quote of the day:
“the more clearly we can focus our attention on the wonders and realities of the universe, the less taste we shall have for destruction.” ~ Rachel Carson
there is so much noise around us all the time. iPod music (which i love), the tv, traffic, machines. so much noise. not to mention the noise that is inside our heads… the never-ending thoughts of wonder or fear or worry. it’s so easy to get stuck in all the noise around us & to drown out the true noise. silence. but silence scares us because we are left only with our thoughts, unless we can quell those as well. (which is why i love meditation – something to help me learn to be truly silent). all of these outside & inside noises & sounds that cause us stress, worry, anxiety, and a sense of hurriedness leave us unable to focus on the beauty & wonder that is all around us. the drown out our souls.
but, today is a day to try to shut off some of the extra noise & just listen to the universe.
this morning, i woke up, made my pot of coffee, got my computer & began checking on all the normal things i check on in the mornings – you know, catching up. i didn’t turn on any music (my love is still sleeping) and pretty soon, i realized that even though it is silent in my apartment, it isn’t silent at all. the birds are chirping & singing like crazy. (and of course, zola – the cat – is super busy watching all that’s happening with the birdies). by hearing the birds, i remembered that if i turn off all of the extra sounds that i can, then i hear the world. i hear the songs of nature, the music of life in a city. listening to the sound of life is inspiring – whether i am in the middle of the woods, by the ocean, or in a busy city. too often, though, i am wrapped up in my music plugged into my ears, or looking down at my phone while i walk instead of picking my head up, looking around, and listening to the sounds of birds, or water, or people chatting, or church bells ringing, or dogs barking, or children laughing…
today, in sweden, is called dymmelonsdagen. it is the wednesday before easter. there is not that much that happens in swedish society today that is different, but the tradition is to replace all of the metal clappers in church bells (the round, hard thing that bangs against the bell) with ones that are called dymbils – which make a duller, more muted sound. so, today, church bells ring, but you can’t hear them. it’s part of a preparation for the next 4 days, which are holy days in christianity. it’s a chance for a little bit of silence.
silence is preparation, i believe. how many times have you taken a moment to take a deep breath before doing something important or scary? silence allows us a moment (or a day) to prepare ourselves, our hearts, minds, souls to be ready for what comes next. we slow down just enough to begin to listen to the world around us and our soul inside of us.
today i will be super busy – as i am every wednesday. but, in the middle of the busy-ness, i pledge to listen to the world around me – to listen better to the sounds of nature which are even in the city, to listen deeply with ones who talk with me, to listen to my heart. in the middle of my busy day, i am headed to my yoga class… a perfect opportunity to spend and hour and a half just listening.
if you get a chance, turn things off. listen to the silence – and then hear the music of the universe. perhaps in doing so, we will all hear more clearly who we are, who we are called to be, and how we can be true to ourselves & each other.
wishing you calmness & peace in the midst on this wednesday.
Enjoy the silence while you have the chance! I have had the ringing of tinnitus for about 10 years now, so I never get to enjoy complete silence anymore. Because of that, however, I am more aware of potential further ear damage from loud noises, so I consciously choose a quiet environment when I can. I prefer no background noise as in TV, radio or CD (since I have not yet joined the i-pod generation). I LOVE listening to the birds when I am out walking and plan my walks to be as far away from the busy roads as I can be. I do generally listen to music (or sometimes news) when I am driving, but sometimes I need a break even from that.
That doesn’t mean I have mastered the technique of mind control when there are not other noises distracting me…