Having just returned from a wonderful yoga retreat in Ubud Bali I would like to share some of my experience of the the beauty of a day of silence. What better place to explore the joy and peace of silence than in lush tropical jungle surrounded by timeless rice paddies.
On waking on the day of silence I was able to be fully present in my surroundings to explore the splendor of nature. To notice the vibrant colours of the birds, the vivid and varied shades of green of the jungle, to see dragonflies and insects industriously going about their day. Everything I observed seemed to leap out at me …as if I was truly seeing it for the first time.
Each mouthful of food was savoured as there was no distraction from conversation to the business of eating. I was able to discern subtle differences in taste and texture..my sense of smell was heightened.
There is something very freeing about not having to speak to anyone..to make conversation ( which I might add I normally love!).
I spent my time simply using my senses to be fully present at each moment as the day stretched out. It seemed almost timeless with no pressure to be anywhere or do anything in particular.
We were given instruction to try to avoid reading as reading in itself engages the left brain. If anything we were encouraged to explore using our right brain….to be creative. I chose to make a flower mandala and found this to be very calming. Playing with the colours and textures of the flowers felt so natural and I was soon deeply engrossed in the activity.
Earlier in the day I spent time simply staring out into the jungle whilst using the singing bowl ….feeling the vibration of the sound in my whole body. Eventually every cell in my body began to sing with the sound.
It was not until the following morning after practicing our sun salutations to the rising sun overlooking Lake Batar and the surrounding volcanoes that we were able to speak again.
It felt strange to hear the chatter of voices and although I was pleased to talk with others and share my experiences I could not help feeling a little sad that the time of silence was over. Experiencing a day like this is something we could all incorporate into our lives, allowing the richness of silence to fill our hearts, minds and souls…it is so refreshing!