Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Blind man builds cars, sheds, birdhouses

MOORESVILLE, NC (WBTV) - Jan 21, 2011. Impossible has never been a word in Ronnie Presnell's vocabulary. Back in 1998, a car crash left Ronnie without any eyesight, but you don't need eyes to be amazing.
Everything he did before the crash, he does today. He builds cars, he builds birdhouses, and most recently, he builds a 10x12 storage shed for a buddy of his who's down on his luck.
Ronnie never stopped doing the things that make him happy. That's why he's never gotten too down about the tragedy that took his vision.

Resiliency is a big buzzword nowadays but 2500 years ago the Buddha understood the human condition very well. He realized that every human being goes through different stages in life; we are born, we age, can get sick and eventually die.  No one can escape that, no one can change that! Human life is very frail and also at the mercy of uncertainty like accidents, weather and natural disasters.
The Buddha recognized  that under these conditions and under the uncertainty of the future, in order to be happy, we have to learn to be resilient and make the best of what we have.We have to learn to live in the present since the past is gone and the future is a mere speculation.  We have to learn to live in the here and now.
When somebody goes through a significant emotional event like the above story, after the initial shock, we have two choices. You can choose to be a victim of the circumstances and do nothing  or bounce back and learn to realize your full potential. Only then you can exploit the skills and abilities that you have but  never used before.
Don’t you find amazing that a blind man can build cars, a shed and birdhouses while normal people with full functional limbs and eyes feel that they can't do anything at all? It's a matter of attitude; it's all in your mind. Let's not forget that happiness and resiliency is our choice. We choose to be happy or sad. We choose to overcome obstacles, or get crippled by them.
Stephen Hawking is a theoretical physicist and cosmologist, whose scientific books and public appearances have made him an academic celebrity. He has neuro-muscular dystrophy, a condition that has progressed over the years and has left him almost completely paralyzed. Even at this stage of paralysis, he still makes great contributions to the scientific world. Please read his introduction to the Steven Hawkins Universe TV series:
“Hello. My name is Stephen Hawking. Physicist, Cosmologist and something of a dreamer.  Although I cannot move and I have to speak through a computer, in my mind I am free.”
That is true freedom!

1 comment:

  1. What a wonderful American success story. Turn into a disabled mechanic/scientific-wunderkind and everything will work out. You have choices after all. Many people don't have many choices. Many people can choose between a rock and a hard place.

    And doesn't this also mean that you and only you are to blame, when you stay poor? To me this sounds more like typical protestant ethics than anything.