Three days of silence, what does that do to you? Journalist Irene Ras went to a dominican monastery for three days and discovered how lovely it is to be silent with others.
The first hours of not speaking are okay, but then I fear the many hours of silence lying in wait. The early morning meditation and silent breakfast don’t switch off my thoughts as I had hoped. I re-experience everything that has happened, all the feelings I’ve had, over the past week.
And in the second meditation I ask myself if my head will ever stop mulling about it all again. For the first time in twenty years, I write down my thoughts in a notebook. Thanks to the yoga class, my thoughts ease off, but it’s not truly quiet in my head. Where, then, is that silence when you have opened up yourself? Then I realize during a walk that I am already in that silence and that the real worrying has eased. The big thoughts still pop up, but not all of them are that scary.
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Text Irene Ras Photography Bonnita Postma