Silence

Joe Bunting

Heart: 

The rests between notes make the music. Take a quiet moment to tune into yourself or the group. Invite Silence to slow the process, make space for questions, transition, or simply deepen.

Description: 

make space for internalizing, checking in, listening into the middle
tune into yourself
at end of chunk of delivery in presentation, pause to allow questions & insights to surface
slow down to increase awareness, be conscious of how to enter back in
deepening
shift energy
access mystery
privileges different ways of knowing
allow to shift gears
often tremendously useful at points of synthesis
short and long are different, brief pause vs. hour of meditative reflection
access different capacities

bells used to punctuate
could still be doing activities during some silences, e.g. free-writing
group do collective task together but in silence feels different than aloud
sometimes becomes a ritual
or can be invoked when needed
often good at OPENINGS, CLOSINGS
transition point, to shift the energy
and used for accessing mystery, connection with spirit
transcends language
silence when i withhold, choose not to offer feedback, silence in and of itself is neutral, so can be used to nourish or to punish
silence in individual & collective are different
helps us find emergence in the collective & helps us hear individual voice inside
as a regular practice, builds group's capacity for equanimity both in groups and for individuals meditating
discipline associated with, especially when done as a practice
if silence happens unexpectedly, how go with it?

CAUTIONS & CAVEATS

silence can be invoked oppressively, if the only time a facilitator invokes it is after an expression of anger then it sends message that anger is not acceptable

if internal chatter is too much, then people will likely resist, then may not fit the culture (Peggy's experience with lawyers & journalists)

very culturally dependent

can be invoked as a balancing FEEDBACK loop, when maybe what's needed is amplification

couple who don't talk to each other anymore, silence can be deadly
Santa Rosa Creek Commons meetings shifting from boring/quiet to energetic and engaged

Examples: 

Spirited Work gatherings had bell in the middle that anyone could ring if conflict arose, often succeeded in keeping productive (Peggy)

Yulupa cohousing values clarification story (Tree)

Resources: 

meditation retreats
bells, different kinds of
Quakers
Buddhists
maybe do random web search on term . . .
Planetwalker (John Francis)

Category: