When I was younger, in my late 20’s early 30’s, music was always on. The only time it was silent was when sleeping. I carried a transistor radio with me to listen to talk radio at my desk while working. Silence was a foreign idea. It didn’t occur to me to cultivate silence. During that time, I took care of my aunt from time to time, and she seemed completely comfortable in silence. TV off, radio off, while she had 100’s of CDs, she wasn’t compelled to put them on. Instead, she could sit on her couch with no form of distraction at all. I thought it was weird.
Recently I’ve been practicing a pause at the beginning and end of each day. The pause included meditation, devotional and question. Today’s question is “What is keeping you from silence?” When I look back on that time caring for my aunt and how bizarre I thought it was to have quiet, I can see that I used music, TV, talk radio, all to distract me from my interior life.
Time passed, I have matured into a wisened old lady with an active mindfulness and yoga practice.
Still, I want to listen to mediation music while I meditate. I want to have someone guide me through yoga Nidra. When I’m cooking, I want to watch mindless TV. Why? What’s keeping me from simply being quiet?
As I got still and listened for an answer to this question, I realized that I become acutely aware of my emotions when I’m silent. My latest blog posts have displayed that my current emotional state is not a vacation destination. In other words, I’d prefer not. Who wants to feel their sadness and powerlessness?
And yet, when I do get still and become more aware of my inner life, instead of having big emotions manage me, I can recognize and manage these big emotions. I don’t want anger or frustration bossing me around. I certainly don’t want depression to force me into bed. To hell with that.
When I can be still and touch the heart of my being, I touch the heart of my Higher Power. And in that space, all is well.
Just for Today
I will practice stillness in silence. I will observe what comes up without judgment or reprisal. I will rest.
Please help me to connect with you, let me feel your presence, and not try to numb or zone out how I’m feeling with noise. Let me be intentional in my approach to our connection. And grant me peace.