The Prism of Life4 min read

“The sun doesn’t shine for a few trees and flowers but for the wide world’s joy.” – Henry Ward Beecher




Visible or white light consists of an array of component colours. But these beautiful colours are not really seen until the light passes through a triangular prism.

When passing through the prism, the light separates into its component colours – red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet. And the separation of this visible light into different colours is known as dispersion.

Each colour is distinct with peculiar characteristics; they shine at different frequencies as they enter and pass through the prism. And when passing, the prism absorbs some of the light’s energy as it deviates from the normal and diverges through.

The deviation occurs in the prism between when the incident ray of light enters the first face of the prism and emerges from the second face as a refracted ray which is away from the normal. The emergence of different colours of light from the prism at different angles allows an observer to see the component colours of the shining light.

Read also The Lens of Life


The white beam represents being born into the world in all innocence. The prism represents life and our world in general, and the colours represent all the different ethnicities and facets of being as we pass through life. I see this dispersion as the variety of life called diversity.

You have happened to the world as an incidental ray and may have more than one gift to colour your world. Your impact on Earth is your shining. You are the light of the world so shine all you can.


Have you ever given a kid some snacks, asked for some back and he shook his head? And he didn’t ask before he was given.

Similarly, we didn’t ask for the life we’re given. It’s a gift and we should be willing to share by impacting our world. Don’t hold back.

We’re innocently born into the world to all the ethnicities of mankind with our various potentials. This diversity is the variety of life and we all have peculiar characteristics that make us stand out. From birth we’ve been bestowed with capacities we don’t know we possess. And until we decide to bring that precious gift out and show it to the world we can’t tell how far we can shine.

These gifts are seen when we deviate from the normal to be distinct. This deviation from the normal requires doing and pushing extra miles what others are doing regularly or not doing at all. This is what brings distinction.


Via our abilities, gifts, and talents, and by literally giving back to the world.

No matter who we are and what we choose to do we can change the world with it – as a leader in an organization or public office lead by serving. As an athlete be the best you can be in balling, running, swimming. As an entertainer who sings, acts, makes people laugh, who dances, paints or writes let your art speak to people and touch their lives. Your work inspires people you may never have met. The doctor, entrepreneur, inventor, businessman, lawyer, programmer, accountant, pilot, fashion designer, and the shoe shiner is not left out – shine that shoe like your life depends on it.

“Try not to get lost in comparing yourself to others. Discover your gifts and let them shine!” – Jennie Finch


Connect your work to a purpose. Find a connection.

This is how true life meaning is discovered. You can impact the world doing what you do. Akon has impacted the world with his music and is committed to lighting up Africa! How about you?

It takes the light and the prism to produce colours. Also, it takes the sun and rain to make a rainbow. It equally takes the world and us to shine in bright colours. What is the intensity of your shine? We need the world to shine as the world needs us to colour it no matter what colour we are.

When we shine individually and collectively we light up the world as the rainbow colours the skies. We’re rainbows and the sky is wide enough…

The dark age isn’t called dark because there was no light but because people didn’t shine bright ideas.

You start to shine when you impact your world. Until we try to make a positive impact we don’t shine. This is where the light hits the prism.

And when we deviate from the normal, which is not always comfortable, we become distinguished no matter what our ethnicity or vocation may be.

Leaving through the other side of the prism and still shining bright means leaving a legacy behind that shines long after you’ve left the prism of life.


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