in today’s world we are constantly bombarded with news, media, advertisements…noise. in a typical day, there are fewer and fewer moments when we’re afforded the opportunity to sit in stillness. and even when we find ourselves there, which is generally more involuntary than chosen, it’s become so foreign and unfamiliar we often turn to whatever device or distraction is closest so we don’t have to be with ourselves. being with ourselves has become scary. it’s uncharted (at least forgotten) territory for many, and when there’s an element of unknown and uncertainty, there’s often fear.
as much as i have been in that frightening place of being alone with myself, there’s a deeper part of me that breaks in grief over how afraid of ourselves we’ve become. how afraid of me i’ve been. “there is nothing to fear,” my inner wise one knows. “it’s in the silence we can hear our song.” only recently have i begun to truly let myself do completely nothing. to lay on the couch or the bed or the floor and just do absolutely nothing. sure, there’s a part of myself that urges me to fill that space in with something, however quiet that something might be (i.e., drawing, reading). but, there’s a stronger part of me that knows i’d be disconnecting from that part that just wants to purely be.
consciously connecting is where the gold lies. it’s where the rivers meet the oceans, where we truly begin to see the vastness of ourselves, our psyches, our hearts, our souls. to be in the silence is to say yes to the small spaces inside where the quiet lives: in between the breaths, blinks, beats.
most of us have experienced a prolonged time in our life where we were submersed in, surrounded by, quiet. (i say most because, unfortunately, for some being in the womb wasn’t a time of quiet and peace. that’s another article, though.) it was when we were in the womb, tucked away in our dark little home, hearing the heartbeat of our mother, the sounds of blood coursing through body, and later the muffled voices of others, that we had few distractions, no other choice to be with ourselves. this is the place of quiet. this is what we need more of.
so, what does that mean in a day-to-day life? obviously we can’t go back to the womb. that time has come. we can, though, remember the quiet that a part of us has always known and cultivate environments in which we’re able to go back there safely. perhaps it means we take an afternoon and curl up under a blanket. maybe we sit outside in the morning or evening, when life hasn’t yet woken or has begun to slow down in sleep. maybe, we lay down, in the middle of our lives, and stop. we notice the urge to do, and then get back to being. we let ourselves remember the quiet.