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.
Auguries of Innocence by William Blake
There’s something about sand that makes a man philosophical. To grab a fist full and watch it fall out of every crack and crevice, blowing onto infinity and some returning to where it started.
I find myself wandering down strange paths.
There are more molecules in a glass of water then all the grains of sand in the world. Which makes me reflect on the vastness of the universe, the sheer scale of all things from the monumental stars to the molecules of water in the oceans.
How small am I.
The sand falls from my fist, and as it goes it makes its own special sound. The sound of sand falling. It dawns on me that this is one sound in the grand symphony which nature plays. The maracas of leaves in the wind, the drum beat of the waves in the sea, the solos of the birds in the trees. A grand show, the grandest show, that exists all around us. The sand falling from my palm is part of that symphony.
My smallness does not exclude me.
The sand falls, some settles, and some is lost flying in the wind. I take a moment to reflect on its journey. How long – how many thousand years – did it take for this grain of sand to come here. How many have been born in that time? How many have died? What empires born, created, and destroyed? What was this grain of sand when Caesar was stabbed. Did it care when the Incans were destroyed?
My smallness is irrelevant.
There’s something about sand that makes a man philosophical.