The sound of my footsteps got in the way. So every few feet I would stop. So that I could fully appreciate it.
It was not the beauty, which is what struck me first. But the stillness, that held my awe. It was the stillness that kept urging me to walk further out. Further away from the faint bits of life, that were fading away behind me.
The more I walked, the more still everything else was.
Lake Louise in Alberta, Canada…a place completely frozen. Literally. From the lake I walked on. To the large rock mountains in every direction. To the trees glossed in ice. The the once waterfall, iced dead in it’s tracks. Nothing moved. Nothing made a sound.
What a stark contrast from my every day life.
I have built a life for myself that is full of constant motion. With a persistent, and sometimes deafening noise. Most people have built lives in the same mold. It is a product of the connected world, in which we now live.
Always moving. Always running. Always loud. A three ring circus isn’t nearly enough to capture all that we have going on in our lives.
I think about how hard I have been running in life…non-stop for days and weeks and months and years. My world races around me. And roars at me. And I race against it. And roar at it.
But in that moment, high in the mountains, I felt like someone had just pulled the plug on my speakers. Like someone paused my entire screen.
I would describe it as surreal, but it was so real. So absolutely real. I was so very present in this moment.
I know meditation can still a mind. But I don’t know if it can equal what I just experienced. I know I cannot get here with my own meditation. Especially with the form I practice.
My death meditation is amazing. It drives me to live life. And pound every last ounce out of every last moment. It’s motivating. Inspiring. It is truly amazing…it’s just not peaceful. It’s not quiet. Its not still.
It’s not anything like this.
There is such clarity in stillness. All of the sudden, things started to make sense to me. Without all the noise, what really mattered, came to the surface. To the front of my mind.
There is a peace in stillness. A great calm came over me. The kind of everything-is-going-to-be-alright calm, that leaves you relaxed, hopeful. And without worry.
And there is a quiet in stillness…that starts externally but then moves inwards. The sounds and the voices in my head just faded away. It was just me. Me and my clarity. Me and my peacefulness.
I pulled off to the side of the trail at one point and sat in a snowbank. Just to prolong the quiet. The stillness. I sat there for a long while. And not one person would walk past me. Not one thing moved. Or made a sound.
It was a gift to me.
I am back now. Back in the race. Back near the blaring speakers.
But I am back here, having captured something that I will not soon forget. That stillness. And that peace. And that clarity. And that quiet.
I can still feel that in my head. I can still feel it in my heart. I can still feel the still. I believe this will stay with me for a while.
If you can’t get away to a place like this. I hope that you can find a place that you can be still. Or create a space to be still. And just live in that stillness for a bit. It is worth whatever energy you can put towards getting there.