“The silence allows you to listen to the wind, your step, the fragrance of love.”
—Signpost along the “walk of silence” at Lake Orta
On a recent vacation I took a small boat to the Isola San Giulio on Lake Orta and did the “walk of silence’ around the monastery and surrounding stone streets. In the midst of all the chaos of traveling, shopping, dining, hiking, and a total cacophony of noise of all kinds and levels, those moments of inward focus and integration became the highlight of my trip.
It occurred to me as I walked from signpost to signpost that the stillness needed to hear the bird’s song, the water lapping on the shore, the rain on the treetops, or a child’s spontaneous laugh is an inside job. It is not about the external chaos over which I have little or no control. It is about the internal quiet that allows the soul to rest and reflect.
We live in a society that is filled with noise: media messages, signage, unsolicited mail and phone calls, television, car radios, and more. Planes, trains, cars, and other motorized vehicles pollute the silence as we walk or cycle. In all public places, people stand right next to us and speak freely on their cell phones to someone we have never met. Assaults on our quiet come too often to count.
If we are going to maintain the equilibrium in our lives, we must make a commitment to well-being each day. Whether it is reading familiar passages, listening to music that reaches into the heart, meditating, doing yoga, walking in the early morning, or talking to a special friend—there is an activity for each of us that can define the day as one of good memories and contentment. As we go forward into the day, we will be busy doing tasks and activities, solving problems, and finding solutions, but the deposit in the bank of well-being can carry us through those busy moments in spite of the many demands we face.
At Touchmark, the Life Enrichment/Wellness program is designed to allow each resident to find his or her moments of well-being. Contact a member of the Life Enrichment/Wellness team for information on the program opportunities that will provide meaningful moments throughout your day.