Today I walked along windswept beaches strewn with debris from the ocean floor. Weed and sponges, urchins and jelly-like organisms littered the sand and made for exceptional pickings for the curious of mind. My heart felt so free of shackles and burdens - for a split second I knew my place in this earthly soup - for one moment I felt my existence in relation to all things. Light, empty, useless, a little speck of sand tossed by waves and blown by the breeze. One small, fragile particle, no more important than that seagull, or that bluebottle jelly dying on the dry sand. For a small, ungraspable stretch of time the whole of everything rushed into me and through me and out of me, like light into the darkness.
And then it was gone, and I was a middle aged woman walking on a beach, poking at the seaweed again.
How strange that these moments find us when we least expect them? I can sit in silence, searching for it, and this sensation will elude me. But in flicking up broken shells with sandy feet a little of the universal truth sinks into this vessel of flesh and bones. This is life's wonder, its torment and its majesty. Some days I feel like every part of existence is entirely miraculous. Some days I let myself enjoy this feeling.
I suppose I could have walked those beaches all day had it not been for the impending rain, a cold wind, my increasingly heavy bag and a rumbling tummy. There were so many reasons to leave and still I considered staying very deeply. It struck me that I could always come back tomorrow. Yes, tomorrow I shall return to where the sea meets the sand, just because I can.
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