What springs to mind when you think of sparkling things? If you were to make a list I’m pretty sure that diamonds would be somewhere on that list.
Why is it that diamonds sparkle so beautifully when they catch the light?
1. Because of the density of their mass they have the ability to slow down the speed of light –slowing it down to 80,000 miles per second as opposed to 180,000 miles per second for light passing through air.
2. The atoms in diamond molecules are arranged in a tetrahedral shape – this gives them their multi-faceted appearance. Examine closely a faceted diamond and you will see that it absorbs white light and breaks it apart like a prism, dispersing it into a rainbow of colours. Diamonds sparkle and dance with coloured light as each of its facets produces its own dazzling display.
What if we were made to shine like diamonds? What would we need for this sparkle to manifest in our own lives?
Let’s play with this metaphor for a while.
Surely the first requirement would be to allow light to enter us. By light here I mean the Qi energy or Spirit that is always present (pre- sent to us) and which supports our very existence. Our egos will tend to want to block this out with fearful thinking so if we are to sparkle with light then we must be vigilant seeking it out, noticing it and allowing it room to live in us. We must be open to the light and present to it as it appears to us in the moment. We need to stop crowding out the light with our sceptical and cynical thoughts that would be-little the idea of us shining like diamonds. I repeat “We are made to shine.”
Secondly in our bid to shine we must learn to slow light down so that its components – the seven colours of the rainbow (or the seven faces of love) – can be seen and then refracted through us.
Now we have to stretch our imaginations a little here. Obviously we don’t look like diamonds - we don’t have the multi-faceted surface appearance of a diamond that is necessary to refract the light.
However we are multi faceted beings composed of body, mind, spirit, thoughts, emotions, feelings, ideas, beliefs, habits, speech, personality, imagination and intuition and we have the ability to hear, taste, smell, see and touch – all these facets of our humanness have the ability to help us refract light or not. We have a choice here but we can only exercise that choice if we are aware that we have it!
Often our habitual lives run so much on automatic pilot that we forget we can override this by using our free will. It is up to us to discern how to use the many facets of our humanity to help us sparkle and shine and spread the light that is at the core of our existence.
What lights us up? Do we even know any longer? What lights other people up? Do we care enough to find out?
By observing the impact of our lives on ourselves and on others we can begin to discern what is needed to help us spread the light. For example when I express rage, or anger by shouting and hurling abuse at others does this light me up? Does it make the people on the receiving end light up? If I express tenderness and love does this light me up? Do those that receive it light up?
To truly observe ourselves without judgement is the key here. I say without judgement because as soon as our mind brings judgement into the equation then this will weaken our ability to shine. Self inquiry without judgement requires us to slow down so that we can take time to notice what is actually going on for us in the present moment. Slowing down helps us to observe and feel the effects of light within us or the effects of its absence.
There are many tools that can help us with this slowing down and noticing: focusing, meditation, T’ai Chi, yoga, mindfulness, contemplation, relaxation, poetry, chanting. Don’t be afraid to explore them and find out what suits you best. You will know which ones are for you by the way you feel – when you light up like a Christmas tree you can be sure that you are well on the way to being a sparkling diamond in the world.
By the way there’s one more thing you should know about diamonds.
In their raw, uncut state they are quite ordinary in appearance and lack the beauty of the shop sold gemstones that we are most familiar with.
Raw diamonds need attention if they are to be transformed into things of beauty.
So it is for us too. When we attend to that which we consider to be ordinary and mundane within us we are capable of transforming our base humanity into something divinely beautiful.
Wishing you a sparkle filled day!
The opinions I express here are my own. However I offer them with the word 'syat' next to them. 'Syat' is a word used by the Jain Tribe in India which means 'To the best of my knowledge SO FAR.' In the spirit of openness I invite comments from anyone whether you agree with my point of view or not. In this way we can all learn and grow together. Thank you.