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Photo by Stijn Dijkstra from Pexels

In the ocean off the coast of Antarctica, a snail lives around scorching hydrothermal vents. Its name is Gigantopelta chessoia. From the outside, it looks like any other shelled slug. But on the inside, something strange is happening, scientists report in Proceedings of the Royal Society B, like no metamorphosis ever observed in any other animal on the planet.

Once the snail reaches a certain body length, its digestive system stops growing. Its teeth, stomach and intestine make way for an expanding esophageal gland. The organ gets so big, it takes up most of the snail’s body, and basically becomes a new organ. Bacteria colonize it, and the snail, which grazed for food when it was smaller, no longer needs to eat. Instead it just sits there getting bigger, surviving on energy the bacteria produces inside the snail’s cells.

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To make a human comparison, imagine growing from an average size adult to one 30 to 60 feet tall, with a giant sac of bacteria living inside you.

Not all animals eat. Some shallow water corals, for example, have algae living inside their tissues that take in sunlight and convert it to energy that provides the corals with nutrients. In the deep sea, there is no sun, but vents provide chemicals that bacteria break down. This is the basis of the deep-sea food chain. Gigantopelta chessoia, instead of algae, have bacteria living in some of their cells that convert hydrogen sulfide and oxygen the snails absorb from the vents into energy. (1)

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It seems incredible.

But this is what happens to us as well.

Not with our body.

But with our mind.

We “eat” spiritually in our first four years of life.

And then we are set to go. Equipped with all we need.

Our beliefs…

Our prejudices…

Our character…

We are set up from our parents from our early years. And from that point onwards we never look back. We are bound by the things we do not think that bounds us.

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Crafting…

Watch that baby grow.

Watch her go to school.

Watch her making friends.

Watch her driving for the first time.

She never left your arms…

She is still there…

Crying…

Smiling…

Hugging you…

Don’t be afraid to die.

Please dad don’t die!

You are not alone…

Smiling…

Mother! Don’t die!

She is calm now.

Remembering her dad…

Smiling…

Giving him that perfect little kiss on his nose…

And between those crying eyes…

The sweet fire of existence starts raging…

Noli timere…

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