For most people, silence is just a little rest from a busy world and a busy mind. But when silence is really embraced, when silence of the heart is explored, there is much more to simple peace and quiet. As much as noise rattles the nerves, silence brings inner harmony, a wholeness, and trust in life. Silence opens our awareness to a vast frontier of presence, an inner world that is without boundary. Out of habit, when most people encounter silence, they turn something on or they begin an activity. Change this habit, and we change our lives. Silence opens our awareness to a greater silence that is within us. It is important to note that silence of the mind is a place of little or no thought. Discover silence of the heart and find the home of the great silence inside the silence, where a universe of stillness awaits us.
Normally, our awareness is crowded with the matters of each day. Silence sends the crowd away. There is something more -- welcoming us, inviting us deep inside the body of silence. When we take the time for silence and surrender to its embrace, there are realms of being where we find complete freedom. There is freedom to move and think or not think, to feel and create. There is a freedom from compulsion, from the need to be doing, freedom from worry and desire. Silence frees our sticky awareness from clinging to and attaching to people, things and problems. In relation to the gravity of silence -- challenges and obstacles just can not hold on any longer. The touch of silence soothes our awareness, so worldly life does not impact us so strongly. No matter how much noise we live with, there is a silence within us that can serve as a healing barrier between us and the world. In this silence is a freedom which is home to realms where only silence can enter.
There is a great silence inside the silence in each of us. As we get to know this silence inside of silence, we begin to recognize it sheltering us. It is this silence that also shelters the trees and flowers in our garden, our children, neighbors and even a stranger we do not know. Silence shelters all, no matter how strong or vulnerable we maybe. As we get to know the great silence more, we begin to recognize it sheltering not only ourselves in good times and difficult moments, but sheltering everyone and everything. The refuge inside the silence is a great gift. It cuts through the superficiality of our world to the giving bones of joy and service which our lives are built upon.
Silence unloads the heaviness we carry until we attune to the weight of silence. The great silence spreads within us as we practice letting go, letting be, unloading the small and big things that occupy us. Tossing aside and throwing away the traffic and clutter of life happens naturally in the gentle waves of silence as it moves, rushes and wanders over, through and in us. Given a chance, silence can pick up, hold and heal the strongest enemy our mind can grasp. Silence is so powerful because it is the home of an indestructible love.
The full dimensions of love are experienced directly in silence. The silence inside the silence is a force beyond any worldly power. There is a great current taking us on a journey, that weaves around and through everything our awareness holds, until we land somewhere profound in the depths of our heart.
There are realms in the silence that noise cannot enter. Neither can anger, jealousy or need -- much of our human experience cannot go there. The silence inside the silence is a realm where only good, and that which is good, can go forward. So how do we enter, being as human as we are? We enter in the great acceptance, the skin of total non-judgment, which begins where silence begins. It is this skin of uncanny acceptance and innocence which gives silence its magic and its wonder. The silence inside the silence is the child's place of play and humor. It is very beautiful for our serious adult minds to be freed in the joy of children dancing in silence. This freedom is the essence of the silence inside the silence. We look into the silence, only to find the silence is looking into us. We listen in the silence and something greater is listening with us.
Silence rubs against the relatively coarse skin of our egos, but this is a good thing. It is good for us to let go of some self-importance to discover something that may be truly important, the silence inside the silence. The humility and simplicity of silence softens our worldly selves for love's presence. The subtle strokes of silence blow through our heart as a cool wind on a hot day, carrying and throwing seeds of light, understanding and eternity into our awareness. These seeds, and much more, are planted into our inner beings when we spend time in silence.
The silence in the silence is the actual presence of the soul. Purposelessness, loneliness and separateness are washed over and covered in the waves of silence as they carry us further into our own hearts, A goldenness of inner peace fills and flows out into a vast inner universe. Love simply embraces all thought until there is no separation. The silence in the silence is the actual presence of what we spend so much of our lives searching for.
This presence frees us from the story of our everyday lives, even though the story continues. The fertile soil of our hearts, mixed with silence and the light of our awareness, makes for a new growing season, where an inner spring seems to be continually happening. There is no limit to what can grow when the soil of our hearts and the light of our awareness come together in the great silence. Special seeds coated with grace are taking root. They are digging into the ground of our beings. Our hearts are moved, sprouting small vines of compassion, fun and a very bright light. This light makes a sun-filled day seem like night in comparison. We all know we feel changed whenever we experience love. This silence is the love that changes everything, by its spirit, its renewal, by taking charge of truth pouring us into life's sanctuary.
We invite you to join us in the gifts of silence at Silent Stay Retreat Home & Hermitage, near Napa, California, and Assisi, Italy.
For more from Bruce Davis, Ph.D., click here.
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