It’s 2:30 in the morning local time. I opened the screen door to the sounds of the island night and the crash of the waves against the shore. I’m trying to resolve a five-hour difference and convince my body that I still need to be in bed. Jet lag.
We think that because we are capable of functioning on a high intellectual plane with the human brain that sets us, one might argue, above the rest of the mammal kingdom, we are masters of our lives. It is easy to fall into complacency and develop a confidence that our minds can conquer matter. Unless you’re trying to sleep at 2:00 am in a five-hour-delayed time zone.
Our body is hungry; our mind stops us with, “You’ve had enough calories today.” So we refrain from eating. At least some of us do. Not true for all of us.
But here’s a good question. When was the last time you saw an overweight wild (as in non-domesticated, not as in wild and crazy) animal? Wild animals apparently know when to quit. It’s not nature that causes us to overeat.
Why am I talking about eating at 2 am sitting beside a screened door with the rhythmic sounds of waves crashing on the shore–a lulling reliability, restrained power?
Is it my mind or my animal nature that keeps me awake tonight with my jet lag?
As humans we like to deny the laws of nature and our animal instincts as we strive for a higher order of life. A noble cause called civilization.
On this planet where the wave-sound keeps me company through my screen door I am just one tiny little creature living in a system of animals and plants on a planet that revolves about a sun and everything ruled by laws of nature we cannot fully comprehend.
The waves behave. They know their bounds. They push and recede keeping their unleashed power restrained. But all it takes is a shift in forces and the power of the ocean breaks it’s tether and rages as a hurricane or tsunami across it’s boundaries on the shore.
I’m tiny, minuscule, insignificant in the whole cosmic scheme of things.
Unless you’re inside my mind looking out. That’s a whole different perspective. That’s a whole different matter altogether.