Wednesday, May 10, 2006

An Alive Stillness

Last night I decided to sleep with the windows and the blinds open because for the first time this season I could hear crickets chirping, and the moonlight on the tree outside my window was lighting up the leaves and windowsill in such a beautiful way. Sometime in the middle of the night, I was startled awake by a sound. An owl was calling out in the woods right behind our house. Twice, three times. An eerie, other-worldly sound. A few minutes later, I heard a plop! which sounded like it happened right beside my head. It was the frog in the pond right outside my window.

When I opened my eyes at 6:00am, my ears were already full of the sounds of the morning. Songbirds--many songbirds--were already greeting the day. A woodpecker knocked on a tree not far away. The frog was making that low chiiiii--rup sound. I sat up and stretched, and thought about the difference between silence--the lack or sound--and stillness, a sense of harmony that occurs in listening, waiting, participating in the moment.

It's interesting to me how all these joyful, life-filled sounds arise and return to stillness. It's the underlying harmony of all things. Stillness is not lack of sound but the full potential of all sound. Our spirits rise and rest in stillness. Our love radiates from stillness. Our laughter erupts from stillness. And our prayers spread and smooth and expand the stillness, rippling it calmly outward in an embrace for the entire world.

Blessings on your day!

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