What Time Is It?

I was browsing through some different free photos online, trying to see if something would prompt a blog post. I wasn’t sure what to write about this week. I’m still not sure where this post will end up. Let’s see, shall we?

I stumbled over this image, and I found my gaze kept returning to it. The website says it’s a stock photo of a sunset. But could it be a sunrise?

I think that’s why it drew my attention. It’s a photo of the sun low on the horizon, that we can say with certainty. But that’s all we actually know. (Unless we’re the photographer.)

It could be a sunset: a day ending, dying, sliding into the intrigues of night.

It could be a sunrise: the sun coming up, a new day, a fresh beginning.

Sunset, when the nocturnal animals come out. When the rhythms change, the landscape cools, and diurnal animals head for shelter.

Sunrise, when the nocturnal animals seek their dens, hiding from the day’s brightness, its dangers, and its hustle and bustle. When diurnal animals feel safer. When things no longer go bump in the night.

The cycle of day to night to day has its own rhythms. Its own beauty. Each is a new beginning, but it’s also an ending.

I don’t think many of us think of nighttime as a new beginning, but it is. And we don’t often think of sunrise as an ending point, but that’s because of our own diurnal biases.

Perspective. Point of view. So much of what we think, how we interact with others, how we view the world is filtered through our own points of view. Our biases. Our habit of centering ourselves in every interaction.

When we step out of the center and look at the scene from a different angle, our world can shift.

What could you learn if you decided to center someone else’s perspective today? If you decided to see every interaction from the point of view of the person you’re speaking to instead of your own?

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