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Practicing Silence

Opposite from general opinion, feeling peaceful is not something exceptional and it is not reserved only for some people. It is not even a human destination, a goal, which we have to reach. It is rather a human core, which got contaminated with internal and external factors.

This core is like a fruitful soil, which allows seeds to reach their own potentials and growth toward unexpected heights. But as any soil, so this one needs maintenance and care. Erosion and infertility need to be prevented, weeds need to be taken out, water and sun provided when needed.

Silence practice helps returning to this core. But, depending on the inner state, silence can bring upon positive and negative aspects and range of destructive feelings may be experienced. Still, no matter if one feel boredom, impatience or fear, anger or sadness, eventually peace will reappear.

Practicing silence does not mean to abound only spoken words. One has to quite inner stories too. To disengage in mind’s monologs, dialogs or movie shows. One should just breathe. Without judgements even when the inner storms are scary and external sounds seam to disperse all over the mind. One has to keep aware breathing without holding anything, not feelings, not thoughts, not pain, not even the breath. Just letting all go.

Practical points during silence retreat:

  • Minimise external impulses. Lower your eyes when walking and focus on breath.

  • Be aware of everyone around you without affection, waving, chatting.

  • Show your respect to other practitioners by folding your hands together.

  • Don’t keep your eyes locked to another person.

  • Don’t expect anything in return: no greeting, no gratitude, not love. Such expectations are just traps of your Ego, which wants to be loved, respected or approved.

  • Be aware of your own action, your own respect, your own gratitude and love but do not hold on your respectful act, either. Just let it go.

  • Keep silent awareness during entire session.

  • Try to prolong practice on your way home

#silence #zazen

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