When Calmness Comes…

 In Reflections

“…we might almost say silence is the tribute we pay to holiness; we slip off words when we enter a sacred space, just as we slip off shoes. A ‘moment of silence’ is the highest honor we can pay someone; it is the point at which the mind stops and something else takes over (words run out when feelings rush in).”

—Pico Iyer

Perhaps it’s the energy of the unofficial start of summer this coming Memorial Day weekend, the “hum” of concern beneath my conscious awareness of the national debt ceiling crisis, or the many tasks on my plate, but I’m craving moments of quiet calm inside and out right now.

In his 2001 article for TIME magazine on silence, Pico Iyer suggests we need to “earn silence” and seek to “make it not an absence but a presence; not emptiness but repletion.”

“Silence is something more than just a pause; it is that enchanted place where space is cleared and time is stayed and the horizon itself expands.” —Pico Iyer

As I read Iyer’s words of wisdom and those of others, the word respect comes to mind. Respect the power and hidden depths of silence, respect the calmness, sense of oneness, and more that can come when we stay with the silence just beyond our comfort zone.

If a “moment of silence is the highest honor we can pay someone,” perhaps we need to honor ourselves and each other this way now, while we’re alive. How might you bring more moments of silence into your days and conversations? How might you support silence in becoming a better friend to you?

May calmness come to you in moments of sweet silence.

Somewhere We Know…

“Somewhere we know that without silence words lose their meaning, that without listening speaking no longer heals, that without distance closeness cannot cure.”
―Henri Nouwen

Love is Silence

“Have you not noticed that love is silence? It may be while holding the hand of another, or looking lovingly at a child, or taking in the beauty of an evening. Love has no past or future, and so it is with this extraordinary state of silence.”
― Jiddu Krishnamurt

Quest for Silence

Turn off the radio.
Turn off the television.

Sit quietly in your chosen place of solitude.
Let your inner self speak to you.
Listen patiently into silence.

When calmness comes,
Then you will have used your will to
Let silence befriend you
Before and while you speak.

― Harry Wilmer’s closing poem in his book, Quest for Silence

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