ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

The Efficacy of Silence: Finding the Soul

Updated on October 7, 2017
Maya Shedd Temple profile image

Eastern religious philosophy is one of my areas of interest about which I write essays exploring the nature of reality and being.

Paramahansa Yogananda

"Last Smile"
"Last Smile" | Source

Introduction

The great guru, Paramahansa Yogananda, said, “God is the mirror of silence in which all creation is reflected."

First Requirement for Meditation

One of the first instructions for meditation is to find a place where you can experience silence, a place free from noise. And if you cannot find such a noiseless environment, you must mentally shut out the noise and refuse to let it distract you from your journey inward.

Complete silence is impossible to find in this world ruled by maya. But it is helpful to filter out as much sound as possible when we want to engage in deep concentration leading to meditation. The key is practice; the more we practice strengthened by our deep yearning for attunement, the closer we can approach silence.

Western Attitude Sees Silence as Negative

Many people in Western culture think that silence is a negative quality. They are so accustomed to having conversation, background music, traffic noise, and the sounds of other people moving nearby, that they become unsettled if they are thrust into a quiet situation.

For example, a city dweller visiting the country suddenly becomes aware that all he hears is birds and exclaims, “the silence is deafening,” and then loneliness sets in because he has associated constant noise and motion around him with congeniality with others.

Of course, what actually happens is that constant sound serves as a distraction from the inner self, and being a stranger to the inner self makes one uneasy if suddenly forced by silence and stillness to confront it.

But, of course, the very purpose of seeking silence is to aid one in attuning with the inner self. Unless one has become aware that stillness, solitude, and silence are truly necessary for spiritual advancement, these qualities seem frightening and unrewarding. When one sits to meditate, it seems that one is doing nothing.

Paramahansa Yogananda's Teachings Offer Methods

And that is why Paramahansa Yogananda’s teachings are so vital. They offer things to do; actual physical motion that ultimately leads to stillness and silence.

Expecting an active body and mind to simply stop all activity is unrealistic. But through the great guru’s teachings, we learn the importance of stillness and silence, and we are given exercises that actually help us experience the journey leading from activity and noise to stillness and silence.

The great guru dramatizes the importance of silence in the beautiful poem/affirmation titled “Meditation on Silence” in Metaphysical Meditations:

My silence, like an expanding sphere, spreads everywhere.

My silence spreads like a radio song, above, beneath, left and right, within and without.

My silence spreads like a wildfire of bliss; the dark thickets of sorrow and the tall oaks of pride are all burning up

My silence, like the ether, passes through everything, carrying the songs of earth, atoms, and stars into the halls of His infinite mansion.

This poem demonstrates the efficacy of silence; in addition to serving as an affirmation, it also instructs us on the very purpose of silence: our silence does not simply stand like an empty chamber; it “spreads everywhere.”

This knowledge helps the mind know that our consciousness through our silence behaves like vibrations in the atmosphere spreading “like a radio song, above, beneath, left and right, within and without.”

The great guru has told us that we are already united with Spirit, who is unbounded, His being existing everywhere at all times. Through our silence we come to realize our oneness with the ever “expanding sphere.”

Kriya Yoga Helps Burn Karma

The wonderful comparison of our silence to a “wildfire of bliss” is most instructive and satisfying as we find out that the negative qualities of sorrow and pride are dissolved through this blessed silence we possess.

Contacting our silence burns up the dark qualities that keep us from Spirit. This reminds us of the great guru’s likening Kriya yoga to a fire that burns up the seeds of past bad karma.

Then we learn that our silence is like the ether which “passes through everything”—that substance that carries every vibration of creation.

The affirmation teaches us and continues to remind us that our silence is a vehicle leading us to our sacred goal, “into the halls of His infinite mansion.” The metaphor of the “mansion” is the perfect place to end the journey—our home in Spirit.

Guided Meditation on Peace - SRF

© 2017 Linda Sue Grimes

Comments

Submit a Comment

No comments yet.

working

This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

Show Details
Necessary
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Features
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Marketing
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Statistics
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)