The Gift That Silence Brings - Contemplative Journal

The Gift That Silence Brings

The Gift That Silence Brings

More and more, I’ve found myself drawn toward the silence. There must be a part of me that knows I cannot find the answers I am seeking until I can be quiet enough to listen to my heart. If I can hear my heart speaking, sooner or later it will lead me to my soul. That, of course, is where I will find my deepest truth.

Following the Call

It is so easy to lose touch with who we are. Obligations, commitments, family all demand our attention. Finding time to get in touch with who we really are requires stepping away from hurried schedules, not once but often. Only when we pause and turn within will we find our more authentic self, and thus the peace we seek.

The Art of Non-Doing

If you aren’t sure how to go within, you could begin by giving yourself the space you need to think your own thoughts. Better yet, listen to the leadings of your heart and follow those leadings, wherever they want to take you.

Spend time with Nature. Rest in the presence of the trees and flowers. Commune with them. Gaze at a sunset until time disappears. Listen to the quiet spaces within you until they wrap themselves around you. You can do that. We all can do that, and would, if we only knew how healing real quietude can be.

Silence is deep, you know. It is even deeper than deep, and it is kept secure in that vast reservoir within us where we consciously connect with All That Is.

Embracing the Silence

So much happens when we give ourselves a chance to just be. It is in our non-doing, our simply being aware, that the experience evolves, that the peace comes, the healing occurs, and the answers are revealed. Whether we know it or not, it is silence we are seeking, and it is in the silence that we are found.

To know the silence, you must first experience it. Just as there is a vast difference between seeing a cool, clear stream and drinking from it, so it is with silence. You can read about it. You can write about it. You can honor it in so many ways, but until you enter into it, you will never experience its healing power, nor will you know the transforming difference deep inner stillness can make in every area of your life.

While there are no road maps to follow, meditation can be an excellent guide. It can help you open to a level of stillness where there is no thought. When that happens, the peace you find gradually becomes part of the rhythm of your life.

A Necessary Pause

When did we lose touch with life’s natural rhythm? When did we cease to hear the song within us? How could we have forgotten the silence that is our sanctuary?

When we need comfort, where do we find it? In the silence. When we need to reconnect with our self and with our Source, again it is in the silence that it happens. How else are we to come to that place of remembering? How else can we rediscover the meaning of our life and why we came here?

Going into the silence is a lot like going to the sea. If you love the sea like I do, then you know the excitement I feel when I first smell the fresh, coastal air. I know the ocean is not far away, and I can hardly wait to immerse myself in its wonderful ambiance. Silence is a lot like that. Having once experienced its all-supporting embrace, we are drawn to it again and again.

Silence is as important as food and shelter. In fact, it is the very essence of food and shelter for us on a much deeper level. In the silence, we experience the eternality of our nature, the infinity of our soul. It is there we begin to understand that we are part of All That Is.

The Magic of Silence

Silence is all around us. It is the magic of a star-filled night. It is the hush of dawn, the quiet peace of a rainbow. The beauty of this deep peace is that nothing else needs to happen for this moment to be complete.

How many times have we felt that this moment, this very one, was complete? That it was all it could be? That it was all we could hope for? That is the strange thing about silence. It fills us, even to overflowing. It feeds us. It quiets and heals us. Yes, and it enfolds us.

The Choice Is Ours

There are so many things crying for our attention. How can we find room for silence, too? Author Annie Dillard understood this conflict, and this was her answer: “At a certain point you say to the woods, to the sea, to the mountains, to the world, ‘Now I am ready. Now I will stop and be wholly attentive.’”

And so you go within. Again and again. While it may seem as though nothing is happening, actually everything is happening. Your soul starts to wake up. A knowing grows within you which you cannot explain but which is very real. And life begins to flow for you. All because you were still. Truly still.

That is when the shift happens. Your new perspective becomes your balance point as you bring your outer life in sync with your inner life, with that place of stability where everything is as it should be, all the time.

Yes, choices are all around us. It is up to each one of us to decide which call to follow. Our spirit knows, and if we are willing, it will teach us how to cultivate the melody that only our soul can sing, but we must listen. We must pay attention. If we do, one day, when we least expect it, the moment will happen. Unannounced and unexpected, pure silence will enter our awareness. Then we realize at last that we are already complete, that what we need has always been within us.

Therein lies the mercy, and the gift, that silence brings.

Editor’s note: The featured image is “Enjoy the Silence …” by Thomas Leuthard. It is reused here under a Creative Commons 2.0 by-attribution license.

Donna Miesbach
Donna Miesbach

Donna Miesbach has been writing for Contemplative Journal since 2014. Now she has joined our online teaching staff with her course, Moving Through Grief, A Guide to Inner Wholeness. For over thirty years, Donna Miesbach’s inspirational poems and articles have reached around the globe through such venues as Unity Magazine, Daily Word, Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul II, Ideals, and the Cup of Comfort book series. Donna is the award-winning author of From Grief to Joy, A Journey Back to Life & Living. She was a featured author in Wise Women Speak, 20 Ways to Turn Stumbling Blocks into Stepping Stones. Among her other books are the Tools for Teens program and Trails of Stardust, Poems of Inspiration and Insight. In 1985, she was named Inspirational Poet of the Year by The Poet Magazine. Donna also co-authored Coaching for a Bigger Win, A Playbook for Coaches, and Coaching Character and Leadership, A Playbook for Parents, with Greg Roeszler, Founder and Executive Director of Playmakers Mentoring Foundation, Sacramento CA. Donna has studied extensively with Dr. Deepak Chopra, Dr. David Simon, Dr. David Morehouse, Jonathan Goldman and Roger Gabriel, and is a certified Chopra Center Meditation & Yoga Instructor. Donna lives and teaches in Omaha NE. For more information, please go to