Silence. Do You Hear What It’s Telling You?
(Read in less than :04)“Everything that’s created comes out of silence. Your thoughts emerge from the nothingness of silence. Your words come out of this void. Your very essence emerged from emptiness. All creativity requires some stillness.“~ Wayne Dyer
Last month I mentioned that my friend Mary Jane gave me a book. I read it very slowly, in sweet, tiny bites and I savored each page. Every word in it is a pearl. My usual pattern is to devour books in huge hungry gulps. When I’m done, I hope I’m left with one or two nuggets of wisdom. But not this time. I reflected on the author’s words. And the whole time I was reading it, I wondered if it would be possible for me to follow in her footsteps.
And you know what? As much as I admire what she has done, the answer is no. The author, Anne D. LeClaire, is notably a fiction writer. But in Listening Below the Noise, she shares her real-life journey of spending two days a month in silence, a practice she began in 1992. What’s most incredible is that on two Mondays every month for all these years, she does not speak at all, but only listens.
The Transformative Power of Silence
“The more reflective you are, the more effective you are!”~Howard Gardner
As much as silence can teach us, I would guess most of us wouldn’t have the freedom to do as Ms. LeClaire does but that does not mean we can’t learn from her! Her circumstances are far different than yours and mine and she lives on Cape Cod to boot, a perfect spot for escaping into the magnificence of nature for reflection.
Just because we can’t have the whole pie, though, doesn’t mean we can’t have a slice! In fact, in her closing chapter, LeClaire offers many suggestions for wading a little ways out into the waters of silence. Please look closely at the picture above and notice the flawless reflected image in the water. It’s perfect because the water is still. In the same way, it’s only in silence can we be still enough to reflect deeply.
I encourage you to begin simply and in small ways. Little things like unplugging the headphones when you walk. Listen, instead to the sounds of nature. Don’t automatically turn on the TV for “company” when you walk in the door. Do small chores manually for a change. A broom instead of a leaf blower. Do dishes by hand in silence, notice the warm water, the bubbles in the sink and thank God for the blessing of your meal.
You can find pockets of silence and reflection right here, right now
“The quieter you become, the more you can hear.”~ Ram Dass
You don’t need special tools, a certain address, or memberships to find small pockets of silence in your day. Looking back, I see that I have to keep doing a reset on my habits to stay the course and for me, three times a year works well. New Year, my birthday and now, as the season changes. You’ll find your rhythm as you work into this process.
I’ve found enormous benefit in spending the first minutes of my morning in what Matthew Kelly calls “the classroom of silence.” It’s so necessary to my well-being I get up thirty minutes early to make time for it no matter what. It’s made a huge difference in my inner peace. On the other hand, my friend Janita loves to snuggle into bed a little early each night for to spend time soaking in silence with her journal. It doesn’t matter what the time, just do what fits in your day and make it a habit. You’ll reap abundantly!
Friends, I need your help. What would you ask me if just the two of us could sit down over a nice cup of tea or coffee or cocoa and visit? Anything you want to know! I’ve traveled much farther along life’s path than most of you and while I don’t think for a minute I have all the answers, I’ll share everything I’ve learned along the way! I think we all share a hunger for a life with greater purpose and meaning!
Without your input, there’s no ping to my pong, no Marco to my Polo! Think about it and comment or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Have an amazing day and week and I’ll see you again on Thursday!