Daily Insight from the Story of The Little Prince

How greatly do you suppose the world, the country you live in, or even your local community values you?

We like to live in the illusion that we are important to others, perhaps even almost indispensable.

The other evening I watched a movie about Sir Winston Churchill, whose destiny it was to take the Western world through World War II and keep us from the Nazi jackboot.

Into the Storm contrasts how unique Churchill was, how specially prepared for the task of leading in the war years, with how in the election that followed victory the British public rejected him as prime minister.

Grateful though the British were for the enormous service Churchill rendered not just his country but also the entire free world, they simultaneously recognized that his brand of leadership would not work in post-war Britain.

So it was that he who was victorious in war against a foreign enemy was defeated in peacetime by his own people. His moment of significant was fleeting—yes, even the great Sir Winston Churchill, hero of the biggest and most deadly war the world has ever witnessed.

The reality is that we shall all pass from the world stage almost as if we had never been. If we are famous and mourned, it will not be for long. Soon, if we are remembered at all, we will be a mere name in the annals of history.

When I walk the South Mountain range around Phoenix, which I do several times a week for an hour or so at a time, I find it almost impossible to believe that these very mountains that appear so fixed and unmovable will soon be grains of sand—the same sand that forms the desert floor and the beach we so love to play on as children.

Given the fleeting nature of even the very great, we might be tempted to imagine that because life is so transitory, individuals really don’t matter all that much. Yet the discussion between the Little Prince and his pilot friend over why certain flowers have thorns assures us of just the opposite.

The Little Prince knows a flower that he believes is unique in the whole universe, which grows only on his planet, and that is incredibly precious to him.

Yet a sheep, peacefully munching away as it quietly does its own thing, could inadvertently destroy this flower with a single chomp of its jaw and not even notice that it had done so.

Where, then, does our significance lie? What’s the source of our value if we are here today and gone tomorrow?

For the Little Prince the answer lies not just in the flower itself but in the connection he has formed with her.

We have been seeing in this story the importance of our individuality. To be who we uniquely are, instead of conforming to the point we melt into the masses, is one of the foremost challenges of life.

But to be who we are isn’t an isolated endeavor. Rather, self-differentiation comes about only in the context of our fellow humans, our fellow creatures on this planet, and the Earth itself.

As the Little Prince gazes at the night sky and sees a myriad of stars, he realizes that on one of those stars is his flower. It’s this knowledge that makes the whole of the heavens seem so very special.

Were a sheep to get loose on his home turf and destroy his flower, it would be as if all the stars had gone dark.

Life is short and we will soon be forgotten on this planet. All of the millions or even billions we amass, like the wealthy businessman the Little Prince met on a planet he visited on his way to Earth, won’t matter a hill of beans.

Yet it isn’t just a question of enjoying ourselves while we can. On the contrary, it’s about the depth of our connections—in other words, how much of our capacity for infinite love gets realized.

Life itself is of vital importance, but not just in and of itself. It's rather like scaffolding for what’s being built up inside us.

Life is a journey of becoming uniquely ourselves, so that we can connect in a profound way with the unique essence of others.

It's through this deep connection that our time here becomes truly meaningful, as we are able both to be ourselves and simultaneously connect with others heart-to-heart.

Author's Bio: 

David Robert Ord is author of Your Forgotten Self Mirrored in Jesus the Christ and the audio book Lessons in Loving--A Journey into the Heart, both from Namaste Publishing, publishers of Eckhart Tolle and other transformational authors.

If you would like to go deeper into being your true self, powerfully present in the now, we invite you to enjoy the daily blog Consciousness Rising - http://www.namastepublishing.com/blog/author/david-robert-ord.