Recently, my friend shared a beautiful piece on the ocean by Wilferd A. Peterson, an American author. It brought back so many memories of Marine Drive and the gorgeous Arabian sea. The lines aptly describe the different moods of the sea and the rich references to our life. Thanks Radhika for sharing this!
‘Nothing external to me can have any power over me’
The ocean has many moods. Sometimes the colors of the sunrise are painted on the ocean surface as on a huge smooth canvas. At other times whitecapped waves thunder against the shore.
The surface of the ocean changes constantly. Now it is smooth and quiet. Again it becomes violent and tempestuous. But in its depths, down under the storms that whip the surface into a fury, there is a zone of eternal calm which no storm ever reaches, no hurricane ever ruffles.
The surface of life is also in a state of constant flux, with good days and bad, victory and defeat. To maintain, as the ocean does, a deep inner calm, while the storms of misfortune, fears and worries lash at the surface of life, is to discover the secret of serenity.
Years ago, when Thomas Edison’s factory burned down, he wasted no time bemoaning his fate. Immediately after the disaster, the reporters found a calm, quiet man already at work on plans for a new building.
When Emerson’s home was destroyed by fire and his precious books were being reduced to ashes, Louisa May Alcott came to console him. The great philosopher said, “Yes, yes, Louisa, they are all gone, but let us enjoy the blaze now. Isn’t it beautiful!”
Such people are ocean personalities. In their inner depths, they are not defeated by what happens to them.
The towering waves of circumstances cannot reach us when we go deep within to seek the peace that passes all understanding. While the surface of life is in turmoil we can find an inner calmness to see us through.
Walt Whitman must have discovered this truth, for he wrote,“Nothing external to me can have any power over me.”
The stillness of the ocean depths is a symbol of perfect poise.
~ Wilferd A. Peterson, American author
(Image courtesy: Amol)