Sunday, December 23, 2012
silence + observance.
In the 3rd chapter of the book, he interviews a professional who emphasizes the health benefits of... silence? Uh, yeah. I guess to each his own. Af first, I didn't quite know what to think hanging your academic "hat" on such a mundane topic, but the more I think about it, the more it seems to make sense. The reality is: as I am sitting here, I can identify several noises.
- the Fed-Ex plane flying overhead
- Adelaide's box fan whirring in her bedroom aiding her sleep
- the chirping of birds in the backyard garden next door
- our ancient heat pump working to keep us warm
- the train horns from the railroad tracks at the end of our street
So you know, maybe silence is a good thing. I often wonder if I would observe more in the presence of silence-- I think often because I can hear something so know it's there, I don't have to actually look at it. (This seems really mundane, but I am talking about a unifying human experience here, so it's pertinent to all of you, I guess.)
Earlier this week, I returned from a run through the neighborhood with Adelaide and my next-door neighbor greeted me (in my chest-heaving, desperate for a icy shower, breathless about-to-enter-the-house state). She informed me that her power had been off for about 45 minutes (the entirety of my run) and wanted to know what information I knew about the matter. Having just spent the last almost-hour of my existence cursing my legs, lungs, and generally making the effort just to take another step/breath, I knew nothing about the outage. After hopping in the car to run errands, I realized that I ran right past the power trucks working on the lines-- literally right past them-- and never noticed. How's that for observance?!
I wonder how my life would change if I tried intentionally to observe more, and stopped relying on my assumptions. I think this applies to more than just sight and sound-- how many people do I interact with, but I do not take any notice of them because I am busy thinking about my own concerns?
Living intentionally changes everything; as John chapter three says, "He must be greater, and I must become less."