Intentional Disingagement

Have you ever gone someplace to listen to the silence?  I wasn't looking for that when I ascended a peak overlooking the majestic Weimea Canyon, the "grand canyon" of Hawaii.  At that moment there was total silence.  Almost 5000 feet below I could see but not hear the white water of ocean waves crashing on the shore. 

Escaping from all external noise is getting harder and harder to do.  Finding a place away from cell phone service and the incessant electronic sounds of current life requires intent.

Rick Hanson, Ph.D., author of Buddha's Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love and Wisdom wrote, in his recent weekly newsletter, about taking pleasure from your senses.  According to him, paying attention to certain sounds can intensify pleasure.  He suggests the sound of "waves on the seashore . . . and silence itself," which seems to me the most difficult to find.

As I bask in the quiet of the mountain top I wonder how else to find this blissful state when the experience of the moment is a distant memory?  It could be as simple as taking a time-out from electronic chatter - no phones, computers, TV, radio, and for the moment no sounds of people or animals begging for attention.  Ten minutes will do.  Try ear plugs if necessary.

Notice the quiet.  Relax into it.  Let your observations and internal talk come and go.  Return to the silence and for me the memory of traveling to that awesome mountain top.

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