Let me be (quiet)!
“Renee..stop being so quiet”
I’ve heard this more than a few times throughout my life.
I’ve always been quiet. I’ve never been quite as shy, though, as people have assumed. When I was younger, and still a bit of this lingers, I’d be somewhat hesitant to open up around those I was not yet familiar with. Even with those I know well, I have still been accused of being too quiet. I find it exceedingly silly though, that it’s usually assumed I’m quiet because I’m uncomfortable, when in reality it’s others who are uncomfortable with my quiet.
I find that, as I continue on this spiritual journey and practice living in the present moment, even though I am becoming more connected to others, less fearful of strangers and more comfortable with myself and the things I have to say, I am actually becoming MORE quiet. Why wouldn’t it be the other way around?
This is because when we quiet our minds, and become fully present in the moment, we become pure experience. There remains much less to be said. What we say comes from our already firmly planted thoughts, our past experiences, and our feelings, making up a certain viewpoint by which to see the event or conversation. But, when we shut this off, there is no viewpoint, there is no judgement, there is only careful, peaceful consideration and focus on the actual nature of things. When our thoughts take over and our viewpoints are inserted, the nature of what is becomes skewed.
Some folks become very uncomfortable in the midst of quiet. You do know that the problem lies within yourself, yes? Me, over here? The quiet one? I’m just fine. In fact if you bring up a topic I’m interested in, you can be assured, if I have something to say, I will say it. If I feel like something is being missed, someone needs to be challenged, or I have a genuine idea to add, then I’ll add it. But many day-to-day conversations don’t require this. So why should I add something if It’s not needed? I don’t believe in furthering a conversation for the sake of others comfort, to avoid that dreaded silent moment. Nor do I feel I must add something so that others know I’m “okay”.
I enjoy the shit out of the silent moments. These moments are especially powerful when with another, when two parties or more are enjoying the same thing. I find this quite beautiful, and it lends a greater connection than words can produce. Silence is a wonderful gift.
We’ve evolved into a language speaking species, to make sense of our world and define what it is we are sensing. An apple is not an apple. We hear “apple” and we think, juicy, crunchy, red and round. This is a universal fact, but it is not a universal truth. The term “apple” only applies to the thoughts and ideas we have given an apple, not what an apple actually is. Words can’t describe what an apple actually is. What was an apple before it was described with human language? It just was.
Our entire lives are played out in this world of decided terms. And much of what our ancestors have decided the world is has been naively agreed upon without question, such as religious doctrine, what it means to be human, what we should be striving for and why. Some go through life never even questioning the morals and values of those who came before them. This is a scary thought!
“Languages became necessary but in the process the mind lost many of its natural instincts and in particular the ability to actually sense the environment from moment to moment. By overvaluing acquired knowledge and beliefs the mind tends to suppress this sensual and natural ability because the mind has evolved so that it experiences the present by using knowledge that is relative to a past dimension.” -http://www.universalconsciousness.com.au/
We are a part of nature. The rest of nature is living in the universal truth, it’s not analyzing the past and present to make sense of the now. It responds immediately to changes in its environment with its natural, inherent ability to do so. We have this same ability. Intuition, non-thought feeling. But with language and identifying, we have shrouded this ability in a muddle of thoughts.
I relish long-lasting, deep conversations, meaningful words, and free-flowing speech amongst friends. But much of the time, I simply enjoy being the silent observer.
I’m releasing all of the junk, freeing up some space in my mind for just being, and am better off for it. So, if I’m not talking and you are worried I am uncomfortable, shy, awkward or scared, well, it’s probably just you.