What Is a Silent Retreat?
This is a meditative practice that entails stilling the mind and being more present. A lot of spiritual traditions have provisions for silent retreat as a basis of their doctrines and teachings. A lot of the time, a form of meditative practice is the centre of this phenomenon. In the western world sense, the practice of silent retreat is usually something of luxury, more like a spiritual activity that is done whenever there is enough time to get away from the stereotypical life, work and business.
This practice is mostly done when the individual needs to release him or herself of stress and find a higher level of consciousness. In basic terms, you are de-stressing in a deep state. Some individuals of high learnedness view the practice of silent retreat as more than just a health and overall wellness booster, it is infact a necessity. This view is largely dependent on the notion that, for every person and community as a whole, we all play a very vital part in world transformation and evolution.
A lot of persons are lost in the confinement of their beliefs, thoughts, preferences, grievances and even opinions. In literal terms, this state of mind is the definition of a prison that is characterized by struggle, anxiety, stress, confusion and some other awful things. The world we live in is hugely characterized by hardship, pain, suffering, disease and a lot of unpleasant situations. Sometimes, being in a state of inward reflection will help in identifying the numerous voices in the head. The fact that these numerous head voices are always in opposition is not a new occurrence.
Silent retreat opens you to deeper dimensions. It is a type of consciousness that can be reached subconsciously. It can happen when you are running, dancing or when you’re captivated by beauty. It could also happen when there’s trauma, shock, intense pain or even near death experience. This type of consciousness can also be revealed when you are meditating. The practice of meditation is a very needful tool for a lot of people. Even so, a lot of meditation practices do not make use of silent retreat as a fundamental teaching. In the event that they make use of it, many individuals will not be in sync with it because to them meditation is far from silent.
This might come as a surprise but extensive research has revealed that silent retreat has the capability of going way deeper than the meditation practice. Meditation in itself might not necessarily be the most vital part, but the existence of silence itself. The process of silent retreat is not all about calming the mind or getting rid of thoughts, it is more about travelling to inner dimensions within your being. Thoughts are like waves on the surface, the stillness at the bottom is ‘beingness’, so silent retreat enables you to fall into the depth of the ocean and explore the quiet that surrounds it.
What is the Importance of Silent Retreat?
The more you rest in the quiet and stillness of silent retreat, the more you begin to discover your nature, essence and importance. This is because this practice is the silent aspect of life that remains immoveable and unbreakable throughout the wonders, beauties and tragedies of life. If a person keeps confronting silence, he or she becomes more rooted in it, this will help such an individual to be able to stand in the midst of life’s vicissitudes and truly fulfill his or her innate wholeness.
- Silent retreat helps you to find peace
Some people may expect the same from practice to change their life. The truth is that it doesn’t make a person’s life perfectly happy and successful. However, what it does is freeing people from the prison of mistaken identities with psychological beliefs, thoughts, preferences, opinions and even grievances. It works at ending the war within you and opening the pathway to a peace and joy that is not dependent on any circumstances.
- Silent retreat helps you to prevent distractions
This silent retreat gives individuals the opportunity to identify what keeps their attention at the surface level, so they can understand what prevents them from exploring their innermost depth. This would help such a person to practice the surrender of the mind’s ‘safety improvised strategies’, so they can be held in the space of the retreat.
- Silent retreat improves your focus dramatically
For a lot of individuals, it’s really hard to focus their mind on numerous subjects at once. Silent retreat gives you the time to free your mind from all distractions and consult your mind’s focus power. This practice will significantly improve your focus on the present moment by turning off all distractions like; writing, talking, reading, playing or eye contact. You’ll learn that you are not alone and also cultivate greater awareness.
- Silent retreat gives clarity of mind
When you engage in this practice, you clear your mind. It allows your mind to deepen and within a few days of constant practice, clarity of the mind starts to take place. This process helps the mind to recover from stress and begin to feel stronger again. With this, you view life through a different and mature set of eyes.