“Silence is the true friend who never betrays.”
This one little sentence seems to hold many meanings. I wondered what Confucius was trying to teach in these few words, and so I researched it. Two items surfaced for me.
First, Confucius taught about the merits of recollection, introspection and deep thinking – he used the word “silence” to describe this process.
Second, Confucius taught that actions are much more powerful than words. Silence–not saying anything–was just fine, as it is our actions which define us and make us more or less valuable to ourselves and others.
Combining these two items could mean that using recollection and deep thinking can bring us to the truth of situations and help us to devise reactions and/or solutions. Staying silent and acting out those solutions makes our reactions unmistakable. Spoken words will not interfere with actions that can be seen and felt.
Confucius intrigues me! I will be reading his wisdom more regularly.
“Those who know
do not talk.
Those who talk
do not know.”
– Tao Te Ching
I readily admit, I ripped this off my Tao Te Ching (as translated by Wayne Dyer) perpetual calendar today. It struck a chord.
Here at Talking With The Creator, I affirm our need and ability to speak directly with the energy behind all of creation who has been given thousands of names. We who delve deeply into our quiet depths and learn from our Source know much. We know what newspapers cannot tell us. We know what our five senses could never pick up. We know truth–not, “THE Truth,” as if such a thing existed. We know what is true and right for ourselves in each situation and in each moment.
We do not talk about this. The closest I’ve ever come to talking about my conversations with God are in this forum, to you who share this interest and hopefully, this gift. You are the safest audience.
The Tao says, “Those who talk do not know.” And how true that is! We are seemingly outnumbered by those who cannot enjoy silence. Their egos are loud in their own heads. They must speak out publicly. Their lack of confidence and their need for assurance is often evident. Some months back, a friend admitted to me that he gets apprehensive if people don’t start “Liking” his Facebook posts within a few minutes of posting. I can’t say I’ve ever had that experience.
In our world of instantaneous messaging and ubiquitous social media, it can feel like you’re out of the loop if you’re not in constant communication on your favorite device. But don’t be fooled. The news that will keep your life on solid footing is not floating around the Internet. It is in the silent conversations with your Creator.
First, let me begin by saying I am not trying to start a “Which is better, cats or dogs?” argument! I won’t even reveal my preference, though I do have one.
Regardless of YOUR preference, take a little time today to observe your pet. If you don’t have one, no worries, a trip to the pet store or just a little bird-watching out your window will work fine.
Animals show us the beauty of letting go and letting things be. They know who they are. They know their purpose in life. Ever tried to coax a cat into chewing on a bone? It’s just not what they do. On the other hand, a dog will come alert at the slightest motion or sound where a cat can appear to sleep through a house renovation!
Neither dogs nor cats try to keep themselves busy. They don’t worry about tomorrow. They don’t rethink yesterday. They live in the moment: Do I need to do something? No, then I’ll rest until I do.
Allow your pet to give YOU some training today – you’ll be glad you did!
“The mandala is an archetypal image whose occurrence is attested throughout the ages. It signifies the wholeness of the Self. This circular image represents the wholeness of the psychic ground or, to put it in mythic terms, the divinity incarnate in man.”
– Carl Jung (1875 – 1961 CE)
The word “mandala” is Sanskrit, and its meaning is “circle.” Mandalas are tools used especially by Hindus, Buddhists and followers of Jainism for the purpose of entering into meditation. By staring at or creating a mandala, one can empty one’s mind.
The mandala has two representations: the first is a symbol of the universe, and the second is the internal mind as it quiets itself for meditation. While I am in no way an expert on how mandalas work, I am certainly a fan of them. Something about looking at one is very soothing to me.
By going to Google Images and searching for “mandala,” one can find numerous blank mandalas for coloring. Another possibility is one of the many mandala coloring books available, including The Mandala Coloring Book by Jim Gogarty. A search at Amazon will reveal many more.
Getting into the gap for talking with The Creator of All is much easier when one’s mind is quiet, and mandalas are a time-tested tool for making that happen.
Meditation is not a way of making your mind quiet. It’s a way of entering into the quiet that’s already there – buried under the 50,000 thoughts the average person thinks every day. – Deepak Chopra
“Enter into the quiet that’s already there.” Peace, tranquility, and stillness are always with us, all the time. Taking your active, open mind to your quiet place is kind of like the days when it was common for people to get water by lowering a bucket into a well. The well could be so deep that it was difficult to see where the level of the water was. And just as we cannot survive without fresh water, we struggle in our lives when we do not access our inner quiet.
Our “50,000 thoughts” make it difficult for many of us to acknowledge that we have quiet within us. Like water in a deep well, we may wonder if we can access quiet. We can. As one dips a bucket into a well on a regular basis and learns how to do it, we can practice going deep into ourselves to find quiet.
One of my many teachers taught me to listen for the silence. In any environment, there are breaks in the noise. I challenge you, too, to focus on finding silent moments — perhaps, milliseconds — wherever you are right now. Use your active, listening mind to find them.
How do you feel? Are you breathing more easily? Do you have a change in emotions? Are you asleep? (big grin) Yes, when our bodies are worn out and we meditate, we fall asleep. Don’t worry about that. Meditation actually provides energy and healing to a tired body. Sleep as a result of meditation is only temporary, and the sooner your body rejuvenates, the sooner your meditation will bring you (awake) to your inner quiet. And you’ll be that much closer to Talking With The Creator!
Please help me welcome my first guest blogger. She is 11 years old, her parents are students of spirituality, and her mom speaks with The Creator on a regular basis, as well. What she shares not only will help other children connect, but also adults connect, too.
“Everyone can talk to G-d, they just have to have the patience and have the sense of mind that they can do it. A trick for me in talking to G-d is to go to a comfortable place and quiet place such as my bedroom. You need to make it quiet, because he/she has a very quiet voice. You really have to stay focused on talking with him/her; if you get distracted, it will be harder to hear. G-d helps me with things I’m worried about and even if I just want someone to talk to.”
– D.M., 11 years old
The gift of helping our children talk with The Creator has no limits. It is a gift they will never outgrow, can always use and can even pass down to the next generation. Why not help your children connect to The Creator of All? Like in any situation, the teacher becomes even more adept at the subject he/she teaches!
Verse 35 from the Tao Te Ching
Written by Lao Tzu (ca. 6th Century BCE). Translation by Michael Rossman (1940-2008). View the entire text here.
Grasp the formless form
and the world comes to you.
All come to you unharmed
for peace, security, rest.
Music and tidbits
tempt the passerby to pause.
By mouth the way
it can’t be seen,
it can’t be heard.
but use doesn’t exhaust it.
It is clear that the “formless form” and “the way” refer to what I call The Creator of All. In spiritual circles and many religious ones, too, becoming quiet is prescribed for bringing peace, creativity and power to one’s self.
Franz Kafka (1883-1924) wrote, “You need not leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. You need not even listen, simply wait. You need not even wait, just learn to become quiet, and still, and solitary. The world will offer itself to you be unmasked. It has no choice; it will roll in ecstasy at your feet.”