Stories for the Soul

To Resolve a Conflict

It was Jupiter who noticed the chatter first. He was just out there, minding his own business when the noise of incessant chatter fell upon his hearing. In the beginning, Jupiter tried his best to ignore the noise. But like I said, the chattering was incessant and began to take its toll on his mental well-being. That was how Jupiter turned around to notice the going-ons.

Even before he turned around, Jupiter knew who the chatterers were. It was always them, the two ladies in the group – the mother and the daughter, who were the big-talkers. They either got along like wild fire or did not get along like wild fire. Today, it looked as if they were not getting along.

Jupiter noticed both of them from his position. Because of his size, he was able to get a good view even though the mother and daughter were quite far away from him. He looked at the mother, first. It was hard to miss her, on account of her size and especially on account of all the cooking that she did. Of course, it was all that cooking that kept the entire family in working condition.

The daughter was a small one, the youngest, tiniest, and the boldest of the lot. Obviously, she was able to garner the attention of the mother more often and more effectively than the rest of the them did. And she achieved it because of her speed.

The speed at which she moved was pretty incredible indeed. What with all the spinning and revolving at the same time, she moved around like lightning and thunder coming on at the same time. Jupiter would know. He created so much lightning and thunder that he could almost create another Jupiter if only he could figure out how to.

That was what he was working on until the mother-daughter argument turned him away from more important matters. He listened hard to understand the reason for conflict. And as usual, it was all about speed.

“You,” began the daughter accusing the mother, for what could have been the infinite time, if Jupiter had not kept count of it. “You are moving way too slowly! If only you could speed it up a bit, you would be able to keep up with me, and not scorch me like you are doing now.”

“Listen, young lady!” began the mother. “I am way, way, bigger than you are. And I have been around for way, way longer than you have been. So, excuse me if my old bones are not able to match up to your speed.”

The daughter shot back. “That is no reason to pick on me so frequently.”

“Why shouldn’t I? You are moving so fast that you hardly ever notice anything or anyone around. And what is the need to spin so much around yourself?! You would have fallen off your orbit already if it weren’t for me, keeping you in your place.”

“And what if I don’t want to be kept in my place?” argued the daughter.

“Anything that is not in its place is also something that will get lost. I am only ensuring that you don’t get lost,” replied the mother.

“How do you know that I cannot find my way back? Everything that is lost, is also something that can be found, you know,” said the wise, old daughter.

Jupiter could see that the mother could not contain her smile at how well the daughter was keeping pace with her through her own wise-cracks. But Jupiter also saw something else. It was the little one caught between the mother and the daughter. The little one was so caught in the banter between the two that he took to hiding and surfacing every now and then. Then, there were the times when he did not show up at all.

But Jupiter knew about this kid. The kid was not in hiding. He was always around. It was just that the mother and daughter were so caught up in their conversations about each other’s speed that they sometimes failed to notice his presence.

Jupiter felt that it was time to intervene. He had had enough of the two and wanted to get back to his work on creating another Jupiter. So, he shot out a few messages from where he was, hoping that it would make sense to the mother-daughter duo.

“Dear Earth,” he began, addressing the daughter. “You are quite the speedster, indeed. But have you noticed that in your speed, you are not noticing anything else. Have you noticed how tired you are beginning to get? Your speed has put a strain on your energy levels. Have you noticed that you have not had a bath in a while? There is quite the amount of dust piled upon you through your movement. And have you not noticed the little kid circling around you, waiting for you to pay attention to him? Your speed maybe exciting for you, but have you noticed that it has begun to hurt you and others?”

The next message was shot out to the mother. “Hey mom, how are you? I can never thank you enough for being here for us. But have you noticed that even as you are moving around, you also moving around the same place? You are expanding quite loud and bright, right from your place. Have you noticed how much you have intruded into our space without even trying to? You are not only burning us up, but have begun to burn up a dark hole into your own space too. Your speed maybe right for you, but have you noticed that it has begun to hurt you and others?”

Having shot off the messages, Jupiter waited, wondering if the two of them, by noticing each other, would have noticed themselves too. As the chatter died down into a peaceful silence, Jupiter got his answer, and got back to working on himself.

Dear Reader,

We are a world constantly noticing the rest of the world. If we are not opening windows to look at the rest of the universe, we are opening windows to look at each other. We are trying to point fingers at others and trying to fix others’ problems. But have we noticed the finger that is pointing towards others is also carrying a connection back into ourselves. The nerve that helps us point fingers is also a nerve that lies within, and its connection heads right back within.

The heat of the sun gets us all worked up. We end up pointing fingers at the sun, and damning the giant for her unwanted intrusion. But have we given a thought to the fact that it was we, who destroyed the protective layer around us, and let the sun intrude into our personal space, in the first place? Have we noticed that it was we, who succumbed to the temptation of the social media, and allowed the invasion of privacy in the first place? Have we noticed that in our effort to satisfy our wants, we have lost sight of the child who wants to connect with us? And have we noticed that in our effort to connect with the rest of the world, we have lost our connection with ourselves?

Besides, have we noticed that the universe, for as big as it maybe, is also just as silent. We are the only ones making all the noise.

When we listen to our emotions in the right way, we will notice that it is only directing us towards ourselves. If you are feeling sorry for the old woman around you, it also means that you are feeling sorry for the old woman you will become in the future. And if you are feeling sorry for the child around you, it also means that you are feeling sorry for your inner child that lies suppressed within.

The finger that points outside is, in reality, only leading us towards enabling change from within.

We are the universe looking right back at ourselves. Here’s to noticing Us!

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