Stop. Listen. What do you hear? What do you want to hear? What do you actually hear? The pace of life is frenetic. Stop and listen. Simply stop and listen.

Morning comes like the night ends. Repeatedly. Ritualistically. Regardless of whether you welcome it or reject it. Morning comes. You have a choice: sit still and wake gently as you become aware of your thoughts and the fine sensations of your body, move about your room and house and thaw your sleeping body to a state of awakened awareness, or rush violently in a semi-conscious state of panic toward your  commitments for the day. What will it be? What other choices have you?

Originating from the Middle East, there is the call to prayer. It comes in the darkness before dawn. You are, as a member of the faithful, in agreement with the requirement that you rise, cleanse your hands, face, head and feet and that you prostrate yourself in the direction of Mecca, with the entire Muslim community, in deference to Allah, to God. It is a time of self restraint and a time of giving. It is a private moment and requires nothing and everything of the practitioner. An unquestioning devotion to that moment of peace. That’s all.

In and out of India, Hindus practice devotional prayers to the god Ram. Buddhists everywhere do the same, invoking compassion for the Buddha and for all. Some spin prayer wheels. Others hang their prayers on flags. Tibetans prostrate deeply and modern practitioners sit and walk and have many ways of honouring the moment, living with mental interference and letting go of any attempt to grasp and fix. In Greece and in other orthodox countries, Christians go to churches. The religious like the non-religious have a means by which to live in inner peace. It matters not if you have a belief or if you are not a believer of any one doctrine. The question is: what is your means by which to find your peace?

Stop and listen. Buddhists call this Mindfulness. A common word for this is Awareness. Practice awareness. Breathe and relinquish any need to control anything, because there is no need to do anything but stop and listen. What do you hear? Note and let go of this because there is no need to do anything right here and now. Simply stop and listen.