Here in New England, our recent visit from hurricane Irene resulted in widespread, extended power outages, flooding, fallen trees and dangerous exposed live wires.
Forcefully removed from conveniences and technology, many people griped, complained and pointed fingers of blame at the utility companies and road crews trying to get us back up and running. Yes, recovery was slow, but all of the griping indicates that we missed a great opportunity for healing and growth.
The "calm after the storm" provided by the power outages, gives us an opportunity to stop; to reconnect and reflect on what really matters; to review our life circumstances; to ponder how we prepare for and recover from storms in nature and in our daily lives. Actual tragedies aside, most of us would benefit from learning how to "count it all for joy," even in the midst of discomfort and inconvenience.
Admittedly the first day of techno-withdrawal is difficult. What can we do when we can't do what we always do? The answer is that we do the things we always say we do not have time to do: read, write, bring out the cards and board games, and...yes...even talk to each other!
If we say that we do not have time to pray or meditate, this is the perfect time to do so. While the hyperactive culture we have developed demands we produce and stay busy, those demands are unreasonable and detrimental to enjoying our everyday lives.
There are many lessons that can be learned in "the calm after the storm." They say "hindsight is 20/20. As days without power drag on, it becomes clearer each day how well we prepared before the storm...or not. How well we handle the frustration and inconvenience is a good indicator of how we handle the ups and downs in our lives.
The second principle of Hermetic Philosophy states: "As above so below, as below so above." In Unity we call this the Law of Correspondence. Our state of consciousness (above) manifests as our life experience (below).
A good number of people in the affected areas did not prepare for the storm at all. They are the ones that suffered most. In spite of warnings, they declared it is all just hype and went on their merry way. Hopefully, reflecting in the dark, hungry, they have a change of consciousness. Yet, how many times in our own lives do we ignore red flags? And suffer the consequences?
Then there are those who prepared according to the lists provided by the 'experts' in the field. We do not prepare for trouble with the expectation we will have trouble. We prepare so that we do not need to carry around a "what if" thought that will distract us.
In the calm after the storm we reflect on what worked, what did not work, and what worked that could have worked better. The same is true for any "storm" or challenge in our lives. They say that those who do not learn from history are forced to repeat it. Looking at history as "his story," or "her story," we can see where changes can be made, and wisdom applied.
Jesus said, "In the world you will have tribulation (storms), but I have overcome the world." We, too, can overcome the storms in our world by receiving the gift that is the "calm after the storm."
Think on these things. RevAli