virgin islands scene

Mistakes show us what we need to learn.
-- Peter McWilliams


Monday, June 10, 1996


Friday morning we had a wonderful thunderstorm at sunrise that knocked out electrical power to 12,000 homes for about 2 hours.

After the storm had subsided, but before the power was restored, I sat alone in the house and was overcome with the quietness that was around me. Under normal circumstances, “quiet” means having the TV and stereo off, and the kids in bed. But the absence of electricity took “quiet” to a new level. No hum of the refrigerator or rumble of the air conditioner. No whine of disk drives and cooling fans from the computer system. The only sound was the occasional drip of water off the roof. I realized that what I normally thought of as quiet was really quite noisy.

And sitting there in the quietness, I experienced a stunning clarity of awareness. With my mind freed from having to process all those normal, everyday sounds, there was capacity available to actually think. And it made me wonder... What other kinds of “noise” do we get used to? And what does that noise block from our awareness? Sometimes it is useful to step away from all the noise in order to remember that there’s someone here inside.

— Ralph Marston

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Copyright ©1996 Ralph S. Marston, Jr. All Rights Reserved. The Daily Motivator is provided for your personal, non-commercial use only. Other than personal sharing, please do not re-distribute without permission.