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Do we live in a wonderful world? There simply is so much that goes on that is truly terrible, from destruction on a global scale to neighborhood or even family tragedies. Sometimes it seems like more and more disasters happen every day, and it can be incredibly hard to stay positive, or even keep your head up, when hearing about them.
What helps me is to remember all the wonderful, incredible things that are out there too – not just my family and friends, because to be honest, thinking about how much I love them can sometimes be overwhelming and even scary in the face of stories of loss and pain. What I like to think of is all of the amazing things that are also going on while bad things are happening. Because we always hear about the bad stuff, all the time, but rarely do we hear about the simple and incredible things that are happening every day as well.
There are heartbreaking statistics about the number of deaths every minute, but what about births? What about the number of babies, gurgling and giggling, who are taking their first steps while parents, brothers and sisters clap and cheer? What about the people laughing and blowing out their birthday candles? Couples kissing and falling in love? Instruments being played, and people dancing? How many people are praying earnest prayers, raising their voices in song, joining hands? How many children are climbing trees, or playing a breathless game of tag? How many people are exiting this life, not in fear or violence, but surrounded by loved ones at the end of a long life?
What Do You Find Wonderful About It?
It can be anything, anything that interests you, anything that catches your mind from its swirl of panic or sadness and shines on it like a calming light. I love facts about biology – amazing phenomena that the world offers up to us like gleaming treasure, things so often ignored in this circus of civilization. It honestly rocks my world, in a good way, to discover that plants can communicate with one another (and with certain insects!), or that butterflies drink animal tears for the minerals in them.
We may be killing one another, hurting one another, ignoring one another, but waterfalls are still thundering over the edges of cliffs, leaf bugs are still mimicking foliage better than any of our camouflage ever could, and flowers are still blooming in great, beautiful blossoms under the sun (and sometimes the moon).
You may love art, and take comfort in knowing that the Sistine Chapel ceiling still shines down on visitors, or that Van Gogh’s haystacks continue to radiate the warmth of the sun. Some may find consistent comfort in a symphony, or love discovering different versions by different composers. Others still might delight in taking apart an engine, or curling up with a good book. The world offers many wonderful things for each of us, and these are things not only to wonder at and delight in, but to take refuge in as well.
Celebrating What Life Offers
I don’t think it is belittling tragedy, or ignoring it, by thinking this way. I think it’s vital that we remember why life is good, why we should go on living it. We don’t have to ignore pain and loss by doing this. If anything, we become more humane and compassionate responders, and hopefully, preventers of tragedy when we remember the good things that we share as human beings.