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We all know that the world doesn’t revolve around us, and yet sometimes it can seem that way. When we get so wrapped up in our own minds and lives, it’s hard to remember to empathize or think about other people’s lives. An interesting method in dealing with our own self-involved tendencies is not only to consider the goals and backgrounds of those around us, but instead to contextualize our existence in even greater terms. Thinking about how large and mighty we are compared to some things can be very sobering when compared with how small and helpless we are in other respects!
The World and You: Start Small
Take a second and examine the smallest beings you can find. Think about little insects crawling on the ground. Then go even smaller, thinking about the particles in the air, the molecules that you breathe, the tiny elements of the universe that give you life, supply you with air, and make up the very essence of your body. You would not exist without these little tiny things, and most of the time we don’t even notice them!
The World and You: Find Yourself
Now think about your entire body, a structure made of millions of tiny parts that somehow work in complete harmony. And think about the people you love: all of them have bodies and brains that work just like yours, particles that have aligned to allow life in all of us.
Even though we are each headed in a different physical and spiritual direction, we have a lot in common, and it can sometimes be helpful to think about how similar we all are on different scales. On a basic level, our bodies all function in a somewhat similar way. We all have the urge to sleep and eat and a drive to succeed at whatever we find important. On another level, the people around you all found their way to this particular town, or country, some way or another. Think about how you connect to everyone, no matter how different you may seem.
The World and You: Think Bigger
Now think about the planet, filled with people who miraculously work. On such a large scale, we are like tiny particles that have formed a society. Each of us becomes a smaller unit that makes up the entirety of the planet, and we work together to allow it to function the way that it does. True, there are many problems with the world’s infrastructure, but isn’t it amazing that it functions the way that it does?
We are made of the tiny miracles of life, but we exist in a world and on a scale so large, we ourselves become the small ones. When thinking about our place in the universe, it is impossible to ignore our scale. Though we may be small, we are capable of creating big things, making big changes. Spend the day thinking about how the world and you fit together. How you belong, and how you have a purpose in this grand place.