Silence

 

 

Somebody once told me that if I wanted to be a good writer, all I had to do was be silent and it would just come to me. The problem was, I didn’t know how to be silent.

I am filled with a desire to communicate, and want nothing more than to tell the world about everything I’ve observed.  When I sit down to write though, my mind leads me in too many directions, tries to comprehend the totality of it, and I step away feeling overwhelmed by the task of where to begin.

I studied Buddhism, then learned about Taoism and became captivated by the idea of finding silence; not so much in my environment, but rather finding a way to silence my mind.

I’ve always been a reasonably intelligent person, my mind is a powerful tool, it allows me to decipher complex problems into simple pieces, but I’d never learned how to turn it off.

I learned about meditation and self-hypnosis, practiced breathing exercises, and then one day it happened.  I was there, trying so hard to force my mind into silence, and then I gave up, I stopped trying, and everything just dropped for a moment, and I was just there, observing without contemplating what I was witnessing, just taking it in.

My inner dialog fell into a complete silence, and I entered a state of pure observation.  It lasted only a few seconds, but in those seconds existed an infinity that makes time seem totally irrelevant.  Everything moved in perfect harmony and formed crystal clarity, and for the first time, life made absolute sense. It’s possible to find silence, I’d just been just looking for it in the wrong place.

Over the last ten years, I’ve learned how to find that state at will.  No matter where I am, no matter what I’m doing, I can halt the chatter of my mind and focus my energy into a state of deep awareness.

Someone once told me that the simplest way to learn Tao was to start by telling everyone that you were a Tao master.  “From there, life will bring you all the lessons you need to learn.”

As I enter my 40th year, I think I get it, but throughout my life I’ve always felt the same, so I don’t put a lot of effort into what “getting it” really means.

The enormity of my ego is an illusion.  I’m no better than the next guy, the only difference between us is our perception of who we are…Sometimes that’s enough to drive things apart.

I’ve learned how to love in unselfish ways, but did so for selfish reasons.  I don’t know if that somehow negates things, but I’m happy with the outcome.

My life thus far has turned out to be somewhat interesting, every day, a different kind of adventure, one that entangles me with people in ways that allow me to be unique, intrigued, and happy.  I wouldn’t trade this life with anyone, nor curse it upon anyone either.

It’s my life, which in the grand scheme of things isn’t much of anything, or everything all combined.  I guess it all depends on how you look at it.

 

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