The Space Between Thoughts

Another useful method of developing silent awareness is to recognize the space between thoughts, between periods of inner chatter. If you closely attend with sharp mindfulness, when one thought ends and before another thought begins—THERE! That is silent awareness! It may be only momentary at first, but as you recognize that fleeting silence you become accustomed to it, and as you become accustomed to it, the silence lasts longer. Once you have found it at last, you begin to enjoy the silence, and that is why it grows. But remember, silence is shy. If silence hears you talking about her, she vanishes immediately!

– from Cultivate Tranquility, Harvest Insight by Ajahn Brahmavamso (Lion’s Roar, 10 June 2016)

This article provides an historical view of the Buddha’s teachings on meditation, and a clear step-by-step instructions for cultivating a stable, tranquil, insightful meditation practice. The essence of ‘practice’, of course, is repetition and patience. Allowing ourselves to become accustomed to what happens when we sit, not setting too many goals at once (noticing a moment between thoughts is enough!), and forgiving whatever shortcomings we perceive in ourselves.