Universal - Mark Iandolo

Three icebergs randomly align at Jökulsárlón during sunrise, making for a serene photo opportunity.

“You know anything about chaos theory? It has to do with there being order, and even great beauty, in what looks like total chaos. And if we look closely enough at the randomness around us, patterns will start to emerge.” – The West Wing

One morning, while out running around like a chicken with my head cut off photographing the icebergs of Jökulsárlón beach, I encountered such beautiful chaos. The icebergs were scattered everywhere; I frantically chased the light and the fleeting colors and searched for compositions. It was anxiety-inducing and I almost gave up hope. Finally, right at the peak of sunrise, I noticed three icebergs in a perfect line.


According to the internet (so it must be true), three is the universal number. The power of three is the tripartite nature of the world as heaven, earth, and waters. It is the human as body, soul and spirt. It is birth, life, death. Beginning, middle, end. Past, present, future.

Three is also considered the number of harmony, wisdom and understanding. Three is lucky, for “the third time’s the charm.” And when lined up perfectly like here in Jökulsárlón, I’d like to think three represents serenity.


That morning, it seemed like the cosmos was sending a message that sometimes, despite the chaos, I need to take a moment to relax. Take a moment to commune with nature. To notice the patterns and reflect on Earth’s majesty. That morning, the sunrise at Jökulsárlón felt universal.

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