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By Chaplain (Capt.) Meade Adams 2nd Bomb Wing Chapel

Our lives and our world is full of noise. There is noise everywhere, all the time. Today, in 2018 we are bombarded with more stimuli than any generation that has ever lived on this earth. From smartphones, to on-demand music, movies and television streaming, to the hustle and bustle of everyday life we are overwhelmingly surrounded by a constant stream of stimuli. There is so much noise and stimuli that many of us feel painfully uncomfortable with silence. I am guilty of it as well. We jump in the car for a short trip from our offices to the BX and we have the radio on, a cd, a podcast or some kind of noise. We are sitting at home with our spouses and the conversation turns to silence and we become uncomfortable so we throw on the TV. We have become uncomfortable with the silence of our own minds and thoughts. I believe we are uncomfortable with what such silence may reveal.

There is an ancient practice that is present in many faith traditions and also in secular traditions that speaks to getting in touch with the silence. It is called centering. You may know it by other names: silent prayer, meditation, contemplation, mindfulness. It is simply the practice of seeking silence, embracing it and using it to connect to something deeper. What that is for you may vary. It may be God, the Universe, your own self or mind, or your thoughts. Whatever the “something deeper” is for you, I challenge you to take a few moments every day to practice silence. Take 5, 10, 15 minutes to breathe, turn off the radio and the TV, stop work, and to bask in the silence. Quiet your mind and see what it reveals to you. I believe regardless of religious affiliation, or if there is none at all, this practice will work wonders for your resilience, coping skills and overall sense of inner peace.