Sunday, October 30, 2005

Silence

The following was written by my wife, Julie, aka: the-love-of-my-life.

It is seldom that we are still and quiet. Ask yourself, "When was the last time I sat quietly, doing nothing but listening." Try it. What do you hear? Where does your mind wander? How long can you sit quietly?

If you are fortunate to live in the country, your efforts to remain still may be rewarded with silence, a rare commodity in this age of noise. If not complete silence, then you may hear the gentle music of birds. If you live in town, I challenge you to travel to the country for the specific purpose of being still.

Perhaps you think I'm overreacting and can't understand my point. My husband and I used to walk every chance we got - to work, to the movie theatre, to a restaurant. This is when I first noticed the amount of vehicle noise that is constant nowadays. If you've not walked on a busy street in a while, there is nothing better to drive my point home. Try walking with a friend and attempting a conversation. Between the semis, city buses, diesel pickups and cars adapted with exhaust resonators, it's hard to make yourself heard.

I often wonder at the affect of constant noise on our souls. I feel irritable when subjected to too much noise. I remember the saying, "I can't hear myself think" and know exactly what it means.

But, more than the negative affect of the noise on our ears and psyche, I think we miss the positive affect of silence. It has a healing, calming affect. For me as a believer, itis a chance to reflect on loved ones or life's direction.

We are all different, but if what I say strikes a chord, then seek out silence and stillness. I believe you will benefit and might even find that you need a regular dose of it to feel balanced.

6 Comments:

Blogger kathy said...

What your wife said rings truth with me.
Thanks for sharing :)

10/30/2005 09:26:00 PM  
Blogger George Breed said...

A few years ago, I lived about three miles from my work place and walked the round trip each day.

At first, the noise of the vehicles made me angry. Later, sadness for the folk locked within their compartments came.

As a bona fide geezer, I can also attest to the fact that hearing loss is a blessing in this noisy world we have created. All I have to do for silence is turn two little switches on my hearing aids.

Thank you, Dear Lady!

10/31/2005 02:52:00 AM  
Blogger Meredith said...

Julie,
I couldn't agree with you more. In silence, one can hear "that still small voice." Not only hear, but also become more open to see the majesty of our peaceful surroundings - which seems to happen more readily in natural, noble silence.

Peace to you in silence,

10/31/2005 08:24:00 AM  
Blogger Rob said...

It is the noises inside my head that bother me the most.

10/31/2005 10:45:00 AM  
Blogger RedBark said...

Once I moved back to the city after living away from cities for a time. The noise of the traffic actually brought tears to my eyes. I tried going to the foothills at the edge of town but still could not escape. Only then did I realize the significance of noise.

Now I live in the foothills where there are few un-natural sounds and the air is clean. I feel pretty lucky.

Now what can I do about the sound of my computer fans. I can ignor it but I am sure that it still affects me.

Oh yes, the internal noise. It is not so bad when I can remember not to amplify it by following those random thoughts into daydreams.

Tell Julie to keep writing.

10/31/2005 05:42:00 PM  
Blogger Larry said...

Silence is a big part of my life. (Like George I'm always willing to turn down the volume on occasion.)

Achieving internal silence can be learned through application. It transcends the noise of society.

To develop a quiet mind is a major part of spiritual maturity. In Quaker meetings people learn how. But some people come in raw and simply can't stand it; it's not for everybody.

But one can be quiet within in the midst of noisy surroundings. That's worth working on.

Thanks for this post, Paul and Julie, and for the comments, too.

10/31/2005 06:23:00 PM  

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