This morning I walked the River Trail starting before sunrise. 30-minutes in, I found a small natural amphitheater formed by a rock wall concealed between the trail and the river.
To get to the river's edge, I went beyond the rock theater, crossed over a rock flat with tire-sized holes formed by lava flows. Then I sat on the ledge of a rock so that my feet hovered over the passing water.
All I heard was continual crashing from the big rapids.
Pausing for 20-minutes on the rock, waiting to see if some muse would speak to me - none came. Or if they did, I couldn't hear them over the rapids.
Such a loud noise forced me to silence.
There is comfort in this imposing force.
What else is like this? Why does the silence offer comfort?
In Eric Hoffer's book about mass movements, he wrote about the comfort people feel when leaders give them a place for their ambitions. This is part of the mechanics of what moves people together. The imposing force of a vision can silence our own voice. It takes a lot of effort to find our own way, and when someone offers a path, being part of a crowd can comfort us.
Sitting on the ledge of the rock with water gushing by - I imagined how painful it would be to fall in here. I notice the path I'd take before getting to safety. I see what underwater structures I'd hit as they create the white froth.