Mountain quiet calms my thoughts as I settle in to practice on a deserted gravel roadway. It keeps me in the moment, this utter quiet. The external sounds are the birds, the breeze, my feet softly touching the gravel as I quietly run forms. This external quiet without traffic, without radio, without voices, this external quiet allows me to hear the internal quiet: my breath in through my nose, my breath out: my whole body sighing with the relief to letting go; my increased heart beat in my ears tells me to relax muscles; more important than the external, I hear the sounds of the quiet within me, the emptiness, the stillness, the very moment within me. It has a distinct sound, this emptiness; it’s familiar yet too often distant.
This is why I practice: to hear the voice of nothingness and embrace its graceful strength. Here in the deep mountain top quiet surrounded by more trees and birds than cars and people, it is easy to hear the inner silence. I am reminded how precious a gift that I can take that sound of stillness with me back into the traffic, back into the city, back into the noise of the external world that in the end means so little to my soul’s delight.
Blessed by the clean air, fortified by a less filtered light from above, the soft pink gray clouds of sunset massage the mountain shoulders of the Earth that is breathing through these trees and singing through these birds. In silence we can perceive the Earth for what she truly is: a larger reflection of ourselves. We share with the Earth the same proportion of salt water to solid, the same cores of energy within in the burning fires of our dan tiens, neither the Earth nor ourselves can exist in isolation-we are both symbiotic creatures; the energy or qi of the body can be traced through meridians and accupoints as can the Earth’s energy be traced through ley lines and EMF vortexes; the left hemisphere/brain in the cultures of the West are yang while the right brain/hemisphere is reflected in the Eastern more yin cultures. When the Earth breathes, we can breathe; both of us have circulatory systems, operate in cycles and are both capable of profound gentleness and extreme violence. We are the same. We are one, us and the Earth.
Find your quiet mountain shoulder to lean on. Go there in your mind. Stand with me, relax the Earth has you, let’s breathe together and simply be. The quiet is complete as the mountain’s curves and coves absorb distant sounds. Can you hear the quietness at your heart’s center? What does it say to you? Are you listening? Breathe with the Earth. Breathe with us all. We are all One here. There is no more room for hate, judgment, envy or greed. Upon the strong shoulders of the world, we breathe the Love of One breath, One heart, One peace. Be still and know. We are all One.