Thursday, February 17, 2011

The sound of silence

I was thinking today about the poetic term "sound of silence" as made famous in Simon and Garfunkel's hit single by that name. The theme articulated in the lyrics of that song gives some insight on part of how I personally feel about silence; namely, that silence is often the enemy to what ought to be said--yet it's a powerful friend in moments where a stark contrast to the glaring metaphorical noise of the world is critically needed. (. . .. as per my own interpretation of the song, of course.) So, yes. . . I enjoy silence.

The quiet moments wherein the soul has room to ponder the deeper things of life can be beautiful and life changing. And it's my opinion that music, TV, and other "noise" detract from that space a little too often (in my own life, at least). Some of the best advice I ever heard came from an 84-year-old man who answered a question about how he had maintained happiness and health throughout his long life. His answer was that he took at least 15 minutes every day to simply sit in a quiet place and think. Not read, write, listen to music, fall asleep, or anything else. . . just sit in silence, and think.

Life becomes so much more real when we can take a moment and disconnect. I think silence is a key to doing that effectively.  I really should plan and make room for such moments in my life a little more often.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Quote of the day: Be Present

One of the most profound things I've read in a while came from my sister-in-law who took a moment to summarize a few of the life lessons she has been privileged to gain recently.  She said:

"Life moves on whether we decide to be present or not. Be present! Be content with what you have, and live!"

How much time do we waste lamenting past decisions or dreaming of future achievements.  Life is here and now; and unless we are a part of it here and now, it passes us by leaving us with nothing more than more regret of what we missed while we weren't "there" for life as it came.

Thanks for the wisdom, Heather.  You're truly an inspiration to me!