Silence and sorrow

In his book Unattended Sorrow, author Stephen Levine reflects on the role of silence as a form of healing. His entire book is intended to address grief and pain, so silence has a role in this larger process by diffusing sorrow rather than concentrating it in thoughts and sounds, external or of one’s own. Perhaps silence is not to be taken out of the context of Levine’s other recommendations and reflections — about connectedness, about mindfulness, about loving-kindness. But silence is such a powerful tool for discovering a stillness and a contentedness that is the goal in dealing with suffering and sorrow. As the author puts it, in silence

we come to know ourselves and the world around us at a whole new level. All the truths are welcomed and invited within the heart of silence. We sit with the saints and the suicidal in the Sacred Cave of the heart, enveloped in the silence from which all that heals is born.