and Emma Curtis Hopkins; all instrumental in what is now called “New Thought.” If there’s one lesson I’ve taken away from the reading and discussion, it’s that our perspective of what is happening around and to us, is far more incomplete than we can even begin to imagine. This I state without judgment; after all, we’re doing the best we know how to do with what we have. Yet reality is we see what we want to see, based in large part on what we expect to see.
Picture yourself looking at a landscape and then realizing you’re viewing it through a peep hole in the door. “Well, that won’t work,” you decide. “I need to experience it more fully.” So, you change your view to look out the picture window on the front of your house. Sure, the sight is more extensive, but you’re still limited by what’s directly in front of you, unable to see around buildings or walls. Suddenly realizing the constraints of remaining inside, you exit the building, experiencing the expansive vista in its entirety — or so you think.
Hang on there a minute bucko. There is still a horizon blocking your vision. Travelling in a plane, or even a space ship, provides a more cosmic view, yet it too is still limited, as what is beyond the planets and the stars? And so it goes…
We’ve evolved in our many revolutions around the Sun (I hope); yet the truth is we see our “collective self” not even through a peep hole but more akin to a pin hole in paper. I have come to believe that we are far more connected than we realize – can even imagine. Should that be truth, it stands to reason that what I do to you, I do unto myself.
Surely, if that is so, we must pursue methods to treat each other better, and seek out more — not fewer ways — in which to cooperate for the greatest and highest good for all.
But we better start quickly, because we don’t have a penny to spare nor a minute to waste.
About the author: Scott “Q” Marcus is a THINspirational speaker and author. Since losing 70 pounds 23 years ago, he conducts speeches, workshops, and presentation. He also coaches individuals and consults with companies on how to implement and handle change. He can be reached at www.ThisTimeIMeanIt.com