Silence and Speech

Enjoyed reading “The Strength of Stillness” by Sri Aurobindo. An excerpt:

There are two great forces in the universe, silence and speech. Silence prepares, speech creates. Silence acts, speech gives the impulse to action. Silence compels, speech persuades. The immense and inscrutable processes of the world all perfect themselves within, in a deep silence, covered by a noisy and misleading surface of sound–the stir of innumerable waves above, the fathomless resistless mass of the ocean’s waters below.

sea of life

sea of life

We often see the waves,  hear the rumour and the thousand voices – and by these  judge the course of the future and the heart of God’s intention; but in nine cases out of ten we misjudge. Therefore it is said that in History it is always the unexpected that happens. But it would not be the unexpected if men could turn their eyes from superficies and look into substance, if they accustomed themselves to put aside appearances and penetrate beyond them to the secret and disguised reality, if they ceased listening to the noise of life and listened rather to its silence or the stillness.

But there are two kinds of stillness–the helpless stillness of inertia, which heralds dissolution, and the stillness of assured sovereignty which commands the harmony of life. It is the sovereign stillness that results in Calm. The more complete the calm, mightier is the force in action. In this calm, the right knowledge comes.


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