Monday, October 19, 2020

October 19--True Silence

True silence is the rest of the mind, and is to the spirit what sleep is to the body: nourishment and refreshment.  --William Penn

    Wow, "true silence"... is that even possible? It seems that even if I do get into a place of silence, my endless mind chatter amps up. I know that I do seek out silence, as I rarely listen to music, and I don't have background noise like a TV going. I have plenty of "quiet," and that is restful and nourishing. 
    I think of my favorite spot on planet Earth--Alan Seeger Natural Area (its official name) in central Pennsylvania. My family spent many joyful hours picnicking there when I was a youngster. In my rare passes through my home area, I never fail to stop there. It defines "true silence" for me. Hemlock, white pines, and rhododendron fill the area. There is an always-frigid mountain stream running through it. The smell of freshness is like nowhere else I've been--I love to drink it in. There are birdsong, flowing water, leaves rustling, bugs buzzing, so even in this glorious place, there is not "true silence," but those sounds enfold me, take me in, nourish and refresh me. 
    I can't depend on a drive through central Pennsylvania for all my silent nourishment. Locally and often, I take a seat on my backyard swing and enjoy my garden, the birdsong and squirrel chatter, dogs barking, and miscellaneous city sounds. Again, it's certainly not "true silence," but it is nourishing and refreshing to swing peacefully back and forth. 
    Where in your life do you find the nourishment and refreshment of silence?

At Alan Seeger Natural Area

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