Mouna (silence) is a fast for the mind. Many of us have a heavy diet of sensory overload, constant conversation and continual interaction. This over-stimulation causes mental indigestion which can result in ill health, insomnia, excess stress, worry and energy depletion.
When we practice mouna, we offer ourselves the opportunity to unload the heavy baggage of the mind. Energy typically used in excessive talking and interacting is instead, directed inward. When we consciously choose to disengage the senses and can sit be in silence, we naturally reduce stress, have more energy and experience inner peace.
Practicing mouna for just 30 minutes each day can be of great benefit. For that time, resist the urge to talk on the phone, watch tv, listen to the radio, work on the computer or any activity that engages the senses. Tune the mind in and try a lighter diet of silence.
With continued practice, mouna not only conserves our energy, but makes us more aware of how and what we speak, resulting in clear and direct patterns of communication.
Right Speech: Speaking with Intention
Have you ever said something and wished you could take it back? Are the words you are about to utter harmful or creating division between people? Are the words uplifting and promoting harmony?
Before speaking, how often do we actually consider what’s about to be said? In those moments before we speak, we can ask ourselves: Is what I’m about to say necessary or not? Promoting harmony or discord? Uplifting or damaging? In this way, we practice Right Speech.
As we bring more mindfulness to our words, we are less likely to say things we’ll regret and more likely to cultivate positive connections with others.
Right Listening: The Completeness of Attention
“We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we speak.” ~ Epictetus
When someone is speaking, how often are we ‘kind of’ listening because we’re already thinking of what we’re going to say next? How often have we been talking and the other person is reading/writing text messages or taking phone calls?
What would it take…to just listen…to just give space and not interrupt?
What would it take…to gather our energy…to be fully present with the person in front of us?
When we are in the moment, with complete attention, we are practicing Right Listening.
Not only does Right Listening help to manage our thinking mind, but we are actually giving the gift of full attention to another person. In paying attention to others, we’re also paying attention to parts of ourselves we might not be aware of or disregard.
Hari Om Tat Sat
© Copyright 2013 – All Elements Yoga – Gail Seckrettar