It wasn’t me who first said it, of course.
In fact, this message has been delivered since times immemorial, by many a special human Being, some of them so potent that they changed human history forever (albeit not necessarily, or at least not yet, in the exact way they would wish).
But right now, what I have in mind is a quote by one of the Titans of modern literature, Franz Kafka.
This is the author whose last name became an adjective (Kafkaesque) referring to a particular writing style or, in general, to certain situations, which, on the surface, seem idiosyncratic and exaggerated, but in reality they are not uncommon at all in our everyday life, especially in these times of confusion and insecurity.
These are situations that are typically related to the pure paranoia and surrealism (not in the good sense) that the “formal” organization of the contemporary human society is very frequently based upon.
So, Franz Kafka said the following:
“You do not need to leave your room.
Remain sitting at your table and listen.
Do not even listen, simply wait, be quiet, still and solitary.
The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked, it has no choice, it will roll in ecstasy at your feet”.
It is admittedly a very unusual saying in itself.
And it seems even more odd and counterintuitive when juxtaposed with the frantic, “go-go-go and take no prisoners”, action-oriented spirit of our times.
And this is exactly why this saying is a real treasure and is worthy of deep contemplation.
Please read it again a few more times before proceeding with this post.
. . .
Let’s now look at the whole thing a bit closer.
The first thing to highlight is that what Franz Kafka invites us to do here is… literally nothing.
Notice that the phrase doesn’t start by mentioning an explicit objective, in the pursue of which one should avoid action.
It just begins with:
“You Do Not Need To Leave Your Room”
“Your room”, here, can also be interpreted as “the space you are currently occupying; not only physically, but also emotionally and mentally”
In other words: “do not stress to find out where to begin from, you can – and should – begin right from where you are”.
In fact, there is no alternative: since you are always in the “Here and Now”, where else could you begin from?
Yes, but, the question remains:
To Begin Exactly What?
Now, don’t you worry about that!
All you need to know is that there is no particular preparation needed for what is to come next.
What is to come next, then?
“Remain Sitting At Your Table And Listen”
What is important, Franz Kafka says, is that you become receptive; in fact, as receptive and open as possible.
Don’t try to impose anything on yourself or the circumstances surrounding you, whichever they may be.
Just be attentive.
Or, to be more specific:
Do Not Even Listen,
Simply Wait, Be Quiet, Still And Solitary
If you are frank with yourself, even your listening mode is often imbued with obsession or stress.
If you stay put for several moments, listening and doing nothing else…
Isn’t it very likely that after a while, you will get restless and start to anxiously wonder:
“What am I waiting for? I can’t hear anything. Should I have caught something already but I missed it? Am I becoming deaf? WHAT IS GOING ON?”
You get the picture.
And I am sure you have yourself been the witness – I cannot call you a culprit, really – of many such an internal monologue.
So, forget about listening.
Just wait in silence and stillness, by yourself.
Observe your thoughts come and go, but don’t engage with them.
Acknowledge them, take note of them, and then let them go.
Allow that space of stillness and silence to spontaneously spring forth from somewhere deep within you.
Don’t force yourself into a “silent submission”.
It doesn’t work like that.
Just… give the whole thing space and time.
Be alert and present, but, for God’s sake, do not stress yourself.
What is required from you is to be patient and earnest in allowing stillness and quietness to take you over.
Then, once you have surrendered to it, you will see that:
The World Will Freely Offer Itself To You
To Be Unmasked, It Has No Choice, It Will Roll In Ecstasy At Your Feet”
Revealed, stark naked, in all its glory.
Choice-less – there is no choice in Oneness.
Ecstatic, blissful, joyful.
All yours, now and forever.
So, do it!
Now is the only time, anyway!
Why not invite the World in, the way Franz Kafka recommends, right at this moment, and allow It to show you who you truly are?
In Silent Introspection, Realization, Transformation…
Everything Will Have NO CHOICE But To Fall In Its Right Place
Which, once again, is Here and Now.
An indivisible Unity.
Quiet, invisible, but, oh, so alive!
With an aliveness that is more alive than you have ever felt…!
So, what do you say?
Will you allow the World to operate through you?
Only you, of course, can answer this question.
Until next time,
Don’t be quiet but rather… quietly BE.