DAY 1385: Alertness is the Hidden Discipline of Familiarity

April 15, 2016
By bethmordecai
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DAY 1385: Alertness is the Hidden Discipline of Familiarity

Reflecting on an On Being podcast featuring David Whyte…

“Alertness is the hidden discipline of familiarity”

– in “Everything is Waiting for You” by David Whyte

Dear Hevreh,

Imagine that noise has disappeared. You sit or stand without the reverberations of the world around you. Are you scared, elated, or confused by the weight of silence? We must imagine a world full of silence because our lives are not silent; they are a messy mixture of noise and actions. And even when there are opportunities to be still, we cannot. We mindlessly click on our phones when nothing else is going on, reflexively hoping to fill that silence some useful action.

Yet what if we can find a way to exist without the need to fill our spaces of silence? What if we pause to experience silence? Perhaps, as the quote above teaches us, silence is a tool to alert our minds to the hidden noises within us around us; a noise that hums with the reverberations of some transcendent presence. Sh’ma Yisrael, Hear O’ Israel! Hear the wonders of all that is around us — all that is God. Recognize that there is something bigger than ourselves speaking to us within the noise of the familiar, alerting us to our true nature. We must pay heed, we must be alert for the messages within the familar happenings of the day, for it is within those messages that our minds, our hearts, and our lives become truly alive.

May this day of Shabbat, a day to encounter silence, alert us to the hidden transcendent noises around us.

Shabbat Shalom,

Rabbi Ari Saks

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Category : Rabbi Rabbi's Journal Shabbat
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