Photography By: Gaye Abbott, 2022
It had been seven days of no talking at a guided silent retreat at the Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health in the gorgeous natural surroundings of the Berkshires region of Massachusetts. During those seven days we had to find other ways of communication other than speaking out loud, or even in a whisper. There were many that found this incredibly challenging, not able to live with all the unexpressed thoughts there were cavorting in their minds without verbal expression.
I was not one of those. For me the silence was not only welcomed but savored. This is why when the silence was lifted that 7th day and a cacophony of sound broke out in the large room we were in I immediately left the room for the nearby lake and nature’s quiet embrace.
I do understand why silence is challenging for many people. We are surrounded by the tumult of sounds, mostly man made, that are constantly around us or that we choose to have around us. What would happen if all that was gone?
We might suddenly be confronted with ourselves amidst the vacuum of no stimulation. A space where you may be asked to let go, accept, befriend yourself and forgive.
Silence for me has always been a space of deep solace and restoration. A space where I find nurturing and healing. Thus on this last day of 31 Days from Elder Muse posts I enter into a personal at home silent retreat for the next 7 days.
No plans or practices – just silence, good food, great quantities of rest, no electronic or digital access, experimenting with painting and collage, an abundance of time spent meandering in nature….. filled with curiosity and wonder for what unfolds each day.
I am filled with gratitude and appreciation for you, my global community, who have read these posts and helped me to sustain a re-entry back into my creative heart, mind, and soul. It has been an easy journey of waking up each morning and trusting that what wants to be expressed will show up….and that I get to share it with you!
In 2023 may you laugh often, love abundantly, tap into creativity, and cherish the preciousness of this lifetime you have been gifted with……Gaye Abbott
(This film is repeated from Day 2 – Elder Muse as it feels like a good way to end these 31 days. GA)
Aug 21, 2021 “What does silence mean to you? Is it something you fear and fill up with distractions? Or is it something you actively seek as an antidote to a stressful life?
Visiting silence can be an adventure, a life changing journey into peace and quiet. In silence we can hear our own thoughts. Silence speaks for the part of life that is beyond words. There is space, inner freedom and creativity. We find a place within us that is centered, a place of trust. As the noisy demands of daily life make us shrink inside, in silence we expand. Don’t underestimate the power of silence. “
Filmed in Springbok, South Africa. Featuring Nicky Morris. All of our films are made possible through the generous support of our patrons. To be part of this journey : https://www.patreon.com/greenrenaissance If you’d prefer to make once off contribution, our PayPal details are : paypal.me/greenrenaissance Who is Green Renaissance?
We are Michael and Justine – passionate filmmakers, living off-grid and dedicating our time to making films that we hope will inspire and share positivity out into the world. Editing – by Jackie Viviers Sound mix – by Tamryn Breakey
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You can find ALL of the 31-Days Elder Muse posts in the archives here: https://wildlyfreeelder.com/2022/12/
Gaye Abbott, Wildly Free Elder, 12/31/22