The day will come when, after harnessing the winds, the tides, and gravitation, we shall harness for God the energies of love. And on that day, for the second time in the history of the world, humankind will have discovered fire.
Warm Greetings, dear Friends of Silence! The music of nature encourages our souls to sing along these beautiful days of early summer. I've just completed a landscaping project in my back yard, and each morning now when I wake and open my blinds, I am struck by the beauty of nature's symphony: the silence of early morning, broken only by birdsong, and the humming along of the awakening world. Truly it is "the music of the spheres," as an old and beloved hymn poetically states:
This is my Father's world, and to my listening ears, All nature sings and round me rings the music of the spheres.
It is easy to be so caught up in the everyday tasks of busy lives that we miss the music. We are able to hear that kind of music only when we listen for it with the awareness of open hearts, and then our spirits come alive.
There are songs in stone as well as in sound, which overflow with rejoicing at the bountiful riches of Creation. . . . We need silences to be free from the words that come between us and reality. We need silence to still our chattering minds and focus on the new creation to which we are constantly giving birth. There is a music to silence and a dance within stillness which is lacking in our lives and communities.
This is the greatest skill of all, to take the bitter with the sweet and make it beautiful, to take the whole of life in all its moods, its strengths and weaknesses, and of the whole make one great and celestial harmony.
The houses are clean and white, and great trees stand among them and spread over them. The fields lie around the town, divided by rows of such trees as stand in the town and in the woods, each field more beautiful than all the rest. Over town and fields the one great song sings, and is answered everywhere; every leaf and flower and grass blade sings. And in the fields and the town, walking, standing, or sitting under the trees, resting and talking together in the peace of a Sabbath profound and bright, are people of such beauty that he weeps to see them. He sees that these are the membership of one another and of the place and of the song or light in which they live and move.
"There they go, chanting again." "Maybe that is what really matters," Equitius said. "What? The chanting?" "You. Constantly getting in touch with God. Getting others to do it, too. They sing with their hearts, these people. For all I know, they may keep the world alive by what they're doing."
To see all things at their origin, their beginnings, puts us in kinship with all that lives: trees, birds, stars seem foreign to us only inasmuch as we perceive them outside of our common origin with them. To drink at the source of all that lives and breathes expands the heart and makes the blood sing, echoing of all the vital fluids of the world. To dwell near the beginnings is to draw infinitely near to that which creates both the unity and diversity of all beings.
From the age of six to fourteen I took violin lessons but had no luck with my teachers, for whom music did not transcend mechanical practicing. I really began to learn only after I had fallen in love with Mozart's sonatas. The attempt to reproduce their singular grace compelled me to improve my technique. I believe, on the whole, that love is a better teacher than sense of duty.
~ Albert Einstein, in THE HERON DANCE BOOK OF LOVE AND GRATITUDE
Lying on my back under the starlit sky, I gave myself up completely to the lovely sounds of Irish music. It was a magical sound, I said, beating with my fingers happily and humming the tunes. The music stopped for a few minutes while the musicians rested. As I lay motionless in the silence of the night, I listened to the quiet voice of my heart. "Music is free," it said. "Music belongs to everyone. You only have to listen." Some knowledge is full of bliss.
Mozart's music belongs to all humanity, for the feelings that it expresses are not only his own. Carried to the spiritual elevation that universal symbols require, the symphony is untainted by petty individualism. The music belongs to the world of hope and serenity, not to any particular religion. His work was never a cry but rather a continual revelation. Love, light, and death are one in his music, to such a degree that a single theme sometimes contains all these. Mozart apprehends the human being, their feelings, pain, and hope, then, he leaves us alone in the light, facing the revelation of his own reason for being.
The older we grow, the more we tend to become set in our habits, our outlooks on life, our mental assessments of possibilities. The more flexibly balanced we become, the less chaos we encounter. Harmony is not created by having only one musical tune, but by the blending of many tunes that create a symphony of sound. Individual tunes work together, creating beauty rather than discord. Balance is found in living harmoniously, with flexibility and periods of silence, accepting events as part of the mystery unfolding in our lives.
Greetings, dear Friends of Silence. Each leaf of a tree is an entity unto itself, yet could not exist alone. Each leaf, though separate and individual, is part of the one tree. So each of us is unique, with our own special traits, innate abilities and interests. In all the world, there is no one else exactly like you or me; we are each one of a kind. Yet we are all part of the One, the Whole, the All of creation; we are all one as well as unique individuals. When one is hurt, all of us suffer in some way. When one is demeaned, we are all shamed. And when one of us gains understanding, each of us receives a little more light. Each of us contributes to the growth of all as we work toward our own spiritual maturity. In the Silence, may we continue to gain understanding and evolve as individual parts of the Whole, knowing our oneness with the All.
. . . as I move out into the world, I live out my uniqueness, but when I dare to look into my core, I come upon the one common center where all lives begin. In that center, we are one and the same. In this way, we live out the paradox of being both unique and the same. For mysteriously and powerfully, when I look deep enough into you, I find me, and when you dare to hear my fear in the recess of your heart, you recognize it as your secret that you thought no one else knew. And that unexpected wholeness that is more than each of us, but common to all—that moment of unity is the atom of God.
All this is simply to say that all life is interrelated. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality; tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly. As long as there is poverty in this world, no one can be totally rich even with a billion dollars. As long as diseases are rampant and millions of people cannot expect to live more than twenty or thirty years, no one can be totally healthy, even with a clean bill of health from the finest clinic in America. Strangely enough, I can never be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be. You can never be what you ought to be until I am what I ought to be. This is the way the world is made.
A powerful meditation when contemplating the oneness of everything is to find something's unique qualities. For example, observing an island's wholeness and then focusing upon the uniqueness of a single stone. . . . this meditation is simple but powerful. . . . Other examples to meditate upon (other than an individual stone on the island beach) are faces in a crowd or a leaf on a tree. Each person (in the crowd) is unique and yet (at that very moment) part of the whole. The same is true for leaves on the trees. Practicing this deceptively easy meditation helps each of us to see reality.
We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our fear, our presence automatically liberates others.