While walking the beach of Siesta Key, I’ve seen many, many seashells. It’s amazing how many wash up on the beach. Mostly what I think about when I see them is how much they hurt the soles of my feet. Sometimes a particularly beautiful one will catch my eye, though. I’ll pick it up and examine it. What creature lived in here?
Shells are essentially exoskeletons of various kinds of sea animals. It’s amazing to think of all the life that came and passed through those shells. Thousands and thousands of shells on the beach means thousands and thousands of lives that have gone.
In Epictetus’ Handbook there is a philosophy of anything a person loses, or any life that ceases to live, is given back to the universe. Seashells are a perfect demonstration of this idea. The life has passed, but the shell is given back to the universe. It’s washed up on the shore, where two worlds converge: land and sea. It’s something new now, not a home for a little critter, but a beautiful artifact of the sea.
Each shell is a part of the collection of lives, which make up the entire force of life. When these shells are eroded by the waves, they become sand. Every grain of sand, which is unique from every other one, has a back-story. It came from life, the life passed, and then it was worn down into almost nothing. But, it is not nothing, for it has a part in the universe of sand that makes up the beach. Sand is the best representation of the force which binds all living creatures.
It’s trippy stuff, I’m telling you.
It’s Two Way Hump Day and it’s an exciting one. I want us to keep this concept of shells, sand, and life in mind with the discussion today. My Two Way Hump Day question is more of a writing prompt.
Think of a shell that you have collected from the beach or have received from someone or bought or whatever else. What’s its back-story? Where’d it come from? What life inhabited it?
Run wild with this one. Reply below, write your own post and tag it Two Way Hump Day, or tweet @oshitbritt.
photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/hollyclark/875753044/”>OrangeCounty_Girl</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/”>cc</a>