This is a quandary most of us face more often than we may wish to let on. I know it is for me. And the question, “Am I to speak up or simply listen?” weighs a bit heavily on my mind and heart these days.
The idea for this blog came to me as I was in the midst of a recent Daily Word early-morning meditation a few of us join via Zoom six days a week. The affirmation we were to take into the Silence was “I find my protection in Spirit.” I could not quiet my mind because of all the concerning thoughts that demanded my attention, uncertainty about the direction the election results were moving us, and more personally, what direction my own spiritual journey was taking me. And all of that led me to ask this question as I considered all the various ways in which it applied in my life.
That’s what this blog is all about. So, if it’s a question that serves you to ask yourself, please read on and perhaps find your own answers, as I am now being guided to find mine through this writing.
Some of you may be thinking, as you read this, “Gosh! He’s covered this ground before! Why is he writing about it again?” My response is this: When one practices being in the present moment consistently enough over a long enough period of time, that’s all there really is! Right now.
You’re not so certain this is true? Okay, try this exercise after you’ve read through the steps outlined below:
- Close your eyes and become centered in the stillness, using whatever method you’re used to using to begin your time of prayer and meditation; if this activity is not part of your normal daily routine, then simply close your eyes and begin to concentrate on your breathing as you slowly inhale, holding the breath for a moment, and then slowly exhaling, allowing your whole body to relax. Repeat this two more times and then allow your body to resume this very essential act of breathing without any effort on your part to regulate it.
- Are you consciously aware of any specific thought running through your mind right now? If not, that’s a good indicator that you may have just connected with your heart space and are experiencing the Presence within! Savor the experience and now simply listen, remaining open for any message, any intuitive nudge, or impression that seems to be lifting you into a higher state of consciousness. But if you are aware of a thought, then move on to the next step.
- Keeping an open mind to whatever the thought seems to be, consider these next questions:
- Is my thought something I’d feel comfortable sharing with someone else or not? And if not, why not?
- Is the thought about me, or is it about an outside situation or another person or group?
- Is the thought about something happening right now or about something from the past or possibly the future?
And if you understand when I say, “All we really have is right now!” then you may likely know about and appreciate the dilemma one may have as to whether one is to speak up or simply listen. Here are some questions I believe are worthy of our consideration in order to make a wise choice:
- When I consider the idea of speaking up, do I have a sense that speaking up equates with speaking my truth, that it aligns with the best of who I am? Is it inspired by an inner calling to support someone or some group or cause that is being maligned or dismissed and judged as being anything but equal? Does my speaking up require me to be courageous, and if so, am I prepared to take a stand, no matter what? Or am I feeling like I’ve been triggered by the person or situation, and I am unable to stop and think again before I blurt out what I’m about to say?
- Will speaking up result in division or separation of some sort, one that only compounds the situation?
- If I choose to simply listen, is it possible I may be making a choice that promotes connection, particularly when it is preceded by compassionate inquiry (“Can you share with me more about that?”). Remember, one can’t be fully open to listening to someone else if we’re thinking about what we are hoping to hear or say next. Or do I find myself closing down and saying nothing (giving the appearance that I’m listening when I’ve really retreated into my shell)?
So, what is the bottom line for me when I find myself in a quandary over this question? If I don’t feel like I am sufficiently in balance to make a choice, I do nothing, and I say nothing other than, “I’ll have to think more about that!”
While I wish I could’ve offered a more illuminating answer to my own question, my wife did tell me this morning that she thought my “energy” was much lighter and brighter than just the day before, so I take that as an encouraging sign that I’m moving in the right direction and will have my answer soon! And if you are seeking inner guidance for any situation akin to this, I am holding you in prayer, seeing you guided by your inner wisdom as you claim your highest good.
Love & Light, Steven