Life gets messy, doesn’t it? We are constantly bound to obligations, we are told to follow a schedule, we are deprived of time, we are engulfed in the down and outs and the soaring heights that quickly follow. We get so tethered to our daily realities. It’s hard to gain perspective when we are so closely tied to our daily grind. But there’s a strange shift in all the mess when we realize how incredibly unimportant and small we are in juxtaposition to how large the planet actually is. That is what occurred to me at top of the tallest building on the world, the Tokyo Skytree.
Standing like a beacon in the distance of Tokyo’s skyline, the Tokyo Skytree is a sight to be seen from both the ground and above. Representing harmony with the surrounding city scenery, the structure’s name and design stands as a neo-futuristic, towering beauty that boggles the mind of those below and floors those roaming its panoramic observatory.
Like a scene in “Her,” so many bright, white screens attempt to capture the stretching city landscape (although meagerly and often at the expense of cutting off a waiting stranger). Watching dozens of little humans shuffle to and fro from window to window, whispering excitedly to their partners and squeezing the hands of their children as they peek over the building’s edge is a lesson in human observation. How could you not feel the weight of the daily struggles melt away?
Tokyo’s skyline is awe inspiring. A true sermon on the human capacity to create, invent, disperse, evolve, adapt and reach higher. Even at the height of the tallest building on this planet, the city unfolds ever onward, like an unending hazy, building filled horizon. As the sun began to set on the already sprawling silvery-blue skyline (a sight I don’t think I could ever, ever forget if I tried), the little twinkle of the small streetlights began to pop up like night’s stars, appearing non discretely but amounting to a great spectacle to soak in. Just when I thought I had memorized the shape of the cityscape, I began to notice the detailed patches skyscrapers that encompassed just a square inch of the pockets below.
When I was surrounded by clicking cameras and soft Japanese whispers, I truly realized how out of my element I was this summer. How strange I looked in comparison to every one else. How brash my language sounded in comparison to the one spoken around me. How out of body it felt to be literally across the globe from home. I felt so humanized in that moment. As I write those post now, I’m brought back to that moment. That feeling of unimportance but complete happiness in realizing that.
When in Tokyo, make yourself feel small. Go to the Tokyo Skytree at sunset. Do yourself, your ego and your perspective a favor.
Today I am actively taking a moment to admit that my struggles are only tiny struggles, and that my relationship to the world at large is one of million experiences… and even more importantly, that there is great beauty in that. Oh yeah, and counting the days until I can see Tokyo’s skyline once more!