Another year has gone by and the anniversary approaches, along with its memories and maybe even memorial services. Especially when this pertains to a catastrophe the public is commonly invited to take part in a moment of silence: all stands still but for the earth and nature continuing their momentum. Yet even if it is a death of a family member of friend, it is a day we typically go within and find the silence of remembering. Yet what does this silence and memory contain?

In a society where people tend to shun silence, quiet time and other forms of looking within and relaxing, this kind of silent memory takes on an interesting role. To some it is the chance to recall what happened – memories that at other times are ignored or uncomfortable. Others will find their mind racing around in this deafening stillness. The response can be anything from awkward to sadness or even grief.

Anyone who practices meditation has a very different understanding of the use of silence. It is a means of observing and letting go. It offers relaxation and understanding. It creates the space to form one’s future. Talk to someone versed in the Law of Attraction, Mindfulness or similar mind-based practices and they will point out that your thoughts form your life. Negative emotions can be changed by the simple mental exercise of envisioning something funny, adorable or lovable. Health is influenced by our perception of ourself and our life. Future occurrences are influenced by our expectancy of how they will turn out.

Yet holding a moment of silence tends to contain sad memories, maybe even anger, helplessness and fear. Based on the Law of Attraction we are inviting the past into the present and future. Based on meditative knowledge we are creating more tension and past ignorance. And the bigger the catastrophe the more people join in the silence and potentially creating this kind of silence, focusing on the negative.
So does that mean we should skip these moments, forget the past and push forward? Rather we should become conscious of what we are doing and allow ourselves to tweak our thoughts. These moments are a chance to improve our life and world. Yes, we can learn from the past, but that does not mean we should dwell on it or even project it.

Next time you find yourself joining in a moment of silence or even just recollecting an event try to find positives that came forth out of what happened, no matter how trivial they may seem. Did the situation bring a family or even community closer together? Did it remind people to be helpful and grateful or to offer support? Did improvements in construction, laws or administration follow? If remembering an individual, what positive legacy and wonderful memories did they leave behind? Without judging, what has it taught you and/or society about the response offered? And so on.

Strive to create a moment of silence full of potential and a better future. The more people sending out positive vibrations, especially at the same time and without distractions – exactly what a moment of silence offers – the stronger and more positive the jointly created future can become. Moments of silence should not be about holding on to, let alone reproducing, past events. The offered memory is there to help us improve and build the future we envision.

About the Author

Hilde Pols combines her music training with her energy work: As a flute and ensemble teacher she developed many techniques to encourage creativity and a sense of the own body, mind and soul. As a Certified Meditation Instructor, Healer and Dorn/Breuss Therapist she supports individuals to take life into their own hands. Providing healing and other modalities at in Germany, she has also taught in Denmark and the US.