Copyright © 2014 by Ralph F. Couey
both image and written content.
The ocean draws me; inspires me. Heals me. To stand on the shore of a continent and gaze out to sea is to experience humility. And infinity.
Our planet is mostly water. So are we, for that matter. The life that evolved to be us arose from the oceans, and even today salt water flows through us. So it's perhaps not surprising that the allure comes from so deep inside of us.
The sounds of the sea inspire deep thought, or no thought at all, as the mind surrenders to the peace of one's soul. I don't know anything that is more peaceful than the rhythmic beat of the surf. An impulse, generated thousands of miles distant begins to rise as it approaches the shore. At a certain point the wave curls forward and the water falls to the sand with a sort of muffled "boom." Afterwards comes the hissing of the foam as it races across the sand, loses momentum, and slides back. The sound is soothing, the sight hypnotic. And it is endless. To listen to that steady beat is to feel release. All the sadness and anger, the burdens of life are released and replaced by a sense of balance; of peace.
At no time are one's emotions so touched as at sunset. The shadows lengthen and the light, filtered through the horizon, changes to a softer, more contemplative tint. The clouds along that horizon begin to pick up and reflect the sun's rays, turning them from white to burnished gold. On a calm day, that beautiful light is mirrored by the surface of the sea, and the whole world takes on a scintillating beauty found nowhere else.
It is a time and a place for reflection. People seek these moments when answers to difficult questions remain elusive. It is here that those answers reveal themselves, as gentle in their arrival as the soft breeze on velvety summer's night.
Eventually, we must turn away and return to the noisome clamor of our lives. We go, however, renewed and refreshed; imbued with a new sense of possibility. And submersed in a new serenity.
For it is in the murmur of the sea where we shall find the peace we seek.