A Moment of Silence

“A moment of silence, please, for the lost art of shutting up.”

– Neil Genzlinger (American Playwrite)

I belong to a wonderful book club!  The No Guilt Book Club.  We go along to the group each month and have a glass of wine, or don’t; talk about books we’ve read, or haven’t; share some books, or don’t.  No Guilt, No Rules!  It’s fantastic!

Last night at book club, my friend Anne talked about the time she spent at Thich Nhat Hanh‘s Retreat Centre, Plum Village.  She explained that everytime a bell rang, a phone rang or any alarm sounded, everyone would take a moment to stop, be silent and mindful.  Imagine that, instead of rushing and hurrying everytime we hear a phone ring or an alarm sound to take just a split second and use that as a reminder to be silent and mindful.  When I asked her if she continued it after she left, Anne laughed and said no.  Of course not!  Who has time?  We are all so busy, who has time to take a moment to be silent every time a bell rings?

When I got home from book group last night, I got my newsletter from Daily Good.  In the email, there was a link for Fred Rogers’ (of Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood) acceptance speech for his Emmy for the Lifetime Achievement Award.  Now don’t get me wrong, Mr. Rogers Neighborhood was never my all time favorite show, however I found this speech very moving.  He asked the audience to remember the people who had loved them into being.  What a wonderful way to put, to think about the people who have loved us into being.  He then asked the audience to take ten seconds of silence to think of the people who helped them become who they are.  It was very moving in that grand auditorium at the Emmy Awards, with everyone dressed in their finest to take a moment of  silence.  There were tears and a lot of emotion.

I don’t fool myself into thinking I will pause and be mindful every time I hear a bell in the future; but I am going to try to be silent for at least a moment every day – and to just breathe and just be, and perhaps think of the people who loved me into being.

Please take a moment to watch this speech by Mr. Rogers, and perhaps take a moment of silence to think of the people who loved you into being.



Please let me know your thoughts on this speech, and any methods you use to remind yourself to be mindful.

And as always thank you for taking the time to visit, I appreciate it.



8 thoughts on “A Moment of Silence

  1. Thank you Patti and Fred, for both being good neighbours, the thought to take 10 seconds to think of someone, how little time that is, just a blink in my day and yet a thunderess resounding tone in my psyche. What a wonderful sentence, those who have loved one into being,


  2. Reblogged this on Life with Instructions and commented:
    Here’s a wonderful article that I have reblogged from A Woman’s Guide, which talks about the mindfulness of Thich Nhat Hanh in stopping to be mindful when you hear a bell ring, and Fred Rogers from the popular children’s television show who in his Emmy speech thanked those “who loved him into being.” It’s an inspiring reminder to take a moment from our hectic life to contemplate.


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