June 12, 2018 Common Good

Learning from Silence

Silence is associated with listening. In silence, we are able to listen to our children, our neighbors, and our opponents, people we consider to be strangers. In listening, we also open ourselves to the nature of our neighborhood. With silence, we can learn about the place where we live because we can hear and see the messages of the trees, the plants, animals, and the buildings around us. They are a part of our community with much to teach, once we listen.*

What is one place in your day where you are not “plugged in” or “holding court.”  Do you have a practice of silence that you can build upon or begin today?

Stop, look, listen and notice what is happening all around you. Look up from the page for a moment and note, how many different noises can I recognize? Even life’s most passionate work  can be tiring when we are constantly moving. In the midst, there is beauty to be heard from all things if and when we are able to notice.  People who can live with such silence, actually cherish it, can work with the stranger and neighbor with less anxiety and need for control.



McKnight, John. The Abundant Community: Awakening the Power of Families and Neighborhoods (p. 95). Berrett-Koehler Publishers. Kindle Edition.

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