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The power of silence

BY Marilyn C. Arayata

There’s a story of a farmer who lost his precious watch while working in his barn. The farmer looked for it among the hay. When he became exhausted, he decided to request the children who were playing outside his barn to help him look for the watch – and promised a reward to the one who could find it. The children got tired, but they could not find what they were looking for. When everyone has given up, a little boy asked the farmer for another chance. After some time, the child found the watch. When the farmer asked the little boy how he did it, the latter replied, “I did nothing but sit on the ground and listen. In the silence, I heard the ticking of the watch and just looked for it in that direction.”

There are times when we get and realize what we need when we are quiet. A crowded life is confusing. It is in silence that one can get a fresh perspective. Even in relationships, a cool-off period sometimes helps two parties clarify relationship goals, differences – and decide if they want to give the relationship another try or give it up. Spiritual retreats where participants are requested to “part” with their gadgets, are also beneficial. Spending time away from the madding crowd, from gadgets, and noise of all types, retreat participants get a clearer picture of things, which helps them take purposeful action.

What were those instances when you were simply quiet, and what realizations/lessons, physical and emotional benefits did you get from them?

The demands of this life make it hard for the majority to be still and quiet, but maybe it is the very thing that many of us need at the moment. Try to set aside a specific time each day, even 20 to 30 minutes of quiet time. You will thank yourself for it! Someone said that silence is “refreshment for the soul”. It is “the sleep that nourishes wisdom” (Francis Bacon).

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