An Exquisitely Special Story
Somewhere in the unimaginable vastness of the cosmos lives a beautiful spiral galaxy. Even with billions of galaxies, there is one that some say is exquisitely special. Some know her as “Milky Way.” The wide embracing arms of the galaxy sweep majestically in the same direction around the blinding black hole at its center. Even while rotating like a colossal pinwheel, the galaxy as a whole moves through vast space.
Among billions of stars in the galaxy, in the outskirts of one of its sweeping arms, there lives a star that some say is exquisitely special. Some know him as “Sun.”
As this star circles around the galaxy along with its brother stars in its spiral arm, and as the galaxy itself moves through vast space, a family of planets encircles this star. Each in its own orbit, the planets swing around the star, all in the same direction, although on different planes and at different distances from the blazing source of light and heat at their common center. Some say that one of these planets is exquisitely special. Some call her “Earth” or “Gaia.”
As this planet itself rotates on an imaginary axis, encircling its star, which swings around the galaxy, which moves through vast space, after two billion years there emerge from the dance of light, water, gravity, air, and heat exquisitely special phenomena. Some call these phenomena “living beings.”
After another two billion years (and only two hundred thousand years from today), and after the emergence, transformation, and passing away of unimaginable numbers of living beings, there appeared an exquisitely special creature. Some call them “human beings” or “people.”
These creatures woke up, stood up, looked around, and named everything they saw or could think of. They named themselves “human beings,” and they named other creatures “living beings,” “Earth,” “Sun,” “Milky Way,” and “cosmos.” And in so doing, the human beings shook with awe and experienced fear and fascination with all things that were indeed exquisitely special. And they named the mysterious power that is in the midst of and behind all things and that brings all things into being and takes all things out of being—“God,” “Goddess,” “Great Spirit,” “Allah,” “Buddha-nature,” “Son of God,” “Holy Spirit,” “Shiva,” and many other wonderful names.
And thus, the exquisitely special work of these humans is to cherish every other human and every other creature, whether big or small, whether near or far; every planet, star, and galaxy; and the vast cosmos itself as holy and filled with awe and light and warmth and worthy of being exquisitely special.
(Note: The above is from my book A Compassionate Civilization (https://www.amazon.com/dp/1546972617) , pages 151 - 153. It is available online and from local bookshops.)