I was watching a spider spin its web, admiring the intricacy and the precision going into its design.
It started with a single thread, forming the basis of the rest of the structure. From there, the spider released a looser thread underneath the first, attaching it at both ends before climbing to its center. From the second thread, she lowered herself down on a vertical thread to form a Y-shape. It formed the core support structure of the entire web.
With anchored threads in place, the spider laid out threads from the center, creating a starburst effect within the frame of the web. From there, she spun a spiral extending from the center of the web to its outer edges. She made her design efforts look so easy. When she finished, she rested.
What a beautiful, elegant trap, all according to the instructional manual preprogrammed into its little brain.
Everything connected in this little spider universe.
A vibration on one tiny strand reverberates through all the other strands so that all are affected.
What about the web of connections in our own lives?
I can appreciate the Native American myth of Spider Woman, the Mother Goddess who created all life. Using her magical thread, she connects all human, animal, and plant life together in the intricate web of life. She teaches us to honor those connections.
However, there may be times when we feel that we are disconnected from our world. What we do doesn’t seem to be of any value or of any major consequence. This is a trap set by our own mind.
We are all bound by an invisible connection. Just because we can’t physically see it with our eyes doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. Our thoughts and deeds, the decisions we make each day, how we see and relate to the world, can have a profound impact on people and environments that seem entirely separate from our personal realm of existence.
Being conscious of the interconnection between all things helps us to see our choices in terms of the broader effect we may be creating. There are times when we see the immediate result of our words and deeds; but there are many more of which we are not aware.
As a teacher, I rarely hear about the influence I had on my students. But there have been times when years later a student emails me a note of thanks for recognizing a special talent that he or she now uses to help others.
With the New Year upon us, may we take the time to recognize and remember our connections with all things. What impact will our actions and our words have? What can we do or say to bring about a positive impact on others and our environments?
Recognizing that we are intimately connected with all things and understanding the power that we have to affect all that is around us and beyond can be the first step on the path of living consciously.
We’ll never know whose lives we’ll touch in the great web of life.