An Unexpected Gift From Silence


The theme of silence is emerging through my conversations with various people this week. Maybe it has something to do with it being summer and needing time to chill away from it all. To me August and September in Texas are like the winter months up north. Unless, I am close to some refreshing body of water, especially in the afternoons, I'd rather be inside.

By spending more time indoors, I have done things like refresh my meditation practice. The benefits of stillness and silence are obvious once again. Sitting in observation mode, I start to notice my particular thoughts. There are all kinds of them that come and go. My mind wants to evaluate each one as either "positive" or "negative" thought. If its a negative thought, I notice imagining what I can do to rid myself of it or quickly address it in some way. Mostly, I want to run from it. What happens if I just continue to sit, letting my thoughts be? I greet my evaluation, acknowledge it and return to the silence because now is not the time for action. Denying the urge to judge, fix my situation or take action, requires great patience. Yet I am discovering by sitting as witness to all of my urges, that ease and relaxation are present even in the face of outer disturbance. Maybe I am not just the action taker and fixer aspect of me. It has helped me get this far yet there is more wanting to be birthed through my experience these days. It seems to be a significant shift. Continued exploration in silence is required. Fixing disturbance on the outside may not be all that I believed it was.  Relishing silence makes me more available for what is evolving. Perhaps the greatest opportunity exists in what is unfolding before of us and noticing it, requires being this present.

A friend came over today and talked to me about his loneliness. I certainly know what loneliness is and have had my fair share of it. Yet fixing loneliness is an urge and with deepened practice of being in the silence, it can completely shift into something very different and unexpectedly valuable such as aloneness. Aloneness was actually defined in a fascinating article I recently read as "presence, fullness, aliveness, joy of being, overflowing love. You are complete".  Witnessing an emotion like loneliness transmute into aloneness, just by denying the urge to let it distract (even by judgement), is a fascinating experience.  It is in fact,  a moment of personal alchemy which is no small thing.