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From the Editor
December 2019: REFLECTION
Welcome to the December 2019 issue of Parvati Magazine.
The 18th century English poet, painter and visionary William Blake wrote,
“To see a world in a grain of sand
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand
And eternity in an hour.”
Everything we see reflects not only its own light, but the light around it and even the light shining from within our own selves. Through this mirroring, we can learn to recognize the presence of the infinite and of our own true nature. We can witness timeless presence in the light in the leaves, in the way the sparkling waves lap along the shore, and in the glint in the eyes of a stranger.
When we do so, we open to profound compassion, rooted in the understanding that we are inherently interconnected. What we do to others, we do to ourselves. The circumstances we encounter reflect our thoughts and feelings that create the trajectory of our lives. This life-mirror is like a wise teacher, who helps us grow, so that we may experience fulfilment and lasting joy.
On the theme of “Reflection”, this month’s articles celebrate this wisdom. In our Culture section, South African grande dame of dance Sylvia Glasser, who founded her performance company during the apartheid period, tells us about the power of movement to bring people together. Film director and Faithless founding member Jamie Catto speaks with us about his recent Ram Dass biopic “Becoming Nobody”. Celestino Couture, the latest addition to Project Runway, lifts the curtain on its uniquely inclusive and eco-friendly approach.
In our Wellness section, Eliud Kipchoge’s historic 1:59:40 marathon reflects his belief that “no human is limited”. Physician and bestselling author Dr. Dean Ornish reveals how human connection supports health and longevity. Chez Panisse’s Alice Waters highlights the way our food choices connect us to the rest of the world.
In our GEM section, the Ocean Anthem article explores the beauty of immersion into the ocean of life. The science column delves into the albedo effect, how the Arctic Ocean’s ice helps keep our whole planet cool by reflecting sunlight back out into space. We also reveal how easy it is to be part of MAPS: A Voice for Everyone for a healthy world.
Our Living section features updates from difference makers Captain Paul Watson and Oxford Saïd Business School, as well as tips from me to help you find greater presence and inner peace.
All this, and much more.
Thank you for reading the December 2019 issue of Parvati Magazine.
While you move through your busy days, you may forget the very force of life that sustains you. I have come to see, through the various ups and downs, challenges and tribulations in my life, that it is a supreme gift that we can walk, breathe—even exist at all.
By reflecting on seemingly small miracles that you may habitually take for granted, you discover that you are not a separate, struggling being. You are unbound consciousness, mirrored in all and through all, a part of an exquisite, harmonious and inspired cosmic play.
Your mind may try to convince you that what you perceive as outside yourself has nothing to do with you. However, everyone you encounter has something to show you about yourself and offers you an opportunity to care for and serve life itself.
Notice the angry driver, honking and swerving through the street. Remember, you too have the capacity for the same anger. Give thanks for making a different choice in this moment, as you wish the driver well. We all have been there—feeling frustrated, thwarted, unable to move forward at the speed we want.
Notice that street person who is asking for change, and know that you too could be there. Could there be parts of yourself that you have abandoned? Are there ways in which you feel hopeless, like a beggar?
Notice the baby in a stroller, wide-eyed with wonder as she gazes at a flock of pigeons—who to the adult eye may be a nuisance, but to the infant is a fluttering gathering of winged magnificence. Consider how you too still have the capacity to see the world through the eyes of innocence, purity and freshness. You have so much potential to be discovered.
It is a habit to see our differences. Instead, look for connections and similarities. In the mirror of life, you find that you are never alone, but part of a magnificent, wise and intricate whole. As part of GEM: Global Education for MAPS, the Marine Arctic Peace Sanctuary, Parvati Magazine is dedicated to that truth.
Eventually, a day will come when we no longer perceive life through any sense of separateness, when we will live harmoniously. This brilliant tomorrow is based on the choices we make today, one moment at a time, as we reflect on the gifts we have in the here and now.
Love our world.
We are one Earth family.