The implications of this theory are far-reaching. We can never know the varied and layered effects of the choices we make in a given moment.
Thich Nhat Hanh, the Vietnamese Buddhist monk, writer, and educator, uses another example to illustrate this idea: a lit candle. A candle burns in a vertical direction, beginning as a long taper and finishing as spent wax. However, this candle burns horizontally as well, as heat and light expand outward into the world.
are like that candle. Certainly, our lives move in a linear fashion. We are born, mature, age, and die. But at the same time, we shine outward as well. We offer to our surroundings our thoughts and feelings, each action we take, and every kind or harsh word we speak.
This perspective comes with a responsibility to act honorably. While unseen good may, indeed, result from our shortcomings, by consciously and openly admitting an error, we send a precious gift into our world.
May our blossoms be bounteous and beautiful, and our fruit soulfully sweet.