Beauty is everywhere

An acquaintance of mine has the Karl Rahner quote, “Grace is everywhere,” in her email signature. Boy have I been meaning to read some Rahner too, because I tell you grace is everywhere, and so often in the simple form of beauty. It seems a little silly after all of my art history classes to call beauty itself a form; what I mean is that grace is manifest in whatever softens our hearts or makes us smile, and we often call these things “beautiful.”
I always make a point to arrive to school early. I like to get good parking, and I like to get a good seat in the library. More than that, I love the mornings at my school. Usually before about eight, the sky will still be a bit overcast, and the air will be cool and sometimes misty. It isn’t too early for birds or bees, so they will be flying and buzzing among the lavender and other plants. No one will be out shouting or playing music yet. I can walk through the rose garden and thank God because… how can such a fragrance exist? How can simple matter turn into such lovely forms of life? I am so fortunate.
And best of all in the morning? The rabbits. Yes, before it gets too hot or sunny for them, and before they are terrorized by skateboarders and loud headphones, there they are in the grass or among the shrubbery! I love them. I love to look for them, and to be as still and quiet as I can, watching them. If one is frozen still for more than a few seconds, I move along because I realize I’m just frightening it; but often I can get decently close without bothering the little creature, and then I can watch it munching and hopping. Wednesday morning I watched an adult rabbit for a few minutes, and it was a joy–and then out from somewhere, hello, a baby rabbit. Ah! What words can express it…? Beauty is everywhere, grace is everywhere, ever so quietly snacking on the plants, and perhaps even afraid of you; but there it is still, if only you look for it. There is no better way to start the day than this, as far as I know.

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