Standing before the Colorado Symphony Orchestra, the guitarist explained the original idea for his composition—“The Still Small Voice.”
“I invite you all to try to focus on the single note that is sustaining, while all of the other music is going on around it,” the musician said, introducing the piece to the audience.
He would play and sustain one single, continuous note for the entirety of the piece, while the complex movement and modulation of the orchestra took place around it.
He explained that the note was a metaphor for the still, small voice each of us has inside that is our true essence or being.
It is always there amid the noise and clatter of life, yet easily lost when we don’t take time to really listen and pay attention to it. What an amazing metaphor, and how true. If you’re like me, and a vast majority of the population for that matter, you probably experience times when you become so distracted and overwhelmed by the demands and stresses of daily living, that any inkling of a peaceful, inner “voice” seems to disappear.
But no matter how noisy life gets, your still small voice is always there.
It is your being, your essence, and your true self. It exists beyond thinking, just beneath the surface. And it is independent of external stressors and events—even beliefs and ideas—that you might otherwise confuse with who you are. It is also the place that creativity, inspiration, insights, and great ideas come from. Like the single note in the guitarist’s piece, it sustains calmly, endlessly under the turbulent noise and dissonance of life.
So how to tune into it?
When your mind becomes quiet and focused—whether through meditation, prayer, getting immersed in an activity like exercise or music, or even just being still and watching what’s around you while you’re waiting in line or sitting in traffic—you can access that voice any time you need to. You will find it is a place of deep peace, calm and comfort, because it is your core, the real YOU.
I encourage you to try it. Listen closely for your still small voice.
You might notice the “noise” of thoughts, worries, to-do’s or other distractions come up, but simply let them pass, and bring your attention back to stillness and silence. Make a habit of it, even just for a few minutes at a time, and notice what you feel when you go to that place. Anytime you are overwhelmed, stressed, frustrated, depressed, anxious, discouraged, remember that your core is unfazed by all of it, and it is always there for you, if you listen closely.