For the past three hours I lay asleep upon my green leather couch beneath a light blanket with an eye mask on. Gone is the afternoon! I have at least the dignity of knowing that when I said, “I’m tired” it was no idyll conviction. The midday nap is not normally on my list of activity and certainly not to this extent; but I confess the little of it I know I like. I am energized by noticeable zeal! Whatever it is that sleep does, it did it to me! I am now primed to organize the universe.
Lest one is straight away gripped by the drollness of organizing the universe, may I remind you that as Anatole France once so wittingly remarked of his childhood, “Moi, je suis le centre du monde“. We all are the centre of the universe if for no other reason than that everything we see revolves about us, sometimes physically, other times psychologically and most certainly spiritually. Descartes and Hume struggled for years to legitimize knowledge by its source; and in the end they concluded it’s either from within or without but in either case they’re the centre of it.
Accordingly it is a relatively small compliment to undertake organization of the universe. To a degree the complexity of the matter depends upon the incertitude revolving within one’s head. This is a critical feature since to know the answer is first to know the question. I view my life experience as uncertain to the extent that I have not appropriately assembled the constituents of the sensation. It is the difference between a tree and a poem of a tree; namely, the blunt facts or the poetic manifestation. This is not to suggest that an imaginative expression is required but rather to illustrate that rhythm and verse can indeed be rhapsodic. Nor is adjudicating a systematic order purely a matter of engineering. It’s about knocking things into place.
There are two elements which immediately overtake me when putting my life in order. First, the variance of the road down which one travels doesn’t for a minute alter the vogageur’s singularity. Second, nothing absolutely nothing we can ever do will change who we are. This means that everything about our universe depends on us. So while the scope of the enterprise may at first appear vast and immeasurable it is in fact quite the opposite although spirited by one’s inner nature and personal dynamics. It is important to understand that what happens to us is us; one cannot separate one’s self from one’s universe – they’re one and the same. To do otherwise is to attach blame or absolution, neither of which captures a more perfect analysis since either way it essentially acknowledges external manipulation rather than simple affirmation.
Further there is one paramount necessity before embarking upon a review of one’s universe; and that is to settle whether to accept the outcome or not. It is not a selective choice other than in the broadest of terms. There cannot be any qualification; otherwise the object is instantly defeated. It is difficult to inspire organization if there is no purpose. Acceptance is in that respect the lubrication of our passage throughout life, the fluid upon which we wend our way along.
Many of us have been blessed to enjoy life’s fortuity; but some have not. Yet there is no one who hasn’t difficulties which obstruct their passage. Being alive to those discombobulations is to recognize the flavour of life, not only the sweet rosemary but also the bitter pepper. If the roadside weed can fulfill its destiny amidst an uncultivated soil then the garden flower – though no more entitled – has a similar opportunity.
There is a matter I failed to address at the outset and for this I most truly apologize. It is this: Why organize the universe? It may appear to be a redundant enquiry given the analysis already shared; namely, 1) life is how we see it; 2) life can be a free instrumental composition or an epic poem; 3) the universe is ultimately personal and there’s no escaping it; 4) we can choose to celebrate life or not; and, 5) being thankful is the result of decision not chance. These are but distillations of the entirety of the universe. The truthfulness is no more or less compelling than a weather report. The personal allure of organizing the universe is assortment of life’s interjections into a complete and visible puzzle, an accommodation which at once clarifies the whole while maintaining the integrity of the parts. The pieces do in fact fit together!