Take a few moments to settle into a posture of alertness and calmness.
Gently close your eyes and fully relax and soften your body.
Bring your attention to any area of your body that feels right or contracted. Let your shoulders, hands, and face soften and relax.
Bring your attention just to listening. Try not to look for sound; simply be attentive to the sounds that are present in the moment.
Settle your attention into a receptive listening.
Notice the sounds that are near and those that are more distant.
Sense, if you can, the beginnings and the endings of the sounds.
In sounds that are constant, sense the differing tones and intensities within the apparent constancy.
Notice what happens in your mind or emotions in relationship to the sounds you are receiving.
Be attentive to how quickly the mind brings judgments or labels to the sounds.
Simply sense the moments when you attention has shifted from just listening into the judgments, descriptions, or associations that have arisen in your mind.
See if it is possible for you to let go of the world of interpretation and come back to just listening.
Notice the moments when you find yourself leaning towards the sounds you enjoy or contracting in the face of sounds you find disturbing.
Explore whether it is possible for you to sustain your attention in just listening, embracing the pleasant and unpleasant equally, bringing an equal sensitivity and receptivity to both.
When thoughts arise, allow them to pass, letting them just be whispers in the background of your attention.
Stay as fully present as possible with just listening.
Sense the arising and passing of sound, the beginnings and endings of the sounds that come to you.
Notice the moments of stillness and silence that may be present in the interlude between the ending of one sound and the beginning of another.
Sense the moments when you find yourself listening to silence.
In the time of silence, don’t leap to find another sound to attend to, but rest within the silence.
As your attention deepens, so does your capacity to listen. You may begin to find yourself aware of subtler levels of sound coming from the world around you and the world within you.
You may begin to hear the sound of your heartbeat or your pulse.
Attend wholeheartedly to whatever sounds appear, relaxing in the silence that emerges in the absence of sound.
Sense the spaciousness and calmness that begin to emerge with your deepening capacity to just listen with sensitivity and simplicity.
Simply be present in the presence of sound, in the presence of silence.
— Christina Feldman in Heart of Wisdom, Mind of Calm