Be silent and listen.

“The inspiration you seek is already within you.
Be silent and listen.”

– Rumi

When Rumi advises us to “be silent and listen”, what are we listening for? 

There’s good reason why he doesn’t tell us. Because it can’t be told. It can’t be taught. It can only be pointed to. 

If you take Rumi’s advice, be silent and listen, and just sit, in meditation, or to just be in stillness, if this is your first time. It can take a while just to get familiar with coming to a place of silence. First, we must get familiar with outer silence, the cessation of speech, and indiscriminating chatter. To then come to a place of inner silence, where the inner chatter falls away from our attention, takes many people longer. But it needn’t be this way.

That silence is always there, within you.

Be silent, and listen

When first you listen, there will be noise, madness, mayhem, all the fire of the mind will be there. But the very nature of this listening, which may be different than your usual listening, is to listen without engagement with that which you are listening to. Listen, hear, notice, but do not pay attention to what you notice. Just be in detached awareness of it. 

In time, you will come to recognise just what a noisy place your mind is, and that it’s activity is not arising from you, the observer, listening in awareness. 

Be silent, and listen.

Just this is enough to bring you to the present moment, to awareness, to bring you to awakening.

Just this.

Be silent, and listen.