The Sound of Silence
Posted by upliftingthoughts4u
A few days ago, we were on top of Haleakala Crater on Maui. The sun was warm, and the view of the crater was clear. There was no wind, for a change, and the clouds were far below us. We stopped by a lookout on the way down from the top. It was there that I heard it: A profound Sound of Silence which touched me deeply. Somewhere inside of me, I heard and felt a stillness that I have never experienced before at this level. It was so peaceful and quiet. I felt so very blessed at receiving this precious gift. The surroundings were not only beautiful and majestic, but it inspired awe in the beholder. The Silversword plant, which only grows there, is wondrous. The clouds were coming straight up from the rain forest far below, like wisps of imagination. It was hard to leave it in order to return to the hustle and bustle far below us, catching our flight home.
I know that it is an oxymoron, for how can Silence have a Sound? Perhaps because it is the exception. Sound is a pollution present in every place inhabited by humans and animals. Some of it is pleasant, like the rustle of leaves in the wind, surf on the seashore, or a waterfall. How about the sound of a child’s laughter or a cat purring? However, most sounds come from our environment: Traffic, horns, overly-loud music, neighbors fighting over some trivial thing, etc. Some we like: a newborn baby’s cry, good music, conversation with a loved one or friend. Others we do not care for much because it is not within our frame of reference. Even when life is a little quieter, there are not many places where one can experience the Sound of Silence.
The stillness in my soul is now present with me, wherever I go. It is like it makes the song of birds more sweet, the flowers more colorful, and my awareness is more alive than I ever remember. I know I am more peaceful at the center of my being. I treasure this greatly.
In the Bible in Psalm 46:10, it states: “Be still and know that I Am God.”
In this stillness, it gives us a home base from which to operate. Eric Butterworth said it very well: “Be in the hub of a wheel, living life from the center instead of at the circumference.” If you are caught up in the sound and fury of all the activity, guess who is at the circumference? (Is it any wonder that, at the end of the day, you feel like you have been run over by something?) But if you take a few minutes for yourself in the morning for quiet contemplation/meditation, you can respond more from the hub of the wheel (for it is very motionless there) and with a more thought-filled response to everything.
Life itself is filled with cacophony. It begins with sound of an alarm clock so we can get underway, and continues throughout each day. Perhaps the baby is crying, the young children are fighting, or the phone is ringing, and the TV is already on. Sometimes, we are so afraid of being alone that we fill our surroundings with noise, be it a computer, music, TV, cell phone, etc. Some, of course, is generated by our 24/7 lifestyles, earning money so we can afford to live in this economy. The only question is: Is your health suffering from the anxiety, stress, and overload that is in your life, caused by the choices you have made in the past? How, then, can one begin to get a handle on this? Easy: One thing at a time. Begin to thoughtfully look at your reality and see each individual thing by itself. Then you can make a decision to alter it however you can to make your life more peaceful.
Serenity of Spirit is a worthwhile goal. It has a price that it demands, however. One must stop responding to exterior stimuli the way you always have. Dr. Wayne W. Dyer says, “Change the way you look at things, and the things you look at change.”
Will I forever be grateful for the Sound of Silence which I experienced on Haleakala? You bet! I have a new perspective to add to the daily ingredients for living a fulfilled life.
If you are a scuba diver, a snorkeling enthusiast, a spelunker, a hiker or climber of mountains, you know whereof I speak. You have experienced the moments of Silence.
I believe that each experience becomes part of our Tapestry of Life. Some beautiful memories add in the rainbow colors, and the tears and grief add the contrast of the background. When all is said and done, your Tapestry will be unique to you alone. How do you want it to look? No one else can weave it for you. For good or ill, it is yours to do. Others can have an opinion about what you should and should not do. But you are the captain of your ship. You alone must decide how to sail it and where you are going.
If you have a stillness inside from which to make your decisions, you will be able to ACT vs. REACT. If one is always REACTING to external stimuli, you will always have greater chaos in your life. ACTING means you take time to think things through before responding. If you have a charging elephant coming at you (which few of us will ever have), you will REACT. The rest of the time, ACTING is the champion of Self Control and Calmness.
Funny thing about that is people are attracted to you because they can sense your attitude before you ever open your mouth. It emotes from you like the scent from a flower.
How do you begin? The following quote (which is mistakenly stated to be from Van Goethe *) puts it very well:
“Then indecision brings its own delays,
And days are lost lamenting over lost days.
Are you in earnest? Seize this very minute;
What you can do, or dream you can do, begin it;
Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.”
By utilizing this idea, Synergy is thus created. (The Secret of SYNERGY is that, once movement begins, it multiplies and continues.) Is it a worthwhile goal? Absolutely! But only you can decide that. Are you willing?
God’s blessings upon your journey!
* (The lines are attributed to John Anster in a “very free translation” of Faust from 1835, where the lines in question are spoken by the “Manager” in the “Prelude at the Theatre.”)
Posted in Uplifting Thoughts
Tags: act, anxiety, awareness, blessings, calmness, center, chaos, choices, conversation, Eric Butterworth, gift, God, Haleakala, Haleakala Crater, health, hub, imagination, journey, life, majestic, Maui, meditation, metaphysics, music, New Age, New thought, Peace, Psalm 46:10, quiet, react, self control, serenity, silence, Silversword, sound, Sound of Silence, stillness, stress, surf, Synergy, tapestry, thoughts, Truth, understanding, waterfall, willing, wisdom
Posted by upliftingthoughts4u
Everyone looks outside of themselves for guidance. Ask a friend. Ask an associate. Ask a boss. Ask a parent. You name it. There are as many opinions out there as there are people.
A child needs the help and guidance of the parent/parents as he/she grows. God designed it that way.
However, as we mature, we have to come to the idea that we have to make decisions on our own. One cannot depend on exterior sources forever. We can inquire into many resolutions in any way that seems fitting to us…all exterior to our minds. They can help us sort it all out. But we have to know: THE MOMENT OF ABSOLUTE CERTAINTY WILL NEVER ARRIVE!
Sooner or later, we have to decide: Get into the boat with both feet and begin to row, or get out on the bank with both feet and find a different path. You cannot go anywhere by having one foot in the boat and one on the land.
For me, it is vital to make the connection/recognition of the God Self within — the Inner Companion who will always be there for me, waiting for my attention, recognition, and listening ability. First, last, and foremost, Prayer can help me sort out what is important and what is not. My mind can be jumbled like the Dr. Dolittle’s Pushmi-pullyu. I can feel stressed out, thinking about some problem that is of significance to me at that moment. Once I enter my meditation and calmness breathing, I can sort things out so much quicker. I can KNOW that everything is going to be all right, no questions asked. You see, Prayer, Meditation, and Breathing are all one — not separate functions.
Life unfolds before me in its fullness. I know that all my loved ones, problems notwithstanding, are being held in the hands of God. Each one is God’s child, too. Sooner or later, each one will find whatever it is that is needed to guide them and provide for them in every way.
Doubt is the killer here. If God’s phone is on busy, and I am not deserving, I am pleading for naught.
Belief is vital. God is With Me = Emmanuel. That is what it means. If God be for me, then who can be against me? Together, we form a majority. I ASK, BELIEVING that it is already done. It is moving from the unseen into the seen. When I say Amen, I know it will appear in whatever form it needs to take. I watch answered prayer every day of my life. How, then, could I not believe?
I ask God questions all the time by writing them down in a book and date it. When I get the answers, I also write them down. God is faithful and always responds through any avenue He sees fit. It might not be the answer I thought of, but it is an answer nonetheless.
God is so good to me. I can truthfully say that. I can look back over all the years, and be grateful for the good people who have come into my life: friends, loved ones all, are wonderful to my eyes. My life is full. My cup runneth over, daily. I have wonderful memories of so many delightful things.
I can look back over the tears I have shed by the bucket-full, and know that they served their purpose. I can remember all the sadness, disappointment, and dismay and know the same.
Kahlil Gibran’s “The Prophet” addresses this very well:
“Then a woman said, Speak to us of Joy and Sorrow.
And he answered:
Your joy is your sorrow unmasked.
And the selfsame well from which your laughter rises was oftentimes filled with your tears.
And how else can it be?
The Deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.
Is not the cup that holds your wine the very cup that was burned in the potter’s oven?
And is not the lute that soothes your spirit, the very woods that was hollowed with knives?
When you are joyous, look deep into your heart and you shall find it is only that which has given you sorrow that is giving you joy.
When you are sorrowful, look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight.
Some of you say, ‘Joy is greater than sorrow,’ and others say, ‘Nay, sorrow is the greater.’
But I say unto you, they are inseparable.
Together they come, and when one sits alone with you at your board, remember that the other is asleep upon your bed.
Verily you are suspended like scales between your sorrow and your joy.
Only when you are empty are you at standstill and balanced.
When the treasure-keeper lifts you to weigh his gold and his silver, needs must your joy or your sorrow rise or fall.”
These are treasured words for me.
Would I want to relive any of the bad memories? Nope. They came. They went.
Would I want to revive all of the good memories? Nope. They came. They went. I will treasure them always, but they are not my now.
When I am seeking Guidance, I know in my heart that: LIFE IS LIKE A SYMPHONY — ALL THE GOOD NOTES, ALL OF THE OFF NOTES, ALL THE BAD NOTES — BECOME ONE — THE SOUND OF MUSIC.
All of life’s memories become a tapestry, where the dark threads only highlight the brightness and color of all the others.
Knowing this has given me great equanimity and calmness, helping me to not only ask for Guidance and in Prayer for the many needs of every single person I know, some very tragic and heart-rending, some just confused, some seemingly lost on the path, some needing healing, etc.
GOD IS THE ANSWER…WHATEVER YOU CONCEIVE OF THAT GOD…WHATEVER RELIGION…WHATEVER BELIEF SYSTEM…GOD IS THE ANSWER.
Matthew 7:7-11: “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that seeketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh, it shall be opened. Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone? Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent? If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?”
Additionally, Luke:11:12 “Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion?” Same story.
Matthew 21:22 “And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.””
Is your life chaotic? Confusing? Are you in need of more information? Guidance is available. ASK, SEEK, KNOCK. Are you willing?
Posted in Uplifting Thoughts
Tags: answer, ask, believing, breathing, calmness, chaos, choices, confusing, God Self, guidance, Inner Companion, joy, knock, life, meditation, memories, metaphysics, New Age, New thought, prayer, seek, sorrow, symphony, tapestry, thoughts, Truth, understanding, willing, wisdom