Last week, I wrote about my time in Alaska’s Inside Passage during the month of July and the profound impact I experienced from the sheer vastness of the wilderness, the enormous scale of the mountains and cliffs, and the powerful presence of the eagles and whales.
This week, I write about what being surrounded by glaciers and icebergs taught me about the hidden nature of our realities.
On the sixth day of our trip, the captain of our small ship navigated through Russell Fjord into Disenchantment Bay to reach the Hubbard Glacier, North America’s largest tidewater glacier. According to the National Park Service, Hubbard Glacier is 76 miles long, seven miles wide, and 600 feet tall at its termination face. Nearly half of that height is under water and therefore not visible. Furthermore, in some places, the glacier ice is over 2,000 feet thick.
The weather gods were good to us that day, allowing us to get very close to the glacier. At one point, it felt like we were just several hundred feet from the massive face, yet our guide told us we were still one and a half miles away. The huge scale of the mountains and glacier completely skewed all sense of distance and space. It seemed unfathomable that the wall of ice in front of us was hundreds of feet high and seven miles wide!
Icebergs floated all around. On the surface they appeared as large ice cubes floating in the bay, yet what we could see of each “ice cube” was actually only ten percent of its full size. The other ninety percent was hidden beneath the surface of the water. Again, reality was different than what we could see.
As I stood on the bow of the ship in Disenchantment Bay looking at Hubbard Glacier and so many icebergs, I saw more metaphors for life. First, what we can actually see on the surface is often only a small part of a much larger reality. There are always “unknowns.” We can choose to be afraid of the unknown and run away from it, or we can be curious and engage our intuitive mind to sense what else may be there. There may indeed be danger lurking in what is hidden, yet the Principle of Polarity tells us that nothing can exist without its opposite also being present. So if there is danger, there is also opportunity. There is always a greater potential waiting to unfold. Our job is to pay attention, look for that hidden potential, and let it show us the way forward.
The captain of our small ship had years of experience navigating waters that may hold surprises. He knew how to sense the openings and steer the ship between the large pieces of floating ice. In fact, on this particular day he was able to take the ship closer to the glacier than he had all season. He chose to look for the open spaces rather than be chased away by the floating obstacles.
We, too, can practice navigating unknown territory. We can develop our Seer and Explorer skills and learn to follow our intuitive senses. We can learn to follow the signals and trust that they will show us where to go and what to do, even when we may only be able to sense one step at a time. Such is the nature of life in these rapidly changing times.
We were also lucky to witness Hubbard Glacier “calve” – to see large pieces of ice break off and cascade down into the water. The sound was incredible, even from more than a mile away. As the glacier “advances,” what has been hidden under layers of ice eventually comes to the edge and breaks away. The icebergs all around us had at one time been buried deep within the glacier.
While the glacier appears to be standing still, it is, in reality, constantly moving. Again, a metaphor. The fundamental principle of the universe is that everything is energy in motion. Everything is part of a larger unfolding process. Nothing exists in isolation. Nothing is ever standing still. There is always movement. While we may feel stuck in circumstances or situations, there is, in fact, still movement. Having that knowledge can allow us to look beneath the surface to find the movement, even if in the moment that movement seems imperceptible. Finding the movement will show us the direction of potential. It can give us hints about what wants to happen. And in those moments when we can’t find the movement, chances are we are being given a message to pause and trust that a shift is indeed happening. The Principle of Gestation tells us that things come in their own time. We just have to give the shift the time it needs.
What is on the surface is never the whole story. We get into trouble when we make decisions or take actions based on assumptions without looking beyond the obvious or beneath the surface. Understanding some basic principles of how life works, such as the Principles of Polarity and Gestation, can help. And recognizing that everything is a part of a larger unfolding process, even when it appears to be stuck, can help us navigate life’s challenges and opportunities.
P.S. To learn more about the Principles of Polarity and Gestation and other fundamental principles for how life works, see Chapter 11 of my latest book, Create A World That Works, can be a great place to start. The book is also available in digital format.
If you enjoyed this blog post and found it helpful or inspiring, I invite you to subscribe to our free weekly newsletter by clicking here.