Imagine a play opening with a nineteen year old college student walking onto the stage. She's wearing dungarees and a red football shirt with the number 23 on the back. She sits on a cushion. A man in his fifties, a Zen master, enters and sits silently on another cushion. They meditate for thirty minutes then stand, bow and walk around silently for eight minutes. They meditate again. Intermission. Act two. Several people join the master and the young woman. They chant and meditate. At the end of the show, the audience applauds in silence. I think the play will have a short run.
Thelonius Monk said the silence between the notes was as important as the notes. Because of meditation I'm able to bring more silence into my work. I'm learning to allow characters to be silent when some strong emotion grips them.
The ancient meditation tradition says there is deep wisdom inside each of us and we need silence to listen to that wisdom. Paradoxically, silence draws us into the world. It mysteriously makes us more compassionate.