On this day in a week begun with celebrating stars that guide through the darkness, I am intrigued by the relationship between light and dark and sight. And so I google! Doesn’t everyone? And I found what’s below on http://www.physicsclassroom.com
“The bottom line is: without light, there would be no sight. The visual ability of humans and other animals is the result of the complex interaction of light, eyes and brain. We are able to see because light from an object can move through space and reach our eyes. Once light reaches our eyes, signals are sent to our brain, and our brain deciphers the information in order to detect the appearance, location and movement of the objects we are sighting at. The whole process, as complex as it is, would not be possible if it were not for the presence of light. Without light, there would be no sight.”
We humans need light to guide us. We need light in order to cue our eyes and brain to see. It is light which makes perception possible.
Perhaps this is obvious? I do not think so. We focus, of course, on what we bring in bodily equipment and our choice to open our eyes! But light precedes us. It even invites our bodies and our hearts to open. And is that not an apt thought as we wander round Epiphany?
The Light, the Word, the One precedes us always. Without this Light, there is no chance to see, no resulting experiments and play our brain can make, no creating of our own with shades and color.
It is the Star that speaks to the magi. It precedes them, and leads them to an unlikely end – a manger, a family, a vulnerability that would not have been the human dream to match their hopes.
The Magi had one only star to follow,
a single sanctuary lamp hung low,
gold ornament in the astonished air.
I am confounded in this latter day;
I find stars everywhere.
Rumor locates the presence of a night
out past the loss of perishable sun
where, round midnight, I shall come to see
that all the stars are one.
I long for this night of the onement of the stars
when days of scattered shining are my lot
and my confusion. Yet faith even here
burns her throat dry, cries: on this very spot
of mornings, see, there is not any place
where the sought Word is not.
Under and over, in and out this morn
flawlessly, purely, wakes the newly born.
Behold, all places which have light in them
truly are Bethlehem.
Jessica Powers, 1964
There is SO MUCH light – an excess, and stars everywhere to guide us. There is “not any place where the sought Word is not”.
In Psalm 119:105 we read that the Word is a lamp for our feet, a light for our path. May we rejoice in the excess of this person who is Love, expressed in Light, that helps us see where we stand and guides us forward. If we manage to wake now and then to what is all around us, we will be dazzled by the amount of light with us, within us, within each other. Just remember that waking to it does not necessarily mean that you or I feel it, anymore than I feel the molecules of the air. See what the light creates in you, in others… what growth, what we see because of it, what life emerges. The very looking for the Light is Light’s own gift. Trust the process. There are stars everywhere for us to find.
Blessed Light! May we let its truth reach into every corner of our hearts, our relationships, our world.