Some days, on the way to school, she will say ~ “Dad, I don’t feel like talking. Can I just stay quiet?”
I glance in the rear-view mirror and think ~ I love my morning conversations with her. I always learn something new from her. I am going to miss out today. But, I find myself saying ~ “Sure, honey. Go ahead. Be quiet.”
And most of the journey passes in silence, in stillness. My occasional glance in the rear-view mirror reveal her either looking out the window or deep in thought. Some days, I can’t resist. I interrupt her silence and ask ~ “what are you thinking about?” Most days, she will answer ~ “You know, Dad. I’m just thinking.”
On occasion, my glance will find her breaking into a gentle smile. Again, I ask ~ “what are you smiling about?” ~ “You know, Dad, I’m just smiling.”
Lately, I look forward to these trips that pass in silence for the most part. For, I have discovered that the quiet mornings, where I commune in silence with her, are some of the most calming to my spirit. And then, as she realizes that our trip is coming to an end, she will reveal her ‘wisdom’.
A few days ago, she said, unprompted ~ “You know what I was smiling about?”
No, tell me.
“I was smiling about what you said earlier ~ ‘one day, I will forget myself in the rush to get out the door in the morning’”.
And why were you smiling about that?
“Don’t you know, Dad? We cannot forget ourselves. Our self is connected to our self.”
I am sure that all of you have ‘stories’ like this that have lifted your spirit ~ stories that have emerged from silence and stillness. Either your own silence, or of those around you.
Do you engage in silent conversation? As we get more connected via social media, is it harder to engage in silence? How is silence different from stillness? Is stillness the same as meditation?
I invite you to come and share some of your stories, answer some of these questions, in a twitter conversation on Sunday, November 6th at 9am ET. All are welcome to tweet with the hashtag #SpiritChat from your favorite client, or visit http://tweetchat.com/room/spiritchat to join in our scheduled twitter chat.
Until then ~ I hope that your silence brings you to stillness.
Kumud ~ @AjmaniK
Update (Nov 7 2011):
Q1. Is their a practical difference between silence and stillness?
Q2. What are some everyday obstacles that prevent us from practicing silence?
Q3. What is the practical connection of silence with spiritual growth?
Q4. Are their practical uses for silence in our interaction with others?
Q5. Can we teach children and young adults ‘silence and stillness’?
Q6. What resources can we use to go beyond silence in practice?
#SpiritChat transcript Nov 6 ~ ‘Silence and Stillness of the Spirit’ ~ http://bit.ly/sc-tr-1106 ~ read, share, enjoy ~ thank you all!
P.S. Please leave a comment about the “Spirit of Silence and Stillnesss” if you cannot join us at the appointed hour. We would love to hear from you. Thank you.