Maybe home is found in our quietness.

Our truths, our home, our serenity; all flow from stillness.

Soon silence will have passed into legend. Man has turned his back on silence. Day after day he invents machines and devices that increase noise and distract humanity from the essence of life, contemplation, meditation.

Jean Arp (16 September 1886 – 7 June 1966)

As is often the way, a number of disparate items came together for today’s post in a way of lovely connectivity.

A few weeks ago when meeting our local doctor for the first time since we moved to Oregon, I had grumbled about bouts of terrible short-term memory recall and more or less had shrugged my shoulders in resignation that there was nothing one could do: it was just part of getting older, I guessed!

“On the contrary”, responded Dr. Hurd, continuing, “There’s growing evidence that our information-crowded lives: cell phones; email; constant TV; constant news, is pumping too much for our brains to manage.”

Dr. Hurd continued, “Think about it!  Our brains have to process every single sensory stimulus.  The research is suggesting that our brains are being over-loaded and then the brain just dumps the excess data.  If that is the case, and the evidence is pointing in that direction, then try thirty minutes of meditation each day; give your brain a chance to rest.”

So that was the first revelation.

The second was a recent science programme on the BBC under the Horizon series.  The programme was called, The Truth About Personality.

Michael Mosley's brain being measured.
Michael Mosley’s brain being measured.

Michael Mosley explores the latest science about how our personalities are created – and whether they can be changed.

Despite appearances, Mosley is a pessimist who constantly frets about the future. He wants to worry less and become more of an optimist.

He tries out two techniques to change this aspect of his personality – with surprising results.

And he travels to the frontiers of genetics and neuroscience to find out about the forces that shape all our personalities.

Related Links

Within the programme came the astounding fact that even ten minutes a day meditation can help the brain achieve a more balanced personality (balance in terms of not being overly negative in one’s thoughts).

The third revelation came from Jean and me watching a TED Talk last night.  Just 14 minutes long, please watch it – you will be transformed!

Published on Jul 17, 2013

More and more people worldwide are living in countries not considered their own. Writer Pico Iyer — who himself has three or four “origins” — meditates on the meaning of home, the joy of traveling and the serenity of standing still.

Then, just three days ago, John Hurlburt, a long-time supporter and regular contributor to Learning from Dogs, emailed me his reflection on meditation.  John quickly gave permission for it to be published here.


The stillness of evening.

Evening Meditation

Our world is increasingly spiritually, morally, mentally, physically and economically bankrupt. Many people would like to change the world one way or another. Most don’t really know why. Some folks simply don’t care. The idea is to leave life a bit better than we found it when we were born.

The fact is we’re all intrinsically sacred in a universe we didn’t create. We tend to prioritize illusion and delusion above reality. Playing God is a precursor of evil.  A supreme faith in Money is self contradictory and ultimately fatal. Arrogance compounds the problem.

We connect in unified awareness through serene meditation. We experience harmony within an emerging celestial symphony. Answers flow from the inside out as we surrender to the eternal energy flow.

Be still and know…

an old lamplighter


Finally, after having a real struggle to find the place, both psychologically and physically, where I could start my own relationship with meditation, on Wednesday afternoon, when walking the quarter-mile up to our mail-box, it struck me as obvious.

Embraced by nature.
Embraced by nature.

This quiet place on our creek where the water trickles down from an old flood irrigation dam.  Somewhere to sit under the shade of a tree, somewhere to be still, somewhere as perfect a home as anyone could ever find.

Meditation is the dissolution of thoughts in Eternal awareness or Pure consciousness without objectification, knowing without thinking, merging finitude in infinity.


4 thoughts on “Maybe home is found in our quietness.

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