Why Peace and Quiet is Good For Us
“We are not on this earth to accumulate victories, things, and experiences, but to be whittled and sandpapered until what’s left is who we truly are.” ~ Arianna Huffington
We’ve often heard it said… that no meaning or true happiness can be found in the fleeting nature of victories or the superficiality or impermanence of material objects. Most of us know and accept this. But experiences?
What would the proponents of experiential travel say? What would the minimalists think – those who argue that experiences. not things, are the answer to a fulfilled life?
It’s an interesting point and one we’ve been contemplating ourselves. It’s what led us to the creation of a new kind of travel. Essential travel. The kind of travel, or way of life, that focuses on the essentials. That speaks to and works to nourish what Arianna Huffington means when she writes that we are on earth to get closer to “who we truly are.”
The more time we spend in nature, in peace and stillness, thoughtfulness as much as thoughtlessness, on our riverbank and on the river itself, the closer we feel to our essential selves as individuals.
There is nothing to distract us. Eventually, we lose interest in our minds’ natter and rest in silence. In moments like this, fear, shame, anxiety, all negative emotions slip over-board, replaced by simple trust, love, contentment. Sit long enough under our Zambezi skies and this is the effect.
New experiences give us life, they shake us up, they teach us and bring us closer to each other, but they are also fleeting. They can leave us wanting more – the antithesis of contentment.
Where we find real joy is in the moments in between, when the essentials line up. When the excitement is balanced by an acceptance and reveling in simplicity. When we’re gazing at the sunset from the deck or day-dreaming in hammocks, when we strip everything back and focus on the nourishment of good food, water, sunshine, rest, peace.
We all have our own philosophies. But this is one we keep coming back to. The journey inward. The journey of coming home to ourselves, initiated by the act of leaving home. The kind of trip that makes us look not only at the wild spaces and new faces of our travel destination, but also at ourselves – as though we too were a great scene, a must-see landmark or magnificent sunrise and set.
We don’t get more from life by getting more – whether objects, triumphs or experiences. Sometimes a little less lets us go all that deeper.