One day, an elderly man scolded his young son. He had mistakenly hit a young girl with his car while trying to scare her into crossing the road in a hurry. “I never knew it was going to turn out that way, I was only trying to make her run and the brake failed.” The distraught youth explained. His father replied, “You should have considered the consequences of your actions before carrying them out. Even if the brakes had not failed, what if she had fallen down while trying to cross the road? Is that not still an accident?”
Experience is the best teacher. In so many ways, life presents us with occasions for learning. These occasions, no matter how momentary, contain nuggets of wisdom which could only be unravelled by the discerning mind.
There is always something to learn from every experience whether you are sensitive to it or not. From the short illustration above we can infer that in life, your actions will be based on your decision, which is always the outcome of your sense of judgement and thought evaluation. It is obvious that one needs to think in multiple ways.
Tapping into the subtle lessons from our experiences calls for a high degree of sensitivity and observation, which can only be developed by cultivating the art of personal reflection. For every lesson you fail to imbibe, life has a way of making you pay for your ignorance.
The silent lessons in life need not come from your own experiences alone, but they are rife in all the daily occurrences around us. All we need would be a bit of sensitivity to the situation around us.
Go and achieve greatness!
Emmanuel AyeniArticle first published in Saturday Punch September11, 2010.