Pascal wrote: «I have discovered that all human evil comes from that man’s inability to sit in a room and be quiet».
The first time I read this sentence it caught my attention. A philosopher, mathematician and physicist like Pascal was, methodical and rigorous to the core, was establishing a direct correlation between the inability to sit calm and human evil -which is, at least, very daring.
But this provocative aphorism kept me meditating quietly, just to raise many reasons to agree with this lucid French thinker.
Agitation, inertia, distress or anxiety, among others, are generators of adrenaline, a hormone that predisposes us to action, but also to defense and especially to attack. The more stressed we are, the less able we are to stay sober, calm, even-tempered. More excitement and distress lead to a increasing tendency to precipitation and, to top it all, to violence. Yes, Pascal was right.
On the other hand, direct synonyms for calm are peace and tranquility. Thanks to being calm, we connect with ourselves, whether in an introspective meditation (back within ourselves) either in a contemplative meditation (observing and appreciating serenely what is around us). Anyway, those flowering contents of our consciousness which create the meditative process eventually help us to know ourselves better, to keep our fears, doubts, guilt, anxieties and troubles quiet enough, and produce a progressive and deeply therapeutic release of our unconscious accelerators. Yes, calm meditation leads to serenity, to the appreciation of life, to equanimity, and certainly to joy and lucidity in a progressive process that cleans harmful thoughts and emotions, which are those that tend to cause growing behaviour conflicts. Again, Pascal was right.
Besides, he who can tolerate loneliness and their own company without anxiety or evasion, without causing noise inside and outside oneself, without escaping; he who is good partner for oneself and admit their loneliness as a good companion has much to win, because they depend on the reflection of the other, because they don’t sell self-esteem cheap for a pinch of recognition. Yes, he loves and appreciates their own solitude, he has probably learnt to respect himself. Yes, Pascal. Yes.
Let’s pursue inner calm, just sitting in a room, or contemplating the sea, or before a beautiful landscape, or before a piece of art. Let’s find the conditions to cultivate our serenity, quiet, calm and pleased.
Calm to our being, to our thoughts and emotions so they revert in a calm and quiet state for those around us undoubtedly.
Calm for being, heartfelt actions, peace in the world.
Kisses and hugs,
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