Sometimes being a friend means mastering the art of timing. There is a time for silence. A time to let go and allow people to hurl themselves into their own destiny. And a time to prepare to pick up the pieces when it’s all over. ~ Octavia Butler
You may have noticed that if you want to speak to someone in a noisy, crowded room, the best thing to do is lean close and whisper. Yelling in an attempt to be louder than the room’s noise generally only hurts your throat and adds to the chaos. Similarly, that still, small voice within each of us does not try to compete with the mental chatter on the surface of our minds, nor does it attempt to overpower the volume of the raucous world outside. If we want to hear it, no matter what is going on around us or even inside us, we can always tune in to that soft voice underneath the surrounding noise.
It is generally true that the more insistent voices in our heads delivering messages that make us feel panicky or afraid are of questionable authority. They may be voices we internalized from childhood or from the culture, and as such they possess only half-truths. Their urgency stems from their disconnectedness from the center of our being, and their urgency is what catches our attention. The other voice that whispers reassurances that everything is fundamentally okay simply delivers its message with quiet confidence. Once we hear it, we know it speaks the truth. Generally, once we have heard what it has to say, a powerful sense of calm settles over our entire being, and the other voices and sounds, once so dominant, fade into the background, suddenly seeming small and far away.
We may find that our own communications in the world begin to be influenced by the quiet certainty of this voice. We may be less inclined to indulge in idle chatter as we become more interested in maintaining our connection to the whisper of truth that broadcasts its message like the sound of the wind shaking the leaves of a tree. As we align ourselves more with this quiet confidence, we become an extension of the whisper, penetrating the noise of the world and creating more peace, trust, and confidence. ~ Madisyn Taylor, Daily Om
Listen. What do you hear? For many of us, it is a jumble of voices that clutter our minds. Be it at the office, walking down the street, at the shopping mall, the coffee shop, or even at home, there is a deluge of the odious cacophony of noises that overwhelm our senses. In my case, I grew up in a home where it was the norm to have multiple televisions, radios and loud conversations going on at the same time. I was a child who yearned for silence, but only knew chaos.
Even when we are alone, endless to-do lists bombard our heads, or, all to often, the drones of negative thoughts billowing their unsolicited advice and opinions. Although there are those who thrive in a loud, boisterous and frenetic environment, most of us can only absorb it in bits and pieces. After a time, we long for the quiet and stillness that is a diversion from the raucous, noisy life of the outside world. I believe that is why meditation attracts me. At its nature, it demands quiet and stillness. The practice forces you to seek a space and time of solitude, and to ignore the constant chatter that relentlessly fills my head.
The thing is that at our core there is an infinite expanse of quiet, stillness and wisdom. As the article alludes to, those ‘whispers,’ speak quietly and carry a big stick, but they do not and will not seek to overcome the rancor of the unbridled mind. No, it is up to us to give it the environment in which it can share its abundant wisdom with us. In this hurry-hurry world, I realize that is easier said than done. Yet it is important, and by doing so, we bless ourselves with a most precious gift — that is, the ability to listen to the only voice that matters, our hearts.