The Wisdom Found in the Sound of Silence

Taking a break from the noise that surrounds us, even if only for a moment, can help us hear the secrets we can only learn in the sound of silence.

I am happy.

In this moment I hear that strange sound that accompanies silence. It’s a sound that comes from inside my own head and I don’t know how to describe it, except to say that it’s the beautiful sound of silence. I can put my fingers in my ears and still hear it. Oddly enough, the world around me isn’t silent. There is a clock ticking, a fridge humming, a cat outside meowing into the night, bamboo chimes clanging out on the porch, and yet, I hear the sound of silence.

I breathe in and am thankful for my breath, for life. Every second that has come before has brought me here and there has never been another moment exactly like this one, nor shall there ever be another. Some are similar but this one is this one and my particular thoughts in this moment will never be precisely the same again nor have they ever been precisely the same.

Today I pulled up to an ATM and I saw myself in the side mirror of my car. My immediate reaction was, “You’re pretty.” I smiled. My face is not flawless, but my first reaction to my reflection was akin to the reaction of seeing a brilliant blue bird sitting on the fence post, or seeing a dogwood in full bloom, or watching a waterfall tumble over the cliffs. It wasn’t a television, photo-shopped, Instagram kind of beauty that caused my heart to leap with joy upon seeing my own reflection but it was that same kind of elation, joy and appreciation I feel when I look at the wonders of nature. I fully, in that instant (and now as a result of that instant) understood what the Psalmist said in the Bible when he wrote, “I am fearfully and wonderfully made.” Wow. I am. I am a thing of nature, just like a bluebird, or a dogwood or a waterfall. I am wonderfully made, a unique creation and so are you. I don’t need anyone’s temporal validation because I am internally and eternally validated.

Yesterday, as I was driving back from taking my artwork to a show in another town, about an hour and a half away, I watched the sun, settling behind the trees, getting ready to sink below the horizon and I realized that I was completely happy. No person had made me happy. No circumstance had made me happy. I wasn’t thinking of anything that had happened to me before in my life nor was I thinking of anything that might or might not happen in the future. I was thinking only of the moment, of the pleasure of driving on a country road, of the golden sun, of the quietness around me and then I realized that I was filled with joy and overcome with the beautiful sound of silence. I turned off my stereo so that I could better hear the sound of silence and it was musical, refreshing, delightful. My inner being, my spirit, felt like it was flying. I completely appreciated the moment and the world around me and in doing so, I realized that I am completely loved and was completely connected to I Am, Creator.

Once, a long time ago, my little brother accused me of just being “lucky,” exclaiming that every thing just always worked out for me. Well, now, after all these years, I realize that he was right. Everything is always working out for me. It’s like Paul said in the book of Romans, “…all things work together for the good of those who love the Lord and who are called according to his purpose.” Well, guess what? All things means all things and work together for the good means that all things are working out for me and called according to his purpose means that it’s Great I Am’s plan and intent for it to be that way. So, yep, all things are working out for me all the time. I am fearfully and wonderfully made. I am happy. I am loved. I don’t have to strive or work toward perfection or try to earn God’s favor. All I have to do is receive. Every good and perfect gift comes from above. You can’t earn a gift. You can only be in receptive mode and receive it. So, I don’t believe I was born under a lucky star or a perfect astrological sign. I believe that I am fearfully (awe-inspiring) and wonderfully made and that I am an offspring of the Great I Am who loves me and wants to give me an abundant life. I can’t earn it. I can only accept it (receive) or reject it. When we keep trying to earn it, we are not receiving. It’s like trying to climb a ladder to get what’s already been placed on ground level.

 

Lessons from Squirrels

Learning from squirrels.

I am thinking about the little squirrels that live in my yard. Each autumn I watch them store up food for the coming winter. They store food for one year at a time, not ten years at a time. I once heard a minister say that to constantly try to “keep” everything was to have a poverty mentality, some fear that you might need it someday and therefore, it was to say that you don’t believe I Am is enough. But I Am is El Shaddai, more than enough.

Thoughts from the Tao Te Ching:

Putting a value on status will create contentiousness.

If you overvalue possessions, people begin to steal.

By not displaying what is desirable, you will

cause the people’s hearts to remain undisturbed. The sage governs by emptying minds and hearts,

by weakening ambitions and strengthening bones.

Practice not doing. . . .

When action is pure and selfless, everything settles into its own perfect place.

Dyer, Wayne W.. Living the Wisdom of the Tao (p. 9). Hay House. Kindle Edition.

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WHAT JESUS HAD TO SAY ABOUT IT:

19 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal.

20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:

21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

Matthew 6:19-21

King James Version

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Placing too much value on status really does create contention. When you exalt someone because they are pretty or born wealthy or famous or smart, you immediately stir up strife, especially if you undervalue the people who are there for you every day, making life happen.

Virtue. Restraint. Integrity. 

Those words seem to have fallen out of favor in our mainstream culture, at least here in America. I love my country so don’t take this the wrong way, but we are an abundantly blessed nation, and we are an abundantly WASTEFUL nation. We have sheds, storage units, houses and garages filled with clothes we never wear, purses we never carry, shoes we never walk in, furniture we never sit on, dishes we never eat out of, toys our kids never play with and books we never read.

LIVE abundantly, not hoard abundantly.

I believe in abundance. I believe we are meant to have all that we need and want in this life, but abundance is not equivalent to waste. There’s a story in the New Testament where Jesus talks about a man who had immense wealth and instead of using his excess for good, he just decided to build more barns to house all his belongings, then he died and took nothing with him. The whole point in having belongings is LIVE abundantly, not hoard abundantly. Live is an action word.

The first shall be last.

I notice that the Tao Te Ching talks about not showing off one’s stuff and not pushing to get ahead. This goes so against the way our society has been set up through the years. We’re taught to work hard and push our way to the top, but what if the top is really the bottom? Jesus talked about how when a person comes in and seeks to have the seat of honor that he will be removed and the seat given to another. What if trying to be “first” became unimportant to us?

I teach and inevitably every time the kids line up to go anywhere there’s that one kid (sometimes more) that will run and push to be first. I always send that kid to the back of the line, pick some child who simply lined up and put that one at the head of the line and then I’ll say, “The first shall be last and the last shall be first.” The kid who pushed and tried to be first will always say, “What does that mean?” I simply smile and say, “You think about it and figure that out.” Maybe, the answer is found in the idea that he who exalts himself shall be humbled and he who humbles himself shall be exalted. So, whatever we do, if it comes from a place of pure selflessness, it is God’s way and that therefore, it will work out just as it should.

You Harvest what you Plant

Photo by Du01b0u01a1ng Nhu00e2n on Pexels.com

You can never harvest beans by planting tomatoes. At least that’s been my experience. Every time I plant beans I get beans, unless the groundhogs get them first. When I plant corn, I get corn, tomato seeds yield tomatoes, squash seeds give me squash and so on. No matter what kind of seed I put in the ground, that’s exactly the kind of plant that comes up. That seems to be a law of the natural universe. It’s also a law of the spiritual universe. You harvest what you plant.

If you saw a person planting pumpkins and expecting carrots you’d probably think they were a little wonky in the head! Yet, we do it all the time in the spirit realm.

Consider the following:

When I was in college I complained to my beloved Art professor one day that I had no friends. She replied, “He who hath friends must show himself friendly.” I realized it was true. I developed a little philosophy based off my discoveries through the exercise of showing myself friendly.

With one statement that professor taught me a bit about the Law of Reaping and Sowing, also known in some circles as the Law of Attraction. If you see yourself as being lonely then you will be lonely but if you become friendly, you will have friends. If you want everyone to think you’re interesting, then show interest in them.

You can’t sow complaints and reap joy. You can’t sow lies and reap truth. You can’t sow hatred and reap love. You can’t sow drama and reap peace.

In the Book of Hebrews, the Apostle Paul says, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not see.” He goes on to say, “Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.” Hebrews 11:1 & 3 (NIV) In Romans, he said that God had called the things which were not as if though they were.

The truth is that it’s a little more than just saying something. It’s having a joyous feeling, an excitement, when you say it. Don’t dwell on it. Don’t fixate on it. Speak into life, be thankful, then go about your business doing other stuff and in time, it will come to pass and you will get to rejoice a second time! In the same way, if we have a negative feeling when we speak a thing, we can literally call unpleasant things into our lives by our words and the spiritual vibration or expectation that accompanies those words.

Here’s another way to look at it. Truth or reality is based on the credence or mental acceptance of what one perceives; this mental acceptance is the essence, confidence and assurance, the absolute foundation, that brings into tangible manifestations objects and events that are expected into fruition. In other words, if we believe it and rejoice as if though we already have it then it will manifest in our lives. We don’t have to know the specifics, just that it’s as good as done.

If you sow seeds of earnest expectation with a thankful heart then you will reap crops that are only limited by your imagination.