The basic lesson in observing is in learning to really "listen". Unfortunately, most of us whenever we are engaged in conversation with others really only half listen. And when we visit the great outdoors and attempt to get in touch with the Creation of Mother Earth -- do we really try to listen to the messages that are being expressed either audibly or inaudibly therein? Probably not. In all these areas of communication perhaps we need to discipline ourselves to learn the art of truly listening. We each need to rediscover that if we fill the silence, we cannot hear the voice of God. Once we have learned to quiet down and "center in", then we can begin to hear the voices of Creation and also that still, small voice within which can only come through when we are earnestly creating an attitude of "silence". Whenever we can actually stop our busy merry-go-rounds occasionally and seek quiet times and places -- we can then hear that inner voice of our Creator speaking to us with great love, comfort and guidance for our lives, as we listen with the ears of the heart and spirit! Inner harmony, peace and spiritual growth can take place when we learn to listen -- and thus receive the "gift of silence".

~ from "The Gift of Silence" by Leslie Wilson in the July 1990 issue of "The Talking Stick" with thanks to Betty Fribance