Silence is not a nothing, a pure absence, or a mere emptiness. It is the pristine, unspoken Word, the womb of language and of life. It speaks in and to all hearts and throbs in all living things. That is its mystery.
Silence is our essence, as the ‘heart’ is our center – not two.
Silence and space, in their subtle aspects, are, we said, undefinable and unperceivable by the senses. That is so because they are principles, not qualities. Principles (and there is only One, seen as having several aspects, such as sat-chit-ananda) can manifest in the world of multiplicity, but in the highest realm they are unmanifested; thus, unqualified, undefinable, unchangeable
Multiplicity comes into unity in this highest dimension (the realm of “essences”). Here the qualities observed in manifestation are indistinct; they coalesce. Is Love different from Being, or from Beauty? Even here ‘below’ we have a glimpse of their indistinctness, and only intuition can attest to this.
We referred to subtle silence and subtle space, and notice here that there cannot be a significant difference between them. Their manifested qualities, though, can give us a sense of what they stand for. There is the silence of contemplation, e.g. of a sunset or a work of art, and, over and above that, the God Shiva contemplating in utter silence the crystalline primordial waters before the first stirrings of life appear in their midst.
The silence of understanding something, wherein that which is understood dissolves – silence of the mind, where that particular understanding or some, spontaneous, intuition can arise. The silence of the heart, once it has been drained of emotions, of anxiety, or of longing – sobbing subsides in that silence; exhilaration comes to rest there too.
Silence: the womb and cradle of creative imagination, of creative genius.
The silence of peace and contentment… the peace and silence of a smile.
The silence before and after a storm.
The almost sudden silence soon after the sun sets, all birds becoming quiet as if in ‘unison’. The silence of night… The reflection of the moon on a pond or a lake …
All of these can be said to have different connotations, just as the principle of being does. (Will cont.)