I love silence, and as I get older, I enjoy it even
more. The problem is that I love music, also, so I
have to make a concerted effort to find silence in my life
by turning off the music now and then. Other times,
I just take a long hike or run or bike ride to someplace
where I know that there won't be any noise, and that also
helps me to find the silence.
And it's always worth it. What silence allows me to
do is relax completely, to think clearly, and to slow down
the pace of everything that I do. But it hasn't
always been that way. When I was younger, I found
silence to be a bit uncomfortable, for there was something
threatening about it. A silent moment was a moment
missing some sort of stimulus, making me feel that I
should be doing something or watching something or
listening to something.
I never realized then just what I was missing by always
filling the silent moments with sound. Gunilla
understands the value of silence, and that's why she tells
us that we should treasure it. Silence is the
stimulus that can help us to go inside of ourselves, to
find those reserves of love and hope and compassion and
ability. Silence allows us to explore our thoughts
and clarify them, to ponder things that are perplexing us
and to process things that we've learned recently.
Silence allows us to simply be, which is something that's
very hard to do in noisy environments.
I know people who have to turn on the TV or radio as soon
as they walk into a room--they can't handle the silence,
for it makes them uncomfortable. But what they don't
realize is just what the silence can do for them, if they
allow it to do so. It can be one of the most
soothing balms that they experience, if they let it be
so. Silence is a treasure, and it is an endangered
species, especially now that we carry our phones with
us. We must seek it out, revel in it, and enjoy it
whenever we can.