Not a week goes by without some article that focuses on some type of craving whether it be food, a relationship, a substance or a gadget. I personally crave silence! I am so tired of a world that seems to have the need to fill every moment with some kind of sound. I never thought I would come to the place where I felt the desire to simply listen to nothing. When I was a high school student in a Catholic boarding school silent retreats were part of the curriculum, occurring every few months. Imagine a gaggle of teen age girls trying desperately not to talk and me in particular trying not to laugh. My particular group of friends would do anything in our power to get one of the so called “goody two shoes” to break. Which of course always led to us being separated and confined to our rooms. Waiting for the three days and nights of silent hell to be over with was a nightmare. I could not possibly understand the value the good sisters were trying to impart to us, since my internal chatter needed to be shared with anyone I came in contact with. “After all” Sister Immaculata would say “one does not need to express every thought they have”. I wonder what she would think of the reality shows. Oh how time changes our perceptions. I have spent years on the road and been inundated with sounds of all kinds, and the amount of noise that surrounds us seems to have grown exponentially. No matter where you are now, you can hear someone talking on their cell phone. Do we have that much more to share? Is it necessary to report every moment of the day to anyone who might be available? Perhaps we are trying to find someone who will actually take the time to listen. That’s a pretty tall order these days. Since many of us feel overwhelmed and are lacking in the “self care” department. How can we pay attention to what someone is saying when we don’t take the time to listen to ourselves? That’s where silence and solitude come into play. Without them we lose our ability to cultivate an” interior life”. You might want to give yourself permission to just be quiet and still. It will probably be a struggle initially since the mind is often buffeted by sights, sounds and experiences. But, I can guarantee that if you make the effort to honor silence periodically, you will feel more inner peace and tranquility
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