dafremen Once upon a time there was a world.

Of the many special things about this world, one of the more peculiar was how it appeared to those who lived in it.

See, this world was very much like water in that wherever you looked, you could see your reflection.

Sometimes, if you knew what you were looking for, you would recognize that reflection and say, "Hey! That's not the world, that's not those other people! That's ME!"

But see, the reflection wasn't always so clear, and many of the people that lived in it were so used to believing what they thought they saw, that they didn't really know what they were seeing at all.

Now in this world, as was already mentioned, there lived some people.

They were of the ether, and truly spirits all, but since they were wrapped in a shell which was formed of the very world they lived in, they TOO appeared to be a reflection, both to those that saw them, and to themselves when they took the time to look.

SOME of the time, not very often at all, a few of these people would still their surfaces just so, and when another would come up, they could TRULY see themselves reflected there, as they were.

But that was the exception, not the rule.

More often than not, early on in their development, they would take to pushing, and poking and prodding at the surface of that reflective water, to see what it was made of, and learn more about it.

Now in a world that is made of water, it's hard to tell where the world stops and the people (spirits wrapped in world that is water) begin. It all looks the same to the casual observer.

But imagine that you're standing around, minding your own business, trying to cast a clear, clean reflection (like a lake in the wee hours of the morning, no breeze, just glassy clean) and along comes someone to poke at you (thinking they're just exploring the world.) Suddenly, there are ripples there. Suddenly, you're not glassy smooth anymore, and the reflection you cast, well, it's distorted somehow. If that happened to you, well your first reaction might be to poke right back at them!

That's what happened to this world.

The poking started innocently enough, and just kept right on going, until soon, the water was so choppy, that when the people looked at their reflection, they didn't see anything that was really true at all. Instead, what they saw, was a MONSTER staring back at them.

Now there are several ways to react when you look at your reflection and see a distorted-reflection-created monster staring back at you:

You could believe what you're seeing, and assume that you ARE a monster. That might lead you to clear yourself to do monstrous things. That IS what monsters do after all.

You might punch the reflection, lash out at it, because you couldn't possibly believe that a monster is what you are. Of course, that would just create mightier ripples, and an uglier monster would emerge from the reflection that you are looking at.

You could become very, very sad thinking that this world full of monstrous reflections of you is a terrible, terrible place. You might think that living is pointless if you're a monster. You might try to end it all.

Of course, no matter what you do, if you react to that reflection, on a world such as the one in this story, you will create more ripples. More ripples means that not only does your reflection continue to be distorted, but that more reactions come from those around that see their distorted reflection through your rippled surface.

It was a dilemma the people of this world had on their hands. Quite the dilemma indeed.

Now, if you've ever seen the surface of a perfectly glassy lake, you would also perhaps have seen the occasional zephyr skim over its surface. And if you've seen what the breeze does, you would know that the breeze makes little tiny ripples.

As long as the lake is smooth, these ripples tend to spread themselves out thin, and everything stays tranquil.

But if there is any turbulence in the water, say a wake, or a wave from something splashing, then these breezes have something to catch on. They have a surface to push on, and make bigger. It doesn't take a whole lot of wind to make a perfectly smooth lake shimmer with ripples.

Well this world had its own breezes. They were of the air. And they delighted in creating ripples that would cause the people to react.

Once the reactions had started, the people themselves would continue the chain reaction, taking the tiny ripples that the breezes made and reacting to them, until their reactions became interactions and soon, everyone was reacting in their own particular way to the monster reflections that were cast upon the world.

This went on for a very long time, until one day, a person with a lot of common sense (very much like yourself), said to themselves, "Enough! I will not continue to contribute to this madness! I am not a monster, and neither are any of these people. But for as long as I continue to react to them, they will continue to see themselves all funky and distorted and so will I! I refuse, I will not react anymore!"

Well the funniest thing happened. See, even though this person with a lot of common sense (you're reading this story, aren't you? and that's a very sensible thing to be doing, so they were probably very much like you in a way) still could only see a distorted reflection of themselves coming off of these other people, they knew that this wasn't true, so they simply stayed very still and lo and behold, the people looking at them, could see very clearly, the reflection of the ripples that they themselves were making.

The other people saw that the monstrous reflection was coming from themselves and many of them stopped reacting too so as to still the ripples in themselves.

This non-reacting approach caused its OWN chain reaction, until soon, there were only ripples where the breezes blew by, and those people that were blown on, refused to react, having learned their lesson well.

When the waters of the world had stilled, and the people had begun to see, without the distortions caused by all of the rippling, they realized that they weren't monsters at all, and neither was anyone else. They were, in fact, very much alike to one another, and very beautiful indeed.

Once they'd realized how much they had in common, how alike they truly were and how beautiful they all appeared, well of course, they went back to poking and prodding and pushing at the world around them, because that's what people do.

But they'd learned not to react, and so they could explore one another's differences, without creating ripples and it was a very beautiful thing.

See the differences were important to explore, but until they had learned of the common bond they shared, until they had agreed to respect and love one another, those differences could not be explored without (more often than not) creating misunderstandings, arguments, in short, without creating ripples.

To explore our differences, we must FIRST learn to agree, explore our similarities and avoid the differences for a time.

Then a bond will grow, of understanding, respect and love between us, that will forgo our tendency to ripple.

This is the bond of family, it is the bond of marriage, it is the bond of TRUE friendship. It is the bond of love that keeps these units together through even the worst of brawls.

It is a pleasure to know you all. You're most beautiful, a treasure each and every one of you.

Love to you and a wish for you to know the peace found at that tranquil lake somewhere. It is your birthright and the truest reflection of what you are.
deathofarose . 041208
tombe_seul see what that little pebble did.
disrupted and confused
Syrope einsteins_dreams esque 041210
stork daddy in your attempts, i see my own attempts.

certainly makes for good surfing though.
sameolme . 041210
skippydoodaday everything comes in waves. 050424
andru235 imagine what fission does, then!

. an' the huntin' an' the shootin' 050425
They call me Truth Love, it is and will always be the curer of all ailments, inside and out. 080603
hsg Now you can learn to surf the ripples knowingly and willingly or you can become draggled across the universe.

question: Are you the clown who knowshe's a clown or the one_who_does_not
what's it to you?
who go