7 Great Perspectives Inspired from 7 Lesser Known Facts About The Grand Canyon
The Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona, USA is one of the seven natural wonders of the world and I was fortunate to get an opportunity to view this majestic landscape from where 90% of visitors choose to view it – the scenic South Rim.
Its heavily layered reds, rusts, and oranges scream stories of human exploration, preservation and exploitation.
And yet, the strata of buff and grey, delicate green and pink, or, in its depths, brown, slate-grey, and violet, and the park's spires and buttes leave you curious about the what, why and how of this canyon’s being.
The experience of arriving at the rim’s edge and soaking in your eyes this immensely gigantic, deep and illuminated creation is beyond explanation. And yet, I am making this failed attempt to pen down my point of view.
With the cold wind blowing on my face, the overwhelming light blinding my eyes and the height of 8000 feet racing my heartbeat, these sublime vistas evoked the below 7 perspectives in my mind as I traversed its circumference on one fine evening.
1. The Power to Persist is a Great Substitute to Power
We are told that the canyon is the result of millions of years of constant erosion by the Colorado River, which flows through the canyon and touches seven states. This structure looks nothing less than a big hole in the ground and upon learning about the mystery of its formation, I was forced to realize the strength of water. Like the pen is mightier than the sword, water is mightier than the stone.
Water is so soft and fluid and yet it has the power to wash away earth, put out any fire, and even destroy iron. But, the water flowing in a river cuts through the rigid and unyielding rock not because of its power, but because of persistence.
The Grand Canyon is due to the power or persistence. The power to persist guarantees the inevitable. The power to persist is your greatest power.
2. Beauty is Ageless
Like you never ask a girl her age, don’t ever ask the age of the Grand Canyon. No one knows how old it is. This canyon is a living example of a geological phenomenon called the “Great Unconformity” wherein we’re missing 950 million years’ worth of rocks. What happened during hundreds of millions of years between the young, and only 250 million-year-old rock strata and, the 1.2 billion-year-old great grandfather rocks is a unknown.
What is known though, is that age is only a number and beauty is indeed, ageless. The wrinkles of colored strata mean the canyon has laughed, the grey in its depth means it has cared and the scars left by the river cutting its surface mean that it has lived!
And that is what adds to its glamour, grandeur and gorgeousness.
3. Create Your Own Calm
The Grand Canyon is living life king size. Meaning, on its own terms and conditions. It is known to create its own weather and one could experience anything ranging from the wet and cold wind to the hot and dry sun depending upon where you are in the canyon. And you must travel across the canyon’s length and breadth to find your own suited weather!
Similarly, some of us take comfort in the coziness in the snow while others enjoy the smell of wet rains, and then there are few who bathe in the brightness of sunny days. And in life’s journey too, we must keep moving, keep traveling until we find and create our own calm.
4. First, Best or Different?
Even though so much has been spoken about the Grand Canyon National park’s creation and beauty it is not the deepest canyon in the world. Yes, the moment you arrive at any of its rim, or get an even better aerial view from a helicopter, you think you’ve seen the best that this world has to offer!
But something better than the best always exists. In fact, the Grand Canyon is not so grand. It is ranked 4th after the deepest one being in Tibet, China and two other in Peru, South America. Also, The, specific geologic processes and timing that formed these canyons spark lively debates among geologists. Hence, it may not even be the oldest.
This is a gentle reminder that the battle is never between being first or the best. It is about being different in a better way! You must do the best you can until you know better. Then, when you know better, do better.
5. Your vibe attracts your tribe
Now, call it a clan, or your inner circle. Call it a network, or your social group. Or call it a tribe. We can choose to call it what we like, but we all need one.
Even though we live in a wired world, it is still very hard to find your tribe. We tiptoe around restlessly in search of the ones who make us feel comfortable, confident and complete.
And on the other hand, we have 277 miles of the Colorado River flowing within the Grand Canyon and housing only eight fish species that are native to the canyon, six of which are found nowhere outside of the Colorado River. If they are not convinced of their company, where do they go to find their tribe?
I think, the tribe is where the vibe is. The only way to attract “your people” is to be yourself. Also, make sure you radiate the positive ones so that the right kind of energy flows back in your direction.
6. Life is Eternal
The Earth is over 4.5 billion years old and the only planet to harbor life. The first form of life came into being on our planet 3.5 billion years ago. The dinosaurs came to rule the Earth after the Great Dying that occurred 250 million years ago.
Apparently, the Grand Canyon is even more ancient than the dinosaurs. It has been there, seen that. It has seen life that is eternal. When asked, most people promptly respond that the opposite of life is death. That’s not true! Life has no opposite. The Grand Canyon is a witness to those earth-shattering events that testify the point that opposite of death is birth. Birth in another form, shape and time. We are eternal beings and new beginnings is our destiny.
7. Simplicity is Not a Simple Thing
Not many people know, but inside a 3,000-foot-deep hole in the Grand Canyon there is a small town called the Supai village within the Havasupai Indian Reservation.
It is extremely remote and home to approximately 200 people. Till date, this village remains inaccessible by road such that their mail and other daily supplies are being delivered by pack mule. After a long ride down, Havasu Creek, a crystal-clear, turquoise stream one finally approaches the simple yet sophisticated Supai village, an oasis in the desert. Its inhabitants are called "Havasupai" meaning people of the blue-green waters, an American India tribe that lived in the Grand Canyon for several hundred years.
Sounds hard, right? Life is hard only when you make it hard. Similarly, simple is also not so simple. It is a puzzle of complexities. So what should one do? I'd say, always go for simplicity because it’s worth it. If nothing else, at least simple sounds simple ;-).
Have you been to any such place that has evoked so many perspectives in you? Have you ever returned from any place more enlightened? I'd love to hear stories about your most inspiring places & perspectives!