In a too small house with too many kids, my childhood was very noisy. Fights over the bathroom, sisters' boundaries, parents shouting about chores, or whatever, I wanted them all to shut up. Sometimes I wonder if my current hearing problems are because I shut them out too effectively.
It wasn't until I had my own place that I confronted silence. I loved it -- for a few hours. Then I couldn't stand it. I turned on the tv first thing every morning and let it run all day. It didn't matter if I actually sat down to watch it, I needed background noise.
I was thinking about this while driving around in a world full of crazy drivers. People on the radio talked about computer hacking, cheating, and lying to spouses about Nordstrom purchases. It didn't occur to me to turn it off or switch the station until they threatened to inform me about buying and selling houses. Quiet!!
When there's constant noise, we don't have to think our own thoughts, which is just as well because people are hard-wired towards discontent. Or maybe I'm just wired that way. If we're happy all the time then there's no reason to push ourselves to do anything different than what we're currently doing. No progress, no growth, no creativity.
We build noise into our lives so we don't have to think about that because achieving stuff involves effort, and gee it's so much easier to lay on the couch and eat Tostitos.
I used to be good at quieting down and thinking about stuff. Now it seems like all I do is obsessively think about my irritations. I don't think that's going to get me anywhere good -- or maybe that's exactly what it takes to kick me off the couch and make my life better than it currently is?
The world isn't just out there to do things to us that creates situations we have to react to; we create our corner of the world. If we spend all our time thinking about how we don't have enough money, then there will never be enough of it. If we don't feel loved, then we aren't going to attract love.
Pick a topic, the same dynamic will still be true. I'm thinking especially about someone I've dubbed "A2" who annoys me. I expect him to annoy me, therefore he continues to do it. I've played a part in this, and if I quiet myself enough to think about it all more consciously, just perhaps I can change the dynamic? (Though I resent the fact that I have to be the grownup in this and other situations!)
Our thoughts create a constant chatter of noise in our minds and it's like the tv which is always on, but we aren't paying attention when our minds are impregnated with the desire to buy whitening toothpaste. Our thoughts can run in endless loops of stuff that we fear instead of creating what we want.
I'm resolving to put more effort into turning off the noise and meditating.