Tag Archives: Stillness

Move in Peace

23 Jul

“Being still does not mean don’t move. It means move in peace.”
― E’yen A. Gardner

How to be Still?

21 May

How to be Still
When the Earth is spinning?

How to be Still
When Time is running?

How to be Still
When moments are passing?

How to be Still
When thoughts are racing?

In the Stillness, I Remembered

10 May

Today, I stopped for ten minutes, and I suddenly remembered why I was here.

I stepped out onto the balcony, and, as the fresh smell of wet earth hit my nostrils, I realised that this was the first time in months that I’d paid attention to my immediate surroundings.

I stood in silence – smelling, listening, looking.

I smelt the earth, the grass, the rain, and I remembered that I am living in a place with abundant and beautiful nature.

I heard children laughing, birds chirping and a rooster calling, and I remembered that I am living in a place full of simple joys.

I saw clouds gliding slowly across a blue sky, and I remembered that I am living in a place of peace.

The trees were barely breathing and the magnificent sun lit up the remaining drops of rain on the leaves, giving the impression that all the trees were covered in jewels.

Ten minutes of silence, ten minutes of stillness – that’s all it took for me to remember.

For months I’d been unhappy, unfulfilled and confused. For months my thoughts had been on the future – on what I should and could do to be happier, on where I should and could go to be more fulfilled, on whom I should and could meet to see things clearer. For months my thoughts have been on vague plans, on vague people, on vague possibilities. For months, I have been seeking happiness and fulfilment everywhere but here and now.

And then today, I stood still in silence for ten minutes and I remembered…

I am here, in this place, because I wanted to be somewhere quiet.

I am here, because I wanted to be close to nature.

I am here, because I wanted to be near the sea.

I am here, because I wanted a calm life.

I am here, because I wanted to live simply.

I am here, because I wanted to experience all of these things with the person I love.

I am here, because it was my dream to be here.

Funny, how we forget such important things in the rush of daily life.

What will YOU remember in ten minutes of silence?

Love, Happiness and Stillness

8 May

I don’t know about you, but I need an excuse before I can ‘allow myself’ to do nothing – a cold, a broken computer, a problem with the transport. Paradoxically, these problems transform themselves into miracles as I think “Wow, I can spend the whole day doing nothing; I can spend the whole day just reading!”

Like most Westerners, I fill my days with many tasks and activities. And, unfortunately, like many Westerners, I am active because I feel like I should be active. I prioritise what I believe I should do, and not what I would like to do (and please note that should is not equal to must). I am like a wind-up toy: I can be Superwoman for a week, only to lose my powers and go back to being a drained zombie thereafter. I used to feel bad for not being able to keep my energy up, yet it’s hardly surprising considering that my energy is spent on things that give me no joy or fulfillment in return.

I know that I am not the only one in this situation. Many Westerners overwork, give themselves task upon task to do and prioritise action above all else. We are all driven by different motives, but I believe that our main motive is the yearning for love. We all want to be loved, and society now says that to be loved you need to be successful, rich and important. So we spend our time and energy doing tasks that will earn us more money and therefore more status and more recognition, with the false idea that these will bring love and happiness into our lives.

But isn’t it ironic that we are too ashamed to admit openly that what we seek is love and happiness? We rarely get straight to the point by doing something that would directly and immediately create love and happiness.

A home-made meal for two, an afternoon on the sofa with a book, a walk in the woods, an evening playing Pictionary with family, a hand-made card, a bright dress, making collages with friends, redecorating the house, drinking wine on the balcony, dancing in your bedroom…

Our capitalist world has made us believe that love and happiness can only come about from wealth and success, and therefore, from hard-work. Yet wealth and success count little for love and happiness.

Love and happiness are right in front of us.

In order to notice them, all we need to do is stop moving, stop rushing, stop doing.

Through stillness we will come to understand that happiness and love are not goals or ends, but states of being – here and now.

“When you rest in quietness and your image of yourself fades, and your image of the world fades, and your ideas of others fade, what’s left? A brightness, a radiant emptiness that is simply what you are.” ~ Adyashanti

A True Moment of Peace

29 Apr

It was a mild and clear evening today; I had dinner on the balcony and decided to stay outside until it got dark. Legs crossed in half-lotus, I sat and watched.

I watched aeroplanes draw pink lines across a blue backdrop. I watched the leaves on the trees wave gently to me. I watched a thin purple cloud spread its thin limbs for the night in a comfortable place in the sky. I watched the wind play hide and seek between the branches. I watched the sky put on its grey pyjamas. I watched the trees fall asleep when the wind got tired of playing with them. I watched pollen float from left to right, as if unable to make up its mind about where to land.

There were sounds too, of course. Leaves whispering secrets to each other before lights out, birds singing lullabies, and dogs tiptoeing outside the house.

As I sat watching and listening, I lost track of time. Was I outside for ten or twenty minutes? Or perhaps I was there for half an hour?

Absorbed by nature, I felt myself extending into its vastness. During this moment, I felt open, still and quiet, just like the trees, the grass and the sky around me. I was meditating without knowing it.

By taking a rare opportunity to observe a tranquil evening, I got a rare experience in return: a true moment of peace.