RYAN ALTMAN

🤫 6 Ways Silence Can Transform Your Life

Hope you’re well wherever this email reaches you. Not sure if you noticed, but I added a read time to this email (it’s 6 minutes in case you missed it.) The subtle power of silence is one of the most misunderstood aspects of life. For most, silence is nothing. A lack. An absence to be filled with something. Worst of all–it’s boring!

It’s no surprise that silence is misunderstood given how extroverted, disconnected and over stimulated we’ve become.

It’s a noisy world out there.

We live in increasingly crowded urban areas, and live busier and busier lives.

There’s endless distractions at hand through our cellphones.

Everyone’s plugged in.

This isn’t changing anytime soon. On the contrary, it’s only getting worse.

We’ve become disconnected from silence, and as a result ourselves.

Our mind’s have become so conditioned to external activity and stimulation that we lack the subtlety to understand the nature of silence.

The type of silence I’m referring to isn’t just the silence of nature or our environment, although these can be helpful too. What I’m referring to is meditative silence.

Silence is true meditation.

It’s the result of progressively quieting the layers of our being, and abiding quietly within.

This type of silence is the deepest we can access, and it’s in this silence that its true transformative power is revealed.

With this in mind, I want to share with you 6 ways silence can cut through the noise, and transform your life.

Let’s go!

1. Silence heals your body, mind and nervous system

Silence is the antidote to many of the ills of modern life.

Silence doesn’t ‘do’ anything to heal us, rather it creates the space our minds and bodies need to return to natural alignment and harmony.

We’re overstimulated and riddled with tension, because we don’t give ourselves the space we need to reset and heal.

I’m no exception. I find my shoulders, neck and lower back store consistent patterns of tension.

On days where I’m on the computer a lot, I don’t sleep well.

If I’m not careful ‘tired, but wired’, becomes my default state.

Some stimulation is fine. Too much and our brain feels like it’s turning into mush.

SOOTHING SILENCE

Silence soothes the mind and nervous system reducing tension in the body that comes from overstimulation.

I crave the silence of meditation as much as sleep now. It’s deeply healing and freeing to sit quietly in meditation.

When we’re silent, our bodies natural rejuvenating power shines through us.

We relax. We destress. We realign.

Cultivating silence creates the environment your mind, body and nervous system needs to heal and perform at its best.

2. Silence purifies your subconscious baggage

Our minds naturally express and release emotions, however when we aren’t able to freely express them or let them go, they become buried in our subconscious..

We lose our authenticity and it causes a string of worsening issues like negative self-belief, addiction, depression and anger.

Silence allows for subconscious emotional energy to arise, process and release.

This dense emotional energy is our proverbial “baggage.”

It weighs us down unconsciously and prevents us from living joyfully and free.

DROP YOUR BAGGAGE BEFORE YOU PICK IT UP

I’ve experienced this type of emotional energy release many times throughout my spiritual journey.

These moments of release can be difficult and painful, but they always result in feeling lighter and freer afterwards, like a calm breeze passing through after a thunderstorm.

Subconscious emotional energy is usually buried under our lack of attention or refusal to address it.

Even as an experienced meditator it builds up and needs to be addressed from time to time, especially during stressful periods of my life.

When we become silent, blocked emotional energy bubbles up and releases. This may sound scary, but it’s extremely cathartic and healing.

Silence is how we attune to the cleansing power of our subconscious, live in our authenticity, and drop our emotional baggage before we pick it up.

3. Silence heightens your senses

By practicing silence, we learn to listen, experience and connect to the world in deeper ways.

Ram Dass once famously said:

“The quieter you become, the more you can hear.”

Silence brings an aliveness to our perception that is often obstructed by thoughts and absent mindedness.

We’ve all had the experience of being silent in nature and noticed that everything around us–the rocks, trees, leaves and flowers–become more vivid, more real, more alive.

A WHOLE NEW WORLD

The same feeling of connection happens throughout daily life when we practice mediative silence.

We literally feel more, see more, taste more, and hear more, because we’re connected to the world without layers of thought obstructing it.

Silence brings an aliveness and immediacy to life.

It’s the mind’s thinking that disconnects us from the world, and the space of silence that unifies us to it.

4. Silence deepens your relationships

When we’re silent, we’re receptive, open and listening.

This is the perfect state of connection for relationships.

We literally “hear” more of our partner and close ones.

I remember coming out of a 10-day silent meditation retreat and immediately noticing how much energy we give and receive through spoken communication.

Having a conversation literally made me feel high!

While silence can show us the power of words, it’s in silence where the deepest connections are made.

WHAT 10-DAYS OF SILENCE TAUGHT ME

The people with me on the meditation retreat didn’t speak to each other at all during the 10-days, yet when we connected afterwards we all felt amazingly close, like we already knew each other on a deep level.

We discovered how much is communicated in silence.

Think of the depth of meaning that comes from silently gazing into your partner’s eyes.

No amount of words can express the depth of that connection and feeling.

Swami Kripalvananda put it beautifully:

“The truest communication is in the silence between two souls.

Silence shows us that everything is interconnected, whole and unified. Through this realization we create deeper connections to all the people in our life.”

5. Silence cultivates your creativity

Paramahansa Yoganada has a beautiful quote on the creative potential of silence.

“Silence is the canvas on which the masterpiece of our soul is painted.”

Silence is the background, the canvas on which we create our lives.

Imagine a song without any silence between the notes. It would sound like a chaotic, jumbled mess.

Silence makes music and creation possible.

No silence. No music. No canvas. No creation.

When we’re stuck in our mind and ego, it’s like trying to paint a masterpiece on one cramped corner of a canvas.

BREAKING FREE FROM OUR CORNER

The mind is limited in scope and understanding and confines us to a finite set of possibilities.

We get cornered in.

Through silence we break free from our self-imposed confinement, and connect to the entire universe of creative potential that exists within us.

We expand, stretch out, scribble and erase with freedom knowing that the canvas stretches out before us endlessly.

One of the most common experiences of people who do meditation retreats or prolonged practice is the overwhelming insights and creative ideas that come to them.

I have no doubt you’ll be surprised with the creative solutions, ideas and plans that flow through you when you allow yourself to be deeply silent.

6. Silence reveals your true self

Silence is the universal language of truth.

It’s regarded as the highest teaching in every wisdom tradition whether it’s Buddhism, Vedanta or Taoism.

It’s in silence that the most subtle, yet profound aspects of reality are revealed.

Bliss. Peace. Transcendence.

All of these are realized in silence.

The famous American transcendentalist Ralph Waldo Emerson, himself heavily influenced by Vedanta, put it simply:

“Silence is the great teacher and to learn its lessons, you must pay attention to it.”

In our daily life, the subtle truths of silence are lost in the noise of the world.

We don’t pay attention to silence, so we never give ourselves the opportunity to learn its transcendent lessons about who and what we truly are.

THE GRAVITY OF SILENCE

Silence automatically brings about self-awareness, reflection, and inquiry.

When we’re alone, quiet and still the restless mind eventually gets pulled inward into its source.

From here we dive beneath the superficial layers of our mind and ego and experience the divine light shining underneath.

In the silent space of our Heart we meet our true self.

“In the sacredness of silence, we find the space to connect with our own divinity.” – Adyashanti

In the same way that you sleep to return to full energy and strength, in silence you return to full knowledge and experience of who you truly are.

The biggest obstacle to getting the transformative benefits of silence is understanding its subtle, yet deep nature.

The apparent absence of silence is actually the presence of something profound–something powerful.

It’s our job to make our mind subtle enough to understand it.

Hopefully, this email has inspired you to create more moments of silence in your life to heal, to connect, to inspire, and to awaken.

There’s so much richness waiting for you in the presence of your inner silence.

I’ll meet you there in that silent space.

Have you experienced the transformative power of silence in your life? How has it impacted you? What have been your most profound insights or creative ideas that arose during moments of silence?

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