The Star Thrower

The Star Thrower

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The Heart

The word “heart” refers to the center of one’s consciousness. One’s inner life. From this place one does all thinking, feeling and choosing. Maintaining a pure or clean heart (Psalm 51:10; Matthew 5:8) requires taking in words of wisdom for out of the heart flow all the thoughts, words, and choices of a person’s life. Jesus said, “The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks” (Luke 6:45).

We design the heart floss posts for the care and maintenance of the heart. We begin with “The Star Thrower,” which illustrates how exposure to good and true things can promote a change of heart for the better. The application to your own life is open-ended.

Down and Out

Renowned anthropologist Loren Eiseley (1902-1977) wrote an essay entitled, “The Star Thrower” in which he recounts a profound experience that served to revive him from the doldrums into which he had fallen at one point in his career.

Lonely and depressed, Eiseley found himself wandering on the beaches of Costabel early one morning. As he observed the debris of life cast upon the shore by the relentless sea, he became even more despondent. He particularly observed a starfish stuffed in the sand struggling to breathe as its mucilaginous body dried in the morning sun.

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The Star Thrower

Further down the beach he came upon a man gathering objects from the sand and flinging them beyond the breaking surf. As he drew near to the man, he saw him reach for a dying starfish and toss it far out into the sea where it sank into a burst of spume.

“It may live,” the stranger said, “if the offshore pull is strong enough.” He stooped again, oblivious of Eiseley’s curiosity, and skipped another star neatly across the water. “The stars,” he said, “throw well. One can help them.”

As Eiseley walked away, he turned one last time and saw the stranger toss another star, skimming it skillfully far out over the waves. Pondering the futility of such an act, Eiseley thought, “The star thrower is a man, and death is running more fleet than he along every sea beach in the world.” What difference, he reasoned, could one man make against the overwhelming forces of nature working against him?

Then There Were Two

Yet, the words, “It may live,” aroused an almost forgotten hope and love for life that still lived in the inner recesses of his heart. He knew what he must do.

On a rain-swept morning, Eiseley returned to the scene and found the star thrower. Silently he sought and picked up a still-living star and spun it far out beyond the breakers. “I understand,” he said to the star thrower. “Call me another thrower.” He flung another. And another. And with each toss hope revived that despite the insatiable waters of death, one can make a difference—one star at a time.