Article: WHAT DO YOU SEE? | Abel John
“Two men looked out of the same prison bars. One saw the stars other saw the mud.”
No doubt, staring out of our windows has become a part of our day, and looking into the seamless perpetuity of the skies and pondering over the brevity of human lives too, which rather seems to have been even shortened through the lens of the present. Our phone calls are conveying more messages of loss than it did yesterday, our televisions are continuously displaying the despondency of people, our newspapers are reading out to us the faltering of every strategies of our leaders. The cries of people are becoming louder and even more, the voice of laughter is subsiding under the crackles of burning pyres, and the sound of the spades digging graves in the ground. Unto where shall we turn our eyes to?
The two men in the prison can be taken as the depiction of the entire humankind in its basic moral categorization – the good and the bad. The prison can be aptly pictured to be our immediate circumstance which circumvents us – grim and grey. The prison has held captive both the good and bad alike, indifferent of any category they may fall under; we humans have become prisoners to our present situation disregarding any differences, and we have been shut in our homes confined to our own personal space with no or little interaction to the physical world outside, even those who have interactions have a spectrum of restrictions imposed on them on the grounds of safety and much more, on that of unspoken fears.
A strange world is this where we experience collective – loneliness and outspoken – silence. The stars and the mud, upon which the prisoners’ perspective differed when looking out of the window of their prison, are celestial and earthly, which made the entire difference to the same experience of prison they were undergoing at the same time.
C.S. Lewis said, and I quote –”Never, never pin your whole faith on any human being: not if he is the best and wisest in the whole world. There are lots of nice things you can do with sand; but do not try building a house on it.”
The celestial stars and earthen mud corresponds to the face of God Almighty and man in his frailty respectively. When we choose to trust in God’s protection against any harm, and when we choose to thrive on God’s providence against any loss, even be it of our loved ones – we are looking out our prison cells onto the stars. It is inevitable for any human being to avoid the reality of the earthen mud – the toils, pains, worries, strives and griefs, but the light from the celestial stars can get you through the darkest nights of your life, only if you turn your eyes to them and allow them to suffice you with their glimmer. When the ploy of men falters, the star gazers will outlive the mud dabblers!
A verse from the Bible reads so – “I will lift up my eyes to the mountains – from where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.”
The choice to see what you see can bring about brightening or frightening hue to your canvas of life. What do you choose to see, stars or mud?