Saturday, May 24, 2008

The Music of Eternity...

"And I can hear naught but the music of eternity."
--epitaph, found in a local cemetery


I took a walk through one of the most beautiful cemeteries in my city, which dates back to the late 1800's. I knew it would bring me back to the one fundamental reality of this life, the only thing each of us knows for certain: one day, we will die. And I was thinking about this week's events and the comments and the ideas and the beliefs we all carry around with us, and I looked up, thinking that if stars could, they would laugh at our daily debates, our musings and our questions.

At the entrance to the cemetery there is a very large tree with an incredibly wide trunk. I went over and stood under it. I leaned my cheek against its bark and pressed my ear to it's skin. I could hear forever. It was vast and silent, the music of eternity.

I looked up and felt the red of the leaves cast a glow down on my face. And I looked down at what I could see of the tree's roots. It is amazing to me that the tree I see goes off in both directions. Sometimes, what lies beneath the ground spreads farther than anything that reaches towards the sun.

tall penguin

6 comments:

matt said...

It is is my dream and goal to find a way out of this supposed absolute truth. Our entire body dies in a few months, the only thing keeping us alive is our regenerative abilities within our cells. What changes? Surely it's not something that can be unchanged.

Now, whether or not it can happen, I do not know, but I go through the academia hoops in hope to be there when it happens, or make it happen. -- I want to do away with death. Misguided God-like goals aren't that bad are they?

I believe it brings up all kinds of morals and ethics which still battle within my head, but it does have to do with my ideas on brain to computer interfaces, among other more biological means. :)

The stars are not laughing; the stars are trying their hardest to make us look at their brilliance, and the knowledge they hide. I only wonder what the many other worlds ponder, muse, and debate. :)

The tree is just like the stars, it's on a timescale we can't even imagine. It too is hiding the very knowledge that will end up changing our very existence many times over.

Beautiful muse!

Elessa said...

i too love going to cemeteries to walk. i have done it since i was a kid and had to pass by one on my was to middle school.

for me when i cross the threshold from the street into a cemetery it is as though i have stepped into an alternate space. there is silence. the noise of the reality outside seems muted to me.

i have wandered cemeteries in the united states, canada and the UK. i marvel at the stones and the stories they tell.

there was a tree in a cemetery in southern ohio which must have been a sapling at the time narcissa jerusha rose was buried in the 1800s. i will never forget her name it is so unusual. the tree had grown to engulf the headstone in its embrace. i took a black and white picture of it lo those many years ago.

as for your earlier musing about the debates between atheists and creationists and religious believers, they all tend to forget the truth of that fundamental reality of death for all, no matter what they believe.

hang in there. listen to the trees. they have much to teach.

mememe said...

hi penguin..long time since i checked ur blog...

hey i think i just love the way you write and most of the times..i agree with you.....everything has a story to tell....sometimes i see an old tree or for that matter a pebble on the roadsode..a pebble on the wayside....i cant help wondering how it would be like to be a standing testimony to the changes all over....

and well...the death thing.."ultimate truth'...may be thats what makes every day n every moment that much interesting!!..aint it?

tall penguin said...

"It is is my dream and goal to find a way out of this supposed absolute truth. Our entire body dies in a few months, the only thing keeping us alive is our regenerative abilities within our cells."

I must admit to having a little jw flashback there. I like death. It feels right to me somehow. Even as a jw, I was always uncomfortable with the idea of living forever. Everything I knew had an end. It's what makes life beautiful. It makes us cherish what we have in the now.

"The stars are not laughing; the stars are trying their hardest to make us look at their brilliance, and the knowledge they hide."

:) I like this idea a lot. Thank you.

tall penguin said...

elessa,

Welcome.

"i have wandered cemeteries in the united states, canada and the UK. i marvel at the stones and the stories they tell."

Yes, the stories are incredible. It's amazing how much can be summed up in an epitaph. Sure puts things into perspective.

"narcissa jerusha rose"

I got shivers reading that name. It's powerful.

"hang in there. listen to the trees. they have much to teach."

Yes, I like trees. There is one right outside my apartment window. It gives me strength each day. I stare into it and am inspired.

tall penguin said...

Hello dear ashok, I was wondering what happened to you these days. I missed your comments. How are things in Mumbai these days?

"i cant help wondering how it would be like to be a standing testimony to the changes all over...."

I like this idea of being a standing testimony. We may not be around as long as the trees or stones, but I think each day of our lives is a testimony to the great wonder that is.